From Boatus Magazine America’s Most
BoatUS Magazine, official publication of the Boat Owners Association of The United States , provides recreational boating skills, DIY maintenance, safety, news, lifestyle and personality profiles, and insight from top experts. The award-winning boating magazine publishes several issues a year and is an exclusive benefit of BoatUS Membership.
Our active and passionate readers enjoy powerboating, sailing, cruising, fishing, and water sports on boats both big and small. In addition to the print publication, BoatUS Magazine sends email newsletters with exclusive curated content specific to your boating interests.
Think About The Design And Upkeep
Another important aspect that you have to consider in picking a marine battery is the design and maintenance demand of the power cell. Ideally, you want to go for the maintenance-free batteries with durable design. They are more convenient to use, and they will also help you save a lot of money in the long run by reducing the maintenance expenses and by providing longer service life. Considering the design of the power cell will also make it easier for you to install the battery itself.
For Just $25/year Members Receive 25+ Exclusive Benefits Including:
- Subscription to BoatUS Magazine plus access to digital archives
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A Guide To Different Types Of Boats
As we all know, a boat is a type of watercraft that has been specifically designed for navigating near-shore areas or inland waterways such as rivers and lakes.
What makes a boat different from a ship is its smaller size and lesser carrying capacity compared to the latter.
However, the definition of a boat its size, shape and capacity-varies according to its purpose. To understand better, you might want to read about the major differences between boat and ship.
According to modern naval terms, a boat is defined as a watercraft that is small enough to be carried abroad a ship .
Similarly, many boats are intended to provide service, not in near-shore areas but in the offshore environment.
Interestingly, contradicting the ships can carry boats, but boats cant carry ships argument, even sometimes the US Navy submarines are called boats.
Historical evidence suggests that the boat has been used for transportation since pre-historic times. However, from the oldest known boat named dugouts, the evolution of the watercraft has now reached luxurious motor yachts.
Apart from recreational purposes, boats have also served an integral purpose in the modern commercial world by allowing active transportation of both passengers and cargo, wherever short distances are concerned.
How Much Do I Want To Spend On Bottom Paint
Typically, the higher concentration of biocide a bottom paint has, the more expensive it will be. Hard bottom paints are typically less expensive than ablative antifouling paints. Among the ablative marine paints, the single-season ablatives are typically less expensive than the multiple season ablatives.
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What Are Some Boat Manufacturers Currently On The Market
There are a surprising amount of boat manufacturers currently on the market. Some specialize in one type of boat while others focus on many types of boats. Some are considered affordable while others are considered a luxury.
- Princess Yachts
This is not an exhaustive list of all the boat brands that are currently on the market, but it is a good starting place to do some research. For a full list of all boat brands available, head over to Discover Boating.
What Is My Boat Made Of
When it comes to choosing bottom paint, substrate is a big consideration. Do you have an aluminum, fiberglass, steel or wooden boat? Most bottom paints contain some type of copper biocide, which is suitable for fiberglass and wooden boats, but not for aluminum. The copper in the paint causes galvanic corrosion, which will destroy an aluminum boat or pontoon boat. For antifouling protection on aluminum boats and underwater metal parts, you have to apply a copper-free bottom paint.
Inflatable boats made of PVC, Hypalon or other materials also need bottom paint if theyre left in the water for long periods. Ablative bottom paints designed for inflatable boats wont crack after drying or peel while youre rolling up the inflatable for storage.
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Custom Covers For The Best Fit
A custom cover made just for the year, make and model of your boat, and designed to cover its individual accessories, will fit like a custom-tailored suit. It costs the most, but is the easiest to put on and remove, is the best for trailering and will last the longest. There are thousands of patterns available: for example, a cover is available for a 1996 Bayliner 1850 Capri SS with a transom-mounted swim platform and 6″ to 18″ bow rails.
If you own a one-of-a-kind boat or your boat has a lot of unusual options, you may need to have direct measurements taken by a custom canvas shop. They can build to your specifics, but this kind of cover will be the most costly, and may take substantially longer to receive.
What Factors Determine A Boats Required Equipment
The size of your boat determines the required equipment for your vessel. The incremental categories usually go like so: 16 feet and below + canoes and kayaks
- Personal Flotation Devices , one per person
- Must be coast guard approved, fitted to each person, and readily accessible
16 feet to 26 feet
- Same requirements as 16 and below category +
- Visual Distress Signals
- Minimum of 3-day and 3-night use
26 feet to 40 feet
- Same as 16-26 category +
- Pollution Regulation Placards
- 5×8 oil discharge placard and 4×9 waste discharge placard
40 feet to 65 feet
- Same as 26 to 40 category +
- Coast Guard standard system required on gasoline-powered vessels with enclosed engine compartments built after August 1980
65 feet to 165 feet
- Same as 40 to 65 category
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Which Fabric To Choose
Fabric properties: Boat cover fabrics need to be the right combination of breathability and water repellency – to keep rain water out, yet allow trapped water vapor to escape. They also need to be UV- and mildew-resistant. Tensile strength and abrasion resistance is especially important in trailer covers as they withstand the rigors of the road. Few materials perfectly meet all the requirements, but coated synthetic fabrics come pretty close to the ideal compromise. Cotton and polyester blends won’t last as long as synthetic fabrics, as natural yarns simply don’t have high resistance against mildew and UV light. Pigment dyed polyester fabrics have a good strength to weight ratio and are an excellent choice because it is strong and breathable, yet it repels water and stands up to UV radiation. A good yet economical choice when choosing a synthetic fabric is Hot Shot , an acrylic coated polyester. Two other popular, durable and practical choices are urethane coated, solution dyed polyester fabrics such as Ultima or solution-dyed acrylics like Sunbrella , both of which are breathable, stain-, UV- and mildew-resistant and shed water well.
Where Do I Use Or Keep My Boat Location Is Everything
What are the fouling conditions in your area? By area we mean not only the geographic location, but the specific harbor, and even your location in the harbor. Why? Because the fouling conditions can be that location-specific. Is the fouling light, moderate, or heavy in your part of the harbor? Typically, more biofouling occurs in waters that are warm and still, rather than colder waters where water flow is unrestricted.
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What To Think About While Youre At The Boat Dealership
When you are at a dealership and think you have found the boat for you, it is your responsibility to ask for a sea trial, if appropriate and to conduct a marine survey.
What is a sea trial?
A sea trial is a marine equivalent to a test drive, with a few key differences. Most boat dealers have to schedule a sea trial days in advance so they can be sure to prep the boat for usage and have all the proper safety guidelines fulfilled. For this reason, it is frowned upon to take more boats than necessary on a sea trial. Most people take the boat they are seriously considering purchasing out for a sea trial. When you are on a sea trial, this is the time to look for any red flags. Do the things you plan to do with the boat yourself while out on the trial run. Bring the boat up to at least 30 mph, make some sharp turns, test the boat in waves, practice tying off the boat at a slip, sit in different positions, make a note of anything you find out or out of place. Test the sound system, the steering, the get-up, and really anything else you can think of that would be important to you as a boat owner.
What is a marine survey?
How Large Of A Boat Do I Need For Lake Michigan
If you have ever traveled by boat on a lake and an ocean, you know that the rides offer totally different perks and difficulties. Captaining a boat on a Great Lake offers an even more unique challenge in transitioning from one type of water to another. If this is your first time attempting to cruise on Lake Michigan, you may be asking yourself how to prepare.
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At What Point Do I Need A Captains License
If you own a boat or spend a lot of time out on the ocean, youve probably come across the term captains license. You may even be wondering if you need one to operate your own personal vessel. If youre taking your boat out leisurely on the weekends with family and friends, then you dont need a captains license, however if you are carrying passengers for hire , youll definitely need to attain one.
A captains license is similar to a drivers license, only for boats. There are a number of licenses available, based on the type and size of the vessel being operated but there are two main types that are issued by the United States Coast Guard :
What Size Boat Do You Need
Again, your primary use cases will drive much of the decision making here. If watersports are your main concern, smaller boats with enough power in the engines to pull skiers and wakeboarders is a common option.
If fishing is your aim, youll want to consider where you plan to do most of your fishing. For inshore fishing, smaller flats boats and bay boats are common options as they enable you to get to shallow, hard-to-reach fishing spots. If your goal is to get offshore, the deep-V hulls and outboard power of center consoles will get the job done. Depending on your comfort level and needs, the size of the center console you need will vary. You can go as small as 20 feet or go 30 feet and up. The larger you go, the more capabilities and the rougher seas you can handle, but of course, the price goes up as well.
For versatile family fun, bowriders and dual consoles of all sizes can work well . Dual consoles on the larger end of the spectrum will enable going offshore when handling rougher seas. If youre sticking to family fun on freshwater lakes, bowriders, deck boats and pontoons anywhere from 17 ft. up to 25 ft. can be sufficient.
Additionally, your price will vary widely based on the age of the boat. While newer boats will cost more, they also typically come with some form of a warranty that can be quite helpful.
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Selecting The Right Boat Cover
Every day, most boats endure a cycle of temperature and humidity changes, from cool and damp nights to hot, dry bright sun. This expansion and contraction, wet-dry daily cycling, occurring even on days with the best boating weather, takes a toll on gelcoat and wood brightwork. Add salt air, pollution, dirt, rodents, bird droppings, the occasional hailstorm and who knows what else, and your expensive, prized possession is under siege. Thats why a good boat cover is so important. A modest investment in a cover prevents faded and oxidized gelcoat, bleached and cracked wood, mildew and mold. It hides valuable equipment from theft, because whats out of sight is out of mind.
A Complete Guide On Boat Types: Which One Is Right For You
If the water beckons you, youve found your people at Germaine Marine. We specialize in all things boats, and we can match you with the kind of boat that lets you spend a day your way on the water. Many people wonder, What kind of boat should I buy? And with so many options to choose from, the decision can feel overwhelming. There are dozens of boat types that vary by shape, size, and capacity for everything from sailing to fishing to water sports to daytime and overnight cruising.
As you peruse each boat type below, you will find it easier to choose the right boat for you by considering your use for it, how much time you have to spend on the water, and how many people you regularly bring with you.
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What Types Of Boats Are There
This might seem like a silly question, but its actually a bit more cumbersome than you might expect. A boat is a thing that floats and thats it, right? Wellyes, but also there are literally dozens of different types of boats that are differentiated by their purpose for floating on water. For example, there are boats for fishing, boats for watersports, boats for long-term trips, boats for cruising, boats for going fast, boats for the open ocean, boats for lakes, boats with engines, boats without engines you get the idea. There are a lot of boats to choose from. In this section, we are going to briefly cover some of the most popular types of boats on the market to help you narrow down your search and find which type of boat might be a good fit for you.
Unsurprisingly, a Bass Boat is a boat made specifically for catching bass fish. These boats are equipped and designed for catching bass and other panfish, usually in freshwater. Modern bass boats feature swivel chairs, which allow the angler to cast their rod from any position in any direction. The boats have storage bins for bait, rods, and lures in addition to live wells where the fish can be kept alive while you continue to fish. Bass Boats are traditionally outboard boats and some have a trolling motor, which allows you to cruise at a very slow and consistent pace. They are usually aluminum or fiberglass.
Finding Boats For Sale
Where to shop for new and used boats. It goes without saying that there are many places to find both new and used boats for sale. From the junkyard to the showroom boats are everywhere, but where is the best place to find the right boat for you? These days its very common for many buyers to buy a boat online, or at least to begin the process of searching online.
Boat Trader is the go-to destination for buyers across America to find both new and used boats for sale by dealers, as well as by private sellers all over the U.S. With over 100,000 listings throughout the country, and advanced search filters to help you narrow down your search, Boat Trader offers the most extensive selection of boats to browse and choose from, including: fishing, ski/wake, pontoon, center console and long-range cruising boats and yachts. There is also a way to setup up Search Alerts on Boat Trader that will help you look without looking so you are immediately notified if any sellers list a boat that matches your specific criteria.
You can also consider boats.com as the place to research boats, read reviews, and search for dealer-represented boats. Many trusted experts in the marine industry review boats for boats.com including a library of helpful boat review videos and boats in action on their YouTube channel, which can help you narrow down the models that youre considering.
Is My Boat In Fresh Water Or Salt Water
Barnacles, algae and slime are the bane of boat owners who do their boating in salt water. And even though boats left in freshwater dont have to worry about barnacles, they can still get slimy and grow green beards. If algae slime and algae are a problem, youll want a paint that contains an algaecide such as zinc pyrithione . If you do your boating in freshwater lakes, look for bottom paints designed specifically for freshwater fouling. Why pay for extra protection you dont need?