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Future Downeaster owner?!? :D
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donuts
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December 31, 2020 - 6:22 pm
Member Since: December 29, 2020
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I just got back from checking out a 1977 Downeaster 32 for sale (she would be my first boat), and I've fallen in love. She was in the water today, where I met two thirds of a three generation trio (Grandpa, Father, Son) that have been looking after her for the past few years. Sometime after the new year, we'll bring her to a shipyard to haul out and get inspected to seal the deal (I'll try to get a sea trial during that transit).

One big bummer tho, is that her bowsprit was damaged in a storm last week. The dockmaster said that they saw 75kt gusts rip through. The wind and wave action managed to fray the stern and spring lines, which brought the boat far enough forward that the bowsprit dancing on the waves pummeled a dockside electrical box. 

The owner is talking with the insurance company to see when they can send out an inspector and what they recommend doing. I'll post a few pictures later today or tomorrow. But I thought I'd ask a couple questions, since bowsprit replacements seem to be a common theme with Downeasters.

Assuming I have any say in the matter, what are the tradeoffs between wood or stainless steel (or some other material) construction for a replacement? 

How could I tell if there was any damage done to the deck/hull due to the loading on the sprit? Or is that a better question for my pre-sale inspector....

I'm pretty giddy after spending a couple hours chatting with the two about the boat, sailing, and their own plans to upsize. I left feeling confident that she was well taken care of, and a good idea of what my immediate and future projects might be (replacing the holding tank, some wiring and bulb work in the mast, sealing up some windows, ...).

Perhaps you have some words of wisdom for someone checking out a Downeaster 32? General words of caution or encouragement?

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donuts
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December 31, 2020 - 6:42 pm
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Here is one pic showing the bowsprit damage.... didn't get a good shot of the crack that extends down the side of the bowsprit from the tip for about 8". As a bonus, here's a pic showing how the bowline tore the plates (whatever they're called) off the hull.

 

IMG_5035.jpgImage Enlarger

IMG_5034.jpgImage Enlarger

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donuts
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December 31, 2020 - 7:27 pm
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I'm curious, are there any naval engineers in the forums? I wonder what the loads look like on a bowsprit... what are the design parameters?

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bobmcd625
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January 2, 2021 - 6:53 pm
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Welcome to the Forum and best wishes for a happy time with the DE32.

The main function of the bow sprit is to anchor the forestay so the forces that were received at the pointy end would be felt at all points where the stays are connected to the hull.  You should look at the hull connections for the whisker stays and the bob stay and even the back stay connection which could have been compromised.

Of course this is a job for an expert and you must get the present owner to carry out the full monty of insurance claim and repairs.  

It looks like the wooden parts in the photo can be easily replaced, but I can't see how far back on the platform the damage goes.  In any case it should be possible to remain the wooden parts than to replace with stainless.

Not a happy start but hopefully it can be restored completely.

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