Keeping Your Boating Costs Down

Boat Ownership Doesn’t Have to be Expensive

I’ve heard the phrase “A boat is a hole in the water that you throw money into”. Maybe you’ve all heard that too? But I’m here to tell you that boat ownership doesn’t have to be that way!

Boat Ownership on the Cheap

Maybe some of you have seen the video I recently posted that shows the modifications that I did to my bass boat to make it more of a general fishing boat. If you haven’t, I suggest you head here to view it, I’ll wait. OK, are you back? Let’s talk about how much all of those modifications cost.

Boat Upgrade Costs

Let’s list the costs:

As you can see, it’s not totally cheap but it’s under a thousand and you’ve got a well equipped fishing boat.

What’s The Real Secret?

The secret here is two fold. 

  1. Don’t buy a used boat until you have a good running motor with a solid hull. That may take time and patience but, if you hold out for the right one, it will come. My 1999 Hydra-Sport Bass Boat, with a 150HP Johnson outboard and a trailer cost me $1200.00! It was an ugly boat when I bought it. It needed cleaning and the seats and steering wheel needed to be replaced. But that hull is as sound as it gets and the engine starts and runs wonderfully. We’re not looking for flash, we’re looking for functionality!
  2. Learn to work on your boat yourself! I literally had never touched a boat other than to fish on someone else’s before I bought the Jon Boat. With patience and a TON of YouTube videos, I learned to do all of the mods that I’ve done. You can, too!

Know Your Limits

Boat Ownership doesn't have to be expensive
The Throttle that needed to be replaced

Not too long ago, I had to have the throttle on my boat replaced. I tried. I really did. This was just beyond my abilities. However, through a ton of research and a willingness to try anything once, I was able to determine that there was no simple way to remove the old throttle assembly so I did what pretty much every video I’d watched suggested, I cut out an access panel. I then took the boat to a local boat company and asked them if they could complete the repair. They declined, stating that if I insisted it would cost upwards of $600.00. However, the representative at the boat company knew a “backyard mechanic” that would do it for less. The throttle assembly, however, would cost me $400 plus.

Save Money on Parts!

I was not in a good mood. I just couldn’t justify spending $400 plus whatever the installation would cost so, off to eBay I went. To make an already long story a little shorter, I got a throttle assembly on eBay for $75.00, the “backyard mechanic” installed it, along with new throttle cables for $160.00 and my boat was up and running like new for a grand total of $235 for what was quoted to me at $600 initially. And the mechanic praised the hell out of me for cutting that access panel which I’ve now converted into a small storage area.

B.O.A.T. doesn’t have to stand for “Break Out Another Thousand”. Maybe the new saying could be “Best Opportunity At Timeouts”


Tight Lines, Everyone!

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