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huskie006

New Boat

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My dad and I are looking to get a new boat. We are looking at the "Fish and Ski" models. And we were wondering if any of you guys have one, or have used one before? What brand do you guys prefer? Anything you did not like about the boats? Anything else we should know before picking one?

Thanks in advance!!!

huskie006

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My brother.. one of those wise consumers.. literally took 4 years to research 'all around'' boats before purchasing one last week.

He picked the Alumacraft Trophy 185 Deep V. See alumacraft.com

Something to look into.

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The boat I liked most was the Ranger 1850 Reata. Looks great, layout is great, amenities are great, fit and finish are great.....everything is great except for the cost. smirk.gif Others that are very nice rigs in the fish/ski model are the Stratos 386XF which is very similar to the 1850 Reata, just a little less quality plus the battery storage is under the consoles (no room for under-console storage). The Crestliner Sportfish, Alumacraft Trophy, Lund Fisherman & Tyee Gran Sport.....all top of the line aluminum fish/ski boats. The Skeeter WX1880 is another choice to consider, and a fine boat IMO.

If you're looking for something to ski/tube in more than fish, then the Ranger 180, 190 or 210 Reata might be a choice. However, in my opinion, these boats are not set up as well for fishing as the 1850 or 1750 Reatas are. Triton, Champion and some others make some fine fish/ski boats like the 180 - 210 Reatas. Warrior is primarily set up for fishing, but you can add options to make it a more fish/ski type boat.

Lots and lots of choices out there. Any of the brands/models listed in the first paragraph will treat you well, however the glass boats will be better rides in my opinion.

Good luck and most of all....go out, look at all the options, see what fits your needs best and have lots of fun doing it! cool.gif

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The "top" options that come to mind are:

For glass 1) Ranger Reata 1850, 2) Stratos 386, 3) I believe Skeeter, Warrior and Yar-Craft also make walk-thru models

For aluminum 1) Lund Tyee (they no longer make Fisherman model in '07 but you can find used or holdovers), 2) Alumacraft Trophy and 3) Crestliner Sportfish

I really like the Reata 1850. Any of the alumuminum models are also very nice.

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Good catch. I couldn't remember if the Fishermans were still in production or not. They were very similar to the Tyee GS in my opinion.

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basscatcher can probably answer any question you could possibly dream up on this subject, I think he spent about 20 hrs a day 7 days a week on this for about 10 straight months while he was looking for his boat.

btw basscatcher, how bad's your case of spring fever?

Besides the 1850 Reata you can get the same layout in the 1750 Reata (Stratos has a 376 too I believe).

If you're looking at boats with more fishing/less play, like the 1860 and 1760 Reata, or the 385 and 375 Stratos, you should look at the 1880 Skeeter as well. There was someone on this board that got a Triton F&S a while ago, it had more of a bass/pleasure layout like the 180, 190 and 210 Reatas.

I'm not very familiar with aluminum F&S models so I can't help you there.

What do you and your dad fish for, how do you plan to fish out of your new boat?

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Check out the G3 boats they are alot of boat for the money plus you get to put a Yamaha on it. buy a lund and you have to put a merc on it. In my opinion Lund's quality in 07 has gone way down hill. There fit and finish leaves alot to be desired. Leave it to Brunswick to ruin a good thing.

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I also spent a ton of time researching fish and ski boats. I decided that I wanted a glass boat which would draw very little water, for the bass fishing. I looked at all of the boats mentioned above, and settled on the Triton FS series or the ranger reata bass style (180,190,or the 210). These two boats seemed better built and had a center rod storage with tubes. (I can't stand pulling rods out of a side compartment without tubes.) I also really liked the back bench seat as opposed to the two jump seat in the back. They just didn't look comfortable. Did I mention that these two boats have center rod lockers. grin.gif The stratos and skeeter have the rod lockers in the floor, where the water goes when it gets wet. NO GOOD in my opinion. Also, the triton and the ranger had a huge rear casting platform, and the front deck that you could land a helicopter on. Again great for bass fishing. The layout is probably the most important feature in the boat, with all of the choices out there, you should find exactly what works for you.

I waited for the first deal to come around and it happend to be a Triton FS 190 with a 200 opti. I only had to drive to Oklahoma to pick it up. I am happy with the boat so far, with the exception of the front two seats came loose from the fiberglass, (fixed under warranty with a little pressure from a dealer to triton.) This boat flat out flies! I have had it to 68 mph with 4 guys and a full tank of gas. With this comes that famous Triton chine walk, which keeps me from going that fast very often. I can drive it comfortably at 60 mph with weight distributed evenly.

If I could do it over though, I would have gotten a ranger reata 1950, I don't dare take my boat on big water, since the stern of the boat sits about 6" above the water line, and even just backing up in calm water, water will fill the splash well. (I just have to call my friend with a lund to fish Mille Lacs wink.gif)

It really comes down to what type of fishing you do. If you are big into bass style fishing I wouldn't hesitate on either the ranger or the triton, they lay out almost the same on the inside.

If you are fishing bigger water, for walleyes etc, the deeper rangers would fit the bill much better.

Another point for the glass boats is no wood construction, at least for triton, and I also belive the ranger has no wood in its construction.

For the aluminum side you cant go wrong with the Lunds and Alumacraft. Both very impressive boats. Crestliners have plastic handles on all of the compartments, which could break if stepped on in the up position. That was a turn off for me. I think all of the other boats listed have metal handles.

Hope this helps, and ask as many questions as need be, boats are a big investment, make sure you get what you like.

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grin.gifgrin.gifgrin.gifThat right there is funny!!!!! LMAO! grin.gif I read that to my wife and she laughed and totally agrees. grin.gif I must be obsessive compulsive when it comes to boats! crazy.gifgrin.gif

I can't WAIT to get out on the open water again! I never did open the motor wide and trim it out at all last fall, so I'm curious to see what she can do. cool.gif Mostly, I'm just ready to fish open water. Got the sturgeon excursion in April, so it won't be long!

Don't you take an early-in-the-year trip somewhere? Erie?

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Yep, we've gone to Erie in mid April the last few years. Taking this year off though, a couple guys in the group have (or will have) new babies, or just moved, or want to use their vacation time for something else, etc. So the plan is to skip this year and go again next year.

I don't think the Sturgeon Excursion is in the works for me though. I'd like to go, but I've kind of neglected my cabin and food plots the last couple springs because of the Erie trip, and this year I feel the need to make up for lost time. You never know though, sure would like to be with the group on the Rainy.

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Lund uses both plastic and metal handels. Lund will be S*** for the next 3 years until Irwin Jacobs buys it back from Brunswick for 10cents on the dollar. Same with Crestliner.

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A new boat?? Your the fin. adviser. My fin. adviser said yes to a new boat back in late July 06. We looked for about 6 months,I'm sure you have checked around. We found a great boat to fix our needs,We were in a 14 ft. Lund with a 35 Johnson. The new family members is a 18.5 Monark with the 140. The kids love the skiing and tubing, we love fishing the deep v-hull on the states bigger water. Enjoy whatever you buy.

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Our favorite fishing is for walleye and pike. But one of the selling points has to be comfortable for my mom/ dad's wife to go with. (and the little children). We like the Triton's, but like someone said... backtrolling with theses makes alot of splashes.

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We went with the 1850 Reata, at the time it wasn't my first choice for fishing but it was definately my wife's first choice (and our two young kids too). I thought it would be "okay" for fishing but I've really been pleasantly surprised with the fishability, and the only complaint I have is that I sort of had my sights set on a 20 foot boat for when I'm on the BIG, BIG water.

One really nice family feature of the 1750 / 1850 Reata and the 376 / 386 Stratos is the retractable front platform. When we're cruising my wife and kids are always in front of the windshield. Also they are deep boats, even from the front and rear decks, which is nice with the kids. After my wife saw the retractable front deck she pretty much ruled out all other layouts.

The front deck of the 1850 looks small, but that is just in comparison to other boats I think. I cast for muskies, pike and walleye from the front deck, and when we go panfishing my wife and I and both kids fit up there easily. You're kind of close to the windshield for casting but quickly learn to be aware of it.

I do a lot of trolling and the 1850 is almost the perfect boat for that.

I don't think any of the glass fish&skis are going to be ideal for backtrolling, due to the style of transom. I've done some backtrolling with mine but you will get splashes and worse, especially if going into waves. I use my bowmount more than my kicker for livebait fishing. Previously I had a couple tin boats with wave wackers, and those style boats were better for backtrolling.

Good luck, I hope some of this helps.

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I did the same research a couple years ago and went with the Nitro 188 sport,I upgraded to the 150hp and this boat rides great and will reach 60mph, for the price,I couldnt go wrong,I also like the 1850 Reata,but it is way over priced.

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one qestion for you guys with the fish and ski mdels... How big is the livewell. It appears to be small. About how many fish do you think you could fit in there? Would a nice pike fit in those?

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take a look at Monark Marine's "King" series... they're a label of StarCraft. I bought the 185 model two years ago (18'5"). I compared features of all the other boats mentioned here and came to the conclusion that I got the most bang for my buck with the Monark. It's an 'off brand' so if you're into showing off the 'label', then look elsewhere. If you want a nice boat that rides well, pulls skiers/tube-ers, is confortable, and easily converts to a capable fishing rig, take a look at these...

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Quote:

one qestion for you guys with the fish and ski mdels... How big is the livewell. It appears to be small. About how many fish do you think you could fit in there? Would a nice pike fit in those?


If I remember correctly the triton's is 30 gallons! it is huge. The only thing that I don't like about the live well, is it is sized to put bass in there. About 30"X30" and very deep. The pike would fit, just in a circle grin.gif.

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Quote:

I also like the 1850 Reata,but it is way over priced


It's only overpriced if nobody buys them, but they sell plenty of them grin.gifgrin.gifgrin.gif

huskie - about the livewell size, I don't know how to answer that without knowing which boat your're talking about. In my boat the livewell looks small (it's 30" long) but I've had a dozen Mille Lacs walleyes in there and they don't even look crowded. The biggest fish I've had in there has been 32", he fit with no problem. If you were keeping a half dozen pike or so I think you could do it easily.

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You cant go wrong with going with glass.

Stratos is making a 375 and a 386 that are very nice boats. THey have alot of room in them, and are a lower price point boat that is a glass boat.

Reata is a boat that you can do everythign out of. Fishing, skiing, crusin, has all the packages that a person would want in a fish and ski boat. People are buying them alot now days, becuase for the simple fact that alum is almost the same price.

Alum has went up so much these days, that its tough for a person not to buy a glass boat when its a few more dollors.

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i looked at a new ranger last month at a boat show. it is called the angler.( i think!) it is a fishing interior built on the reata hull( 17'6" i think). it had places for three pedestal seats back with the driver, and atleast one on the front deck. they had a show price of $22000 with locator , a trolling motor ,and a 115 opti .

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I don't want to hijack a thread, but just a quick question. I know that new car shopping the consumer has a bit of room to haggle at the price. Is this also true for new boat shopping or is the sticker what you are going to pay?

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yep! that's the one! grin.gif

i have never bought a new boat,so? i would think it depends on how popular the model is, and how the market has been doing, but it never hurts to try.the boat i mentioned above; thier show special on that rig was same price, but it had a 130 opti on it.

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