Continuing on our discussion on lamination systems for your next boat purchase at the 2015 Toronto Boat Show or for an in season dealership purchase. Lets take a look at the best fiberglass boating value which provides you and your family the boat hull with the longest longevity in combination with fewest hull problems for your hard-earned dollar….no contest its a vinyl ester based lamination system. There are a number of variations on this system depending on the boat builder, the intended area of usage of the boat as well as where it is most likely to be purchased and used and what price schedule they are trying to target.
It is simply the Best….Hand lay Up Lamination With Vinyl Ester Resins
Manufacturers have a very wide range of gelcoats, fiberglass roving and cloths as well as resins to bind the laminate together into a strong cohesive structure. A delicate balance of laminating compounds and materials should be delivered to the buyer who is expecting and trusting that his chosen brand is providing a lasting product.
A few short years ago at The Toronto Boat Show buyers and sellers spent considerable time with interested buyers on their brands construction. I spoke today with an owner of a major boat builder and he said that they feel that the market has changed and that buyers are just assuming and expecting that the hull is structurally sound and of good lamination….not worth spending time on! Today I got a first look at the new Monterey Boat brochure which is the most detailed model lineup pictorial display and the thickest I have seen in…I can’t remember when! Over 1/2 inch of pages…..not one word on construction…and this from and independent boat builder who in my opinion builds one of the finest boats in the market today using some of the most expensive laminating material including exclusive usage of Vinyl Ester resins and Spray Core. Why is that? Marketing guys are telling them that the boat buyer is not paying attention to quality only appearance and price!
Not long ago when I spoke with families the purchase of a recreational freshwater boat was thought of as a 20 year boating investment with the expectation that we as a family will not be replacing the family toy for a couple of decades. Has this changed and boats are now thought of as a disposable family item? All major marine boat retailers should know what there boats are made of and how they are made this just makes good sense after all we are telling you that we interested in your long term business and should be operating in your best interest. The question remains….Is today’s boat shopper actually interested in construction quality or only price? If you are considering the purchase as disposable then price is where it is at! The boat may have more issues with poly ester lamination, gel coat cracking, exterior finish degradation, reduced lifespan and upholstery wear but I am satisfied with that as it was cheaper?
Why are not all boat builders utilizing Vinyl Ester Resin systems….in a word cost! Why do not all boat retail operations only sell boats made of Vinyl Ester resins? The answer to the last question is simple…they cannot! Why is that? It has to do with the pecking order of boat line retail…the good stuff and the right stuff is already taken by another marine dealer in that trading zone. If Brand X say Monterey Boats franchise is held by Huntsville Marine ( Vinyl Ester Resins) in the Muskoka trading region, Regal is not available and neither is Chaparral…my choice as a competitive dealer is if I want to be or I need to be in the boat selling business for my marine operation to survive is….sell a brand that is built with a Poly Ester System such as Brand Y.
Take for instance myself which is Huntsville Marine. Huntsville marine has one competitor in the Town of Huntsville for boat sales and that is Mobile Marine. Huntsville Marine holds the franchises for Monterey ( Vinyl Ester ), Campion ( Vinyl Ester Hybrid) and Larson (VEC composite) and due to the volume we achieve with these lines and our market recognition for service these lines are not available to Mobile Marine. Mobile Marine represents Glasstron boats which according to the information we have is a Poly Ester lamination of which available technical literature information states Poly Ester lamination is not a market leader in quality and value. There are only two other choices for Mobile if they want to change brands…Rinker and Crownline in this market and both of these do not change the situation. Crownline for a number of years in this area was represented by Pride of Muskoka and recently they, again according to market information, is no longer representing that line. According to available market information, The Glasstron boat line has just changed hands again ( 3 Owners in the last decade) and is now owned and operated by sailboats manufacturer and has some funky styling, colours and graphics. I do realize that curb appeal is subjective. If you were the owner operator of Mobile Marine what would you do for you customers and potential customers? Knowing what I know….Huntsville Marine would not be in this position.