educate me... just purchased a 230

Discussion in 'Sport Boats' started by cd_indy, Feb 20, 2018.

  1. cd_indy

    cd_indy New Member

    10
    Feb 20, 2018
    Indiana
    '96 Sea Ray 230 Signature
    5.7LX EFI w/ Alpha I
    I just purchased a 1996 230 Signature bowrider with the 5.7efi engine and the Alpha drive - about 500 hrs. It is in excellent condition, and appears to have been well maintained .
    So, what do I need to know? Help me understand the quirks and likely issues I need to be wary of with this boat .
     
  2. Creekwood

    Creekwood Well-Known Member

    Apr 26, 2009
    Oakville and Georgian Bay, Ontario
    '97 330 Sundancer
    2X 454 w/ vDrives
    Congratulations. Nice boats.

    Make sure there is no rot in the deck or stringers. IF you want to see what the inside of the hull looks like and what is involved in fixing the rot, there is a good youtube series by Friscoboater. Here is the start. Hopefully you never have his issues.
     
  3. cd_indy

    cd_indy New Member

    10
    Feb 20, 2018
    Indiana
    '96 Sea Ray 230 Signature
    5.7LX EFI w/ Alpha I
    How do you check the stringers, without tearing open the floor?


     
  4. Boater420

    Boater420 Well-Known Member

    Mar 11, 2015
    Clearwater, FL
    '97 330 Sundancer
    V-Drives
    Westerbeke 4.5BCG
    Twin Merc 454's
    You can drill into the stringers at different locations and take core samples.
     
  5. bobeast

    bobeast Dance the Tide SILVER Sponsor

    524
    Oct 22, 2017
    Isleton, CA
    2002 310DA
    350 MPI w/V-drives
    You can tap them in various places with a small hammer. You should get a solid 'ping'. If you hear a dull thud, be afraid.
     
  6. Creekwood

    Creekwood Well-Known Member

    Apr 26, 2009
    Oakville and Georgian Bay, Ontario
    '97 330 Sundancer
    2X 454 w/ vDrives
    Or a surveyor can do a moisture test on the surface of the deck and stringers that can tell if there is elevated moisture that can indicate potential rot inside. Rot in the deck is obvious. It shows up as soft spots.
     
  7. cd_indy

    cd_indy New Member

    10
    Feb 20, 2018
    Indiana
    '96 Sea Ray 230 Signature
    5.7LX EFI w/ Alpha I
    Great information. thank you

    If there are other things to pay attention to, that are unique to these boats - I'd welcome the additional 'heads up'.
     
  8. Lazy Daze

    Lazy Daze Well-Known Member TECHNICAL Contributor

    Apr 21, 2009
    PA
    Various
    Various
    In '96, that boat changed to using a fiberglass floor - probably one of the reasons they started calling it a 230 instead of a 220. Some Sea Rays of that era also started using composite stringers... but I'm honestly not sure if that boat did, or not. I'm thinking not, since it was "on it's way out" with a new replacement coming out soon.

    As far as "quirks" with that model... there really aren't any to speak of. It was/is a nice, solid boat. From today's standpoint, you may find some saying it's underpowered with 260HP and an Alpha drive... but you know what? I've run that model with 6 adults in it (it's been a while, though) and I don't remember there being ANYTHING performance-wise that made me want for more. Do your due diligence with checking it out and a mechanical survey, but it's a nice boat. Maintenance history would be nice to know. The other way to think about quirks/problems... if there were any, at 22 years old, they certainly would have surfaced by now!

    EDIT: Forget what I said about due diligence, etc... I was speaking as if you were "about" to buy it, not already bought it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2018
    cd_indy likes this.
  9. searay205

    searay205 Member

    52
    Nov 27, 2016
    Houston
    2011 Searay sport
    5.0MPI Catalyst
    DO NOT DRILL INTO YOUR STRINGERS. WHAT A STUPID IDIOTIC IDEA. If they aren't rotted they soon will be with a hole in them. Tap around on the floor, a rotted spot will be obvious it will be soft. If you want a problem someone will find one for you. If the floor is solid its good. Enjoy the boat. I don't know how most people sleep on this forum with all the nightmares they have.
     
    cd_indy likes this.
  10. NorCal Boater

    NorCal Boater Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    Jan 24, 2008
    Covington, LA
    Cobalt CM23
    GM SB 383" Stroker" Alpha Gen I
    If you are really unsure about how to go about this you should do what you should have done pre-purchase....hire a professional Marine Surveyor. It will cost you a few hundred bucks but you will know for sure.

    Not to pick on you cd_indy but for others that are new to purchasing a boat. Before finalizing a deal on a boat, ALWAYS make your offer contingent upon the findings of a professional Marine Surveyor.
     
  11. cd_indy

    cd_indy New Member

    10
    Feb 20, 2018
    Indiana
    '96 Sea Ray 230 Signature
    5.7LX EFI w/ Alpha I
    You are correct, I checked with the factory and '96 230s have all composite stringers.


     

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