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pauly

Fish and Ski? Good idea for new boat owner?

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Our family is looking at becoming first time boat owners. Besides my wife and I, we have three young children. We enjoy fishing as well as tubing, etc and thought the fish and ski style of boats offer a great combination. Any input on this type of boat or brands?

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I have a 1850 Sportfish and the reason I bought it was for the safty of the kids, the ability to be able to pull a tube when they got older and still be able to call it a fishing boat.

There are a bunch of different opions but if you can MAX out the motor.

Sifty

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The Lund Fisherman series or a Lund Tyee would be perfect. I know that Crestliner and Alumacraft build comparable models which would be good also. In my OPINION, if you intend on doing any amount of tubing or waterskiing, go with a big two stroke (Optimax, HPDI, or Etec, and yes you can get them on a Lund) they are MUCH better out of the hole than the 4 strokes, with the possible exception of a Mercury Verado. And as others have posted, go with as close to the max HP as you can afford. You can always slow down with a big motor, but you can't speed up an under powered rig. There are lots of people that have bought 1700 or 1750 Lund Fisherman with 115hp engines on them, they work but you won't waterski behind them. Understand that owning a boat is expensive and there are no shortcuts or cheap ways to good performance. Do your homework so that YOU decide what you want, not the dealer, and you will be much happier with your purchase.

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I would have to disagree with you mnmarlin. I was looking for a fish and ski model and ended up with a 175 Navigator Sport with a 115 Honda 4 stroke. It works wonderfully for fishing and for skiing/tubing. It has plenty of power and holeshot to pull up a skier or tuber. For a first boat I think that a fish and ski will fill your needs quite well.

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I got a Ranger Reata a few years ago for the same reasons you're looking at these kinds of boats ---- we had a couple young kids, and we spend a lot of family time in the boat cruising, swimming, tubing etc, as well as fishing. We're really happy with the boat, it's great for family stuff and it fishes better than I was expecting so that is really a bonus.

I maxed mine with a 175 Opti. Great motor and I love it. But if I was doing it again I'd go with a 4-stroke for the family times because of the engine noise --- it's hard to have a conversation with the Opti growling back there.

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Well said Dave I also went with a two stroke and if I could I would change it out in a minute.

When my brother comes to town to fish he will ask what boat we are taking all I ask is if he wants to talk to me or not. grin

Sifty

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As the owner of two small children and a boat, "CHEAP" is the best idea for someone who just has to have both. List of things I have cleaned off the bottom of my boat: Crayons on 98* day in SD, strawberry Whoppers on same day, tube of sunscreen:the kids were JUMPING on it to see how far it would shoot. Dead minnows, dead leeches the kids spilled.

Another thing your first boat is like your first car, your 'learner model'. Or first kid for that matter. You will make mistakes with it that will not bother you on a $4000 boat that will give you a heartache on your dream boat. When your kids are trying to see how fast daddies crankbaits sink while you are trying to explain to your wife how far to back in exactly, you might forget to raise the motor. On a 92 Merc 100 you just look at the skeg and say, wow thats bent pretty good. On an 09 250 Verado you vomit in front of everyone. Good luck, kids and boats can both be a lot of fun.

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I was facing this same deal last year, I wanted a fishing boat and my wife wanted a fluffy bowrider. As I was looking around the Crestliner Sport Fish and Alumicraft Trophy's peaked my intrest, they both had jump seats in the back of the boat and the crestliner had a convertible front deck, all the things my wife wanted and suited my fishing needs well also. Problem was I couldn't find a newer model on my price range.

By chance one day I came across the Monark King series, this had it all including a nice price mark, I got 170 series with a Merc 115 optimax. With young kids and all that I would buy this boat again in a second, it's not my dream boat, but the price is right, it fishes very well, the family is comfortable and safe, and I enjoy the 115 opti plenty of power for me.

RU

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Just like my new truck, the day my wife and i picked it up at the dealer, i drove to the desert and ran though the brush. she was sitting there with this look on her face like what the heck are you doing, you are scratching your new truck. and then i told her, that this time i was going to be the one to put the first scratch on it not some dumbarse that did not give a [PoorWordUsage] cause it did not belong to them. A week later I could not stand it and had to have the scratches cleaned up. Oh well i got to do it.

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Just like my new truck, the day my wife and i picked it up at the dealer, i drove to the desert and ran though the brush. she was sitting there with this look on her face like what the heck are you doing, you are scratching your new truck. and then i told her, that this time i was going to be the one to put the first scratch on it not some dumbarse that did not give a [PoorWordUsage] cause it did not belong to them. A week later I could not stand it and had to have the scratches cleaned up. Oh well i got to do it.

Dude, I could never do that. I'm to much of a fuss budget.

I take good care of my stuff because I need it to last a long time. As far as the boat is concerned, I know it needs to last "till _ell freezes over"

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Last year we shopped the boatshow for exactly the same thing. Looked at every possible option, and in the end, we ended up buying a Sylvan Expedition Sport. Back seats fold under for a big casting deck, 115 yammie 4-stroke, 2 live wells, awesome boat! Very happy with this purchase and would highly recommend it.

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I don't see any reason that a fish-n-ski would pose additional issues for a first time boat. I have a Ranger Reata and absolutely love it. Tows and loads/unloads easy, it's a safe and comfy ride. My only complaint with the boat is the rod locker gets wet. Thinking about getting a bigger one next year.

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Our family is looking at becoming first time boat owners. Besides my wife and I, we have three young children. We enjoy fishing as well as tubing, etc and thought the fish and ski style of boats offer a great combination. Any input on this type of boat or brands?

First off congrats - it's a great family activity. Personally, these days I would look for used boat. You can buy a loaded 2005 - 07 18 foot Lund Fisherman, Crestliner Sportfish or Alumacraft Trophy in the low-to-mid $20,000 range - some under $20,000. A used boat puts you in a very nice boat for the money - and already may have a scratch.

Be sure to compare the boat lengths (I would choose an 18'), main motor horsepower (I would want a 150 or 175 hp motor - no less), bow mount motor, trailers, on-board chargers, warratnies and electronics. Ranger Reata's are also a great choice. A used one of these goes for around $25-30,0000.

All of the above are great choices. You can look through dealer HSOforum and walleye fishing websites to find many boats for sale.

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Welcome to the boating addiction! I have to say that after owning many types of boats, I settled on the "Fish-n-Ski" type of boat myself and for my use it is perfect. I use it primarily to fish and the front trolling motor offers excellent control. I can also load up with kids and have a great recreational platform. The boat came with a detachable ski pole (nice accessory!) for pulling tubes, has a boarding ladder built in, a removeable Bimini top, livewell and two coolers, more rod storage than I can fill, comfy cruising seats, a windshield (really a good idea sometimes) and lots more. I have a 200 HP EFI two stroke that will push the boat to better than 60 mph.

If you decide to go this route, look around at several boats, watch the rear seat room (that's critical in a boat 19' or less, mine is 20') and make sure that the fishing platforms and pedastle seats fit your needs. Like mentioned above, I bought my boat used, four years old, and in perfect condition. I was able to pick it up for a little over a third of what it sold for new. Lucky for you as a buyer, most boats like this get very few hours put on them and if they are well cared for can be excellent values when they ar 3 to 5 years old. Here is my boat:

Image008.jpg

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