Unofficial Mini Forum

Mini Forums => North American => Topic started by: Jim 505 on February 07, 2018, 20:34:46 PM

Title: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: Jim 505 on February 07, 2018, 20:34:46 PM
Does anyone have any opinions on the Chris Pitts mini 565?

http://www.yachtworld.com/boats/2005/Mini-Transat-Chris-Pitts-Custom-2713580/North-Kingstown/RI/United-States (http://www.yachtworld.com/boats/2005/Mini-Transat-Chris-Pitts-Custom-2713580/North-Kingstown/RI/United-States)


I understand the carbon mast is broken, and the keel is cracked and likely needs replacing. I’m not afraid to tackle either of these problems.


Before the boat was damaged was it any good? Is it worth the effort?


How would I best transport the boat across to the west coast? Does anyone have recommendations on a good boat transport company?
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: Herver on February 07, 2018, 21:14:09 PM
Hello Jim,
Have you checked this : http://www.histoiredeshalfs.com/Histoire%20des%20Minis/565.htm
Not so much races ... Does not help so much
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: Jim 505 on February 07, 2018, 21:19:36 PM
Thanks for the info.
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: Thomas on February 08, 2018, 12:53:18 PM
Looks heavy to me, could probably be lightened slightly. Still an old design. No idea on how good it can actually be.

You will need a road trailer or a boat transport company. It heavily depends on who is available in your area or around Kingston, RI.
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: revision on August 22, 2018, 18:57:45 PM
I am driving down to check this boat out this weekend and will take more pics.  If anybody has questions or specific requests, let me know. 


As to transport, Uship.com is basically the ebay of shipping, and I've had good luck with them in the past.
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: revision on August 26, 2018, 01:44:44 AM
She's rough.  I'll upload some pics when I get home, but basically the yard owns her now...an English gentleman had been daysailing her before he had her pulled...he was planning a move back to England and asked them to help him sell the boat.  During a move, the boat shifted in the slings.  Her keel (metal framework? with wood and carbon) needs to be completely rebuilt.  A stanchion is all bent resulting in damage to the deck, and her mast is snapped.  What's especially confusing to me was that the "carbon" mast was actually a solid wooden spar with an outer carbon shell.  She's tubby compared to other minis I've seen, but oh my!  I don't think you'd find more room down below...she's cavernous.  Cockpit, not so much.  I'll get some pics up early this week for anybody interested. She's been for sale at least two years...they're asking 4900 and it includes unbolting keel and loading it on to your trailer as well as a (larger) aluminum mast...the broker threatened to put the boat in the dumpster and sell sails and instruments for more than asking price, but the elecs are outdated and the sails are boutique...my thoughts are if they were going to do that, it would have been around the time they bought the boat by breaking it.
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: revision on August 27, 2018, 23:40:16 PM

I have more pictures of the inside and whatnot if anybody is interested further.  The keel appears to be carbon over wood and would need to be completely replaced.  The aluminum mast is what the yard is selling with the boat to replace the wood one, although it it a bit bigger than the carbon/wood one that it is meant to replace.  The mast isn't really wet, but broke instead because of the massive amount of hardward that was placed at the spreaders. It seems as if it was only a matter of time.  I am not sure if this is the original mast or not.



(https://thumb.ibb.co/k6Uyk9/IMG_9673.jpg) (https://ibb.co/k6Uyk9) (https://thumb.ibb.co/k2rB59/IMG_9675.jpg) (https://ibb.co/k2rB59) (https://thumb.ibb.co/gGrTk9/IMG_9677.jpg) (https://ibb.co/gGrTk9) (https://thumb.ibb.co/mR2ZQ9/IMG_9700.jpg) (https://ibb.co/mR2ZQ9) (https://thumb.ibb.co/k3hZQ9/IMG_9721.jpg) (https://ibb.co/k3hZQ9) (https://thumb.ibb.co/n00cdU/IMG_9723.jpg) (https://ibb.co/n00cdU)
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: Jim 505 on August 28, 2018, 01:22:01 AM
Thanks for having a look and posting a report.


I don’t think she sounds like a suitable project for me.
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: revision on August 28, 2018, 03:38:21 AM
No problem at all, glad you got the PM.  There are a couple on the west coast for sale via sailboatlistings if you're budget allows.  Best of luck in the search.
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: danielhorton83 on September 17, 2018, 00:37:17 AM
about to buy this, wish me luck! Does anyone know what the keel design is like, guessing it's stainless rods to the bulbs surrounded by wood with a carbon coating?
cheers
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: revision on September 17, 2018, 05:00:01 AM
Good luck! If you'd seriously like to buy this, I am happy to elaborate as to the construction and repairs necessary. It is not stainless.
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: danielhorton83 on September 17, 2018, 05:17:35 AM
Pretty serious, I am about to put a deposit on it haha. I know its carbon coated, wondering how it is still together though.  Id be worried if it was just foam or something, kind of guessed t had some bolts or rods running the whole way through it as well....

Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: revision on September 17, 2018, 05:37:58 AM
PM me contact information and I'll send you everything I have.
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: danielhorton83 on September 17, 2018, 05:41:56 AM
Ah sorry, by all means go for it, just seemed to have been there for a while, seems a waste and was looking for a project, am stuck in thrunderbolt marine in Savannah for 4 months so was going to bring her here... any info you have would be great though. 
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: revision on September 17, 2018, 05:44:23 AM
Thunderbolt?!?! Gotta love those 6 Krispy Kremes and the paper every morning! 
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: revision on September 17, 2018, 19:10:45 PM
The first couple show damage to the belly of the boat, not sure what dug into her but, judging by the rot of the wood, the damaged area has been submerged.

(https://thumb.ibb.co/k1UW4z/IMG_9684.jpg) (https://ibb.co/k1UW4z) (https://thumb.ibb.co/nr4aWe/IMG_9687.jpg) (https://ibb.co/nr4aWe)




Tiller shot, standing water from improper blocking.


 (https://thumb.ibb.co/kdeyjz/IMG_9695.jpg) (https://ibb.co/kdeyjz) (https://thumb.ibb.co/ny9W4z/IMG_9697.jpg) (https://ibb.co/ny9W4z)


These are the longitudinals on either side of the cabin.  I'm guessing that there was water in the boat at some point, but it had been pumped by the time I go there.   The sails in the bags were built by Chris, not Doyle. The bags were merely ones he had around the shop.


 (https://thumb.ibb.co/m14aWe/IMG_9705.jpg) (https://ibb.co/m14aWe) (https://thumb.ibb.co/b704Pz/IMG_9706.jpg) (https://ibb.co/b704Pz)


This is what I PMd him:



She's carbon over plywood.  The keel needs to be completely rebuilt...it's not stainless...there is a 1.5" steel rod that connects the bottom bulb to another metal half bulb that is bolted to the underside of the hull.  The wood and carbon is all shot, as indicated in the pics, and the metal is bent.  It is high carbon steel (very hard but not very flexible,) so there is a good chance that it is cracked and, if so, it has to be replaced and cannot be repaired.  There is no way to tell whether or not that strut is salvageable without cutting in to the keel.  Furthermore there is damage from the drop to the internal grid work that supports the keel.


There is damage to the hull on the underside as pictured...needs to be reaved out and recored. Topsides are wet in the cockpit because the yard has it nose down and she isn't draining...recore.  Deck is punctured by stanchion from the fall...recore. Interior longitudinals in cabin are rotten, I suspect that she had standing water inside at some point.


Mast is trash and the aluminum replacement they are offering with the boat won't actually fit, nor would you want to go to an upsized, heavier extrusion.  What running rigging left is trash.


There is no trailer, and the yard has it blocked like a regular boat instead of properly supporting it in a cradle.


There is a decent sail inventory numbers wise, but it's all the original '05 sails and they were all built by the original builder.


What electronics that are there are all last gen raymarine and may or may not work.  Tillerpilot is only an ST series.  Tiller is delaminated and needs rebuilt.


What hardware/winches/clutches/blocks that are left are all heavier cruising grade for strength as opposed to the lighter harken or lewmar race units.   


Also of note (and as you mentioned that she is "weird") is that the boat itself was built for a different purpose than the transat...she was built to sail in the far northern waters of the atlantic.  She has a lot of freeboard and, while I'm told faster upwind than other minis, cannot hang with them off the wind, so at the end of the work and expense you're left with a niche boat with no potential market to sell to, especially now that anything not scow bowed is obsolete in the mini world....Not sure if you follow the mini circuit or what your potential plans would be, but she wouldn't be competitive against other minis in any downwind race.


I've talked a bit with Chris and estimates are roughly 17k to get it ready for paint and finishing, that includes a new wooden mast.  So figure another 3 to 5 in paint, 2 or so in a trailer, and another 2k in running rigging to have a race ready boat with 15 year old sails and a cedar mast.  If you wanted a carbon rig, probably another 5-10k on top of that.  Comparatively, race ready Pogo 2's (the winning-est mini design to date) are $30k all day long with a trailer once you expand your search beyond the US...roughly 5k to get them stateside via ship and that's loaded to bear with gear and a trailer.  There are 20k protos available in Canada. Hell even the brand new Pogo 3s are starting to come up at around 80k as the race gets closer...it seems like everyone is liquidating to go to the newer scows which are significantly faster off the breeze.  Also of note is that she is 550 pounds heavier than a Pogo 2.




Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: revision on September 17, 2018, 21:14:47 PM

Interior shots

(https://thumb.ibb.co/dpCPre/IMG_9702.jpg) (https://ibb.co/dpCPre) (https://thumb.ibb.co/iny8HK/IMG_9703.jpg) (https://ibb.co/iny8HK) (https://thumb.ibb.co/fSO8HK/IMG_9704.jpg) (https://ibb.co/fSO8HK) (https://thumb.ibb.co/nosqWe/IMG_9708.jpg) (https://ibb.co/nosqWe) (https://thumb.ibb.co/kisqWe/IMG_9714.jpg) (https://ibb.co/kisqWe) (https://thumb.ibb.co/mJrvxK/IMG_9716.jpg) (https://ibb.co/mJrvxK)
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: revision on September 28, 2018, 17:27:47 PM
So I learned some more stuff.  The boat really does draw almost 7 feet, that's not a typo.  It's built to the box rule, so the mast is subsequently shorter to compensate.  Also, the keel cannot be removed from the boat without significant cutting of the structures...it is bolted but is also extensively glassed in place.  Any work has to be done on the boat.
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: JurgenP on November 14, 2018, 12:07:03 PM
Did Daniel finally get this boat? As far as I can tell she is still on the market, though Brewer Yachts is not in a hurry to reply to my inquiries.


A little over a year ago a friend of mine started building a new Mini designed by VPLP design (France).
From that time I have been considering to do the same, but after finding this girl on yachtworld I was thinking that she might be a good compromise between the time needed to build, budget and performance.
I assumed it would take a lot less time to restore her than build a new one from scratch. And the keel was not necessary an problem, it might as well be seen as an opportunity to make the move to a canting keel ...
However after the pictures I have seen I'm not so sure anymore ... She might not be worth the shipping price.


I have also been trying to get a hold of Chris Pitts, so far to no avail.
I also requested the class Mini 650 association for any documentation they have on her:
they have nothing, she never was officially measured and  hence also never (officially) raced.


I would welcome any additional information on her beyond what is in this thread and on the Yachtworld site, feel free to contact me.


Sincerely,
Jurgen
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: revision on November 14, 2018, 12:25:24 PM
To my knowledge, she is still for sale at Brewer.  I would imagine they may be busy hauling boats this time of year...if she IS still there, she's now buried in the back behind about 80 boats.  The broker had asked for any information I may find, so I did email him back regarding the discussions that I had with Chris, but he never got back to me via email.  If you call, he's pretty good about calling back.

You are correct in that Chris didn't race her in the transat...he made the jump to Class 40 before he got there and his intention was always for a far northern race, hence the "radical" design cues.  I drive up and down the coast a couple times a year for holidays and such so I may cruise by RI at some point this winter and see if she's still in place.  Hopefully they shifted her weight so that she drains...
- R
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: JurgenP on November 14, 2018, 12:43:55 PM
Thank for that reply, Revision.


Would it be a terrible burned to mail me those discussions you had with Chris as wel?


Sincerely,
Jurgen
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: revision on November 15, 2018, 12:56:34 PM
Sure.  The discussions I had with Chris were via phone and the info is mostly all in this thread. 

A couple points I may have missed are that he is in Florida now and, and if someone bought the boat and get it to him, he is willing to do the work to fix the boat and build a new mast for the estimated amounts listed above and return her paint ready.  The numbers I listed ($6500 for cedar/carbon mast, $8k-10K in hull work) are direct from Chris based on discussions over the phone regarding her condition.  He hadn't seen pics at that time and did not seem to be aware that she was for sale.

As mentioned, you'd need a trailer on top of that as well as new sails, running rigging, paint, fit out, etc.

We also talked awhile regarding some of the cool nuances of the boat...the roller on the transom is a fairlead for an anchor, the cockpit locker is designed to perfectly hold a honda suitcase generator, etc etc.  He said were he to do it again, he would build the carbon/cedar spar hollow this time to allow for internal halyards and go to one set of spreaders as opposed to 2.

He said that the boat was built during his time in Canada and that she was designed to do a specific race that runs between Greenland and Iceland...I googled but can't find the name now, but that's why she has high freeboard, etc...the design was for high latitude sailing.  He didn't make it to that race before moving on to bigger boats, but he did set a speed record for circumnavigating Newfoundland.  He ultimately sold the boat to one of the crew from the J-class yachts. 

Regarding the construction. she is tortured okoume ply throughout the hull and deck, with the exception being mahogany in the cockpit, carbon inner and outer skins.  The keel is a 1.5" high carbon steel rod and he highly recommended AGAINST removing it in any way...the keel is integral and gridwork is extensive.  He said any repairs he would recommend doing in place provided that the steel is still usable after the damage.  The keel is a specific foil profile and must remain as such in order for the boat to be fast...I have it written down somewhere.
All in all, my discussions with Chris were very amenable and I believe that whoever takes on the project can count him an ally.  The broker had asked that I tell him any information that I may find out regarding the boat so I emailed him all of this and he should therefor be aware,.  In full disclosure, I also made an offer on the boat but have as of yet not heard back from them.  Unless they moved her, she is inaccessible until the spring as they fill their yard with boats for winter storage.  I am happy to facilitate on this end if you are interested. 

Where are you located?  What was the budget for your friend's new build?  You mentioned not being able to reach Chris...where are you trying to reach him?  Also you mentioned that mini association never officially measured her; I did check with the North American mini class and they said that she was a properly licensed mini.

- R 
Title: Re: Chris Pitts Mini 565
Post by: JurgenP on November 15, 2018, 21:28:08 PM

Sure.  The discussions I had with Chris were via phone and the info is mostly all in this thread. 


A couple points I may have missed are that he is in Florida now and, and if someone bought the boat and get it to him, he is willing to do the work to fix the boat and build a new mast for the estimated amounts listed above and return her paint ready.  The numbers I listed ($6500 for cedar/carbon mast, $8k-10K in hull work) are direct from Chris based on discussions over the phone regarding her condition.  He hadn't seen pics at that time and did not seem to be aware that she was for sale.


As mentioned, you'd need a trailer on top of that as well as new sails, running rigging, paint, fit out, etc.


I guess the hull work would be mostly manhours and to a lesser extend materials, so if you know how to do it yourself I would guess one could bring that down significantly.
Going for a full carbon mast (SELDEN?) then again would add to the cost. And considering she is overweight, it makes me wonder if that would
One thing that I didn't understand very well is why he used a carbon-covered cedar mast, and a full one at that. Red cedar is good at taking compression when building the mast, but it is heavy!
Something one hardly ever wants and definately for a racing tub like a mini 650.
I never build a mast myself, but I have been wondering if one couldn't just use an aluminium mast as mandril?




We also talked awhile regarding some of the cool nuances of the boat...the roller on the transom is a fairlead for an anchor, the cockpit locker is designed to perfectly hold a honda suitcase generator, etc etc.  He said were he to do it again, he would build the carbon/cedar spar hollow this time to allow for internal halyards and go to one set of spreaders as opposed to 2.


Glad to see Chris and I agree on that mast, both on the weight issue as well as keeping your deck tidy: run as much as possible up that mast internally: halyards, electrical wires (top light, windex, antenna's...)


He said that the boat was built during his time in Canada and that she was designed to do a specific race that runs between Greenland and Iceland...I googled but can't find the name now, but that's why she has high freeboard, etc...the design was for high latitude sailing.  He didn't make it to that race before moving on to bigger boats, but he did set a speed record for circumnavigating Newfoundland.  He ultimately sold the boat to one of the crew from the J-class yachts. 


She wouldn't serve well with that extra weight in the lower lattitudes (like a transat), but she might be interesting around here for something like the "Fastnet"-race.
It can be choppy, and it is not all downwind like the transat.


Regarding the construction. she is tortured okoume ply throughout the hull and deck, with the exception being mahogany in the cockpit, carbon inner and outer skins.  The keel is a 1.5" high carbon steel rod and he highly recommended AGAINST removing it in any way...the keel is integral and gridwork is extensive.  He said any repairs he would recommend doing in place provided that the steel is still usable after the damage.  The keel is a specific foil profile and must remain as such in order for the boat to be fast...I have it written down somewhere.
That keel might have been an issue for transport. She would fit a lot better in a 40' sea container without her keel that with it.
Does that mean that a canting keel would be out of the question or would that work provided that she adheres to (mostly) the same profile.




All in all, my discussions with Chris were very amenable and I believe that whoever takes on the project can count him an ally.  The broker had asked that I tell him any information that I may find out regarding the boat so I emailed him all of this and he should therefor be aware,.  In full disclosure, I also made an offer on the boat but have as of yet not heard back from them.  Unless they moved her, she is inaccessible until the spring as they fill their yard with boats for winter storage.  I am happy to facilitate on this end if you are interested. 


Where are you located?  What was the budget for your friend's new build?  You mentioned not being able to reach Chris...where are you trying to reach him?  Also you mentioned that mini association never officially measured her; I did check with the North American mini class and they said that she was a properly licensed mini.


I tried to connect with Chris on LinkedIn, but no luck yet. What I would have needed the most are any plans/documentation he had of her. Also any documentation/pictures of her being build would have been interesting as well as homebuild boats older than 5 years are exempt of the CE certification as defined in the EU Recreational craft directive (2013/53/EU) but one has to document her being homebuild.
If not she would need to be post-build assessed, cost: roughly $2000.


As for Jay's Mini, I would have to ask him. But I would imagine being limited.
He is a shipwright that works on boats that participate in the Vendee Globe and the Route Du Rhum and the like. And the plans he got for free from VPLP Design (google them if you don't know them), at they are using the boat to test certain new features. So it would pretty much come down to the cost of the materials.


And I'm from Belgium, so shipping cost would be high. Probably more than the boat is worth at this moment. She would need a cradle and be put in a 40' sea container, and loaded either in Newport RI or Baltimore MD.
If you feel up to the task to 'rescue' her, by all means ... Nevertheless the offer to facilitate things on your end was quite nice, especially considering you also made a bid on her.


Sincerely,
Jurgen