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LondonRascal

Trixie (Rascal's Fleet)

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Why do a hire yard sell a boat?

A need to keep up with fashion and style of craft?

Or have they become uneconomic to maintain for continous use during the season?

A question, because I don't know.

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The Hains 32 is a lovely boat, very well fitted out  but it’s a little small in length and width and with a £250k price tag much prefer the 35 Hull Hains, Broom, Westwood.

A low hours 5 to 10 year old example for half the above cost would be my bet.

Ive never bought an ex hire boat preferring low hours private but can see the attraction with a well maintained example from the likes a Richadsons but would stay well away from the likes of the recent old alpha models.

John

 

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8 minutes ago, ChrisB said:

Why do a hire yard sell a boat?

A need to keep up with fashion and style of craft?

Or have they become uneconomic to maintain for continous use during the season?

A question, because I don't know.

As we realised because it was falling apart!

(ok maybe it wasnt quite that bad but it certainly needed more work than we expected being as it was sold to us as a “fully refurbished exhire craft”)

Some yards must sell off the older to help finance the new, others just sell off the sheds they dont want to spend any money on to bring up to standard. 

I suppose it all depends what standard you are happy with but I (i think i can say like Robin) prefer things to be in a good state of repair and fully functional. 

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On the othe hand it can be an economic way into boating, for many possibly the only way. As with anything it is a case of buyer beware, a survey will give you enough information about whether to make an offer or walk away and at what level. A sound boat that is cosmetically tired can be an excellent choice, especially if you are handy with tools!

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I have an Richardsons Calypso and an ex Topcraft Topliner.

I had thorough surveys on both.

The Topliner was in excellent condition with a very high standard of fit out. It was sold as the yard was closing at short notice but hadn't been left to deteriorate.

The calypso was good as it had been in private ownership for 7 years before I purchased it.

Just go into it with your eyes open and be realistic about what you are getting.

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3 hours ago, ChrisB said:

I must have misunderstood your intentions Robin for which I am sorry.

With your purchase of the Trader I assumed that you wished to go, if not bluewater then overseas. 

It's okay, a lot of people think that is why I wanted such a capable boat - in truth I am personally perfectly fine using Independence as an enormous day boat with a cruise to Reedham and back. while it is quite an amazing feeling to explore an area and arrive at a new destination by way of sea, and I am more than happy to do such, if the opportunity never presented itself again I would not be upset. Being brutally honest, the only boat I have an emotional attachment to is Broad Ambition, I care about her and work on her and help keep her looked after in a deeper way. Independence and Trixie are very different, with most of the works being carried out by Boatyards. I am having the works I am on both boats done  because it is how I feel boats should be - in perfect order and looking tidy with the smallest niggles being sorted before they become bigger issues. 

As to ex- hire boats...

I am not too sure myself why some boats come up for sale out of a hire fleet and others do not. I guess firstly it will be down to how well that type have let in the proceeding season or two. What is clear is it is not a rash decision taken at short notice, but often a year in advance which is why you will find many hire boats for sale come with the point of being available 'at the end of the season'. Now, I may be a little cynical here, but if you've identified boats that you are going to retire will your level of maintenance on these be the same in the proceeding years?

In some circumstances you can really get a good deal - a boat which might have had a reactively recent re-engine, new hob and oven along with a new fridge and maybe some newish upholstery comes up on the market this is more attractive than one of the same class which has not had such improvements. Some ex-Hire boats may come with a full inventory of utensils, cutlery, crockery etc others will not. The reason I am personally put off a hire boat as a purchase is because there is no getting away from it they have had a hard life. Many hundreds, maybe thousands of people have spent time on them - and so everything will have had a lot of use, not just mechanically, but things like  windows being scratched, catches not working as once did, berths and seats being a bit less 'supportive' and so on. I am not going to go into detail but suffice to say some of the things I have seen having a look under the floors and in engine bays on hire boats over the years have made me pleased it was only a short period I was on the boat - but equally, some others have genuinely surprised me with their upkeep. Something as simple has having navigation lights put in and the wiring will cost a fair bit, that said if you want to have a 40 foot plus boat as a canvas to work on and you are going to live on it and the original cost is say £40,000 it could be considered a bargain compared to a bricks and mortar home.

I think Richardson's are the most fair and reasonable going - countless people have bout their ex-hire boats some have spent big to make them into lovely craft with partial or full re-fits and painting, others have simply removed the logos and re-named them and short of the usual remedial works here and there they have stayed as were from the day they came off hire. Other yards seem to charge a real premium for their boats and won't negotiate much if at all on the asking price.

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If boating on The Broads and using your boat often, one must be realistic that the boat will get the odd extra knock or two. An ex hire boat tends to lead to less sleepless nights than having a new, or nearly new boat. An ex hire boat is also a good easy and relatively cheap introduction to boat ownership.

One thing that a lot of people do not perhaps consider, is that hire boats are generally built with easy maintenance in mind, maybe at the expense of being aesthetically pleasing to the eye. Larger inspection panels and hatches. Easier access to the engine etc. Some companies tend to over engineer to ensure less problems in service. I've hired a boat from a Northern yard where the reed filter not only needed cleaning every day, but would over heat if it wasn't. My own ex hire boat is engineered to the point that it can often be left for a whole week or more and still not give a problem. The primary reed filter on my boat is a very large diameter pipe that would probably suit a boat twice the size. No kidding the filter inside is a piece of guttering drain pipe with literally hundreds of tiny holes drilled into it. Very little gets through it and due to the length of it and the amount of holes in it, it has never got blocked. The finer debris that does make it through the primary filer is then caught by the more normal swirl pot with filter and glass see through lid. Often checked, but rarely needing to be cleaned. I've attached a picture of the primary filer assembly. Finding a pipe wrench to fit the cap was a nightmare. The filter may be heath Robinson, but extremely effective.

Robin's self acknowledged slightly cynical view, in my opinion is probably not the case in most instances. Although a yard may ear mark certain boats for sale, they have no idea if, or when it may sell. They still need the boat to be reliable in the meantime so I think it unlikely that corners will be cut in maintenance. When I bought my boat the yard had four in the class and two were for sale. I was told to have a look around all four and pick the one I wanted to make an offer on, so whilst the yard had identified they wanted to sell two, they had no real preference over which out of the four they were selling. All four were twelve years old at the time, and had just under gone extensive refits two years prior, including new engines.

Primary Filter.jpg

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You pay your money and take your choice, there are some rubbish ex-hire boats around and some extremely good ones, likewise there are good and bad amongst boats that have always been in private hands, its up to you to make sure what the condition of the boat is before you buy regardless of where it comes from, the difference is that ex-hire boats are built for use on the broads, they are generally sturdier and fit under bridges and easier to maintain, many private only boats have come from other waterways where they get knocked about in locks, you also tend to pay a premium for a privately owned  boat that doesn't necessarily reflect its condition and the amount you can spend on it bringing it up to scratch.

Each to their own but for me for use on the broads  its ex-hire every time for value for money and versatility, they win hands down for maximising usable space and ease of access when mooring as generally they have a lower freeboard and wider sidewalks, important considerations as you become less agile.

Fred

 

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I remember a boat with one of those massive filters in it, I am pretty sure it was either Distant Horizon or Sunlit Horizon - I remember at hand over being told if anything gets blocked don't try and touch it and call us.

I also have just been alerted to a 'bargain' in Belgium. A 1991 Sheerline 1070 (Centre Cockpit) for £46,000 but very negotiable on price, Fitted with an electric canopy, bow thruster, in all original gel and just over 2,000Hrs on her engine. Lovely but don't worry there won't be a Rascal heading over the Channel. Seems a decent price for this boat having seen these pop up on the Broads before out of hire attracting more than that.

 

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I just had a look on Graig's Database and find I did not need to send in photos - already listed on there is Trixie.

I am not sure why, but this feels a kind of achievement to see the same registration and boat as she was and now as she is. It is also nice to see my Mum at the helm when they were taken and not me!

TRX2.jpg.fb231e782bdbd6bb74aee26db67af2da.jpg

TRX1.jpg.653f9d8814782f1a915fdceda6ef7cec.jpg

 

 

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24 minutes ago, scaniaman said:

The stripe colour match is superb, shame about the fender colour lol

The stripe colour is actually too bright - a Cherry type of red, not a deeper Burgundy colour so it is one of the items that is being changed to better match with the canopy. I am also having the boot topping re-applied in a darker red using a far harder wearing paint and that will be brought up just a couple of inches as currently when fully fuelled and watered with two people onboard the waterline can be above the current boot line which has caused muck to accumulate on the white gel coat of the hull.  While I have no blue fender, I always carry one onboard as a spare to be used at certain moorings, the grey fenders break up the colours and I have yet to see another boat with this colour - it has a metallic finish wish lots of small reflective particles much like a metallic paint.

 

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After some improvement work and upgrades have been carried out over the autumn and into the winter time of 2018, it has been a trying time getting time and the right weather to have her back to Sutton Staithe Boatyard for the remainder of the work to be completed and some previous issues rectified.

It was a case where perhaps some progress/communication had been lacking during the works and where asking for something to be investigated caused it to be removed and replaced but either the original issue remained or a new one was then created. I am pleased to say that Robert has been most helpful and diligent and has shown what true customer care is about.

Today I had a productive conversation with Glen of Aquaspark Marine, who while is a qualified Marine Surveyor has had over 30 years of experience in the marine industry specialising in marine electrical systems and installations.  The good news is that Trixie's electrical system is now in good order.  I have opted to keep an 'Automatic Changeover Control' that was installed in place of a more simple cam-switch (Shore/Inverter/Off). However to ensure that this is fail safe I am having a separate Isolator installed between the 12v Battery supply and the Inverter - something that was not included in the instillation of the Inverter and which meant you were relying on a remote standby panel to control the Inverter and thus should you need to conduct any electrical work onboard could not be 100% sure there was no power to the ring main (short of removing the leads from the battery terminals). 

I am having a very small Accumulator tank fitted to the fresh water system to remove the 'chattering' that has become a problem since the new fresh water pump was installed. This is pump number 3 having had an old Johnson, a Jabsco and now a new SPX Flow pump (manufactured by Johnson).

The steering remains a problem where a new steering cable was fitted to help remove some play in the wheel - but has created a situation whereby the wheel needs two hands and a lot of effort to turn. I am told they are going to check the cable, the run, diameter of the turn radius's it passes through and the rudder stock to try and find the what is causing this since previously one finger could turn the wheel.

Once this and a few other small snags are sorted it will be good to go for the new season. I plan to have some new carpet fitted (Stalham Carpets) and all new LED lighting is to go in and some new speakers for the Stereo should see her finally complete....Well, I say that but you know how boats are...

 

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I'm curious ... do you miss being out on the rivers Robin? It sounds as if you've had so much going on with all the work on all your fleet plus your car, that you've not done much cruising in a long while. In past years we all eagerly awaited your next hire boat and subsequent blog. Clearly you've no need to do that now but I am one of the many who learnt a lot about the Broads courtesy of the Captain's Blog. Is it yet to return in something more like how it used to be?

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6 hours ago, SwanR said:

I'm curious ... do you miss being out on the rivers Robin? It sounds as if you've had so much going on with all the work on all your fleet plus your car, that you've not done much cruising in a long while. In past years we all eagerly awaited your next hire boat and subsequent blog. Clearly you've no need to do that now but I am one of the many who learnt a lot about the Broads courtesy of the Captain's Blog. Is it yet to return in something more like how it used to be?

Very interesting point. In short, yes I do.

However, I will take this opportunity to be frank and open up.  Firstly, I think for me what was the initial draw and big part of boating when I look back was the ability to escape to an area that was so very different to that where I lived, and be away from all the usual pressures of life and work - but also family.  When I would hire a boat and be alone it was that solitude on the water that I found to be the perfect medicine.

Along with the above, going boating was the only way (short of cycling) that I could have complete control on where I was going, and do it all myself. Since I have learnt to drive, it has now opened up a entire new landscape to explore.  Last weekend I was in Scarborough and Whitby. This was an idea I had the evening before when onboard Independence with Shiela and by 8:30am the following morning we were on the A47 leaving Norwich behind headed for Scarborough with Shiela using her phone looking at hotels to head to.

I began driving in late November last year, and now it is late February 2019 - lets call it three months, and in that time I have covered some 7,000 odd miles. I have turned into 'Victor Meldrew' behind the wheel but other than that I am loving every moment.  I am also missing a great deal about the boating though.

Right now BA is looking forward to having some pampering come April, she has also had a lot of work and upgrades as Charlie has been posting on here too but she so far has not been out 'in anger' on the water, Trixie has been in and out of boatyards since last September and Independence - well she has had a few issues here and there but has been acting as home for a good part of the year which is intended and explains why the type of boat, size and internal space/fit out was chosen.

It does beg the question though - what about boating? What about the videos?  To be honest I got tired of the Blogs because they were the same style, same way repeated - sure you could mix up the boat, location and so on but there is only so many moorings, rivers and places to go and film on the Broads. Other 'Vloggers' have come along and are doing their thing too, but I realised that what I was doing was going on boats not necessarily because I had wanted to, but to make a new Blog, or because viewers and followers were asking when the next instalment would be.  My channel's core demographic is men in their 50's and 60's and a smaller percentage is men in their late 30's. Hardly any women, and certainly very few younger viewers. 

When you look about the Broads at owners of boats, my channel's viewership reflects this, then you have the hirers who tend to be younger and come in groups - families and friends.  The thing is while I may be 40 this year, I certainly don't act that age, I am not sensible and responsible and I don't really consider much before doing things - I live for the moment, get bored easily and prefer not to settle - perhaps a typical Gemini then.  So imagine having to conform to the same old in Blogs - I wanted to put the camera down and enjoy things, like spending 2 days and nights on the mud weight on Barton Broad. That would make for incredible boring video, it would also cause someone like Shiela to go mad with boredom - but for me it was lovely to experience it.

I have made some subtle changes to the Channel, no longer is it "Boating. As it happens" but now the tagline is "Life, captured".  I feel like the old rocker who went quiet and came out with a new album years later which 90% of his followers thought was to 'progressive' and were up in arms, but he having played the industry line was free from doing what a label thought was best and decided to put out music he wanted to, free to experiment and explore his creativity in new ways again.  That is what I want to do myself.  Expect more driving films, but the boating stuff will surly come too - at the moment, it is about doing things how I want to, when I want to in the style I want to.

 

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Just to add that although ‘B.A’ has indeed enjoying being pampered of late, she is fuelled up and ready to go as normal (minus her mast)

Griff

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Thanks for that Robin, as always you explain yourself very well. Like Jean and no doubt many others I'm missing the boating vlogs. Yes it's true others have come along and I really enjoy those too but yours was always really enjoyable. I don't think I'd ever tire of them, even if you were on the same boat every time (which was never the case). However, I completely get your desire to do your own thing and explore pastures new. Your recent traveling away by car reminds me I could take the opportunity to do so more often myself. 

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Many thanks for taking the time to reply Robin. Your answer is so honest and open and very interesting. The Broads is one of those places that holds a fascination for so many people. But I understand what you're saying about what boating gave you at the time.

Making videos can become a little addictive. My videos have become a hobby of mine but it sometimes means that you spend your time looking for the opportunity ... and other days you need to leave the camera behind so that you can just enjoy being out.

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And by the way ... if you get back up to Scarborough again, make the time to go to Filey. It's absolutely beautiful and I fell in love with it when I visited ... and yes, I made a couple of videos of my trips up there!

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32 minutes ago, SwanR said:

And by the way ... if you get back up to Scarborough again, make the time to go to Filey. It's absolutely beautiful and I fell in love with it when I visited ... and yes, I made a couple of videos of my trips up there!

Just had a weekend staying at Whitley Bay. Lovely little place and some cracking proper old drinkers pubs. reasonably priced too. Trip back was a bit of a pain with cancelled and delayed trains. but the upside is that whilst 90 mins late I get my ticket money back. Will help to pay towards my return visit!

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8 hours ago, BroadAmbition said:

Just to add that although ‘B.A’ has indeed enjoying being pampered of late, she is fuelled up and ready to go as normal (minus her mast)

I'm trying to get Shiela up this weekend and do that Varnishing and take her out - even if I can't encourage her to, the Varnishing will be done :)

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Well make sure you keep the varnishing dry until it is hardened - And ring me before your brush gets anywhere near my woodwork!

Griff

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On 12/08/2018 at 21:00, Jbx5 said:

The Hains 32 is a lovely boat, very well fitted out  but it’s a little small in length and width and with a £250k price tag much prefer the 35 Hull Hains, Broom, Westwood.

A low hours 5 to 10 year old example for half the above cost would be my bet.

Ive never bought an ex hire boat preferring low hours private but can see the attraction with a well maintained example from the likes a Richadsons but would stay well away from the likes of the recent old alpha models.

John

 

Know I`m a bit late to the party but why stay away from the likes of recent old alpha`s? And would you say the same about a 1991 Aquafibre such as Reflecting Light?

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