Ericson 30+ (1987) for $8,500 (Southern California)

Matt Fish

Member I
Thank you for all the great replies -- very much appreciated.

Planning to get a detailed survey. Also planning to polish the fuel and get a diesel mechanic in to learn more and see if it can be run safely.

Thanks again to everyone reading and commenting on this thread. I will post some more photos of the compression post issue tomorrow.
 

K2MSmith

Sustaining Member
My U25 engine didn’t look all that great when I bought my boat (almost 40 years old) but I spent about 1200 to have a mechanic go through it and change out everything. (Belts, hoses, filters, fluids, impeller etc. ). She starts cold on first turnover and is purring like a kitten now. I get a little more vibration than with a new Yanmar we had on a leased Beneteau we had, but the boat gets 5-6 kts on motor and runs reasonably cool. My goal is to keep it running as long as I can until I do a full electric refit.
 

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
You can recycle the fuel if you like (that is, discard it at a recycling center), then add five new test gallons. Polishing doesn't apply here.

I'd try to start it with the existing fuel. Do the batteries/ starter / electrical connections work? Lots of typical reasons, many of them harmless, why it wouldn;t start.

Frankly, it's the owner's responsibility to try to start it, or to say why it won't start. It is not the buyer's role to pay $250 for an engine survey to inform the owner what's wrong with his engine. As a practical matter, you cant set a price for a boat without knowing the engine at least runs.

The owner may not be knowledgeable and need gentle explaining. Spelling Ericson "Erickson" in the ad means not paying attention.
 

Alan Gomes

Contributing Partner
In order to test the engine, why not just buy a cheap plastic jerry jug and route the intake and return lines into the opening? This will allow you to test the engine with fuel that you know is clean. You will probably also need to purchase some additional hose, but that's cheap.

BTW: I have a spare Yanmar 1GM in my garage and that's what I do to run it periodically.
 

Matt Fish

Member I
Engine update: The owner has agreed to prove the engine runs and will pay for that. (Seems obvious in retrospect.) I'll post an update after that happens.

Dave G.: Yes, it's been in a slip at least since 1995! Amazing. I'll post a few photos of the bilge in the next message or two.
 

Matt Fish

Member I
Compression post photos: The head door doesn't close, and the privacy door that goes across from port to starboard doesn't close. These could be two different issues. I'm point these out to the surveyor.
 

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Matt Fish

Member I
Photos of the interior showing general condition of the cabin. The water damage around the port lights is on both sides but especially bad on the starboard side. The exterior of the port lights looks fine -- but obviously is not sealed. The owner reported that water never dripped from these saturated spots. The cabin sole near the head is also water damaged (but dry now). The headliner is in great shape overall, except for a few zippers that are corroded shut.
 

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Matt Fish

Member I
A few bilge photos for those interested in such things. There is about 3/4" of oily water in the first picture (aft). The second picture is dry but has oil residue (forward). I wiped away the scum and the bolts and nuts seem nice and healthy.

Sort of weird -- I found an earth worm in the area forward of the two main bilge compartments. It was wriggling around. Tried to show its (former) home in the third picture, which looks like a small pile of dirt. So, yeah, that seems like a sign of some seriously rotten wood elements. I'll point this out to the surveyor. (You can see the ex-worm in the second picture, may it rest in peace.)
 

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Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
Matt, at a glance this boat has fatal neglect problems. Given even the few photos so far, I would not pay a surveyor.

There are lots of boats between Ventura and San Diego, more than usual because of Covid. Look at a dozen before you buy one.

Start with a yacht broker, even if his listings are more than you want to spend. The education will be enoyable and useful.

Other E30+ specimens here: https://www.sailboatlistings.com/cg...D=*&sb=5&so=descend&manufacturer=Ericson&nh=2
 
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1911tex

Sustaining Member
Holy Moly...like Christian said! Run like the Dickens! Or tell the owner you will take it off his hands for $10k...that is, the owner pays YOU! Even at that...whew.....
 

Loren Beach

O34 - Portland, OR
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
As much as I like that EY model, agree that there will be other good boats waiting.
That one will need a lot of work.
Too bad you do not have a friend with an F250 and a multi-axle trailer... That O-911 for sale in Olympia looks really good.
 

Matt Fish

Member I
Sage advice and I'll take it. Thanks again everybody on this thread for your perspectives on this boat. Going to keep searching for the right boat.

Christian, that's an excellent idea. I'll start looking with a yacht broker to broaden my horizons. Enjoyable and useful -- sign me up.
 

bigd14

Sustaining Member
Blogs Author
Agree that its a project boat. Mine looked about like that too, and she cleaned up quite nicely. But it took way more effort than anticipated. Keep looking unless you want to spend the next year or three working on the boat rather than sailing it.
 

K2MSmith

Sustaining Member
Sage advice and I'll take it. Thanks again everybody on this thread for your perspectives on this boat. Going to keep searching for the right boat.

Christian, that's an excellent idea. I'll start looking with a yacht broker to broaden my horizons. Enjoyable and useful -- sign me up.
If you can find a purchase broker that’s willing to work with you in your price range. I tried find a broker in the Bay Area and none were very interested because the amount of effort it takes to search and transact a deal on a 30k boat is the same for a 100k boat except they make very little commission doing it . They all did say they would keep an eye out and one even referred me to a marine title service (Triton) to transact the title and coast guard paperwork for me when I found a boat myself - which I would highly recommend. It was well worth the 300.00 fee . Either way , make sure you have a proper purchase agreement in place before doing a survey . That protects you if the survey goes south and also commits the owner to sell the boat to you if all goes well . A basic hull survey with haulout can easily run 1k. A broker can do most of that for you, but I ended up doing most of it myself ( including the purchase contract ) .
 
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Matt Fish

Member I
If you can find a purchase broker that’s willing to work with you in your price range. I tried find a broker in the Bay Area and none were very interested because the amount of effort it takes to search and transact a deal on a 30k boat is the same for a 100k boat except they make very little commission doing it . They all did say they would keep an eye out and one even referred me to a marine title service (Triton) to transact the title and coast guard paperwork for me when I found a boat myself - which I would highly recommend. It was well worth the 300.00 fee . Either way , make sure you have a proper purchase agreement in place before doing a survey . That protects you if the survey goes south and also commits the owner to sell the boat to you if all goes well . A basic hull survey with haulout can easily run 1k. A broker can do most of that for you, but I ended up doing most of it myself ( including the purchase contract ) .
Excellent points. A broker I've talked with let it slip that he receives a flat fee of $3,500 for boats in my price range. It's only one data point; it may not hold true with other brokers. I'll take a close look at Triton. And I'll get a purchase agreement in place before any survey on a future boat. In any event, your experience is helpful here.
 

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
The minimum, as it was explained to me by a broker, is to get salesmen to show the boat. Otherwise their share of the eventual commission would be so small as to not be an incentive. The price of course is a negotiation, and a key to that is length of time on the market.
 

K2MSmith

Sustaining Member
Excellent points. A broker I've talked with let it slip that he receives a flat fee of $3,500 for boats in my price range. It's only one data point; it may not hold true with other brokers. I'll take a close look at Triton. And I'll get a purchase agreement in place before any survey on a future boat. In any event, your experience is helpful here.
If you find a brokerage that will do it for that amount, including setting up the purchase agreement, coordinating the document transfer and weeding out all the bad apple examples, it’s definitely worth it . I wasted a lot of time with flakey sellers , junk boats and doing my own contracts . I do consulting so I’m accustomed to some of this but it took a lot of time. Would be happy to share any experience knowledge gained on my first boat purchase ( no charge :)
 

billie williams

Member II
Holy cow, step away! I guess you're already acknowledging that - but just adding my 2 cents since I own one of these lovelies...there are always more boats for sale.
 

G Kiba

Member III
Dave, Is the current owner "aging out" (like all of us in time)? Or has he past away and a survivor is selling it? I know that age was a factor with my purchase, except the previous owner loved maintaining his boat as much as sailing it. On the other hand, my friend's husband passed away last March and in his last few years of owning the boat had let it fall into dis-repair. And he was a noted surveyor in the Bay Area. His widow ended up fixing it up and selling it to a nice couple in SoCal.
 
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