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  1. #1

    Buying/Selling and Sea Trial

    I would like to ask everyone a couple of questions regarding purchasing a used ski. I have been looking at some listing on Craigslist as well as pwctrader. I have purchased a used boat of off Craigslist a few years ago. It was the first listing I felt good about and contacted the seller. The seller was great and towed his boat over an hour one way for a sea trial. I bought it after testing. Fast forward to today. I am contacting all these "sellers", including dealers and they all are refusing sea trials. Did industry change since I last bought a used boat? I have purchased 2 jet skis so far in my life, both from dealer but new so I didn't insist on water trial. I think there were more motivated seller back when I bought my boat but there has to be people that would offer sea trial. If you bought or sold a ski recently, did you offer or get sea trial? Did you buy or sell a used ski without a sea trial? Are these things just being sold without a sea trial so sellers don't have motivation to offer it? Any comments are appreciated.

  2. #2
    Click avatar for tech links/info K447's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    near Toronto, Canada
    Where are you located?

  3. #3
    Richmond, VA but I am looking at skis from entire Maryland to most of North Carolina.

  4. #4
    leejax01's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Water tests are a must if buying used on Craigslist. You sound serious enough and a price should be worked out prior to a water test to make sure it's just the end to the deal.

  5. #5
    Tiny's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    The Atl
    Dealers in 95% of the cases will NOT allow demo rides..

    #1--If you dont like it or dont buy it, they now have a used machine that they can not sell for MSRP or whatever they sell for. They have to sell it at a discount.
    #2--Insurance purposes--What a nightmare!!!! Think about how easy it is for someone to run off with a PWC if the owner is not around. BRP had someone take off on a demo ski a few years ago at a demo stop. They left the "assigned riding area" and took off across the lake, beached them and walked off into the woods..People got a joy ride and they were left with damaged skis...

    As far as an individual selling a pwc or a boat, it depends on how serious they are about wanting to get rid of it. But the problem with you taking off with it is still there..Not saying you would do that but you have to think about it from their perspective......

  6. #6
    Formerly Ultra250 TN Aquaholic6801's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Old Hickory,Tn
    No way I would buy a used ski with out a test ride.....I can understand a Dealer not wanting every new ski they sell be test driven....but a good dealer should have a demo ski of what they sell....

  7. #7
    YoYamma's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Central Florida
    Quote Originally Posted by webmister View Post
    I would like to ask everyone a couple of questions regarding purchasing a used ski... Did you buy or sell a used ski without a sea trial? Are these things just being sold without a sea trial so sellers don't have motivation to offer it? Any comments are appreciated.
    I have purchased 6 (six) 4 stroke PWC, (two used and 4 new) and insisted on a test ride every time. If the dealer refused I didn't do business with them and take my business somewhere else. Would you buy a used car without test riding it? I sure wouldn't.

    Why anyone would pay upwards of $10K or more for a watercraft without a test ride is a mystery to me, at least here in Florida. I can't speak for other areas though; I'm sure there are some dealers in other states who have the luxury of being the 'only game in town,' but that is not the case here in the Sunshine State.

    Of course, no business owner or seller wants people to waste their time, so do your research in advance and just let them know you are serious and put down a deposit if required, then a sea trial should be no problem.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    May 2008
    I agree a sea trial is a good idea for used skis and boats, but too many people are just looking for a quick joy ride and are "tire kickers" to begin with. Whenever I sell something I only allow a sea trial with a non refundable deposit of an agreed upon amount, with a simple signed receipt of that. Unless something goes wrong, that is to pay for my time and gas. That money of course gets applied to whatever agreed upon amount your buying the craft for. Some don't like it, but I work 3 jobs and don't have time for BS..

  9. #9
    SCHNORR12's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Lake George, NY
    Used skis should ALWAYS be water tested.

  10. #10
    OzarkYamMonster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Lake Of The Ozarks
    However, there are a few exceptions. If the ski is @ a fire sale price & you suspect or have been told that it has issues. (won't start, broke this or that, etc.) ... your expectations are then governed by your willingness to take chances, but is not blinded by those facts. Instead you accept them & pays your $. Ant' life grand

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