Forum - Keel and Centre Plate - Checking keel area before buying

All Topics

TopicRepliesLatest Post
Checking keel area before buying 4Wed 18 Sep 2019 21:50:36
Kingfisher Kingfisher Tue 17 Sep 2019 17:46:33 Hi all,

We have been looking at various 18-20' trailer sailers and one which has particularly caught our eye is a Manta 19. I know it has been on the trailer for quite a while so one of my concerns is the lifting keel. As we're viewing it on the trailer there isn't really the option to look at the keel before buying without spending a fortune framing
(so if we buy we'll assume the worst and set aside money to sort major problems if necessary), but could anyone tell me what we might be able to check in the keel area? How do you get at the pivoting bolts for example? Are there any ways of getting a glimpse of the keel and if so are there any danger signs we might be able to spot? Anything inside or under the hull we should particularly be looking at?

That doesn't just go for the keel actually - are there any common Manta issues we might need to look for (above and beyond what you'd look for in any other boat)?

The boat is priced to include some work so I don't mind too much if there are a few issues, but it would be good to know as much as possible!

Hoping to join the ranks of Manta owners soon!


Kingfisher Kingfisher Tue 17 Sep 2019 17:50:02 For framing read craning - silly autocorrect!
Mark Mark Tue 17 Sep 2019 19:43:15 The keel and leaky windows are probably the most common problems that people ask about. Check under the seat cushions and in the berth lockers for signs of water/musty smells.

The window seals are quite easy and not expensive to get sorted - I think one owner got AutoGlass to come to come and fit new seals for them.

The lifting centre plate is relatively straight forward to sort out but it is hard to inspect when the boat is on it's trailer. There's quite a bit in the forums about the centre plate.

Some owners have had problems with corroded keel bolts and these would be one the most difficult things to get sorted as the rear keel bolt is only accessible from within the centre-plate housing. I;ve not had to do Sophie's bolts but Mekicevica wrote a blog about sorting out his keel bolts. He gave his Manta away a few years ago but he still might be contactable by sending him a private message if you need more info.

All of the above problems are very common for old boats. Manta's are very simple boats and very low maintenance so really just have a good look over the condition of the hull, mast and rigging and hopefully that will cover most of the important things.

Hope that helps smile
Kingfisher Kingfisher Wed 18 Sep 2019 12:59:38 Thanks, that's really helpful. I'll have a read of the other posts about the keel.

I've looked at the blog you mentioned and it seems that there were some telltale rusty streaks around the keel area of the hull so that's definitely something to look out for!

Can you see the bolts from anywhere? Is it just taking them out that's the tricky bit or are they completely hidden? Just wondering how you find out if they're corroded! If they're visible from inside that would make life a lot easier.

Hoping to get a proper look at the boat in the not too distant future!
Mark Mark Wed 18 Sep 2019 21:50:36 The bolts are not visible. If you look inside the cabin under the floor boards you can see where some of the bolts are but they are fibre glassed over so you can actually see them.

This Site Uses Cookies

Please read our Privacy Policy for full details.