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  #1  
Old 05-12-2008
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Marine Contractors—Who to Use, Who to Avoid

Are there any marine contractors that you've worked with that were especially good and you'd recommend? Were there any you've worked with that you'd recommend people avoid like the plague?

I've got two names for the avoid like the plague.

Kelley Marine Services, out of Wareham, MA

Peter Kennedy Yacht Services, out of Annapolis, MD

Here's why:

Kelley Marine Services:

Well, two years ago, at the end of the season, I was in the hospital and couldn't winterize my boat.... The yard hauled her out for me, and I called up the marine services company that had an office at my marina and asked them to do the following:
  • Winterize the 20 HP outboard
  • Winterize the freshwater system—two sinks, head, holding tank
  • Scribe a new waterline so I could re-paint the hull the following spring
We agreed on a price after discussing what I wanted done. When I went to the boat, after getting out of the hospital, I found that they had done the following:

He had not scribed a new water line...and when asked about it, I was told that he said he was only going to do that if he was going to be painting the bottom in the spring—not what we had agreed to. He had winterized the freshwater system and engine.

He had also removed the two small AGM starting batteries I have for "winter maintenance", even though I had not requested this. When I asked where my batteries were, he told me that he had removed them for winter maintenance and that they'd send me a bill for it in the spring. I requested he replace the batteries, since I had not asked him to remove or maintain the batteries... What was really laughable was he had missed the two wet-cell T105 golf cart batteries, which really do require maintenance over the winter.

The following week, when I went back to the marina, I found that he had left the boat unlocked, and the batteries weren't reconnected to the electrical system. When I asked why my batteries weren't reconnected, he said, "Oh, we must have forgotten to do that, it isn't a big deal and only takes a minute or so." Well, these batteries have a lot of connections, and re-connecting them and strapping the battery boxes down takes about 10 minutes to do properly. Fortunately, this spring, when I came to the marina, I found he had been kicked to the curb. Too many customer complaints.

Peter Kennedy Yacht Services:

See the posts located here and here.
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New England

You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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Old 05-12-2008
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Good
- Mack sails (Florida) - 5 stars
- Baltimore Hydraulics
- Maritime Plastics of Annapolis
- Zahnisers marina
- Zephyrwerks.com (Zephyrwerks - The Sheave Factory) - forgot to add 5 stars and then some. Ed Louchard saved me when Chesapeake Rigging failed miserably. Custom delrin sheaves of any size for anything. (BTW, for the same issue my experience with RigRite was marginal, but too small of a sample to base an opinion on)

Negative experience:
- Chesapeake rigging of Annapolis - minus 5 stars if there is such a thing.
- Alexander-Roberts rigging
- First Mate yacht services (Annapolis)
- Gary Willis fiberglass of Morehead City

Then there is a no-show list, but that's neither here nor there.

Last edited by brak; 05-12-2008 at 11:47 PM.
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Old 05-12-2008
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knothead has a spectacular aura about knothead has a spectacular aura about knothead has a spectacular aura about
This could be interesting and helpful.

Is this open for people to defend themselves?
Equal time?

There are always two sides to every story but usually only one side is right.
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Knothead-

If they're on the forum and can explain their actions.. especially the two I've posted, I'd love to see it.
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Telstar 28
New England

You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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Old 05-12-2008
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Two sides yes, but as long as everyone merely states THEIR OWN EXPERIENCE with any particular company or individual, then I don't see a problem. Anybody can have a bad day, and I know some people who have had the opposite experience from myself with the same company. So as long as people realize, this is just personal experiences, I think it's a useful thread.
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Full, is the spirit, that thinks not, of falling.
True, is the soul, that hesitates not, to give.
Alive, is the one, that believes, in love.
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Yes, I agree, that this thread has to be based on one's personal experience with a vendor.
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Telstar 28
New England

You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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Old 05-12-2008
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I had a good experience with Offshore Spars in Michigan. They were the OEM of the mast and spreaders for my S2.

When I needed to have a spreader tip repaired, i checked with a rigger in Essex, CT - cost $250 to redrill existing tip with bigger screws (saying this is a ripoff is too kind). Guy told me "...it would be much higher if I needed to install a new tip..."

Offshore charged me $85+ shipping to install new tip, sand and awlgrip paint the spreader - it looks like new.


Local machine shops are good sources for stainless parts - i had 4 custom made stainless backing plates made for my keel nuts. The aforementioned rigger in CT was going to charge me - guess what - $250! What a coincidence. Local machine shop did mine for $100.

Rick
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I honestly would not count high charges as a bad company. Zahnisers charges by the hour and assigns hours fairly liberally. But since at least they get the job done and it seems to work out reasonably well (knock wood) - I am happy. This is far better than any other marina around Chesapeake I dealt with (which also charge a lot but don't do much either).

I just paid $500 for a tiny metal strap and a cleat to be installed on my mast (and a deck light replaced). Is this a "rip-off"? Perhaps, I don't see where all those hours of work came from. But the work is done, and it only took two weeks from the day I requested it In any other business this might be marginal to bad, but in marine business - this is as close to perfect as I've ever seen. So, high prices are not what I would disqualify a business for. Doing shoddy work on the other hand is definitely it.
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PKYS and Kelley's Marine both do shoddy work... so that's why they're listed here.

I've had good luck dealing with US Spars and Selden Spars.
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Telstar 28
New England

You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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Old 05-12-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post

See the posts located here and here.
DAYUUMMMMM!

I have looked at the Gemini at two boat shows......I think I may want one.

One of the sales people, when I was going over all of the options and extras I wanted, very nicely suggested that some of the stuff I might have PK do he could have done in FL quite well.

I guess so!

That wiring stuff on your page is totally amazing. No wonder people sue people!
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