The Whitby Brewer Sailboat Association held it’s Annual Rendezvous on 2-4 October 2017. We are a small, but dedicated, group of sailors who love our old boats. The Whitby 42 was designed by Ted Brewer and began production in 1973 in Ottawa, branched into the redesigned Brewer 12.8 and ceased production in the 1990’s. The boats are heavy, comfortable cruisers, most of them ketches. Our members enjoy having an outside speaker to bring knowledge to share during our Rendezvous and this year they suggested finding a surveyor. I happened on Karen Alt’s website in my search and reached out to invite her.
Karen’s talk was the highlight of our gathering this year. She brought a heartfelt love of sailing craft to her very professional presentation. She began by giving us some pointers on getting our boats ready for sale, since that is when many surveys happen. She stressed cleaning the boat and reducing the amount of worn-out gear aboard, in addition to understanding how to deal with hull blistering and other conditions found in old boats.
She spoke about the different situations in which a survey is performed and how she conducts a survey. We were very impressed with the time and rigor that she described as she works over a boat’s systems and structure. She brought photos to show how she documents her surveys. Several of the photos were of a Whitby 42 that she had recently surveyed, so she could show us particular areas of concerns on our type of boat. She also discussed how to work with insurance companies and how to document a claim. One crew in our membership has their Whitby in the BVI and is waiting word on her condition after tipping over in a yard during Hurricane Irma, so Karen was able to spend some time answering their questions.
Karen’s experience, gained over a lifetime of apprenticeship in a professional mariner family is vast. She easily demonstrated proficiency in her chosen craft and impressed us with her interest in her work and continuing education. Our Rendezvous attendees were very pleased with the time and expertise that she contributed to our gathering.
Cindy Ann Bowers
Whitby Brewer Sailboat Association Coordinator
SV Red Ranger (Whitby 42, hull #188)
Karen completed the sea-trial for me when I was purchasing my 2005, 42 Regal in 2010. The boat was a bank-repo so I had concerns and worries about perhaps some hidden problems.
Karen went over the boat with a fine-tooth comb (in 105-degree heat) and founds several items that the dealer then fixed. I was able to buy the boat feeling confident that if there had been anything serious, Karen would've found it. A year later that has still proven true--she is a true professional. Marty
Marty is one of the returning customers we are so proud of. He had us survey his 50 Viking in 2015. Thanks for the kind remarks!
I cannot say enough good things about Karen and her abilities as a marine surveyor…
A friend (who happens to be an executive for Boat US) initially referred me to Anchor Marine to survey a 2006 Century 2200 CC I had been considering for purchase. I immediately hired Karen, not only because I found out she learned the business from her father (a renowned surveyor in the mid-Atlantic), but also because of the immediate trust created through our mutual law enforcement backgrounds.
In advance of the survey, we communicated by telephone and email on several occasions and I found that she was very responsive to my questions and messages. We seemed to hit it off well on the phone and Karen invited me to be present on the day of the survey…which was nice since most surveyors don’t like others to be around while they work.
Firsthand, I observed that Karen was very thorough, knowledgeable and more than willing to crawl around to get the job done. More importantly though, she was patient and personable with me throughout the process, which allowed me to learn a lot.
In sum, Karen provided me with the information and tools to negotiate the best possible deal. I’m not sure I could have done as well in negotiations if I had not had the benefit of Karen’s critical eye and the information she provided to me. I wholeheartedly recommend her work. Gerry