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#11032514 - 08/10/15 10:55 AM Long waits for boat repair
Razorback Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 08/31/01
Posts: 3433
Loc: Tyler, TX, USA
Why do we seemingly accept that it takes so long to get our boats and motors repaired?

I took my boat to the repair shop I have been using for the last few years Saturday morning. They told me it would be at least 3-1/2 weeks before they could look at it. I told them I was sorry, but I can't wait that long.

I started using them because the last shop I went to had my boat for almost two months for a lower unit job. After more than six weeks of them telling me they were waiting for parts...after all, according to them they have to come from Japan...I asked how they were being delivered, by row boat? There are these new fangled things called airplanes, and almost anything can be delivered overnight from anywhere in the world.

None of us would take our cars or trucks in and accept not getting them back for a month or two, so why do we let boat and motor repair shops get away with it? Goodness knows we pay enough money for repairs. It seems to me like shops need to hire more people.

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#11032547 - 08/10/15 11:05 AM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: Razorback]
Bruce Allen Online   content
Extreme Angler

Registered: 06/11/06
Posts: 1803
Loc: Emory, Texas
Perhaps if you were the first boat brought to them then you would get prompt service.

One of the things we all complain about (not on here though LOL) is that I had my boat there first and they did some newer boat ahead of me. I believe, except for a few exceptions, that they do them in the order of first in first out.

An exception might be a traveling pro needed boat repairs asap, or someone who has bought their last five boats from that dealership, or they are waiting for parts.

If when you took your boat in was there a bunch of boats already in their parking lot? Should they just make yours the priority. Would you want that to happen to you?

There are a few boat mechanics that will come to you. Even then because they do not have a shop they usually have to order all parts which takes times and a return trip.
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#11032596 - 08/10/15 11:17 AM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: Razorback]
fish 4 5 Offline
Angler

Registered: 10/12/10
Posts: 489
Loc: Flower Mound, TX
I have to give a shout out for excellent service at Cabellas in Ft Worth. I broke my lower unit on a Sunday and had the boat back on Thursday the same week. I took it in again this morning for an issue with the shifter, and I was on my way in less than 1 hour. Even hooked up their computer for a quick check for any codes, etc... They have always been outstanding!
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#11032619 - 08/10/15 11:24 AM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: Razorback]
Wayne McLean Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 02/12/03
Posts: 1088
Loc: Arlington, Tx USA
The problem with most smaller, independent shops is keeping enough good help year round. They get overwhelmed in the early spring through summer, and then don't have enough work in the winter and have to lay people off.

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#11032624 - 08/10/15 11:25 AM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: Razorback]
Lou r Pitcher Online   content
Extreme Angler

Registered: 10/06/05
Posts: 1675
Both marine motors and boats still are being supported by the independent owned dealer sales and service business model. It is an inefficient and costly way of doing business and you are seeing that it is in the early stages I believe of being dismantled, discontinued and will be replaced.

We used to have neighborhood mom and pop TV/Appliance stores in the back of every one was a Tv/Appliance service bench guy. They are mostly all gone in favor of big box stores and when service is needed regional or national service centers have been built and now are staffed and run by manufacturers such as Sony and LG or partnered with to deliver warranty service such as with Best Buy. During the 80s and 90s I helped transition Sony's professional products sales and service from hundreds of small dealerships over to national sales and service facilities. The 200+ independently owned mom&pop Sony dealers, once with ~1000 techs now are mostly today out of business.

Soon most all boat and motor sales will also not by performed by local mom and pop dealers but by more efficient national based chains....for example Bass Pro Shops just recently purchased Ranger Boats. There will be more buying and partnering announcements in the coming months.

Engine and Boat Service will before long be performed by direct manufacturer paid employees at these chains with Mercury, BRP even having their own techs located in the service bays of Bass Pro Shops, Gander Mountain, Cabella's and other chains conveniently located throughout the U.S.

You hopefully will not have to go to a local independent dealer that cannot make enough to afford to staff, train and have the needed parts to properly support his business.



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#11032803 - 08/10/15 12:12 PM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: Razorback]
buda13 Offline


Registered: 07/02/04
Posts: 16518
Loc: NRH, TX
Here's what I don't get... if the shop is 3 weeks back logged, why cant I be put on a list and bring my boat back in 3 weeks? Why must it stay there sitting outside in their yard waiting to be worked on? If both motors are still running I can at least fish during the waiting time.
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#11032828 - 08/10/15 12:17 PM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: Razorback]
Bobby Milam Online   content
Extreme Angler

Registered: 07/13/14
Posts: 1989
Loc: Arlington
how many auto repair shops do you see in a day? Now how many boat repair? cars are year round and boats are generally seasonal. Also, I can get a car part on almost rvery street corner. If I need a motor part, I have to order it.

Why do we let them get awah with it? You don't have to. You could order parts and repair it yourself which is what I do. Otherwise, you accept what you are getting. Sure they could hire more techs but that eats into overhead. If they don't make it then they close and then what would you do

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#11032905 - 08/10/15 12:41 PM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: Razorback]
Jobucko Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 06/06/11
Posts: 77
I can understand the wait as this is a very seasonal business in most parts of the country. As previously stated I don't understand why I can't schedule my boat for routine maintenance in advance and just drop the boat off the day before they are ready to work on it instead of having it sit in their yard for 3-4 weeks when I could be using it.

I have seen where at least one Houston dealer has implemented and express lane for routine maintenance. I believe they promise same day service.

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#11032958 - 08/10/15 01:05 PM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: buda13]
Ted Martin Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 07/26/05
Posts: 1145
Loc: Dallas, TX
Originally Posted By: buda13
Here's what I don't get... if the shop is 3 weeks back logged, why cant I be put on a list and bring my boat back in 3 weeks? Why must it stay there sitting outside in their yard waiting to be worked on? If both motors are still running I can at least fish during the waiting time.


that used to drive me crazy.

last time i went to Rockwall Marine though they gave me a date to bring my boat in, so it didn't sit out there forever. My appointment came up on a monday and i picked it up Weds afternoon. I don't know if that is the standard practice for them now or just because they had a large backlog at the time, but i like storing my boat in my garage while it is waiting in line - its not sitting out there in the sun/rain every day for weeks on end.

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#11032974 - 08/10/15 01:13 PM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: Razorback]
SkeeterRonnie Online   happy
Pot stirrer

Registered: 02/25/03
Posts: 52446
Loc: Forney TX
It sits outside without battery charges.. Battery goes dead and can't be brought back to life.. And you get a "sorry, not our fault"..
Been there! I chose very carefully who works on my boat now!
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#11032975 - 08/10/15 01:13 PM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: Razorback]
Mark Perry Online   content


Registered: 01/09/04
Posts: 48450
Loc: Point Reyes
More boats than boat repair shops out there. They ain't making you wait because they enjoy doing so. They are just taking care of customers in the order they receive them.
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#11032977 - 08/10/15 01:14 PM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: Razorback]
bigcat85 Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 07/19/10
Posts: 1786
Loc: dallas, tx
go to rockwall marine

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#11033138 - 08/10/15 02:32 PM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: Razorback]
Razorback Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 08/31/01
Posts: 3433
Loc: Tyler, TX, USA
If I'm not mistaken, I wrote in my post that I wonder why they don't hire more people. At no time did I insinuate that they are making me wait just because they think it's fun or a good idea.

I took my boat to another shop that said they will get to it this week. They have their way of doing business...I have mine.

Oh, and that first shop? The one that told me my boat had been sitting there for 6-7 weeks because they couldn't get parts? I called their home office to ask what the heck was going on. The guy I talked to said, "I don't know, but I'll find out." Surprise, surprise...he called me a couple of hours later and told me my parts would be at the shop the next morning.

On top of that, I have heard story after story from dependable sources about how they decide which boats get worked on first. If you pull in with a problem and you are one of their buddies, they send 2-3 guys out into the parking lot like a NASCAR pit crew to fix it. If you're not one of the boys, your boat goes to the lot out back where it sits until they get around to wanting to fix it.

Someone I know and trust told me he knows for a fact that they took parts off other customers' boats to fix their buddies' boats. If you're the schmuck who isn't in the know, you now have to wait for not only the part you needed when you pulled in...but also a replacement for the one they took off your rig to put on someone else's.

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#11033155 - 08/10/15 02:38 PM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: Razorback]
Ranger1 Offline
TFF Celebrity

Registered: 08/28/03
Posts: 5103
Loc: Allen, Texas
Originally Posted By: Razorback
If I'm not mistaken, I wrote in my post that I wonder why they don't hire more people. At no time did I insinuate that they are making me wait just because they think it's fun or a good idea.

I took my boat to another shop that said they will get to it this week. They have their way of doing business...I have mine.

Oh, and that first shop? The one that told me my boat had been sitting there for 6-7 weeks because they couldn't get parts? I called their home office to ask what the heck was going on. The guy I talked to said, "I don't know, but I'll find out." Surprise, surprise...he called me a couple of hours later and told me my parts would be at the shop the next morning.

On top of that, I have heard story after story from dependable sources about how they decide which boats get worked on first. If you pull in with a problem and you are one of their buddies, they send 2-3 guys out into the parking lot like a NASCAR pit crew to fix it. If you're not one of the boys, your boat goes to the lot out back where it sits until they get around to wanting to fix it.

Someone I know and trust told me he knows for a fact that they took parts off other customers' boats to fix their buddies' boats. If you're the schmuck who isn't in the know, you now have to wait for not only the part you needed when you pulled in...but also a replacement for the one they took off your rig to put on someone else's.


Not saying this doesn't happen, but I bet this kinda stuff isn't happening with the more reputable companies out there.
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#11033267 - 08/10/15 03:16 PM Re: Long waits for boat repair [Re: Razorback]
ddmm Offline
Angler

Registered: 01/05/12
Posts: 315
Loc: Haslet, TX
I'll continue to take my Skeeter to Fun-N-Sun. Took it there a few weeks ago and they got it back in 4 days.
It's a trust factor. They've been in business for awhile because they take care of folks as fast as they can.

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