Monday, July 14, 2014

Sellers Beware

I'm probably the least violent person you will ever meet. I'm pretty thick skinned and if you piss me off you had to work at it really hard. I hate anything to do with guns, I abhor war in any form, and I generally back off from confrontation in general unless I, or someone I love, have been wronged. So you can imagine just how much it would take me to get to the point of telling you that I want to do physical harm to the guy who sold The Floating Bear to my kids.

The Bear's original name was Obsession. The previous owner was clearly not obsessed with anything but getting out of what was even more clearly a bad purchase he had made. Along come two newbies, and he saw his chance. The only problem? Those two newbies were putting two small children on the boat. My grandchildren.



You want to believe that things are different in the boating community.  After cruising for a year we've found that to be true in the cruising community and we certainly had the background of a fantastic group of people in our home marina in Carlyle, IL, but something happens to people when they sell their boat. All of a sudden they develop a severe case of selective memory.

Brad (name not changed to protect the innocent) willingly sold my kids a boat with serious, nearly fatal faults. And yes, before you leave a hundred comments about it, it was definitely their responsibility to have the boat inspected. Unfortunately, their mechanic father was otherwise indisposed in the islands. They were broke, needed a place to live, it was an inexpensive boat, it was where they needed it to be when they needed it to be there and did I say they were broke? They made many mistakes, the biggest of which was trusting a boat owner that said he "fixed the rudder", but you still find yourself hoping that any human being looking at those two toddlers could not find it in themselves to sell a boat with these chainplate mounts.



Did I mention that this pissed me off?

8 comments:

HossAndKatyLin VW said...

People can be so dishonest! Sorry that your kids had to go through this experience! Is the boat at all salvageable, or is it a total loss? (I have very little experience with boats, so you may have said something that indicated that, and I maybe missed it.) My hubby and I are hoping to be in the market soon, and this is one of my biggest fears! Hope that the end of the story is a happy one!

Rharriscpa said...

It is so hard for those who are not experienced with boats be it sail or power to comprehend all the pieces and parts that make up a boat of almost any kind. Also those who sell them only make money when cash changes hands. It's sad but true. I know I spent $1,000s traveling around the country to sent mint condition boats only to arrive and find too many problems in the first few minutes to even consider. "Well maintained "in boat speak is it floats.
How many cruising books talk about all they do is work on projects. Unfortunately the less you spend the longer the list is. I am convinced there are never good deals on boats.

S/V Island Bound said...

This sucks the big one. So sorry for you guys. If it was happening to my kids I would have a major hemorrhage too. The only consolation is karma...which I truly believe in. Some day he will get his due.

Deb said...

@HossAndKatyLin - I hope that you benefit from some of the mistakes we've made and detailed in this blog. The one thing we did right, it appears, was NOT to buy the boat in FL. We debated early on whether to buy the boat and have it shipped to our lake in IL to refit while we still had jobs, or to save lots of money and quit our jobs and move to FL, buy a boat, and then refit it. The decision to buy the boat and move it to our lake while we still had jobs was one of the best ones we did as it turned out.

Deb said...

@Bill - I, too, believe in karma. You know I'm always espousing John Vigor's Black Box Theory. If Tim ever runs into the guy, though, he may be helping karma along just a tiny bit...

Deb said...

@Robert - You're absolutely right. If I had a dime for every picture I've looked at in a boat ad that had absolutely nothing to do with the actual condition of the represented boat, I would have enough money to buy the kids a good one. And by the way, "Well maintained" might not even mean it floats as in this case...

Rharriscpa said...

True Deb if the water is shallow enough then well maintained means we have a spot for the boat that keeps the deck dry. So sorry for this young talented couple with two lovely children.

Latitude 43 said...

It is really hard to find a good boat that's affordable. It seems every boat has issues, and if you find one that's near perfect then you can't afford it. I know there are a few exceptions out there but they are rare. If we bought the boat with the least problems we would still be working trying to pay for it. I guess it's hard for people to be honest when it involves cash, but how could this guy possibly sleep at night knowing a young inexperienced family will be living on it? Sorry to see you guys working so hard but it will be worth it knowing the kids have a safe home.