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Inventory, price, etc. - May 2024

Updated: Jun 18

With the enormous PITA/pushup of repairing the oil pan leak on the generator behind me, it's finally time to spin up the marketing for real. I need to set a price that is connected to current reality, and for me, the elements that make that up are:

  1. Inventory level for relevant units

  2. Apparent interest level

  3. Any unique considerations at my end

Filling in some detail...

Inventory - What do I mean by inventory? Obviously at least a Nordic Tug 42, but that's a little too crude for this purpose. I'm focused on a more specific boat and a more specific buyer. The qualities that make up the boat I'm selling are:

  1. "The good engine" - defined everywhere on this site. To me, the primary selling point. No EPA crap to break. No EPA crap intruding on the de minimis engine room space. No diesel fluid. And they ain't making any new ones. Thank you eco-utopian hobby-thinkers. I'd add that it's very low engine hours for its age (thank you Covid and The Gray Swan).

  2. Gen-2 interior layout. The advantage is that you aren't forced thru the pilot house to get to the master cabin and head. I think those (Gen-1) were made up until 2000?

  3. Flybridge - I think the big benefit of a FB is accelerated learning of low-speed boat-handling. A second point for some who think ahead might be a fully redundant operating position. Honestly, I moved to operating 100% from the pilot house during my first year.. I don't think everyone would though.. I did that because it was harder and I missed doing handling of heavy police motorcycles in tight/challenging spaces and it takes a huge number of hours to get passable, let alone good enough to instruct. But I still liked having a redundant operating position, and in fact had planned to build a hydraulic reserve tank up there to buy time in certain emergencies. Finally, I really did enjoy reading up there either in my slip or at anchor. I'm told the FB was a $50k option when new.

All 42's are not created equal. I held out 18 months to buy this combination.. that guaranteed-reliable-by-design engine mattered to me, just like the one (cast iron engine Toyota only used a couple of years) in my 20-yr-old GX with 300k mi on it. If I were to do it all again, I'd hold out for the first two points myself, but think a majority of boaters would not. Thanks to my job the last 40 years, I HATE complexity and can supply the specific technical reasons why on a moment's notice.. boats, cars, trucks, motorcycles, tractors. electronics, computers, design rules, etc. and prize design decisions and features that actually compliment a system's mission-worthiness. Systems that have been designed to give the best possible chance to complete the mission are very beautiful things.

There are other trinkets too. Like, I updated Clock Work's fore and aft positions to proportional thrusters with dock hold [BTW, I still have the original and fully functional bow thruster in my barn if anyone is interested]. In my opinion, the fore and aft thrusters will, for most, turn out to be "skills welfare" that are just too easy to use and will end up holding you back in tight spots or when your thruster thermals out. It's like those cars that park themselves. They're fine, but everyone knows that the guy who gets out after parking hands-off wouldn't have been hired by Shackleton. My purpose for that upgrade was 100% dock-hold the ability to single hand landings with no help. Those thrusters have something like minutes of use TOTAL on them.

Apparent Interest Level - When I jumped into this, one of my priorities was finding a good home for Clock Work. While I've met some great guys through this web site, I've met enough of the other kind that I'll do anything to avoid/escape them. When there is a pool of interested parties, you can focus on the guys who are the best match.

The past month, I've been working hard on cleaning up CW and my machine shop and my garage shop after putting the leak in its grave. Clean up (the bombed out crime scene where the leak was pursued for months, tools, materials, paperwork/photos from the project, the hull and superstructure) for anything significant takes days. And I also took maybe 3 days off after the big push. During that time, email has been coming in with subjects that indicate good interest (it's easy to tell moisture meter fanboys looking to crap on me from actually interested parties just from the subject). I'd say there's 7 or 8 guys in that pool and I haven't talked to them yet (hopefully today). I'll probably get several more when I post in the forums about the repair. And there will be a number of conversations started about the repair and, as the repair was fun (Reason #582 why I don't get invited to a lot of parties) I'm quite looking forward to a few of those. All this is to say there appears to be a good number of interested parties. I loved the time I spent on the repair on both the research and execution. The boats is looking GREAT now too after cleaning it from 0930 Sat until 1230am last Sunday. I'm using the version of "great" you end up using when the boat is some distance from water) across a dirt (mud) street. And officially, I'm burned out. Not last year type crippling pain... more long sadistic hockey practice pain. Rewarding, but you're still walking funny as you're still burned out. Not to mention all the things I couldn't get to for months. So there's a seeming high interest level, and a not-small demand for my time, so I'm going to follow a least resistance path this time. Whatever guy looks like he's presenting the least obstacle will hold my attention.

Any unique considerations present - I consider that I'm done working on CW., other than reconnecting the umbilical between the Reverso and the generator. I was used up and missed it last Sunday when I put the cabinet back together. There are a number of things listed in the readiness blog. I'll help the next owner learn how to do them. Things we'll want to discuss when we talk.


I've been closely watching NT42 inventory since I began to research them almost 2 yr before I bought mine. Looking at the current listing on YW before you have your morning coffee, it might first appear there are lots of 42's available. Except not really. Ignoring the plethora of listed boats that COULD BE MADE if you put an order in... and waited what I heard is now 2 years... and burn a million and then still at the end, get only the high-complexity lower-reliability engine (don't blame product planners at NT.. blame the hippies at whatever EPA drum-circle mandates this crap), you've whittled it down to 7 actually-real boats.

In that group of 7, there are two that can sort of compete for Clock Work's buyer on the most important parameter, the mechanical 6CT. As I said many times, not everyone will "get" why that matters. Not a problem. For me.

  • One of those is in Washington state for $545k... no flybridge. After talking with numerous interested parties on the west coast before Brandon so insightfully blew up fuel prices, I'd assume the ultimate east coast cost is closer to $600k with shipping.

  • The other is a 2001 in FL for 375. No FB and the Gen-1 interior layout. If those last two things aren't show stoppers, it looks like a nice boat at a good price.

  • The rest of the 7 miss on the engine or price (newer years). There's another Gen-1 with a Cummins 6B engine but given this whole process for me has been about reliability-by-design, I would personally not entertain the 6B (look up "killer dowel pin".. What did Strangelove say about doomsday devices?).


So.. a number. It appears I have a healthy level of interest, and it appears based on pricing within the depleted inventory, the supply and demand lines cross at 5-something. The one in WA lists for 545.. Gen-1. No FB. Wrong coast. I may revise this after I think about it more but I think $510k is the right place based upon current availability/interest. If you have a different number, tell me what you're thinking.

Thinking ahead - I've learned a lot of things during my time with Clock Work... things related to the design of the boat, maintenance of the boat, and operating the boat. That all came in through an experienced designer's perspective. IF I were still jazzed to own an ultimate 42, I would absolutely and without reservation not buy a new one... you can't get here from there. System Feature #1 would be a fully mechanical 6CT. They don't make those anymore you know. Finding one with low hours would be a priority. CW covers all that.

To stride more in the direction of ultimate-ness, more is needed. My list.. just as I sit here as a passionately committed non-boater, would include at these things... Yes, it's a crazy list but that's how creative end-points are often reached.

  1. I'd toss that f'ing lamp - not joking

  2. MOB recovery winch stbd cockpit

  3. Solar and inverters

  4. A spare for every pump on the boat.. I had these and kept them under the master berth.

  5. An elevator (just kidding)

  6. Crash pump in ER with radio notification of activation

  7. Remote notifier if any bilge runs longer than 2 min

  8. Remove and replace every factory zip tie in the engine room and lazarette and put them in right.

  9. Spare cummins engine panel near the main in the engine room.

  10. A hatch with a built in ladder above the starboard fairway.

  11. A hatch toward the aft of the port fairway large enough and structural enough to fit most of a generator.

  12. Layout the pilot house instrument panel more usefully.

  13. Layout the engine room in a more old-guy friendly way

  14. Remove the flybridge and sell it to someone who wants it for their 42. This is for me.. I know it would not be popular.

  15. In the nav station area, I'd install a complete amateur radio station. vhf through hf.

  16. Emergency propulsion system, powered by the generator - electrical --> hyd pump --> hyd motor --> quick-connect to shaft

  17. Inspection hatches, both fuel tanks

  18. Fuel polisher of my own design (much time spent thinking about it, and having seen a handful of efforts by low-hrs hobby-designers that don't/can't work) that can create a circulating current at the bottom of each tank.

  19. Have a low maintenance vinyl overlay made/fitted over the gunwale stripe on each side. I had worked out what I think was THE system for polishing/waxing that thing over several days (on the theory that order matters, and it did) but I can't access the electronic notebook where I recorded that and infinitely more important things.

  20. An emergency DC connector inside the lockable cabinet in the cockpit.. to apply DC if you need it off season.

  21. Compact machine shop/sewing station in the 2nd stateroom

  22. Depth charge rack

  23. More room on the upper deck for me to do/film yoga while in my speedo as I listen to soothing eastern music and auto-post it to my tic tock followers, or whatever they call that in China

Etc... Clock Work, plus whatever anyone wants for most custom mods would be a hell of a boat, and cost a great deal less than new. And would be more reliable.

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