Among many shipyards there is a tacit division of their boats, namely — for experienced owners and for beginners. As a rule, those who come for a new boat not for the first time have quite a clear idea of what they want to get from a new boat, for what purposes they buy it and what characteristics it should have. As for newbies, their experience on the water is minimal, and they are more focused on the visual component of the boat.
You will probably come across a whole wagon of advice about what the hull, seaworthiness or engine should be. But there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all boat! Everyone makes a choice based on their needs. Here’s a list of features you should definitely consider before buying your first boat.
For what purposes do you need a boat?
Are you planning to go out fishing on a boat with a group of friends or alone? Then a boat with a shallow draft will suit you if it’s fishing in shallow water, or on the contrary, you need a boat with high sides if you plan to cast a fishing rod in the open sea. And you also need compartments for storing fish and fishing gear.
Or would it be water-ski or wakeboard tugboat? Then the priority here is speed and the ability to supplement the boat with the necessary equipment.
A boat for family outings has completely different requirements. These are cabins with berths, a dining table with a kitchen, and full-fledged amenities on board.
Choice of boat type
The next question is where exactly you will walk: the sea, rivers, canals or lakes. If it’s calm waters, you can pay less attention to this point. But if we are talking about the sea, this question is one of the key ones. First you need to visually assess the boat: it should have a high side, a less flat bottom and a narrower bow. It is the kind of boat that will be ideal for sea conditions.
The more speed the boat can develop, the more distinctly the hull has a V shape. In this case, it will glide smoothly over the waves, rather than crashing against every crest, and this ensures that you in turn will not catch snacks and drinks falling from the table.
The material for the boat is another important element. As a rule, very small boats, 3-4 meters long, can have a solid bottom and inflatable sides made of Hypalon. Larger boats are mostly available in fiberglass. This material allows you to give the hull modern contours and a spacious living space. It is also very light, so the boat can reach high speeds.
Aluminum boats are more durable than fiberglass boats, but they make much more noise during transitions and are not as comfortable. The steel hull is considered the most durable, but requires a lot of attention, as it is prone to corrosion and is very inferior in its speed characteristics. However, if you are going to winter fishing or search for whales in northern latitudes — this boat will be just perfect.
Boat size and number of cabins
A small boat up to 7 meters will be suitable for a company of 4 people for a few hours boat trip. Long journeys with a large company involve boat from 10 meters and having a full bathroom with amenities, kitchen and dining area.
The number of cabins on board is also an individual criterion. But it is desirable for each family member to have a full-fledged berth in the cabin.
This is just a small list of things to pay attention to. Also be sure to study the technical part, for example, engine type and fuel consumption, water reserve and autonomy — in the end, of course, this will form the amount of expenses for the maintenance of the boat. Even if you are not sure about some things, make a list of your inquiries and yachting industry professionals will be able to pick up perfect boat just for you.