Brett Becker

10 Things to Ask Your Boat Dealer Before You Buy 

Does your dealership participate in any events with customers -- raft-ups, poker runs, or picnics? Events like that show a long-term commitment. Photo courtesy of boatinglakemead.com.

Buying any boat, new or used, is enough of a commitment to justify some really careful planning, including solid ideas of where you'll keep the boat, … [Read more...]

Boat Repairs: When to DIY and When to Pay a Pro

Boating is about being on the water, not spending more time working on it. Find what service and repairs you are comfortable doing, and farm the rest out to a professional. Photo by Brett Becker.

If you’re a handy boat owner, you probably do a lot of your own maintenance and repairs. However, there are jobs that are best left to the professionals. … [Read more...]

Used Boat Sales Tactics: Social Proof

mcdonalds-social-proof-350

In the past few months I've written about a number of techniques that professional salespeople might use in your dealings with them when it comes to buying … [Read more...]

Boat Transport: Shipping by Truck

This powerboat is shink-wrapped, strapped down on the trailer, and ready to roll to a new home in the sunnier south. Photo credit: Dave Pugsley

There was a time when I never would have bought anything I had to drive more than five hours to go and get, but the Internet has changed all that. I once … [Read more...]

The Boat Trader App: Who Knew?

BT app 1

This is a story of the good things you can find right in your own back yard more than a shameless promotion of a site I write for. Honest. I was noodling … [Read more...]

Used Boat Detective Work: Diagnostic Tools

The Rinda TechMate diagnostic tool is pricy, but scans a lot of engine functions.

If you look at a lot of used boats or like to do you your own maintenance, it’s best to have a good selection of tools on hand. (I've mentioned compression … [Read more...]

Used Boat Sales Tactics: Rejection, Retreat, Revision

A seller's revised offer may be an improvement over the first, but it doesn't mean it has reached a level where it's to your advantage.

You will face a number of sales tactics when buying a used boat from a dealer or even when buying from a shrewd private owner. I've already mentioned some … [Read more...]

Upgrading Used-Boat Gauges

New gauges or even gauge faces can freshen up a used boat’s tired looking dash. Refinishing the dash panel and adding color-accented bezels takes it up a level.

One of my favorite ways of refurbishing an older used boat is to reface the gauges and replace the dash panel. It usually requires a couple afternoons … [Read more...]

Is it Time for Electric-Over-Hydraulic Brakes?

Electric over hydraulic brakes are great for heavy-duty applications, such as towing a big offshore V-bottom. For smaller applications, surge brakes seem to work just fine. 

Depending on the technology, I tend to vacillate between early adopter and abject Luddite. I bought a vehicle with fuel injection as soon as I could afford … [Read more...]

Propeller Tuning? Really?

Having a stainless steel propeller “tuned” can produce real performance and efficiency gains.

If you’re looking at buying a used boat with a stainless propeller, but you’re a little concerned that it’s dinged up and needs to be replaced, be … [Read more...]


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