Tired of your current gig and dreaming of a new career in the high-performance marine industry? Think it might be whole lot more fun and lucrative than what you’re currently doing to make a living?
More fun it may be, depending on your current job. Same goes for how much better—or worse—it may pay.
But if you think a career in the go-fast marine business is going to get you on the water all the time, especially during the boating season, you’re misinformed. Because weekend work—more often off the water than on it—comes with the territory. In fact, your time on the water might actually decline if take a job in the go-fast marine world.
Just ask Stephen Miles of Stephen Miles Design in Owensboro, Ky. Miles and his six-man crew work six days a week. So when it came time to paint his personal boat, a 2006 Cobalt 343 powered by a pair of Mercury Racing 500EFI engines, Miles handled it one airbrush blast at a time—on Sundays.
“Painting my boat took 18 Sundays,” he said. “We are so grateful to have all the work we do with our first two new Nor-Tech 450s to paint and a steady string of Outerlimits that will continue through January, and I don’t see that stopping anytime soon. So when it came to painting my Cobalt, that was the product of working 18 Sundays.”
While his 34-footer now has a high-performance style-paintjob and runs a solid 70 mph, Miles has no intention of hopping it up.
“This boat seats eight comfortably,” he said. “We work hard, so when we have the chance to get on the water at Lake Kentucky we want to relax. We haul butt to where we’re going and then just chill and, responsibly of course, enjoy a few adult beverages.
“I remember Cobalt 343 that Bob Teague of Teague Custom Marine was involved with that ran close to 100 mph,” he continued. “That was a pretty cool.”
Teague chuckled when reminded of that project.
“It had Ilmor 710s and our TCM XR Platinum drives and ran close to 90 mph or so. “Cobalt should bring that boat back. It really handled great.”
None of that is in the cards for Miles’ Cobalt, though he does plan on adding a Bimini top in the near future.
“It’s a cruiser,” he said. “When we I have the time, I use it to take out my family and friends and chill. I am blessed to get invited on poker runs all the time, though I rarely have time do to them. I use my own boat to just relax.”
As Stephen Miles Design has grown, personal boating opportunities have become fewer and farther between. He is, after all, in the high-performance marine industry.