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  • A Newbie Thinking About Buying a Boat

    I was hoping I could get some insight and opinions on a boat I'm thinking about buying: 26ft Campion (Cabin, bathroom, sink, stove) Chevy 350 outboard w/ 1300 hrs. Newly rebuilt outdrive 9.9 HP kicker Basically, the wife and I want a boat that we can do some fishing, and haul up some crab pots with. We'd prefer something with a cabin, because it's more comfortable but we're both somewhat new to boating. The guy is selling it for $4800. Any opinions that people could share. Any experience with the Chevy 350 engine? I know I'll have to have it hauled/winterized/etc. I'm willing to do some work, but I don't want it to become a money pit.

  • #2
    Any boat you buy, even a brand new one is a money pit! There is an expression that goes...........If you want to find out if you will enjoy baoting in Alaska go stand in the cold shower and rip up $100 bills. If you like that then you will like boating!
    Seriously, for the boat you described for that small amount of money I would expect to put many thousands of dollars into it the next couple of years. But it is still cheaper than buying a new one.

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    • #3
      Theres a reason that many people call a boat. a hole in the water that you throw money into! Those older boats scare me to death as well as the low price. The best advice I can give you is to spend the money and have a reputable boat mechanic or boat owner and go through it with a fine tooth comb. That $4800 could easily be $9,600 or $14,400 by the time your done with it. Trust me I have seen it. Once your into it, your into it!

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      • #4
        BO.A.T

        Borrow another Thousand.

        You will spend money on it. With gas prices up this summer for me I had to take people out to make it worth a trip. Don't get me wrong I love taking people out, but if they did not chip in I would be in the poor house.
        Sit down and think on how much you are going to use it. up keep is a big thing. If you stay ontop of it then you will avoid big problems later.
        Living the Alaskan Dream
        Gary Keller
        Anchorage, AK

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        • #5
          I've not been out on a Campion, but a couple of guys on another forum I frequented had them and liked them. Rode well, and did allright in a moderate sea. The 350 chevy has been a back bone of marine engines for years, probably one of the most common, also called a 5.7 liter. You didn't say what the year was, but for that price, probably older. Most likely a carburated, non-electronic ignition. Life expectancy for a well maintained marine gas engine is around 2000hrs. Engines that aren't maintained or are abused can puke at 100hrs, good care and luck can get you 3000 hrs or more. The risers, heat exchangers and manifolds have to be replaced with some frequency to avoid water intrusion in the engine, salt water especially. Water in the engines is a killer. A new long block for a 350 is around $7000 if I remember right. It's not a car engine, closer to a truck engine cam, and has certain parts that are "marinized", mostly gaskets and seals, water pump. Bolt-ons to the engine (starters, carbs,water pumps,fuel pumps) are marine specific parts, and auto parts cannot be used for replacements.
          The outdrives need to be serviced every year and re-sealed and or rebuilt every five years or so, once again, an ounce of prevetion.
          Probably the biggest thing on an older boat is the condition of the hull. Most everything else can be taken care of with a little money, some sweat and a basic knowledge of mechanics, but a rotted transom or rotten stringers is a killer most nobody wants to take on.
          Most of the other systems onboard are simple (electrical, pumps,water, fuel), but the older the boat, the more likely those systems will eventualy need some attention.
          Boats , especially salt-water boats live in a harsh enviroment, and need constant attention to slow the aging process. I hear people all the time say "I'm going to buy a new boat so I don't have to do anything to it". Problem is they don't do "anything" and after a few years things start crapping out, and they find they have an engine which started taking in a little water last year, and now is siezed up. The repair bills are about half the value of their "new" boat, and re-sale value has taken a big hit. If it floats, it needs maintanence.

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          • #6
            go stand in the cold shower and rip up $100 bills. If you like that then you will like boating!
            I've never seen it put better.

            Comment


            • #7
              If you don't know boats

              If you don't know boats, I would take it to someone who does. A few $ now could save you $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ later on.
              The person I thrust is Dave @ Heavy Weather Boats in Anchorage.

              Comment


              • #8
                B-rake O-ut A-nother T-housand.
                2005 20' Weldcraft Sabre XL 350 MP
                SD309 AT
                2009 Polaris Dragon 800 163
                Custom Mod's

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by alskntwnsfn View Post
                  I was hoping I could get some insight and opinions on a boat I'm thinking about buying: 26ft Campion (Cabin, bathroom, sink, stove) Chevy 350 outboard w/ 1300 hrs. Newly rebuilt outdrive 9.9 HP kicker Basically, the wife and I want a boat that we can do some fishing, and haul up some crab pots with. We'd prefer something with a cabin, because it's more comfortable but we're both somewhat new to boating. The guy is selling it for $4800. Any opinions that people could share. Any experience with the Chevy 350 engine? I know I'll have to have it hauled/winterized/etc. I'm willing to do some work, but I don't want it to become a money pit.
                  I'd budget in a new engine right away. Best to have it replaced now in the winter, and be ready for break up. At a bare minimum, replace the exhaust manifolds and risers.

                  Also, just a technical point, but it not a Chevy 350 'outboard', but rather a chevy 350 inboard/outdrive, or simply I/O. Outboards are big versions of your Honda kicker. A straight inboard would be your chevy with a straight prop shaft angling aft and down going outside the hull. The prop would be at the end and you'd have a rudder for steering.

                  If it doesn't have a trailer, be prepared for sticker shock there, as a new trailer for that boat would run around $4,000. Crazy high for something without an engine.

                  Your starting out exactly were I did about 10 years ago. To be honest, I won't buy another gas powered I/O boat. If it's big enough for inboard engines, it's big enough for a diesel. Anything smaller benefits from running an outboard, in that they don't take up valuable room in the boat, have fewer parts, and generally are more reliable (these days) than a gas inboard. Plus they're safer, as there are no gas fumes in the bilge.

                  But, I did have some fun with my older gas I/O, and a guy has to start somewhere. Best wishes and I hope you buy something and enjoy it.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    What is that old expression ... ... ?

                    The two happiest days in a boat owners life:

                    #1. The day you buy your boat

                    #2. The day you sell your boat

                    -- Gambler

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I'd take what's been said and reread it all. Good advice. You will spend alot more money then you plan no matter what size or age you decide on. I especially like the comment " a boat is a hole in the water you throw money into", sad trueth.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Gambler View Post
                        The two happiest days in a boat owners life:

                        #1. The day you buy your boat

                        #2. The day you sell your boat

                        -- Gambler
                        You got a funny bone in you. What how do you know about #2? Did you get rid of your boat?
                        Living the Alaskan Dream
                        Gary Keller
                        Anchorage, AK

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Boats

                          My buddy got a great "deal" on a Boston Whaler two weeks ago. He paid $3,000 and, yep, he's replacing the engine. The fella who he bought it from had installed the wrong engine and had everything booby-trapped and jerry-rigged. He's out $8,000-$10,000. Oh, and there is a lein on the trailer for $3,500!

                          Yea, I'd be careful. Take it to someone and have it looked over. My buddy did this about 3 days AFTER he bought it. Oops.

                          Good Luck,
                          Tim

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            not quite that 'lucky'

                            Originally posted by Alaska Gray View Post
                            You got a funny bone in you. What how do you know about #2? Did you get rid of your boat?

                            LoL! In fact, I think I've gone the other direction and decided to give it AT LEAST another summer

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Gambler View Post
                              LoL! In fact, I think I've gone the other direction and decided to give it AT LEAST another summer

                              Thats the way to go. Gas prices are going down so have fun with it now. Does your boat have a bathroom in it?

                              Get with me on the bear hunt in the spring. I work some of the days you will be out there.

                              One last thing Pm if you would like to do a party goat hunt?
                              Living the Alaskan Dream
                              Gary Keller
                              Anchorage, AK

                              Comment

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