Purchasing a boat means making a significant financial investment into getting on the water. Many prospective boat owners want to know precisely what they are getting into before they fork over fistfuls of cash for a new or used Glastron boat.
Glastron boats are American staples in the industry, and usually a fan-favorite. However, they are commonly bought used, making normal wear and tear a concern.
Make sure you know what to look for so you don’t end up making costly repairs on a newly purchased used boat.
If you have your eye on a Glastron, here is everything you need to know about the most common problems and how to fix them!
Problems with The Transom
Unfortunately, one of the main issues found in any older boat is the transom. Older boats have a transom made of wood making it susceptible to transom rot.
The transom is usually left unprotected from the elements in many of the older makes and models from the previous boatowners. As a result, the entire piece must often be removed and refitted with new plywood and fiberglass filler.
This is an involved process but can be accomplished if you have some basic woodworking skills.
The first step is to make a paper pattern that will transfer to a sheet of plywood in the exact shape and thickness of the previous transom. Take exact measurements and snap a few pictures for comparison during the repair.
Use care in removing the old transom being careful not to damage any part of the rest of the hull.
Make sure to use pressure treated, marine grade plywood for the replacement and cut it to the exact shape of the old transom. This may require some specialty carpentry as some transoms do not come in standard plywood thicknesses.
It is also a good idea to use a sealant on any cut edges of the wood for added protection.
Once installed, you can use a fiberglass filler adhesive to fill the gaps and strengthen your repair. Trowel a little bit more of the fiberglass filler adhesive between your brand-new transom and the hull of the ship to hold the whole thing together.
You may also find that you need to use mechanical fasteners such as bolts to hold the new transom to the glass.
Related Article: 6 Most Common Problems With Wooden Boats
A Weakening Deck
Much like the transom, older Glastron models can have significant issues with the deck. The deck itself can weaken over time, but the damage is sometimes more extensive. Many people found that their deck also had problems with weakened or rotten stringers.
The stringers are an important part of any boat because they are the supporting structure that holds up your deck. When they begin to rot, you run the risk of falling directly through your deck.
Regular pressure treated, marine-grade plywood can be used to rebuild these important pieces of a classic Glastron boat.
If you are interested in restoring your boat with modern techniques, you may opt to laminate the stringers in glass and epoxy the deck. Stainless-steel screws can be used to fasten the new deck to your newly-laminated stringers.
Cracks in the Hull
One of the more significant issues that potential boat owners will face with their Glastron boats is a cracked and blistered hull.
A crack in the hull, however, can be repaired for someone inclined to put in the hard work!
Start by sanding the hull back until you can reach unbroken material, usually three inches or so past the area you need to repair. Tape over the new hole in your hull using several layers of duct tape on the inside of the boat.
Apply epoxy resin to the affected area with a damp cloth and cut a new piece of fiberglass cloth to cover the area. Start with large pieces and make them smaller as you rebuild the hull. Allow the patch job to dry overnight.
Remove the duct tape in the morning and sand both the inside and outside of the repaired area.
Last but not least, you will need to mix your epoxy with a thickener to make the patch job completely smooth. Sand the area once again and finish the hull project with a fresh coat of paint.
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Electrical Engine Problems
Is there anything worse than planning for a day on the water just to find out that your engine won’t start? You put the key in the ignition and hear crickets, the ominous sound that signals that your boat is dead in the water. This is likely indicating that you have some sort of electrical issue with your boat.
There are a lot of possible things that could be causing your electrical issue. Pay careful attention to your ignition switch.
If it is turning along with the key, it may have come loose. Tightening the screws should hold the mechanism in place again and allow the ignition switch to turn properly.
Alternatively, it could be the sign of a low battery that needs to be charged or replaced. Before you spend money on a new one, make sure you check all of the connections on the one you currently have and place the battery on a charger before trying to start the boat again.
Inspect your wiring and clean around the battery with a wire brush regularly to prevent this from becoming a significant issue on your Glastron boat!
General Pros and Cons for Glastron Boats
If you spend any time researching Glastron boats, you’re likely to come across the main reason why people like these particular boats, namely their cool looks.
Due to their unique visual appeal, some of the older models were featured in the epic James Bond films.
They are known for their streamlined looks with full windshields and careful attention to detail. Many people also like the power of the Glastron engines. Some models that have up to 270 horsepower that propels this lightweight boat at a fast pace making for an exciting ride.
The modern Glastron boats are now manufactured by Genmar and make use of their Virtual Engineered Composites (VEC) technology. This allows them to produce all of the fiberglass parts and still surpass clean air standards set for the industry.
This new technology also allows the hull, stringers, flotation, and sole to be produced as one single part.
Because of this advance in manufacturing, modern Glastron boats have more structural integrity and durability than the past models.
However, the older models still have a lot of cons that you should keep in mind when searching for a used boat:
- Weakened or rotten transoms
- Weakened stringers
- Cracks and blisters on the hull
- An engine that doesn’t start
Related Article: 4 Most-Common Problems with Havoc Boats
What Do the Reviews Say?
For many prospective boat owners, they want to know what the leading experts have to say about their particular make and model before investing. Turning to reviews is an excellent way to understand precisely what you may be getting with your new Glastron boat.
“Glastron GX205 is a spunky bowrider that delivers a great ride.” – Boats.com
After a performance test on one of the newer models, leading experts at Boats.com found that the overall design of the boat made it a fun addition to any family.
It packs a high-powered engine with an excess of features that make it highly desirable.
They claim that it has a “spunky” feel to it, making it great for boaters who want to really live on the water.
“It’s an American icon that offers buyers accessibility while maintaining its incredible design legacy.” -Nautical Ventures
The truth is Glastron boats have been around for over sixty years. The sleek designs they offer are woven into the fabric of America’s boating history with their debut on the big screen. Fortunately, there are also affordable models that don’t break the bank while offering excellent features.
What’s the Resale Value on Glastron Boats?
How much can you realistically expect to spend on a new or used Glastron boat? Many people love the features and designs of these makes and models, but they want to know if they can purchase one without breaking the bank. Fortunately, there is a lot of research already done on how much you can expect to spend on one of these boats.
|2003 Glastron GS 279||Under 100 hours||$32,500|
|2004 Glastron GS 279||100 hours||$28,995|
|2007 Glastron 279||434 hours||$34,600|
|2009 Glastron GLS 235||88 hours||$29,995|
|2014 Glastron GT160||53 hours||$21,250|
You may save a significant amount by opting for one of these used models over a newer one.
Depending on the specific model, you can expect to pay roughly $50,000 to more than $80,000 at the suggested list price.
These numbers reflect the base model, and additional upgrades will raise the price incrementally.
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Purchasing an older Glastron boat could be a wise investment for someone who wants a project to tackle in their free time.
However, the newer makes and models are designed to pack a punch with their lightweight styles and powerful motors.
Either way, you can’t go wrong with one of these boats.
Shelby Sullivan is our specialist when it comes to pontoon boats and recreational watercraft. She is often found sailing the freshwater lakes of Michigan. She is also a light-traveler who enjoys camping and traveling the world. Read more about Shelby here.