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Old 18-01-2019, 12:16   #76
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pirate Re: Advice for starting a delivery boat business

Profit..!!!!
Whats a bloke with a coupla stone slabs and grafiti got to do with boat deliveries.. ???
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Old 18-01-2019, 12:18   #77
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Re: Advice for starting a delivery boat business

Quote:
Originally Posted by Snore View Post
Yes but at well below the hourly market rate for a marine mechanic!

Once again, I see this as helping out my customers. I could easily say that the boat does not meet USCG requirements and walk away. Same for missing flares, etc. I use my WestMarine Pro account and buy them- passing my cost through to the customer.

I am one of those weirdos who is not looking to maximize my profits.
That sounds fair.
You get your daily rate and the customer gets the work done quickly and at a good price.

I think I will do the same.
One note I will not do any kind of engine work.
Don't want the owner to blame me if the engine has any problems.

Is there any kind of work you will not do?
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Old 18-01-2019, 13:40   #78
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Re: Advice for starting a delivery boat business

Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Graham View Post
That sounds fair.
You get your daily rate and the customer gets the work done quickly and at a good price.
Exactly, and that is why I have a decent reputation and my customers add a gratuity to my invoice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Graham View Post
Don't want the owner to blame me if the engine has any problems.
You apparently did not read my initial post. ANYTHING that happens on that boat is the Masterís responsibility and everyone who can will let you know.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Graham View Post
That sounds fair.


Is there any kind of work you will not do?
That is between me and my customers.


Correction, I will not run contraband
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Old 18-01-2019, 13:57   #79
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Re: Advice for starting a delivery boat business

Quote:
Originally Posted by Snore View Post
Yes but at well below the hourly market rate for a marine mechanic!

Once again, I see this as helping out my customers. I could easily say that the boat does not meet USCG requirements and walk away. Same for missing flares, etc. I use my WestMarine Pro account and buy them- passing my cost through to the customer.

I am one of those weirdos who is not looking to maximize my profits.
I believe the work is "altruistic."
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Old 21-01-2019, 12:06   #80
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Re: Advice for starting a delivery boat business

I will summarized that I have learned over the past 5 years talking with Delivery boat Captains, general life and from this thread.

1. Being a one person operation it is hard to have fulltime work as a Delivery Boat Captain or mate.
But it is a great business if you want to do it part time.
This is the same problem most one person contract business have.
I am a project engineer and I have seen many good engineers leave a large company and become a one person engineering consultant.
They normally fail because they did not realize how hard it is to get customers and spend more time selling, less time doing engineering and getting paid.
I have also seen many good engineers retire and have a very good part-time consulting engineering business.
I see delivering boats in the same way.
If you need a full time income make Delivering Boats just one part of your business.

2. You do not need to get your USCG Masters (Captain) License but it helps and some insurance companies will require it.
To get the USCG Masters License you will need to
a. Pass the 5 part USCG Test.
b. Have a medical and drug test.
c. Get a Transportation Workers Id Card that requires a background test.
Even if you are only looking to be a mate getting your License will help you get work.

3. Be prepared for the boat to be in poor condition when you arrive.
This is something that happen to me a lot in my engineering work.
I send out a detailed list of things what must be ready before I arrive have, a remote meeting to review the list but still some customers do not do the work before I arrive.
Not a problem, I see this as an opportunity for making more money.
Now much we charge is dependent on many factors and yes sometimes we do not charge the customer.
The same is true with when you arrive at a dock and find something wrong with the boat.
Just deal with it and make a few extra bucks or use it as a good will gesture for future business.

4. Gain the skills to do at least some simple boat repairs.
I think it would be wise to know how to repair the simple things on a boat if you intend to deliver them.
In my case, I have owned 5 sailboats, all in bad shape and spent the time and energy fixing them up.

5. Finding work.
All have said you need to develop relationships in the business to find work.
I have a 5 year plan of developing relationships in the NYC area by teaching the USCG Approved 100 Ton Masters Class.
This gives me the opportunity to get to know people in the business in the market I am targeting.

6. Be professional
It seem to me the marine industry is full of unreliable and unprofessional people.
People who will not show up, show up late or show up drunk.
By getting your USCG License and developing personal relationships with people in the industry, you can demonstrate that you are professional.
The 6 delivery boat Captains that I have met over the years all told me that this was the most important issue when hiring a mate to help them with a delivery.

7. Setting up a business.
I talked with my tax guy and he setup an LLC for me.

8. Should I get Insurance.
I am not sure if I should get insurance for the next 5 years when I will only be a mate.
As a mate I am under the Delivery Boat Captains insurance and also the boat owners insurance.
But as some have said that does not stop you from being sued.
I will get a dash cam and have if recording so it anything does happen I will have supporting evidence.

9. Equipment to bring for a delivery.
Just for safety I will bring with me a few items
a. Small plot charter with current charts as a backup.
b. Hand help VHF radio.
c. A good pair of binoculars.
d. My PFD that has a light, knife and whistle attached to it.
e. Maybe some tools
f. Sleeping bag, warm cloths and rain suit.

10. Know yourself.
Do you get seasick?
Do you panic when things go bad?
Do you get mad when people do not do what you ask them to do?
Do small things bother you?
Can you eat crap food for days?
Can you handle less then 8 hours sleep per day?
If you have answered yes to any of these questions, delivering boats may not be for you.
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Old 22-01-2019, 05:04   #81
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Re: Advice for starting a delivery boat business

Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Graham View Post
I will summarized that I have learned over the past 5 years talking with Delivery boat Captains, general life and from this thread.

1. Being a one person operation it is hard to have fulltime work as a Delivery Boat Captain or mate.
But it is a great business if you want to do it part time.
This is the same problem most one person contract business have.
I am a project engineer and I have seen many good engineers leave a large company and become a one person engineering consultant.
They normally fail because they did not realize how hard it is to get customers and spend more time selling, less time doing engineering and getting paid.
I have also seen many good engineers retire and have a very good part-time consulting engineering business.
I see delivering boats in the same way.
If you need a full time income make Delivering Boats just one part of your business.

2. You do not need to get your USCG Masters (Captain) License but it helps and some insurance companies will require it.
To get the USCG Masters License you will need to
a. Pass the 5 part USCG Test.
b. Have a medical and drug test.
c. Get a Transportation Workers Id Card that requires a background test.
Even if you are only looking to be a mate getting your License will help you get work.

3. Be prepared for the boat to be in poor condition when you arrive.
This is something that happen to me a lot in my engineering work.
I send out a detailed list of things what must be ready before I arrive have, a remote meeting to review the list but still some customers do not do the work before I arrive.
Not a problem, I see this as an opportunity for making more money.
Now much we charge is dependent on many factors and yes sometimes we do not charge the customer.
The same is true with when you arrive at a dock and find something wrong with the boat.
Just deal with it and make a few extra bucks or use it as a good will gesture for future business.

4. Gain the skills to do at least some simple boat repairs.
I think it would be wise to know how to repair the simple things on a boat if you intend to deliver them.
In my case, I have owned 5 sailboats, all in bad shape and spent the time and energy fixing them up.

5. Finding work.
All have said you need to develop relationships in the business to find work.
I have a 5 year plan of developing relationships in the NYC area by teaching the USCG Approved 100 Ton Masters Class.
This gives me the opportunity to get to know people in the business in the market I am targeting.

6. Be professional
It seem to me the marine industry is full of unreliable and unprofessional people.
People who will not show up, show up late or show up drunk.
By getting your USCG License and developing personal relationships with people in the industry, you can demonstrate that you are professional.
The 6 delivery boat Captains that I have met over the years all told me that this was the most important issue when hiring a mate to help them with a delivery.

7. Setting up a business.
I talked with my tax guy and he setup an LLC for me.

8. Should I get Insurance.
I am not sure if I should get insurance for the next 5 years when I will only be a mate.
As a mate I am under the Delivery Boat Captains insurance and also the boat owners insurance.
But as some have said that does not stop you from being sued.
I will get a dash cam and have if recording so it anything does happen I will have supporting evidence.

9. Equipment to bring for a delivery.
Just for safety I will bring with me a few items
a. Small plot charter with current charts as a backup.
b. Hand help VHF radio.
c. A good pair of binoculars.
d. My PFD that has a light, knife and whistle attached to it.
e. Maybe some tools
f. Sleeping bag, warm cloths and rain suit.

10. Know yourself.
Do you get seasick?
Do you panic when things go bad?
Do you get mad when people do not do what you ask them to do?
Do small things bother you?
Can you eat crap food for days?
Can you handle less then 8 hours sleep per day?
If you have answered yes to any of these questions, delivering boats may not be for you.
I've done a variety of things during my marine career, lots of commercial fishing, tugs, ships, ferries and a handful of deliveries, the deliveries were by far my least favorite, of course that's just me.
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Old 22-01-2019, 07:24   #82
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Re: Advice for starting a delivery boat business

Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Graham View Post




Can you eat crap food for days?

.


Hold it right there! My crews NEVER eat crappy food. Any delivery guy worth his salt can cook a decent meal. Good food=happy crew=efficient crew= easier passage

If crew or owner-assist are not good cooks, I cook- they clean.
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Old 22-01-2019, 08:06   #83
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Re: Advice for starting a delivery boat business

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Originally Posted by Snore View Post
Hold it right there! My crews NEVER eat crappy food. Any delivery guy worth his salt can cook a decent meal. Good food=happy crew=efficient crew= easier passage

If crew or owner-assist are not good cooks, I cook- they clean.
You mean you don't serve sardine sandwiches for 3 days straight?

I always expect the worst this way when the worst does not happen I am happy.
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Old 22-01-2019, 08:27   #84
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Re: Advice for starting a delivery boat business

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You mean you don't serve sardine sandwiches for 3 days straight?
I'd mutiny. No joke.
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Old 22-01-2019, 08:52   #85
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Quote:
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You mean you don't serve sardine sandwiches for 3 days straight?

I always expect the worst this way when the worst does not happen I am happy.
No.. Honey and Lemon Chicken, Spag Bol, Beef Bourgonion (stew to the uncultured), Curries.. nothing out of a can..
Although I must confess on my last owner assist the owner had some impressive canned curries he had bought in Tesco's, S'hampton..
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Old 22-01-2019, 08:52   #86
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Re: Advice for starting a delivery boat business

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fiveslide View Post
I'd mutiny. No joke.

When my son moved to LA a few years ago, as a joke I send him an emergency kit.
It had a flashlight, sterno stove, weather radio and a can of sardines.
I told him if I put something good to eat in the kit he would eat it before there was an emergency.
But I knew he would never eat the sardines unless it was the only thing left.
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Old 22-01-2019, 11:07   #87
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Re: Advice for starting a delivery boat business

The TWIC card is no longer required for the vast majority of commercial, including delivery operations, of small vessels. It is now only required for shore-side jobs at secured port facilities, (few and far between for recreational and small commercial vessels) and crew members of large commercial vessels operating under IMO regulations.

When I got my USCG master's ticket over ten years ago the TWIC was required or you MMC (formerly know as US Merchant Marine Officer license) was in valid. The USCG wised up and realized that all commercial operations requiring an licensed operators don't involve big ships and secured port facilities. The CG eliminated the "no exceptions to TWIC" requirement and saved me $135 for the background check on my first renewal.
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Old 23-01-2019, 11:53   #88
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Re: Advice for starting a delivery boat business

I did deliveries on for 12 years and would still consider doing another if it was interesting.

My approach was this. I dealt with high end yacht brokers who referred me their business. Their, now our, clientele had money and was willing to spend it appropriately.

I'd talk on the phone with the potential client and we'd go over rates and details. They were responsible for all costs including food, transportation to/from as needed etc. Also required was the fuel tanks be polished before I left and Vessel Assist or something equal was in place. (Mostly I did west coast of the U.S.

Insurance on the boat was required and they had to put a rider in place protecting myself and crew. As a Captain, insurance was not available. The rider cost them nothing and protected both of us.

Food. Simple. Go to a high end boutique type grocery store, give crew members a cart and tell them to go put whatever they wanted in it. Scallops at $25 per pound, yep. I didn't care and had already prepped the client about this. A well fed crew is a happy crew which makes the crappy deliveries go much better. We always had extra food on the destination end and that food went to the office workers at the brokerage we moved the boat to. You know those secretaries etc always loved it when Captain Mark came to town! And from a marketing point of view, those "little" people carry a lot of weight.

Before I set anything in motion I'd spend anywhere from 4-8 hours going through the yacht. I'd know where everything was and knew if I needed to bring basic tools along for emergency repairs. Then, I'd take the boat out and check systems. The brokers loved my attention to detail as most Captains would simply fill up the tank and go, hoping for the best.

Most Captains in my experience know little to nothing about engines. This is ridiculous IMHO. 1. Engine stops most of the time it's not a huge deal to get it running again. Bobbing around in the ocean is not pleasant under most circumstances and is a complete waste of time. When I moved to 100' + yachts as Captain the other Captains would tell me, that's why we have an engineer on board. Well, what happens if the engineer isn't on board, is incapacitated? My personal belief is the Captain needs to know how to do every job on the boat for just so many reasons. Not as well as specific types like engineer, chef etc but still enough to get the job done.

Lastly. No matter how good, careful you are, you are working in a dynamic environment and **** happens, boats get damaged. That's why you have documented proof of insurance and the rider protecting you and your crew.
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Old 24-01-2019, 05:36   #89
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Re: Advice for starting a delivery boat business

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I did deliveries on for 12 years and would still consider doing another if it was interesting.

My approach was this. I dealt with high end yacht brokers who referred me their business. Their, now our, clientele had money and was willing to spend it appropriately.

I'd talk on the phone with the potential client and we'd go over rates and details. They were responsible for all costs including food, transportation to/from as needed etc. Also required was the fuel tanks be polished before I left and Vessel Assist or something equal was in place.
Thank you for all of the advice.
I was thinking about now to check the fuel for contamination and fuel polishing seems like a good way to go.
I will still learn how to change fuel filters just in case.
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Old 24-01-2019, 07:25   #90
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Thank you for all of the advice.
I was thinking about now to check the fuel for contamination and fuel polishing seems like a good way to go.
I will still learn how to change fuel filters just in case.
Might be an idea to learn how to do an emergency fuel bypass to a spare 25L jug of clean fuel as well.
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