Sunday, September 16, 2018

New Boat Purchase - Update

Although I have not been writing very much on the blog - we  have been busy!  In summary, Janet made a trip back to England to see her parents and to attend the wedding of our friends Leon and Kat.  However, since the wedding coincided with the peak of Hurricane Season, I elected to stay home. 

Arnica Bay - TS Gordon

Tropical Storm Gordon

We almost escaped without a storm while Janet was away, but then just a day before her return we were hit by tropical storm Gordon.  Thankfully not a severe storm for us, but we did do some boat and house preparations.

The only damage was a couple of lifted shingles and my wind vane on the roof toppled.  All-in-all not too bad. Fingers crossed for the remainder of this season!

Lagoon Factory Visit

While in England, Janet and her father, Don were able to make a side trip to France to check on the progress of the new boat - a Loggon 40 that will be named "Midnight Sun III".  It was not an ideal time to make a factory visit as Beneteau/Lagoon, like most French industry takes the month of August off and the factory was closed.  She made the visit on their fist day back in production in September, and based on their reports, they were very impressed by the entire production process!

Unfortunately, I can't share a bunch of impressive photographs as the facility has a very strict "no photos" policy.  Our boat is Hull no 45, and unfortunately it was at the stage of "fine finishing" of the fiberglass and was in a dust-controlled area where they could not visit.  However, they did see Hull no 44 and 46 - so we have confidence that Hill 45 does indeed exist.  My understanding is that both Hulls 44 and 46 were just "shells" with a long way to go, but apparently the boats move along the production line every 5 hours or so and when in full production, a finished boat rolls out of the facility every day and a half.  I find that really hard to picture - but let's hope that they are right!

So, according to their production manager "Vincent", our boat should be out of the factory November 8, and be rigged and ready by November 20.  We would like to thank the following for helping set up the factory tour/visit:
  • Brad Kaufmann - our Dream Yacht Broker
  • Frederick Moreau - Commercial Director, Dream Yacht Charters, France
  • Vincent (sorry I don't have a last name) - Beneteau/Lagoon
Again, its hard to express how important this was to us, and with no photos, I am of course very anxious to see things progress to a finished boat.  Here's Janet and her Dad with a Lagoon 40 that just rolled off the production line - exciting!  Anyway, Janet was impressed and came away with a good feeling that things will be completed as promised.

Purchase Update

We have arranged to purchase the boat using Euros as the currency- so we have been watching the exchange rate closely. We saw a dip in July/August, so made a substantial payment on the boat to take advantage of the exchange rate. 

I have been spending a fair amount of time researching and planning the delivery route and also purchasing and/or staging essential items that we will need for the delivery trip.  As a recap - we are planning to self-deliver the boat from France to the BVI where she will go into charter for a season or two.  

I intend to write a blog with more detail on our preparations and route planning.  In terms of initial preparations, we plan to ship a pallet of items to France ahead of our arrival, with items such as life-raft, water maker, tools, voltage converter, propane adaptors.......the list is long, and the staging area in the garage is building!  The hope is that it will all fit on one pallet, and logistically, we need to ship this in the next week or so to be sure it will arrive ahead of us.

In terms of an update on our plans, we have decided to move into current times, and trt to prepare a "Vlog" or "Video blog" of our experience in addition to this Blog.  So we have just posted "Episode 1" in YouTube and plan on some updates as we move into our adventure.  So here's a link (hopefully) to Episode 1, titled: "Midnight Sun III - Interview: Lagoon Purchase Episode !"  If the link below does not work, you should be able to find it on YouTube.