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#567036 - 01/26/17 03:39 AM Shopping for our first boat  
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 1
Kyhick Offline
Warrant Officer
Kyhick  Offline
Warrant Officer

Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 1
Portland, TN
Greetings everyone,

Some very good information on here. Mack and I are shopping for our first boat. We plan on doing the loop a chunk at a time. We have been shopping for a used cruiser around 27-30ft under 9000 lbs and less than 10ft beam. We have looked at Bayliners, Sea Rays, Regal and Rinkers. We have an appointment to go look at a very nice Donzi Tomorrow. We have looked at 100's of boats online, but only touched a handful. So far haven't found the right one. So far my favorite boat has been a Sea Ray 280 Sundancer.

We started out thinking BIG boats, 40ft, but figured out that it would be too expensive to maintain and run, so we are going smaller. A boat we can trailer with our truck.

This has been a very informative journey so far. We have learned a lot talking to some great boaters.

Look forward to hearing from you'll,


Walter and Heather McIntosh
2000 Ford F150-7700
In the market for our first 27'-29'ft motor cruiser
#567037 - 01/26/17 10:58 AM Re: Shopping for our first boat [Re: Kyhick]  
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 6,436
On Holiday Offline
On Holiday  Offline

Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 6,436
PA and Smith Mountain Lake
Welcome Heather and welcome to BABC. You are certainly jumping in right away and going big.

Keep in mind that boats over 8'-6" wide often require towing permits, check your state laws to verify.

Looking online is a great start however actually touching as you say is very important. There are lots of boat shows going on now where this is possible to sit in many boats at one location.

I notice you have a F150 7700 which is basically a F250 in a F150. We have a 2003 F150 and it tows our Regal 2400 but is almost maxed out. Towing with my Dodge 2500 diesel is so much easier. Make sure you check the towing limits and know what the boat weighs. Boats tend to gain weight once you start adding personal belongings to it.

Keep in touch as there are lots of experience on this board.

2008 Honda Goldwing Trike
2006 Regal 2400
2004 Dodge Ram 2500
2003 Ford F-150
2002 Harley Davidson Roadking Classic
1998 Honda Civic

#567038 - 01/26/17 11:11 AM Re: Shopping for our first boat [Re: Kyhick]  
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 7,452
captkevin Offline
captkevin  Offline

Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 7,452
Chicago, IL
How much towing do you plan on doing?

What is your all in budget?

Keep us posted on your journey & there is no such thing as posting too many pictures.

Lastly welcome to the forum.

2004 Rinker 232
2010 Dodge Ram Crew Cab Laramie 4x4
#567039 - 01/26/17 11:49 AM Re: Shopping for our first boat [Re: Kyhick]  
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 2,111
2Suns Offline
2Suns  Offline

Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 2,111
The loop as in boating the loop or trailering to parts of the loop?

If you're boating it, pay close attention to range. I think you'll need a range of at least 250 miles, maybe more. I think that's hard to get in the 27-29' category.

Good luck.

By the time they had diminished from 50 to 8, the other dwarves began to suspect "Hungry.-Gary Larson
#567041 - 01/26/17 01:07 PM Re: Shopping for our first boat [Re: Kyhick]  
Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 15,087
GoFirstClass Offline
Retired Boating Bum
GoFirstClass  Offline
Retired Boating Bum
Grand Poobah

Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 15,087
Pasco, WA
Welcome to BABC. This is a great place to hang out and get your questions answered without being flamed like you get on some boards.

When talking with people who are buying a first boat, I usually tell them to buy their second boat first. By that I mean that too many people don't take their time when they're looking for a first boat. They want to hit the water so they buy one that turns them on without really thinking if it will fit their needs.

Then they use it for a year, decide it's not what they want so they trade it in on one that DOES suit their needs. That can be very expensive.

So my suggestion is take your time, walk on a lot of boats, find what you don't like about them and start a list of things you like and don't like.

Then, after you've done your due diligence, buy the boat you would have bought second, only make it your first boat.

Keep us informed on your search and ask lots of questions.

Again, welcome to BABC.

"Beachcomber" 1995 Sea Ray 550 Sedan Bridge

Anchor's down......Bottoms Up!
#567042 - 01/26/17 03:06 PM Re: Shopping for our first boat [Re: Kyhick]  
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,329
tpenfield Offline
tpenfield  Offline

Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,329
Cape Cod, MA
Welcome, as well smile

I would recommend here (boatingabc) and for general searching, assessing and buying guidance. May we assume that you are buying used (sounds like it)?

The Sea Ray 280 is a nice boat . . . I would say Sea Ray and Regal are the better brands from what you listed. You may find a Formula 27 interesting as well.

Key things with buying used is the mechanical condition and the structural condition. Lots of folks don't realize that there is a lot of wood in many/most fiberglass boats and at about 15 years of age the wood can be rotting.

You can always have a pre-purchase survey done to verify that you have a good boat before you buy.

Last edited by tpenfield; 01/26/17 03:45 PM.

Regards, Ted

Formula 330SS

My Boat Web Sites
#567044 - 01/27/17 09:40 PM Re: Shopping for our first boat [Re: Kyhick]  
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 3,139
casualboater Offline
casualboater  Offline

Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 3,139
Highland, Michigan
The great loop is on my bucket list. Not sure how realistic a goal at this point, but I still keep it out there.

As I've done my looking I keep coming to a trawler, but hard to find those that are trailerable. I really want a fly bridge, I don't want the option to enjoy the weather or not depending on conditions.

1989 Larson DC 190
2007 Saab 9-7x
#567045 - 01/28/17 01:04 PM Re: Shopping for our first boat [Re: Kyhick]  
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,889
Dock Holiday Offline
Dock Holiday  Offline

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,889
Lake Geneva, WI

One big decision in the 27' to 29' size range is twin engines or single. Twins sure are nice on the water for 1) maneuvering, and 2) back up in case one engine fails. If you are doing the loop, then 2) becomes an important factor. Of course, twins cost more to purchase and maintain, and are heavier to tow.

Happy Hunting!

Last edited by Dock Holiday; 01/28/17 01:58 PM.
#567046 - 01/28/17 03:01 PM Re: Shopping for our first boat [Re: Kyhick]  
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,347
WayWeGo Offline
WayWeGo  Offline

Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,347
Oakton, VA
Have you looked at a Rosborough RF-246?

A trailer boat with a very seaworthy hull, though you probably need a bigger truck to pull it. Many have done the loop and other long trips.

We bought our current boat with an eye towards doing the loop in a few years. Maybe we will see you out there!

1975 Trojan F36 Convertible, Twin Chrysler 440's
2014 West Marine AL360 Inflatable, 1966 Mercury 6HP, 1992 Mercury 20HP

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