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Need to Repair Small Gouges Below Waterline; Costs of Repairs

Posted: Fri May 31, 2019 11:13 am
by GlenWhaler
Hi All. This is my first post. I am potentially new to boat ownership. A friend is offering me a 13-footer (apparently) from the 1970's. It seems to be in great condition with a tiny outboard engine.

There are two fingertip-size gouges on the bottom starboard side below the waterline. They dent in approximately a half-inch.

Q1: Should I be very concerned about these dents in the hull below the waterline

Q2: What is a range of cost to properly repair these dents below the waterline?

Q3: What is the fair market price for the boat shown below?

Thanks much for your help. I will now commence reading as many related posts as possible.

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Re: Repair of Small Gouges Below Waterline;

Posted: Fri May 31, 2019 12:53 pm
by jimh
A1: Any damage to the Unibond hull of a Boston Whaler that is below the waterline MUST be repaired. For advice add these articles to your reading list:

Until you make a permanent repair, cover the damage with high quality Gaffer's Tape and don't leave the boat in the water for more than a few days. If you have to leave the boat in the water for days and weeks at a time, cover the damage with some waterproof tape and then add Gaffer's Tape atop that.

A2: The cost to hire repairs like this to be performed by a professional fiberglass boat repair artisan would probably be at least $200 and possibly more, depending on location, the type of shop doing the work, how "yachty" the guy hired thinks his clientele are, and time of year.

Part of the Fun or Zen or Feng Shui of owning a 50-year-old fiberglass boat is being able to easily make small patch repairs to the boat in your driveway for about $25 in material costs.

The gouges probably came from hitting something on the trailer while loading or launching the boat.

Re: Need to Repair Small Gouges Below Waterline; Costs of Repairs

Posted: Fri May 31, 2019 12:57 pm
by jimh
Regarding fair price, a topic that would normally be discussed on its own in a separate thread, and not part of a discussion about making repairs:

A3: The 13-foot pre-c.1973 hull appears to be in nice condition, but real assessment cannot be made from photographs. The hull is probably worth $500 to $1,000.

The engine has considerable value, depending on its age and condition. I looks newer than c.1970. The engine could be worth $500 to $1,000.

The engine is nicely rigged with remote controls and remote steering. These items are worth somewhere between $500 to $1,000.

The trailer also has value. It could be worth $300 to $600.

Thus a fair value might be anywhere between $1,800 to $3,600. It all depends on the present condition of everything and general age of things besides the hull. The more accessories in the deal the better the deal gets, in most instances. Location and time of year also affect prices. How fast the seller wants to see the boat sold is another influence. If both parties in the sale are friends, all figures are subject to substantial change from fair-market prices. See my article on this topic:

Buying Classic Boston Whaler Boats

There was a time about 25-years ago that a rig like this would sell for $1,200 in a local newspaper Sunday classified to the guy who got the paper on Saturday night and called right away. Today this boat might be sold to an unscrupulous neighbor for $300 by a widow who wanted to get her late husband's stuff out of the garage. Otherwise, the prices are about what I mention above.

Re: Need to Repair Small Gouges Below Waterline; Costs of Repairs

Posted: Fri May 31, 2019 1:57 pm
by GlenWhaler
Thank you Jim. I appreciate the guidance and information. I look forward to learning more as a boat owner.

Re: Need to Repair Small Gouges Below Waterline; Costs of Repairs

Posted: Fri May 31, 2019 5:16 pm
by jimh
I learn something new about boating every time I go boating. It is a never-ending learning experience--and a lot of fun.

Re: Need to Repair Small Gouges Below Waterline; Costs of Repairs

Posted: Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:11 am
by Oldslowandugly
That's a great looking boat. Perfect for fishing.

Since the holes are small I would fix them with some white Marine Tex. That is a very good brand of epoxy that once dried is totally waterproof.

Clean out around the holes and make sure the area is totally dry. Use a hand held hair dryer if necessary.

Follow the directions and mix the Marine Tex and apply.

If the holes are deep you can fill them in increments until flush with the surface. Try to get some behind the outer hard fiberglass layer for support.

Once fully cured you sand it smooth. Being white it will blend in fairly well with the hull.