One lapse in judgment was not enough with the purchase of the 23 GMC, Now that it is nearing completion I decided that I needed a new project so have purchased a 48' Tollycraft. Unfortunately it looks nothing like the picture above which was taken about a year before it burned. I will try to add some pictures as I begin to work on it.
This boat had a fire in early 2007, I think in January or February and ended up on one of the auction sites specializing in insurance salvage. It was in southern California and so on returning from out winter vacation in Arizona we made a point of coming up the California coast so that I could look at it. For some unknown reason I saw some potential in it so put in a bid to see what would happen and then got in an active bidding contest and when the bidding was over later in March I had a boat.
Unfortunately I did not do as good of inspection as I should have, I was concentrating on the fire damage and worrying about the engines which required getting oil samples. I did talk to the previous owner and although initially he would not talk about it he later gave a very good report on its overall condition. I also had a surveyor look at it and no major problems other than the fire damage showed up. However after making the purchase and going down to take the fly bridge off for transport it became obvious that there was a lot more than fire damage to contend with, The boat had been stripped of almost all equipment and gear whether is was nailed down or not, even the refrigerator had been removed and a Junker put in its place, the synchronizer was gone, the alarm system was gone, the davit was gone and the list goes on and on. I did have an opportunity to purchase some of the equipment back from the previous Owner but declined, although I did convince him to return some drawers and a few of the teak trim rings for the speakers, and also some keys.
In April a friend and I went down and removed the fly bridge and moved it down on the front deck which was a real experience in itself. The boat was in a storage yard that used laborers that basically lived in old boats or cars or dilapidated trailer houses spread around the property and at first I was a little concerned and even intimidated but everyone of them was great to work with and went out of their way to answer questions and even help at times. It took almost 2 days to get all the trash off the top of the boat and some out of the interior that was left behind. It took another long day to disconnect the fly bridge and move it down to the bow. Originally I was going to hire the yard to use a crane to move the fly bridge but after it was disconnected it proved more practical to build a ramp out of 2x6s and just slide it down to the front deck. Of course this did not make the yard owner too happy as he was hoping to make money on the crane work. In the end we ended up paying him a very reasonable fee for the time spent on the property and some 2x6's and a new wheel to replace the one the was taken from the fly bridge. Why someone wanted the blackened wheel is beyond me and it must have been a sooty mess to take off.
It then became a waiting game for the mover who was also the owner of the storage yard to transport the boat. Every time I talked to him it would be next week with some sort of excuse.. I was getting more than a little worried as I was paying him $800 a month for storage while it sat there which gave me concern that there was not a lot of incentive to get it moved. In desperation I finally offered him a $1000 bonus if he could get it here by a specific date. Apparently money talks as it arrived 4 hours before the specified time. The driver that did the actual transport was a wonderful fellow to work with and incredibly knowledgeable and bent over backward to help.
If mover had had an opportunity to check out the rout into my home I would like to have had it delivered to my lot but it was a big unknown so we had it delivered to an industrial storage yard about 10minutes from the house. I though this would be close enough but I really do wish it was at the house, work would go so much faster. I am checking on making that move as it might be economical to save yard storage fees for the 2 years I have estimated for doing the repairs and upgrades.
I had hopped to start on the fire damage immediately after it arrived but my wife insisted I finish the motorhome restoration I was in the middle of and then I had an Uncle that got very sick and ended up spending some significant time make trips to Medford, and I could not give up sailing my Thistle in the national championships so in the end not much got done during 2007.