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Old 07-13-2017, 09:03 PM   #1
bigdog
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Default New Boat Purchase, questions

Would like feedback from Forum about potential used boat purchase.

Here is what's known:
Owner age: over 60, says he's picky about his boat, Maint, Cosmetics, etc
Boat age: 2002
Gelcoat: Very Good
Engine: Mercruiser 4.3L, 190hp, Carb
Engine hours: Guestimated at 600 ?
Second owner
Boat always in fresh water
Bellows never changed by current owner, who has owned for 10 yrs
Owner said 'Gimbal' was changed a few years back.
Upholstery good.
Outdrive issues: Unknown
Owner says engine runs perfect (why would he say different ?)
What about this engine hours? What should I be concerned about?

Will be bringing a boat mechanic to survey engine.
Have I missed anything ?

Thank for your feedback in advance !
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:09 PM   #2
Grove84
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Default Don't forget the outdrive

You will want to determine when the outdrive was last serviced. With those hours the bellows , gimbal ring and the shift cable can be very worn. Outdrive maintenance can run 600 for just regular service a drive rebuild 3-4k. If he has the trailer be sure to check the tire Pressure and trailer lights before hauling it,
And when we're the bearings serviced on the trailer ?
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Old 07-14-2017, 06:49 AM   #3
Dave R
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It is a 15 year old stern drive boat. Do not expect it to be problem free. Despite perfect care any boat that old will have had a chance for corrosion to set in, rubber bits to dry out, drive parts to wear out, and wood rot to start. Most important thing to check, IMO, is the condition of the wood in the structure of the boat. It probably had wood stringers, transom core, bulkheads, and if the sole is carpeted, a wood deck. Make sure those are all solid.

It will have a Gen 2 Alpha drive. Those are solid and reliable, and they can be replaced (with an aftermarket or used drive) for little money compared to any other drive. Check for steering slop by moving the aft end of the drive back and forth while someone holds the wheel. Less than an inch is acceptable on a boat that old. A worn gimbal ring is a common issue that causes steering slop with those and it is expensive to fix. 600 hours is nothing to worry about on a 4.3, those are a very robust and proven engine design with roots dating back to the mid 50s (it's a small block Chevy 350/5.7 with 2 cylinders removed).

In another post, you stated you are looking at a 22 foot boat, if memory serves. If this is the same boat, I'd be concerned about it being under-powered. That's a lot of boat for a 4.3 to move. I think it would be better powered with a 5.0 or a 5.7. If you intend to use it with few people on board, it will probably be OK. Put 6 people on it and it will struggle to get on plane (if propped "normally").
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Old 07-14-2017, 07:30 AM   #4
meredith weekender
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What brand and model boat are you looking at????

Is the outdrive a Volvo penta / Bravo 3 / etc ???
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Old 07-14-2017, 08:34 AM   #5
Doobs41378
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My boat is a 2004 22 footer and it still runs great. Mercruiser as well.
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Old 07-14-2017, 10:03 AM   #6
Biggd
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigdog View Post
Would like feedback from Forum about potential used boat purchase.

Here is what's known:
Owner age: over 60, says he's picky about his boat, Maint, Cosmetics, etc
Boat age: 2002
Gelcoat: Very Good
Engine: Mercruiser 4.3L, 190hp, Carb
Engine hours: Guestimated at 600 ?
Second owner
Boat always in fresh water
Bellows never changed by current owner, who has owned for 10 yrs
Owner said 'Gimbal' was changed a few years back.
Upholstery good.
Outdrive issues: Unknown
Owner says engine runs perfect (why would he say different ?)
What about this engine hours? What should I be concerned about?

Will be bringing a boat mechanic to survey engine.
Have I missed anything ?

Thank for your feedback in advance !
I have a 19ft 2005 Larson Senza bowrider I've been thinking about selling if your interested. 4.3 Mercruiser also. It's in the water on lake Waukewan and can be test driven. I bought a Jet Ski this past winter and we hardly ever use the boat anymore. If I sell the boat I'm going to buy another Jet Ski. It has no hour clock so I can only judge by what the previous owner told me and he was very honest and in his 60's. I've owned it for 3 years so it should have about 250 hours on it by now
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Old 07-14-2017, 03:25 PM   #7
Descant
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I agree with Dave R about the wood decking, frames, etc. I bought a used engine from a "low hour" boat. Engine was fine, but the boat had been scrapped because of rotten flooring. It had "rubberized" canvas i.e. no-breathing, so the heat and humidity did a job on all the wood.
I once had a survey done on my own boat in anticipation of sale. The surveyor was able to measure moisture content in the gelcoat/fiberglass. It was high. The recommendation was to let it dry over the winter and paint the bottom in late spring.

Overall, I'd look closely at the hull, wood, etc and not just rely on "the gelcoat looks good".
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Old 07-14-2017, 04:39 PM   #8
TiltonBB
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A mechanic with a laptop can plug into the engine module and get the actual hours on many boats manufactured at least as far back as 2002.

I had a 2002 boat with the Volvo Penta motor and it did not have an hour meter but my mechanic kept me up to date about the hours.
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Old 07-15-2017, 10:04 AM   #9
BroadHopper
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Default Wood Rot

Is my main concern. I know of someone who bought a used 2004 Horizon 22 BR. The boat looks immaculate. Very low hours and moored on the lake for 10 years. Shortly after he bought it, he found the floors were made of wood and had to be replaced. Expensive!

Also beware of salt water use. Salt water corrode fast!

I wouldn't worry too much about the gelcoat. A 3 step detailing with a 5" buffer will have the boat looking like new!
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Old 07-15-2017, 03:15 PM   #10
Old Sarge
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Default Get a survery!

If you have doubts, get the boat professionally surveyed! Cheap enough (couple hundred depending on the size) and worth it to avoid headaches down the road or Bay as it were!
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