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So, you just got home from buying that really cool looking classic 1955 Wooden speedboat with a vintage German outboard. Sure it needs work, but you have all winter. But wait, the work is not the issue. Where do you get the parts?
Unlike cars that everyone drives and there are over a million examples of, boats have limited runs. Many boats sink, burn up, or rot away. Parts are usually scarce. Most boat replacement parts, if the boat is fairly new, can be acquired from the manufacturer. Older but not antique boat parts can usually be acquired from salvage boat parts companies. In general, unless you are looking for antique boat parts the availability is moderately high.
Fortunately, there is a small source for the antique boat parts as well. In most cases there are enthusiasts who are focused on one particular type or model of boat. These enthusiasts usually have swap meets and even sometimes Internet message boards with stuff for sale. Another option would be Internet auction sites like eBay. If a certain part still cannot be found, your last option would be to have it made. There are many tradesmen who would be happy to fabricate boat replacement parts for a small fee.
Restoring a boat and getting parts can be a challenge. But the reward of owning a restored boat is worth the searching.