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Author Topic:   wife on whaler 87 montauk 17'
kittibutt posted 06-30-2002 09:39 PM ET (US)   Profile for kittibutt   Send Email to kittibutt  
My husband is thinking of buying an 87 Montauk 17 footer in the morning. I'm concerned that the steering is rusty and the gas tank is in the center console (which was built to replace the original wooden console) and there are some holes in the hull, small ones, but I'm concerned about water getting in and damaging the hull - the seller says that the holes are puttied up, the steering just needs grease and the gas tank is in a seperate place from the battery, which would be the main reason to be concerned about having the tank in the console. I know a lot more about cars than boats, but a gas tank in the center console just sounds dangerous to me. Should I try to talk him out of this boat? The price isn't bad, but I don't want him going up in flames to save a few bucks! Thanks very much for any responses.
JBCornwell posted 06-30-2002 10:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for JBCornwell  Send Email to JBCornwell     
Hi, Kittibutt.

The '87 Montauk did not have a wooden console. It usually mounted the fuel tank(s) under the reversible pilot seat. Does it have that?

I don't think:
1. That it is a Montauk your husband is looking at.

2. That "puttied up" holes in the hull are repaired unless they are simply screw holes.

3. That it is certain that it is a Boston Whaler.

If it is not VERY cheap, and your husband is not prepared to do a complete restoration, pass it up.

It may be a good deal for someone who knows his(her) Whalers, but for nobody else.

Red sky at night. . .
JB :)

Highwater posted 07-01-2002 08:13 AM ET (US)     Profile for Highwater    
I think maybe it is a good deal, but you need to clarify a few things first. How does the owner know that the original console was made of wood? How does he/she know that the boat is a 1987 model? Either it was not made out of wood or it is older than that or it is not a Boston Whaler. You need to seek clarification on this point.

The location of the fuel is not significant as long as the tank can ventilate. The quality of the tank is more important than its location. What is the tank made of? Is a red plastic tank(i.e., an inexpensive Tempo) or is it a desert tan fiberglass tank (i.e., an expensive Pate)? What size is the tank? 6 gallons? 12 gallons? 27 gallons?

When you say that there are holes in the hull do you mean holes all the way through the hull of the boat or do you mean that inside the boat there are screw holes in the gel coat and fiberglass. The latter is not a big deal. It is possible for the interior foam to absorb water but this usually only occurs on older Whalers that have been abused. Otherwise, the foam does not absorb water. A little putty (or 3Ms 4200 or 5200) is an easy and effective fix, or--if you want to enhance the beauty of your boat--it not a big deal to repair the screw holes with epoxy and gel coat. You can learn how to do it by reading old posts in this forum!

There are also lots of posts about freeing up the steering. (Do you know how to search for posts that more than 10 days old?) Even if you have to put in a new steering cable, that is not expensive or difficult to do.

But you do not mention the price so it is difficult to say for sure if it is a good deal. Post the price and send JB a photo and you may get more encouragement from our local experts.

Best of luck!


jimh posted 07-01-2002 08:46 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
An 1987 MONTAUK would have a beautiful molded console trimmed with teak, and a superb Reversible Pilot Seat, beneath which the fuel tanks would be located.

Since the boat you describes seems to have neither, I would carefully verify that it is indeed a MONTAUK.

It would be unimaginable that someone would throw out either the original console or seat of a MONTAUK. If they did, they have really thrown out the "Montauk" part of the boat, and it is just a 17-foot Whaler hull with some home-brew components.

Bigshot posted 07-01-2002 09:51 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Be very scared!

Is the hull blue inside or white/tan?

Does the hull have a triangle front hatch or a rectangle?

What kind of seat?

kittibutt posted 07-01-2002 11:06 AM ET (US)     Profile for kittibutt  Send Email to kittibutt     
Thank you very much for your replies. The original console was actually trimmed with teak, not "wooden" as I wrote earlier - i got that a bit wrong. The owner says he replaced it because the wood was damaged. The price is about $6,200. The engine is a rebuilt 1987 88 evinrude. It has a white/tan hull and a triangle hatch. Is that better than the blue/white hull?
Bigshot posted 07-01-2002 02:57 PM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Actually that sounds like a pretty darn good deal. The rectangle hatch means pre 76 or smirkless design. the triangle is the newer Montauk design. That engine is a great engine. Not the quietest or gas efficient but will run like a scalded dog. The steering cable is $ biggie. The holes if filled are nothing. Look more for soft spots in the floor(you'll notice them) and large cracks, not minor cosmetic ones but ones you can see the webbing underneath....they are bad....very bad. Sounds like a nice boat if upkept.
kittibutt posted 07-01-2002 08:30 PM ET (US)     Profile for kittibutt  Send Email to kittibutt     
Thank you very much for your help. I did find more about steering and tank placement by searching the forums too. I told my husband that I think that one of the best things about his deciding to buy a Boston Whaler this time was the existence of this forum! More input is welcome!
Highwater posted 07-01-2002 10:40 PM ET (US)     Profile for Highwater    
Bigshot, your comments about it being so bad to have cracks where you can see the fiberglass underneath has me worried. The 15' that I recently bought has lots of cracks in the gelcoat, and I was under the asumption that I could media blast it and re-gelcoat it. Someday. I thought that I could still use it as is for now. Just cosmetic cracks. Right? Maybe I should send you a picture....
chrisrich posted 07-01-2002 11:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for chrisrich  Send Email to chrisrich     
I always 'like" when the seller has a list of things wrong with the boat, and their always minor, and easy, and cheap.
My personal opinion is to stay away from a sales pitch like this.
Spend the extra $$$ and get something nice.
Otherwise-you;ll probably never get a chance to get to enjoy the baot.
Good luck.

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