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Old 12-01-2011, 09:14   #1
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Toronto Boat Show Has Shrunk . . . a Lot

Mods, if this should be elsewhere please move.

I spent about 8 hours at the Toronto Boat show yesterday, going back down again today to work the Ontario Boat Builders Coop booth. I have some time to look around and it sure seems that the show has a lot less booths this year. I was hoping to get a lot of info on gear I need for my rebuild but it seems most of the outfits I was hoping to chat with aren't there this year.

Anyone else been down there this year? What was your impression?


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Old 17-01-2011, 11:15   #2
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Seemed just as jammed as last year, in terms of number of booths. I sure didn't see any vast empty spaces.

Perhaps not quite as many new production sailboats, but that appeared to be made more than made up by the ever-expanding section reserved for giant powerboats.

Did you check out Miss Supertest III? Some machine. I have a soft spot for those old racers; at our club (Toronto Hydroplane and Sailing Club) we have a huge amount of bling that has been handed down from the old hydroplane days. No hydroplanes, these days, but lots of trophies.

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Old 17-01-2011, 11:45   #3
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Yeh I had a look at her. I remember when I was a kid there was a racing hydroplane that was run out of Port Credit for testing. Thunder Chief? I don't really remember the name but I do recall that one had a Rolls Royce Merlin from a late model Spitfire in it, no transmission, just direct drive. They'd tow her out and she'd start up and putt along in idle til the engine warmed up then off she'd go.

I found the show to be full of a lot more stuff that had nothing to do with boats per say, all that crap like Sham Wow and Steam carpet cleaners, George Formans' Grill, Collapsing flag poles and other stuff. It seems most venues are now turning into flea markets. A buddy of mine commented on the same thing happening at the Motorcycle show. The Toronto Star had a booth selling all sorts of TV commercial junk as well.

The actual boat related stuff seemed to me to be down in number. For instance, No Volvo Penta sail boat engines, Nor Yanmar, or any other inboard engines for sail. Only one I found was the Nanni Diesel booth. As you said, Lots n lots of power toys. Big ones, small ones and anywhere in between. Lots of dinghies. All at the same price per foot pretty much where ever you looked. No competition really as per price. For the first time in my life, I ended up spending next to no money. I bought a West marine Boat hook for $ 10 because my old one is siezed up solid. Then I ended up buying a new stereo, which cost me $129 plus tax. The new ones have the slots in front for the SD cards and zip drives. I'm starting to convert all my CDs to digital format. So a new stereo is called for, my old one is a 10 year old AM/FM/CD with no front cover plate. But that's all I spent.

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Old 17-01-2011, 12:11   #4
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Well, I do like the shamwow. But I agree there wasn't a lot of price competition...the extendable boat hooks were 10 bucks everywhere, except at one of the booths where for some reason they were $15.

Did get one bargain ... a recycled-plastic mat for the foot of the companionway. $5 at the Binnacle Shop, versus $49 at Fogh Marine.
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Old 21-01-2011, 16:22   #5
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Yup, got a Sham Wow, couple of them, but at Christmas year ago.

I remember Miss Supertest from back "then" it was neat to see it again.

Can't say I remember Yanmar being there previous years. Sazilboat arfea has shrunk, only from that the dealers brought fewer boats to the show this year, although IP was not there this year.

I had a productive day, talked to several reps to figure out issues on several things, so was a good day for me. Besides, gets me through the hump of winter to spring.
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Old 21-01-2011, 16:54   #6
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It had maybe a dozen sailboats and yes, a lot of companies did not set up a booth. We were looking for two that were no shows. We don't think we'll go back next year.....Allan
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Old 23-01-2011, 00:01   #7
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No Eastern Marine (Volvos, mostly) and no Ontario Battery...no, it's not the show it was.

I bought some little shackles from Garhauer and joined the Boat Builder's Co-op...other than that, it was two four-hour walks with not much to show but a sheaf of catalogue that will adorn my bathroom's reading rack...

Although I did get the Stright-Mackay catalogue on CD-ROM and now I can read it in bed on my netbook...zzzz....zzzzz....
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Old 24-01-2011, 12:39   #8
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Glad to hear you joined the OBBC. I've been a member on and off since 77. The January meeting is at Port Credit Yacht club tomorrow nite at 1930. I'm going to try to get down there. It'll be the first one I've ever managed to get to.

I'm going to start a major overhaul this summer, so the OBBC will be well worth the yearly fee in terms of money saved. I'll be needing every thing from heaters to reefers, awnings to steering gear.



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Old 24-01-2011, 13:08   #9
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I'll need a lot of two-part paint and primer...going to Smithcraft for a $90 quart of Endura isn't my idea of fun, and I hope I can get in on the Ameron gravy train the OBBC drives.

I am going to try to make it out tommorow as well. If you are the guy who bought the cream-coloured Roberts 38 with the black sabre on the side that was at Outer Harbour for a while...well, I seriously took a hard look at buying that boat. I ended up with the one in this blog instead: The World Encompassed
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Old 25-01-2011, 21:26   #10
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Yeh, I'm the one who bought Sabre Dance. After I had her surveyed, I ended up with what I thought was a good deal but since then things have gone for a burton. The Surveyor was a first class idiot. The engine blew the rear main oil seal, and smokes some. The mainsail external furling decided about a month after I got the boat that it liked lying on the parking lot better than being battered about by winds and did so. Insurance covered that. But by the same token the forestay furling was the same make and model, and felt like the drum was full of gravel when you tried to turn it. So that got replace with a Harken Mk IV. The pulpit was a joke and we sawed it off. There are other things as well but hey, you saw her and walked away. Smart man. Me? I'm a masochist. I'll get this pig into shape or die trying. I always wanted an Offshore 38.

I'm curious about your engine contact being both the Nannie and the BetaMarine rep in town. Whats his name? I met with a fellow named Mark Bird about the Nanni. I wasn't aware there is a Beta rep in town, I've been dealing with a fellow in the US.

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Old 25-01-2011, 21:51   #11
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Yeh, I'm the one who bought Sabre Dance. After I had her surveyed, I ended up with what I thought was a good deal but since then things have gone for a burton. The Surveyor was a first class idiot. The engine blew the rear main oil seal, and smokes some. The mainsail external furling decided about a month after I got the boat that it liked lying on the parking lot better than being battered about by winds and did so. Insurance covered that. But by the same token the forestay furling was the same make and model, and felt like the drum was full of gravel when you tried to turn it. So that got replace with a Harken Mk IV. The pulpit was a joke and we sawed it off. There are other things as well but hey, you saw her and walked away. Smart man. Me? I'm a masochist. I'll get this pig into shape or die trying. I always wanted an Offshore 38.

I'm curious about your engine contact being both the Nannie and the BetaMarine rep in town. Whats his name? I met with a fellow named Mark Bird about the Nanni. I wasn't aware there is a Beta rep in town, I've been dealing with a fellow in the US.

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I was working on the club work boat and couldn't get to PCYC in time. Maybe next one.

Sorry to hear you've had trouble. The boat was sitting in place a long time by the look of it (I just peered at it from the dock and took a load of pictures). It looked like it had decent bones, so to speak, but I didn't fancy the rigging and just thought it looked rough.

A decent Toronto surveyor of steel is named Bill Provis. Dunno if he's retired, but you could check him out. Plastic boat guys can't survey steel properly, in my experience, although an engine is an engine. Only blasting full throttle into a nice head sea will reveal problems in some cases. Mostly around Toronto, you find that diesels age rapidly because they are switched on and off like lawnmowers and are indifferently winterized. Diesels want to be switched on, run up to 2,100 RPM and left there for six hours to get nice and hot...NOT run at 3,000 to make a 6:15 PM race start in ten minutes, switched off, tipped over for two hours and then run at 3,000 RPM to get to the dock and to the bar.

Sorry, pet peeve. Anyway, if the welds are strong and the hull is fair, she's worth patching up for passagemaking. You should talk also to Paul Peachey of Peachy Keen, another local steel boat. Or Matt Phillips of Creeation, a beautiful Goderich 40 at Port Credit Marina.

I've sent you a PM about Mark Bird.
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Old 26-01-2011, 21:18   #12
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Heh, I didn't make it either. Took an afternoon kip and didn't wake up til 2100.

As for SD, the hull looks good from what I've seen so far. All the welds are good, but I have to check and see if they welded both sides along the deck hull joint. I suspect they did based on what I can see of the transom to hull joint, but I need to make sure as they drilled scuppers into the toe rail but its 1/4 above the deck so water tents to pool. IF the welds are good both sides I'll be reshaping them. If not, I'll weld then reshape. As for the engine, I just suspect it was the oil seal drying out from 5 years of non use. I was looking to talk to Eastern marine again, to firm up info they gave me when I bought her in 2007 about the overhaul costs. Sadly they weren't there. Based on what they said in 2007, I'll pull the old dinosaur out and put in a Beta. Tad smaller, half the weight and better fuel consumption. Plus parts are not gold like volvo parts are.

Was down there this afternoon, cold n wet. Snow on the deck. Very depressing time of year for boat people.


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Old 27-01-2011, 08:06   #13
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Heh, I didn't make it either. Took an afternoon kip and didn't wake up til 2100.

As for SD, the hull looks good from what I've seen so far. All the welds are good, but I have to check and see if they welded both sides along the deck hull joint. I suspect they did based on what I can see of the transom to hull joint, but I need to make sure as they drilled scuppers into the toe rail but its 1/4 above the deck so water tents to pool. IF the welds are good both sides I'll be reshaping them. If not, I'll weld then reshape. As for the engine, I just suspect it was the oil seal drying out from 5 years of non use. I was looking to talk to Eastern marine again, to firm up info they gave me when I bought her in 2007 about the overhaul costs. Sadly they weren't there. Based on what they said in 2007, I'll pull the old dinosaur out and put in a Beta. Tad smaller, half the weight and better fuel consumption. Plus parts are not gold like volvo parts are.

Was down there this afternoon, cold n wet. Snow on the deck. Very depressing time of year for boat people.


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Yes, it is. Usually I show up just to replace the torn tarps.

Eastern weren't at the boat show. I hope Paul, the brains of the outfit, is OK...he's on the husky, drop-dead-suddenly side.

I would sell the old Volvo to a rebuilder for $500 and make 'em pull it out. As boat diesels in Lake Ontario are abused more than used, it would likely make a great stationary engine or genset conversion for a cottage. Also, much as I like the Volvo as an engine...I don't care to finance the retirements of Swedish unionized factory workers with ridiculously expensive spares.

I agree with the repower idea. A modern Tier 4 diesel is more efficient, less stinky and even the heavier, "torque-y-er" ones like the Beta line are usuallly 1/4 to 1/3 lighter than the Westerbekes and Farymans of old, which were usually marinized truck engines (my old Westerbeke W-52 was, for instance, the Mazda R2 block that power the 1980-1992 Mazda B2200 and Ford Ranger pickup line.) The Beta 60 I've bought should give me about 15% better fuel usage at the sweet "econo spot" of just below cruise speed of 4.9 to 5.1 knots at 1,900-2,000 RPM. I figure a range of 1,000 NM at that speed on 150 gallons in tanks. I can carry 30 or so gallons on deck easily without problem or even in the forepeak as I anticipate having trim weight to spare forward (the opposite of most boats).

Now is obviously a good time to do this, thanks to the Canadian dollar. I didn't have to touch my stash of American bucks to do this, as the exchange rates were so favourable. You'll probably want the Beta 50 or the 43...I don't know your displacement or your travel plans long-term, obviously, but either's going to be adequate if your boat is 24,000-28,000 lbs, as it looks. The Beta engines are quite similar to typical Volvos in that they are taller and skinnier than Westerbekes or Yanmars.

They are naturally aspirated, too. I do not prefer the mechanical complexity of turbo diesels, nor do I (or you) require the savings in poundage. Racers are a different story.

Lastly, a pretty girl in the information booth told me that the outfit running the Boat Show were strongly considering pulling it for 2011 and regrouping as they are having trouble selling booths and the door take isn't what it once was.

I found that credible, so maybe it's going to be renting a bus for Annapolis next year...if that. Frankly, I haven't darkened the door of a West Marine for years...I order stuff on line from Fisherman's Supply and Stright-Mackay and Mermaid Marine and other "semi-pro" places, like where the owners of workboats and fishing boats shop. If I ever have need of a hat that reads "Kiss Me, I Be th' Skipper, Ar", my opinion might moderate.
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Old 27-01-2011, 08:20   #14
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I was there this year and I started noticing the sailboat section shrinking about 2 years ago. Could be the economy, not sure. It didn't appear that there were less vendors but generally thought there was less people than normal. i picked a Rocna 20 anchor at the show for $525. The price was wrong on the piece of paper on the anchor stand. When I went to pay for it, it wrung up as $595. So I asked to speak to the manager and sure enough the price was marked incorrectly but they still let me have it for $525. Its no Annapolis show though that for sure. I don't think I'll be going next year.
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Old 27-01-2011, 12:15   #15
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Yes, it is. Usually I show up just to replace the torn tarps.

SNIP

I agree with the repower idea. A modern Tier 4 diesel is more efficient, less stinky and even the heavier, "torque-y-er" ones like the Beta line are usuallly 1/4 to 1/3 lighter than the Westerbekes and Farymans of old.

Snip

Now is obviously a good time to do this, thanks to the Canadian dollar. I didn't have to touch my stash of American bucks to do this, as the exchange rates were so favourable. You'll probably want the Beta 50 or the 43...I don't know your displacement or your travel plans long-term, obviously, but either's going to be adequate if your boat is 24,000-28,000 lbs, as it looks. The Beta engines are quite similar to typical Volvos in that they are taller and skinnier than Westerbekes or Yanmars.

Snip

Lastly, a pretty girl in the information booth told me that the outfit running the Boat Show were strongly considering pulling it for 2011 and regrouping as they are having trouble selling booths and the door take isn't what it once was.
Ah yes, replacing cheap plastic tarps. I did that for years, then finally decided to have a custom tarp made up. Real heavy duty monster, cost me $365. I put it on and came down over christmas and new years to find some SOB had slashed it wide open so they could climb up and steal the only thing I'd left aboard (flare pistol set) which I'd forgot when humping out the last load.

This year I finally broke down and had Triton make up a custom cover with frame that covers from the transom to just forward of the wavebreaker on the coach roof. I can now get into the boat, leave my wet snowy gear in the cockpit and go below to work. Not a bad price either. $1200 plus tax.

I'll be going with the Beta38. Stanley will put on on a plane to Toronto for $9125 US, all I have to do is pay taxes and brokerage fees. Fees I can save by clearing it myself. So with the exchange and what not, I should have the new one for about $10,250. I expect I'll be ordering it in a week or so. Just waiting on some news from my doctor.

As for the boat show not happening next year? It wouldn't surprise me. To be honest, at this stage of the game, I don't even look at boats anymore, its the stuff that goes in them or on them that counts and the internet is a great way for finding that stuff. OBBC helps a hell of a lot too.

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