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Looking at a First 375

Oct 7, 2019
13
Beneteau First 375 Whitehall
am new to this forum, my wife and I have been sailing together for a year or so on a starter boat I purchased off a friend of mine to test out my liking for sailing. Needless to say, she has me hooked and we have been searching for a bigger boat that my family can enjoy.
we have been on a smaller chyrsler C26 fixed keel for the last year, but after looking at a number of different boats and not liking what we have found ( mostly water intrusion, rotted sections of core and soft spots through out decks ) we are now looking at a Beneteau First 375 that a friend of mine has introduced me to the current owner about.

the 375 has been out of the water for the last two years apporix ( tags are for 2018 ) and I was wondering besides the common headliner issue ( which it does has ) are there any other major concerns I should be looking to identify on prior to having a surveyor come out and check out the boat.

the pricing is extremely fair for the condition that I have seen, so thought best to reach out and try to get some information from others that have owned Beneteau's

Thanks in advance
 
Mar 20, 2016
393
Beneteau 351 WYC Whitby
My buddy owns one ,a good solid boat built better than any newer beneteau ,no matrix liner
 
Oct 7, 2019
13
Beneteau First 375 Whitehall
Thanks for the input. I have looked at the exterior only, and it is rough, so going into this knowing that it will need some work to bring it back. I have a meeting set up this Sunday to do a full walk though, and start diving into cubbies and storage areas to check out the full interior.
Will grab some pictures and update more once I know this will be something I am moving into.
 
Jan 4, 2010
886
Farr 30 San Francisco
Keel bolts, get a survey and an engine survey. It is a big boat compared to a C26 everything is more expensive. I used to have one, wonderful boat on the + side. Sails really well.
 
Oct 7, 2019
13
Beneteau First 375 Whitehall
Yes, survey will be done as long as we come to agreement on purchase no matter what. The value on the survey is priceless in my eyes, finding things that need to come to light, even if the owner did not know them already. Had a C36 Catalina I was looking at a few months ago where the mast step found to be completely rotted out from water traveling down the mast and the bilge drain hose not deep enough to dry out the bilge, allowing for the mast step to sit in water which rotted it. ( why would you have a mast step placed in a spot where it can be submerged in water anyways ? )

The owner sent me a list of what he knows needs to be done currently ( most of it cosmetic ) since he cancelled out meeting this last Sunday afternoon for me to look at the interior. He is estimating the repairs needed around 10k, which do not include what I have concerns with on the hull.
I will attach the list, semi altered for name and price

Editing the post with a few pictures I took of the hull and keel when I was up there a few weeks ago
 

Attachments

Last edited:
Oct 22, 2014
13,130
CAL 35 Cruiser moored EVERETT WA
That is a fairly long and involved project list of systems that are old or not working. This looks to me to be a project boat.
If the owner has seriously discounted to price then it may be of interest.
It looks like the bow and the keel have struck things.

Reading the list it sounded to me that the boat was ridden, ridden hard in some cases and perhaps put away wet, as they say about horses.

Good luck in your negotiations. A survey will help in finding a fair price. Spend time exploring all the nooks and crannies of the boat . Your exploration may yield information that pushes the dealing one way or another.
 
Oct 7, 2019
13
Beneteau First 375 Whitehall
Well the price is for sure in line, with what needs to be done. ( extremely under priced vs what I have found nationwide for any 375 First ) A few of my friends where I live, know the owner, and have giving me information on how he kept it. I am not trying to point at neglect, but seems to be overall comments I received for them.
I overall was not wanting to get into a project boat, but with the price on it, I am leaning towards worth it.
 
Mar 20, 2016
393
Beneteau 351 WYC Whitby
Because the keel had hit something you want to do a careful inspection of the stringers .When the keel hits the front pulls down and the back pushes up ,this can cause stringers to become detached or crack away from the hull.On newer Beneteaus they are glued and the glue pops and the keel will push up causing floor to rise in boat and your keel is now not supported
 
Jan 4, 2010
886
Farr 30 San Francisco
The keel is iron so they rust, the bow looks bad but I bet that can be fixed. Freshwater boat is a plus I think. The project list doesn't look too daunting, all boats come with project lists. If the price is good. On the plus side you get to replace the worn out stuff with exactly the stuff you want.
 
Oct 7, 2019
13
Beneteau First 375 Whitehall
@JohnShannon I guess maybe I should ask you guys this,
what considering you see the project list and pictures of a few things on the hull do you guys see as good price ?
 

JRT

.
Feb 14, 2017
1,832
Catalina 310 211 Lake Guntersville, AL
Get some online sail estimates, that stuff sounds old and a First should have good sails. No mention of the motor? With all those issues I'd assume motor issues too.

Sails for my boat are $5-6k and a full bottom job on my 310 is estimated to be $4-6k, some numbers to work with.
 
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Oct 7, 2019
13
Beneteau First 375 Whitehall
Have a call in to a locate sail maker in Whitehall area.
Motor is a 48hp Volvo. Maintained and serviced by the marina ( information from owner )
 
Jan 4, 2010
886
Farr 30 San Francisco
That is weird stock motor was a 28hp Volvo MD2003 as I recall.. I would suggest doing the minimum initially and get to know the boat then upgrade as required but when you have a better feel for the boat and your requirements/expectations.
 
Oct 7, 2019
13
Beneteau First 375 Whitehall
@JohnShannon he is the second owner and knew the original. when the original owners purchased it from Miami Boat Show they ordered the largest possible engine to go into it. Which is why it is the Volvo 48 hp
 
Oct 22, 2014
13,130
CAL 35 Cruiser moored EVERETT WA
Motor size would be valuable if going against strong currents or in building seas. Might want to get a mechanics opinion other than the shop that has been working on it.

If you have the time and the interest a project boat is not a bad thing. Note that some of the conventional thinking it is better to pay more and get a boat that is ready to sail.

You will spend hours of love on a boat. And you will share your money with it. In the end you need to look at the process as something you enjoy and want to spend on. A Hobby. In the end it is very unlikely you will be “paid Back” for the love and sweat you invested. That is why the going in price needs to be one that you can accept freely as fair.

You will find that the boat will pay you back in experiences and memories. These will be on your boat. A boat that has your emotions and blood invested. That alone can be rewarding if you have a mind for that.

If you are all dollars an pennies then you will likely find disappointment in owning a project boat. No one really knows jumping into a boat which way it will go. There are those who do get a “monetary return” from their boat ownership. In my experience they are often not the norm.
 
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Oct 7, 2019
13
Beneteau First 375 Whitehall
I get completely where you are coming from @jssailem . I have been a mechanic for thirty years now, and helped a number of older friends with very large restoration projects on cars and trucks, so I get the fact that you never get back what you put into anything like that, but it is equally the journey getting a project like that done.
If everything works out in the end, this would be something that my wife and I would keep and enjoy well into when my own kids have my grandchildren coming out to it. Is one of the main reasons I would consider this type of boat a project, because it would end up being something in the end. Unlike most of the other boats I have looked at this season.
 
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Oct 22, 2014
13,130
CAL 35 Cruiser moored EVERETT WA
I have a project boat. It is one I could use a little while still working on it to make it what I see in my minds eye. At first I did not trust her to take her out on the water away from the marina very far. But gradually I made improvements working down my list. The list is a little shorter then when I started in 2015. There have been setbacks. But on the positive there have been a number of rewarding improvements. I can now trust her to take me to waters far and with confidence return to port. Moving forward I have projects that will dress up her appearance. These are in someways a bit more challenging for me. Getting dirt under my fingers or addressing a sailing issue is easy when compared to thinking about paint colors or adding wood trim to plastic. I have been blessed with having friends that have great skills that have helped me in my journey.

Share you journey and pictures as you adventure forward in your quest.
Fair winds.