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#574201 - 09/01/20 02:13 AM First Time Boat Owner  
Joined: Sep 2020
Posts: 2
rgodfrey914 Offline
Warrant Officer
rgodfrey914  Offline
Warrant Officer

Joined: Sep 2020
Posts: 2
Longview, TX
Hey all!

Been lurking and reading for a little while now, and figured it was time to make my first post!

I'm looking into getting my first boat in the next few months. My family and I have been to the lake a few times this summer and my 2-year old loves the water. The wife is also a fan, and we've been talking more about getting a boat for next year. Our primary "mission" would be cruising local lakes, skiing, tubing, and some wake boarding here and there. As such, I'm thinking a bow rider is the move.

Currently, I am looking at a Chaparral 21 SST. We have what I believe to be a really good dealer here in town (Plano Marine), and I think a 21 footer is a good starting point. I'm looking at a Chaparral because I get the impression that they're a very healthy balance between cost and quality. I'm the kind of guy that doesn't mind paying a bit extra for something of good quality that will last me a long time. In essence, I'd like to buy my second boat first.

So with that said, am I a complete nut case for wanting to buy a boat right now? I know that inventory is crazy low and prices are crazy high, at least on the used market. I must say, though, that I'm leery about buying a used boat in the first place even though I'm mechanically inclined and not scared of a little work. Having owned a plane for the last 3 years, I know how easy it is to mess up when buying one of those, and I feel like a boat might be the same thing.

Any tips, advice, and help are greatly appreciated. Happy to have found this awesome little community!

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#574202 - 09/01/20 11:39 AM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 7,926
captkevin Offline
Admiral
captkevin  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 7,926
Chicago, IL
Welcome to the forum. What an exciting time buying your 1st boat. 21' is definitely a good starting out point & Chaparral makes a great boat. They are on the short list for our next one.


2004 Rinker 232
2010 Dodge Ram Crew Cab Laramie 4x4
#574203 - 09/01/20 12:28 PM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 15,572
GoFirstClass Offline
Retired Boating Bum
GoFirstClass  Offline
Retired Boating Bum
Grand Poobah

Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 15,572
Pasco, WA
Welcome to BABC. You're starting out with a good size boat and with a good brand. While this may not be the "best" time to buy, where you are located in TX with a bazillion lakes around, I don't think you can go wrong.

Since this is your first boat I'd recommend both you and your wife/SO take a boating safety course. I'd also recommend you take it in a classroom setting if you can find one. The exchange of info you get from the other boaters in the class is invaluable.

Good luck with your search and you might want to take a look at two threads that are stickies on the General Boating part of the forum. There's some good info in there that might help with your negotiations.


"Beachcomber" 1995 Sea Ray 550 Sedan Bridge


Anchor's down......Bottoms Up!
#574204 - 09/01/20 12:43 PM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 6,590
On Holiday Offline
Daddy
On Holiday  Offline
Daddy
Admiral

Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 6,590
PA and Smith Mountain Lake
Welcome aboard. We took out children boating when they were 6 and 7 months old. It would have been earlier however they were both born in early winter. They are now 13 and 7 and love being on the water.


2017 Honda Accord Hybrid
2008 Honda Goldwing Trike
2006 Regal 2400
2004 Dodge Ram 2500
2003 Ford F-150
2002 Harley Davidson Roadking Classic


#574205 - 09/01/20 07:45 PM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,055
Jack T Offline
Admiral
Jack T  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,055
Southern California
welcome aboard. Congrats for even just looking for a boat at this time.

Is the Chappy new or used. What model year? Engine size? If you are going to tow, make sure you have a vehicle large enough to pull it with a full tank of gas and all the people and gear needed for a day on the water. You'd be surprised how much this stuff weighs.

One thing I found when shopping is that just like automobiles, the options cost a lot compared to the complete product. There are plenty of other things to know about. Surely, others will chip in with their experiences.


Have a great day of boating
2012 Monterey 224 FS,
300 HP Volvo Penta with catalytic converters

#574207 - 09/01/20 11:09 PM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: Jack T]  
Joined: Sep 2020
Posts: 2
rgodfrey914 Offline
Warrant Officer
rgodfrey914  Offline
Warrant Officer

Joined: Sep 2020
Posts: 2
Longview, TX
Originally Posted by Jack T
welcome aboard. Congrats for even just looking for a boat at this time.

Is the Chappy new or used. What model year? Engine size? If you are going to tow, make sure you have a vehicle large enough to pull it with a full tank of gas and all the people and gear needed for a day on the water. You'd be surprised how much this stuff weighs.

One thing I found when shopping is that just like automobiles, the options cost a lot compared to the complete product. There are plenty of other things to know about. Surely, others will chip in with their experiences.


It'd be a new one. Used boats are all but impossible to find, and I don't really want to feel rushed into making a decision as I'm sure I would be trying to compete for decent specimens in the used market. Besides, I like the peace of mind that comes with knowing I'm the only person who's ever run the boat. So it'd be a 2021 Chaparral 21 SSi with a 250 horse Mercruiser. I have a RAM 1500 with the 5.7 so it should be more than enough for the boat. Thanks for bringing that to my attention--definitely would suck to buy a boat but not have enough truck to pull it. My boat will pretty much live on a trailer as I don't own a lake property and there are MANY lakes to visit here in East Texas.

#574208 - 09/02/20 08:04 AM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 6,687
Dave R Offline
Admiral
Dave R  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 6,687
Raymond NH
Sounds like a great boat. Consider an outboard instead of an I/O, they are much easier to maintain. I have owned 3 I/O boats and have decided to never own another... That said, I totally get why they are popular in a boat like that and it's not that bad to maintain one.


"Mischief Managed II"
1992 Tollycraft 44 Cockpit Motor Yacht
Twin CAT 3208TA inboards
#574209 - 09/02/20 08:26 AM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 7,926
captkevin Offline
Admiral
captkevin  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 7,926
Chicago, IL
Does the boat come on a single axle trailer or tandem axle trailer? If you are going to do a fair amount of towing you might want to consider upgrading to a tandem axle.


2004 Rinker 232
2010 Dodge Ram Crew Cab Laramie 4x4
#574212 - 09/02/20 10:49 AM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 7,047
Parrott_head Offline
Admiral of Vice
Parrott_head  Offline
Admiral of Vice
Admiral

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 7,047
Good choice in brands, it was on my short list.
I would second what Dave R said, go with an outboard if you can find one that fits your style. I live in central Oklahoma so we had to pickle ours every fall to prevent freeze damage, with an OB that is simple. It also gives you the chance to get to the lake for a mid winter weekend if you get a nice warm weekend without having to mothball the boat again. Not sure if Plano is far enough south you can safely forego mothballing an engine during the winter. Local boat shops could advise on this.

You are near Texoma, where we kept our boat and it got cold enough there for damage to occur.

Texoma is a nice like but has a bit of salt in it, as do most lakes along the Red River. No problem really, just wipe your boat down with 50/50 mix of white vinegar and water to clean the hull of the pink stain that lake can leave.
If you haven't absolutely got your heart set on the brand and dealer, give Phill Dill in Lewisville a visit. I did business with them for years and was never disappointed in their mechanics or service manager.
One time I was leaving their yard with my boat and the SM had me stop and told a hand to pump my hubs with grease just to be sure. I thought I was keeping up with it but the stuff that came out was nasty. Two tubes of grease were used, I offered to pay but they said no charge.


Former owner of a 2002 Four Winns 234 FunShip
'16 F250 4x4 Oil Burner
"Hey, if I'm a Vice Admiral, which vice do I get to claim?"
#574213 - 09/02/20 04:13 PM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,385
tpenfield Offline
Admiral
tpenfield  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,385
Cape Cod, MA
Welcome to the boating community . . .

If you do your own wrench turning, you will save a lot of money, with which to buy more beer. laugh

If you are buying new, then not much to worry about except getting loose ends fixed by the dealer. I agree an outboard is the more favored thing now, but you might swing a better deal on an I/O, if it comes down to that.

The craziness in the market place might be subsiding, as the boating season in many parts of North America starts to wind down. Not sure how late the season runs in TX (Dallas area?), but figure that most people who really wanted a boat for this season already made their move.

Chaparral is a decent brand of boat and I think your comment about being a balance of quality and cost is right on the mark.

Make sure you have boater safety training for both you and the 'Admiral' as you will want to be safe on the water . . . I always tell people that "boating is dangerous, it only looks like fun".

Last edited by tpenfield; 09/10/20 12:20 PM.

Regards, Ted

Formula 330SS

My Boat Web Sites
#574219 - 09/02/20 07:16 PM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,511
WayWeGo Offline
Admiral
WayWeGo  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,511
Oakton, VA
Welcome -- this is a great place to hang out and I have made some lifelong friends here!

We had a Chaparral for about 10 years and it was a great boat for us, even though it was 12 years old when we bought it. The guy I sold it to is loving it and sometimes sends me photos of how much fun his family is having on it. If it was not well built and taken care of, it would never had made it 25+ years.

Outboards are quite popular right now, so are going to command a premium. Winterizing an I/O (sterndrive) is not that big of a deal if you do it yourself. I got to where I could do it in about three hours for the engine/drive only. That included draining the raw water system, filling it with antifreeze and changing the oil in the engine and outdrive. Everything else is just about the same no mater what your propulsion system is.


[Linked Image]
1975 Trojan F36 Convertible, Twin Chrysler 440's
2014 West Marine AL360 Inflatable, 1966 Mercury 6HP, 1992 Mercury 20HP
#574220 - 09/02/20 11:51 PM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,055
Jack T Offline
Admiral
Jack T  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,055
Southern California
"One time I was leaving their yard with my boat and the SM had me stop and told a hand to pump my hubs with grease just to be sure. I thought I was keeping up with it but the stuff that came out was nasty. Two tubes of grease were used, I offered to pay but they said no charge."

Be aware that different bearing assemblies have different methods for greasing them.
Some trailer bearing assemblies never need to have grease pumped in, and they have a lifetime warranty. No need to do anything, unless there is a leaky seal and grease is getting flung all over the affected wheel, fenders, and boat, mabe.

Other manufacturers use different methods to maintain grease levels. One, for example, actually has weep holes on the inside of the bearing assembly. On theirs, you pump until grease comes out the weep hole.

And, by all means, do not trust anyone tell you how to maintain your hubs. Get the service instructions from the manufacturer, follow them.


Have a great day of boating
2012 Monterey 224 FS,
300 HP Volvo Penta with catalytic converters

#574221 - 09/03/20 09:33 PM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 3,563
kenhdog Offline
Admiral
kenhdog  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 3,563
Oxnard, CA
I looked seriously at a Chap before we bought our Rinker.

Really liked them (a 220 SSI?) at the time.

I only went with our Rinker because it had a layout similar to the Chap that had me hooked, and the dealer offered me a deal on the last one on their lot in that model before they started concentrating on their Malibu boat brand.

I think Rinker is now defunct, but I never forgot that Chap.

Good luck and keep us posted.


2002 Rinker 212 Captiva
Merc 5.7 EFI Alpha
Trail-Rite Trailer
1999 GMC 'Burb
#574223 - 09/04/20 02:48 PM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 11,926
Frantically Relaxing Offline
Admiral
Frantically Relaxing  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 11,926
I've owned a crapload of boats-- still HAVE a crapload wink -- my favorite boat ever was our '03 Chap 262ssi. It was my favorite from the get-go, but was no contest when we sold it. See, I Do Not Baby my stuff, ANY of my stuff. Cars, trucks, boats, ATV's, motorcycles, my work machinery, nothing. I USE my stuff. And I'm not afraid to use it hard. The Chap endured the good times we put her thru without breaking a sweat. Some of the most memorable times of our lives were spent on that boat...

[Linked Image]



[Linked Image]


The best of times, hauling the Chap out with the SkipperLiner, food, beverage, boating fun, nothing better... (Been awhile, I miss those days!)

[Linked Image]

#574224 - 09/04/20 02:51 PM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 11,926
Frantically Relaxing Offline
Admiral
Frantically Relaxing  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 11,926
We had the Chap for 5 years, it was nearly immaculate when we bought it, and ditto when we sold it. Got pics to prove it laugh

4 pairs of pics, first of each pair is within the first week we owned her, second pics I took immediately before
hauling her to the boat broker's lot. Absolutely none the worse for wear... smile

[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]

[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]

=================================

I'm a Chap fan, to be sure. Hope to have another one some day. wink

#574263 - 09/16/20 11:16 AM Re: First Time Boat Owner [Re: rgodfrey914]  
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 7,926
captkevin Offline
Admiral
captkevin  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 7,926
Chicago, IL
Frantic that Chaparral you owned was one great looking boat. That has always been a favorite of mine. If i could find a clean one priced right i'd be all over it.


2004 Rinker 232
2010 Dodge Ram Crew Cab Laramie 4x4

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