Born in San Francisco, Tom started his maritime career in 1972 working in a local shipyard on barges and tugs while volunteering aboard various sailing vessels such as the museum "scow" schooner ALMA, the schooners BRIGADOON, TALOFA and the racing yawl BARIENT BARUNA.
After graduating from the California Maritime Academy, Tom took his deck license and served as a watch officer one foreign flag vessels ... and as Mate and Master on ocean towing and salvage vessels. Returning to San Francisco, he worked on local tugs and progressed his licenses to become a San Francisco Harbor Pilot ... and, eventually, moved North as a Puget Sound Pilot (Navy) for over 20yrs.
Throughout this time, Tom enjoyed restoring and sailing over thirteen different power and sailboats ... from a 40' light house tender to a 19' Lowell dory. He has extensive hand's on experience with wooden and fiberglass construction, repair operations, systems repair, and troubleshooting.
Tom is a member of SAMS and ABYC ... serves as an Accredited Survey (#1158) ... and participates continuing eduction in all technical areas of vessel construction, maintenance and outfitting.
Tom has also served in variety of capacities overseas - most recently with humanitarian efforts in Haiti. He's also developed an attraction for puttering around the canals of Europe and holds licenses for both the Netherlands and France.
Surveys are always a bit intrusive ... I mean - who likes to have their boat picked and poked!
So ... here's a short list of what to expect and what is entailed - along with some recommendations:
Pre Sale or Pre Purchase Site Visit
This is a basic 1hr+ visit to the vessel to take an initial impression of the condition and systems - handy if you're thinking about selling to have some of the "big ticket" concerns out of the way ... and handy if you're thinking about a particular vessel and are quite sure about the next step (or can't travel to see the boat just yet!)
Pre Purchase Condition and Valuation
This is the comprehensive survey of a vessel as a contigency of purchase ... it covers all areas of safety and structure, systems, general operation, and appraisal to USCG, ABYC, and NFPA standards. The report details the systems and contains field notes, along with a complete valuation, findings and recommendations for shortfalls or issues, and photo documentation.
A re-insurance survey is a periodic review of your vessel to validate its condition and operation for your underwriter. While it covers the same level of detail for structure and systems as a pre-purchase survey, it generally doesn't require a haul out.
Life happens! When unfortunate accidents or damage occurs, many times underwriters call in a surveyor to ascertain extend, recommend options, and even superintend repairs.
Ok ... what's it cost! First off ... just a note to say that the preliminary work, review of field notes, and generation of the reports takes as much time as the actual survey aboard - - - so:
PRE PURCHASE SURVEYS (2019)
Vessels up to 30' Length Overall $17/foot
Vessels from 31-36' LOA. $18/foot
Vessels from 37-47' LOA. $19/foot
Vessels from 48-58' LOA. $20/foot
Vessels over 59' LOA - by contract
Within 45minutes of Poulsbo Within base rate
Tacoma. $40 + bridge toll
Seattle. $100 + ferry (seasonal only)
Everett $80 + ferry (seasonal only)
Edmonds. Ferry fare only
Olympia. $60 + bridge tool
Port Angeles. $80
Vessels of Wooden Construction
Add $2/foot to the LOA charge ... Why is that??? Wooden vessels are more complex and deserve more concerted inspection time devoted ... especially older/restored classics.
Oil and fluid samples are handy for lab analysis of the engine's lubrication, coolant, and transmission/reduction gear.
Samples run $40/ ... and take about a week to get back from the lab.
As mentioned ... we conduct 1+ hr site visits for clients to a boat they might be considering or planning to sell.
For those thinking about buying ... sometimes you can't travel to the boat ... or aren't entirely sure you're ready. A site visit is an overview of major issues or concerns, validates general condition, and gives a "impartial" eye to the process. If you can't attend, an email summary with 8-10 photos is provided. Fees run from $120-$250 ... and if a complete survey is pursued then the fee is deducted from the full survey amount.
Thinking of selling? A site visit can give you an overview of major areas you might wish to attend to ... or some options to pursue to make the boat more attractive to buyers. Sometimes its handy to have the impartial view help you decide price, consider repairs you might not have noticed, or simply give you some confidence when you get ready for the day when "that surveyor" comes to pick your boat apart! : )
"Tom performed a condition and valuation survey on my Grand Banks 32 as required by my insurance company. He did a superb job, demonstrating extensive knowledge of boat construction and operation as well as current ABYC and regulatory standards. In addition he passed on many useful recommendations to make the boat better, and also promoting a safe and reliable boating experience. Very highly recommended!" (Thanks Steve)
"Thomas's surveys are thorough and high quality ... He has surveyed three boats for me and will survey the next as well". Thanks Marcus
"Thomas really saved my boat." Thanks Nic!
Oh there's a few more on Google if you like ... we strive to be objective and fair ... give honest appraisals ... and maintain the level of ethics and service that all SAMS Surveyors provide.
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