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Old 03-16-2013, 03:07 PM   #1
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maybe im going to start a war but i need to know its killing me. why do bayliners have a bad rap? Ive watched countless youtube videos of smaller 32' footers in some pretty rough weather. very reliable engines. is it all in the cabin ?? meaning they use lesser quality stuff? i wanna know peoples opinions. or do they just have a bad rap bc there cheaper? People with big bucks trying to dominate?? like i said not trying to start a war just curious guys.

thank you, Justin

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Old 03-16-2013, 03:38 PM   #2
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Good question! I couldn't understand this either.

Wade & Maureen
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Old 03-16-2013, 05:07 PM   #3
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Many years ago at a trip to the Annapolis Powerboat Show I was on a boat and comparing it to a Bayliner ( i forget what brand boat i was on at the time) The sales rep for that company said (with a snear) that Bayliner was the "Chevy" of boats. I said what's wrong with that? Ulimately I bought a 32' Bayliner, ran it for 17 years and put thousands of miles on it. i ran it on plane when I was with planing boats and ran at hull speed when I ran with trawlers. Bayliner has a hell of a marketing plan. they get you in your early 20's with a 16' runabout and every time you're ready for a larger or different style of boat, they have one for you. Not a bad plan! After a lot of years running both a 27' and a 32' with no problems I moved to a Mainship 390; which might be described as the Chevy of trawlers.
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Old 03-16-2013, 05:27 PM   #4
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thats awesome to hear. glad you chose the bayliner anyways
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Old 03-16-2013, 06:47 PM   #5
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NO good reason anymore...and they never were so bad in the motoryacht line.
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Old 03-16-2013, 07:05 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by justinclay View Post
i need to know its killing me. why do bayliners have a bad rap?
Insecurity maybe? The boats are fine for their intended purpose.
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Old 03-16-2013, 07:15 PM   #7
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was looking at the 3388s and look like an extremely good buy for me.
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Old 03-16-2013, 07:16 PM   #8
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Old 03-16-2013, 07:52 PM   #9
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As a 10-year Bayliner 285 owner, I can tell you this has come up more than once on the Bayliner Owners Club board.

Bayliner is owned by Brunswick, and the hull material, construction methods, engines, mechanical systems, bimini poles, door handles, cup holders, lights, and just about everything that you normally think of as maintenance items are identical to the rest of their line.

If you don't like the idea of owning the "chevy" of boats, and can pay about twice as much, you can buy a Sea Ray, also from Brunswick. The interior designs are flashier and finish materials are more luxurious. They are nice boats!

Personally, I intended to use mine, not show it. I found the Bayliner interior lay-out much better than even larger Sea Rays (and just about every other brand.) The dinette seats 4 around a normal, rectangular table. No designer-style arching couch with a little oval table in front of it. The mid berth has a solid door separating it from the cabin. Even the V-berth has more privacy with good separation from the dinette and galley areas.

As you can tell, after 10 seasons of taking this boat everywhere we could, I'm still a fan. And I'm a trawler guy at heart, I had real reservations buying a "Clorox bottle" style boat at first. No more. We're going to miss it, but we needed just a little more room and range.
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Old 03-16-2013, 09:21 PM   #10
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It's all perception, and perhaps jealousy that Bayliner makes boating affordable.

In my (almost) 50 years, I've owned 11 boats, 4 of them Bayliners (16' Capri, 23' Trophy, 3870 Motoryacht, 4087 Aft Cabin). I have nothing but praise for all of them. Each met or exceeded my needs and wants,and I wouldn't hesitate to own another.

Also, you'll find the Bayliner Owners Club is perhaps the most comprehensive manufacturer specific website available. From 15' to 57', gas, diesel, and even sail (yes, Bayliner made sailboats!), the BOC covers them all- and 99% of the time without the drama found on other sites. You'll find technical info, repair data and help., upgrades, and an extensive "DIY/How-to" area.
Peter- Marine Insurance Guru & tuna fishing addict!

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Old 03-16-2013, 10:44 PM   #11
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There was a big fuss several years back about Merc Bravo III outdrives, which were on a lot of gas powered Bayliners in the 20+ foot range. Corrosion, more than just what one might expect from stray current or all the other explanations that are out there. Several boats in our marina were affected. I guess the problem was with the outdrives, but Bayliners got a black eye from it as well, since as I recall they dodged the warranty issue and blamed Mercruiser.

I think the larger (38+) diesel boats are thought of much better. I really like the looks of the 45/47 PH models, though I've never been aboard one.
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Old 03-16-2013, 11:02 PM   #12
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Bayliners are terrible! Wait...I own a bayliner!!

Seriously- I think some of their smaller/older bowriders got a bad reputation for construction techniques. Big difference though in their smaller boats and their larger motor yachts. Is the fit and finish on my 45 pilothouse the same as my Monk 36? No, of course not. Is it still pretty nice and 110% functional? definitely. As well, the Monk 36 and my bayliner 4550 will basically cruise the exact same waters with no appreciable difference in abilities to handle said waters. For older boats it is truly more about maintenance and care than brand name. I can show you a 25 year old bayliner motoryacht that would be better than the same vintage hatteras or Kadey krogen or any other brand, depending on how said boat was taken care of.
The 38 sedan by Bayliner and the 45/47 pilothouses are the 3 best motor yacht sellers with a strong market following. The 32 is a nice boat with nice lines and get that boat with diesels and she is a sweet and economical little cruiser.
The biggest "issue" most of the larger bayliners have is the name "Bayliner" on the side of the boat. Take that name off and let boaters look at the boats for what they are and they typically have great things to say. I'm not going to pretend a bayliner is a Nordhavn b/c it is what it is but for what you pay and what you get and the quality of what you get for that price is a very, very good deal.
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Old 03-16-2013, 11:06 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by ARoss View Post
I really like the looks of the 45/47 PH models, though I've never been aboard one.
Well, if you get the chance, check one out. They have a terrific layout and pilot house.
Codger 1941.. Constant pursuit of the ultimate SoCal Cruising boat.
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Old 03-16-2013, 11:11 PM   #14
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I am sorry I am going to offend some people by saying this, but my experience has been with many (not all) of the people that are operating them. Nearly every time I encounter a boat coming into a anchorage way to fast and throwing a huge swell, it turns out to be a Bayliner. It's like some one else said, these folks start out with a 16 foot and work their way up until they get to the 45 footer. But they still think their boat is throwing out a 16 footer swell !!!!
I guess they just missed the safe boating class the night they talked about being considerate to other boaters.
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Old 03-16-2013, 11:14 PM   #15
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to many snobs out there, they do not like that you could buy a nicer, better equiped boat for less than they paid, easier to critisise.[I have never owned a Bayliner]
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Old 03-16-2013, 11:27 PM   #16
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Amazing. Seems like many boaters like to boat in a "running shoe," considering the multitude of models/variations Bayliner makes. Makes me wonder if I'm "out of step." The Coot is the antithesis of a Bayliner. Nevertheless, whatever gives us joy. Guess I'm still "hung up" with the plastic toy tugboat I had as a five-year-old.

Kar-KEEN-ez Koot
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Old 03-17-2013, 12:17 AM   #17
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I will echo the responses of some of the other happy Bayliner owners and former owners that posted.

I think the real "bayliner problem" is that people tend to catergorize all Bayliner boats together.

Like any large manufacturer Bayliner produced a multitude of models, from inexpensive entry level ski boats to the 5788, a large motoryacht by any measure.

Does anybody think less of the Z06 Corvette, or the Surburban, just because Chevy made the Vega? No they don't, and it should be the same with boats.

The truth is that Bayliner boats are production boats, with a mid level fit and finish. I have been on some very expensive fishing boats that had much more spartan fit and finish, and boats that are much fancier on the inside.

What Bayliner did really well, something that very few other boat manufacturers were able to do was to streamline production through volume and production efficiencies. Where other manufacturers bought for example fiberglass resin by the truck load, Bayliner bought it by the trainload. This buying power along with engineering their production processes lowered unit cost, and many believe helped drive some other great but smaller manufacturers out of business.

Something else Bayliner was great at is supplying boats to fit a market. It is my understanding that they actually studied (and still do) market demographics and built boats around their intended markets wants and needs. This has made them extremely popular. Instead of a little company saying I'll build a XXX size boat and people will buy it, Bayliner studied what people at different stages of life wanted in a boat and built boats to fit their needs. That is a huge concept that smaller manufacturers never had the resources to do.
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Old 03-17-2013, 01:44 AM   #18
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The entry level Bayliner boats are built as inexpensively as possible to attract the largest possible entry level market. So they have a reputation of lower component quality, inexpensive workmanship, and so on. Their larger boats's are very well built but the basic Bayliner philosophy of building the most affordable boat possible still stands.

The Bayliner reputation has little to do with the boats and everything to do with their market. When you build a less expensive product you tend to attract buyers who otherwise may not be in a position to buy this type of boat. Which means you start attracting buyers whose primary interest in boating may not be becoming real good at it. They buy for status, to keep up with the Joneses, for social entertainment reasons, because "they alwys wanted a boat," for fishing, and so on.

And when you have created a large customer base of relatively inexperienced boaters, many of whom are not that interested in learning navigation, the rules of the road, seamanship, and so on but simply want to "go boating," you get a lot of people out driving your boats who aren't very good at it and who can and do make a lot of mistakes or do stupid things. And since all these people are driving boats that say "Bayliner" on the side, the brand takes on the reputation of the operators.

And it doesn't take very many encounters with a few bad apples to color the whole barrel in the eyes of conscientious and competent boaters.
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Old 03-17-2013, 06:44 AM   #19
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Thank you all. Especially you marin. I had never thought of maybe the people in bayliner boats being uninformed idiots. Guess buying a boat expensive or not tends to make people lose sight of the real reason they bought a boat. To enjoy the waters safely. Thats sad to hear.
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Old 03-17-2013, 08:32 AM   #20
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I'd be very much in agreement with Marin's reply.

In the the sailboat world the same rationale exists. There's numerous "beginner" boats built by high volume manufacturers ie: Hunter, Catalina, Beneteau, Jenneau, etc. They've been building boats for many years; and for a lot of folks, they represent an entry-level boat that gets most boaters started.

The smaller boats are coastal cruisers, not intended for real blue-water applications like some of the better-known boats like Island Packet, Tartan, Pacific Seacraft, etc. That's not to say folks have not used them as such. Many have and are satisfied with them.

Sometimes a Chevy is just fine. You can take a road trip in a Chevy or a BMW. Both will get you there. Just a different experience.

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