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Buying A Used Boat

(category: Buying-A-Boat, Word count: 442)
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Those of you who have the money and plan to keep

one boat forever, should buy it new. If you happen

to be on a budget and skeptical about owning a

boat, you should buy it used.

Buying used is great for some, although it isn't

always the most glamorous decision. The oceans

and lakes are filled with boaters who are far

wealthier than most. Many boaters go well beyond

their means and finance their boats at extreme

levels.

What really counts with a used boat is being out

there on the water. Someone who is out there

every weekend on his beat up boat is a great

boater. A businessman who only has time to ride

on his 60 foot yacht once or twice a year isn't

considered a boater at all.

If you look around the water, you'll se that the

little boats are the ones that move, while the

big boats are the ones that never move. Those

that are too busy earning money and never have

the time to go boating shouldn't really have a

boat at all.

New boats can lose half of their value in less

than 2 years. With a used boat, the previous

owner has already fixed the problems that are

associated with new boats. The previous owner

has also already hassled with the dealer to get

the warranty service taken care of.

A used boat normally hasn't be used very much

at all. A boat will sit a majority of the time,

which is nothing like a used car. You can find

many boats with less than a couple hundreds hours

of engine time. For the sake of comparison,

look at how many hours are on the engine of your

car.

A used boat will already have scratches and

dings, so you won't feel half as bad when you

add a few of your own. When you purchase your

used boat, you should leave at least a grand to

outfit the boat and make any necessary repairs.

A used boat will normally come with dock lines,

life jackets, spare props, a radio, safety

equipment, and other nice additions. New boat

owners will have to pay hundreds of dollars

for these kinds of things.

The wild card is, of course, whether or not the

previous boat owner did the proper maintenance

of the boat. Prior to buying you should always

get the boat surveyed to be sure that it's in

reasonable condition. This way, you'll know

your getting a great used boat.

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Types Of Boats Available

(category: Buying-A-Boat, Word count: 430)
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There are many boats out there on the market, with

something for everyone. If you are new to boating,

selecting the right boat can be hard. There are

boats for every purpose on the water, all you have

to do is find the one for you.

To help you in your quest, we'll go over the several

types of boats available. This way, you'll know

the differences when you head out to buy one of

your own.

1. Vessel

The vessel is the most common name for a boat, as

it's the description used or capable of being used

on the water. Basically, it's another name used for

a boat or anything capable of being on the water.

2. Power boat

A power boat is any boat or vessel that's propelled

by machinery. Fishing boats are great examples,

as they are powered by motors or engines.

3. Houseboat

A houseboat is fitted for use as a living vessel or

for leisurely cruising. Normally, a houseboat will

include living accomodations such as sleeping

quarters, kitchen facilities, and even a full bath.

The cruising models are normally propelled by

power.

4. Sailboat

A sailboat is any boat that's under sail along with

no mechanical means of propulsion. The modern

sailboats range from one person boats to luxury

yachts that can accomodate several people. They

are divided into three basic types:

1. Daysailer - This is a small boat that's

designed for comfortable sailing without sleeping

accomodations. It offers a roomy cockpit and can

also contain an outboard auxillary engine as well.

2. Cruiser - Cruisers are medium sized or

large boats that contain a cabin with sleeping

quarters, toilet, food area, and usually an auxillary

engine that's built inside.

3. Racer - Racers are boats built for speed

and ease of handling - normally at the expense of

comfort.

5. Zodiac

The Zodiac brand of high performance aluminum boats

are some of the most popular in the entire boating

industry. These boats are constructed with a

conventional rigid hull with increased buoyancy and

stability. The deep V hulls offered by these boats

are made to take any weather. They are well known

for their prowess and are used all over the world

for commercial search and rescue operations.

6. Catamaran

These boats come with twin hulls. They provide

safety, comfort, speed, and stability that's

unmatched by single hulled boats. Popular with

boating, they offer you a new twist to hitting

the water.

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After Your Boat Purchase

(category: Buying-A-Boat, Word count: 299)
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Once you've made the purchase on a brand new boat

you'll be very excited - as you should be! The

first thing to do is celebrate with your family and

friends, you deserve it. You shouldn't rush out

on the water immediately after the purchase, as

you have some things to take care of first.

If you are new to boating, you should take a

safety course first. There is a lot to know about

boats. Being out on the water is a lot of fun,

although there are things you should know and

things you should always be aware of.

After buying your boat, you should register it and

re-title the boat and trailer if you need to. Pay

your sales tax and apply any up to date registration

stickers if you need to. Also, make sure you buy

the proper insurance for your boat, as it will

protect you while you are on the water.

When you make your first trip on the water, you

should do so with an experienced boater. You can

have them show you turning in tight spaces, even

trailering and docking. Practice docking in

different currents and take the helm with the

boater there to help you. Get comfortable at the

helm enough to where you'll feel comfortable taking

others out for a ride.

The world of boating can be very fun, offering you

many things to do and a lot to see. Boating offers

plenty of freedom as well, especially for those who

are completely new to boating. Your first boat

purchase is very important, as it opens up new doors

in life. Your family will enjoy boating, all you

have to do is give it a chance!

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Buying Inflatable Boats

(category: Buying-A-Boat, Word count: 454)
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As you are probably already aware of, inflatable

boats are very popular today. Each distinct group

of inflatable boat is designed for a specific use

and therefore equipped with different components

and equipment.

If your looking for a small boat to get you from

your ship to the shore, a typical inflatable boat

is the best answer. If you are looking for a

medium sized boat for diving or swimming, there

are many choices in that area as well. For recreation

or rescue work, there are large inflatable boats

available as well.

Dealers

The location of a reputable dealer is very important,

as you don't want to travel too far to get an

inflatable boat. Whether you need parts, repairs,

or just technical support - a close dealer can also

be a close friend. As a new boat owner, you may

also have questions, need to claim your warranty,

or just need regular servicing. No matter how

you look at it, a close dealer is always better

than having to travel.

Prices

Many years ago, inflatable boats were the most

expensive types of boats and only a small amount

of people could even afford them. The reason for

this, was the use of exotic materials and the

numerous hours of hand labor that went into their

construction.

Today, there are machines that do a majority of

the construction work. Zodiac and its sister

company Sevylor, are the leading low cost producers

today thanks to technology. You can even finance

an inflatable boat if you need to, making them

available to almost everyone now.

Warranty

You may have heard claims from all competitors,

with each one promising they have the best or even

the longest warranty. A few years ago, a company

offered a lifetime warranty - although they soon

disappeared shortly thereafter. Many manufacturers

will use an attractive warranty to substitute for

quality or even proper boat design.

In the back of your mind, you should be sure that

the company you buy from will be around long enough

to deliver on their warranty. Zodiac has been

building inflatable boats for over 50 years, and

offer a limited 5 year warranty on their inflatable

boats. Therefore, Zodiak is one of the best you

can buy today.

With all inflatable boats, you should know which

type you want before you purchase. You can always

look around and see what each dealer offer, then

plan your purchase accordingly. An inflatable

boat is great to have, especially for those who

own big ships and vessels. You can't go wrong with

these boats either - as they serve many different

useful purposes.

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Choosing The Right Engine

(category: Buying-A-Boat, Word count: 449)
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Choosing the engine (or propulsion system) for your

boat is very important. Both the weight and the

horsepower will have a major impact on the performance

of your boat. If you have a boat that's underpowered,

the engine will work twice as hard, giving you poor

performance.

Now, we will take a look at the motors available

for boats and vessels:

Outboard motor

An outboard motor is very popular and very useful on

small boats. These motors are very light, powerful,

and extremely quiet. Normally mounted on the transom

of a boat, there are boats available that offer a

motor well or even a bracket to mount the motor to.

The entire motor will swivel about, providing easy

steering as the turning propeller pushes the stern

about. Outboard motors come in many different sizes

and the horsepower can use different types of fuel.

Stern drive

These motors are also known as I/O engines, and

normally heavier than outboard motors. Consisting

of an engine mounted inboard and a lower unit

attached to the transom, these motors offer power

and versitility. You can also tilt the motor up

and down to help provide boat trim while you cruise.

Inboards

On boats that are over 26 feet in length, these

motors are very popular. Similiar to the stern drive

motor, the inboard motor is mounted inside the boat

towards the center, giving you good weight proportion.

Inboards connect directly to the transmission, then

on through the hull of the boat. Then, the shaft

is attached to a propeller which will turn and

propel the boat. The shaft is fixed and doesn't

swivel around. Therefore, a rudder is mounted

behind the shaft and propeller to help deflect the

flow of water which provides your steering direction.

Jet drive

Jet drive propulsion systems have a big advantage -

no propeller to cause damage or injury to those in

the water, including marine life. Normally, they

are inboard engines that will take in water that

flows through a pump, powered by an impeller.

Then, the water is discharged at a very high pressure

through a nozzle that will propel the boat. To

provide steering for the boat, the nozzle will

swivel. For personal watercraft, a jet drive is

the way to go.

Keep in mind that when power isn't being applied,

jet driven boats will lose steering, as the stream

of water that propels the boat won't be there.

Therefore, always keep any part of your body away

from the pump intake - and never operate these types

of boats in shallow water.

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Inspecting Your New Boat

(category: Buying-A-Boat, Word count: 439)
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The viewing, or inspecting your boat is a very

important part of the buying process. Inspecting

will allow you to see what you are buying before

you pay any money.

You may want to use a surveyor to do this, as they

will perform a very detailed inspection of the

boat you are interested in. You can be present

if you like, as this will give you the chance to

ask questions if you like.

Although using a surveyor is the best way to do

an inspection, you can do it yourself if you are

experienced and confident enough. There are many

parts of the boat to inspect, which makes it

nearly impossible for beginners.

If you inspect yourself, make sure you look at

the bottom of the hull, the interior, the control

cables, electrical system, pumps, and be sure

that everything is in working order. If the boat

has been well maintained, you shouldn't have a

problem looking everything over.

The engine should also be checked, as it is very

important to the boat. If you don't know a lot

about boat engines or engines in general, you

should get a mechanic to look over it for you. You

may want to do this anyway, as the engine can

be very tough to inspect.

If everything is up to par, it's time to take a

test drive. Before you fire up the engine, check

to see if it's already warm. If the engine has

trouble starting or smokes when cold, the seller

could have warmed up the engine prior to you

arriving to disguise any problems.

Check for oil leaks as well, checking the bilges

at the start and end of the test drive. When

moving around, see how the boat performs. You

should experiment with hitting the waves from

different angles, looking for any type of roll

or pitch.

Make sure you also test that all the instruments

are working correctly, then run the engine for a

period of time to see if it overheats.

If you are buying a sail boat, put the sails up

and see how the boat performs under wind pressure

alone. Also, make sure you examine the mast and

how the boat rigs under load.

If the boat you are planning to buy doesn't pass

any of your tests, don't rule it out just yet.

If you are willing to put both time and money into

making things work, you can use any problems as

bargaining tools to try and get a lower price on

the boat.

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Getting Started With Boating

(category: Buying-A-Boat, Word count: 323)
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One of the best things about boating is the fact

that there are many boats designed for many

different activities. For the majority of boaters,

a general purpose craft that serves as a fish, ski,

and picnic boat is ideal.

To help you narrow down your search, ask yourself

how you plan to use the boat. Fishing, cruising,

water skiing, watersports, racing, or a bit of

everything is what you should be wondering. There

is a boat out there for you, all you have to do is

find it.

Finding the right size

Finding the right size of boat depends on how many

people you'll have boating with you and where you

plan to go. All new boats have an "NMMA capacity

plate" that wil you how many people you can safely

have on the boat at a time. If you plan to use

a trailer, you shouldn't get a boat bigger than

26 feet in length.

Power needs

Those who plan to water ski will need more power

while those planning to fish will need less. The

boaters of today will also be able to choose from

new engines that are more efficient in fuel and

very friendly to the environment as well.

Boat costs

There are boats for every type of budgets. Many

new boat owners are very surprised to find that they

can get their dream boat for much less than they

ever expected. You can get new or used boats at

a reputable dealership with financing, taking

advantage of low monthly payments.

Boating can be a lot of fun, as you long as you

don't go overboard when you first begin. There is

a lot to know about boats, costs, and types, which

is something you'll learn over the years. Always

have fun - and you'll enjoy boating for many, many

years.

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Buying A Cruising Yacht

(category: Buying-A-Boat, Word count: 485)
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Everyone out there likes the idea of a shiny new

boat. While buying a new yacht is an accomplishment

in itself, you shouldn't spend over your budget then

be unable to take it anywhere. When you buy a

yacht, always look at what comes with the boat

and decide if it's everything you want.

Types of construction

GRP

Almost all cruising yachts out there today are made

of GRP construction. GRP material is long lasting,

strong, and easy to repair. Osmosis is the only

real problem here, as the blisters it leaves can be

sometimes costly to repair.

Steel

Steel is always a great a idea, as it is by far the

strongest material. There have been steel boats ran

into reefs and banks and received just a few mere

scratches. Even though steel has many advantages,

rust is the true enemy here. You must keep all

surfaces thoroughly painted, primed, and ready to

avoid all types of rust.

Aluminum

Although rare in the normal cruising market,

aluminum is very popular with the construction of

top quality custom built yachts. If you are looking

for an aluminum constructed yacht, always make sure

that it wasn't constructed by an amateur yacht

builder - as this can cause major problems later on

down the road.

Wood

Even though it's the most traditional building

material, wood still has a lot to offer. If you get

the right kind of wood, it can last just as long as

any other type of material. The maintenence costs

are very high with wood, especially if you do your

own painting.

Ferro-cement

Concrete type boats have been around for a long

time. A cheap method of hull construction, it was

very popular in the 70's. If done properly, it

can be a very strong method of yacht construction.

Rigs

The most popular choices of yacht rigs include sloop,

cutter, and ketch - in that particular order. Sloop

has the virtue of simplicity, while ketch and cutter

rigs will split the sail plan into more easily

managed areas. A ketch rig can sail under mizzen

and headsail alone, while cutter rigs can offer a

simple twin headsail with downwind option.

Essentials versus desirables

Before you begin looking for a yacht, make a list

of what you must have then make a list of what would

be nice to have. There are many additions and add

ons you can get for yachts, although they can get

very expensive in a hurry.

When you shop for a yacht, always plan out your

budget before you even start looking. A nice yacht

can cost a lot of money, which is something you

may need to save up for. Yachts are great to sail

on, especially for those who have a lot of money

to spare.

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Cash Or Finance For Your Boat

(category: Buying-A-Boat, Word count: 308)
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Before you go out and purchase your boat, remember

that boating is a hobby and you shouldn't go

overboard with it. Unlike your house, boating

isn't really worth going into debt for. First

time buyers who aren't sure about boating should

always make sure they spend well within their

budget.

To get the most out of your boat, it's always a

better idea to scrape up your recreational dollars,

sell a few of your belongings, and simply save up

for a while. In the meantime, you should carefully

study the boating market. When you manage to

save up 3,500 - 25,000 dollars, go ahead and buy

the boat you want.

Whatever you do, make sure you don't spend all of

your money on the just the boat itself. When you

purchase the boat, you'll need to have enough

money for taxes, registration, storage, towing

insurance, gas, equipment, and even minor repairs

if your boat requires them.

When buying a boat, used or new, cash is always

better than financing. You can save money with

cash, as there are no finance charges. Financing

charges can get high, very high in fact if you

don't know a lot about it.

If you simply must finance your purchase, it's a

smart idea to use a home equity loan instead. This

way, it'll be tax deductible. Always be on the

lookout for boat show financing, and never, ever

use it. Several boat show financing ploys will

extend the loan out over the course of 10 - 15

years.

A new boater will either advance with boating or

get out of it all together. Most boaters don't keep

their boat for more than 10 years, which is reason

enough not to get an extended finance loan on your

boat.

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