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Old 04-16-2013, 01:08 PM   #1
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Have you bought a used boat in the past 2-5 years?

i had to get my exhaust manifold worked on and decided while the system was drained, it'd be a prime time to change all the hoses in the ER. So far I have found 5 hose clamps that either the band or worm gear had rusted through!! I know for a fact that none were suspect when I purchased my boat as I climbed in-under-around -and through everywhere with a flashlight and mirror specifically checking for stuff below the waterline or on primary hoses before my maiden trip bringing the boat home across the Gulf of Mexico. I changed all the zinc'd steel or galvanized clamps I found with SS. Apparently the P.O. used chrome or some kind of plated clamps in addition to the afore mentioned home grade stuff while "fixing" the boat for sale. Geez, just leave the obviously needed to replace items there, so I could use the right stuff!!

Anyway if you fall into the couple of years passed used boat owner you may want to grab a flashlight,mirror, and some aspirin/muscle relaxers and include checking these in your spring readying. They truly cost next to nothing and require no more than a screwdriver to maintain-yet they can easily cost you your boat or even your life.

Look everywhere

Entire raw water system Main and Genset
Exhaust hose clamps Main and Genset
Keel cooler
Bilge pumps
shower sump
washdown pump
livewell
Air Conditioning cooling pump
sink drains
rudder and prop shaft stuffing boxes
holding tank hoses esp those used for overboard discharge
ALL thru hulls

Its a little mind blowing when you think of the potential problem points!
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Old 04-16-2013, 02:47 PM   #2
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That's a good checklist for everyone on a periodic (or ongoing) basis, not just newcomers to boat ownership. Those are all good items (if your boat has them) to keep an eye on on a regular basis no matter how long one has owned a boat.
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Old 04-16-2013, 03:07 PM   #3
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Yes it is a good idea for all. It was just directed at newer owners as I've owned boats all my life commercial/pleasure and I've at the least completely refurb'd if not actually built from the hull up-yet due to a back injury shortly after buying this boat I've been somewhat lax compared to my past diligence (kinda like one who is completely new to boats would likely be).

By the way if you are new-use Stainless. ALL stainless-not just the band. Yes they cost more but if quality stainless you'll likely not have to change them in your boating lifetime-but you better check them anyway!!!
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Old 04-16-2013, 03:32 PM   #4
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AWAB clamps have been our go to for as long as we've owned boats (pretty much since I was 17). Expensive, yes, but worth it. I've never had to replace one of them. Cheap insurance if you ask me. In our experience, the supposed "stainless" hardware store/big box/auto parts store clamps will eventually rust. Check them with a magnet sometime. I think we had a thread on this not that long ago.
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Old 04-16-2013, 04:17 PM   #5
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Yes, using the better or best clamps is a good idea. Just as important is to find the sources of drips, leaks and mist that are getting onto the fittings in the first place.
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Old 04-16-2013, 04:21 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by twiisted71 View Post

Its a little mind blowing when you think of the potential problem points!
Your checklist of systems components to monitor is a good one. Thanks. However, your last sentence could be summed up as a welcome to the "wonderful world of pleasure boating"!
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Old 04-16-2013, 04:25 PM   #7
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My boat has the driest bilge of any I've ever owned. You don't have to have "leaks" on an older boat (don't know about newer ones) to have a corrosive environment. My boat has huge vents along either side of the hull for the engine to entrain air through-salty, humid, and sometimes misty air.
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Old 04-16-2013, 04:27 PM   #8
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Your checklist of systems components to monitor is a good one. Thanks. However, your last sentence could be summed up as a welcome to the "wonderful world of pleasure boating"!
LOL. And that's just for the lowly hose clamp!


FYI One of the sources I get hose clamps from oddly is salvage places. I'd much rather plunk money down on an older significantly heavier built and obviously good SS used clamp than the thinner, sharp edged chintzy stuff some places try to pass off as quality marine grade hardware.
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Old 04-16-2013, 05:17 PM   #9
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My boat has huge vents along either side of the hull for the engine to entrain air through-salty, humid, and sometimes misty air.
Yup, those unrestricted side vents will do it alright. Many vent boxes can be rebuilt to minimize salt water mist - if you have the space and access. In some eases those vents will do in an engine prematurely too especially if the air intake.is outboard near the side vent intake.
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Old 04-16-2013, 05:33 PM   #10
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I've been curious since buying this boat as to why they didn't place the ER intakes inside the cockpit under the gunnel decks. If I can figure a clean way to block the OEM vents I may experiment with this. A 4" duct on each each side should be more than adequate (instead of aqueduct!). Perhaps this wasn't done incase someone re-powered with a gasser and needed to install an ER blower?
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Old 04-16-2013, 07:13 PM   #11
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Grand Banks used gunwale-mounted air intakes from the first woodies through the fiberglass boats up into the later 70s. Then they moved them to inside the gunwale for a very short period of time and then to the main cabin sides where they have been in various shapes and configurations ever since.

However I have not noticed any detrimental effects from our exterior-gunwale mounted, rear-facing louvers in terms of spray or salt intake.
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Old 04-16-2013, 07:51 PM   #12
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Awab clamps and engine rm. vents

When I went with my installing Cummins dealer (Marine Propulsion Inc.)to the Cummins marinization plant in north Charleston SC to pick up my new engine I was fortunate to get a tour and to meet some of the engineers.

They were pretty insistent that I provide 170 sq. inches of air flow path to the engine room for my single 6bt5.9 210 hp.

So I told the Admiral she was going to lose about half of her hanging locker, and maybe she should carry fewer clothes anyway.

I installed new Vetus vents in the main cabin side (took 2 of there largest size) above the deck and built the largest Dorade box you can imagine in the top of the hanging locker, and a 170 sq. inch duct to the engine room.

I glassed over the rinky dink factory vents that let in more water than air.

It works, Iím happy, and Melissa has learned to live with it.

Awab clamps. Iíve bought hundreds of them, including the cute red plastic booties for the ends. It used to be that you could buy them in bulk packaging from BoatFix which made the cost a lot more reasonable, but Boatfix is no more.

316L SS, rolled threads and edges, and US made.

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Old 04-16-2013, 07:55 PM   #13
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A 4" duct on each each side should be more than adequate ?
Several books Gerr etc tell you how to calculate needed area. For twin 150 to 250 hp diesels the number I remember is about 50in2 clear run per engine, don't quote me though. Diesels need a lot more area than gas.

Mine are inboard on the walkway Gunwales and about in that size range. No ER salt water mist is apparent even in very big windy seas.

It is pricier on a new build to bring the intakes in off the hull sides.
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Old 04-16-2013, 08:30 PM   #14
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i had to get my exhaust manifold worked on and decided while the system was drained, it'd be a prime time to change all the hoses in the ER. So far I have found 5 hose clamps that either the band or worm gear had rusted through!! I know for a fact that none were suspect when I purchased my boat as I climbed in-under-around -and through everywhere with a flashlight and mirror specifically checking for stuff below the waterline or on primary hoses before my maiden trip bringing the boat home across the Gulf of Mexico. I changed all the zinc'd steel or galvanized clamps I found with SS. Apparently the P.O. used chrome or some kind of plated clamps in addition to the afore mentioned home grade stuff while "fixing" the boat for sale. Geez, just leave the obviously needed to replace items there, so I could use the right stuff!!

Anyway if you fall into the couple of years passed used boat owner you may want to grab a flashlight,mirror, and some aspirin/muscle relaxers and include checking these in your spring readying. They truly cost next to nothing and require no more than a screwdriver to maintain-yet they can easily cost you your boat or even your life.

Look everywhere

Entire raw water system Main and Genset
Exhaust hose clamps Main and Genset
Keel cooler
Bilge pumps
shower sump
washdown pump
livewell
Air Conditioning cooling pump
sink drains
rudder and prop shaft stuffing boxes
holding tank hoses esp those used for overboard discharge
ALL thru hulls

Its a little mind blowing when you think of the potential problem points!
A competent surveyor should find these problems and point them out to the potential buyer.

One of the problems with buying a used boat is, you never know the skill level of the previous owner(s) or the people they hired to work on the boat.

Most of what my boat's previous owner did or had done was first class, but he did a really tacky job installing a fan in the V berth. I fixed it.
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Old 04-16-2013, 09:40 PM   #15
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Mine are inboard on the walkway Gunwales and about in that size range. No ER salt water mist is apparent even in very big windy seas.
Mine are tucked inboard also.
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Old 04-16-2013, 10:36 PM   #16
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A competent surveyor should find these problems and point them out to the potential buyer. One of the problems with buying a used boat is, you never know the skill level of the previous owner(s) or the people they hired to work on the boat.
I think the OP is saying that these problems were not evident until a couple of years after the purchase/survey. I wouldn't count on the competence of a single surveyor to catch all problems. My surveyor looked at hoses and clamps and cited the hoses that needed to be replaced, but I doubt he tested them magnetically for iron content to check the SS quality.

I like the list provided by the OP. Thanks for the suggestion. It's now on my to-do list.
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Old 04-17-2013, 12:37 AM   #17
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I wouldn't count on the competence of a single surveyor to catch all problems.

I like the list provided by the OP.
I'm with FlyWright on the surveyor issue. I've bought 8 different boats since 1995 and had all of them surveyed. (Insurance requirement) None of them came close to listing the many problems that popped up soon after the closing. Oh, they were professionally bound, had lots of photos, and of course the ever present disclaimers, but didn't come close to giving a true accounting as to the actual mechanical condition of the boat. (They did satisfy the Insurance folks,however, and that was my goal.) I have a buddy who is a licensed captain, very knowledgeable, lives on his sport fisher in the marina and is always available to inspect a boat with me for a couple of beers and dinner.
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Old 04-17-2013, 02:13 AM   #18
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I think the OP is saying that these problems were not evident until a couple of years after the purchase/survey. I wouldn't count on the competence of a single surveyor to catch all problems.
While interviewing the captain/manager of a 120' corporate yacht I'd been hired to do a writing project for in the early 2000s, I asked him if his vessel, built in 1966, required considerably more maintenance and vigillance than would the brand new 150' or so yacht that was being commssioned at the next dock over. He said no, because all the systems that were wearing out on his yacht were the same systems that were going to start wearing out on the new yacht.

The point being that stuff on a boat is deteriorating, wearing out, breaking, and getting ready to fail all the time. Something looked at by a surveyor in 2013 with no fault found may let go, corrode through, break, split, leak, clog, wear out, or jam in 2015.

While there are good surveyors and not-so-good surveyors, I suspect there are no clairvoyant surveyors. A good survey will tell you the condition of the boat when the survey was done. It will not tell you what the condition of the boat will be two years later.

Hence the PO's smart suggestion of things to keep an eye on as a boat continues to age and the systems continue to deteriorate in the hostile environment in which they live.
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Old 04-17-2013, 11:32 AM   #19
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I did not get a surveyor. Yes I know there are some who think my boat should sink out from under me for committing such a heinous act as to think I could operate without someone else's signing off. I'm that guy whom others seek out by word of mouth to go with them on their 2nd visit to really check the boat over. After 10 minutes aboard without the owner distracting me (usually have interested buyer keep them occupied while I'm looking) I can tell them if they can use the boat right away or there's enough shoddy, glossed over "repairs" that they are going to have lots of tinkering to get it safely useable. My boat fell into the latter group and I'd given myself 4 days in the marina before my wife was arriving for the journey home. On any other boat I'd have just walked away but we'd both agreed that the Mainship had a layout that both of us really liked-if you know about older 34 Mainships you know that you can't just walk away if you find a truly solid specimen. This timeframe was adequate although I had 3.5 full days of dealing with a tropical storm parked directly over my flybridge! As has been said-no surveyor out there is going to test the quality of Stainless used in hose clamps. I however did replace all the ones that weren't stainless or had components that obviously weren't SS, though 99% of the clamps were new. The PO had made an "effort" to made it look maintained.

On the flip side I've had friends one after the other tell me of major issues that popped up once they started cruising a dock queen that had surveyed well. I think a survey is probably an excellent idea for someone who is fresh to boating or that is like several of my friends who have their boats "serviced" a couple times a year and expect it to be like their car and just hop in and go anytime. If they have a hiccup-TowBoat is only a phone call away. "Lets have drinks!" It must be wonderful to have that much money and the carefree attitude it affords them about things that I'd genuinely fret about. I don't think anyone else in the world values MY money as much as I do, so i surely don't let them decide whether or how much of it I should spend. Nosey realtors fall into this group as well-we fired several who had the gall to tell us what $$ bracket of homes we should be looking at! Oddly it was always on a much higher scale than we needed! Peculiar that.

We tried to use a broker when we were boat shopping but it seemed all they were interested in showing us was the boats at the top or 20% above the range we'd set for them. And the boat's invariably would have at the least 1 of the things we'd tell them were ABSOLUTE deal breakers. Our boat's value isn't in having the latest SubZero kitchen or whizbang RadarGPSIdentifierTransmogrifier doo-hickey. The following makes my boat priceless compared to the beautiful 60 Hatts I pass on my way out that I know hasn't moved in 4 years, though they likely spend more annually in upkeep than my purchase price.

Regardless of what society says, value is very subjective to me.


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Old 04-19-2013, 01:48 PM   #20
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While winterizing I tighten all the screw clamps on the engines & generator related plumbing. Most will take a turn or so to tighten up. Also do the plumbing clamps for the A/C units & the heads.
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