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 Used boat buy, Bayliner or Crownline ??

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T O P I C    R E V I E W
timstiles Posted - Jun 08 2008 : 02:51:55
Hi all,

I'm looking at 2 boats and having trouble deciding between them.

Boat # 1 is a 2001 Bayliner 215BR with 5.7L and Merc Alpha 1 outdrive

Boat #2 is a 2001 Crownline 202BR with a fuel injected 5.0L Volvo Penta setup

Boat 2 is $3000 more than boat #1. But I could also buy a Crownline 2-3 years older for the same price as the bayliner.

The bayliner is for sale at a boat dealer and was traded in on new Ski Supreme. The dealer showed me the paperwork and they are putting $1800 into this boat for a 100 hour service, replacing the starter, and replacing a hydraulic pump so they are being firm on their price. The mechanic was working on it when I stopped by so I know they aren't pulling my leg.

I'd love to hear any feedback on the 2 manufacturers and any comments on the Volvo Penta setup vs. the Mercruise to factor into my buying decision. Thanks in advance!

13   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
dkjbama Posted - Jun 09 2008 : 20:07:03
Originally posted by mrknowitall

Regarding the Bay... I bet the previous owner launched it without putting the drain plug in; Just my opinion.

I agree. With both the starter and the trim pump needing replacement, it's certainly conceivable that the boat has been flooded, probably only a foot of water or so. So one question is, was it a forgotten plug like knowitall said, or did it fill up with rainwater. The important question is how long was that water there? Forgotten plug: probably no more than 30 minutes; rainwater: could be a day or it could be a year.I would check the stringers carefully for water intrusion. People do weird things to boats.
mrknowitall Posted - Jun 09 2008 : 18:20:27
Regarding the Bay... I bet the previous owner launched it without putting the drain plug in; Just my opinion.

Goat Locker Posted - Jun 08 2008 : 20:04:33
After only having volvo penta setups IMHO I would still by the boat that you like the best. I have had two boats with 5.0's and when talking with everyone about merc's I am getting better mileage.....if you can ever say a boat gets good mileage. Good luck and hope you enjoy!!!!

The Goat Locker
Regal 3060
MikeeH Posted - Jun 08 2008 : 19:11:44
Well, having just returned from testing the US Marine 2008 line-up as well as touring the factory in NC I need to jump-in with an opinion based on what I saw and experienced.

IMO Bayliners are built just as well as any other production boat with the exception of the high end boats like Formula, Tiara, etc. The hulls are built exactly the same as a SeaRay of like size. The less expensive and smallest Bay's do have plywood decks which are fabricated from a high grade marine plywood and carpet covered just as most bassboats are built. Not my favorite configuration but far less expensive that an encapsulated plywood and gelcoated deck which keeps the cost down, allowing many people to get into boating who may not have had the opportunity otherwise. I'd buy a current model Bayliner of 19' or better without hesitation. However, if you research older models from just about any manufacturer you'll find some bad ones so you need to judge each vessel on its own merit.
LouC Posted - Jun 08 2008 : 19:01:05
I'd be a little concerned about that $1800 service on the Bayliner, yes it's good the dealer is doing the work, but was that work necessary because the boat was neglected? I'd want to know if you can see service records for either one of these boats. I/O boats in particular need a lot of maintenance and if it's neglected, the bills can pile up in a hurry. I'd wait till the work is done on the Bayliner, sea trial both and see which one you like better, and/or which one seems to have been cared for better. And I agree with the point about plywood decks covered with carpet, I would not buy a boat with them, ever again. They are a recipe for rot unless the boat is stored inside when not used. After sea trialing them, get your own surveyor to look at both. As far as depreciation, I agree that you should buy what you like, they will all depreciate, the only way to beat that to an extent is if you buy a Whaler or Grady, or some other brand with a longstanding rep for good quality and performance. $3000 in boating dollars over the time you will own it is really not a lot of money, if you like the pricer one that much more. You will then keep it longer and not have to suffer the cost of upgrading as soon.
pdecat Posted - Jun 08 2008 : 17:38:32
I had a crownline. it too had carpet covered plywood deck in the cockpit. IMO regardless of brand none of the decks last long with carpet if exposed to weather so check carefully for rot.
Doc Posted - Jun 08 2008 : 16:22:42
I had a small Bayliner once. POC. Non marine plywood floors, cabinets that flew open, poor joinery and a hull that tin canned. I don't know about Crownline but I have a feeling anything is better. Your opinion may vary form mine but I can't help the fact that I was born narrow minded and never got any better.
gcolton Posted - Jun 08 2008 : 15:38:57
Why would you let "Holds it value better" be the determining factor. This is like the people who base the automobile decisions on depreciation.

Depreciation is a fact of life on virtually anything. When you are dealing with boats and automobiles the main criteria in my mind is initial cost, operating cost, performance and just how well I like the boat/car. Does it ride well, perform as you like, seats comfortable, look OK, etc. These are the important things. Depreciation is something that years later when it is time to sell that you are glad was low or sad it was high.

I have a friend who was bragging about how he bought a vehicle because it had low depreciation. I asked him just how well that depreciation rode.

MIke F Posted - Jun 08 2008 : 13:31:07
A good way to check on which is the better deal is to compare the depreciation of both boats--The one that holds its value better may be the overall better deal. Of course I am assuming the boats are equal values in terms of the previous owners upkeep and treatment of the boat etc.
Veg Posted - Jun 08 2008 : 09:54:29
On outdrive boats, I have a strong preference for Volvo over Merc. That alone would be a big factor for me.

The engine setup is a little neater, with the raw water impeller right there on the front of the engine block, the filters are right side up so easy to remove with no spills, the flushing hook-up right at the block is convenient, and the Volvo outdrives seem to hold up just a bit better in terms of paint finish and corrosion issues. Mechanics I've talked to say when taken apart the Volvo outdrives seem to be put together better.

MikeeH Posted - Jun 08 2008 : 09:29:51
Yep, as both said above, pick the boat that most appeals to your needs and wants and then make your best deal.
gcolton Posted - Jun 08 2008 : 06:53:12
Boating in many (most?) ways is a very personal matter. What appeals to one person often is a negative to another. Without seeing the boats I could not tell whether I like one or the other.

As far as one manufacturer vs the other is concerned I would have no qualms about either one. Either one would be OK. I have never owned a crownline but have owned two bayliners for a total of about 18 years.

Flutterby Posted - Jun 08 2008 : 06:04:32
Buyers have all the power in today's market. Decide on a low price and make an offer. If either says "No", just walk away and keep looking. Tons of boats for sale out there. One of the sellers might come around or you might find a better boat for the price you want to pay!

Good luck.

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