COLUMN: Dave Leaderhouse — Oct. 10, 2012

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Dave Leaderhouse
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Last year when I bought my boat, I knew there would be some things that needed fixing.

After all, I got it for a very good price and I am one of those guys who has to have everything working whether it is needed or not.

However, I didn’t realize the adventures it would take me on.

The first major repair that I did was get the steering fixed. It was so hard to turn the boat and I just didn’t enjoy it because I know from past experience driving a boat shouldn’t be that much work.

So, I pull the boat out of the water and take it to a shop at the lake. The guy says my steering cable needs to be replaced so I say go ahead and do it. When I pick up the boat a few days later to go fishing with my cousins, I couldn’t believe what was done.

I put the boat back in the water and when I turned left on the wheel I’m going right and when I turned right I’m going left. My cousin says he would never have believed it if he hadn’t seen it.

I take the boat back to the guy and explain what is going on and he says it can’t be. I just looked at him and said, “Well try it for yourself!” Here the steering tray had been put in upside down and they never even tested it out.

He reluctantly fixes the boat and I swear to myself that I will never be back in his yard again.

Which brings me to this year.

I spent a lot of time in my boat, but again there were some things that just weren’t right. For one, my gas gauge wasn’t working so I never knew how much fuel I had in it and twice I could be seen paddling on Emma Lake trying to get to shore so I could get some gas in it to get back to the cabin. Not that that is a bad thing because both times were beautiful days and I wasn’t that far from shore. It just became more of an inconvenience and like I say I want my toys working properly.

So, I ask around as to who is good with small motors and the one name that kept coming up was Lee Glass from 4 Seasons Recreational Repair. As the season wound down, I made a short list of things I thought I would get fixed at the same time as the gas tank and then I called him. He said bring it in any time and we will get you fixed up.

At the beginning of September, one of my closest friends was in from Kelowna and he hadn’t been on Emma Lake in years so we take the boat out and have a great day on the lake. When we were done, rather than cover it up properly, I leave it open at the dock thinking I will be back in a couple days for one last ride since the weather was holding so nice.

A couple days later a wicked wind blows in and my dad calls and says my boat is under water. I just laughed thinking dad was exaggerating, but when I went out the next day all that was above the water was the nose of the boat. It took two sump pumps and me in there with a five-gallon pail to get the boat back above water and when I turned the key, it started.

I thought, well, I better not push my luck so I pulled it out of the lake and took it to Lee Glass’s place. I gave him a list of things I would like him to look at and he said he would go over it real good and let me know what he finds.

Well, this guy is thorough! He found things that weren’t working that I never even knew about and things that weren’t on the boat that should have been installed by the manufacturer. It cost me a little more than I had expected, but when I put that boat in the water next year, there is nothing that I will have to worry about and that excites me, because as much as I love boating, being stranded doesn’t really appeal to me.

I never took my boat to other lakes because of that fear, but next year will be different.

I know this is a plug, and I am getting no benefit from it all, but if you need something done on your boat or other recreational toy, give Lee a call. He was almost apologetic when explaining my bill to me and how much it cost yet it was work that needed to be done and honestly, for what he did, I thought it would be a lot more.

I can’t wait for next summer, and the summer after that and the one after that too as I know now my boat will be running perfect for a long time to come.

 

Dave Leaderhouse is a reporter with the Daily Herald.

 

Organizations: Daily Herald

Geographic location: Emma Lake, Kelowna

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