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Marine Electronics For Dummies
Last summer my family purchased a brand new Catalina 350. It was an exhilarating experience and we absolutely love our boat, but there were times when the boat-buying process became a bit overwhelming for me. If you have ever owned a boat you already know that just about everything you want to buy to put on your boat costs hundreds of dollars.
Ordering most of the options through the dealer triples that cost. Of course, their price includes installation, but with a little experience and the right contacts I felt confident that I could equip my own boat in the after-market and save thousands of dollars in the process. Great in theory, but pretty soon there I was with dozens of electronics shipping cartons in my foyer.
Before I continue let me backup to the buying process that launched a multi-million dollar internet buying service. I knew I wanted to be able to sail my boat offshore and safety was my top concern. With young children on board and a decade since my last good sailing experience, I was committed to equipping my boat with state-of-the art marine electronics. That being determined, I began the buying process surfing the internet for more information on products, pricing, capabilities and compatibilities. I soon realized that in order to get the right product at a reasonable price I had to brush up on my boat lingo. I combed articles and manufacturers’ websites. I talked to the maintenance guys at my marina. I bent the ear of the BoatUS store manager, who I had luckily befriended just before the process began. All told the process took a full work week’s worth of time and I still had to rely on a little luck to make sure it all came together in the end.
Back to my foyer. I felt pretty drained of energy after the buying process as described above, and now I sat staring at a stack of boxes worth over $10,000.00, looking at the prospect of beginning a whole new process of networking, finding the right resources and lining them all up to work in harmony. Five weeks later my boat was fully equipped, no unsightly wires showing, a beautiful display at the helm, and only two minor warranty issues to deal with (both of which ended up taking almost six months to get handled due to slow dealer response)
One would think I had had enough but I was just getting started. Instead of being fed up with the process I saw a wonderful opportunity to utilize my knowledge and commitment to service in helping other boaters through the rough waters of purchasing and installing marine electronics. I absolutely love saving money myself, but it is almost a bigger thrill not only saving my customers money, but providing that much needed but hardly ever found commodity – service! Everything Boats For Less (www.EB4L.com)is designed as a boater to boater buying service with no fees.
Let''s all do this together and take the industry by storm!