I have been sailing for about a 3 years and owned a boat for a little over a year and have only dealt with a couple of yards and people working on my boat.
I had an experience in the last fall as a cruising sailor where I felt I got overcharged. Tried to resolve the issue. No Joy
So I got my boat towed to another yard and didn't deal with the original yard again.
I had a push rod bent in my engine
due to a plugged exhost hose and getting raw water
backed up into the engine
. I have worked with diesel
engines all my life on tractors. I completely removed all but the motor
mounts and had the yard remove the engine because I was 3000 miles from home and had nothing to lift
the engine out. They said I would not be charged dockage and my boat was there for just over a week when they got time to pull the engine. I was living on the boat and had noting to do on the boat and I didn't want to be in the way so I spent some time away, but I returned every couple hours. I only saw them working on the boat once. There were three people charging
$70/hr. working on it the one time about 3pm when I came by. They quit work at 4:30 each day. They removed the engine and then bolted the engine to a pallet and shipped it off to be rebuilt.
When I got the bill they had the three guys working on the boat for 8 hours each and the total bill came to $1700. I knew they were padding the hours for sure. When I confronted them telling them I had come by at least 5 times during the day their response was to say these people were not on the boat but preparing to remove the engine. I know they were full of crap and I told them so. I had a friend with a boat and we towed my boat over to another yard.
The other yard set the engine in for me a couple of months later after it was rebuilt with two guys, it cost me $250 and $200/month for dockage while I was home and they had a labor rate of $90/hr. I did the work to install the engine and got it running and aligned. This other yard was good at giving me advice
no charge and sold
me some parts
I needed at a reasonable rate they were great.
So to get my engine lifted out cost $1700 and to get it set back in $250 (+$400 dockage).
I eventually payed the $1700 bill because I didn't know what else to do. I did find out later that this yard has a rep for overcharging.
In my normal life I have dealt with the same mechanics for my airplane, pickups, cars and tractors for the last 30 years or more. I know they are good and I have a good relationship with them. We some times have issues but resolve them no problem, in an air of mutual respect.
So can anybody tell me what I should have done. I know as I cruise
from place to place I will always have to deal with people I haven't a long relationship with. I know I'm spoiled by the people that I usually work with.
I agree with an earlier post that most people are good and honest.