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Thread: Steel Hull Maintenance.

  1. #11
    Senior Member BananaTom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by easttnboater View Post

    1. I would not haul it out.
    2. I would wire brush the visible corrosion and paint it.
    3. I would spruce up the interior, but would spend the absolute minimal money. Remodeling it would be out.
    4. Live on it until it starts to leak.
    5. Start saving money for the disposal cost.

    Agreed!!

    And make sure his rent on the house does not fall into arrears.
    Then he will be out more money.

    If you think about it, he is living the dream of a live-a-board, and the cost is only $6000, plus dock fees and vessel disposal in the end. Start developing a disposal plan, as that metal does have a salvage value.

    The rent he is getting for his home will at least a positive income. Verses many of us that own a home and a boat, and just dump thousands into the water, without getting rent on out homes.

  2. #12
    Super Moderator OLD HOUSEBOATER's Avatar
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    Sorry etb. This puppy hasn't been out of the water in 8 years. Yes a Coal Tar job can last 8 years. However this assumes haulouts every 2 or 3 years to inspect and touchup scrapes and blemishes. Yes steel boats rot out from the inside. I owned A steel CarriCraft and 3 RiverQueens. I cut openings in the floor to be able to get at every single inch of the bottom. It took effort to maintain a dry rust free bilge. This was 35 years ago. I doubt this boat has had this much attention. Stray current corrosion could have happened and without an inspection you would not know until your in a state of failure. Even Coal Tar can't fight that. I have to assume this is a River Queen because everything else out there has pretty much turned to scrap. The bottom line is this boat has to come out and needs a survey by someone with experience in steel hulls. Hull thickness needs to be checked 100%. On a boat that old a leak may not start with a pin hole, a whole section could give way and sink in minutes.

    If you think I'm trying to scare you, your 100% right. How did he get insurance? What marina is he at? I would NEVER go to sleep on it until I knew it was safe.
    The fries are cold so we gave you extra.

  3. #13
    Senior Member Tony B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OLD HOUSEBOATER View Post
    ...............If you think I'm trying to scare you, your 100% right. How did he get insurance? What marina is he at? I would NEVER go to sleep on it until I knew it was safe.
    I tried to scare him also, but the seller keeps assuring him that we are over reacting. The seller is one of those guys that thinks that because he talks the loudest, he is right. Right now, I am not getting involved with his decision making process any more. I already voiced my opinion. What is most helpful to me about this post is that I personally am getting a great education right here and now. My last suggestion to him was to at least remove the plywood flooring and look for himself. The yard foreman we went to talk to the other day tried to scare him also. he told him that without a haul-out he has no idea of what the bottom is like. The yard foreman also told him that sometimes people coat the bottom with roofing tar to hold back the smaller leaks and how important it is to haul out and find out. Not sure when boat was hauled out last.

    We are at Tellico Marina on Tellico Lake. Tellico Lake is part of the Little Tennessee River which flows northward to join the Tennessee River about 30 miles or so west of Knoxville.

    Not sure what kind of insurance he has but I'm quite sure it is not enough. He is paying about $150/year. I don't know who the insurer is but I don't think you can get the $800,000 or so EPA liability in case boat sinks and pollutes for only $150 a year. I can be wrong.

    Keep the post coming, I am really enjoying the education.

    Thanks again
    Houseboater at Heart
    1986 Mainship 36 Dual Cabin Pointed Ended House Boat

  4. #14
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    All the steel boats had left our marina a few years back. Then the "Memphis Queen" or something like that was "pulled" into the gas dock. The gas dock owner (who should have known better) thought of buying the Memphis Queen. Had it looked at by a local boat repair facility who said no way was he going to be involved with this steel hull. It sank that night and is still there. State and Federal agency's are involved now and she has been there for several years. Now having said that this is a restaurant barge not a houseboat.
    I talked to the gentleman who "inspected" the boat and he said he could feel the hull move under his feet.
    The main point to my story is that failure can come suddenly and catastrophically. I went to bed on my houseboat that night and the Queen was sitting pretty. The next morning I was sitting on the back of my boat drinking coffee when I noticed a plastic chair floating by, then another. As I started getting the gaff hook I looked and saw the Memphis Queen had sunk overnight!
    Oh Talked to a person looking at removal and his quote was Tens of thousands and salvage. Now I know nothing about steel hulls but what I have read and the only good I have read was on this site by a poster to this thread and he was diligent in his maintenance while the seller of the houseboat this thread is about was not per the OP.

  5. #15
    Senior Member Tony B's Avatar
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    Des........

    You are correct, I am the OP. The seller and the buyer are both dockmates. They are next to each other - for now, anyway.

    I just hope that when I wake up in the morning, I don't see a forensic team going down the dock.
    Houseboater at Heart
    1986 Mainship 36 Dual Cabin Pointed Ended House Boat

  6. #16
    Super Moderator OLD HOUSEBOATER's Avatar
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    A couple pf print outs of the article and the current posts given to the gentleman is the best you can do. Then everyone can have a clear conscience. If/when things go south.

    OHB
    The fries are cold so we gave you extra.

  7. #17
    Senior Member Tony B's Avatar
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    THANKS OHB

    I didn't mean for this thread to become your full-time job, but I certainly appreciate yours and even every one else's suggestions.
    And thanks again, I 7will print out what you suggested.
    Houseboater at Heart
    1986 Mainship 36 Dual Cabin Pointed Ended House Boat

  8. #18
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    Tony just a thought. You might want to tell him to call Jack Henderson at Henderson boat repair. He is in Nancy Kentucky by Lake Cumberland. Jack probably knows more about steel houseboats than anyone around these parts. He has been repairing and rebuilding them for 30+ years . He would be upfront and straight with him I think. He was featured in HB magazine a few years back I think. May be another source for him. I think I have his number somewhere.

  9. #19
    Senior Member Tony B's Avatar
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    Thanks jake

    I'll rel;ay the info to my neighbor but i seriously doubt he would pay for someone to come down here from that far away and bringing the boat up there is way way out of the question.
    Thanks for the kind thoughts though.
    Houseboater at Heart
    1986 Mainship 36 Dual Cabin Pointed Ended House Boat

  10. #20
    Super Moderator OLD HOUSEBOATER's Avatar
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    What make boat is it. River Queen, Lazy Days, Sea Going,???
    The fries are cold so we gave you extra.

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