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Old 19-05-2011, 14:36   #1
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Boat Number and Documentation

I bought a boat. I am the third owner. I registered and titled the boat in Michigan where I live. When doing work on the boat I discovered a NO number stenciled in the Bilge and in one of the bumper lockers.

I am assuming this is a documentation number???

What do i do now if I want to document the boat?

To my knowledge the last owner did not do the documentation, so it had to be the first. I have no idea who that was. The last owner owned the boat for 8 years.
Also I have been told not to document the boat, as it isn't necessary. I do plan on sailing outside of the US sometime in the future.
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Old 19-05-2011, 15:05   #2
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Re: ??? Documented boat

The number is probably a mfr. number. It would be wise to document the boat if you're going offshore so you don't have to try to explain where your state is to someone in Tonga! USCG doc. is recognized everywhere. You have to submit all the sales documents, showing the progression of ownership. It's a PIA if the original dealer or someone down the line is out of business or has lost the paperwork. The folks who I bought my boat from did the documentation research and said it was quite a job. If you let it lapse, or want to rename the boat it has to be submitted all over again!
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Old 19-05-2011, 18:39   #3
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Re: Boat Number and Documentation

I suspect the number is the documentation number. Try plugging it in Office of Science and Technology and see what you get. It should be quite straightforward to have documentation reissued. Fill out the forms and call NVDC in Falling Waters WV if you can't figure something out; they will help you.
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Old 19-05-2011, 18:50   #4
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Re: Boat Number and Documentation

If your vessel was documented, the documentation number will be prominently displayed or there will be a large scar on the surface where it was removed



Documenting the boat with the USCG is usually straightforward but likely to take several months for the agency to process the application.
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Old 19-05-2011, 20:20   #5
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Re: Boat Number and Documentation

If it is a 6-8 digit number, it's probably the Doc number.
Hull numbers are usually 12 digits

Go here Office of Science and Technology and type in yout number and see if you get a hit
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Old 19-05-2011, 20:37   #6
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Re: ??? Documented boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by smurphny View Post
...It would be wise to document the boat if you're going offshore so you don't have to try to explain where your state is to someone in Tonga!
It's absolutely unnecessary. Nobody cares. Many boats overseas have state registrations.

Quote:
...You have to submit all the sales documents, showing the progression of ownership. It's a PIA
Not really. If the title is incomplete, and they have no reason to suspect foul play, you simply sign an affidavit that you are responsible for the title.
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Old 19-05-2011, 22:19   #7
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Re: ??? Documented boat

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Originally Posted by daddle View Post
It's absolutely unnecessary. Nobody cares. Many boats overseas have state registrations.
Roger that! Us included.

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Old 22-05-2011, 06:06   #8
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Re: Boat Number and Documentation

Yep it was documented by a previous owner. It was originally named QUASIMOTOR -
strange name for a sailboat?? It says Data found in historical database no longer in Documentation.
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Old 22-05-2011, 08:18   #9
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Re: Boat Number and Documentation

Which means that all you have to do is show chain of ownership from last documentation and you can re-document.
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Old 22-05-2011, 13:24   #10
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Re: ??? Documented boat

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It's absolutely unnecessary. Nobody cares. Many boats overseas have state registrations.



Not really. If the title is incomplete, and they have no reason to suspect foul play, you simply sign an affidavit that you are responsible for the title.
Isn't it impossible to obtain cruising permits in some countries without US documentation? This has always been a primary reason to do it. When a boat is documented it is officially recognized as from the US, not a state. As far as just submitting an affadavit stating you own the boat; this was not the experience of the folks I bought my boat from. They had to obtain and file all the original sales receipts in order document the boat. Maybe things have become more lax since then (20 yrs ago). Should be no problem with this boat since it has been documented already. I understand documentation is also required for some kinds of financing.
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Old 22-05-2011, 13:49   #11
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Re: Boat Number and Documentation

* Documentation may be required for financing.

* As boats under 10m/33ft cannot be documented, do you suppose such boats have never cruised internationally, obtained cruising permits, or checked in? Of course not.

* When I bought my documented boat the PO and broker had completely screwed up the documentation (as well as their sales tax liability, boat systems, permits....their mistake, my gain). These losers were unable to properly sign and notarize the transfer. The CG office rejected the title transfer documents. I had to sign something saying I guaranteed the title was proper. This may cause some problem later with somebody's financing because the chain of ownership is not completely notarized, but it got me the Certificate of Documentation I needed for cruising.
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Old 22-05-2011, 13:57   #12
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Re: Boat Number and Documentation

You can obtain a mortgage with a documented vessel. It is also supposed to give you some protection overseas from having your vessel arbitrarily seized by another government. At least you will have an indisputable identification number for the the proof of ownership.
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Old 22-05-2011, 15:02   #13
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Re: Boat Number and Documentation

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As boats under 10m/33ft cannot be documented, do you suppose such boats have never cruised internationally, obtained cruising permits, or checked in? Of course not.
Ten meters? Most boats 25-feet or more in length have sufficient volume to meet the USCG boat documentation requirements.
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Old 22-05-2011, 16:24   #14
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Re: Boat Number and Documentation

Quote:
Originally Posted by daddle View Post
* As boats under 10m/33ft cannot be documented,
Totally wrong and inaccurate. Boats under 5GT cannot be documented; it has nothing at all to do with length...

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Old 22-05-2011, 16:26   #15
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Re: Boat Number and Documentation

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Originally Posted by jtallen2489 View Post
Also I have been told not to document the boat, as it isn't necessary. I do plan on sailing outside of the US sometime in the future.
You have been "told" correctly. Unless you are sailing to some really obscure places, documentation is not required.
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