Looking to buy 80s Aqua Lark

Discussion in 'Powerboats' started by Joe Go, Jun 18, 2020.

  1. Joe Go
    Joined: Jun 2020
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    Location: Irvine

    Joe Go Junior Member

    Hey fellow boaters Joe Go here. Im new to this site. I own a couple of jet skis but my health hasn't been good lately enough to ride. So I'm thinking about buying an 80s something speed boat. It's advertised as 80s Aqua Lark speed boat with 30hp outboard motor. Maybe used like 10 hours all original. It even has the windshield attached. Also has the original reddish rust color. Pictured below I can get it for like half of what its worth. Let me know if it's worth my time buying? I know they are rare so parts are hard to come by. Or just a head ache? If I will be able to have someone still service it still? Out here in So-California. Or do they have outboards I can easily service my self. Thanks 00B0B_gM7TzJDTREF_07K0bC_1200x900.jpg
     
  2. ondarvr
    Joined: Dec 2005
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    Location: Monroe WA

    ondarvr Senior Member

    Parts for a boat are rarely available, even when new. Thats because the actual parts made by the manufacturer are just the fiberglass portions, the rest is after market stuff.

    All other components, steering, cleats, brackets, gauges, etc, are from other vendors. These parts, or similar ones may still be available.

    The motor is much newer than the boat, so probably not bad.

    Before seeing the pic I would have told you to run away quickly from anything made in the 80s, but it looks much better than expected.

    Even being in good shape the value is low, and not knowing if the transom and stringers are rotten means there's no way to estimate the value.
     
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  3. bajansailor
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: Barbados

    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

    Welcome to the Forum Joe.
    You said :
    "I can get it for like half of what its worth" - who decided how much it is worth, you or the seller?
    How much is this figure?
    The boat is basically worth what somebody is prepared to pay for it - if nobody wants it, then it has very little effective value.
    What is the make / model of the outboard motor?
    As Ondarvr mentions above, the structure is the most important thing to check on an old boat - it might not have been used much, but there is a possibility that water could still get into the timber core of the transom over time.
     
  4. Joe Go
    Joined: Jun 2020
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    Location: Irvine

    Joe Go Junior Member

    These boats are going for like 5000$ still fixed up and running. So that's how I figured their worth. Just the hulls alone are selling for like 650-700$. The one pictured is in really great shape according to the picture. You guys are right. I won't know until I see it in person. To see how damaged the hull is from sitting, and how the engine is mounted and runs also look for corrosion or damage. Hopefully it's all there and not too damaged. Which looks all original from the picture. So I don't have to search for parts if I do decide to buy it. Going to see it this weekend. 2500$
     
  5. ondarvr
    Joined: Dec 2005
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    Location: Monroe WA

    ondarvr Senior Member

    $2,500 is more than triple what its worth in old the boat market (hull only)

    There are a few designs and models that demand a slightly higher price.
     
  6. Joe Go
    Joined: Jun 2020
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    Location: Irvine

    Joe Go Junior Member

    Well you snooze you lose. Contacted the seller and he sold it already. To a buyer who drove from Vegas to Orange County CA to pick it up. So I guess it was worth the drive and money for that buyer. Im on the hunt still, going to keep on looking. Who knows might get lucky and find one with an in board jet ski motor.
     
  7. Joe Go
    Joined: Jun 2020
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    Location: Irvine

    Joe Go Junior Member

    00B0B_4vZin5cMHD2_1200x900.jpg Well what do you know. I found another one with an in board jet ski motor. All white no trim with a blower exhaust pipe. Looks super fast. Reached out to the seller waiting for an answer still. 00g0g_bicNYEPlvQM_0CI0lM_1200x900.jpg
     

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  8. bajansailor
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: Barbados

    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

    Good luck, that is a very neat wee boat - and she looks like she would be pretty fast, like a jet ski.
    What size engine does she have? The older Yamahas are 700 cc, the newer ones are 1100 cc (4 cylinder) and 1050 cc (3 cylinder).
    She appears to even have the same water spout on the back like the jet skis!
     
  9. Joe Go
    Joined: Jun 2020
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    Location: Irvine

    Joe Go Junior Member

    I think it has an 800 Rotax Seadoo engine in it. It's about 40-50 miles from where I live.
     
  10. kapnD
    Joined: Jan 2003
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    Location: hawaii, usa

    kapnD Senior Member

    I don’t think you’ll find an enclosed small runabout to be better suited ergonomically than a jet ski.
    Getting in and out of the thing will be a contortionist trick, and bouncing around in it invites injury.
    A jet ski allows a much more natural use of ones body parts to hang on and move with the machine, as well as being much more nimble and responsive to controls.
     
  11. Ike
    Joined: Apr 2006
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    Location: Washington

    Ike Senior Member

    The Aqua Lark and many other similar boats were very popular in the early 80's before the Jetski and other PWCs came along. The Coast Guard even has a regulation that was written specifically for the horsepower rating for these boats. We called them Thrill Craft, but the name never really caught on. Disney had a fleet of Aqua Larks for a while but they only put 9.9hp engines on them. $5000 is just plain crazy, even $2500 is nuts. On Fiberglassics.com they encounter these frequently. I've seen them on there for a few hundred dollars (not including the engine) In 1986 I went to Oshkosh WI, to the Mercury Marine Racing division and tried out a Cougar Cub (a similar boat to the Aqua Lark) with a 35 HP O/B on one of their test courses. It was a blast but a little squirrely in the turns. There are plenty of theses still around and I've seen them advertised on Craigslist frequently. Enjoy.

    PS: with that water jet engine it should be great fun and it eliminates one of the real problems with these little boats, the prop!. People got thrown out of these a lot, and then they would circle around and come back and hit the person in the water. Make sure it has a kill switch lanyard, and of course you don't have to worry about the prop.
     
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  12. cp325
    Joined: Jul 2020
    Posts: 13
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    Location: crown point,in

    cp325 Junior Member

    I too have an 80's aqua lark that I have owned for at least 20 yrs.it is a ride on that has never been on the water or registered.it has no data plate,build plate or manufacturers identification or screw holes like it ever did.it was badly oxidized when I got it and the upper decals were badly faded.I just recently finished the restoration with a 25hp johnson and can't wait to get it on the water.just thought some of you would be interested in chatting about these rare gems.craig
     

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  13. Joe Go
    Joined: Jun 2020
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    Location: Irvine

    Joe Go Junior Member

    Thanks for all your replies fellow boaters. Sorry for not responding back. Was waiting for an answer back from the seller. Trip out, Well sold my jetskis last week. This week as in today. The seller with the white boat with seadoo motor finally reached back to me. It's available still. We are communicating on offer up app instead of Craigslist. Thought he sold it because I never heard back from him until until today. Maybe it's meant to be. What should I offer him for it? Trying to set up a time tomorrow to see it. Comes with trailer also.
    Some of you say it's not worth it, at 5000$ Saw some videos on YouTube and it looks fun to ride around in. Especially on rivers. Let me know.

    Cp325 that's a nice little boat. Last time I saw one of those was in Laughlin NV like 20 years ago. Lake Mojave. The guy who owned it was hauling *** in it around the lake and coves. Bitching lil boat. You will have so much fun packed in that lil red rocket.
     
  14. Joe Go
    Joined: Jun 2020
    Posts: 9
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    Location: Irvine

    Joe Go Junior Member

    What should I offer him for it? Finally got a response back today. Includes trailer also.
     

  15. cp325
    Joined: Jul 2020
    Posts: 13
    Likes: 1, Points: 3
    Location: crown point,in

    cp325 Junior Member

    thanks joe,I would sell you mine for $7,000.00 you would be hard pressed to find another or nicer one,craig
     
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