Customs Hold Up on Vintage Outboard

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LitchboroughLitchbor
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Customs Hold Up on Vintage Outboard

Post by LitchboroughLitchbor »

Hello All
I've bought a couple of 1960s Johnson outboards in Canada - but they are currently on Customs Hold in a bonded warehouse in Essex.
Does anyone have any experience of this?
I don't know why they want to inspect these engines, but when they do they'll find they are as described - very old, non-working engines, for restoration or spare parts.
I hope there is not a problem, and they're not going to tell me that I'm not allowed to import old engines.
After all the effort and expense that's gone in so far that would be so disappointing.
Cheers
Andrew
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LitchboroughLitchbor
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Re: Customs Hold Up on Vintage Outboard

Post by LitchboroughLitchbor »

Hello again
In case you are wondering why I got two, it's because the seller had cleared them out of an elderly couple's garage. Neither have run for years, but he thought I might have a better chance of getting one 'Runner', with a choice of parts from both.

LaDauphine
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Re: Customs Hold Up on Vintage Outboard

Post by LaDauphine »

Maybe customs became suspicious on the basis that they couldn’t see why anyone would go to the trouble and expense of importing two old Non-running outboard motors... :hilarious:

Diomedea
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Re: Customs Hold Up on Vintage Outboard

Post by Diomedea »

There are various reasons ranging from errors in the documentation, the nature of the goods and simple random detailed checking which is used by the customs authority; you can’t do much about that one.
My experience is that you get a better overall service by using (and paying for) one of the large international carriers such as FedEx or UPS. Some “carriers” perhaps found on the internet offer lower prices and then sell off the job to the lowest bidders, sometimes for only parts of the route. Consequently the job passes through a series of carriers, probably using consolidated shipments to save costs. You only find out when the goods arrive covered in carrier documents stickers with names that you don’t recognise.
I recently sent two parcels to California, the first, sent by a budget carrier took nearly three weeks and I lost track of it for days at a time. The second sent by FedEx was collected from my home and was delivered 36 hours later. Yes, significantly more expensive but far less stressful.
And no, nothing to do with boats, chocolate care packages for family in these tricky times.

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Rapier
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Re: Customs Hold Up on Vintage Outboard

Post by Rapier »

Big lumps those, Selectric too...
Fasten bra straps and remove dentures...

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LitchboroughLitchbor
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Re: Customs Hold Up on Vintage Outboard

Post by LitchboroughLitchbor »

I started off with Schumacher Cargo in Los Angeles. They seem to be the specialists for shipping classic cars and engines to and from USA. I didn't think of trying Fed Ex or UPS. When I found the engines in Canada, Schumacher put me onto their shipping partners in Canada - Go Transport Canada. They were very helpful and liaised with the seller, getting the engines into their warehouse in Toronto, into a container and onto the Quebec Express container ship, which I tracked down the St Lawrence River and on to Felixstowe, in just a few weeks. From Felixstowe the container went to Essex and was cleared through customs by Cargo Marketing Services in Tamworth. The pallets were ready for collection last week. Then they were told about the local Customs hold. They say this is not uncommon and that Customs are taking a while to make their inspections. John Buckley at Harbour Marine in Southwold says he's had the same experience importing vintage outboards, and that it's just a sign of the times - Covid, etc.
On the gearboxes, the models are V4S-1.. and V4SL-1... suggesting they are both mechanical, rather than V4A-.. electrical shift. I think both have mechanical shift levers. However both are now Long Shaft, suggesting that the V4S- model had an extended shaft fitted at some stage. I've actually got a short shaft and lower unit, which I'm hoping to use on that one. But until I finally get them, I won't know much for sure.
Just hope it's not going to take Customs much longer. I'm going to try phoning them tomorrow, to see whether that helps .......

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LitchboroughLitchbor
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Re: Customs Hold Up on Vintage Outboard

Post by LitchboroughLitchbor »

Some better news today.
Customs say they have examined and released my shipment.
Not out of the woods yet, but quite a relief!

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LitchboroughLitchbor
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Re: Customs Hold Up on Vintage Outboard

Post by LitchboroughLitchbor »

Finally got them home.
Border Force seem to have given them a close examination, but no obvious damage. For shipping, the seller removed the covers and one of the lower units - but I have all of these.
I'm looking forward to the restoration, but it will be a little while before I can get started.
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