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Old 08-13-2005, 04:30 PM
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Default dropped boat off the trailer today launching

Was on a seatrail contemplating the purchase of a 99 seapro 235cc w/ a 225 suzuki 2stroke on armstrong bracket.

The broker is with me, not the owner (out of town), used the new armada to tow to a 2 slip ramp here on the obx. pretty steep 7 degree ramp. the broker unhooks the strap and safety chain, says this is how he has been doing it for 5 years now. I say no, I'd rather do it hooked up and float the boat off, the ramp is deep enough.

Broker rather sarcastically hooks just the winch back up rather flippantly and gives me the we'll do it your way look, but the boat is hooked up I thought and I back down the ramp, I hear a noise and press the brakes , voila, BOAT COMES OFF THE TRAILER with about 2 feet short of the water.

Thankfully, motor is trimmed up and on the bracket, boat slides down the ramp, into the water. I curse, get out of the truck and look, yell We're pulling it out to the broker while the wife watches.

Back it down, worried at this point it's gonna sink because there's a cup sized pile of gelcoat and fiberglass on the ramp, hook it up, pull it out and check the bilge. NO cracks in the areas that I can see, bilge is as dry as when we left the brokerage lot. Inspect the hull a good 30 minutes, look at the lower unit and nothing so bad. The only damage I can ascertain is a 3" wear area on the bottom of the transom/hull right whereit rises up. The accident area wiped off all 3 layers of woven roven an area about the size of a human adult hand.
My question: who do I blame. I obviously didn't have insurance, because the boat is not owned by me, he has a deposit subject to a seatrial and compression check on the motor. He said he'd knock $500 off the price to cover the cost of materials, because he knows I can work with fiberglass, I used to work at a carolina sportfishing company in wanchese. I estimate (if there are no cracks in nthe transom caused by the stress that may develop down the road) cost of materials to be about $500. He's offered to lower the price that much and have me do the work, because I'd rather do the work anyways so I know it's done right.

We did put the boat in the water and sea trial it anyways, watching the bilge the whole time, and there was no water intrusion into the bilge, however the area needs to be repaired so it doesn't rot the glass and substrate out over time. I can do this and it won't be that much of a hasssle, but what about stress cracks 2 years down the road because it got wacked so hard?

Obviously the broker doesn't want the owner to get involved because that's an insurance issue and will cause him higher rates.

Do i ask for my check back and walk, due to the accident? or have the repair done by a boat shop and have it surveyed afterwards? Fix the boat and watch the area for any other signs of damage?

By the way, the broker is a really nice guy, has been above average with customer service, answering questions and generally helpful with all my questions and such. Even drove an hour to meet us for a seatrial on saturday when it was unconvenient for him and convenient for us.

The boat is way below NADA value, by 20%. it runs good, is the style i want and has the features I need.
It's a good boat. Price is right also.

Opinions here are greatly appreciated. This ties well with the how do you launch your boat thread a few days back.
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Old 08-13-2005, 04:35 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

WALK AWAY!!!

You will sleep more soundly doing so....
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Old 08-13-2005, 04:46 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

Ouch, tough call but I wouldn't buy that boat now. That's just me, I'm particular but if you bounced it onto concrete from a height of 1-2' chances are you did some unseen damage.

That's why the broker has insurance.
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Old 08-13-2005, 04:50 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

Boats get a much harder pouniding over their lifetime of crashing around the ocean/lakes that they are driven on. Patch the scrape and enjoy the great buy!

Steve
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Old 08-13-2005, 05:19 PM
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Default RE: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

The boat was in the water appx 35 minutes today, we didn't want to push the luck of her, I had it to 29 mph.

I called my dad, an electrical engineer for northrop grumman newport news for 35 years and a boat owner for 10, to ask him his opinion. I agree with the last post where the hull faces that kind of stress over the course of it's life, just not specifically on that particular point, most stress is distributed evenly over the hull, even when it lands after being airborne, the stress is greater but distributed more evenly.

By the way, dad's advise is fix it right and monitor closely while underway, install 2 rule 3700 pumps for redundancy on a seperate circuit right over the bilge just to be safe. Was gonna do that anyways, before this fiasco, because the main reason boats swamp and capsize = taking one medium wave over the stern (half swamped) and not being able to remove the water before the next smaller wave comes over. Water in the bilge is no good.
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Old 08-13-2005, 05:51 PM
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Default RE: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

Walk!

You are making up reasons to continue the deal. Check your emotions. We all do it. Price of gas will provide a lot of opportunities going forward.
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Old 08-13-2005, 05:54 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

Sound's more like a $1000 leverage point to me. You buy, you fix, the owner doesn't have to know and the broker can wash his hand's.

Win--Win deal.
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Old 08-13-2005, 05:58 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

I, myself, would walk away and keep searching. Just knowing what happened would bother me. And it would be tough enjoying a boat, paying $3.00 a gallon for fuel, while the entire time staring at the bilge and expecting the worst. Tough first day out there kid.
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Old 08-13-2005, 06:01 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

I would call the factory and find out how many layers of woven roving are at this point in the transom bottom junction--probably substantial, since the transom/hull bottom overlap--but if you have taken 3 layers of roving off by abrasion, I wonder if there is some stress cracking deeper below this area. It may not be apparent from inside, but with the abraded glass not visiable from exterior.

It is really the resposibility of the broker--any damage caused at sea trial. Many brokers will not sea trial without the owner present. I suspect that the broker has insurance--and it might not go back to the owner's insurance--but that the broker does not want to involve his insurance (and the $500 is less than his deductable). How is the broker going to explain the damage to the boat's owner?

How badly do you want this boat? My guess is that with a good epoxy/glass repair that the boat will be fine--but before the repair I would grind out enough to see how much fracture of the glass is beneath the superficial damage. I probably would ask for $1,000 off, and do the repair myself.
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Old 08-13-2005, 06:05 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

Ouch, I recently had a similar experinece see thread "2 trailering accidents this week". Again, "experts" who leave bow line off for launch. I'll never let anyone talk me into that again. I was lucky and made the water just grinding up my skeg a little.

Good Luck whatever you do. I'd be a little leary. The 'discount" is to cover repairs for a "best case scenario". That is the damage you see and assumes there will never be anything more resulting from the accident. If you do have any long term problems then it's not such a good deal and you'd have a hard time unloading it without taking a bath. Consider your options carefully.


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Old 08-13-2005, 06:23 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

If the price is right,go for it!
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Old 08-13-2005, 06:32 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

I agree with warthog. That sounds like a $500 for parts + $500 for your labor discount to me. Otherwise the broker will have to have the repair made for a grand or explain to the owner what a dip sh!t he is.
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Old 08-13-2005, 07:17 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

Shouldn't the brokers insurance cover this for the owner??
He accepted the responsibility to sea trial the boat.
He really becomes the "dealer" and you the customer.
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Old 08-13-2005, 07:41 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

the only time I dropped a boat at the ramp was a full roller trailer and a 21' searay with the strap hook and safety chain OFF . Never did that again. I'd forget the boat & motor combo until the figue out why. Capt Joe
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Old 08-13-2005, 08:21 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

I know I couldn't be comfortable owning that boat. Watching the bilage all the time checking the damage after every trip. I would already be taking the fun out of boating, and gas prices is already doing that now.

I couldn't do it.

Brian
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Old 08-13-2005, 08:48 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

I would be the smart, nice guy and consumate the deal.
Knocking $500 for materials for a hand size repair is generous. You doing the repair for $500 is also generous. This is not a difficult repair, and you sound like you know what you are doing, so no worries there.

Being a hard nose means you
Have to find another boat
Cancel your check before it can be cashed Monday morning.
Will probably end up getting sued for the damages as you participated in the launch, and the amount of time and money you spend on this will greatly exceed your repair time labor.

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Old 08-13-2005, 08:48 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

If you knew the repairs made to "New" boats you would never buy one!!!!

Don't ask Cus I aint telling publicy !!!!!


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Old 08-13-2005, 09:12 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

Boats are stronger than one might think -
I had a very used 1977 welcraft 21' StepV. when I was about 19-20.

The First accident I had I was going about about 40- 50 MPH when two cars collided in front of me on my way to the ramp (Matheson Hammock). I locked up the brakes on my parents Buick 225. I was borrowing a trailer from a friend which he had for his 28' Bertram.
You guessed it... I looked in the rear view Mirror as the boat flew up the trailer hit the winch stand broke the cable went over the trunk (never touched/hit the buick) landed on the road next to the car. it was quite the site.

I disconnected the trailer from the car. Reaattached the cable to the winch and simply cranked the boat back up on the trailer. We went out 16 miles that day with-out a problem.

Accident #2 Same boat 3 month Later Matheson Hammock..Pulling a skier in a Mangrove lined canal the Steering cable broke. The engine turned right the boat turned left. We hit the mangroves as fast as that boat would go. snapped alot of big branches ended up 8' in the air stuck deep inthe mangrove.

That was the last of the accidents the boat ran fine and worked well for about the next 3 years.
amazingly there was very little damage from both incidents.

You are probably fine.. I would make the most of what you can if you like the boat. Boating is an adventure!
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Old 08-13-2005, 09:26 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

I don't know anything about repairing boats so I defer to the other pro's here on what you should consider in the purchase/walk decision. If, however, you buy it, I would make certain the paper work identifies the damage and the cause (broker) ..... should you have problems with collateral damage you uncover later you have the documentation going in your favor. Good luck and sorry about what was intended to be a great day turning ugly in a hurry.
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Old 08-13-2005, 09:50 PM
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Default Re: dropped boat off the trailer today launching

Question??? Would you now purchase the boat if the accident did not happen??

HeadHunt
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