New 150CC owner..."leave it in a slip" questions


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Hi Folks! I'm about to become a 2006 Triumph 150CC owner, courtesy of Merritt Marine in Hillsborough NC. Good guys there.

I already have an older 40 foot trawler yacht in a slip in Carolina Beach (Bayliner 3818 motoryacht...roomy and economical twin diesel boat, we love it!), and it's essentially the beach vacation home. We've been to downtown Wilmington (spent a month of weekends there), Bald Head Island, Myrtle Beach, Charleston, Georgetown SC, etc., and plan to make a trip north to Beaufort, Oriental, Topsail, etc., this summer, as well as spending pretty much every warm weekend on the boat. But, as you can probably guess, it's a bit of work to take a 40 foot 10-ton boat, I was looking at 9-10' RIB's and dinghy's, trying figure where to store it, how to wrestle it on and off the yacht, where to store the outboard, etc. Then I asked myself "Why not just get small 15-17 footer, and leave it in a 2nd slip there? Sure seems like an easier solution, and probably a better one". And what do you know, I found what I believe I'm looking for quite by accident at Merritt. :) Lightweight, Yamaha 50hp 2-stroke outboard, enough room for 3-5 folks (it's usually me, my lady friend, and my teenage daughter...they're both tiny, and I'm not a huge guy, we're about 400 lbs total), it's fairly quick, and a good price. What's not to love, eh? I'm a Triumph fan already, and it's not even in my possession yet (still being prepped).

I expect to use this small boat for day trips to Masonboro Island (there's some shallow areas I really want to be able to get into), Wrightsville Beach, maybe Southport, downtown Wilmington (essentially destinations within 6-12 miles by water), stuff like that....the trawler takes a couple or three hours (all things considered) to get us to the further destinations (8-10 knots is a really comfortable pace, although it'll go a bit faster), while this smaller boat should get us to some of those destinations in 15-30 mins, figuring somewhere around 30mph. If we're doing an overnight or weekend (or week long) trip, we'll take the yacht...if it's an afternoon outing or similar, we'll take the Triumph out instead (and probably more frequently than we'd take a 40 foot yacht out, merely because it's so easy to do).

So, here are some of my questions, assuming I'm going to leave it in a slip for most of the summer at Carolina Beach:

1) When it rains, does the rainwater run out of drain holes, or does the water have to be pumped out by a bilge pump? If bilge pump, I'm prob going to need to either cover the boat (to keep rainwater out), or add something to keep the battery charged (maybe a simple solar panel?), or maybe both? Is a cover effective at keeping rainwater out? Anyone using a solar panel to keep the battery charged? Any thoughts appreciated.

2) I will need bottom paint. Merritt sells the primer (I plan to buy a couple pints), but they don't apply bottom paint. I've read and talked to Merritt and to the Triumph dealer in Morehead City about how to apply it. Do any of you folks know anyone in the Wilmington, NC area who can properly apply ablative bottom paint (the softer paint that slowly scrubs off with use) to the polyethylene hull? If I don't have to tow it Morehead City for bottom paint, then to CB to use the boat, that would of course be preferable. The softer ablative paint is'll be in a wet slip for 3-4 months (5 max), then home in Raleigh on the trailer for late fall/winter/early spring, so it'll have to be repainted each spring (anti-fouling bottom paint dries out when it's not in the water, and loses it's chemical properties that repel sea growth. Now, if anyone knows of an ablative bottom paint that does NOT dry out over a trailered winter, I'm all ears. I do want the boat at the same marina where the yacht is, and they don't have any slips with a boat lift).

3) I'll assume that most folks probably do NOT leave their 150CC in a wet slip. Is there anything else I need to think about other than drainage, battery charge, probably a cover, and bottom paint? (If a hurricane or tropical storm comes through, I'll tow the trailer down and pull the Triumph out, so not too concerned about that...I would likely have it out by hurricane season anyway.)

Thanks in advance!
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