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Buying a used Melges 24

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We are putting a Melges 24 campaign together for the 2013 season in Europe. We are looking at a number of boats generally between hull number 550 and 750 built by Devoti.

 

What should we be looking for when we go to view? are there any known problems we should be aware of? How much lead do the boats typically have in? Do some boats have a better reputation than other (builder / age)?

 

Basically I am trying to get the inside loop, that you usuallly don't pick up until you have been in a class for a couple of seasons.

 

Thanks

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We raced a couple of BAE oldies < 200 versus devotis c. 500's this weekend.

 

Not actually much to say at our level, certainly you will get a nicer looking boat as the early boats were in early days of assy' sailing and had plenty of crashes.

 

Things to look for in the european boats: fixed versus running forestay- matter of preference, i like the one run down to the cabin myself.

 

Mast condition and the age is vital: no chips and a smooth track, with manufacturers receipt.

 

Foils: damage to the edges from trailering and damage to the box ( you should use as you maybe know some thin plastic wedges) and damage to the rudder pintel/gudeon fixing points ( newer castings from devoti seem to have a slightly different tolerance of 0.1mm causing a pain in the neck: better to polish down the bolts and shim with silicone or something- they are tight as a gnats chuff)

 

The bulb can have a lot of filler on it, sound around to check it has no massive plastic filler where it has lost or had weight removed!

 

stanchions are of course critical to the hiking strop weight: inspect under deck essential and the pulpit at the back if you get wind where you sail.

 

Back stay condition: this should be changed out if at all worn because it is a heck of a lot cheaper than a new stick.

 

Sails: dac' mains are trendy but bendy! Ullman sorry edit, Quantum, spinnakers from a certain time ago seem to be developed for deeper angles in stronger wind because they set like a BOS on a reach. North sets are generally a good bet, Ullman mains can be excellent.

 

Why do spinnakers vary so much in a bloody OD I wonder ????

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Also: get the North and Ullman tuning guides and make up a bit of light line to the correct mast top to transom legnth so you can pop it in your hand luggage and measure on site, if the boat is on water, in racing trim of course, which you should see. This should confirm the geomtery is okay for the forestay, but fixed legnth forestays with a jib halyard should also be measured to check for exessive sag.

 

You should ask them for a lift if they have a small crane and the boat is a goer- but see on the water to check for leaks, trim and rig tune / dimensions whilst floating which is different from when they are on the hard being dry sailed BTW.

 

Once you are finished kicking the tyres and have a boat you wanna buy.On the water, Crank up the outers on the loos gauge to maximum and wang on the back stay check the mast is then in column and take up the inners too.

 

And the foils can have bad filler jobs hiding delamination and water ingress: there is a core which will absorb massess I am told under the carbon. Remember expoxy is used on carbon and polyester top jobs will fall off eventually as they have no chemical bonding to the expoxy.

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What about the weight of the boat? How much variance is reasonalbe? How much heavier should you tolerate/allow before you walk away?

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Thanks for the replies.

 

Whats the difference between the fixed and running forestays (apart from the obvious that one is fixed and one is adjustable!), ie what are the benefits of each and how so they work?

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The ideal rake is critical so a fixed forestay to a measurement which allows for max rake with a tight backstay is kind of indexed in.

 

IIRC in the Norths and ullman guides there is only 4.5cm difference max rake / min.

So I guuess you can get at least half of this from slack backstay to tight before the mast top bends

 

The adjustable one allows for light weather setting with sag and less rake. It is also easier to rig or can be used with a line to help raise and lower the mast, but the assy halyard is just as good in fact.

 

Hope you can do a double sheet bend BB!

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