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Is Your Antique Boat Worth Restoring? Or Should You Replace It?

All of us have different hobbies and that is fine. Some of us are still at the hobby level while others managed to make their hobby into something profitable. Most hobbies we see lately revolve around rebuilding and keeping or reselling old things.

Antiques in all meanings of that word are very valuable and properly restored pieces can reach mind-blowing sums. This does not mean that every piece that is old and demolished and that can be brought to life will fetch you a hefty sum. The story behind the antiques is in general – if there is a story behind it, ifs tied to something or someone important or if it is a famous piece it probably is worth a lot as is or even more if properly restored.

When it comes to restoration, we can restore anything from tables and chairs to guns, cars, paintings, boats, homes and so much more. The pinnacle of the article today is boat restoration and we will tell you what to look at if you are going to buy a boat to restore it, will it be worth it or should you sell it? If you don’t have the skill to restore one on your own, but would like to own one, try antique boat restoration, and this is the place that will also buy antique boats if you have one to sell.

1. Be realistic

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One thing that can make or break your bank whenever this is in question is the factor of realism you as an owner, buyer or restore have towards the boat you are looking to buy or already have and wish to restore. More experienced restorers will not have this issue but there are times that they can make a mistake as well. Those that are boat lovers and are looking to dab into the restoration need to have realistic expectations of that boat, need to realistically appraise the boat they are getting and need to know its history and story. More than or less we had situations where the owners had persuaded themselves that what they own is the best example out there and that it is worth more than it is. This brings you to more investments in it than needed and more time spent working on it than you should. Eventually, all of that will not be able to make a return on your investment and you will be feeling down, disappointed and probably inclined to give up on this passion in total. When you have the right info when you know how to suppress your feelings and when you are realistic you shouldn’t have any issues finding the right gem to restore or seeing a lemon that just isn’t worth your time and should be replaced.

2. Before you buy

Right before you buy a boat for restoration or before you even start the restoration (if you already own it) look around it and look for issues and troubles that the boat has and be prepared to walk away from it. some boats you will travel long distances to see and try to get others will be close, but no matter what the deal is you need to, again, be realistic and see it entirely if you want to make the clearest picture regarding its restoration. If it is bad if it has issues that will be more expensive than it financially can be justified then make sure you walk away and make sure you replace it if you can because it will eat you and you will not be able to make a return on it or even enjoy it if you are restoring it for yourself.

3. Restoration place

Another thing most of us do not think about is the place we will take that boat, car, or furniture to restore. We all have houses, and sheds but when you think about it, the size of the thing being restored is enough. Do you have the tools, the help, and the space you need to make everything work? We usually fly into these projects and miss anticipating these things which ultimately leads us to a halt and makes us either give up or forget about it in total. Having a place to restore your boat is important and given that there are boats the size of the car and bigger you need space so think about that as well.

4. Focus on your skills

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If you are getting a boat to restore you need to focus on yourself and what you are good at. If you are good with welding, steel, aluminium and other similar materials, go for a boat that is in your range. If you are a skilled woodworker then go for wooden boats, which are generally a lot more fun to restore, if you ask me. There are particular skills you will need to restore something like this and the more skills you have and the more things you can do by yourself, rather than outsource elsewhere, the more you will save money and the overall restoration price will be lower. Not to mention the sense of accomplishment at the end which will be immensely bigger.

5. The tricky parts

After everything you can do has been done to the boat, we strongly advise you to use specialists where it makes sense and where the job required is above your skills and knowledge. You will also benefit from them because they might give you info or two regarding your particular project, how good or bad it is and whether will it be worth finishing the restoration or if are you simply better of replacing it or selling it as is.

6. Partner up

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If you have a friend or acquaintance that enjoys boats as much as you do if they are also looking to restore an old boat consider getting them on board and do this as a team. You can have a partner that will work with you or you can have those that will be financial partners funding a part of the project. If you have done this before you know that good restorations take both time and money and if you are strapped for cash look for someone who can jump in that project and help you finish it. if you have the money but need helping hands with jobs you can’t get someone on board as well. In projects like these extra hands are never a bad idea.


Ricardo is a freelance writer specialized in politics. He is with foreignpolicyi.org from the beginning and helps it grow. Email: richardorland4[at]gmai.com