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When buying a used boat most of the older models used marine plywood in the transom sandwiched between fiberglass. When they drilled the boat holes to mount the motor they siliconed or sealed the bolts. Made them feel good but under vibration the seal separates from one surface lets water in and rot begins and transom rots out. Motor is supported by thin fiberglass and wood mush. Here's a quick test professional boat buyers/dealers use to keep from getting burned.......

!!! Newer boats used composite cores eliminating the problem of rot.

If the transom is bad no use looking any further as its a very costly repair and not usually worth it on an old boat. Boat can look new and have a bad transom!!!

Quick Transom Test.

Have some one look at the transom from the side and with the motor at an angle put your leg or arms on the lower unit and push down with your weight.

Whole boat should move down a little on the trailer. If the transom bends on top even just a little run. Also small stress cracks in the gelcoat at the ends of the top of the transom indicates flexing under load, another sign of a weak and getting bad transom.

Of course sticking an icepic into the transom under the motor mount bolts on the inside of the boat works too but the owner may not want you poking his boat and you have to pierce the glass. Tapping with a screwdriver under the bolts and hearing a hollow noise is another sign.

Gad transom means the motor can break ogg under load and boat sinks without back end in a few seconds. Actually happened to a guy I know on Medina Lake a few years back . Got a bargain boat that was kept in a slip, was water skiing putting more pressure on transom and entire back ripped off. Boat sank and stranded 3 of them on the island across from Goat Hill. Of course they weren't wearing life jackets except for the skiier. Rare but it can happen....

Remember when buying used boats its like looking for a wife : If something looks too good to be true, it probably is........:wink:
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