How To Test A Boat

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If you think you’ve found the boat of your dreams,

it’s time to test it. Testing your boat is more

than just taking it for a test drive around the

harbor. You should look at everything closely, as

a professional boat tester would.

Sometimes, it can be hard to tell a top quality boat

from one that may have problems later on. To an

untrained eye, both can look good on the surface.

When you start to break everything down and give it

a careful inspection, you’ll be able to tell a great

boat from a not-so-great boat.

By opening up all doors and access plates, you can

get great insight on the the construction of the

boat. You should also stick your head into the

anchor locker of any boat you are considering to

buy, as if they’ve cut any corners you’ll normally

be able to see it here.

Looking into the anchor locker also lets you look

at the hull to deck joint. If there is light

coming from through, or if the fiberglass around

the joint can be seen through, it normally means

the boat has poor construction.

When you buy a boat, you should put it through a

rigorous visual inspection. It’s also equally

important to conduct a vigorous test on the water

as well. A private seller or dealer will

normally want to stack the deck, ensuring that

the boat will perform well.

Normally, this involves a near empty gas tank,

no gear or extra passengers, and keeping the

boat in sheltered water. Therefore, it’s up to

you to insist on a more realistic test. Think

of the test as an actual day out on the water,

and you’ll find out if the boat is indeed something

you should spend your money on.

During your water testing, you should determine

if the boat performs well and meets all of your

expectations. You should determine if the boat

travels at the right speeds, and whether or not it

is capable of doing everything that you plan to

do with it after you buy it.

When test driving the boat, you should put it

through all paces in open water, cutting waves at

all angles. If you plan to test a saltwater boat,

you should bring along a 5 gallon bucket and try

throwing some water onboard. Any boat you plan

to use offshore should quickly shed water through

the scuppers. Some boats will pool water in the

bow and drain slowly – which can be very dangerous

in rough waters.

If a seller or dealer balks at the mention of any

requests you have, simply find yourself another

dealer or another boat. There are plenty of great

quality boats available, ranging in prices. Make

sure to check everything very carefully before

you make any decisions.

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