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Old 02-11-2015, 13:24   #1
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Is this boat worth bying

Hi there
As much as I am satisfying myself with my virtual boating, I have been yearning to get into the real world boating. For a while now I have been eying this boat which was for sale a while back until they parked it in the back yard out of sight. At the time, the roof canopy was intact. But I have noticed that for the past few years, the canopy has been ripped off by the wind, and the boat was not covered up. This summer I finally decide to satisfy my curiosity and go have a look at it. The inside has been seriously damaged by the rain and snow, so this would need to be almost completely redone. I also learned that the 115 HP mercury motor would need a cylinder overhaul. From the serial number, the motor is a 1985. As for the boat, I found out it is a StarCraft Marine Chieftain. Not sure which model exactly, but its 21'-6" long.
I am asking for your opinion as to if this boat is worth buying at $1,500.00. I have also made some research and I would need to put in maybe up to $3,000.00 to get the motor rebuilt, and I am guessing almost as much on material to rebuild the interior.
My plan would be to work at this for the next 4 to 5 years.

I would appreciate any comments you might have
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Old 02-11-2015, 13:31   #2
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

if it is a wood boat, offer 750 usd
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Old 02-11-2015, 13:38   #3
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

IMHO: Not likely worth $1500 - Not likely worth $500.

1979 Starcraft Chieftain 25 ft @ $1585 CDN (<$1250 USD)
1979 Starcraft Chieftain 25 ft | powerboats, motorboats | Barrie | Kijiji

Aluminum outboardBoat: 1973 Starcraft Marine Chieftain 21

However
$4795 USD (>$6100 CDN) ➥ Starcraft Chieftain V Marine Aluminum 21 Foot Cruiser
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Old 02-11-2015, 13:41   #4
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

If it's wood, unless you absolutely love woodworking and have all the tools and the time... they should probably pay you to take it.


If it's fiberglass...


And if you really like it...


And if the trailer is included (and if the trailer has usable tires and lights and brakes)...


And if you love working on stuff like that...


Might be worth a little. Assuming you recycle the existing motor and hang something new on it.


I wouldn't pay $1500 for it, but then I don't have those skills/tools, nor time...


Instead, I'd be looking for a boat I could use tomorrow.


YMMV...


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Old 02-11-2015, 13:45   #5
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

I would bye it but not buy it. It is worth negative $1500, even after you work on it for five years. Look for a more classic (ie not butt ugly etc) Great Lakes fishing boat if you want a long term project.

That appears to be one of those ancient riveted aluminum Starcrafts that leak like a sieve and are hard to repair.
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Old 02-11-2015, 14:03   #6
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

Those old lapstrake hull boats have classic appeal. But if out of the water a long time and it is wood, it may leak a lot.
If glass... it's classic looking and might make a cool project.
Beware: Outboard engines are very expensive new. Bigger ones used are a turkey shoot.
Also: boats are worth more if the owner has a title and trailer title. Depends on your location, but can take years to get a new title if lost sometimes
It's a cool looking boat.
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Old 02-11-2015, 14:29   #7
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

RUN AWAY ! Dot take it if they give it to you for free 1
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Old 02-11-2015, 14:35   #8
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

Starcraft are aluminum aren't they?

I seem to recall being out in a friend's decrepit Starcraft on Elliott bay between Seattle and West Seattle when the wind and seas kicked up to a pretty rough state. Next thing you know, rivets started popping out one by one. By the time we got to the marina, I was bailing pretty much full time.

I'm not overly fond of old Starcraft boats...
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Old 02-11-2015, 17:44   #9
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

Not worth it.

Keep shopping.

That one is ready for the scrap yard.
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Old 02-11-2015, 20:51   #10
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

Pass, even if they offer it for free.
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Old 03-11-2015, 09:18   #11
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

In Oregon and coastal Washington you can find similar vessels in nearly every blackberry patch. Judge an old cruiser like this by its running gear, motor, tranny, prop etc and soft goods i.e. Upholstery, carpet and seat cushions. Next look over the trailer very carefully. Is it galvanized, are there bearing buddies, is the hitch functional? Has it been stored inside or out?

If you can tow it to the nearest launch ramp and go for a cruise without stopping to buy a thousand dollars worth of USCG required gear then yes, buy it and have fun. If you are looking for a project buy an appreciating asset not a boat.
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Old 03-11-2015, 09:37   #12
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

Plan on tires for the trailer and more. I think you are low on the engine rebuild estimate. I believe it is aluminum look carefully for corrosion. That said I would say pass it. Put the money in your piggy bank for the next few years and get something that will be worth something. JMHO
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Old 03-11-2015, 10:45   #13
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

Thank you for all your replies.
To confirm some of the responses, it is an aluminum built.


GordMay, I have checked your links. The one for the Chieftain 25 in Orilia, I would stay away from. First there is not much information as to what shape it's in or the condition of the engine. Next, if this is actually a Chieftain, unless I am mistaken there should be a cabin and with windshield similar to the one in my picture but a little longer. So if I am correct, the cabin has been ripped off. This is not what I am looking for at all. Your second link I have went there already. The third one, price is US. I live up in northern Ontario. It is also older that the one I am looking at (I think)


As for riveted aluminum boat construction, my dad had one from 1960 to 1987 (when he sold it with the camp we had). I have never seen any problems with it. Of course we did not have the rough large open waters like the great lakes. All we had was the rough waters of the French River.


The trailer has ownership papers, but I am not sure about the boat. This is something I would make sure of before the deal is finalized.


The trailer is probably worth more that the boat. It is as you can see a tandem axle, heavy steel construction and it has a 6000# capacity, with a hydraulic tongue actuated brake system. Its called and "EZLoader" Since the boat probably weighs only about 2000#(according to GordMay's second link), the trailer is more than what that boat needs. I do relies that even thou the tire treads looks good, the side walls are starting to crack and would need replacement. And since it has been sitting outside for the past 6 to 10 years, the breaks would probably need to be worked on.


In summary, the aluminum boat construction dose not worry me too much as rivets can be changed. I am also not the guy that would go out in stormy rough weather unless I had no choice, and in such case I would not beat the s--t out of it by ramming full speed into waves just to get home quicker. I would prefer to go anchor close to shore and let the storm pass. The motor I would get a complete rebuilt done on it which might indeed be more that $3000, but it is still cheaper that the $12,000 plus for a new one.


The real deciding factor in buying of not buying is whether or not I am ready to spend the next 5 years stripping the "rotting" carpet covered wood in the rear section, and rebuilding it from the floor up. Inside the cabin might be salvageable, unless I want to change the layout.
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Old 03-11-2015, 10:56   #14
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

Give it neck.
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Old 03-11-2015, 10:56   #15
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Re: Is this boat worth bying

free would be expensive for that boat. but if you wanted to spend the $500 to get rid of the bug and keep you busy then it maybe well worth it.
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