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The Boat Fanatic Thread

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54 minutes ago, SMUlawUTgrad said:

I’ve always liked the idea of owning a boat but I fear the upkeep and cost would end up being too much.


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Yea, if that's a fear, it is well warranted.  I probably spend around a grand a year on maintenance alone for a 2001 bowrider, which includes the prop I'll inevitably have to repair at some point.

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$100 a day in gas for the boat, gas for the truck, ongoing maintenance costs, always something to deal with, expensive to store, still worth it every time we go out.

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Ownership costs vary. I’ve owned several boats over the last 20 years. My first boat I went in on with a buddy. Costs were low because we split everything. That’s the way to go if you are only going to use the boat occasionally.  Then I bought one on my own and the costs went up quiet a bit. Then I got into bass fishing and bought a bass boat that the wife wouldn’t be seen on. I currently own 2 boats. A bass boat in storage and a wake boat at the marina on lake Travis.  Now ownership costs quiet a bit but my whole family loves the lake. I have 3 teenage boys and a 21 year old daughter.  The bass boat is used almost every week of the year. March - October our weekend routine is for me and at least 1 of the boys to get up early and fish. Then trailer the bass boat and meet the rest of the family at the marina and spend the rest of the day on the wake boat.  I feel it’s money well spent. I’ve learned a lot about what’s going on in my kids lives and had a ton of fun on those boats.

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Boats aren't cheap no doubt. Last weekend ran up the coast 30 miles or so for lunch, probably burned 30-40 gallons @ $3.50 or so/gallon, not to mention dry rack storage, insurance, maintenance, etc

Worth every penny.

The Gulf was flat, sun was shining, perfect weather.

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42 minutes ago, HOOKEM4 said:

@G650 is laughing right now. "Maintenance" for that boat means you better be ready to write a 5 figure check, if you are lucky.

I wasn't trying to go all ChiTownDoc, but yes, I may have chortled once or twice...

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Boat operating costs vary wildy depending on use really. It's easier to be cheap with a powerboat, and either power or sail are infinitely more expensive when you race them.

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46 minutes ago, G650 said:

Boat operating costs vary wildy depending on use really. It's easier to be cheap with a powerboat, and either power or sail are infinitely more expensive when you race them.

There has been a bunch of talk of the decline of sailing. Is there a push I am missing for a more affordable sustainable option? The barriers for entry are going to be high for any competitive boating endeavor but isn't the current trajectory unsustainable? Boat builders need to come up with an affordable class that restricts exotic shit and keeps the campaign cost down. It cost me over 20k a year just to campaign a 40 year old J-24. Some of the costs are hard and nothing can be done to lower them but you have to buy the latest and greatest sails/gear and every year they get more exotic and ridiculous. Just doesn't make much sense long term to me if you want to protect the sport and even possibly grow it. /threadjack

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5 hours ago, Brew said:

Tapa is installed so catching up with pictures. 06 X-1 that’s probably my favorite wakeboard boat I’ve had at this point.

bf078bc15a716513d967aedef7791508.jpg

 

do you live by a carnival?

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2 hours ago, PvilleStang said:

$100 / day for fuel?!  We average about $20 / outing on the boat, maybe $10 in diesel for the tow rig.

We pretty well run all day when we are out. Between my kids, my nephews, and their friends the tubes and surf board are going nonstop. That $100 doesn’t count the jet ski’s which I probably run another $100 or so through on a busy day. The pontoon will run for a month on one tank.

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1 hour ago, HOOKEM4 said:

There has been a bunch of talk of the decline of sailing. Is there a push I am missing for a more affordable sustainable option? The barriers for entry are going to be high for any competitive boating endeavor but isn't the current trajectory unsustainable? Boat builders need to come up with an affordable class that restricts exotic shit and keeps the campaign cost down. It cost me over 20k a year just to campaign a 40 year old J-24. Some of the costs are hard and nothing can be done to lower them but you have to buy the latest and greatest sails/gear and every year they get more exotic and ridiculous. Just doesn't make much sense long term to me if you want to protect the sport and even possibly grow it. /threadjack

 

It's a good question, which I can't really give a good answer to other than smaller boats. Which a lot of people are doing btw. There's a lot of other stuff that I think are factors though, mostly cultural. Free time and how it's spent for one. Certain segments have always been eye bleedingly expensive, but all of a sudden numbers are plummeting.

The grand prix scene in the 40 foot range, which was the bread and butter, is a fricking wasteland right now. The running costs on these are around 200k to 300k a year for your average active campaign. But if you look at the 52s, which can run upward of a million a year, they are still going strong. So there is a lot at work, more than just money.

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Enjoying lake Travis this spring ... last few weeks on my colbalt. Axis should be on a trailer for Austin next week!!

 

Impromptu dinner by boat at rough hollow... Happy Easter ...

 

ce9fdf49345cde4580a505b0fd7787b7.jpg

 

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12 minutes ago, troph said:

Enjoying lake Travis this spring ... last few weeks on my colbalt. Axis should be on a trailer for Austin next week!!

Troph, I’m not giving the daquiri dude any clicks by going back and reading why you’re moving to the Axis - is it for surfing?

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Troph, I’m not giving the daquiri dude any clicks by going back and reading why you’re moving to the Axis - is it for surfing?


2001 colbalt 262 to a 2018 Axis 24 for surfing and reliability ... the old boat is getting old. I’d like a warranty and turnkey for service for a few years while I deal with alimony and shit. Plus my lady friend wants a surf boat, I like surfing and I need something to keep my boys active.

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You're in Texas... What's alimony?


Statutorily required spousal support/voluntarily agreed alimony are the two ways to alimony in Texas. I did the latter she thought she was entitled to the former.

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Ethanol free is pretty easy to find here.  There's at least one station on the four different routes I take to the ramp(s). 

Thinking about a 22-24ft bay boat. 2009 or newer.  I'd prefer 200+hp but I'd probably settle for 150.  Thinking: Ranger/Pathfinder/Triton/Skeeter/Shearwater and maybe a Sportsman on an outside chance.  Undecided on T-top or no T-top.    

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On 3/29/2018 at 9:36 AM, HOOKEM4 said:

There has been a bunch of talk of the decline of sailing. Is there a push I am missing for a more affordable sustainable option? The barriers for entry are going to be high for any competitive boating endeavor but isn't the current trajectory unsustainable? Boat builders need to come up with an affordable class that restricts exotic shit and keeps the campaign cost down. It cost me over 20k a year just to campaign a 40 year old J-24. Some of the costs are hard and nothing can be done to lower them but you have to buy the latest and greatest sails/gear and every year they get more exotic and ridiculous. Just doesn't make much sense long term to me if you want to protect the sport and even possibly grow it. /threadjack

It's not a sport for the commoner per se, but it can be.  BUT epending on the amount of free time you have, you really can do a lot of the work yourself. Of course, there is definitely a line you need to understand as to where your abilities end.  My major deficit is in the amount of time I have to dedicate to projects.  Sometimes, the value is there to just pay someone to fix something just so you can enjoy the boat for what it's designed for.  But I have found Youtube invaluable in walking me through various projects.

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Very true. We do most of the work ourselves but I dont have the time to do a full bottom job at this point in my life. Thankfully that isn't needed very often since I trailer store my boat. I got rid of my old J-24 last year because it needed a massive amount of work and I couldn't bring myself to put that kinda of jack into it.

Well, I found out my brother is wanting to get rid of his so I am the new owner of another GD 24. It is an 05ish Italian made jobby. Complete rocketship as that boat goes. My brother would argue it is the fastest one on the planet due to the massive amount of work that went into making every aspect from keel to mast fly perfect. Now I guess I have to get the band back together and start training for our inglorious return.

Edited by HOOKEM4

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4 hours ago, Sbbruin said:

It's not a sport for the commoner per se, but it can be.  BUT epending on the amount of free time you have, you really can do a lot of the work yourself. Of course, there is definitely a line you need to understand as to where your abilities end.  My major deficit is in the amount of time I have to dedicate to projects.  Sometimes, the value is there to just pay someone to fix something just so you can enjoy the boat for what it's designed for.  But I have found Youtube invaluable in walking me through various projects.

 

Yes and no. One of the biggest drivers of the 70s boom was affordability. Things like the Hobie Cat, the Laser, and various cheap production boats really drew the masses in. Simple, fun, fast. There are choices today, but not the same type, and they aren't marketed the same. A Laser is even expensive now. A 49er is a fast fun simple boat, but the are 25 fucking grand. There's cheaper boats, but they aren't as sexy, and on top of that people prioritize free time totally different now. I dont know the answer.

The other thing that depends is the ability to maintain your boat, from everything from skills to time to money. Sure, a 5ktsb anyone reasonably inclined can take care of. But a new race boat takes an incredible amount of very specialized skill, gobs of time, and loads of money. The skill probably being the most limiting factor really. There is literally no one in my area but me that can maintain the systems on the Farr 400, no matter the amount of money.

 

4 hours ago, HOOKEM4 said:

Very true. We do most of the work ourselves but I dont have the time to do a full bottom job at this point in my life. Thankfully that isn't needed very often since I trailer store my boat. I got rid of my old J-24 last year because it needed a massive amount of work and I couldn't bring myself to put that kinda of jack into it.

Well, I found out my brother is wanting to get rid of his so I am the new owner of another GD 24. It is an 05ish Italian made jobby. Complete rocketship as that boat goes. My brother would argue it is the fastest one on the planet due to the massive amount of work that went into making every aspect from keel to mast fly perfect. Now I guess I have to get the band back together and start training for our inglorious return.

 

You are a masochist sir.

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6 hours ago, bigshark88 said:

Ethanol free is pretty easy to find here.  There's at least one station on the four different routes I take to the ramp(s). 

Thinking about a 22-24ft bay boat. 2009 or newer.  I'd prefer 200+hp but I'd probably settle for 150.  Thinking: Ranger/Pathfinder/Triton/Skeeter/Shearwater and maybe a Sportsman on an outside chance.  Undecided on T-top or no T-top.    

That’s the market I’m shopping in as well. I’ve been looking at Ranger/Parhfinder/Sea Hunt BXBR/Sportsman and off and on at Robalo Caymans. I’m looking for one to use in the river locally and on the coast several times a year.

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8 hours ago, bigshark88 said:

Ethanol free is pretty easy to find here.  There's at least one station on the four different routes I take to the ramp(s). 

Thinking about a 22-24ft bay boat. 2009 or newer.  I'd prefer 200+hp but I'd probably settle for 150.  Thinking: Ranger/Pathfinder/Triton/Skeeter/Shearwater and maybe a Sportsman on an outside chance.  Undecided on T-top or no T-top.    

The sportsmans don't have the build quality of the others you listed imo. PF/SW, then Ranger/Triton/Skeeter.

Being in Fla, I'd add a L&B Backwater to the list, I've always liked those. I'm a firm proponent as putting the biggest reliable motor you can on the stern. 

Or you can skip your kids going to college and get a Morada...

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Curious why you guys looking for deeper draft bay boats aren't considering Blue Waves? My BIL has one he runs down in Galveston and it's been a good boat. I've always been partial to Pathfinders for no reason except how they look.

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8 minutes ago, Yarbr said:

Curious why you guys looking for deeper draft bay boats aren't considering Blue Waves? My BIL has one he runs down in Galveston and it's been a good boat. I've always been partial to Pathfinders for no reason except how they look.

Because they are nearly as expensive as a PF with much less of the resale benefits, and about 10 years ago they were an entry level bay boat built in Oklahoma. It's hard to shake that reputation imo. 

Of the previous list, the PF, SW, and Ranger will hold the best value. Bay rangers aren't all that popular in TX, can't speak to Fla. 

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Question to those who've ever had a prop "re-worked". 

I had a 26" Bravo 1 that would put my boat with full load at 64.5mph when new. It was my "everyday" prop for hauling 3-4 people with strong holeshot. I put about 250 hours on the prop, and it was down to about 61 or so with a load.  Decided to have it freshened up from a very reputable prop guy in Houston. He even commented on how great it looked for the hours when I was chatting with him.  Got it back and now I can't pull over 59 with it with medium load. It still revs exactly same (not over/underrevving) which leads me to believe he didn't adjust the pitch any. The hole shot is not appreciably different, better or worse. It has a removable and new hub in it, so not slipping.  The speed is just gone.  This was the first time I've ever had one freshened up.  Before I take it back asking wtf, I thought I'd ask any of those who've been thru the process. I was expecting some increase from where I was, especially since he started with a pretty damn good prop (no dings, nothing bent, not shallow holeshot abused).  

tldr - I paid a very reputable shop a few hundred bucks to lose speed. 

I'm ordering a new 28" B1FS to take this ones place but still would like to at least get what I paid for. 

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On 3/29/2018 at 7:45 AM, SMUlawUTgrad said:

I’ve always liked the idea of owning a boat but I fear the upkeep and cost would end up being too much.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

You are 100% correct.

 

But, still...

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On 3/29/2018 at 7:45 AM, SMUlawUTgrad said:

I’ve always liked the idea of owning a boat but I fear the upkeep and cost would end up being too much.

This is a pretty good summary of my annual expenses for my 17 year old 21' wake boat; I haven't had any "major" expenses (replacing engine, etc):

insurance                     $(300.00)    
yearly locker rent     $(1,440.00)    
service/maint           $(1,000.00)    (low cost year = $250, and I do my own minor maintenance)
depreciation                $(500.00)    
registration                  $(100.00)    
gas/oil                          $(800.00)    
                                    $(4,140.00)    total
        

So, more expensive than a lot of other hobbies; but in the same ballpark as a family trip flying somewhere for a week. My kids really enjoy it, and I'd much rather them spend weekend days with me on the water than in front of a TV/iPad. It's a priority for me to get them into the water pretty frequently (and I like watersports/swimming a lot), but I wasn't interested in a pool at my house, which probably costs more (up front and annually with depreciation) than a smaller, well-cared-for boat like mine.

Boarding/surfing/swimming is great exercise, and between that and loading/cleaning I get a great workout on boating days (that I enjoy instead of dread). I've often thought, if I could board/surf two ~half-days a week (one day after work, and then a weekend morning) I would stay in pretty decent shape without any other workouts.

 

 

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So what specific mechanical items should be on the checklist when inspecting and lake testing a used bow rider?

 

 

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Check the hull for repairs, gouges, scratches, etc.  Check the motor, make sure it runs smoothly, look for oil leaks.  Check the bilge area for any signs of residual oil / fluids.  Check motor trim pistons if it's inboard / outboard.  Check the impeller if possible, but I'd recommend replacing if it hasn't been replaced in the last 6 months.  Check engine belts, throttle engagement, steering / rudder.  Lots of things to really consider, and I know I'm missing a ton.

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28 minutes ago, Anastasis said:

So what specific mechanical items should be on the checklist when inspecting and lake testing a used bow rider?

If there is a forum for the brand of boat you're looking at, I'd get on there and see what you can find. In my experience, lots of stuff is brand-specific. E.g. did the manufacturer use any wood on the boats; where are the usual trouble spots and how to fix. Some general stuff:

Engine hours, check the oil level and color, note the engine make and model and research longevity/issues/winterization/maintenance proceedures online, Have the gauges been replaced (might not have set the engine hour meter to actual hours when replaced), does it go in and our of gear smoothly, (I don't know anything about I/O's so thats something else to look at), Do all the electrical items work, does it have dual batteries with a selector switch, any corrosion on the battery terminals, test bilge pump, does the bilge area look clean or greasy/grimy, do you smell mildew, Hull condition (blisters in the gel coat/deep scratches),  If it has a trailer does the trailer have bearing buddies and do they have grease in them.

 

 

Edited by 686

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Check out thehulltruth.com great boating message board. There should be good checklist on there. 

Depends on the cost of the boat you may want to have a boat surveyor look it over.

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When you test drive it, take some hard turns at speed. If there is a noticeable shake something isn't right.

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13 minutes ago, Yarbr said:

When you test drive it, take some hard turns at speed. If there is a noticeable shake something isn't right.

like this

tenor.gif?itemid=5875326

 

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Just now, pacman said:

What about boat club memberships as an alternative?

I think they are a viable option; you might have to plan out your usage and make reservations pretty far in advance, but its a way to potentially try boating and different types of boats before you commit to something.  If there was a viable option where I'm at I probably would have tried it.

 

In my mind, a lot of the ROI of boat ownership has to do with the degree of barriers to utilization of the boat. Some folks that have a bad experience set themselves up for a bad experience by living a long drive from a busy boat ramp, storing their boat in a sub-optimal manner, only going out on holiday weekends, yelling at their wife while trailering, etc., and not doing any preventative maintenance. Then they decide to sell the boat after not using it for a couple/several years,  and its a bad situation all around.

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I think they are a viable option; you might have to plan out your usage and make reservations pretty far in advance, but its a way to potentially try boating and different types of boats before you commit to something.  If there was a viable option where I'm at I probably would have tried it.

 

In my mind, a lot of the ROI of boat ownership has to do with the degree of barriers to utilization of the boat. Some folks that have a bad experience set themselves up for a bad experience by living a long drive from a busy boat ramp, storing their boat in a sub-optimal manner, only going out on holiday weekends, yelling at their wife while trailering, etc., and not doing any preventative maintenance. Then they decide to sell the boat after not using it for a couple/several years,  and its a bad situation all around.

 

There’s so much truth in these two paragraphs. We did the boat club thing years ago and I liked it enough but too much planning and not enough time on the lake. If I remember right it was about $400/month but I could be wrong. The set up really didn’t work for me bc there was so little spontaneity allowed and no sunset use. But for a more casual user it can be good.

 

I think buying a boat and the cost associated with it can be a big commitment but for me it’s totally worth it when I walk in the door from work on a summer weeknight and ask my boys if they want to go out on the boat. No trailer, no ice chest, no long ass drive, just the boat keys a few bottles of water and we head over to the marina. People look at me like I’m crazy when I say I live in lakeway but almost no effort boating 3-4 times a week during the summer makes it completely worth it. And there’s zero chance I’d keep a boat and all of the expense if I was an hour from it living in town.

 

I’ll do holiday weekends bc that’s what friends want but I prefer warm weeknights and Friday afternoons. Lake Travis is almost completely empty and you can do what you want.

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On 3/31/2018 at 10:52 PM, troph said:

Enjoying lake Travis this spring ... last few weeks on my colbalt. Axis should be on a trailer for Austin next week!!

 

Impromptu dinner by boat at rough hollow... Happy Easter ...

 

ce9fdf49345cde4580a505b0fd7787b7.jpg

 

We’re probably neighbors.  

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8 hours ago, 686 said:

This is a pretty good summary of my annual expenses for my 17 year old 21' wake boat; I haven't had any "major" expenses (replacing engine, etc):

insurance                     $(300.00)    
yearly locker rent     $(1,440.00)    
service/maint           $(1,000.00)    (low cost year = $250, and I do my own minor maintenance)
depreciation                $(500.00)    
registration                  $(100.00)    
gas/oil                          $(800.00)    
                                    $(4,140.00)    total
        

So, more expensive than a lot of other hobbies; but in the same ballpark as a family trip flying somewhere for a week. My kids really enjoy it, and I'd much rather them spend weekend days with me on the water than in front of a TV/iPad. It's a priority for me to get them into the water pretty frequently (and I like watersports/swimming a lot), but I wasn't interested in a pool at my house, which probably costs more (up front and annually with depreciation) than a smaller, well-cared-for boat like mine.

Boarding/surfing/swimming is great exercise, and between that and loading/cleaning I get a great workout on boating days (that I enjoy instead of dread). I've often thought, if I could board/surf two ~half-days a week (one day after work, and then a weekend morning) I would stay in pretty decent shape without any other workouts.

 

 

Who do you use for Insurance.  My boat is about 3 years older and, being a closed bow, a little less expensive.  But I have a pretty good agreed value policy for under $250 if I recall.  I've been using Voyager Marine Insurance for probably 10 years now.  Currently, ACE is the provider.  They had me with Progressive for a while, but I called and got them to switch to someone else. 

 

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Who do you use for Insurance.  My boat is about 3 years older and, being a closed bow, a little less expensive.  But I have a pretty good agreed value policy for under $250 if I recall.  I've been using Voyager Marine Insurance for probably 10 years now.  Currently, ACE is the provider.  They had me with Progressive for a while, but I called and got them to switch to someone else. 
 


I believe I have it bundled with my home and auto with Farmers, insured value of $25k. I should probably shop all of my insurance, but I like my agent and he was Johnny on the Spot when I had a bad hailstorm a few years back.

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