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Buying a narrowboat without a hull survey


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I am thinking of buying a 47’ narrowboat built in 1991 by r&d fabrications. It’s was last surveyed in 2013 with all the works carried out, two pack epoxy blacking need renewing 2020.

I am intending to reblacking the hull next year so it can be surveyed then, so any advice?

 

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I am thinking of buying a 47’ narrowboat built in 1991 by r&d fabrications. It’s was last surveyed in 2013 with all the works carried out, two pack epoxy blacking need renewing 2020.

I am intending to reblacking the hull next year so it can be surveyed then, so any advice?

 

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1 minute ago, Nightwatch said:

Up to you of course. But at a very high risk. I wouldn't. Who did the survey in 2013? Who did the remedial works. Did the surveyor sign of the works. Anyway, I just wouldn't. 

Wot he said above.

A survey (shouldn't) be only for the hull outside. There could be some nasties lurking within; fitout you can see, but engine, water tank, and so on.

Are you knowledgeable enough about narrowboats to spot problems?

 

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A lot can happen in 5 years. If nothing else get a hull only survey. If your knowledgeable on boats and can give it your own inspection.

My biggest fear would be galvanic corrosion if on shore power at a mooring. If it has spent time in a Marina check if a GI is fitted. 

James.

Edited by canals are us?
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20 minutes ago, Chico said:

I am thinking of buying a 47’ narrowboat built in 1991 by r&d fabrications. It’s was last surveyed in 2013 with all the works carried out, two pack epoxy blacking need renewing 2020.

I am intending to reblacking the hull next year so it can be surveyed then, so any advice?

 

 

Yes. This is not a technical issue but a personal finance issue. 

If you can afford for this boat to be a horrible mistake (which it probably won't be, but possibly will) then buy without they survey. If a £10k bill for replating and re-bottoming would ruin you, then prolly best to get a survey before handing over your money. 

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4 minutes ago, Mike the Boilerman said:

Is there an echo in here? I thought I just answered this thread but my answer is nowhere to be seen.

I saw yours on it's own - with no sign of mine (drat it I forgot to press enter) - converse to yours - there must be a duplicate somewhere.

A nice admin man will surely be along shortly.

 

Poo somebody got there first....

Edited by OldGoat
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56 minutes ago, Chico said:

I am thinking of buying a 47’ narrowboat built in 1991

Being over 25 years old you may find that your insurers will demand a survey.

Some companies want surveys at 20 years, some 25 years and the odd one 30 years.

If you are going to need a survey anyway to insure it you may as well have one before purchase,

 

Seems little point in buying it, having it for a year and then having it surveyed - you appear to be "going at this arse over tit"

Edited by Alan de Enfield
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Being over 25 years old you may find that your insurers will demand a survey.

Some companies want surveys at 20 years, some 25 years and the odd one 30 years.

If you are going to need a survey anyway to insure it you may as well have one before purchase,

 

Seems little point in buying it, having it for a year and then having it surveyed - you appear to be "going at this arse over tit"

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If you can't afford a survey now, can you afford 2k epoxy blacking in a year's time? The reason being, if the boat is already blacked in 2k, then you go to normal/cheap bitumen based blacking, to revert back to 2k blacking is a whole lot more money and time (all the bitumen-based would need to come off, eg by grit blasting or similar). Just to clarify, you can apply bitumen blacking over existing 2k with no issues; but if you apply fresh 2k over existing bitumen it won't stick (hence the extra prep needed).

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A couple of points, you need to know what 'Works were carried out', also personally I would like to see it out of the water if I was buying it, you don't have to have a surveyor to see overplating or heavily pitted steel. Thing is though that it is all too easy to convince yourself that everything is OK so a grumpy pessimistic friend is always useful so find yourself a glass half empty friend (i.e. a realist) and ask his or her opinion. If you look at your average skip the bottom will be awful, that is a worst case scenario, unpainted, rusting from both sides, full of corrosive junk, and being dragged about all over the place. A boat should be better than that but you do need to know how much better. 

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You do need to see the boat out of the water definitely! 

  if you know enough about steel you could satisfy yourself of the hull condition. If not get a survey.   Imho a fair few surveyors are certifiably insane  but most of them will let you know if the boat is going to sink or not in the near future, which is always handy to know.  And whilst it is out you can touch up your blacking and go back in safe in the knowledge that blacking is something to worry about waaaayyy off in the future

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  • 2 years later...

Hello Everyone,

 

Someone has tried to scam me out of buying a boat. It happened on 14Th Monday December 2020. Is a Liverpool boat, said to be built in 2006 (but it was built in 1999).

 

Three weeks earlier he was trying to force me to buy it without a survey but I could manage to do it paying 200£ (which I lost) as a deposit. We agree that I would get back the money if the deal didn't work so I trusted him (so naïve, I know).

 

The thing is that he is trying to sell (40000£) a narrowboat around London (built by Liverpool boat builder) built in 1999, saying that it was built in 2006. After the survey, the surveyor recommended me to ask for the HIN plate number (which it isn't anywhere in the hull plate). When I asked him for the HIN/CE plate number he was reluctant to give me it, but I said I wouldn't make any deal if I didn't see it, so he finally show me all the papers and I saw the HIN plate number which indicate that the boat was built in 1999. 

 

For me it do matter the year in which was built as the older the boat the more problems get and for sure the cheaper should be, hence don't try to sell me an overpriced boat from 1999 saying that was built in 2006. 

 

Be careful folk, he is trying to sell it around London, I wouldn't buy any boat without the HIN plate number, would you buy a car without the Identifier on the car chassis? if you don't get that unique identifier anyone can make up the year in which the boat was built. And for sure I wouldn't buy a boat without a recent survey.

 

I really hope this experience helps to someone to not commit the same mistake.

 

Best Wishes,

Antonio.

 

 

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16 minutes ago, Antonio Lopez said:

Hello Everyone,

 

Someone has tried to scam me out of buying a boat. It happened on 14Th Monday December 2020. Is a Liverpool boat, said to be built in 2006 (but it was built in 1999).

 

Three weeks earlier he was trying to force me to buy it without a survey but I could manage to do it paying 200£ (which I lost) as a deposit. We agree that I would get back the money if the deal didn't work so I trusted him (so naïve, I know).

 

The thing is that he is trying to sell (40000£) a narrowboat around London (built by Liverpool boat builder) built in 1999, saying that it was built in 2006. After the survey, the surveyor recommended me to ask for the HIN plate number (which it isn't anywhere in the hull plate). When I asked him for the HIN/CE plate number he was reluctant to give me it, but I said I wouldn't make any deal if I didn't see it, so he finally show me all the papers and I saw the HIN plate number which indicate that the boat was built in 1999. 

 

For me it do matter the year in which was built as the older the boat the more problems get and for sure the cheaper should be, hence don't try to sell me an overpriced boat from 1999 saying that was built in 2006. 

 

Be careful folk, he is trying to sell it around London, I wouldn't buy any boat without the HIN plate number, would you buy a car without the Identifier on the car chassis? if you don't get that unique identifier anyone can make up the year in which the boat was built. And for sure I wouldn't buy a boat without a recent survey.

 

I really hope this experience helps to someone to not commit the same mistake.

 

Best Wishes,

Antonio.

 

 

Not all boats have a HIN number. Those  DIY built outside the RCD did not need one because they were not built to the RCD regulations. I think that may have altered over the last few years. Also for all you know he might have been fitting out ashore for those vital  seven years. t takes a long time to do a good job. The RCD talks about when the boat is first put into service, not the build date.

 

20 year old boat for forty grand would ring alarm to me, too expensive, especially as its a budget hull builder.

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Forty grand isn't unusual for a 20 year old boat in today's market if it's in good condition (and about 10% less than I've seen people asking for Liverpool Boats that probably actually were built in 2006) but the seller doesn't sound like someone I'd trust,

 

FWIW I found out whilst completing my purchase that my boat was manufactured a year earlier than advertised but it turned out that it spent about a year as the fitter's showboat (I even have a copy of a magazine review with pictures)

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12 minutes ago, enigmatic said:

Forty grand isn't unusual for a 20 year old boat in today's market if it's in good condition (and about 10% less than I've seen people asking for Liverpool Boats that probably actually were built in 2006) but the seller doesn't sound like someone I'd trust,

 

FWIW I found out whilst completing my purchase that my boat was manufactured a year earlier than advertised but it turned out that it spent about a year as the fitter's showboat (I even have a copy of a magazine review with pictures)

Happens all the time, I've seen boats 7 years in the build. Bottom line is whether its worth it to you, its not like cars that are now disposable so the year of first registration matters.

A good boat will last far far longer so the real age of a hull is lest important providing it is in good condition. Which is where the survey comes in.

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1 minute ago, Tracy D'arth said:

Happens all the time, I've seen boats 7 years in the build. Bottom line is whether its worth it to you, its not like cars that are now disposable so the year of first registration matters.

A good boat will last far far longer so the real age of a hull is lest important providing it is in good condition. Which is where the survey comes in.

yeah, I didn't bat an eyelid when I found out my boat was a year older, not least because I'd found out other things the vendor hadn't told me which were all good

 

I'd be a bit more wary if the difference in advertised age was a third of the boat's age and instead of talking proudly about he'd spent seven years fitting it out the seller discouraged me from getting a survey and didn't want me to see his paperwork

That said I have no idea if my boat even has a HIN number (they were introduced in 1998, the year it was built) and don't particularly care.

 

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47 minutes ago, enigmatic said:

That said I have no idea if my boat even has a HIN number (they were introduced in 1998, the year it was built) and don't particularly care.

As long as you have the RCD certificate of compliance, you will be OK.

The hull has two HIN's one of which is in a hidden location that only the manufacturer knows.

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6 minutes ago, Alan de Enfield said:

As long as you have the RCD certificate of compliance, you will be OK.

The hull has two HIN's one of which is in a hidden location that only the manufacturer knows.

 

Or just claim it's a 1997 when you want to sell it ...

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15 hours ago, enigmatic said:

Forty grand isn't unusual for a 20 year old boat in today's market if it's in good condition (and about 10% less than I've seen people asking for Liverpool Boats that probably actually were built in 2006) but the seller doesn't sound like someone I'd trust,

 

FWIW I found out whilst completing my purchase that my boat was manufactured a year earlier than advertised but it turned out that it spent about a year as the fitter's showboat (I even have a copy of a magazine review with pictures)

That's the matter, all kind of alarms were ringing on my head as soon as I discovered he was lying about the age and paperwork, I stopped trusting him. If someone lie to you about one thing for sure there were more lies about what he told me about the boat, so maybe the boat was that good or not...

 

I should have run away since early when he pushed me to buy it without a survey, maybe that meant that was trying to hide something. Anyway, another experience that perhaps helps other buyers. 

 

Also, I would like to express gratitude to all people who write here, I have been reading and learning from them a lot. Thank you so much.

 

Best Wishes,

Antonio.

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16 hours ago, enigmatic said:

Forty grand isn't unusual for a 20 year old boat in today's market if it's in good condition (and about 10% less than I've seen people asking for Liverpool Boats that probably actually were built in 2006) but the seller doesn't sound like someone I'd trust,

 

FWIW I found out whilst completing my purchase that my boat was manufactured a year earlier than advertised but it turned out that it spent about a year as the fitter's showboat (I even have a copy of a magazine review with pictures)

I am sorry, but I disagree as I have been looking for a boat for months and I saw a lot of Liverpool boats in better condition, built in around 2006 for 37k... Indeed, the day after I saw an ad in gumtree for a Liverpool boat built in 2006 far away in better condition (indoor) and nicer, the exterior needed some paint though. Obviously, someone else took it -not even having a survey- (I don't really understand this kind of actions, how can you spend 37k without knowing if you would need to welding up or over-plating the hull?)

 

 

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