Newbie looking for 210 advice

Discussion in 'Newbie Lounge - NEW' started by anapier1, Feb 15, 2018.

  1. anapier1

    anapier1 New Member

    9
    Feb 15, 2018
    Boatless
    Engineless
    Hey guys, new guy here from North Carolina. I have a family of 5 and we currently have a pontoon boat which we have had for 2 years now. We bought it thinking we’d have plenty of room for anyone who wants to come out with us, but after 2 seasons I can count on one hand the times that there have been people other than us onboard.

    Now the kids are in to wakeboarding and love tubing. We’ve been using the wave runner for this, but the wife doesn’t like sitting on the boat while I pull the kids around and she’s trying to look on from a distance. So here’s what I’m trying to do.

    I’ve got about 10k I can spend on something more suitable for us. From what I’ve seen the past few days, a 210 would be a good size for us and have enough power to do what I need. I’ve found several early 2000’s in my price range that look like they are in decent shape. I’m just looking for any advice on buying used. I was looking last night and saw a website that said the most life you’ll get out of a bow rider is 20-25 years, and that got me a little concerned. I know the boats I’m looking at aren’t that old yet, but is there any truth to what they’re saying?

    Any help is much appreciated.
     
  2. Stee6043

    Stee6043 Well-Known Member

    Jun 1, 2015
    West Michigan
    1997 Sundancer 400
    7.4L Gassers
    I'm not sure years of age is the best predictor of life expectancy for things like boats. It's more about the hours and the maintenance.

    If your primary focus will be watersports have you considered other brands as well? I'm not sure the powerplants available on the 210 but pulling a skier with 4 bodies on the boat can be a challenge for some boats. Perhaps look at something more geared toward pulling/towing if that's the primary use?

    My two cents only of course.
     
  3. brewster16

    brewster16 Member

    283
    Aug 9, 2009
    Long Beach Island, N.J.
    '07 44 Sundancer
    Twin Cummins QSC 8.3
    I agree....I think you'll be underpowered trying to tow skiers and tubers with 4 people on board. I'd sell the pontoon and invest in a well maintained bow rider with power.
     
  4. anapier1

    anapier1 New Member

    9
    Feb 15, 2018
    Boatless
    Engineless
    Open to any suggestions you guys have. Only reason I mentioned the 210 is because it’s one of the few I’ve seen in my price range that don’t look beat to death (I have only been looking for a few days). Any specific boats you guys recommend?
     
  5. BillK2632

    BillK2632 Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    Jun 25, 2009
    Lake Norman, NC
    1999 185 Bowrider,
    Mercruiser 4.3, Alpha I
    The smaller SeaRay bowriders are solid boats. My 185 has been a great little boat. I think 10k should get you a nice 185-210, $15k an nice 220 in the 2000-2005 year range. The model numbers in those years were 185, 190, 210, 220, but they are all 19-22ft. You can get the old brochures off searay.com. There is a very nice (I've looked at it) 2003 220 at the marina I keep my boat at, they are asking $19k, figure it might sell for a few $k less. A 185 like mine would be a little less than 10k. Not much to look for other than the cosmetic condition, only wood in those boats is the transom. Engine wise your looking at either a 3.0 4cyl or a 4.3 V6, 220's have a 5.0 V8 as an option, most all will have an Alpha I outdrive. These are all solid engine packages, the 3.0 would not be my choice, look for one with the larger engine. Where do you boat in NC?
     
  6. anapier1

    anapier1 New Member

    9
    Feb 15, 2018
    Boatless
    Engineless
    I have seen several 185’s in my price range, but I was hoping to stay in the 20’ and up range so we wouldn’t be cramped on the rare occasion that we do have friends come along. I found a nice looking 210 on Lake Norman that I’ll post the link to. I haven’t looked at it in person, just looks good from the pictures which I know doesn’t mean much.

    We are on Lake Tillery.
     
  7. anapier1

    anapier1 New Member

    9
    Feb 15, 2018
    Boatless
    Engineless
  8. Lazy Daze

    Lazy Daze Well-Known Member TECHNICAL Contributor

    Apr 21, 2009
    PA
    Various
    Various
    A mid 90's to mid '00's 21' Sea Ray (the general price range you're looking into) with a V8 engine will have no problem pulling tubes/skiis/boards with 4 adults in the boat. You'll be just fine with that. I've been there, done that more times with more boats than I can think of. Heck, I pulled two skiers out of the water with 3 adults in the boat with my '00 180BR (4cyl engine).

    And on the 25-year lifespan? Bullcrap. No such thing. As mentioned above, it's all about how it's been maintained. As far as hours are concerned... even those are somewhat irrelevant... to a point, of course. Proper maintenance is the key.

    FYI, when pulling someone on a tube (or board/ski) with a jet ski, you STILL need to have a passenger on board as your spotter. Which means the ski needs to be rated for 3 people if pulling one tuber or 4 people if pulling 2 tubers. It wasn't clear from what you wrote above if you were doing that, or not.
     
  9. anapier1

    anapier1 New Member

    9
    Feb 15, 2018
    Boatless
    Engineless
    Yea we are very familiar with the boating laws. That has been another issue though that we are trying to resolve. The wife wants more than one kid to be able to tube at a time. I was thinking as long as I got something with a V8 in it I would be ok as far as power went. I also really want to get something fuel injected.

    I was leary of the lifespan idea when I read it, but having never owned anything other than a pontoon, I’m just not sure how and what determines the amount of useful life left in a boat like these with an I/O.
     
  10. Little Ducky

    Little Ducky Well-Known Member

    Jun 5, 2017
    Chattanooga TN/Dickson TN
    1998 SeaRay 290 Sundancer
    Twin EFI 5.0L w/Alpha 1 drives
    Do you trailer your boat or have it at a marina?

    What kind of HP does your pontoon boat have?

    I've seen many pontoon boats on the TN river used in water sports and they look great doing so.
     
  11. BillK2632

    BillK2632 Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    Jun 25, 2009
    Lake Norman, NC
    1999 185 Bowrider,
    Mercruiser 4.3, Alpha I
    Nice, we used to have a house at Lake Tillery - Randall's Ferry. I bought the 185 for our place at Tillery, at Lake Norman now and a little small, currently looking at something a little bigger. Any of these boats would be a perfect size for Tillery. And age means nothing on a well cared for boat.
     
  12. anapier1

    anapier1 New Member

    9
    Feb 15, 2018
    Boatless
    Engineless
    Little bit of both. We have a wet slip that I’ve been leaving the pontoon in since last year but we trailered before that. Ramp is only a 1/4 mile from the house.

    My pontoon has a 90 hp on it and it ain’t doing anything sporty lol. I’m looking forward to something that will do more than 20 mph.
     
  13. anapier1

    anapier1 New Member

    9
    Feb 15, 2018
    Boatless
    Engineless
    Well that answers the main question I had then, just needed some confirmation about the age thing.
     
  14. BillK2632

    BillK2632 Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    Jun 25, 2009
    Lake Norman, NC
    1999 185 Bowrider,
    Mercruiser 4.3, Alpha I
    One other thing, just be aware on an older boat there are maintenance items that will likely need to be addressed if they have not already. On a sterndrive boat the bellows in particular. Even on a trailer or lift kept boat after about 10 years they are getting close to needing replaced. Mine lasted 15yrs. That's @ a $1200 job if you pay to have it done, so on a $10k boat that is a significant maintenance cost. So that is one of the major things I would be looking for on a boat of that vintage in addition to routine maintenance records - and factor that into any $$ offer. Other than I want a larger boat, there is reason for me to get rid of my 185.
     
  15. anapier1

    anapier1 New Member

    9
    Feb 15, 2018
    Boatless
    Engineless
    That’s good to know, I appreciate it. If you think of anything else specific to stern drives like that please let me know. I think I have a good feel of what to look for mechanically. What concerns me most is rot in places that I can’t see or don’t know to look, whether it be wood rot or things like bellows getting old and deteriorating. I see you mentioned the only wood was in the transom, is there a certain year that Sea Ray stopped using wood in other areas (stringers and floor, etc)?
     
  16. scoflaw

    scoflaw Well-Known Member

    Aug 10, 2011
    cape cod mass
    1999 Powerquest legend 260 sx
    502 mpi Bravo 1
    I think for 10k your going to inherit the PO's problems and all his deferred maintenance.

    Myself, I'd throw a deuce on the boat you own.
     
  17. NCCamper

    NCCamper Member

    144
    Jan 20, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    1992 200 BR
    2013 Ford F-150
    5.0 LX w/Alpha 1 - G2
    FYI, we own a '92 200BR with a 5L Alpha I. We boat mainly on Lake Wylie. This boat pulls wakeboarders with ease, and we have had up to 5 people on board while pulling. I sure hope your 20-25 year rule is wrong! It's 2018, and my'92 is still going strong!
     
  18. anapier1

    anapier1 New Member

    9
    Feb 15, 2018
    Boatless
    Engineless
    Thanks for your input. It’s certainly not my rule, just one I had read online and wanted others opinions on.

    I understand that no matter what I do or buy, there are going to be issues that have to be taken care of. I’ve factored that in to my budget as best I could.

    I can’t justify putting any money in to my pontoon. I don’t think there is anything I can do to it (within my budget) that will turn it in to a boat that will do what I want to do.
     

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