Mustin's part-by-part look at hull, deck, rig, and machinery is both a minicourse for transforming used-boat shopping from a game of craps to a science, and the first step in a holistic boat maintenance program. His discussion of the significance of cracks found in aging hulls and decks is the most thorough in print. He is not shy in assessing the lack of regulation of professional surveyors, nor does he shrink from pointing a finger at shoddy building practices.
Having a used boat surveyed is a critical prelude to buying it. Yet a professional survey is expensive--several hundred dollars. "Surveying Fiberglass Sailboats" will enable you to conduct your own surveys while narrowing the field, then monitor a professional surveyor's performance when selecting your target boat.
"...one book we'd recommend to anyone looking at used boats (or new, for that matter)...[Mustin's] book shows you what and where to look for signs of trouble." Practical Sailor "Books about marine surveying are often overly technical and pedantic. Not so [this book]...It's a concisely written primer...Mustin is adept at distilling often highly involved subjects, so you should be able to learn the fundamentals of evaluating a vessel's major structures, systems and equipment." Sail