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Just bought my first boat

Discussion in 'Boats and Motors' started by Big_John, May 18, 2017.

  1. Well, I finally decided to buy my first boat, a 1989 Thompson Carrera 220. But now I'm hung up on what to do next. Obviously I want to get out on the water, but I want to make sure I have everything I need before heading. So I'm looking for recommendations from fellow boaters on here in regards to necessary equipment, maybe some tips and tricks, and so on.
    First and foremost I plan on taking a boaters safety course before even putting her in the water. Thanks again all.
  2. Very nice boat, and good luck with it. Make sure you have all the safety gear you need on it, you never have enough, lots of rope and a good anchor. Get a good VHS Marine radio for communication in case of.. and the rest is up to you. We all personalize our boats the way we want them so none are cookie cutter. Again.. good luck and enjoy it.

  3. You need to have enough wearable life vests for everyone on board, a throwable life saver, a flare gun, a fire extinguisher, a noise making device, and...
    Fellas please chime in if I'm forgetting anything...
  4. The orange distress flag.........recommend a first aid kit
  5. and a very good pair of side cutters, they come in real handy when some body puts a hook in your tape,, double battery set up .with a switch over from one battery to the other. and no booze on the boat.
    skywayvett and Gottagofishn like this.
  6. Thank you everyone for your replies. I am definitely itching to get it out and make some memories with the family. The boat does come with a marine radio, new enclosure, and a few life jackets.

    Popspastime - The boat comes with an anchor, just no rope. Safety equipment is a must. Ill be sure to get everything that I need. Hoping to really personalize it once I get the necessities.

    Spike Dog - I hadn't even thought about a throwable life saver. Great idea. I have a fire extinguisher, and I like the idea of a flare gun... just in case.

    Evinrude58 - Ill be sure to add the distress flag and first aid kit. Never know what may happen when your miles from shore.

    Bountyhunter - I didn't even think of having side cutters, hope to never have to dig a hook out, but you never know. The boat does come with 2 batteries and has a switch (don't remember the name of it) to change over from one battery to the next. The fella I got it from says he uses one for auxillary applications and the other for the motor... does this sound correct?
  7. SaltyHD

    SaltyHD A day not fishing won't kill me but why risk it!

    Big John. A throwable flotation device is required. Sounds like he has the batteries set up right with a Perco switch. Run out with switch on both batteries charging, then when you get where your going switch to the accessories battery. Check your bilge that it is operable and if it doesn't have it would definitely put an automatic bilge in as a primary and the one on switch as secondary. If your not familiar navigating the Big lake I would recommend a good FF/GPS unit. Could save you a lot of grief! Hope that helps and enjoy!
  8. Compass! When all else fails it's a cheap investment, buy a good one! Also a note on the throwable..... Make sure it is readily accessible.

    Make sure everyone on the boat knows where everything is located in case of a case.
    Gottagofishn likes this.
  9. Meerkat

    Meerkat Member

    All of the above plus jumper cables. Had a dead starting battery at weather bouy a few years back & was able to jump it from trolling batteries.
  11. Towing Ins not a bad idea if on the big pond good luck have fun be safe
    sherman51 and Overwatchmike like this.
  12. 2nd the insurance! Give Bob a call at Worldwide Marine Insurance! He is the best, hands down!
    Gottagofishn likes this.
  13. sherman51

    sherman51 florida ice fishing

    you took the words right outta my mouth. I have towing insurance with trailer assist. around 100.00 per yr for everything. I had to use mine 2 yrs ago when I crashed the outdrive. saved me 600.00. I called boat us on my cell phone and they did the rest. and the capt of the tow boat put me on a guy that sold me a great used outdrive installed for 800.00, saved our trip. and they pay for jump starts and will bring you oil for the cost of the oil.

    on the anchor rope I recommend getting a electric extension cord reel to store your rope on. I have about 250' to 300' of 5/16 nylon rope and it fits on the reel. but 3/8 rope would be a better option if you anchor a lot for perch fishing. a good fluke style anchor is the best choice.

    I got a signal kit with the gun and flares and hand held flares with the flag and a whistle. never had to use it. I just replace the flairs every 3 yrs. be sure and check the expiration date on the flairs. they should be good for 3 yrs.
    shanewilliamson likes this.
  14. Getting stranded on a boat is a lot different than in a car. Make sure everything is mechanically sound before going out. And a plan to get back in if need be (boat insurance). Always a good idea to have a check list of the minimum equipment you need to leave the dock on hand with you. It's easy to start forgetting things early in the morning with 5 people running around you dying to get out on the water. Can't tell you how many times I've got to the dock and forgot that on key piece of equipment!
  15. All the above is great advice....i will add to never switch your battery selector while the engine is running, your altenator won't like it to well...
  16. Try this link for a handy checklist: or here's the pdf

    Attached Files:

  17. Pick a calm day for first trip. Stay close to shore. Get a feel for your boat. Listen to how it sounds when going at different speeds, making turns, etc. Spend time learning your boat. When on land crawl around and look in every nook and crannie. See where wires run. Check that there are no leaks. Check all thru hull fittings prior to launching and again on the water to make sure they are not allowing water into the boat. on land fill bilge with water and test bilge pump(s). Look at those hoses and fittings when pumping.
    Last edited: May 19, 2017
    Gottagofishn likes this.
  18. Congratulations on your first boat! Here is a video I found from Portage Lakes you may enjoy.
  19. If you can goto a launch mid week and spend a couple of hours launching and retrieving your boat after you have all your safety equipment set. Each time go around the parking lot to also practice backing the boat and trailer. this way you can get comfortable launching and retrieving your boat without other people waiting or yelling at you.
    fastwater and sherman51 like this.
  20. Lots.of good advice from the experienced members. As to your throwable device....attach appx 35' of line so it can be retrieved (& thrown more than once). I use the square cushions with lightweight 1/4" polypropylene rope wrapped around it in my boats. On the mechanical end I would recommend a basic tool kit along with some electrical supplies .....fuses, bulbs, & a small asst. of terminals. Familiarize yourself with the location of any of fuse holders, circuit breakers, & also the primary circuit breaker (or fuses) back at the engine that protect your engine wiring harness. Boats commonly have small electrical issues due to moisture, vibration, & age so it's best to be prepared for the minor issues. On I/O boats I suggest that my customers carry some engine oil, power trim fluid, power steering fluid, & some gear oil to keep the stern drive topped off. I thought the advice provided re: a primary bilge pump on a float switch & also back-up pump was good as well. I trailer to lakes in a 4-5 state area so my spare parts kit is just a little more extensive, but don't overlook your trailer. Make sure that your tires, bearings, lights, bunks, & rollers are all in good condition. Breakdowns on the highway can usually be avoided with good maintenance. Above all....Have Fun & Be Safe !! Mike
    bajuski and Gottagofishn like this.