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Old 21-03-2016, 06:47   #1
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Cons Of Buying Used; For A Newbie

I am getting back into boating; part of the preparation for retirement, i.e. I have the time to tinker with a boat. It has been over 25 years since I had a boat on a lake, simple bow rider.

This time I am looking at a 26' to 32' cruiser. The price of a new is far more than a used. I heard that so long as you don't get anything older and 2005, resin in older engines, you should be ok. Pass a survey and have maintenance records is another must.

How long should one expect an engine to last if it is well maintained. I have seen suggestions of 1500 hours. Is it really that high in reality ?
I have seen some 10 year old boats for sale with under 200 hrs. Why would it be that low ?

Would appreciate insights into the cons of buying a used.

Thanks
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Old 21-03-2016, 07:11   #2
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, mikeling.
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Old 21-03-2016, 07:36   #3
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

What kind of boat, what kind of engine?

I'd say build quality more than age is important, then upkeep, but then I have an old hopefully better built boat, so of course that is what I would say.

Since you come from smaller boats, would you rather have a 5 yr old Bayliner with a Force engine that spent the last three years sitting under a pecan tree uncovered, or a 20 yr old well maintained SeaRay with a Yamaha outboard?


But need to know what type of boat your looking for. 1500 hours may be close to timed out on a high performance outboard I don't know, but a well maintained Diesel is just broken in good, or trashed if it was not maintained.


My Sailboat had 500 hours on it's engine in 27 yrs when I bought her, she came from way up North, Bath Maine and I believe when she was in the water she mostly sat, then an older couple in Hilton Head owned her and mostly did light sailing, as the Staysail had more wear than the Genoa, I assume due to age the self tending Staysail was a whole lot easier to handle, they fitted a In Boom furling system I'm sure to make that easier to handle too.
Then a Gentleman in Daytona bought her and she was too much boat for him, hired a Captain to take him out whenever he went out, so again very light use.

Many, Many people buy a dream when they buy a boat, they dream of all the things they are going to do, but those things take time, often time they don't have, so the boat sits. It's eventually sold when they come to realize what it has been costing them and how little use they get from it.
It seems often the let it go for a few years before they finally sell, and that's the boat you want to avoid if possible, the one that hasn't been maintained in years.
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Old 21-03-2016, 07:40   #4
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

Coins?

There's probably a bazillion 'cons' to buying a specific'boat. Age is relative. Design and construction methods are key. Your own tastes will dictate style; ice: newer vs older looking and amenities.

A cruiser the size you're looking into should be relatively easy to self-survey. Bigger, with more and complicated systems become more difficult. Best case? You find a type you like aesthetically and all it's systems are renewed or upgraded recently AND t. price point is within reach. Yep! They're out there; just needs patience

Worst case? You dump place of cash on a "dog".. Then find it will cost a bundlto repair/replace systems and structure. Oooops! IF, repeat, IF you are a DIY and have the skills and determination, you *may* find that most, if not all of the problems are do-able. Do the research and take a best guess what IT would cost to refit (multiply by the usual 3x !) and deduct that from the price.

Balance scenario 1 and second option.Figure which is in your best interest, then go with the. "Plan"
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Old 21-03-2016, 07:41   #5
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

"don't get anything older and 2005, resin in older engines,"

Clarify, please?
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Old 21-03-2016, 08:12   #6
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

I'll keep going if you don't mind. When I was younger, I bought everything new, often financed. I don't know when actually, I think it was when I was airplane shopping I came to the realization that a lot of used items out there were well less than half the cost of new, yet were in very good condition.
My wife is a Sports car fan, I bought her the third Miata that came to Texas years ago. (first two were sold to people in California), and later sold that car before we went to Germany and was never forgiven for it.
Years later, probably 2010 or so I bought her a used Miata very similar to the one she used to have, last year of the pop up headlights was 97, so I bought her the best 97 I could find.
Little car is still in excellent mechanical condition, paint beginning to show age of course, I had to put a new top on it and timing belt, but now my 17 yr old Daughter drives it, and it's almost 20 yrs old, when I was younger I would have never considered a 20 yr old car that wasn't a restored classic could be anything but junk, but that is not always true.

If your goal is cruising and unless you have significant funds, you can save years worth of cruising by buying a used well kept, already equipped cruising boat, and age isn't nearly as relevant as I thought it would be either.
My boat is approaching 30, and she is in my opinion in better shape, and better built to survive bad times than many new boats, for a fraction of the cost.
Now I'm a year from leaving and when we go I will have spent almost as much as I paid for her, on her and a couple years of the majority of my free time, but it was the way I could Retire early and be able to cruise until we didn't want to anymore or couldn't, and still be able to afford to move back on land (knock wood)
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Old 21-03-2016, 08:56   #7
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

"coins" indeed !

Damm'd auto-speller! Can't go back and edit after 30 minutes;I'll add here.

AFA engine hours.. Figure out what regular car engines go through in, say, 100,000 miles. 1500 @ 45 mph is only 67.5K miles.. Barely "little old lady" usee. Only 200 hrs means that someone took a dock queen out ten times a season for two hours. I'd worry more about under-use than over

Ditto what A64 sez
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Old 21-03-2016, 09:07   #8
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

There is no hard or fast or easy or right answer to this question which gets posed about every few weeks or so here on CF. It depends...and it depends and it depends...Why is the OP so concerned about engine hours--or anything about the engine? It's a sailboat for gosh sakes!--the rig and sails are the real engine and replacing them can cost even more than major repairs on a small diesel might (or even replacement perhaps) but there are so many other reasons why being overly concerned about the engine is misguided. This is not a trawler! How big can the auxiliary be on a 26-32' boat? Maybe 25 hp at most? There is a reason why we call it the auxiliary--but I'd pay more attention to wiring, hull, decks, portlights, hatches, rig, sails ect than the engine. If it starts up cold, gets up to speed, warms up quickly, does not smoke or shake and the oil appears ok, you are probably ok. And engine hours is only an indication of use and not much of one either...
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Old 21-03-2016, 09:08   #9
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

My personal experience for what it's worth. I recently retired from boating after 40 years, enjoyed those years but the later years my wife lost interest, I found it lonely and increasingly difficult working on it, there are not many older people around the marina working on their boats as you might think, and when I decided to sell it took me five years, you can easily end up being the last owner unless you give it away.

My advise would be to buy a cheap older boat that you can tinker with if you just want a hobby, but buy a nearly new boat if you want to do some serious boating. Power boats get boring real fast and with a sail boat you can always motor. Definitely get a diesel and stay away from gas as you will not be able to maintain it yourself.
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Old 21-03-2016, 09:10   #10
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Annapolis View Post
It's a sailboat for gosh sakes!--the rig and sails are the real engine
You are aware you're reading a question posted in the Powered Boats forum, right?
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Old 21-03-2016, 09:13   #11
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

One of the funny things about our Prius is it shows average speed as well as average MPG.
As you can imagine since it's not our only car, yet is driven over 35,000 miles a year, most of those are highway miles, but the average speed is always in the low 30's. Takes a lot of 70 MPH running to offset that time you sit at a red light not moving.
If it was a car whose engine was always running, then it would have over 5,000 hours on it.
I'd bet an average automobile that hits 250,000 would have almost 10,000 hours on the engine, automobiles like cabs, much more.
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Old 21-03-2016, 09:24   #12
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

I will also say the answers to your questions depends.

Engine age and hours. Hours and life left depends on whether you're talking gas, diesel, inboard, I/O or outboard. Age issues, mainly parts availability would depend on the model. Some older boat engines are classics, used in all sorts of cars, heavy equipment, etc and parts are readily available. One example is the Perkins 4-108 diesel.

I would be at least as concerned about the condition of the hull and deck. Make sure all the structure is good, no rot or delamination, bulkheads good, etc.
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Old 21-03-2016, 09:30   #13
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

At one time I had a C&C where the engine was only used to go out of the harbour twice a week 5 months of the year for 5 years.
!5 hours a year! Also a cruise up river for summer school vacation and sail back, 10 hours and another 5 hours sailing about the islands.

150 engine hours in 5 years, lots of day sailing, 2 month cruise and lots of racing.
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Old 21-03-2016, 09:44   #14
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

No hard and fast rule on engines. A good engine should go 7000-10000 hours. A light weight modern engine maybe not.
Under use can be as bad as high hours. An under used engine never warms up completely, so gunk builds up in the engine, and the wear on parts is high because it takes a while for oil to reach all areas.
Personally I wouldn't expect more than 2500 hours out of a Yanmar. Nor less than 5000 out of a Perkins. But the devil is always in the details.
Once a boat is over say 7-8 years old, it's all about the boat. After that things can be bad , whether it's 30 YO or 7 YO. Pumps, hoses, tanks, rudders, rigging, sails etc can go bad after that time. etc
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Old 21-03-2016, 09:45   #15
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Re: cons of buying used; for a newbie

Quote:
Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
One of the funny things about our Prius is it shows average speed as well as average MPG.
As you can imagine since it's not our only car, yet is driven over 35,000 miles a year, most of those are highway miles, but the average speed is always in the low 30's. Takes a lot of 70 MPH running to offset that time you sit at a red light not moving.
If it was a car whose engine was always running, then it would have over 5,000 hours on it.
I'd bet an average automobile that hits 250,000 would have almost 10,000 hours on the engine, automobiles like cabs, much more.
I wonder... does it average in the time at stop lights? or exclude it?
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