So last summer (2021) we found ourselves without a boat. I bought my first in 2005. And there was a period when I had three boats, on two lakes. The time before last when we found ourselves without a boat, in 2016, we went a whole 6 days until we acquired a replacement.
So we were depressed as it was June and the Independence day celebrations were coming up. So we drove hundreds of miles locally looking at every pontoon boat in 75 miles in any direction. After a few days of that we saw an add on Facebook for a great-looking 20′ pontoon boat – but almost 300 miles away in Covington Georgia. We sent a message, and then exchanged text messages, and then had a phone call. We were told that they’d hold the boat until the next day at 4 pm. Then they had another person, locally, who had scheduled to see the boat.
The next morning we began the long drive with a stop at our local credit union to pick up a certified check in the amount requested – as it didn’t seem likely that after driving 300 miles the current owner would negotiate. Thanks to GPS we got there as quickly as the Interstate speed limits would allow, looked over the boat, watched them start the motor, and talked with the owner. The boat was in great condition, and he was selling it for his brother-in-law, who had bought a bigger (24′) pontoon.
We handed over the check, signed the paperwork, and began the long drive home towing the boat behind us for 8 hours, off the Interstate highway system, on 2 and 4-lane backroads, east and then north.
Long story short, in July 2021 we took the boat out 3 times before the motor stopped dead on the other side of the lake. Luckily Nancy’s son and family were out on the water for the holiday week, and they came to find us, and tow us back to our boat slip.
Longer story short, after 3 mechanics attempted to fix it, the 2nd called in an expert on Honda marine motors who inspected the 90 hp engine and declared that it had been assembled from a multitude of parts from older motors, and was probably not fixable.
As that story differed from what we had been told (oh yeah, caveat emptor – let the buyer beware) by the owner of Lane Body Shop & Marine, 12247 Flat Shoals Rd, Covington, GA 30016, United States, +17707867405.
He told us that it was in great shape. But we were only able to take it out 3 times before the motor, which wasn’t in “GREAT SHAPE” completely gave out on us.
We’ve called his shop – explained the situation – and were told that he’d call us back. That’s been 3 weeks now. His time is up.
So – were still waiting on his call back – and an explanation of the discrepancies in what he told us and what we’ve subsequently discovered.
Caveat Venditor – let the seller beware.