Originally Posted by NCheaven
Trawlerfest was so valuable for me. So have been the Power Squadron courses, even though I took a Coast Guard course decades ago, and have sailed or power-boated most of the last 46 years. The more courses, the better, in my opinion. Look at lots of boats, it’s fun. Found many reviews in boat mags on line. Look at boat brand owners’ pages on TF, and look at their owners’ association web sites. Wait for the one you know is right. I looked at several Camano 31s before finding the right one. One had all of the exhaust hose paint gone, made me suspect it had been run hard. Bought one with most paint still on, checked total gallons and total hours, it had averaged less than 2gal/hr, a bit over displacement speed. (But most engine manuals suggest various amounts of time at much higher rpm frequently to clear out exhaust, etc. Read about that, too.) It’s not the hours, it’s the revs, the torque, etc, that equate to wear. But, those are just things to ask the surveyor to check out. I didn’t catch everything, but I’m very pleased with the outcome, especially engine, transmission. You’ll find a great one with patience and time spent walking docks, talking to owners, dockmasters. Steve Zimmerman did a great seminar on how to select the right boat for a prospective owner at Trawlerfest that helped me a lot. Mistake I made: Have the fuel polished, and have the filters replaced another 10 or so hours later before taking a long cruise, especially if boat had not been used much in prior two years.
Enjoy the process!