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Old 29-04-2016, 08:41   #31
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Re: Boatyard RANT

My absolute favorite yard has a great sign/policy I think says everything I can imagine about this situation...

Labor rate - $100/hr
If you want to watch - $200/hr
If you want to help - $400/hr

If you don't trust a yard enough to let them do their jobs when you aren't there then you need to find another yard.
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Old 29-04-2016, 09:14   #32
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Re: Boatyard RANT

I work mainly in South Florida. Land of some of the best marine mechanics and service people in the world...and Pirates. If you bring your own on-line and Ebay bought parts and shop for the cheapest guy in town to install them chances are good that you are going to run into a lot of Pirates.
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Old 29-04-2016, 09:16   #33
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Smile Re: Boatyard RANT

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stumble View Post
My absolute favorite yard has a great sign/policy I think says everything I can imagine about this situation...

Labor rate - $100/hr
If you want to watch - $200/hr
If you want to help - $400/hr
Me teaching you how to do it all yourself by cell phone -$600/hr

If you don't trust a yard enough to let them do their jobs when you aren't there then you need to find another yard.

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Old 29-04-2016, 09:38   #34
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Re: Boatyard RANT

It is interesting that the yard didn't just say "We can't guarantee when that is going to happen, so if you are here when we do it then you can watch but if you are not we cannot slow down the yard or accommodate your request to watch." I'm not sure I have heard of any yard ever doing that, but it seems totally reasonable to me and like it would put the customer on notice that their request has consequences.

Are yards just scared that if they tell customers they can't work to the customer's schedule, other than "Boat is ready for what I contracted you to do" or "Boat is not ready for what I contracted you to do", they will lose enough business to make a difference? I am pretty sure most auto mechanics would have no such problem if you said you had to be there when they put your car on the rack.
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Old 29-04-2016, 11:03   #35
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Re: Boatyard RANT

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Originally Posted by LakeSuperior View Post
I worked in a yard where the well heeled customers were fawned over and the average slob with a sailboat got the hind teat. It's just the way it is.
For me it did not even take hauling out at such a yard, just talking to them on the phone trying to give my business to them. But of course a call from an owner of a 30 year old boat is not the same as a call from a guy with a 5 year old Hinckley.

Oh, well. I gave my business to a working man's yard. Sure they look scruffy and the area is not what you would call spotless. But on the plus side they have a junk yard on the premises, very comprehensive one, which saves me each year 100s of $$ as opposed to buying some new Chinese made crap at WM.

Oh, and the best part are the the guys working there. To watch them maneuver a boat in on the jacks with a few inches on each side to spare is pure joy. Also during winter they will fix that flapping cover or patch a hole in it or secure a string or two, all without bragging about it. Or call you to say this or that may need some shoring up. Do they make mistakes? Sure they do, like damaging my folding salon table during mast stepping. But they immediately offered at my choice to either fix it or take off a month's worth of storage, which ended up as two months worth which more than compensated me for my time fixing it.

They don't get those Hinckleys or Swans, it's mostly average slobs like me with older boats in various stages of condition. But the place has a real "old time" feel, when boats were just boats and not some fancy items of conspicuous consumption.
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Old 29-04-2016, 14:59   #36
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Re: Boatyard RANT

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stumble View Post
My absolute favorite yard has a great sign/policy I think says everything I can imagine about this situation...

Labor rate - $100/hr
If you want to watch - $200/hr
If you want to help - $400/hr
My other favorite sign:

You can have it done well
You can have it done fast
You can have it done cheaply

You can have only two of the three choices
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Old 29-04-2016, 20:18   #37
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Re: Boatyard RANT

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Originally Posted by Maine Sail View Post

You left your speed log installed for a haul out..... Oops... Even with the slings in the right spot they can still slide over a speed log, during placement, and ruin it. This is why you want to pull the speed log it before haul out.

Do you have "SLING" stickers?
No opps... the B&G thru hull has a forward vane the aft end has a V groove to guide the impeller unit in place and it deflect weeds etc. Of course the unit was removed. They broke the thru hull not the impeller housing.

No I don't have sling stickers.., I provided the drawing with appropriate cautions.

One yard nearly undid the forestay which is need to keep the stick up because of the swept back spreaders..I arrived in the nick of time and told them to turn the boat or the travel life around and release the back stay which does not support the mast.. it provide bend and is the SSB antenna.

When some is give written graphic instructions and verbal notice/cautions.. they are expected to follow them... like installation manuals...

This blunder was 100% their fault.
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Old 29-04-2016, 20:35   #38
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Re: Boatyard RANT

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Originally Posted by fstbttms View Post
Yes, and as usual, we only got to hear one side of the story.
The sailboat guy who is very nice... all the guys are... apparently took leave the day after he didn't step my mast. I am told he had chest pains. He's too young for that. The manager worked the crane this morning.

The stepping from start to their finish took 1/2hr The had 3 guys helping.. One held a line up at the crane / dock level.... one held on at the mast base more or less and the other sorted out the shrouds (4) and the head stay. The three of them out the clevis pins in the turn buckles. I asked the to only hand tighten no cotter pins... as I would do that and tun the mast.

They still managed to put the wrong clevis pins in2 of the shrouds... I had to re do the because the unused on was too large diameter for the gooseneck... which I found out when I tried to connect the mast.

You're talking amateurs here. They didn't even bother to set the clevis pins facing the same direction!

Frank the mechanic told me was I was leaving that they were having a bad day and so they didn't want to mess anything else up.. THAT is effin unreal.'The Owner who sits in his office all day when he's there.... had the audacity to tell me that they didn't step the mast because there were no lights.... he meant bulbs perhaps... BOTH meanings were rubbish. I called and left a voice mail on Friday that the mast was ready for Monday AM.

Not only do they make blunders but apparently they can't admit mistakes and fabricate BS stories/excuses. Mind you this is the two top guys... the Owner and the Yard Manager.

This evening before I left after I had tuned the rig etc... I went to put that Airmar 850 speedo in that they installed last year which needs the valve assembly to work. Not there. But they lied about that too.

I've sent them the drawing from the installation manual... and told them they need to short haul the boat so this can be assessed.... which is was I wanted to do when they hauled and painted and relaunched it in a NY minute before I could get a look. THEY DON'T listen.

I DO NOT SUPPLY PARTS.... I do my own installs.

They are losing customers by droves... and have mostly big power boat cruisers.... not even sport fishers... just floating condos... and a few smaller runabout fishing boats

I am not unhappy to leave. It's not a good yard... too expensive, very few sailboats... they don't have a rigger... But they have a pool!
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Old 29-04-2016, 20:40   #39
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Re: Boatyard RANT

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Originally Posted by vjm View Post
It is interesting that the yard didn't just say "We can't guarantee when that is going to happen, so if you are here when we do it then you can watch but if you are not we cannot slow down the yard or accommodate your request to watch." I'm not sure I have heard of any yard ever doing that, but it seems totally reasonable to me and like it would put the customer on notice that their request has consequences.

Are yards just scared that if they tell customers they can't work to the customer's schedule, other than "Boat is ready for what I contracted you to do" or "Boat is not ready for what I contracted you to do", they will lose enough business to make a difference? I am pretty sure most auto mechanics would have no such problem if you said you had to be there when they put your car on the rack.

They weren't working to MY schedule. I have been out there every day almost for 2 weeks running. I was available on THEIR schedule... but they they seem to have NO schedule. They had guys fiddling around with the docks one was actually told to sweep the yard by the travel lift. The mechanics were doing outdrives... a few boats were launched... They didn't look all that busy to me.

I have to be there because yards screw up... it's that simple. They even did it stepping the mast this am. But I was told I had to not be on the boat or close by.
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Old 29-04-2016, 20:56   #40
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Re: Boatyard RANT

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Originally Posted by vjm View Post
Think about it this way: your mast was not ready to be lifted and you had demanded to be present but were not there when the work day began. It's reasonable for any yard at that point to assign projects and get equipment dedicated to other projects. They can't wait around for you. Your mast lifting has now gone to the bottom of the list. If the necessary people and equipment are free later, and you finally show, and the mast is actually ready, then they will do it.

If you are going to demand to be there, make sure everything is ready the day before, and show up fifteen minutes before the work day starts. Now you are a priority. They can get your mast up quickly, get you out of their hair, and get on with the million other jobs everyone wants done immediately. And never underestimate the power of donuts and coffee.
+1

If you are going to be a pita customer, be there on time. No one cares how picking up your light bulb quickly barely added to you being late.
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Old 29-04-2016, 21:51   #41
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Re: Boatyard RANT

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stumble View Post

If you don't trust a yard enough to let them do their jobs when you aren't there then you need to find another yard.
I removed some of the quote, but the last line is exactly where the rubber meets the road. You need to trust the folks working on your boat or find another place. It sounds like the OP will find another place which is the best thing for all involved
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Old 29-04-2016, 23:37   #42
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Re: Boatyard RANT

I've always done my own work, in the past I've tried to have work done by local contractors but found I ended up having to repair their work 50% of the time, and I'm not talking about cheap fly by nighters, I tried to do business with local businesses but found them lacking. It seems that many marine contractors are "independents", so independent that some times they show up and sometimes they don't, sometimes they do the job right, sometimes they don't. I don't mind paying good money for good work, but it doesn't always work that way. I have been through several boat yards over the years and found that price and appearance had little to do with the quality of service and pride in their work. I've been at the same boatyard now for ten years, it's a bit scruffy, the yard guys don't wear matching uniforms, in fact they don't wear uniforms at all, but it's a family owned yard and they do what they say they're going to do. If they say their going to step the mast on Tuesday on the high tide, they step the mast on Tuesday on the high tide. Because they work with a small crew they might not be able to move your boat on a days notice, but given enough of a heads up and a little consideration they get it done when they say they will. It's as much as I can expect from any boatyard, and much better than I've gotten at much pricier yards. They actually feel better if I'm there when they step my mast, they cant be experts on every boat ever built and appreciate my help when doing it, I don't expect them to be. I pitch in, shoulder the work and help them get it done and out of the box so they can move on to the next boat, my eye for detail and knowledge of my boat helps them get it done quickly and safely, it's a win win for all. Of course it requires cooperation on my part as well as theres. Good karma goes a long way. I appreciate their attitude and low key way of managing a stressful seasonal rush. If your yard isn't doing it for you, go somewhere else, this yard has reached the point that they can't take more boats next season, word spreads fast. Vote with your dollars, it's the only thing some managers get.
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Old 29-04-2016, 23:57   #43
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Re: Boatyard RANT

Quote:
Originally Posted by vjm View Post
It is interesting that the yard didn't just say "We can't guarantee when that is going to happen, so if you are here when we do it then you can watch but if you are not we cannot slow down the yard or accommodate your request to watch." I'm not sure I have heard of any yard ever doing that, but it seems totally reasonable to me and like it would put the customer on notice that their request has consequences.

Are yards just scared that if they tell customers they can't work to the customer's schedule, other than "Boat is ready for what I contracted you to do" or "Boat is not ready for what I contracted you to do", they will lose enough business to make a difference? I am pretty sure most auto mechanics would have no such problem if you said you had to be there when they put your car on the rack.
Some yards just don't give a crap, they have the yard, it's pretty sure there won't be new yards coming in since shorefront property is in short supply and building a yard is out of the question price wise, so they feel they've got you. I had my boat at a yard at one time, with a very nice, brand new paint job on the hull and watched the yard manager hoist my boat with harnesses covered with seashells from the parking lot he just dragged them across, when I complained to the owner about the nice deep gouges he just put in my hull the owner told me if I didn't like it I could go somewhere else, so I did, that same day, then filed an insurance claim to fix it. I took pictures of the whole thing, because when I told the yard manager to clean harnesses off he pretty much told me to f*&^ off, so I took plenty of pictures, which went a long way in getting the insurance claim taken care of. I don't really understand that attitude of some yards, a happy customer doesn't mind paying for good service, an unhappy customer will go elsewhere, it's a business not a hobby. Fortunately, for every crappy yard there are two good ones and the economics these days are forcing the badly run ones out. It still pays to work cooperatively with whatever yard your in, it's a tough business and has many variables, it's a hard one to manage.
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Old 30-04-2016, 05:44   #44
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Re: Boatyard RANT

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Originally Posted by jb cruzan View Post
+1

If you are going to be a pita customer, be there on time. No one cares how picking up your light bulb quickly barely added to you being late.

I wasn't late... There was no schedule... when I spoke with the yard manager on the phone at 10:31 am telling him I would be there is 45 minutes (I did arrive at 11:15) he did not tell me that I was late and that the schedule was to lift it a 10:30.

My mast was ready to be stepped on Sunday night...with or without a new LED bub. I told them the old incandescent one was fine.

Why do you make excuses for a yard which makes mistakes, ignores customers written and verbal instructions?

My boat is my HOME. When a plumber comes to work on my leaky sink I am not told to leave and not be there. In fact a schedule is worked out to accommodate both parties. I don't allow or expect anyone to enter my apartment.. even the property own when I am not present. If there is some emergency perhaps... fire or flood.

Yards have dropped boats in travel lifts... they have dropped masts. Three years ago the GIYC dropped a mast and pretty much totaled a 42' Trintilla. The insurance company sold it for a song. That was at a yard with ONLY sailboats and the manager lives aboard, races and is a yacht owner. Sh*t happens. And too often. I don't want to be a victim of incompetence.

And of course when the did finally step the mast it took 3 men 1/2 hr and the still didn't put the correct clevis pins in the turnbuckles! I HAD TO FIX IT.

What's wrong with reviewing work with an informed boat owner? I have owned and maintained the boat for 31 years. I know it and the systems as well if not better than anyone including former dealer.

I have also had a woodwork business, employees and schedules... worked on and in people homes and businesses. The fact is that to many board yards act as if they can make ALL their own rules about how to conduct business. And sadly they get away with it because there is little competition and high demand.
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Old 30-04-2016, 05:58   #45
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Re: Boatyard RANT

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Originally Posted by lifeofreilly57 View Post
I've always done my own work, in the past I've tried to have work done by local contractors but found I ended up having to repair their work 50% of the time, and I'm not talking about cheap fly by nighters, I tried to do business with local businesses but found them lacking. It seems that many marine contractors are "independents", so independent that some times they show up and sometimes they don't, sometimes they do the job right, sometimes they don't. I don't mind paying good money for good work, but it doesn't always work that way. I have been through several boat yards over the years and found that price and appearance had little to do with the quality of service and pride in their work. I've been at the same boatyard now for ten years, it's a bit scruffy, the yard guys don't wear matching uniforms, in fact they don't wear uniforms at all, but it's a family owned yard and they do what they say they're going to do. If they say their going to step the mast on Tuesday on the high tide, they step the mast on Tuesday on the high tide. Because they work with a small crew they might not be able to move your boat on a days notice, but given enough of a heads up and a little consideration they get it done when they say they will. It's as much as I can expect from any boatyard, and much better than I've gotten at much pricier yards. They actually feel better if I'm there when they step my mast, they cant be experts on every boat ever built and appreciate my help when doing it, I don't expect them to be. I pitch in, shoulder the work and help them get it done and out of the box so they can move on to the next boat, my eye for detail and knowledge of my boat helps them get it done quickly and safely, it's a win win for all. Of course it requires cooperation on my part as well as theres. Good karma goes a long way. I appreciate their attitude and low key way of managing a stressful seasonal rush. If your yard isn't doing it for you, go somewhere else, this yard has reached the point that they can't take more boats next season, word spreads fast. Vote with your dollars, it's the only thing some managers get.

This is PRECISELY correct on all points Bravo!

I had some work done at Old Lyme... pricey.. small family owned yard... no problem with the owner there... I would use them if they were closer and not up the river behind a railroad bridge. We were on board and I watched them work... careful.. considerate... respectful... clean... no uniforms... and quite knowledgeable mechanics and rigger. They don't have "juniors" doing work at the direction of a manager.

Boat work does not take a lot of work. How many does it take to change oil? or put in a dripless shaft? or mount a windlass? Or install some bit of electronics? or service a refer? ONE PERSON. One KNOWLEDGEABLE. person.

When you have 200+ boats you cannot provide the sort of individual attention a board should... without an expensive army of qualified mechanics. They use and control their subcontractors... don't let the owners even use their own subcontractors! They are pirates!

There is only 1 yard that does service work in Northport. They stink. I am not going to do business with them. I am off to find another one to:

Haul and block my boat and not do anything else. And when I need lift and restep the mast.

I don't mind paying for work... I just want it done properly.
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