Friday, July 3, 2009


After Your Boat Purchase

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!

Buying A Boat Trailer

A boat trailer is something you really can't go
wrong with, as it is a dual purpose device. It
provides a convenient way to store the boat, and
also allows you to explore new areas by taking
your boat down the road. Good trailers must
perform both duties equally as good.

Most people buying boats are into getting the
boat, and not the trailer. They are more than
willing to spend money on a boat, then end up
getting a cheap trailer. If you want the most
from boating, these tips will help you with
buying a trailer.

- The total weight of the boat, gear, and motor
should be in the mid range of trailer's carrying
capacity. You shouldn't pick a 2,500 capacity
trailer if you have a boat with the same weight.

- Go for larger diameter tires and wheels. The
larger tires will rotate less times per mile,
producing less heat and wear on the tread. The
wheel bearings will last much longer as well,
as they rotate less times per mile.

- You should look for trailers with "drive on"
capabilities. These drive on trailers will allow
you to drive the boat onto the trailer, close
enough to the winch so that you only need to
winch the boat up a few inches.

- Select trailer lights (for the highway) that
are protected and sealed against water.

- Pick your trailer based on the environment it
will be operating in. If you plan to launch in
salt water, you'll need a trailer for that purpose.
There are many types of trailers available, each
one designed for a specific type of boating.

Although most are protected against weather and
rust, you should always pick the one designed
for the type of terrain you will be using your
boat with. This way, you have no worries about
your trailer not doing the job it should be.

There are some trailers that include a spare tire,
which is an excellent investment for those who
plan to travel long distances. Even though it
can be hard to find trailer tires in the dark,
it's still great to have a spare if you get a
flat while you travel.

All in all, a boat trailer can save you a lot of
time and money. You can store your boat on your
trailer when it isn't be used, even take it to
other lakes or oceans. A trailer will open up
new roads for you and your boat - all you have to
do is find one that you need.

Buying A Cruising Yacht

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

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 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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Buying A Fishing Boat

Selecting the right fishing boat can be a real
challenge and also a lot of fun for someone who is
new to boating. If you haven't experienced buying
a boat before, it can also be a daunting task to
say the least.

Before you start looking, it's important to consider
the purpose of your fishing boat. A fishing boat
serves but one purpose - fishing. You have to
decide if you plan to fish in the ocean, or in other
bodies of water, such as lakes. This is very
important, as there are different types of fishing
boats available.

If you plan to use your fishing boat for ocean
cruising and overnight stays, it would be ideal to
buy one that has a hull. This design is meant for
rough waters, riding the waves, and providing more
comfort for anglers while they fish.

When you buy a fishing boat, you should know if it
includes a warranty. If it does, you should really
study the warranty as not all are the same. Buying
your boat from a dealer is always a smarter decision,
as dealers will provide repair services is the
boat is found to be defective.

It's also important when buying a fishing boat to
note if the boat is certified by the NMMA. This
agency will guarantee that the certification they
give to every boat passes the agency's standards
of excellence.

When it comes down to it, you should do more than
just look around when it comes to a fishing boat.
You should learn how to look for the best details
to ensure that your boat is worth the money. If
you take the time to look around, you'll find a boat
that you can truly be proud of.

Buying A Used Boat

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

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

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.

Buying Boat Insurance

Those of you who own boat will want to make sure
you get watercraft coverage. Often times, people
don't realize that they need this type of coverage
for their boats. There are many boat owners that
don't even realize this type of insurance is
even available.

You need boat insurance if you own a boat, it's
that simple. Before you buy boat insurance, here
are some things you simply must know.

- Many states now require that you carry watercraft
liability coverage. What this coverage does, is
protect you against any damage that you cause to
other people or their property with your boat. This
insurance will also cover you for vandalism, theft,
fire, stranding, sinking, and even collision. You
should always call your insurance agent and see
what's required with your state and what policies
they cover.

- There is also optional coverage that you should
really consider. One type of coverage that you
should strongly consider is Wreckage Removal. In
most areas, the removal of sunken or wrecked
boats is required by law, and the responsibility
of the owner to pay for the removal, which can
easily be very expensive.

Wreckage Removal coverage will pay these costs for
you. You should also consider adding coverage
that will pay for repairs and mechanical failure
as well, along with towing charges - should you
ever need to be towed back to the shore.

- Not all insurance companies cover everyone who
operates the boat. This is something you should
always ask about, find out who is covered when
operating the boat. There are several companies
that will only cover the owner of the boat. Make
sure that the insurance agent defines who is
covered when operating the boat.

Buying Inflatable Boats

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.

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.

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

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.

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.

Buying The Right Anchor

The right way to use an anchor is probably one of the
least understood areas of boating. If you are new to
boating, you may be thinking - how hard can it be? You
simply throw the anchor in the water, wait until it
hits the bottom, then tie it off, correct?

Anyone who is experienced with boating has probably
seen the types of problems that type of attitude can
cause. Just like everything else in boating, anchoring
requires the right equipment, careful thought, and a
lot of practice.

The starting point is selecting the right ground
tackle (the proper term for the anchor, line, chain,
shackles and swivels) for your boat and your style
of boating. There is no single anchor that will do
everything perfectly. Each style has its own unique
benefits and drawbacks, and each one performs best
under its given conditions.

The Danforth anchor
The Danforth anchor is one of the most popular,
being easily identified by its two long, sharp
pivoting flukes and long shank. The Danforth is
also a great choice for small to medium sized boats
as well. The anchor is light and easy to store,
digs well into sand and mud, and releases easy when
pulled from different directions.

The flukes on the Danforth pivot so that the shank
can be pulled at a more vertical angle. It's ideal
for fishing, which requires quick release and moving
around to different locations. If you fish overnight
a lot or travel to different areas of water you may
want to consider a different anchor, which will
hold better in changing conditions.

The plow anchor
The CQR, or plow anchor, features a single shaped
fluke that pivots at the end of the shank. This
design works well on many bottoms. The plow shank
pivots from side to side, while remaining parallel
to the fluke. This design also makes releasing a
snap when the anchor is pulled vertically.

The Bruce anchor
This anchor was originally created for offshore gas
and drilling rigs. The more scaled down version
of this anchor is popular with boaters. The anchor
holds fast, yet it will still come loose when
pulled vertically.

Always make sure to select an anchor system that
matches the length of your boat, displacement, and
the windage. If your looking for strength, elasticity
and durability, you should use only top quality
braided nylon anchor line.

It's very important that the size and length of
your anchor line is appropriate for your boat and
it's requirements. Small or medium boats should use
a section of galvanized steel chain between the
line and the anchor.

If you are new to boating, anchoring is something
you should become familiar with. As you use your
boat more, you'll pick up the proper anchoring
techniques. Or, if you prefer, you can always take
classes and learn everything you need to know about
anchoring from a qualified professional.

Buying The Right Fishing Boat

If you are planning to buy a boat, you'll first need
to evaluate what you plan to do with it. If your
primary purpose is fishing, then you'll want to
look into boats that are designed primarily for

If you happen to be a tournament fisherman, or hope
to be, then you probably wouldn't be happy with a
boat less than a 150 HP motor and shorter than 19
feet in length. Those of you who plan to fish in
really deep water on a regular basis will probably
need a 200 HP motor and at least 20 feet of length.

If you don't plan to tournament fish, but go after
bass fish instead, you'll want a 17 - 18 foot boat
with at least a 115 HP motor. This way, you can
enjoy the lake or the river.

Those of you who like to fish for species may want
to look for a more versatile boat with plenty of
walking around room, higher sides, and a different
seating arrangement. This type of boat is ideal
for several people, even a trip out with your
wife and kids.

If you plan to fish on occasion, but not enough
to invest in a boat, you may want to look at a
fish and ski model. This is a hybrid boat, crossing
between a bass boat and pleasure boat, and can
easily serve your purpose.

The biggest part of the buying process is getting
what you can afford. Luckily, there are many new
boats available, giving you several that fit your
budget. If you prefer, you can shop and find a used
boat that fits both your needs and budget.

Cash Or Finance For Your Boat

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

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

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

Choosing The Right Boat

The first thing you should know when choosing a boat
is that no single boat will do everything. If your
looking for a boat that inspires confidence, don't
expect it to shine in light air. Boats that are
exciting to sail on the weekends aren't the ideal boats
for a passage through the ocean.

You shouldn't expect to find quick acceleration and
load carrying capacity together with the same boat.
You can buy a boat now to race or fish, then sail
around later - as you can only do one or the other
with a specific type of boat.

The logic to choosing the right boat is determining
how you plan to use the boat. Think about why you
want to own a boat, what you plan to do with it, and
how you plan on using it.

For some, beauty is the first consideration. For
sail boats beauty is very important, as you'll
spend a majority of time floating and sailing around,
with many people looking at your sail boat. With
people looking at your vessel, you want to make sure
that it looks nothing short of amazing.

If you are planning to race instead of cruise, then
speed is your primary consideration. There are
many cruising sailors out there who simply can't be
happy unless their boats are moving very fast. The
ideal boat for speed demons are those that can cut
through the water, creating plenty of waves.

Fishermen on the other hand, want to look towards
fishing boats. Trackers and other boats that are
designed for fishing are ideal here. Fishing is one
of the most popular boat activities, meaning that
you'll have plenty of boats to select from.

When it comes down to it, selecting the right boat
is up to you and what you plan to do with it. Take
your time, weigh your options, and you'll have the
right boat before you know it.

Choosing The Right Engine

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

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.

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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