Today was Smok’s survey! We were very lucky to be encouraged by our surveyor, Ben Sutcliffe, to attend the survey. Not only was it a great opportunity to see what lies beneath the waterline, but we also had the chance to ask endless questions while Ben worked. He was immensely kind, answering all our queries patiently without ever being patronising. We learned a great deal about our new narrowboat. Please, if you are considering buying a boat, do attend the survey. You won’t regret it.
Smok is an Amber boat, and having done my research, I am well aware that there is a degree of controversy about the company. This seems to have generated some suspicion about the quality of their craft. We were therefore very relieved and excited to find out that Smok is extremely well engineered. Ben was hugely impresed that the Polish factory could produce such superb quality.
Among the many plus points Ben noted were the beautifully shaped swim; the lovely paintwork; the properly placed HIN (hull identification number) on the outside of the hull; the lovely sliding doors between the cabins, which slip neatly into a double skinned wall; the extra stops where the rudder meets the hull to prevent excess wear; little steps built into the hull and going up the the roof; the powerful generator; the sensible positioning of all engine and electrical components away from the cabins; the two waste holding tanks for the toilet; the study… the list went on and on!
After some discussion with the staff at the marina, Ben told us that it looked as if Smok was well known on the cut, and that she was probably a show vessel for Amber boats, hence all the impressive details. He felt that we had secured her for a very fair price, and that Smok would hold her value well. What a fantastic result!