Long Beach launches the Southern California boat-show season today with the opening of the 25th Long Beach show, running through Sunday at the Convention Center and Downtown Marina.
The silver anniversary show will feature more than 500 pleasure boats--power and sail--with more than 300 accessory and service booths. Selected boats will be available for demonstration rides in Long Beach Harbor. There will be seminars on various subjects, including how to buy a boat at a show.
The Boat Owners Assn. of the United States recently issued this advice:
--Determine that the purchase is subject to a sea trial.
--Get a guarantee that your deposit will be returned if the boat isn't delivered on schedule.
--Be sure the sale is subject to approved financing.
--For larger boats--even new ones--ask for a marine survey.
--Make sure you will have easy access to parts and warranty service.
Spike Harvey, executive director of the Southern California Marine Assn., the organization of dealers featured in the show, has his own thoughts on what potential buyers should know.
"The survey on a new boat is ridiculous," Harvey said. "Your average boat sold at a boat show is between 16 and 26 feet, and if it's brand new there isn't any way in the world you're going to be paying $1,500 for a survey when you have a full warranty to back it up.
"I don't say you need to go for a ride in a boat, but I do say to make sure you have enough power."
The selections are bright, shiny and mind-boggling.
"I start out by asking people what they want their boat to do to make sure they don't buy the wrong one," Harvey said. "Do you want to compromise with an all-round boat or do you want a specialty boat like a tournament ski boat or a bass boat?
"The second thing is to decide how much money you have to spend. And if you're going to use it in the ocean, you shouldn't be looking at anything under 20 feet."
Harvey said there will be no badly built boats at Long Beach.
"Most boats today are built the same way. The difference in price is aesthetics. We're doing a lot to clean up our act. The Boating Act of 1975 spells out construction (methods). All builders are members of the National Marine Manufacturers Assn. They have their own guidelines, which are much tougher than the federal guidelines."
Show hours: 1-9 p.m. weekdays, 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday. Admission: adults $6, seniors (55) $3, children 12 and younger free.
CONSERVATION--The Society for the Conservation of Bighorn Sheep and the California Department of Fish and Game are seeking hardy volunteers for their first desert water hole project of the 1993-94 season: removing tamarisk Nov. 6 from a guzzler in Anza Borrego State Park. Details: (213) 256-0463.
HUNTING--Southern California's duck season opens Saturday with Baldwin Lake featured for the first time since 1985, before the drought left the lake west of Big Bear Lake dry or too low for waterfowl. Shooting at Baldwin will be on Wednesdays and Saturdays only, with a limit of 35 permits. Boats are required--no shore hunting--and dogs are allowed. Hunters must apply to the DFG for a permit 10 days before their selected dates. . . . The San Gabriel Valley Chapter of Quail Unlimited will have its annual banquet tonight, 6 p.m., at the Green Start restaurant in Pasadena. Details: (818) 442-0459.
FRESHWATER FISHING--Irvine Lake plans to include a 21-pound rainbow trout named Bad Bertha in its big-fish plant for the lake's Nov. 5 trout opener. The fish will be tagged for a $2,000 prize. . . . Saltwater guide Kit McNear will address the Sierra Pacific Flyfishers at their dinner meeting Thursday, 6:30 p.m., at the Encino Glen. Tickets: $20 members, $22 non-members. Details: (818) 785-7306.
SALTWATER FISHING--Yellowtail remain locally and at Santa Catalina Island, but the best bait--squid--is hard to get.
MEXICAN FISHING--Cabo San Lucas: With tournament season approaching, the blue and striped marlin are in good numbers. Top catches in the last week were a pair of blues--698 pounds by J.B. Tom of Chino on the Gaviota 7 and 629 by Bill Kogerman on the private yacht Hatch-M. Yellowfin tuna fair. Larry Lowman of Woodland Hills caught a 140-pound yellowfin tuna. Dorado abundant. San Jose del Cabo: Wahoo scarce but many tuna 15-20 pounds and dorado 15-30. East Cape: Blue marlin of 446 and 350 pounds reported. San Diego Long-range: The Conquest Fishing Club--12 Newport Beach commercial real estate brokers who make regular trips on Capt. Joe Chait's Conquest--collected easy limits of yellowfin on a two-day trip to San Martin Island. Capt. John Grabowski's Red Rooster III, eight days with 29 anglers to Alijos Rocks, Uncle Sam's Bank and the 23 Fathom Spot, collected 248 yellowfin, 313 yellowtail and 61 wahoo. The Polaris Supreme took yellowfin limits for 22 anglers on a three-day trip. The Vagabond averaged 10-13 a passenger on two three-day trips.
PADDLING--A team from Tahiti won the Bankoh Molokai Hoe outrigger canoe race for the first time in the event's 21 years, paddling the 41 miles from Molokai to Oahu in a record time of 4 hours 55 minutes 27 seconds. Among nine California entries in the field of 72, the Dana Outrigger Canoe Club from Dana Point was third and a Marina del Rey team ninth.