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Old 14 November 2004, 15:19   #1
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Stolen property - how to check

I'm negotiating the purchase of a Ribtec 5.85 with a Suzuki DF140 outboard. The seller seems genuine enough, but we've all heard the horror stories so I need to be sure!

I have the boat's hull number and the engine's serial number. Is there a central register of stolen items, or should I check with the respective dealers?

Incidentally, it is being sold as a 98 boat but the hull number starts 96. That suggests to me that it's two years older. Any thoughts?
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Old 14 November 2004, 15:43   #2
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sadly there is no data base of stolen boats and engines,you could ask the respective dealers they should be able to tell you the age's and maybe some service history.its usually the last 2 numbers to age a boat not first 2.ask to see the sellers receipt from when he bought it and good luck.
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Old 14 November 2004, 16:22   #3
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You could always try bunging the hull serial no into Google - there are a few insurance related sites that have details of stolen boats. Or contact Ribtec and ask them for details of the hull.
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Old 14 November 2004, 16:22   #4
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I would phone up Ribtec, they should have records of the boat and the first owner. They should also be able to decipher the serial number seeing as they built it, if they fitted it out with the Suzy they should be able to confirm the age of that awell, if not your local Suzy dealer can verify that from the serial number.
Boatsandoutboards.co.uk has a stolen boat section and if you do some googleing some of the insurance companies have stolen boat websites.

http://www.newtoncrum.co.uk/stolen.html (not many ribs but gives you an idea).

Finally, make sure you get a reciept from the seller (if you buy it) stating that no debts are secured against it. I believe there is a downloadable RYA form somewhere.

Good luck




EDIT: Peter beat me to it!
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Old 14 November 2004, 16:59   #5
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Hi Jlanng,

This should be quite easy.

The fly in the ointment here is that there's no foolproof, compulsory regiastration for leisure craft that is anything like as reliable as a motor vehicle registration document (as the SSR [Small Ships Registration] certificate is issued almost "on trust"). However, a serious RIB owner should have the following:

Bill of sale (from new or used purchase)
Insurance certificate
SSR
CG66 registration
VHF registration (if VHF fitted)
Engine service book and/or dealer service sheets
Other receipts from incidental purchases/maintenence, etc.
Manuals for GPS etc

If all eight items are shown by the seller, then it's a very, very good indication that the seller is genuine. The more that are missing from the list, the greater the suspicion! If the engine and trailer have been serviced every year, that's quite a paper trail that has started.
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Old 14 November 2004, 17:14   #6
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Hull number

Quote:
Originally Posted by jlanng
Incidentally, it is being sold as a 98 boat but the hull number starts 96. That suggests to me that it's two years older. Any thoughts?
If the boat is later than 16 June 1998 then it should be CE marked. Part of this is it has a hull number in a specified format as follows:

AA BBB CCCCC D E FF

AA = country code - GB for a uk builder
BBB = the boat builders identifier
CCCCC = any combination of numbers or letters that the builder wants to use.
D = Month of manufacture - A for january, B for February etc.
E = Year of manufacture - 8 for 1998, 0 for 2000, 1 for 2001 etc.
F = Model year - 98 for 1998, 00 for 2000, 01 for 2001 etc.

So, if the hull number starts 96 the number is not in the format above so it is probably older than 1998.

However, a lot of small boat manufacturers were pretty slack at getting their hull numbers and CE marking in order when the requirements came in.
As an example, one of my boats is a December 1998 build with no hull number at all!

I hope this may be of use.

Regards
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Old 14 November 2004, 17:22   #7
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Excellent piece of reference information there, Duncan. Have a "hug"
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Old 15 November 2004, 05:14   #8
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You could try this to give you the official owners name:
http://www.itu.int/cgi-bin/htsh/mars/ship_search.sh
And is this name the same as the bloke selling the boat? If not, why not?

I also wonder wether a call to your nearest Coastguard Station might help?
It occurs to me that if you have your boat stolen, then you would be likely to tell the Police and possible the CG as well (or in turn the Police would tell the CG). Gingercoastie is the man to tell us the answer to that one.
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Old 15 November 2004, 05:21   #9
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Brian,

People do report stolen/missing boats etc to us, and we keep records of them but there is no official records of stolen boats kept by the coastguard and we would always recommend you check with the police.
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Old 15 November 2004, 05:40   #10
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There's a section here for reporting stolen boats, but it doesn't seem to get much use. It would be a lot more useful if people used it more!

John
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