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Friday, October 13, 2017

Boat shows and stripper clubs



The Annapolis Boat Show and stripper clubs have something in common. It might be fun to check out the goods, but you really don't want to get involved. The costs of doing so are too high. The boat show is going on now and I'm not going anywhere near it. Also not going to see strippers, but that's not the real point of this blog post.

I don't even enjoy looking at new boats in sailing magazines anymore. Even small sailboats are way out of my price range. In fact, I can't even afford most of the water toys some people bring on their boats. I'm letting my sailing magazine subscriptions run out.

Take any item, put the word “marine” in front of it, and the price shoots up. Smart boaters have learned that the last place you look for parts is the marine store. A good well stocked hardware store, at least ten miles inland, is a valuable resource. Things like fuel filters, belts, and engine thermostats can often be found at the auto parts store.

One of the last things you want to do is to pay someone to work on your boat. Being able to do fiberglass work will always save you a bundle. You don't need to have all the skills necessary but if you have some skills you'll have something to barter. A lot of boat work isn't hard, it's just tedious like sanding and painting.

If I'd first learned about sailing at boat shows, I'd never have gone sailing. Once you start looking around, you find all kinds of perfectly serviceable used boats in just about anybody's price range. If you fix one up yourself, you'll have a huge advantage over credit card captains who buy their way into sailing. Eventually, every boat needs work. If you have a simple boat, your problems will be simple ones. Often big new boats are stuck at marinas while their captains wait for parts or have warranty work done. They are stuck in port because of problems with systems that my boat does not even have.

Once in a while the only solution is to spend money at a marine store. Even there, a small simple boat can save you. Prices really climb the bigger your boat. A boat that uses generic, off the shelf parts is cheaper to repair than boats with proprietary systems. There are stores that specialize in used equipment, and that can save you big money.

Sure it might be nice to check out curvy, sexy, tarted up . . . boats. Look but don't touch.

In other news, my water line project advances. I dug down to the ninety degree elbow but did not remove it. Managed to pull a muscle while digging -all part of the joys of digging in tight places. Rather than remove the joint and take a chance dirt would get in there, I put the job off until later. My lovely wife had the phone with the bore scope app on it, so I couldn't scope it out yet. Besides, it was coffee time. Priorities.

-Sixbears

8 comments:

  1. would it be possible to reconfigure the pipes with no 90 degree elbow-just a gentle curve?

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    1. That's a good idea. Now that I've got the hose dug out, I see that might be possible.

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  2. If you do do fiberglass work, with your lungs, I hope you wear the proper face gear. And yes, coffee.

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  3. I am with Deb, a nice Poly line with a gentle sweep in it might be even better than two 45s....
    The amazing thing with boats is they loose their value quickly. Folks get tired of paying fees for the marina, hauling and maintenance. They pay big money when new but used ones can be had for very little. Dad had a nice Herreshoff Medowlark, in mint shape and sold it to the only taker for 1/3 its value. He then built a 21 foot Norwalk Island Sharpie. When he no longer could use it or care for it he sold it for 3K$. He had 6 times that much in materials cost plus four years labor in building it.

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    1. It's almost impossible to build a boat cheaper than you can purchase a good used one.

      Boats really drop in value when they get old enough that a bank won't loan money on them.


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  4. But I wonder if after storms in Texas, Florida and the Caribbean, because of the number of boats that got destroyed, there is now a shortage of used boats and a couple year window where the cost of used goes up. Kinda like after the cash for clunkers stupidity, we saw the used car prices in our market bump up for a time until enough used cars came back up to the level it used to be.

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    1. Most of the boats will be salvaged and end up on the market. Many will be damaged, but most will be fixable. A lot of sailors will give up on the sport, so those boats will hit the market too. Nothing like a couple of hurricanes to scare people away from the water.

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