Tips for Boat Buyers

Buy a Boat, Buying a Buy

Catamaran Powerboats: Offshore Fishing in a Small Package

glacier bay

Driving a launch around a harbor with over 1,200 moorings gets you acquainted with many kinds of boats. I’ve come to know several avid recreational fishermen … [Read more...]

Engine Outdrives: Inspect Those Bellows

An exploded view of a Mercruiser Bravo 2 sterndrive assembly, showing the bellows aft.

A friend of mine — and I swear it wasn’t me, honest — bought a nifty little used runabout not too long ago, and got a pretty good deal on it. Or … [Read more...]

How I Escaped from Limbo: the Boat, that is

Pearson 30

Today I escaped from Limbo! Limbo the sailboat, not the other bad place—both seemed equally one step short of hell. My project boat, formerly called … [Read more...]

Boat Trailers: Maintain Your Bearings

Kendall SHP is a high-temperature wheel-bearing grease with good resistance to salt water.

When I worked in an auto parts store, every so often a guy who had just bought a used boat would bring in a shop towel filled with pieces of exploded trailer … [Read more...]

How to Remove a Painted Boat Name: Try Easy-Off

For painted-on names, some people use Easy-Off over cleaner as a removal remedy.

True story: A guy brings home a used boat he just bought, and he is just beaming. His wife comes out, says nothing at first, then points to the boat and … [Read more...]

Buying a Boat with a Partner

boat-partners

Partnering with someone else to buy a boat may be a good option for people with common interests. The partnering advantage comes from shared activities … [Read more...]

Marine Engine Oil: Avoiding Viscosity Breakdown

Oil in a marine engine, such as this 4.3-liter GM V6, must be changed at regular intervals to avoid viscosity breakdown, fuel dilution, and moisture contamination.

Complete service records for a used boat you are considering purchasing are a good way to judge how well it has been cared for. Changing oil at the proper … [Read more...]

Salt-Neutralizing for Marine Engines: Royal Flush

Volvo-Penta's QL Neutra-Salt Engine-Flushing System

Even before you buy your first boat, you know it’s essential to flush your engines after running in salt water. But even if you flush your engines religiously, … [Read more...]

Boat Canvas: Increased Value and Comfort

flybridge enclosures

Buying a used boat has one big advantage over buying a new one: all that expensive equipment a new owner purchases to outfit his boat comes standard on … [Read more...]

Compression and Leak Down Testing: Squeeze Play

If you're mechanically inclined, you can use your own compression-testing kit, or you can hire a marine mechanic to go through the process.

If you're looking at a used boat with an older engine, or an engine that you think might not have been well-maintained, it makes sense to run a couple … [Read more...]


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