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Price seems right but. I have a few concerns (updated)

12 posts in this topic

I'm looking to buy my first boat (although I grew up on and around boats living on a lake) and I've been pricing for about a month and this seems like a great deal

Selling a 1992 Sunbird Corsair with a 3.0 L OMC inboard/outboard engine. The engine is 130 hp, boat is 17 ft. long with new trailer tires and cover. Runs great, and priced well below book value at $1850.



I emailed with a few questions here's the cut and paste because there wasn't much info on the post

How long have you owned the boat and do you know how many owners it has had?

We have owned the boat for a year and to the best of our knowledge we are the third owners.

Are there any known engine problems, does it need a tune-up or anything more pricy?

There are no known engine problems, the boat has a brand new starter, we did not give the boat a tune-up in the year that we owned it, and it ran great the only time we had it on the water this year.

Has it ever been used in salt water?

To our knowledge it has never been used in salt water.

Who has done any maintenance/repairs on the motor and what type?

We do not know of any major repairs done to the motor, the only thing we have done is replace the starter.

What are the hours on the motor? And/or mileage?

I am out of town until Thursday so I do not have that information, but I would guess fairly low since we have not used it much this year and the previous owner did not use it much in the last few years he owned it.

How has the boat been stored? Winter/summer?

In the year that we have owned the boat it was shrink wrapped and winterized, and then we have stored it at our house under a new cover that we bought and will include with the boat.

How is the interior any rips tears?(more than likely at the seams at almost 20 years old) pics of interior would be great if you have them

The interior has had normal wear and tear, there are a few small rips but no gaping holes or bad tears.

Are there any unlisted accessories that come with it? (ie anchor vests...)

We will include an anchor, ski rope, a paddle, and a small tool kit that we keep in the boat.

What type of trailer is included? What year? Any maintenance or repairs needed?

It is a standard galvinized boat trailer that is the same year as the boat, a 1992, and it has brand new tires. There are no repairs or maintenance needed to the trailer to the best of our knowledge.

What kind of canvass does it have? (Mooring cover, trailer cover, bimini top, etc.)? any rips or holes (again any pics would be great.)

We will send a pic of the boat with a cover, it is brand new this year.

Is it available for a water test? (if not engine run with hose)

I don't believe it will be available for a test, we recently started it in the yard to make sure it was running fine and the only time we had it out on the water it ran great. We priced it low to sell it quickly with the understanding that the buyer would be able to inspect it before buying but that at this time of year doing a water test would be more difficult and with my husband working out of town it makes it hard to arrange anything.

Was winterization done by you or a marina? What steps were taken in winterizing?

We had the winterization done by a local boat shop and had no issues this spring. It is not diffucult and I would recommend having it done at a shop as it is not that expensive.

The main thing that concerns me is the trailer age if it was taking care of it should be fine but if not at 16 years old it would be a major concern. the other thing is not being able to take it out for a test on the water but I would be able to fire up the engine. I also sent an email this morning asking why they are selling and I'm still waiting on that.

Can anyone else think of any questions that I would want to ask or things that I may not think of if I go to check it out I'll probably check the compression on motors and all the normal stuff that would be checked out. I'm also not very familiar with sunbird so if anyone has any info that would be great (are there any problems that are known to be had.)

Info from NADA

Boats and Personal Watercraft


CORSAIR 175(**)

Stern Drive Power Boat

Length: 17'

Model Name/Description: CORSAIR 175(**)

Boat Type: Stern Drive Power Boat

Hull Material: Fiberglass

Beam: 6' 11"

Engine: 1

130 HP


Net Weight: 1980

Base Price

Low $2,280 Avg. $2,550

It's listed as $1850 would an offer of $1500 be to low

Thanks to everyone in advnace

I just got the update on why they are selling and they are moving to a place that they will not have easy/close access to water.

which to me is the reason for a cheap price and another reason to be able to talk the price down.

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It’s the ago old question of something only being worth what someone else will pay.

It looks like it’s in good shape, looks can be deceiving.

Even in excellent shape, that is going to be tough boat to sell this time of year and you should be able to get a good deal on it.

Not being able to water test it would concern me though. Not necessarily that something is wrong with it, but I still think it needs to be water tested.

Maybe you could make it a contingency of the deal that you are allowed a couple hrs to water test it. If it doesn’t meet your expectations you can return it.

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I would not worry about the trailer, especially since galv.

I would want to water test it myself. At least get the contact info on where it was winterized or tuned up and give them a call, though my guess is they may not remember it if just a quick winterization.

It looks nice, and really isn't that old in "boat years", but like dtro said, a boat that age is worth what someone will pay for it. You just don't want to have repairs right out of the chute...

Good luck!

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I would say a water test is a must for sure. I've been skunked on that before. Tell them you'll make a copy of your Drivers License and leave it with them or some other info that shows them where you live and you will sign paper saying you are testing it and will bring it back. I would never buy a boat without testing it in the water first.

Maybe have a mechanic check out the motor as well and check the hull very well. Make sure to check the bottom for wear or holes in it.

Darrin is right, it's hard to sell this time of year. They should work with you if you are serious about picking it up.

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I agree with the other's sentiments. I would not be concerned about the trailer since it's galvanized. With respect to corrosion you're better off that it's galvanized than painted.

I would want to water test it as well. The low price makes me a bit leary about the mechanical end of things.


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I just got the update on why they are selling and they are moving to a place that they will not have easy/close access to water.

which to me is the reason for a cheap price and another reason to be able to talk the price down.

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Still talk them into a test drive first. Tell them you are willing to pull it to the water and back even if don't take it. YOu have to make sure that motor does good under a load and the boat doesn't leak. Will also let you know how all the electrical stuff is working.

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Hard to pass up a bargain, but you don't want to get burned either.

At the very least, can you get a mechanic to look it over? If so, what's the big deal of pulling it to the lake for a spin?

I didn't do that when I bought mine of hsolist. Ended up needing to rebuild the carbs due to lack of use. I could have gotten a better price if I would have known.

Good luck

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The engine and drive absolutely need to be inspected and test run. Even with a test ride you really can't tell if there is problems with the drive. With the lower unit trimmed up take a look and feel of the bellows for a split. Open the drain on the lower unit to see if water comes out. Or better yet, take it to an I/O mechanic.

You can do an inspection of the hull. Look for cracks or soft spots. Open up anything(hatches and inspection covers) that will let you look under the deck. Open the engine cover. Is there any oil in the bilge? Is everything neat and wiring tidy?

Test the trim.

$1850 is a relatively cheap boat. Any repairs to the drive will make this not a cheap boat any longer.

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Unless you are very familiar with the lake you plan to do the test drive, I would recommend they bring you to a lake they are familiar with (hopefully close by) and do it with you.

A lot of lakes are pretty low around here, not sure about where you are at. If you are not familiar with the lake, you do not want risk hitting something with the lower unit/prop during the test drive. It is not too uncommon that hazard spots are not marked with buoys.

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This boat is at the perfect age for floor rot, especially if it's the original floor. It's also one of the biggest reasons that you see boats priced cheap. Not suggesting that it has it, but we stay busy 12 months a year replacing floors in boats that seemed like a really good deal at the time. That sounds so negative, sorry. I just hate having to tell a customer that the boat they just bought is going to need a $1,000 dollar floor replacement. Take a thin phillips screwdriver or scratch awl along and poke it into the floor, especially at the back corners and between the consoles. (don't worry, it wont cause any damage to the carpet). If it feels solid, I'd schedule a test drive and get ready to own a boat. If it goes through, then at least you know before you've signed on the dotted line.

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