What is it?

Discussion in 'All Things Boats & Boating' started by K'ledgeBldr, Oct 29, 2007.

  1. K'ledgeBldr
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    K'ledgeBldr Junior Member

    After wandering aimlessly around this site I noticed this question several times and thought to myself- where do these people come from?
    I'm not trying to insult anyone, but how do you aquire a boat and not know who the manufactorer is? You got a title (or didn't you)? Isn't it on that? The boat should have a VIN# somewhere (I use that term loosely because I know where it is), shouldn't it? Then you could ask for a VIN# check for make, model, stolen, or what ever with local law enforcement, or the local registar's office.
    Is this not plausible? Or am I just listing toward the "you don't know Jack!"
    Thanks- Man on a mission
     
  2. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    HIN's (Hull Identification Number) were mandatory in 1974 in the USA, but previous to that year Lord knows what system a manufacture may have employed. Each had a different numbering system and states also used different systems. Often during repairs, the original manufactures ID plates or serial numbers may have been cut away, puttied over or other wise lost.

    This coupled with very poor state registration standards, can make figuring out what you have extremely difficult. I currently have a 1957 something, according to the title. No manufacture, the length is incorrect and the two different titles I have (one from a previous owner in a different sate) list two different serial numbers.

    These are common headaches on older boats. A good example is small craft under 16', which many states don't require registration at, or if they do, only on powered models. All the thousands of SunFish out there don't have a state registration number affixed to their flanks, nor do canoes, kayaks, small sailboats, row boats, those tourist trap peddle your brains out cats, etc., none of which have state registration, many not even a title, just a bill of sale (if you're lucky).

    To add more confusion to the mixture, many states register the boat by the trailer it rides on, meaning if the trailer is changed out, your screwed come time to sell her.

    Things are changing. States are standardizing methods, numbering systems and procedures to handle certificates of origin, "Z" titles, assigning proper HIN's to boats without them, etc.

    I'm been called countless times to ID a boat. The local county inspector uses me and a few others when he's stumped. Getting a truly accurate ID generally runs about 50% if the boat is 50 years old or less. Older craft, usually have had major revisions and repairs, which can remove and replace the structural elements that a hidden serial number was carved into.

    This is the problem with the 1957 something I have. The keel batten was replaced with the bilge stringers and the manufacture's plate, which was on the dash, is missing. The keel or one of the stringers would have been a typical location for the serial number, which doubled the one on the manufacture's plate. I've been through the boat, literally every square inch and no numbers exist. It looks like an old Rascal, but the transom is wrong, so who knows.
     
  3. K'ledgeBldr
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    K'ledgeBldr Junior Member

    Thanks, I think you covered every possible angle there could be (and the correction on "HIN"). Obviously there is or was no standard among manufactorers, and whoever else needed to get their hand in the cookie jar.
     
  4. safewalrus
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    safewalrus Ancient Marriner

    You got it - and thats just in the States which lets face it is reasonably well organised compared to most! If it's registered yor OK in most places - if it's not then most of the time (apart from a little help from knowlegable guys like PAR) your on your own!
     
  5. skipjackbj
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    skipjackbj Junior Member

    Not all boats have VIN numbers.
    I had a 50 foot Monk/Shain built in 1942. I restored and sold last year.
    The only numbers were carved into it by the builder for the US Navy. and some inlayed numbers on the bridge for the USN number #50042.

    There were 50 of these built for service in one year around Puget Sound.

    My current boat. Designed by Phil Bolger. (Befor he lost his mind and still knew how to design reall hulls...)

    The boat (s) were build in Yokohama Japan. The only idents on the boat is a carved 363 number insde the engine compartment and a small placecard below the steering wheel that reads Built In Japan.

    The Title simply says 1964 "Out O' Gloucester" and the lenth of 30 feet.

    Even the 1964 is not a certainty. Many boats prior to the 1970's had the year sold on the title. Not the year build...

    Link to my Out O' Gloucester restoration page.

    http://www.gloucesterboat.zoomshare.com
     
  6. PAR
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    A 1965 Choy Lee 35' yawl I owned had it's number and net tonnage carved in 4" tall letters on the main mast partners and again in the keel. A 1960 John Atkins 39' box keeler that I'm working on, also has a similar treatment, but on the first heavy deck beam in the cabin. Both well before the HIN requirements. This was typical of bigger yards and manufactures, usually a builders plate and numbers carved in large structural members. Smaller yards, one offs or home builts is generally a crap shoot and design details are the only clues you may have. I once dissembled a small runabout, with know idea of the builder (didn't really care either) just to find the inside of the stem, on the gripe faying surface was a well carved and bedded in Dolfinite number, which did ID the boat.
     
  7. safewalrus
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    safewalrus Ancient Marriner

    Just as a matter of interest WHY do you need to know who or what the boat is?
     
  8. K'ledgeBldr
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    K'ledgeBldr Junior Member

    Not me, re-read my original post. However, I must say it has brought alot of thought provoking responses. Which has me thinking- aren't there several manufacturing Associations that would, or could mandate such protocol? Maybe modeled after something like autos (year, manuf, model, version, serial; etc.)? Or would that be asking too much?
    Or am I just listing again?
     
  9. safewalrus
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    safewalrus Ancient Marriner

    As you said, re-read my post - why?
     
  10. skipjackbj
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    skipjackbj Junior Member

    I think this concern on names and ID is getting a little dryed out.

    I would be more concerned with a serious survey of a boat, its sea worthyness then a scrap of paper saying nothing.
     
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  11. safewalrus
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    safewalrus Ancient Marriner

    Your dead right of course Skippy, but there again there are those who'll never actually use the damn things who just MUST know who put that screw in there!!!
     
  12. Frosty

    Frosty Previous Member

    Why Walrus ---Why?.-- Have you ever owned a boat? obviously not.

    Boats come in all different shapes and sizes there are not two the same. However a profesionally built one is worth considerably more than one that you had built for instance.

    Its like buying a kit car.

    Interestingly Formosa ,Vagabond etc the Tiwanese builders would mould a boat and then have a contract with various family boat fitters that would fit out the boat. Thats why they differed slightly.

    I heard that --Im not 100% on it but it sound feasable.
     
  13. Trevlyns
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    Trevlyns Senior Citizen/Member

    Well guys, I'm pretty much divided on this issue...

    One the one hand, what the hell's in a name? But then, you're out on that dream boat and someone comes up and says, "beautiful boat, what is it?"....
     
  14. safewalrus
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    safewalrus Ancient Marriner

    Trev pretty obvious really its a "boat"!!

    Frosty, what are you drivelling about man? again?
     

  15. skipjackbj
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    skipjackbj Junior Member

    Boat names or Boat names. What ever.
    Just tell them it' B.O A.T.

    Break
    Out
    Another
    Thousand
     
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