Hello everyone. I have been a long time lurker as a guest here and just this weekend decided to take the plunge, come out from behind the shadows and create an actual user account.
The information available in all facets of this website is extremely useful and I thank all of those who have contributed to the aggregate.
A bit about me: I grew up in a coastal town in New England and spent a great deal of my youth surrounded by boats. Fast forward 30 years, I have a wonderful wife, and two small children (7 and 4). Over the last several years we toyed with the idea of a vacation home by the beach. Here in New England, that means a cuboidal residency in a glorified tenement building for half a million bucks.
This time last year we decided the boating life was for us. While a boat could cost half a million bucks if we buy the wrong one, I'll take that any day over buying an apartment 3 blocks from the beach.
We have unanimously fallen in love with the Commander 47. We have been searching the usual haunts (YachtWorld, BoatTrader, Craigslist and local marinas (before the COVID-19 restrictions). What we are finding is a very wide swing in asking prices. Now before I get flamed, I understand pricing follows condition (in most cases), so a vessel that is half-sunk in the harbor will likely have a favorable asking price to another that is a showpiece. However, what I am seeing is a swing from around $25K to $125K for Commander 45/47s out there.
I guess my real question, again I know value is a subjective thing, where is the market on these boats right now? What is the market doing amidst the pandemic? Any insight would be great, and I thank you all in advance.
If I was you I would see if Lee Dahlen https://glassicboatworks.com would come up and do the survey if he has time. If you don't get a experienced 427 person to look at it you may be calling him to fix it,. Call or text or e mail Matt Cowles in Annapolis as he has Lee take care of his 427's,
John Mario said:
Can anyone recommend a good engine surveyor in the CT area? Many who i've talked don't deal with these older engines.
Good luck with that, I've been trying to make contact with Lee for a month now....
I know it’s frustrating, but be patient with him, Jim. With all the varying levels of shutdowns, he’s been trying to keep food on the table locally and is just now getting to his travel customers - some of whom are just launching. I’m not trying to be an apologist, but he’s probably got a dozen guys with a punch list right now.
I sympathize with anyone in the boat business right now. Its a tick past memorial day weekend, and with COVID, everything is a few weeks behind from what I've been told (maintenance, launches, etc.). I talked to a couple of places up here, but they are "plug in the laptop" type guys, which lets face it, comprises arguably 75% of everything out there. I'm wondering if I can do the inspection myself. Now before I get totally flamed, I have built several engines ground-up and resurrected many barn find/haven't run in 30 years type cars. My bigger question is if its a conflict of interest with the seller. If you were selling, would you be okay with the buyer pulling plugs and scoping holes?
Its such a small world with these boats. Do you know anything about the history of this boat? All i've been told by the broker is that two owners ago owned it for 20 years. Thier son got a bunch of work done to make it fit for travel down the Hudson and out to CT. The boat was pulled, put on the hard and then put up for sale. The last owner bought it but left it on the hard and never did a thing (for the last two years). The marina said it was fully winterized when it hit the hard....
Tim Toth said:
Captain John .... Before your sea trial consider pulling the engine oil & tranny oil dipsticks "before launching & starting" those engines . The sample oil on a clean white paper towel will tell you how abused the previous owner treated those items before the boat was stored . On sea trial day " if they start " dockside pull the dipsticks again to check for the " milkshake visual test " on engine & tranny dipsticks for water in the oil . If water is present , no need for a sea trial .
A handheld temp gun will be needed to check for proper cooling . Since that Commander has not been serviced for a long time the impellors are a serious issue for even starting the engines dockside .
I remember that 41 Commander on Lake Erie in the Lorain ,Ohio area from 2 owners ago . Previous owner care and knowledge of the boat is always a concern when looking to purchase .
You could be headed to uncharted shallow water but keep us posted .
Tim / with mighty 427`s
I read and have been told all the above about,Impellars, Changing oil,fluids prior to testing or riding a boat that sat.
Last year I had a 338 commander, sat a year and before that was on the hard a bunch of years. PO,did some shady things,BUT, We started it on the hard, Hauled it and dropped her in and drove to my Marina,only 5miles, Changed nothing, had no issues.
My recent 47 commander, I checked everything ,ran her on the hard, She is diesel,other was gas,dropped her in last week after 7years, Except for me screwing around with the Return valves, We ran her 18hrs total, to Longport NJ, no overheating, Pressure was good.
Not saying don't Check everything, But run her on the hard, Check everything out, Get her splashed, Run her again to temp, Check everything, Sea trial, Have your thermal gun and keep an Eye for leaks, Banging from trans,and engine...
My cousins NEW 300K broke down the first week, again 3 weeks later 75 miles out.
Its the nature of the beast..
Captain John ........... I don`t know much history on the 41 Commander from Lorain Ohio . It was a a dock queen from when I saw it every Summer on Lake Erie . What broker has the listing ? I just can`t believe it sat for 2 years outside and not covered . The 41 flushdeck models were prone to leaks above the stern cabin bunks do to the water that would puddle on the stern deck above . The deck was not a shoebox lid design fastened to the hull mold . The hull mold came up and was curled up and over to meet the deck mold with the teak toerail placed over the joint . I feel that caused leakage over time with the stanchion bases in those areas . The vertical pipe is threaded into the stanchion base and is an area the water runs down the threaded pipe into the stern cabin .
From the "been there, done that" perspective.
I have referenced my experience with a '75 Luhrs 320 many times on this sight. I acquired the Luhrs after it had sat on the hard for 6 years, uncovered. First thing to consider with gas engines, whatever is in the fuel tanks is no longer gas and needs to be pumped out and disposed of. I used Clean Harbors to remove the "turpentine" while the boat was on land. If you wait until the boat is in the water, price goes up significantly. From your experience with old cars, I'm guessing you know you will probably have to rebuild the carbs. I had Carter AFB's sitting on Chrysler 318's, rebuilt both. Changed the oil did a complete tune up and those engines fired up and purred. This was also done on land, with a hose pushing water through the engines. Once the boat was in the water, I realized I needed impellers. Other then being prepared to take on a million little projects, invest in Magic Erasers, Simple Green, and Tylex with bleach.
As far as doing the engine assessment yourself. Many marine surveyors do not do mechanical inspections. When I purchased my 382, I used an accredited marine surveyor to survey the boat. I had my son evaluate the engines, original 454 Crusaders, before, during and after sea trials. He was very thorough. This is part of the survey and the seller should not object if you choose to do this yourself.