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half a can
02-02-2013, 05:08 AM
I have been looking for an 87-89 Prostar for a few weeks and finally found an 89. The interior and exterior are both in immaculate shape - almost too good of shape for a 24 year old boat. The motor has just under 500 hours, and the last registration sticker is from 2005. The guy selling it has never ran the boat, he traded a truck for it and is now looking to sell the boat since he has 2 others already. He claims the boat was previously owned by a boat mechanic and was ran (with no valid registration) for a couple of weeks at the end of the season.

My question is - what should I check on the motor and tranny? I will do a test drive and a compression check. Is there anything else to look for with a boat that has been sitting for potentially 8 years? The motor and bilge were just as clean as the rest of the boat and there was no rust anywhere. I hate to pass up an oppurtunity at such a well preserved boat, but am afraid of what is in the motor with it sitting for so long. Thanks for the help.

Cloaked
02-02-2013, 06:59 AM
I have been looking for an 87-89 Prostar for a few weeks and finally found an 89. The interior and exterior are both in immaculate shape - almost too good of shape for a 24 year old boat. The motor has just under 500 hours, and the last registration sticker is from 2005. The guy selling it has never ran the boat, he traded a truck for it and is now looking to sell the boat since he has 2 others already. He claims the boat was previously owned by a boat mechanic and was ran (with no valid registration) for a couple of weeks at the end of the season.

My question is - what should I check on the motor and tranny? I will do a test drive and a compression check. Is there anything else to look for with a boat that has been sitting for potentially 8 years? The motor and bilge were just as clean as the rest of the boat and there was no rust anywhere. I hate to pass up an oppurtunity at such a well preserved boat, but am afraid of what is in the motor with it sitting for so long. Thanks for the help.Depending on geographical location of the boat; leaks from cracks in the engine block or heads from poor or no winterization. Salt water use from a coastal state or coastal proximity. Salt or brackish water is not my preference of legacy use. Worse case with this deal is that you drop in a new or rebuilt engine.
Look at the engine oil (on the stick) for water in the oil (crack somewhere). Look at the transmission fluid in the same way.
Magnet to check for JB Weld repairs (typically from crack repair from poor winterization). Magnet doesn't stick? Something else is there. I usually check each head for this type fake repair.
Carb performance, starting of ease or not when engine is hot. Gasket leaks. Don't pay a ton of money for a great deal. You can sink another $5K into a boat easily enough on top of the 'great deal' price if it's trashed out. All sunken costs too.

Slipping or clunky transmission performance. Smell the fluid for a burnt smell or water contamination.

On and on and on...

next!

.

mustangtexas
02-02-2013, 07:09 AM
The first thing I would do is pull the plugs and advance the engine by hand with a wrench on the crank. A stuck or nearly stuck piston could have catastrophic results even with a starter motor. If you have or can get a scope, inspect the cylinders through the plug holes for rust. All can look great from the outside but bad on the inside. Not a deal breaker if fixed.

Double D
02-02-2013, 10:30 AM
I know a guy on here who is about to sell a garage queen 88 ProStar 190, blue and cream. Keep your eyes open.

Lumbergh
02-02-2013, 11:06 AM
... You can sink another $5K into a boat easily enough on top of the 'great deal' price if it's trashed out. All sunken costs too.



The thing is, you can sink $5k into a well preserved boat too. All sunken costs. Now alot of that can be "upgrades" if you will, but there is great deal of stuff that "can be/needs to be" replaced on a 20+ year old boat.

Not everyone has the proper level of anal retentiveness (AKA MCOCD).

After all, you will be out on the water with your family in this thing. You don't want it to break down / and or sink with you on it.

The longer you plan to/decide to hold onto any boat (toy), the longer the costs amortize out as well. As the sage TMMC pointed out recently, we all walk the line on balancing present "needs" and future resale.

My .02

Keeping in mind that a brand new MC 190/197 is well north of $60k new. Its all relative in my mind.

jhall0711
02-02-2013, 12:34 PM
I know a guy on here who is about to sell a garage queen 88 ProStar 190, blue and cream. Keep your eyes open.

Ill second that.... The boat he refers to is mint....Almost as clean as mine....:D:D

Depends on where your located though as this boat will be in Ohio.

mikeg205
02-02-2013, 12:59 PM
I have been looking for an 87-89 Prostar for a few weeks and finally found an 89. The interior and exterior are both in immaculate shape - almost too good of shape for a 24 year old boat. The motor has just under 500 hours, and the last registration sticker is from 2005. The guy selling it has never ran the boat, he traded a truck for it and is now looking to sell the boat since he has 2 others already. He claims the boat was previously owned by a boat mechanic and was ran (with no valid registration) for a couple of weeks at the end of the season.

My question is - what should I check on the motor and tranny? I will do a test drive and a compression check. Is there anything else to look for with a boat that has been sitting for potentially 8 years? The motor and bilge were just as clean as the rest of the boat and there was no rust anywhere. I hate to pass up an oppurtunity at such a well preserved boat, but am afraid of what is in the motor with it sitting for so long. Thanks for the help.

ding..ding...you're almost too good says it all.... show us pictures and and let's hear her run.

8 years sitting around...seals are probably in poor shape. Get a 5 gallon bucket and run it. When was the fluid in the tranny changed last.

I can just imagine the crud sludge in the motor/tranny from just sitting for 8 years. I took apart my 2 HP - has't ran for 5 years - couldn't believe the crap that came out... cleaned it up put new gaskets in and got it running.

Good news it's carbed so no ECU to deal with. Pictures, price... and what's your repair/restrore/rennovate dollar threshold once you buy it. How much can you fix yourself.

thatsmrmastercraft
02-02-2013, 04:16 PM
Rubber parts will be the most affected from sitting. Engine and transmission seals, valve cover gaskets. A carb rebuild should be factored in as well as removing the fuel tank for a cleaning. Your decision should factor in whether or not you can do this work yourself, or if you have to take it in to the shop for work. This really sounds best purchased by someone who can do the work themselves.

thatsmrmastercraft
02-02-2013, 04:19 PM
The thing is, you can sink $5k into a well preserved boat too. All sunken costs. Now alot of that can be "upgrades" if you will, but there is great deal of stuff that "can be/needs to be" replaced on a 20+ year old boat.

Not everyone has the proper level of anal retentiveness (AKA MCOCD).

After all, you will be out on the water with your family in this thing. You don't want it to break down / and or sink with you on it.

The longer you plan to/decide to hold onto any boat (toy), the longer the costs amortize out as well. As the sage TMMC pointed out recently, we all walk the line on balancing present "needs" and future resale.

My .02

Keeping in mind that a brand new MC 190/197 is well north of $60k new. Its all relative in my mind.

I've been called a lot of things, most of which would be censored here, but I think this is the first time I have been called sage. :rolleyes:

reftech
02-02-2013, 06:17 PM
Do you have pics of the boat? Please keep us posted! If u end up passing on it I would be interested if the price is right. I'm always up for another project!

half a can
02-03-2013, 01:38 PM
Here are some pics (i hope). Thanks for all the replys. I'm pretty mechanical - I've rebuilt my snowmobile a couple times and work on friends sleds. I also work on a couple of outboards I own, and my 04 Cummins. Between good websites like this one, manuals, and YouTube, I'm pretty confident I can figure out and repair most issues. The guy wants what I feel is a premium for the boat, so I need to make sure there are minimal issues with the drivetrain. He is wanting $6,800, and I believe he will be fairly firm on that price. NADA average retail is around $5,100. In looking at other adds across the country and judging from some of the crap out there, I don't think his price is too far out of line considering the condition, if the motor checks out to be in the same condition. What do you guys feel on the prices? I know there are several of these boats in the area in what I consider "trashed" condition that are asking for $7k. Other than some staining on the carpet and no decals on the transom, this one really looks like brand new. Thanks again for the help!

Double D
02-03-2013, 01:57 PM
Boat looks clean but with sitting there are concerns. Also, as I said earlier, there will be a similar boat on the market here soon that there would be no concerns and I dont think it would be a whole bunch more money. I can put you in contact with the future seller if you want. Just PM me.

mikeg205
02-03-2013, 02:03 PM
pop the risers off see if they are still clear. compression test. all that good stuff... My fear would be she would check out fine - then when she's under load and hot - that's when the leaks will come.

Double D may have a better boat for ya.... or something to bargain with....

mikeg205
02-03-2013, 02:04 PM
I've been called a lot of things, most of which would be censored here, but I think this is the first time I have been called sage. :rolleyes:

sage....maybe it was an auto-correct mishap... ;)

reftech
02-03-2013, 05:00 PM
I don't know what area you're from but ultimately it's gonna come down to what you're comfortable paying for the boat.it looks to be in decent condition cosmetically but the engine is a big deal. I would do a compression check and would definitely have to test drive it before paying the 6800 asking price. That is at the upper end of the scale and the boat needs to be in very good running condition for that. There are two ps190's in my area now one is a powerslot with 326 hours and u could pick it up for 5800.the other is a 1:1 that needs some interior work but runs extremely well with 600 hours for 4500. I would ensure that the boat runs and is in good mechanical condition and then I would make him an offer that you're comfortable with. Just my 2 cents

jhall0711
02-03-2013, 05:05 PM
If the motor checks out that boat is priced pretty close. I would try to haggle a bit over the carpet but it looks pretty dang clean. I have a very similar boat and it was pristine at purchase. And I will tell you I paid more than 6800.... Not by much though and like I said mine needed nothing.

mikeg205
02-03-2013, 05:34 PM
7K for this boat makes me a happy camper with my young 1995 - that's why we love our MC's

MikeyOrange88
02-05-2013, 01:27 PM
With an interior that is in as good shape as that one appears to be, you're already ahead of the game since a big chunk of change can be dropped on a new interior. Carpet is a much less costly item to upgrade and can be DIY. Just depends on taking a chance that you won't be surprised with some major motor repairs. If you could rule out salt-water use and any major engine issues, it may be worth it. Heck, I've seen folks buying 'project' boats on this forum for several thousand and then having to completely refurbish every aspect of them, ie. hull, interior, motor, and transmission when clearly the amount spent could never be recovered when sold, and taking a heck alot of effort along the way (not that there is anything wrong with that!). I've got an '88 with identical motor (owned for 15 years). It has been very durable and trustworthy. If you wait long enough, someone else may make the decision for you though.

JohnE
02-05-2013, 02:32 PM
Ha, I was trying to figure out who TMMC is.....

d2jp
02-05-2013, 02:59 PM
I would suggest a test drive and/or test ski/board behind the boat. I would also try and do this with the boat 'cold' as in not started before you arrive. Look/listen for the obvious 'bad signs' - hard starting, excess smoking, water in the bilge after running, temp should stay between 140-180 depending upon t'stat, listen for strange noises, etc. Compression test wouldn't hurt, but with no obvious signs of trouble on a good test drive not sure I'd demand it. I would also suggest inspecting the running gear - tracking fins, rudder, shaft and condition of the hull in general. Any signs of damage, bent fins, hull cracking (including spider cracks), or gel coat repair I'd be worried.
That boat is missing the rear decals - seems odd for everything else to be so pristine. Can't tell but also looks to have pinstripe on side removed(between gel colors).
IMO - these boats are bullet-proof, pretty simple machines. If it appears to be in good mechanical condition, and a test drive checks out - you like the boat, go for it. I'd rather spend $6800 on a boat I can enjoy now. Be sure and check the condition of the tires. Lots of stories on here on tire blowouts on low-mileage tires. Wheel bearings, and all the usual trailer things should be inspected as well. My boat has a single axle trailer, the tandem might be worth a little more too, not sure. If the test drive throws up some red flags either delve further into the issues and negotiate the price or walk away, there are lots of good MC out there! Good Luck!

Thrall
02-18-2013, 11:14 AM
If it runs good, buy it! Not too many old boats in that kind of condition.
Check for the obvious, water in oil, trans and other basic mechanical stuff, but if you're mechanically inclined, not much easier than this to work on.
If $7k is what your budget is, then this is about the best example of what to spend it on IMO.
Doesn't matter if it's a 5 year old or 25 year old MC really as far as parts and maint go as long as both are well maintained. I would not be concerned with the old engine as long as it was properly put up for the 7 years it sat. You may be on the hook for some little stuf like rebuilding the carb, fuel pump, etc. When I bought my 06 in favor of my 96 model, I put just as much work into it, probably more, but the new one has more bells and whistles.

Double D
02-18-2013, 11:19 AM
Half a Can, here is that boat I was referring too. Hot off the presses!!

http://akroncanton.craigslist.org/boa/3624859591.html

half a can
02-18-2013, 05:42 PM
Thanks Double D. I actually ended up buying the boat and picking it up last Friday. Everything checked out good. I got a little more off the price, but ended up dumping the savings into new tires so I could make it home. After closer inspection, it appears like the boat sat in the water for a while. I noticed right behind the trailer wheel well, a nasty brown water line that had acid wash streaks in it. I guess that explains why the boat has no pinstriping and no transom sticker. I found this after I got the boat home and had to wash it due to my truck has an oil leak that ended up blowing oil all over the boat. The boat and trailer do need a few minor things like brakes, no running lights, pinstriping, carpet, and a stereo upgrade (it still has a *****in' casset deck with equalizer installed under the dash that even came with it's own Bon Jovi tape!). Oh well - I need something to do anyway since the snow kindof sucks right now.

Thanks again to everyone for all the advice!