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I got the feeling she was waiting for the ex owner to turn up today for a look, but as I am usually wrong about these things anything could happen

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On 14/07/2020 at 09:47, ditchcrawler said:

I got the feeling she was waiting for the ex owner to turn up today for a look, but as I am usually wrong about these things anything could happen

Spot on! Thank you all so much for your advice. Turned out to be the starter motor. The seller helped us source and fit a (probably short term replacement) and so far we’ve successfully got going three times on it. We’re trundling down past Uxbridge now and we’ll stop there and ask some questions. Also going to Willowtree marina to ask for an opinion. 
 

the stern gland which we’ve greased is leaking a fair amount and the bilge is filling up. The bilge pump seems to work very intermittently. We have to press and hold it but it usually ticks off after ten seconds. And the bilge is filling up but it’s not at Worrying levels yet. 
 

we have only a little white smoke from the exhaust. (Outside the boat not rising from the pipe) Is that any cause for concern? It’s very faint. 
 

Thanks all 

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10 minutes ago, Layla said:

Spot on! Thank you all so much for your advice. Turned out to be the starter motor. The seller helped us source and fit a (probably short term replacement) and so far we’ve successfully got going three times on it. We’re trundling down past Uxbridge now and we’ll stop there and ask some questions. Also going to Willowtree marina to ask for an opinion. 
 

the stern gland which we’ve greased is leaking a fair amount and the bilge is filling up. The bilge pump seems to work very intermittently. We have to press and hold it but it usually ticks off after ten seconds. And the bilge is filling up but it’s not at Worrying levels yet. 
 

we have only a little white smoke from the exhaust. (Outside the boat not rising from the pipe) Is that any cause for concern? It’s very faint. 
 

Thanks all 

Did you have the boat surveyed before purchase ?

 

The surveyor should at least have bought these problems to your attention to allow you to revalue and reduce your offer to compensate.

If the surveyor didn't find all these faults you may be able to get some recompense.

Edited by Alan de Enfield

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14 minutes ago, Alan de Enfield said:

Did you have the boat surveyed before purchase ?

 

The surveyor should at least have bought these problems to your attention to allow you to revalue and reduce your offer to compensate.

If the surveyor didn't find all these faults you may be able to get some recompense.

I was under the impression all surveyors have get-out-of-jail-free clauses when you hire them?

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12 minutes ago, Alan de Enfield said:

Did you have the boat surveyed before purchase ?

 

The surveyor should at least have bought these problems to your attention to allow you to revalue and reduce your offer to compensate.

If the surveyor didn't find all these faults you may be able to get some recompense.

Yeah I know what you mean: The seller had a survey from last year we ran past a surveyor we knew and the dad was a mechanic. They were good people and we bought it in good faith. It was always going to be a ‘project’ and that was Mostly Reflected  in the price we paid :)) now we’re learning as fast as we can 

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2 minutes ago, Tasemu said:

I was under the impression all surveyors have get-out-of-jail-free clauses when you hire them?

That is my experience and to which my Solicitor suggested 'just give it up' you will spend a fortune in court and will lose'

It cost me over £25k to put right what the surveyor had signed off as being "OK" and were not.

 

Other forum members seem to have different ideas - but I wonder how many have actually tried ?

Edited by Alan de Enfield

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3 minutes ago, Layla said:

Yeah I know what you mean: The seller had a survey from last year we ran past a surveyor we knew and the dad was a mechanic. They were good people and we bought it in good faith. It was always going to be a ‘project’ and that was Mostly Reflected  in the price we paid :)) now we’re learning as fast as we can 

Maybe on your next boat, don't go by an old survey, a year can make a huge difference, the seller could have changed the engine, stripped out all the gas and electric and drilled holes in the hull. Without your own survey, or having sufficient experience yourself, you are just buying the unknown and probably trouble.

Many project boats when finished will not be worth what you put into them, so it really is better for someone with no boat experience to save up a bit longer and buy a 'working' and safe boat.

 

 

Rant over !!

 

Good luck with it.

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38 minutes ago, Layla said:

Spot on! Thank you all so much for your advice. Turned out to be the starter motor. The seller helped us source and fit a (probably short term replacement) and so far we’ve successfully got going three times on it. We’re trundling down past Uxbridge now and we’ll stop there and ask some questions. Also going to Willowtree marina to ask for an opinion. 
 

the stern gland which we’ve greased is leaking a fair amount and the bilge is filling up. The bilge pump seems to work very intermittently. We have to press and hold it but it usually ticks off after ten seconds. And the bilge is filling up but it’s not at Worrying levels yet. 
 

we have only a little white smoke from the exhaust. (Outside the boat not rising from the pipe) Is that any cause for concern? It’s very faint. 
 

Thanks all 

 

Exhaust smoke - no worries if it goes away within about1/4 hour of starting but if it persists then as long as it starts easily from cold it might indicate the injectors are getting on a bit. As long as its not annoying see how it develops.

 

Stern gland. The majority of stern glands are adjustable but increasingly modern practice is to fin a different sort. I expect yours is adjustable but for me to explain how you do it I need a photo. A link that might help you is link to my stern gland notes

 

Conventionally stern glands are supposed to drip about once or twice a minute and then when stopped the greaser is used to so it not only lubricates the bearings but also stops the drip. A surveyor has no way of knowing i its just grease stopping the drip unless he takes the boat for a long run but as he needs it out of the water for a hull survey it makes it impossible to check. Unlikely to be anything immediately serious.  Once we know exactly what type of gland you have  advice will follow.

Edited by Tony Brooks

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Nothing urgent then.

Just the leaking stern gland to repack presumably before you sink! Do you know how to do it?  You mention grease, is it a conventional screw down greaser?

Happy boating, enjoy.

TD'

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12 hours ago, Tracy D'arth said:

Nothing urgent then.

Just the leaking stern gland to repack presumably before you sink! Do you know how to do it?  You mention grease, is it a conventional screw down greaser?

Happy boating, enjoy.

TD'

Edit* we found the leak. From the bottom of the oil filter. Tightened it and we are off again. 

 

We both work on property. Surveys are often a massive rip off and waste of time unless you trust the surveyor to be both expert and diligent. We don’t know a boat surveyor like that so hesitated to throw money at that job. But we know what you mean....

 

meanwhile we have trundled along quite happily to London. Then stopped to talk to  willow tree marina. And as soon as we started again, apart from one of us going in the drink, things have gone bad again. We checked the engine oil level before we left  and it was below min. Strange since we topped it up to correct level yesterday morning. We called an advisor who said give it a go probably can’t accurately read oil after running engine all day. So we started. The oil light is flashing on and off again. So now we’ve decided not to risk it and wait overnight and check levels then. So not exactly marooned but high and dry... plus the marina owner says according to the old survey there’s probably 3-5k of Hull works that’s need doing. 
 

if we get these engine problems sorted for say 500. And the Hull works cost 4000. Then we’re in for 22.5k for a fifty foot colecraft 1978, with revitalised structure and engine. We have working interiors,,, shower, pump, 2 batteries, inverter, gas boiler, and pipes and electrical for those... 

 

on a scale of 1-10 how good a position would be in? ;) 

Edited by Layla

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10 minutes ago, Layla said:

So not exactly marooned but high and dry... plus the marina owner says according to the old survey there’s probably 3-5k of Hull works that’s need doing. 
 

Just remember that the survey was a year (or more ) ago, the metal won't have 'got any better' and could be much worse. A forum members boat went from 6mm thickness to 1mm in 18 months.

It wouldn't be wise to rely on the original evaluation being relevant today. It may cost £3-£5k to do the work that was identified on the last survey, but what state is the hull now ?

 

I agree with you with regard to surveyors, I had a survey once and it was a disaster, I tried to take him to court, it cost me £25k to put right what he had missed.

 

However for the last 18 boats I have have bought I have done my own surveys from many years experience, but I would always suggest that anyone who know absolutely nothing about boats employ a surveyor - taking your 'property' analogy, 

 

I know nothing about woodworm, dry-rot, wet-rot, electricity, gas or subsidence but I think "I'll buy that house, it was surveyed some years ago when it was last sold so it must be OK"

 

Things change and a lump of steel floating in water does not improve with age.

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3 hours ago, Layla said:

 

 

on a scale of 1-10 how good a position would be in? ;) 

You are young and having an adventure so you are at a 10.

 

It is unfortunate the boat is giving you challenges but time and a bit of money will fix that but you will never get back your youth. Remember in life you end up regretting the things you didn't do, not the ones you tried.

 

Good luck with everything.

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8 hours ago, Layla said:

Edit* we found the leak. From the bottom of the oil filter. Tightened it and we are off again. 

 

We both work on property. Surveys are often a massive rip off and waste of time unless you trust the surveyor to be both expert and diligent. We don’t know a boat surveyor like that so hesitated to throw money at that job. But we know what you mean....

 

meanwhile we have trundled along quite happily to London. Then stopped to talk to  willow tree marina. And as soon as we started again, apart from one of us going in the drink, things have gone bad again. We checked the engine oil level before we left  and it was below min. Strange since we topped it up to correct level yesterday morning. We called an advisor who said give it a go probably can’t accurately read oil after running engine all day. So we started. The oil light is flashing on and off again. So now we’ve decided not to risk it and wait overnight and check levels then. So not exactly marooned but high and dry... plus the marina owner says according to the old survey there’s probably 3-5k of Hull works that’s need doing. 
 

if we get these engine problems sorted for say 500. And the Hull works cost 4000. Then we’re in for 22.5k for a fifty foot colecraft 1978, with revitalised structure and engine. We have working interiors,,, shower, pump, 2 batteries, inverter, gas boiler, and pipes and electrical for those... 

 

on a scale of 1-10 how good a position would be in? ;) 

I'd give it a 4.

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8 hours ago, Layla said:

Edit* we found the leak. From the bottom of the oil filter. Tightened it and we are off again. 

 

We both work on property. Surveys are often a massive rip off and waste of time unless you trust the surveyor to be both expert and diligent. We don’t know a boat surveyor like that so hesitated to throw money at that job. But we know what you mean....

 

meanwhile we have trundled along quite happily to London. Then stopped to talk to  willow tree marina. And as soon as we started again, apart from one of us going in the drink, things have gone bad again. We checked the engine oil level before we left  and it was below min. Strange since we topped it up to correct level yesterday morning. We called an advisor who said give it a go probably can’t accurately read oil after running engine all day. So we started. The oil light is flashing on and off again. So now we’ve decided not to risk it and wait overnight and check levels then. So not exactly marooned but high and dry... plus the marina owner says according to the old survey there’s probably 3-5k of Hull works that’s need doing. 
 

if we get these engine problems sorted for say 500. And the Hull works cost 4000. Then we’re in for 22.5k for a fifty foot colecraft 1978, with revitalised structure and engine. We have working interiors,,, shower, pump, 2 batteries, inverter, gas boiler, and pipes and electrical for those... 

 

on a scale of 1-10 how good a position would be in? ;) 

 

Normally on a 42 year old boat (in fact over 25 years old) the insurers would demand a 'satisfactory survey' and any problems identified must be corrected and 'signed off' before insurance cover can commence.

 

If your 'year old' survey was used to secure insurance how did you get over the problem that the necessary hull work had not been done ?

 

 

Edit :

Just thought you can get 3rd Party only without having a survey, but obviously, this doesn't cover your boat in case of loss or damage.

Edited by Alan de Enfield

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10 hours ago, Layla said:

Edit* we found the leak. From the bottom of the oil filter. Tightened it and we are off again. 

 

We both work on property. Surveys are often a massive rip off and waste of time unless you trust the surveyor to be both expert and diligent. We don’t know a boat surveyor like that so hesitated to throw money at that job. But we know what you mean....

 

meanwhile we have trundled along quite happily to London. Then stopped to talk to  willow tree marina. And as soon as we started again, apart from one of us going in the drink, things have gone bad again. We checked the engine oil level before we left  and it was below min. Strange since we topped it up to correct level yesterday morning. We called an advisor who said give it a go probably can’t accurately read oil after running engine all day. So we started. The oil light is flashing on and off again. So now we’ve decided not to risk it and wait overnight and check levels then. So not exactly marooned but high and dry... plus the marina owner says according to the old survey there’s probably 3-5k of Hull works that’s need doing. 
 

if we get these engine problems sorted for say 500. And the Hull works cost 4000. Then we’re in for 22.5k for a fifty foot colecraft 1978, with revitalised structure and engine. We have working interiors,,, shower, pump, 2 batteries, inverter, gas boiler, and pipes and electrical for those... 

 

on a scale of 1-10 how good a position would be in? ;) 

"We called an advisor who said give it a go probably can’t accurately read oil after running engine all day. "

I would very strongly suggest you find a much better advisor that does know what they are talking about!

An engine dipstick reading whilst the engine is running, or shortly after stopping(<10 minutes)will give false reading, but after 10 minutes then the reading should be true.

A good habit is to dip the engine oil level before starting the engine, that way you know that the engine is safe, or not to start.

A flashing oil light is BAD.  Generally caused by lack of oil pressure in the engine, due to excessive wear.  Proper attention now may cost, but will be cheaper than a new engine at £7000-£10,000 fitted.

On the scale of 1-10 you are at 2-3, but a full out of water survey is needed urgently to confirm the position.

 

Bod

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In weather like this, cool, damp and grim a lot of engines seem to emit a bit of visible vapour from the exhaust, mine does and I don't worry.

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5 minutes ago, Bod said:

.

A flashing oil light is BAD.  Generally caused by lack of oil pressure in the engine, due to excessive wear.  Proper attention now may cost, but will be cheaper than a new engine at £7000-£10,000 fitted.

 

 

I don't agree with the bit in red. Its far more often an oil pressure switch/sender fault but in this case I fear it is not because of the known loss of oil. notice I said loss, not consumption. At this stage I would suspect an oil leak so its time to get the whole under engine area clean and put newspaper under the engine so you can  see where the drips come from.

 

Was the old starter running in oil when you got it off? If so I fear it may be the rear main bearing oil seal but that very tentative suggestion needs work to confirm. Locate ant oil drips ASAP.

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6 minutes ago, Tony Brooks said:

 

I don't agree with the bit in red. Its far more often an oil pressure switch/sender fault but in this case I fear it is not because of the known loss of oil. notice I said loss, not consumption. At this stage I would suspect an oil leak so its time to get the whole under engine area clean and put newspaper under the engine so you can  see where the drips come from.

 

Was the old starter running in oil when you got it off? If so I fear it may be the rear main bearing oil seal but that very tentative suggestion needs work to confirm. Locate ant oil drips ASAP.

When I was in my youth, no money old A30 a flashing oil light meant the oil level was so low that going round a corner the pump didn't pick any up, Throw another gallon (remember them) and off you went. Very low oil level will make the lamp flash because there is nothing to build up pressure

10 hours ago, Layla said:

Edit* we found the leak. From the bottom of the oil filter. Tightened it and we are off again. 

 

  We called an advisor who said give it a go probably can’t accurately read oil after running engine all day. So we started.  

Find a new advisor.

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4 minutes ago, Tony Brooks said:

 

I don't agree with the bit in red. Its far more often an oil pressure switch/sender fault but in this case I fear it is not because of the known loss of oil. notice I said loss, not consumption. At this stage I would suspect an oil leak so its time to get the whole under engine area clean and put newspaper under the engine so you can  see where the drips come from.

 

Was the old starter running in oil when you got it off? If so I fear it may be the rear main bearing oil seal but that very tentative suggestion needs work to confirm. Locate ant oil drips ASAP.

What ever the cause, it needs putting right before any(more) damage is caused.

There are as you say many causes, some cheap to correct, others not.

If the oil level is correct on the dipstick, and the oil light is flickering, what would your advice be?

 

Bod.

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13 minutes ago, Bod said:

What ever the cause, it needs putting right before any(more) damage is caused.

There are as you say many causes, some cheap to correct, others not.

If the oil level is correct on the dipstick, and the oil light is flickering, what would your advice be?

 

Bod.

Assuming the oil level is correct and there are no significant oil leaks, its not clear to me that it is in this case.

 

1. Ensure correct grade of oil is in use.

 

2. Pressure test with mechanical gauge or change the switch if no gauge kit available.

 

3. As this is a BMC then if the switch did not cure it or if the oil pressure was low, particularly on idle check the oil pressure relief valve is not jammed open. Would also take this step on any engine with a PRV that can be accessed from outside the engine.

 

4. Lift engine for internal investigative.

 

 

 

 

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21 minutes ago, Bod said:

If the oil level is correct on the dipstick, and the oil light is flickering, what would your advice be?

 

Check the oil is not contaminated by leaking diesel, lowering the viscosity and warning about low oil pressure.

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1 hour ago, Tony Brooks said:

1. Ensure correct grade of oil is in use.

In particular this. What grade of oil is being used? If it is some motor oil picked up from a garage, then it is almost certainly one for modern car engines and may be too thin for an old fashioned thing like a BMC as the low viscosity means it can't build up oil pressure properly if the engine is a bit worn. Is there a grade on the can? It might say something like 5W30, or 10W40. A BMC is better off with something more like a 15W40. If the oil has been leaking a lot and being replenished, then the oil in there is mostly going to be fresh stuff now.

 

An easy and quick check before going on to the harder and costlier ones.

 

Jen

Edited by Jen-in-Wellies

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6 hours ago, Tony Brooks said:

Assuming the oil level is correct and there are no significant oil leaks, its not clear to me that it is in this case.

 

1. Ensure correct grade of oil is in use.

 

2. Pressure test with mechanical gauge or change the switch if no gauge kit available.

 

3. As this is a BMC then if the switch did not cure it or if the oil pressure was low, particularly on idle check the oil pressure relief valve is not jammed open. Would also take this step on any engine with a PRV that can be accessed from outside the engine.

 

4. Lift engine for internal investigative.

 

 

 

 

There was a comment oil leak from the filter some time back.

 

image.png.434adaeb722d17848b8ebc6946d15b21.png

Edited by ditchcrawler

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Just now, ditchcrawler said:

There was a comment oil leak from the filter some time back.

I know and it seem the oil level is still going down so who knows what is going on. I would definitely be cleaning up and looking for oil leaks.

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9 hours ago, Jen-in-Wellies said:

In particular this. What grade of oil is being used? If it is some motor oil picked up from a garage, then it is almost certainly one for modern car engines and may be too thin for an old fashioned thing like a BMC as the low viscosity means it can't build up oil pressure properly if the engine is a bit worn. Is there a grade on the can? It might say something like 5W30, or 10W40. A BMC is better off with something more like a 15W40. If the oil has been leaking a lot and being replenished, then the oil in there is mostly going to be fresh stuff now.

 

An easy and quick check before going on to the harder and costlier ones.

 

Jen

Does the OP need additional info about mineral, multigrade, synthetic, semi-synthetic oils, specifications etc. 

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