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Old 04-24-2009, 08:42 AM   #1
Can you pass the bailout please?
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Thinking about a used boat...

So, I'm thinking about trying to find a used boat. Nothing fancy, but something decent. I've never owned a boat (other than my jet ski) and I've driven one a few times, but I know very little about them.

So, my questions to you boat guys are:
1. If I buy from an individual, what should I look for to be good/bad?
2. Do you normally "test drive" a boat before you buy it?
3. Do boat dealers sell used boats too like car dealerships or do they just sell new ones?

Since this is my first boat, I'm not looking to spend a bunch of money... One day I'd like to get a nice boat that matches my truck, but not yet.

Thoughts?

EDIT: The three things I would like out of this boat:
1. Comfortable to hang out on the lake with a few friends and my dogs
2. Want to be able to fish from it
3. I wouldn't mind being able to pull a skier or tube, but this isn't a deal breaker.
I don't care about speed. I don't care about bling.
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Old 04-24-2009, 08:45 AM   #2
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine.
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First thing to check: NO HOLES IN THE HULL.
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Old 04-24-2009, 08:49 AM   #4
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine.
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Hopefully Roland will see this thread. He seems to know alot about boats.
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Old 04-24-2009, 08:52 AM   #6
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One thing I do know after having had a number of relatives with boats is that boat motors are EXPENSIVE. It seems like the parts and repair ( unless you do it yourself) is pretty pricey. I've heard generally good things about Johnson and Honda motors.
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Old 04-24-2009, 08:55 AM   #7
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Throw a little miracle grow on that money tree? lol

If I were to go buy a boat right now I would have to take it for an extended test drive.

A buddy of mine bought a ski supreme last year.. kinda old boat but the seller told him how he had just rebuilt the motor and it was in great shape blah blah. Well my friend bought the boat and had it for about a month till it BLEW UP!!! They were riding to a cove to go wakeboarding and booooom. It threw everyone off and 2 people had to go to the hospital with 2nd and 3rd degree burns.

Not trying to turn you away from buying a used boat but be very particular in looking it over and testdriving it.

What kinda boat are you looking for BTW?
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Old 04-24-2009, 08:55 AM   #8
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What you looking for a bass boat or a speed boat?

One thing I would do for sure is take it to a boat mechanic and have them check the compression on the motor. If it costs you a $100, it is well worth it. After the motor most other parts last a long time. Check all electrical, and make sure the trailer is in fine working order. It would be worth hooking it up and driving it around as well. You can hear bad hubs pretty easy.
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Old 04-24-2009, 08:56 AM   #9
Can you pass the bailout please?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobwilson1977 View Post
One thing I do know after having had a number of relatives with boats is that boat motors are EXPENSIVE. It seems like the parts and repair ( unless you do it yourself) is pretty pricey. I've heard generally good things about Johnson and Honda motors.
I've found that too... Happened to be at Gander Mountain one day and saw an old aluminum boat. The boat and trailer were $600-$700. I thought, wow, that's pretty cheap! Then, I saw the motors inside - $1500 for the LITTLE motor - 5hp or something! I think the 20hp motor was $3000 or something...
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Old 04-24-2009, 08:59 AM   #10
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another VERY key element to a boat

MAKE SURE THE BILGE PUMP WORKS
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Old 04-24-2009, 09:03 AM   #11
Can you pass the bailout please?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KoruptTaco View Post
Throw a little miracle grow on that money tree? lol

If I were to go buy a boat right now I would have to take it for an extended test drive.

A buddy of mine bought a ski supreme last year.. kinda old boat but the seller told him how he had just rebuilt the motor and it was in great shape blah blah. Well my friend bought the boat and had it for about a month till it BLEW UP!!! They were riding to a cove to go wakeboarding and booooom. It threw everyone off and 2 people had to go to the hospital with 2nd and 3rd degree burns.

Not trying to turn you away from buying a used boat but be very particular in looking it over and testdriving it.

What kinda boat are you looking for BTW?
Quote:
Originally Posted by hendooman View Post
What you looking for a bass boat or a speed boat?

One thing I would do for sure is take it to a boat mechanic and have them check the compression on the motor. If it costs you a $100, it is well worth it. After the motor most other parts last a long time. Check all electrical, and make sure the trailer is in fine working order. It would be worth hooking it up and driving it around as well. You can hear bad hubs pretty easy.
I don't want a true "bass boat"... I'd like a little deeper hull (that makes them smoother, right?) and something a bit more comfortable.

Maybe something like this:
http://minneapolis.craigslist.org/boa/1137802900.html

Is that considered a "speed boat"?? I'm really just interested in getting out on the water to enjoy being outside and being on the water. I wouldn't mind the ability to pull a skier/wakeboarder, but it's not my primary focus. Something that I can put my dogs in, fish from if I wanted to and launch myself.

That's kinda what I'm looking for. Is that generic enough???
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Old 04-24-2009, 09:08 AM   #12
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Good looking boat, but maybe a little tough to fish from. Reason being is that it is going to be tough to get into shallow water. Although in MN you might be fishing more deep water. Might look for a fish/ski, they are fibergalss, and scream with a 90hp or so motor. A lot lighter than the craigslist boat. Easy to work on as well. No problem pulling a skier either, and great for tubing because they create a little more of a wake. There are a lot of boats for sale out there right now. You can steal one...keep looking you will find the right one.
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Old 04-24-2009, 09:17 AM   #13
Can you pass the bailout please?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hendooman View Post
Good looking boat, but maybe a little tough to fish from. Reason being is that it is going to be tough to get into shallow water. Although in MN you might be fishing more deep water. Might look for a fish/ski, they are fibergalss, and scream with a 90hp or so motor. A lot lighter than the craigslist boat. Easy to work on as well. No problem pulling a skier either, and great for tubing because they create a little more of a wake. There are a lot of boats for sale out there right now. You can steal one...keep looking you will find the right one.
Thanks... Would you happen to have an example photo or make/model of the kind of boat you're talking about? Remember, I'm a little new to this subject, so I have to be helped along a bit...
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Old 04-24-2009, 09:20 AM   #14
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http://kansascity.craigslist.org/boa/1135327027.html

This boat is bad ass...witha 150 on it it would fly. Probably 65 MPH if planed out right. The downside with these boats is that you don't have all the people room, but for 4 people they work well.
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Old 04-24-2009, 09:30 AM   #16
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It depends on what you are looking for.
I personally don't have much experience with pleasure boats with inboard motors other than the boats my freinds have. Now bass boats and flatbottoms with outboard motors i can definately help.I have owned several boats the last few years and i have been around them all my life.

If you're looking at used boats i would go ahead and buy or borrow a compression gauge to take with me while looking at used boats from an individual,( a dealership that sells used boats will do this for you). checking the compression on the motor is hte first thing you would want
to check
after that i would pull the prop off and look at the splines on the output shaft and look for anything abnormal. I only say this because when i bought my last boat the owner had hit something which screwed up the prop and twisted the splines on the shaft, he then took another prop and somehow put it on long enough to sell the boat. I test drove it and everything was fine until about two weeks later when i was out and i thought i spun the bushing out of the prop, turns out prop was fine but the lower unit was screwed($2,500). this was also on a 200 Mercery though.
Another thing to check is what kind of shape the transom is in( where the motor mounts to the boat) if you push up on the motor from the foot you shouldn't be able to see or feel the transom move or flex at all, if it does the transom is weak or rotten. You can also look for spider cracks in the gel coat along the back of the boat to detect transom issue.if it's fiberglass boat. the motor and the transom are the two most expensive things to fix on a boat, everything else can be done yourself as far as electronics/ wiring/ trailer and interior goes.


i would definately test drive the boat and several different types of boats before i made a decision since this will be your first boat. This will ensure that you get what you need for the use you will put it to. If you do buy from an individual, pull the boat with your truck and test drive not only the boat but how the trailer pulls ( some boats pull great depending how the weight is balanced, others suck) and this will help too.

I'm at work right now so i might have forgot a few things but just PM me and i'll be glad to answer what i can.

these are the main things that come to mind right now.
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Old 04-24-2009, 09:40 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LonghornTaco View Post
Thanks... Would you happen to have an example photo or make/model of the kind of boat you're talking about? Remember, I'm a little new to this subject, so I have to be helped along a bit...

Check out either fish/ ski or ski/ fish models under the following manufactures:
Javelin
Stratos
Hydrasport
Tahoe
ProCraft

A fish/ ski model will be more fishing oriented with trolling motors/ live wells/ rod storage

A ski/ fish will be the opposite. Less fishing options but the same layout.

A fish/ski with a 90hp-150hp would be ideal for what you're looking for it sounds like. Anyhting over a 150hp motor is fun but not really practical on a fish/ski boat. Plus outboard motors are easier to maintain and winterize to me anyways
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Old 04-24-2009, 09:42 AM   #19
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine.
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I got my boat used. I have a friend who is a boat guru, and I had him check everything out for me before the purchase. I prefer outboad engines, as they are a little more easy to work on. Also, There is a difference the way the H.P. is rated. An out board engine's h.p. rateing is at the prop, where as an inboad is rated at the crank.
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Old 04-24-2009, 10:00 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LonghornTaco View Post
Awesome! Thanks for those tips...

Is there a big difference between inboard and outboard motors other than the type? Is one easier/harder to work on, more/less expensive to buy/fix, etc?
Inboards are usually 4 stroke car engines more or less. you can get a 2.0 4 cyl or you can get a blown 454 V8. The inboard motor is as complicated as the make of the motor. Some are very easy to work on and fairly cheap where others are outrageous just like cars. The most expensive difference is the outdrive on an inboard, this can be very costly when it goes out on certain makes.
An outboard is available either in a 2-stroke or a 4-stroke. I'm not sure of maintenance costs on a 4-stroke but a 2 is fairly cheap if you can do the work yourself. Outboards are easier to work on obvisouly since the drive system and powerhead are outside the boat.
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