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Water stain in cabin next to bulkhead

Jul 25, 2021
7
Catalina 30 Everett
Hey all, new member and glad to meet y’all!

I’m looking at a Catalina 30 for sale (about $10k, needs all new lines and I’m sure new standing rigging, has patches that haven’t been painted over on the hill above water-line, generally a clean but neglected old gal) and trying to decide whether to pull the trigger or not. I noticed some issues, but my main questions for other owners:

a) Should I be concerned about a rust-colored stain on the cabin sole at the bulkhead where the head is located? It occurred to me that the roof could be leaking where the mast passes through, and that a stain like that would be a good indication. I didn’t feel around to see if the roof was soft.
b) do all Catalinas smell like diesel fuel after a while since the engine is located so far inside the cabin?

I’m worried that there’s a fuel and/or exhaust leak since it really smelled of diesel fuel, as in opened the companionway hatch and couldn’t walk inside for a minute. And I’m not some delicate flower, made my eyes burn. Also worried that there’s a leak at the mast that could total the boatonce I bought it. Of course I’d get a survey done but why spend the $ if I can crowd-source the answer?!?

thanks in advance!
~Young
 
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Likes: glory30
Sep 25, 2008
6,273
Alden 50 Sarasota, Florida
I’d be more concerned with the hull “patches” which indicate past damage. If you don’t/can’t get a straight answer why there are repairs visible there, walk away. Similarly, if you can’t get a direct answer how and with what the repairs were done which might be visible from the inside, walk away.

It’s easy to tell if the mast step is leaking and rotted -is the deck concave at the step? Is the mast post base at the hull rotted?

As for the diesel smell, that isn’t uncommon and the cause is either leaking hose(s) or a leak from the tank, both of which are easily identified.
 
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Likes: young_gray

Ward H

.
Nov 7, 2011
3,096
Catalina 30 Mk II Barnegat, NJ
a) Should I be concerned about a rust-colored stain on the cabin sole at the bulkhead where the head is located? It occurred to me that the roof could be leaking where the mast passes through, and that a stain like that would be a good indication. I didn’t feel around to see if the roof was soft.
That could be a few things. A few photos would really help to give you possible sources for the stain.
As Don said, a concave deck at the mast step is a good indicator the deck is rotting. If the head door sticks shut, that is an indicator the compression post is sinking. Neither would total the boat but could be a time consuming fix.

b) do all Catalinas smell like diesel fuel after a while since the engine is located so far inside the cabin?
No. My C30 has no diesel fuel or diesel exhaust smell. Any boat with a diesel that smells of diesel fuel has or had a fuel leak that was not properly cleaned up.

I'd be more concerned about the hull damage and condition of the engine. There are also issues on earlier models that were corrected in later models so model year is important to determine a reasonable price.
 
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Likes: young_gray
Jul 25, 2021
7
Catalina 30 Everett
I'd be more concerned about the hull damage and condition of the engine. There are also issues on earlier models that were corrected in later models so model year is important to determine a reasonable price.
[/QUOTE]
Thanks for the reply! It’s a 1978, the bilge appears to be super clean and the keel bolts are completely encased in sealant so it looks as if they’ve either done a repair there already, or have tried to prevent an issue. There’s not much I can tell from that section so I’ll have to find another way to see if it’s got the separation issue. The engine is a very fresh rebuild Universal 3-cyl, so at least 18hp but I can’t tell which engine it is exactly and the broker didn’t seem to know much beyond that it only has around 400 hours on the rebuild.
 
Feb 21, 2013
3,638
Hunter 46 Point Richmond, CA
.........I’m looking at a Catalina 30 for sale (about $10k, needs all new lines and I’m sure new standing rigging, has patches that haven’t been painted over on the hill above water-line, generally a clean but neglected old gal) and trying to decide whether to pull the trigger or not...........Of course I’d get a survey done but why spend the $ if I can crowd-source the answer?!?.........
Welcome to the forum!!

You will get lots of good information/advise from this forum but I would NOT skip a marine and rigging survey. You will need it anyway to obtain insurance. From the work you need to get done you will likely spend more for it that you will pay for the boat BUT it will be restored to your liking and and be a safer boat to sail. The boat should not smell of diesel fuel so suggest finding the cause and mitigate it. Suggest getting quotes to make all the repairs/upgrades and then decide it that is within your budget before you decide to purchase it. Good luck!!
 
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Likes: young_gray
Jul 25, 2021
7
Catalina 30 Everett
Fun fact: when the windows are leaking, water drips down the closet fascia and brings teak oil with it. This leads to a brown stain next to the mast, just forward of the bilge cover. A little Barkeeps friend polished it right off.
 
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Likes: jssailem
Sep 28, 2021
4
catalina 30 Great Kills
Hows it going did you buy the boat. I would also look to seal the chainplates also.
I just got my cat 30 aug 14 hull 46 1974 I m told maybe 75 idk. It has loads of things I can do put is working well.
keep in touch