Ocean Belle is a Fairline Turbo 36 motor boat – 40′ length overall (LOA).
Our last boat, Mobby (Mobby can just be seen behind and to the right of OB) was a 28′ single engine motor boat, and we found the living space a little cramped, with the main double berth also the dining suite. This was particularly awkward in the mornings when we all had to get up before we could prepare breakfast.
We were looking for a 32 – 34′ boat with twin engines, and a separate main cabin. Initially the boat of closest interest was the Corvette 32, which although only 32′ boasted a huge deck area with its Trader style layout. Alternative interest was the Aquastar 32, with a lovely aft cabin and a real heavy weather seaboat.
We found Ocean Belle by chance whilst on a trip to Fowey to view a Corvette 32, which was simply beyond sensible purchase. As a consolation I noted a Fairline Turbo 36 on a Plymouth Brokerage, and a viewing was arranged.
Having initially been blown away by her sheer size, the interior layout and indeed remarkable condition (for the price – unlike the Corvette we had seen the day before !) virtually sold her to us on the spot.
The Key Selling Points of the Turbo 36 are the Aft Cabin – almost the size of a double bedroom, and with a proper walk-around ‘Island’ bed & with its own en-suite heads & shower room, the large main saloon cabin, and the ease of access around the decks.The main cabin is light airy and huge, with open galley down a few steps forward, with the main heads and shower adjacent. The galley is of reasonable size and is ample for cooking a roast dinner.
We made an unusual arrangement of undertaking the Survey prior to offer. Michael the owner had arranged for her to be lifted to have the bottom cleaned, so this presented an ideal time to get the survey done, without the extra cost of the lift. The survey report found the boat in remarkable condition, and importantly not only no signs of osmosis, an exceptionally dry hull especially for a boat that had been continuously immersed for several years.
The survey showed a few minor defects, plus highlighted some out of date safety gear, all easily remedied, but crucially She was in sound condition. There was sufficient niggles for me to argue a very good price, but also key to this was the fact She had become a millstone for Michael, who it was clear was willing to accept any sensible price.
So having bought her, we then had to move her back to our home base on the Hamble, so we packed up luggage, kids and dog, and after one visit by road with a car full of gear the next was a railway journey one way to Plymouth. We then spent 3 days waiting for the weather to turn fair, whilst the rest of the UK was beaten up during the August 2011 riots.
Eventually we had a leisurely cruise back via Weymouth for our first leg stop. Almost incident free save the Stbd engine overheating where some idiot had bodged a missing water drain cock. However, even on one engine Ocean Belle merrily plodded along at 9 knots, almost top speed for Mobby.
The repair for this took me about 1/2 an hour to get the engine back on with a temporary seal, and was fully fixed with a new sealing plug the next day, after some patronising advice from the local Volvo Penta ‘Expert’, who knew not so much about engines in general, and I did not let on that I am a Marine Engineer by profession – I needed his sealing plug first !