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Old 09-25-2017, 05:26 PM   #21
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IMO, its the easiest boat check I write all year. I have used both, but like Sea Tow better for the SD area. The guys who run the boats are solid, and care. No one is getting rich running these operations, and as noted, they are a valuable service.
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Old 09-25-2017, 05:42 PM   #22
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IMO, its the easiest boat check I write all year. I have used both, but like Sea Tow better for the SD area. The guys who run the boats are solid, and care. No one is getting rich running these operations, and as noted, they are a valuable service.
We have both and have never used either one for a tow. However, we still don't mind paying as we do use them regularly for local knowledge. Now, you don't have to be a member to do that but it feels better that we are and one day we might need a tow.
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Old 09-25-2017, 05:55 PM   #23
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So for those of us that don't have this insurance what does it cost?
Eric, my Boat US Gold Towing is $175.00/year. Even though I have twins, it sure feels good down here where most cruising is done in the open sea.
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Old 09-25-2017, 05:59 PM   #24
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Hmmm wonder if the tow company trolls the forums....
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Old 09-25-2017, 06:29 PM   #25
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Thank's Codger,
That's what I was looking for.
At my (our) age one thinks of things never thought of before.
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Old 09-25-2017, 07:05 PM   #26
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Hmmm wonder if the tow company trolls the forums....
The company owners are busy enough not to waste their time here.

They may enjoy it for what it is ....but care what pops up in a towing thread unless related to their franchise.....is dust n the wind.

Both major companies have business nodels that work, even though different in some respects.
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Old 09-25-2017, 07:17 PM   #27
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The problem may be a drive plate/torsional coupling that has failed. Should be a much cheaper fix than the transmission itself.

David
I was helping on a delivery this past June when we lost the starboard transmission. It was the drive plate/dampener plate. The plate was less than $250. The labor, a couple of boat bucks. We changed ours on Hobo. Being a single with good access it took less than 4 hours.
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Old 09-25-2017, 07:44 PM   #28
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If owner does not want to pay, he can hide in the hot engine room!
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Old 09-25-2017, 08:32 PM   #29
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Old 09-25-2017, 09:34 PM   #30
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+1 they are also good for local knowledge. This summer I called them to get some very specific channel advice (hell gate in georgia, maybe 20' wide channel?). Even though I had been through before trying to use charts, it was dicey and I had to get thru mid ebb this time..

Since they tow someone off the mud twice a week there and can tell you exactly how to get thru.

And by the way that's the definition of a win win right there.
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Old 09-25-2017, 09:48 PM   #31
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I have unlimited Gold from Boat US as well. Very cheap for the peace of mind it gives you.

But I thought this was a single vs twins debate thread?!

Ive got a single diesel inboard and rudder. I always wonder what could happen??? But then I think of cost of ownership and fuel etc. And I always come back to the "single side".
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Old 09-25-2017, 10:57 PM   #32
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The tow insurance is a reasonable expense particularly in certain waters where tossing an anchor in is not a good or workable solution due to deep water and major currents. Many places in the PNW come to mind. I have had to use the tow services 3x in 50 years of boating. As an aside; I always thought twins would avoid the towing situation. Recently I came across two situations where that was not so. The first a GB with twins and dirty fuel in choppy conditions. The other a prop wrapped on underwater line attached to an anchor pulling shaft out of coupling and jamming the prop on the rudder disabling both rudders.
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Old 09-26-2017, 02:30 AM   #33
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A single might not push me to unlimited towing membership, but a single with a V drive or an outdrive would.
Yup. A V-drive or a Z-drive would make me consider towing membership (if it was available).
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Old 09-26-2017, 05:46 AM   #34
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I have towed lots of twins for different reasons.

Often it is more an assist through tricky spots or docking, but fuel issues, fire, steering all can stop a twin in its tracks.
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Old 09-26-2017, 06:31 AM   #35
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This argument kind of reminds me of the "sailboat" argument. When I was doing assistance towing, sailboat owners always claimed they would never need to be towed because they had sails. Almost 40% of our work was sailboats...not just ungroundings but tows for one reason or another.
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Old 09-26-2017, 06:42 AM   #36
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You said it correctly, much of your work was sailboats, not sailors.
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Old 09-26-2017, 08:01 AM   #37
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What ever the rules are, Boat US towing has gone out of their way to be kind to me.

I was once on a friends boat that broke down near a dock. We managed to drift to the dock and were safe but we needed a tow to a marina that could do the work. Technically they didn't have to tow us for free but they did.

I suspect if you abuse the privilege they may get stricter about the rules. Both of us aboard were members and neither of us had ever used the tow service.
Why anyone would ever have anything but the Gold coverage, I don't know.

But like Parks, my experience is that they will help you under almost any circumstances.
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Old 09-26-2017, 08:25 AM   #38
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+1 they are also good for local knowledge. This summer I called them to get some very specific channel advice (hell gate in georgia, maybe 20' wide channel?). Even though I had been through before trying to use charts, it was dicey and I had to get thru mid ebb this time..

Since they tow someone off the mud twice a week there and can tell you exactly how to get thru.

And by the way that's the definition of a win win right there.
We also have a membership but (fingers-crossed) have not yet had to use them. When you say "use them for local knowledge", what is the best way to contact them? do you mean call them on a cell or use a working channel on VHF...?
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Old 09-26-2017, 08:34 AM   #39
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We also have a membership but (fingers-crossed) have not yet had to use them. When you say "use them for local knowledge", what is the best way to contact them? do you mean call them on a cell or use a working channel on VHF...?
Call the local franchise on the phone. They usually have the local (familiar) captain call you back.

If it is about something right at your location, the trying the radio may be best, but often, they will ask to call or be called on the phone if it is beyond a basic answer.
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Old 09-26-2017, 10:15 AM   #40
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Call the local franchise on the phone. They usually have the local (familiar) captain call you back.

If it is about something right at your location, the trying the radio may be best, but often, they will ask to call or be called on the phone if it is beyond a basic answer.
Wifey B: We always call. We think of the radio more as something we'd use on "official business" such as needing a tow.

Much like lockmasters and bridge tenders and dockmasters and all the others you meet while cruising, you talk to all different kinds but we've found them all friendly.

It's interesting that coming down the west coast from Neah Bay to San Francisco you are able to use the CG stations along the way for bar (the inlet type, not the drinking type) and other information. However, in other places, the go to professionals are the tow captains.

Oh, and coming down the Illinois and the Mississippi, the tow boats as in those pushing the barges were the available knowledge. We contacted a couple for permission to pass and their preference of where and they were helpful and seemed very appreciative that a pleasure boat was giving them respect and consideration. Once years ago when we were with friends on the TN Tom and got stuck at a lock until after dark, heading in an area none of us knew, a tow was incredible help. They took their super spot light and lit all the area ahead of them. Covered at least a quarter mile. Then they told us of the cut off to the marina and how to identify it and even shined their light to assist us there. Wasn't our boat we were on but made me know if I ever got a big boat, I wanted a light like they had.

Everywhere you go there are people glad to help you if you ask and show them respect. Like if it's your first time locking, tell the lockmaster and they'll walk you through and make it as easy on you as they can.

Other boaters will help and answer often as well. Just be careful there. You don't know their experience. We were on the ICW one day and heard a boat in front of us give advice to an approaching boat that was so very wrong. He was telling the boat to keep to the starboard side of the channel and needed to be saying port to the approaching boat. It was starboard side going in our direction not coming from the opposite. We corrected and the guy got angry, then we tried to explain it that his left was the other guy's right and he just wasn't getting it.
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