Like Tree0Likes

Test driving boat, what should I look for?

Reply
Old 10-04-2007, 10:50 PM
  #1
Registered
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
My Boats: 388 hustler slingshot
Posts: 201
Default Test driving boat, what should I look for?

Thinking about buying a boat this weekend and am going to test drive it on the water. What should i look for while im out on the test ride besides making sure the boats moving when the engines are running? It's a 1998 hustler 388 with twin
502's dynoed out at 600 hp a piece. Carberated engines, twin bravo one drives...what should i look for while test driving it?
chuckd1025 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2007, 11:05 PM
  #2
Registered
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Austin,Texas
Posts: 2,111
Default

There are many things, Maybe someone in the business to help you. A nine year old boat can hold many surprises. Basics would be condition of all fluids, temp while cruising compared to wide open. Oil pressure cold, hot , any variation port and stb. Prior to run compression test, Sound hull, service records, inspect drives and gimbles for slop. Does it idle smooth through out a long idle, or does it tend to load up. Do all gauges work? Do any fluctuate while running. Compare how it shifts in and out of gear port and stb. Good Luck
Jim
MOBILEMERCMAN is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-04-2007, 11:11 PM
  #3
Registered
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Tonganoxie, KS
My Boats: 24' Baja
Posts: 410
Default

Everything listed above. I would also consider finding a tech who would be willing to go with you and check things over.
Brandon is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2007, 08:32 AM
  #4
Gold Member
Gold Member
 
pkspx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL
Posts: 1,218
Default

It would take me hours to type something, so I did a search online and found this from the www.about.com website. Basically plan on a 2+ hour inspection if your going yourself and make sure you look at every detail. This check list will come in handy for you. Honestly, I would seriously inspect it from top to bottom and if possible take someone in the boating industry like a mechanic. Whenever I buy a car, it takes me a good solid hour to thoroughly inspect it.

enjoy


USED BOAT BUYING CHECKLIST

TEST DRIVE - You wouldn't buy a car without test driving it first, would you? Same holds true with a boat, even more so than a car. Boats are finicky animals. They tend to require more attention and maintenance than cars. When you test drive the boat pay close attention to the following things while underway:

Vibration
If it vibrates it could mean a variety of things like a bent propeller. A vibrating boat makes a noisy boat.

Functioning Trim
If you're looking at an inboard/outboard boat check to make sure the trim works, which allows the motor to move from the down position to the angled position.

Response
Rapidly, but carefully, test the steering from one direction to another to see how long it takes the boat to respond.

Planing
Check to see how long it takes the boat to plane after take off.

Shifting
Does the boat slip smoothly into gear, or does it jump?

Reverse
Make sure the boat works in reverse. You never know how important this is until you have to dock.

Gauges and Instruments
Check the temperature, RPM, and speedometer for proper function.

Bilge
Make sure it is doing it's job. If your test ride is not long enough to tell, when you get back to the dock run some water in the engine hole with a water hose until the bilge kicks in.

It's a good idea to take along several people on the test drive. Added weight in a boat can affect it's performance and quickness.

HOURS

Check to see how many hours are on a boat. You measure a car's use by miles and a boat's use by hours. If a boat has more than 500 hours you can expect to pay some money in upgrades and maintenance.

CHECK FOR FLOOR ROT

Wood and water don't mix, especially in the floor of a boat. Carefully inspect the floor for soft spots, which indicate rot. Don't be afraid to get on your hands and knees and smell for floor for mildew.

MAINTENANCE

Ask for a maintenance history on the boat. Find out what major repairs have been made to the boat. If a lot of work has been done to the boat, chances are there will be lots to come, which translates into dollars. Ask if the boat is still under warranty. Also, ask who the boat owner used for repairs and make a point to talk to them.

MARINE SURVEY

It's a good idea to have a qualified marine mechanic thoroughly inspect the boat before purchasing it. To find a marine surveyor call either the Society of Accredited Marine Surveyors - SAMS. If you are going to do it yourself check the spark arrestors and plugs, alternator, belts, hoses, strainer, blower, shift cables, engine alignment, etc. Analyze the oil and make sure it is not cloudy or gritty Cloudy oil can mean the engine block is cracked.

HULL CONDITION

Take a walk around the boat and inspect the hull and make sure it is in good condition. Feel free to tap on the hull all the way around and make sure the hull is consistently solid. Mismatched paint is a sign the boat has been in an accident. Also check for gel-coat blisters and dry rot.

PROPELLER

Check the prop for warping, cracks, or nicks. Any of these things can throw off the performance of the boat.

STORAGE

How has the boat been stored while not in use? Was is stored outside and exposed to the sun and weather? Or was it kept in protected dry storage?

UPHOLSTERY

Depending on how the boat was stored can affect how the upholstery has held up over the years. Check for ripped seams and color fading. Also check the boat cover if there is one.

EXTRAS

It's nice if the owner will sell the boat with a few extras which are probably already on the boat. In my opinion, a depth finder is crucial. You don't want the boat to run aground, much less let your skier run aground. In most states a marine radio is required by law. A stereo is a nice thing to have so you can listen to tunes. Also see if the boat owner will throw in some life jackets and an anchor. And if you are a lucky slalom skier they may throw in a speed control device.

TRAILER

If a trailer comes with the boat you want to buy check the trailer thoroughly. They are not cheap to replace.

Last edited by pkspx; 10-05-2007 at 08:37 AM.
pkspx is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2007, 08:39 AM
  #5
Gold Member
Gold Member
 
pkspx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL
Posts: 1,218
Default

http://www.boats.com/news-reviews/ar....html?lid=2786

more guides. this will help you get little more in depth.

ngine Check List

* Is there oil in the bilge? It may be a sign of an oil leak and warrants closer inspection.
* Are there signs of lubricant leakage around gaskets, freeze plugs and hoses?
* Are the hoses, belts and fittings cracked or brittle?
* Pull a spark plug and see if it appears relatively new, or burnt and poorly gapped. (This will provide an indication of how well serviced the engine is.)
* Is there a white chalky residue on the engine or drive? (This may indicate that it has been running hot.)
* Check the engine's oil condition and level. (If the oil looks milky, water may have entered, indicating the possibility of serious mechanical problems.)
* Check gearcase oil.
* Are the sacrificial anodes on the drive in good shape, or should they have been replaced long ago?
* Are there signs that the drive, rudder or propeller have hit submerged items.
* Look for signs of cavitation damage on the propeller(s), which is indicative of poor performance.
* Check for broken engine mounts.
* Compression check the engine.

If you do not feel qualified to perform any of these tests, then the best course of action is to get it done by a qualified technician.
Boat Check List

Aside from the engine, your inspection should also include the following:

* Check steering and throttle controls and cables.
* Switch on and operate all systems; bilge pump, blower, lights, stereo, winches, freshwater sink and shower, galley stove, head, heater, air conditioner, generator and so forth.
* Make sure all hardware is still firmly attached and check the condition of backing plates where possible.
* On a sailboat, check all rigging, hardware and sails.
* Open and close hatches.
* Check out the fuel tanks, fittings and lines. Be sure to smell for leaks.
* Are the batteries securely fastened in acid-proof containers?
* Perform an out-of-water inspection to see if there are dings or cracks. Also check for stress cracks, chips in the gelcoat, hull blisters and other hull irregularities.
* Is the propeller shaft and rudder stock straight?
* Is the upholstery in good condition and the stitching still holding?
* Does the cabin smell like mildew?
* Check through-hull fittings to ensure they are not loose and leaking.
* Check electrical items and connections for rust.
pkspx is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2007, 08:40 AM
  #6
Geronimo36
Gold Member
 
Panther's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Elkton, MD
My Boats: 36' Apache Warrior / 22' Apache Scout
Posts: 11,838
Default

Flog It!!!

Better to have it break on the test drive prior to purchase then when you're on the boat with family/friends for the maiden voyage!
Panther is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2007, 10:51 AM
  #7
Geronimo36
Gold Member
 
Panther's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Elkton, MD
My Boats: 36' Apache Warrior / 22' Apache Scout
Posts: 11,838
Default

When I bought the Scarab I went to look at it..... Thoroughly looked the boat over, top to bottom. Put a deposit down ($500 or something like that), did compression tests and leak down tests, then scheduled a test ride.

When I was idling out Pt. Pleasant inlet the sales person asked me if I was going to buy the boat today..... I turned to him, just as I was pushing the throttles forward and said; "I'll buy it as long as it doesn't blow up or sink."

Then when we idled back in the inlet after romping on some 3-4 ft waves he asked me how I would like to pay for it..... I said; "I'll cut you another check for $1K and give you the rest after the survey is complete."

He was a little pissed because he thought the sale was done but I bought the boat 4 days later and drove it home on the ocean that night......

Last edited by Panther; 10-05-2007 at 10:53 AM.
Panther is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2007, 10:52 AM
  #8
Registered
 
sellsman11's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Pickwick Lake, USA
Posts: 1,296
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Panther View Post
Flog It!!!

Better to have it break on the test drive prior to purchase then when you're on the boat with family/friends for the maiden voyage!

I LOVE IT!! You have no idea how true that statement is with 90% of my test runs with customers!! I have found that the best way to avoid wide open throttle with someone that you have never ridden with before behind the wheel is to scare the hell out of them immediately. Then turn the controls over to them. They will generally go a little easier!!!

Last edited by sellsman11; 10-05-2007 at 10:54 AM.
sellsman11 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2007, 11:00 AM
  #9
Registered
 
mwdill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: SML VA
My Boats: 02 HUSTLER SLINGSHOT
Posts: 2,952
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by sellsman11 View Post
I LOVE IT!! You have no idea how true that statement is with 90% of my test runs with customers!! I have found that the best way to avoid wide open throttle with someone that you have never ridden with before behind the wheel is to scare the hell out of them immediately. Then turn the controls over to them. They will generally go a little easier!!!
done that before! works very well :
mwdill is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2007, 11:34 AM
  #10
Registered
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
My Boats: 388 hustler slingshot
Posts: 201
Default

had compression test done and survey of the boat, everything as turned out well as expected the last of the deal is a test run. I will test run the boat tonight and keep in mind what everyone has told me to look for and i'll let ya know how it turns out. I know pretty good about boats but its always good to hear others opinions on things like this before spending money and getting into a situation, so thanks everyone with the help
chuckd1025 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Reply

Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
86formula242ls
Formula
2
08-19-2008 07:54 PM
Deltarat
Fountain
8
11-19-2005 12:54 PM
Strip Poker 388
General Boating Discussion
0
08-01-2005 02:17 AM



Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:51 PM.


Copyright 2011 OffShoreOnly. All rights reserved.