WesleyDax

Looking at a 20' ??

4 posts in this topic

Good morning, In a few days I will be looking at a 78 20' center console boat, I have no clue what Im doing.  I have looked and read all over the internet and like anything else theres a lot of bs to wade through.  I have narrowed my search to this 20' with a 150 merc. The boat is supposed to have had a new transom, throttle/shifter cables, bottom paint and water pump among other service related items done in the spring of this year. Other than dirty and the wood needing refinished/replaced it looks ok. The trailer is sketchy at best.  What are some other things I need to look at?  I have fished and owned boats for years but being in east TN its always been bass boats and mostly aluminum. I currently have a 2013 tracker 18' with the 60 4stroke, but when it comes to saltwater boats I know nothing.  We will be spending our saltwater time in bays from apalachacola to pensacola probably 4-5 times a year.  I have no intrest to run several miles out in the gulf. Will the boat need work? are there things like a top we want to add?  yes..  but it will be a project that me my dad and my son will be working on together and thats not something you put a price on.  I have heard about the foam becoming water logged. Is there a way to check for this.  I will be able to drive the boat when we look at it. The asking price is xxxx.  I think thats a little on the high side but really not sure.  I feel like im rambling.  Any information yall can give would be greatly appreciated 

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Having been in the marine industry for over 20 years, several things in your post throw up a flag for me. Your decision should be determined by asking yourself, do you want a project boat, or do you want to go fishing? Reading your post gives the impression that you are probably already 75% decided on going ahead with the purchase and are just looking for someone to tell you all will be fine, but I'll throw out some opinions anyway. If you do not know what you are looking at, you need some professional help. A couple of hundred dollars spent on a survey by a competent surveyor, even on a 20' boat of that age is money well spent. If he discovers fiberglass delamination or a rotten transom, you are already money ahead. "Supposed to have had" is a relevant term, and is also a flag since you don't know who did the work or if it was even done. A lot of expensive problems can be covered up with paint and gelcoat. The motor needs to be checked out and a compression test done by an independent shop. Electronics regardless of age are doing to be disposable in a couple of years so don't let them influence the selling price one way or the other. If the trailer is iffy, that's also a major expense item.

I would get the NADA book and go though it item by item and see what the boat is really worth. The prices are listed according to condition. You don't want to pay for someone's sentimental value regardless of age.

Speaking of age, you're looking at a 30 year old boat, so proceed accordingly keeping in mind that a boat that old is going to have issues and anything that you have to hire out is going to be at least a $1000 bill. I have customers who have literally spent tens of thousands of dollars on "cheap" boats.

I wish you well with this venture. Unless the price is so low you just can't pass it up, I would keep looking, but that's just me reflecting on some of the things I've seen go through boat yards and mechanics shops.

 

BOAT= Break Out Another Thousand

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Thanks for the input. I’ve still not made a decision. I did take the boat out yeasterday and it ran well. Ugly but would fish now.  Solid floor and transom.   But uuuuugly.  I offered 2500. A project boat for sure.  Soap and water would go a long way 

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