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Iron Cowboy

Side console or Tiller ?

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I'm looking at new to me boats. I want something on the lighter side in the 16 ft range that will fit four with probably a 35 to 50 horse, would prefer power of bigger but wondering how much wieght it adds to go up in horses, need to be easy for a guy to load by himself.. I had a bigger glass boat with walk thru windshield and side console type and before that a smaller 14 ft resort/bench type tiller. I am wondering what the advantages and disadvantages are of each type in the little bigger 16 to 17 ft range. Is the console quite a bit more wieght? I think I like the idea of having more room in the middle of boat for walking around that the tiller offers (want the open floor plan type) and the fact of no controls/cables etc. to maintenence (simpler)

also like sitting in the middle of boat for a better field of vision of the front that the wheel type has but I dont think its that big a need. It will be used mainly by 3 sometimes 4 at a time panfishing or just putting around smaller to medium size lakes. Just wondering what others that have fished in both this size prefer good or bad? Any advise is appreciated.

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I always thought tiller boats were kind of stupid. Said I'd never own one.

Well, last year I started actually looking to buy a boat of my own. I was looking for something similar to what you are looking for. When it came down to it, a tiller was really what I wanted. I do a lot of big fishing--catfish, sturgeon, etc. I needed a boat that easily fit in my garage, yet had a good amount of space. I really like the openess of a tiller boat. For the hull size, you get a lot more room to manuever around. They are not as comfortable to drive in the cold, rain, waves, and for long distances, but it's a sacrifice I made for fishable space.

If I was to get a bigger boat, I'd get a console, but for now, I like my tiller.

I ended up with a 16' Sylvan Backtroller with a 60 HP on the back. It scoots along in the low 30s.

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Well, if you're into back trolling for walleyes, then the decision is easy, get a tiller. And as you said, they are a lot more open.

If you're fishing for panfish, pike, bass, and just about anything else I'd go side console. I've had two console boats, and there is no extra maintenance that I'm aware of. Easier and more comfortable to drive. Dry for at least yourself when the weather worsens. I don't feel the single consoles give up much for room in a 16'. You have to sit somewhere anway.

As a compromise between the two, add a small kicker or transom electric if you need the extra control.

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thanks for the reply's guys. I guess I can see the differences. Solbes I agree, you have to sit somewhere and the single console doesnt look to take up much room. I have been thinking I like the Lund pro-V seem to be pretty deep for better wave cut and dry ride. Anyone know what other boats are similar in demension to the deep V that are lunds competiton and maybe a little cheaper?

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Alumacraft tournament series is very similar to the Pro V in form and layout. When I was pricing boats it seemed the Lunds were significantly more expensive. I ended up with an 05 tournament sport (full windshield) but they do offer it in a PRO model that has a single console. I love my alumacraft...to me its as good a ride if not a little better than the Lunds I've ridden in.

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You would have a little maintenance with the steering cable, nothing more than greasing though, shift and throttle cables can wear after years of use.

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I prefer console boats, but bigger ones than you're looking at. If you want something in the 16 foot boat with a 50 hp motor I'm pretty sure I'd go with a tiller boat - more room in a boat that size than you'll get with a console, motors that size are easy to drive with the tiller handle, and I think you'll get more boat and more performance and fishability for your money. Also, you said the boat would be for small to medium size lakes, so I wouldn't expect that you'd be in for many wet or rough rides in your tiller boat. Good luck and have fun shopping.

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I have a 16.5 foot single console and I love it. I have no problems with space or anything. I have a bow mount and back troll just fine with it. Took a little getting used to, but it does just fine for me.

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I run a 1775 ProV with a 75hp tiller. Wonderful for my application. I think a tiller would suit you best from your explaination. Looks like you'd have to jump to an 1800 in the ProV model. I'd almost look at the Sportsman's series. There are 16-20' tiller models that are probably less expensive then a comparable ProV (only would be able to compare an 18' and 20' boat).

I'd also heavily look at something similar in Alumacraft and Crestliner. I think all are good boats and it's all going to come down to which one is set up to your liking. If at all possible however don't skimp on hp size if the boat allows and/or trolling motor size.

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