We continued our search. Generally, I was of the opinion that it would be better to pay more for something that was ready to sail, rather than pay less and have something requiring lots of work. But Jenni didn’t like the look of any of the boats we saw, many of which had a daggerboard or centreboard case through the middle of the boat, taking up valuable cabin space. Then an Investigator 563 came up for sale, and at a very reasonable price. It didn’t look too bad from the photos, but we decided to view before making any decisions, and thankfully it was only an hour away.

Mokum had been owned by an older couple who had enjoyed many years of sailing, but  due to health reasons were no longer able to sail. She was not in bad condition at all. The interior was clean but in need of a good paint. It had a light blue cabin roof inside, and a dark blue hatch cover on the outside, on an otherwise all white boat. The hull was sound but must have had had anti-foul on the hull at some point. However, the paint had mostly gone, so that was good.

Like many boats it hadn’t been used much in the last two years due to Covid lockdowns and was in pretty good condition, unlike the Careel we had seen the month earlier. It also came with lots of extras, spare fuel tanks, cushions, two anchors etc. and while we could see there was a fair bit of work to do, we liked the look and feel. So we bought her!

The first job for us was the trailer. While it had received a roadworthy pink slip, it was looking very rusty and worse for wear, and I was wary of taking it down the freeway without knowing that the bearings and brakes were in good condition. We were able to find a guy not far away who could take care of the trailer for us. We had new rollers added, new nylon runners, had the wheels and bearings all checked and had it painted with a good zinc coating. And while it took several weeks longer than anticipated, it looked a whole lot better. Money worth spending in my opinion.

We purchased Mokum knowing we were in for a bit of a project, but I was hoping to get away with a touch up here and there, a little bit of paint, perhaps some new ropes and lines and a general clean and polish. However, as we looked closer, it became clear. We have embarked on a project of a complete makeover. Can anyone relate? My wife, being the perfectionist, insisted that if we wanted the boat to look the best then there’s a lot of work to be done. So, we stripped her of everything but the toe rails and commenced the long, slow process of grinding, filling and sanding every hairline crack in the 40-year-old gelcoat. Too much? Tell me about it. I very soon needed physio work on my sanding arm!