Which shall I buy - Formula 28' Volvo 8.?) or brand new Cobalt 25' (Mag 350)?

mwelliott

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I have a choice of two boats a Formula 260SS, 3yrs old with 75 hours on the clock. It is the size I want and clearly very well put together and in very good condition. Always kept in a shed. No obvious leaks or corrosion in the engine. Or a great deal on a slightly smaller buy new Cobalt 243 with the smaller engine. And the Cobalt is only 15-20% more expensive.

I will be using it in the south of France where it will be kept on the water for 7-8 months a year. Just for getting to beaches and day trips.

Will I have more problems with the Formula - what can go wrong? The Cobalt has a long guarantee and great back up service. Both manufacturers have a reputation for producing the highest quality boats.

With the larger Volvo engine use much more fuel if going at the same speed (25-30 mph) as the smaller engine? Am I going to resent taking it out every time!

Should I only expect problems with the engine or do people have problems with wiring, gauges, pumps etc?

Really be grateful for your help!

Matt
 

spinreach

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With the larger Volvo engine use much more fuel if going at the same speed (25-30 mph) as the smaller engine? Am I going to resent taking it out every time!

Should I only expect problems with the engine or do people have problems with wiring, gauges, pumps etc?

Really be grateful for your help!

Matt[/QUOTE]

Don't know about the relative fuel consumptions, but as a Formula owner, I would say you should have no worries with regard wiring and general boat build. Formula is little known here in the Uk but has a huge reputation in the states. They are only made in the one factory, is a family owned company and is all about quality. I'm sure they offer a 5 year hull warranty so do have confidence in their builds. The weight of Formula boats is usually significantly higher than similar sized boats, which gives them a really solid ride, even for a 26' boat, so maybe compare the wieghts and the relative merits of the engines.
 

Kipper

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Personaly if the Cobalt is big enough for you and you dont want to go round at 70mph then thats the one to go for. 350 mag is pretty quick as long as you are not going to run with 6-8 people on board.
Both good boats but new is always safer as you nevwer know the true history of a boat. You will have snagging as in all new things but warranty will sort it out. Both top notch build quality though. Both Kevlar reinforced hulls. Goog luck.
 

MapisM

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Personaly if the Cobalt is big enough for you and you dont want to go round at 70mph then thats the one to go for.
Well, if the OP wants to go around at 70mph, he'll have to look elsewhere anyway.
The 260SS with the 496 is only good for some high 50s - if that.
The only decently fast Formula hull is the stepped Fastech, though even that would only reach the mid 60s, at this size and with this power.

My other 2c on the OP questions:

Will I have more problems with the Formula - what can go wrong?
As long as the boat was properly maintained, nothing.
Just be aware that few engine hours doesn't necessarily mean good maintenance - sometimes quite the opposite, in fact.

With the larger Volvo engine use much more fuel if going at the same speed (25-30 mph) as the smaller engine?
You'll definitely burn more at any given speed - I'd guess 20 to 30%, maybe more.
But not because of the engine, which is actually more efficient that the 350.
The reason is the heavier, larger, and not so efficient hull.

Should I only expect problems with the engine or do people have problems with wiring, gauges, pumps etc?
Nah, those won't be an issue: the outdrive is the other key point.
If behind the 350 of the Cobalt there's a Bravo I, I'd prefer it to the Volvo DPS.
Otoh, I'd walk away from an Alpha, not because there's anything wrong with it per se, but because with the 350 it's pushed at its limit.
 
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mwelliott

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Used Formula or new Cobalt

Thanks for your comments - really helpful...and thanks for understanding my thread which was full of errors!

I think I'm moving towards the used Formula rather than the new Cobalt. We will be taking 5-10 people on the boat and it sounds as though the 350 Mag on a heavy 28ft boat may struggle compared with the 8.1 Volvo GXI.

Also it sounds as though if the Formula has been properly looked after then it should be as good as the Cobalt...which may need warranty items to be dealt with - a pain if I am in the UK and the boat is in France.

I don't want to do more than 25-30 mph max - I don't want a speed boat for speed - I want it to get me to places quickly. If there was a more comfortable way of going this speed (rather than a boat that planes) and it wasn't longer then I'd go for that. But people tell me there isn't!

Matt
 

MapisM

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I don't want to do more than 25-30 mph max - I don't want a speed boat for speed - I want it to get me to places quickly.
If there was a more comfortable way of going this speed (rather than a boat that planes) and it wasn't longer then I'd go for that. But people tell me there isn't!
What people tell you is correct.
On top of that, you should consider that when cruising in open sea with a 28 footer and a party of 10, the ride could be rather bumpy also at 25-30mph...
If you're looking for both comfort and speed, size does matter I'm afraid.
 

[2068]

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10-up is a bit much for that size boat, unless they are all size-0.

6-8 would be more comfortable with some room to move around.

And yes, as a day boat with some overnight capability, I would prefer the Formula.
 

mwelliott

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Have been talking to the European office of Cobalt who are appointing a new broker/importer in the UK but this has not yet been finally confirmed. South east based and suspect it will be confirmed very shortly.

Re the 10 people on the boat - you are right, this probably is lot for a boat this size but it will be 4 adults and 6 children max. Hope this is ok!
 

Kipper

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Well, if the OP wants to go around at 70mph, he'll have to look elsewhere anyway..

That was tongue in cheek by the way. Given his more detailed requirements I think bigger heavier boat would be more stable with a full load.
Not sure warranty would be such an issue for the Cobalt but it may be a little too small for his crew.
 

Kipper

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Thats because you can.
However a mate of mine has an old early 230 , early 90's I think Formula with a carbed 5.7 on an alpha one and it does an easy 60 two up. He recently resprayed it in the fastech graphics and it looks good. Engine only a few years old though. It origionaly had a 7.4 with racing headers on but it went bang in a big way.
 
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