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Digital Subscriptions > Cottage Life > May 2018 > TO REDO OR NOT TO REDO

TO REDO OR NOT TO REDO

Q:Should you bring your old boat back from the brink?

A: Yes! Okay, maybe. We break down the costs.

“I WISH I HAD A DOLLAR FOR EVERY BOAT THAT COMES IN AND SMELLS LIKE A MOUSE NEST ”

*Our model is a 20-foot Grew that was in remarkable condition after 50 years. The local marina had already rebuilt the transom and replaced the outdrive, the engine, and the steering controls when the current owner purchased it in 2017. The work and prices estimated in this story are loosely based on a boat of similar size.

That’s Todd Koroll, the general manager at Vector Yacht Services, based in Sidney, B.C., talking about lifting the engine hatch and sticking his nose inside. Chances are the boat has been sitting in a boathouse—or a mouse-infested barn—for a decade. Someone thought the boat was a good deal, and now they need to fix it up. Or the boat belonged to Granddad and holds decades of happy memories, but it needs work. Is it really worth the time, trouble, and money?

“It comes down to how old the boat is, how good the quality was originally, and how available the parts are to replace,” says Mark Bruckmann of Bruckmann Yachts in Mississauga, Ont. “Cottage boats are like workboats. Kids drive them, and they pull skiers, and they run back and forth to the marina. If it were me with a cottage boat, I would want it to be reliable from an engine point of view and safe structurally. If the floor, stringers, and transom are still sound, and there are no structural safety issues, then the last consideration is cosmetics. You can’t fix it up cosmetically and have the whole thing rotten underneath.”

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About Cottage Life

Start fresh for a new cottage season with the May issue of Cottage Life! The dos and don’ts of natural shorelines How to love your old boat instead of listing it, and how much upgrades and fixes will cost A DIY project to update the sign on your cottage road Pro tips on building a bunkie The inspiring story of cottagers who rebuilt after a forest fire destroyed their cabin Why flood plain maps are essential—and outdated Design ideas from a redone super-cute trailer How innovations in car design and technology can put us on the road to a greener, faster, easier weekend commute Plus, recipes for grilling impressive (yet surprisingly easy) large cuts of meat, such as prime rib, pork shoulder, a whole chicken, and a leg of lamb—yes, please! Pick up the May 2018 issue of Cottage Life for everything you need to get your cottage in shape for summer.