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Newbie - Advice on this boat please


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https://www.apolloduck.com/boat.phtml?id=648125

I been doing a fair bit of research on here. Recently. And over the past 20 years I've dreamt of buying one.

 

Seems Springers have a bad reputation ?

 

Pro's ( to me)

Very detailed write up.

Sounds like the boat has been well maintained and cared for.

Has been over-plated. (Is that a con as well as a pro ? More weight)

Well equipped.

Within my budget.

Easy for me to get back to my home area in the south than one in the midlands or the north.

 

Con's

It's a Springer (is the reputation entirely deserved ?)

Old engine sounds like it need some work

 

Is this boat worth this money ? To be honest most local-ish boats I'm seeing for around this price seem to have more issues than this one as presented.

I would want a full survey before buying.

Any advice gratefully received.

 

Edited by lee_2
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Unless I've missed something is the only way to get hot water  by using the immersion heater ? That would be fine in a marina but not suitable for cruising . I have no experience of using a  generator to heat water but I would have thought it totally impractical and very costly . I wouldn't pay that money for it .

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4 minutes ago, Troyboy said:

Unless I've missed something is the only way to get hot water  by using the immersion heater ? That would be fine in a marina but not suitable for cruising . I have no experience of using a  generator to heat water but I would have thought it totally impractical and very costly . I wouldn't pay that money for it .

You make a good point. The listing does say "There is plumbing and pipe work in place on the engine to supply hot water to calorifier and the pipes run the length of the boat so installing a calorifier would be straightforward if required". But that is more expense.

Generator onboard to power the immersion though.

God this is hard work. Hard to judge value when so many variables. (And my lack of experience)

Thanks for your input.

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The blurb states " Can be hard to start in cold weather " loosely translated this means " Its knackered and will not start " and also why is one glow plug missing and easily fixed of they have supposedly maintained it well? Its a LOT of money for an old springer an you can do better.

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Springers were the narrowboat equivalent of Skodas of their day. Cheap, cheerful and got many people afloat who couldn't have afforded a better quality boat. They were built with thinner plate than others, and as they are all now ageing, many have got uninsurably thin. This one has been overplated. If the job was well done then it will be fine. If it was a quick bodge done 9 years ago it may now be in a bit of a state again. Only a decent hull survey will tell you.

BMC 1.5 is an ageing engine, and should really not be raw water cooled (as in canal water passing through the engine). But if it is heat exchanger cooled that is fine. As engines they are pretty bomb proof and spares are still available.

Ad says everything for engine heating of calorifier is in place. You really should get that all connected so you can use free engine heat to heat the domestic hot water.

Interior and exterior look well kept. "London white" look typical of London liveaboard CCers.

I think this may be advertised at London prices. You might do better looking further afield and then bring the boat nearer to where you want to be (as the current owners did).

Edited by David Mack
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Springers are lovely if you get the right one! A survey should tell you if it is.

Many engines, be they on cars or boats, are harder to start in cold weather. But I wonder, if the boat has been as well maintained as the owner claims, why the glow plug has not been replaced. Ask him.

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32 minutes ago, mrsmelly said:

The blurb states " Can be hard to start in cold weather " loosely translated this means " Its knackered and will not start " and also why is one glow plug missing and easily fixed of they have supposedly maintained it well? Its a LOT of money for an old springer an you can do better.

Yeah I did point that out about the glow plug. Searched and it's £25 I think for a new one. I'd just fix it ?

Thanks for your input. Valuable.

13 minutes ago, Athy said:

why the glow plug has not been replaced. Ask him.

Already have. No reply yet (Has been some initial communication) But thank you.

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2 minutes ago, lee_2 said:

Yeah I did point that out about the glow plug. Searched and it's £25 I think for a new one. I'd just fix it ?

Thanks for your input. Valuable.

If it was easy it would be already done.  There will be problems in getting the new one in.

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37 minutes ago, David Mack said:

Interior and exterior look well kept. "London white" look typical of London liveaboard CCers.

I think this may be advertised at London prices. You might do better looking further afield and then bring the boat nearer to where you want to be (as the current owners did).

Yeah that's why it stood out to me. Looks neat in and out. (keeping book / cover in mind)

And it is raw water cooled.

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Just now, system 4-50 said:

If it was easy it would be already done.  There will be problems in getting the new one in.

Makes sense. Though the listing does say "This could be easily rectified.".

I'll see what they say.

Going to see a different boat tomorrow.

Slightly different league

2003 - 50 x 10 Liverpool boats widebeam

https://narrowboats.apolloduck.com/boat/liverpool-boats-50-widebeam/642632

Pink interior would have to go !

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38 minutes ago, mrsmelly said:

...also why is one glow plug missing and easily fixed of they have supposedly maintained it well?

This ^^^^ tells me that it's been neglected badly, because if the owner can't be bothered to do the blindingly obvious when they're trying to sell the thing, or maybe hasn't the knowledge or skills to do so, you can't possibly believe it's been otherwise well maintained. Find yourself a boat someone has loved and cared for. 

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1 minute ago, Tracy D'arth said:

I would bet that the glow plug has been broken off, getting a new one in will be a drama involving removing the cylinder head and Ricardo chamber. Expensive.

 

Its a plated over shed at castle price, you can do better.

Much appreciated. Balance so far is negative. I submit to superior wisdom. I'll give it a miss I think.

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30 minutes ago, doratheexplorer said:

Just wondering why you're considering a 27k boat when your budget stretches to 53k?

Fair question.

I was originally considering buying a 60ft x 12.6ft sailaway. Either commissioning one to be built or I've seen some ready built for about 53,000.

Then after reading on here saw the advice is generally to buy secondhand first. Plus being realistic decided that it was probably a lot foolish to start out with a big new boat when I've no experience of piloting a craft of that size single-handed (and very limited experience of smaller narrowboats), or fitting one out, though I am quite handy. But the intention was to slum it on the boat while I fit it out around me. After thinking it through decided I was maybe overstretching myself and capabilities ?

Hit upon another possible plan of buying a cheaper boat, then maybe after a a couple or three years trying to find a marina / yard where I could keep a newly commissioned widebeam sailaway on hard standing and fit it out while living on the smaller one. Once the new boat is liveable and goes in the water sell the smaller boat.

Then saw the boat I linked to and decided to go and have a look. I have my reservations already. Pink is horrible. Bedroom will need to go to front and stove moving. Looks a bit uncared for, tatty. Doing nothing tomorrow so will go and have a look. What do you think for the price ?

My full on dream is the self fitted 60ft x 12.6ft widebeam with electric motors, lots of solar, large LiFePO4 battery bank and either a LPG or diesel generator for backup power. Don't blame me for being a dreamer but I'm also trying to be realistic!

 

Lockdown has made me realise I'm getting nowhere. Fifty years old. Shelling out rent is like burning money. Can't afford to buy a house and never will round here (West Berkshire).

 

I've still got a very open mind about boats and considering my options. Expect more newbie questions 😉

Edited by lee_2
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Being realistic, you could realistically by a very nice, very liveable narrowboat for 50k and go and have lovely adventures on it.  You will always be able to make modifications and improvements to it.  If you pay 27k for that Springer, you'll end up continually throwing money at it until you have none left for your sailaway and you'll finish up with a knackered old springer which you've spent all your money on.  And that's not even factoring in the cost of keeping a widebeam on hardstanding for years at the same time.  As you've seen the widebeams out there for 50k will also typically have some glaring flaws. 

 

I'd look around for a well kept, well specced narrowboat around 55'-65' long.  There's a lot of choice of those, and if you've got the money ready, you should be able to strike a great deal.

Edited by doratheexplorer
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32 minutes ago, lee_2 said:

Then saw the boat I linked to and decided to go and have a look. I have my reservations already. Pink is horrible. Bedroom will need to go to front and stove moving. Looks a bit uncared for, tatty. Doing nothing tomorrow so will go and have a look.

It may be worth giving the Broker / seller a call as many of them are closed as 'going to view a boat' is not really "essential travel"

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1 hour ago, Alan de Enfield said:

It may be worth giving the Broker / seller a call as many of them are closed as 'going to view a boat' is not really "essential travel"

Already have. As it's appointment only. I think the loophole is that viewing flats to rent and houses to buy is allowed. Why should a liveaboard be different ? But don't want to descend into politics. They are open is all I know.

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