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post #1 of (permalink) Old 07-14-2003, 04:04 PM Thread Starter
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<font face="Trebuchet MS">Well here's the deal, I'm currently hoping to procure a boat sometime before next summer (before the end of this summer would rock, but will settle for next summer if need be)... It appears that I will not have the ability to buy new...

I believe I want something in the 20-30' range, that happens to be capable of travelling pretty fast, decent range, etc...

Any suggestions on what brands, etc are good, size issues, etc... I'm hoping to get a chance to take it out on the Great Lakes and some inland lakes...

If I do happen upon a decent looking deal on something that fits the description, what exactly do I look for to see if it's good or not? Know of any good sites with tips, the basics, etc???

Thanks for any help y'all can supply...</font>
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 07-14-2003, 04:26 PM
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Re: Boats???

Wish we could just get a ski boat! [img]images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img]
Anyway, here's a couple links I used when we were in the market a couple years ago.
(Before the wife decided to get a new rig, and blow off the boat for a while. [img]images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img] )
The Marine Do It Yourselfer
LakeLand Boating Message Boards
There's got to be a few more if you let your fingers do the walking through the good ole www. [img]images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 07-14-2003, 11:08 PM
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Re: Boats???

The best luck I have had with a boat was a full inboard freshwater cooled deadrise . Very relaible and sbc parts were cheap . I will never own another outboard over a 9.9 . I will only take the 9.9 because some places have a 10hp limit . Too bad you arent closer to here , I can get good deals on boats through my dad . Our family buisness up until about 10 years ago was building Wooden Boats out of Juniper . Now everyone wants Fiberglass boats . Guess I cant blame anyone though as the mainteance on a wood boat does take more time than a glass boat . Good luck with your hunt .
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 07-15-2003, 07:58 AM
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Re: Boats???

Hey Tim
It took me a long time to find mine, I got a lighter hull than some boats, but i was more concerned with the drivetrain
1991 ARRIVA 2445 454magnum (330hp) with a bravo 1 outdrive
It has a decent cuddy with bed, porta potti,2 chairs and freash water storage. Its a VERY fast boat, on GPS it runs 65mph They go for about 14,000, but i shopped around for a while, i bought mine for $7000 even, It could use some vinyl work and the gel coats pretty faded, but i wanted a solid/powerful drivetrain. tank is 75 gallon and i run midgrade, a tank will last about 3 days of driving unless you want to go fast, it'll burn it out in a day and a half.
Best thing you can do is have the hull/beams/stringers checked out for wetness (best $300 bucks you could ever spend). Best thing is to find a deal at the end of the season and offer the guy cash.
Big blocks all have bravo drives, and most smallblocks have alpha drives (try to get an alpha II if you go smallblock(1990-up??)
Big block say 25' runs anywhare from $10,000 - $20,000 in years from 1990-1996, for a smallblock, take off about $5,000-$6,000)
Most smallblocks run about 50MPH max on GPS
Big Blocks can run 55-75 max on GPS (Im taking off the mufflers to get somemore speed) always use GPS when testing the speed, for example, my speedo goes way past 60 and starts coming back around when Im doing like 55. Another thing to consider is props, if you have 300hp or more, you need Stainless, and they run from $350-$650 each (only buy mercruiser or equvilent) Hope all this helps, i had someone to educate me on boats and it helps a lot. BTW, a buddy of mine has a marina and they sell boats on consighnment (always tons of baots for sale around here) if ya want, give me your price range, and i can see what they have, a boats a hole in the water to throw money in, new or old
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 07-15-2003, 10:13 AM
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Re: Boats???

The g/f's dad just bought a deck boat.
They are kind of like a pontoon in that there is lots of room for passengers (14), but it has a full hull instead of pontoons. It has a 7.4 liter Volvo and runs pretty fast. ( We had it going about 50 at about 3/4 throttle the only time I was on it). A rear platform makes it nice to swim from.

Sorry I don't know much about boats, but I thought it was pretty cool for taking out a decent number of people without having to putt-putt around like a pontoon. It would probably pull a skier(unless there were a dozen others onboard). It would be also be good to fish from if you dont need to get into shallow water. I guess it depends on what you want to do with it.

Good luck [img]images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img]
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 07-15-2003, 01:03 PM
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Re: Boats???

The 7.4 is your std 300hp gm based 454 (same as mercruiser) the outdrive is probably one of those Duo props, which is a very good design, but extremly expensive to fix, (i rebuilt my bravo one, and it cost me about 3 grand and thats knowing people, the duo is about double)
BTW, 50mph on the speedo isnt really 50, most speedos on boats are way off once you go past 30mph (mines accurate till like 30 then it ranges from 5-15 mph off past that, and most boats i took my gps on show the same (even my buddies 2002 wellcraft scarab)
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 07-15-2003, 07:29 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Boats???

<font face="Comic Sans MS">I've not yet had a chance to sit down and figure out exactly what I'll be able to afford yet... In reality I won't be able to buy until this Fall or so... By then I should have around $10k saved up at least... What about something with 2 engines? Is that even a consideration for the given price range? I somehow doubt it, but I'm not sure... Would that introduce more potential problems than it's worth?

What sort of regulations are there regarding the licensing, registration, and operation of boats, or where do I find such info? I've never really ran one before, not sure of what the coast guard says I need, etc... How expensive is one of these things to license/register? Does it vary by size/power or something else?</font>
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 07-16-2003, 08:16 AM
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Re: Boats???

$10 grand will get you a decent boat, and since its cash, youll be able to bargin. I would wait on twins, douple the motors and outdrives= double the posibility of problems, outdrives are VERY expensive, a bravo 1 drive for a big block (upper and lower) cost about $2K-3K to rebuild and about $7K new, then you have a gimble bearing/housing (another $1000), just the trim pump for the drives cost $600-800 at COST, you putting it in. Registering is pretty cheap, no matter the size it cost me about $120 bucks for 3 yrs. Insurance is about $500 a yr if you have a good driving record (most insurance companies depreciate the parts, for example outdrive is 8000 over 8 yrs and you hit ground, theyll probably only give you $1500 for a rebuild and youll have to pay the rest.) just a few things to think about. My boat has a bad (good for me) power to size ratio so insurance is a little higher. Youll notice a huge diferance between a smallblock and big block (about 20mph and less time to plane) One thing to watch out for on 454 mags (330hp) is that they stay below 5000 rpms for the top speed. I run mine at 4800 with a 21pitch SS prop and she goes 63 on gps, i plan on removing the exhaust this winter and it should bring me to 5000 rpms and 5 more MPH (belive me, it gets addicting)
Boat US is my insurrer, but sometimes you can make an addition with your homeowners policy (really cheap and good coverage, frankenmuth wouldnt do mine because of the power to length ratio) My next boat will be a twin in the 30-40' range, im looking to spend 60K-80K for a ussed boat with twin 502's, lika a powerquest, sonic, advantage, or cigarette (those are basically the best offshore "V" hulls, my buddy has a 32' advantage with 502's and he runs 83mph on gps, he had a 23' "cat" with 2-300 yamaha outboards and that ran 110 on gps [img]images/graemlins/blush.gif[/img] with is way too fast, 50 on LkSt clair (next largest body of freash water) seems like 100, just ask one of my passengers after a weekend of doing 55 in chop [img]images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]
Let me know when your buying, thiers a ton of things to check for,,,,,,,just in the outdrives
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 07-18-2003, 09:11 PM
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Re: Boats???

I don't know anything about boats.

What little bit I have learned is that I'll probably never have anything but a jet boat if it isn't a pontoon. The whole idea of spending thousands on outboards or a sterndrive when they get tore off on a stump kind of scares me.

One time on Sanford Lake I ran across a guy in his fifties that built his own jet drives. He used 454s hooked to Powerglides to propel all his boats. Some of the stuff he did looked like a Sanford and Son job but he said it was reliable. He said one 23' he had was good for 70 knots but I'm not sure if I believe him.

Other than that, just look for soft spots in the fiberglass and other signs of lack of maintenance. If there is a hairline crack in a visible area available to weather it probably has water damage. Look for oil and gas spills around the powertrain because it'll chew through fiberglass in short order as well. Other than that, just look for jerry-rigging stuff especially wiring. Boat owners are often the stupidest people when it comes to wiring.

I'd just look through the various flavors of Wheeler-Dealer we've got here in Michigan and research the stuff you like that you find in it.
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