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Perchpapa

Otter or XLTwin or FishTrap - Which should I buy?

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I know everyone has been through all this before but I am planning on buying a new portable but I am not sure which one I want or need so I am asking the Ice Leaders?
Today I saw last years Otter Lodge and Den on sale at Cabelas for $355. I really like the deeper sled and the skirting but it may be a heavier shelter but looks to be built tough, but I'd have to buy seats if I want them. Plus I thought is looked a little ugly.
I really like the XLTwin but the sled doesn't look to tough but would be lighter than the Den plus it comes with some really nice seats. But is costs $400
The Fish Trap is nice but is kind of small but looks really lightweight. But the slead is really shallow so is the XLTwin.
Any suggestions?

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I have the Fishtrap Guide and I like it. I bought mine for $299 last year and it has been worth every penny. The Otters are nice and I really wanted one but the one I wanted with the options I wanted was over $700. If you use an ATV or snowmobile and drag the house behind the Otter is the way to go. My Fishtrap sled can do that but not like the otter. The Fishtraps are light and easy for one man to drag out or pull. It depends what you want and how much you want to spend. If you want to stand up get the Fishtrap that is the biggest (I think it is the yoyager). If you have the money get the Otter if not get the Fishtrap. I could have got the Otter but now I have the FL-18 and a new GPS with the money I saved!

[This message has been edited by Wobbler (edited 12-11-2003).]

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Generally speaking, If you have a sled or atv, go with the otter. If you pull by hand, get the fish trap. I have the fish trap guide(new this year) and like it so far. But, I am no crazy about the new seat bracket design. Fitting everything into the sled is a struggle.

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I have the frabill, but the sleds for the otter are better in the snow, but if you have an ATV I think it would be a push.

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Well, I was looking at the Fish Trap Guide which was running about $370. I like the seats but I looks like it would be tight to put all my equipment in it. It needs to be lightweight and I think I am leaning towards the Guide.

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I would look at the polar sports, they are similar to the otters, but are less expensive. If you with in the twin cities area, you can see them a Thorne Brothers in Fridley. or go to http://www.thornebros.com/

[This message has been edited by sledhead (edited 12-11-2003).]

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I'd take a serious look at the Otter Small Den. This is the perfect one man portable ice shelter. It is very comparable in size to the fish trap guide.

fa6d270a.jpg

I traded up from a fish trap guide. The guide is a little heavier than I liked for a one man unit and the Pro in my opinion is a little small. The Otter small Den is just the right size to fit a full size gas auger and a couple buckets. The sleds are heavier duty and deeper, the door design is better (major flaw in the fish trap unit), Otter has plenty of canvas (so that the door comes down completely to the ice), and the seat is much more comfortable. Also, if your using an ATV you can get a nice hitch for the Otter units.

Specs.(W is from back of sled to front door)
Otter Small Den
56"L x 69"W x 62"H
43 lbs.
Fish Trap Pro
43"L x 78"W x 60"H
47 lbs.
Fish Trap Guide
60"L x 81"W x 60"H
62 lbs.
I found that extra (W) on the guide to be of no use. The distance from where you sit to the door (if you have your holes close enough to jig from your seat, you won't use the extra width). You don't gain much in room on the Guide vs. the Otter Den (while your almost 20 lbs. heavier).

Good luck with your decision!

[This message has been edited by Dan Wood (edited 12-11-2003).]

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I had an XL Twin and sold it to buy a Fish Trap Voyager. I have been much more satisfied with the FTV. I liked it so much, I went out and also bought a Pro for early and late ice.

------------------
Love them 'Pout!

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You guys aren't helping any. Just kidding the dens sounds great and it is on sale but I'll have to buy a seat.

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I have a fishtrap Voyager, & like it but it's too big to handle alone.

I'm also looking for a one-man, & like the Otter, but $249 for the tent + $40 for a sled + $70 for a seat seems a bit steep. The Pro is $269. 90 bucks will buy a lot of minnows.

Paul

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Let's see,
I had my Otter Den for 5 years and just sold it That unit cost me a little over $15 a year to use.

You bet, I would rather go in style with an Otter. Especially considering the Fishtrap will cost me the same over 5 years to use. Might as well have the better portable.

As for the Frabill, don't count them out either. Solid value for the style of fishing it's built for.

While we're at it..be sure to look at the Eskimo line-up. They've really improved their units coming into this year.

http://otteroutdoors.com

http://frabill.com

http://ardisam.com - Eskimo

[This message has been edited by Rick (edited 12-11-2003).]

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I just looked at them tonight, (just for fun I have one that works fine for me) and if I had to buy one I'd buy an otter. They seemed the sturdiest of the bunch, and the solid frame work was nice. My only grip is I wish they made them with the reflectors already on the canvas.

[This message has been edited by mnrstrider (edited 12-11-2003).]

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I would definately go with the Otter Sled! I used mine tonight and it worked flawlesely setting up and down. If you want a lightweight sled to pull by hand, then Pick a trap model but if you want something to pull across a lake for miles on end then buy an Otter! Bruce Mosher

------------------
Bruce Mosher,www.icebusterbobbers.com

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what about the Eskimo QuickflipII? I am getting one of these. $295 with bench. the price can't be beat. As for durability, there all the same if you care about your stuff. More flap material around the bottom than the fish trap guide. Will seal up better. Personally, i think the Otters are over priced. They have nice sleds but I don't think it's the best overall buy for the buck. My opinion. Ice shelters are kind of a personal fit type thing. I would suggest getting into all of them and setting stuff around you like a vex a heater and look around and you may not know what it is but one will somehow be your favorite.
Good luck in your choice.

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Hi, I bought the Otter Magnum Lodge last year and it worked out great. We used it on a very cold windy day on LOW without any problems. We also dragged it from shore on Devils Lake. We load all of our gear including Jiffy auger in the tub and are able to pull it across ice and snow with ease (by hand). Yes, it is heavier than others, but they are a well made product. We have also pulled for short distances behind my Yukon with no problems. You won't go wrong with the Otter. Good luck!

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Thanks to everyone for responding. I have not decided yet. I am going out today and I am going to check out all of them. I have it narrowed down to the the Guide and the Medium lode or the Den. I have looked at the Quickflip II and it seamed a little small but maybe they are bigger this year. I don't know, the XLTwin sure is nice also. But I will take everyones recomendations into account. Good Luck.

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if the cost of seats in the den is stopping you. a person could use a portable chair till you can afford the otter seats. put rear legs in tub, front on ice.

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I forgot to mention, I originally bought the seats for the Otter Lodge, but they were so heavy and cumbersome, so I opted for some fold up nylon chairs that fit in the tub. I can't say they are the perfect solution so I am still looking. Anybody have any others that work well in these deep tubs? Thanks!

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I like the Otter... and especially, if you are going to be pulling it behind a snowmobile.
It is "extra-beefy" in the sled and the canvas shelter is good'n thick and "well made" ands built to last for years & years... and I think you pay a bit more for that.
Otter also this year sponsored the Ice Leaders I.C.E Series tournament trail... which is sonething extra to think about.
Supporting FM is a good thing. smile.gif
Catch'n
Dave Hoggard

------------------
Fishermen are catch-n on
Catch'n Tackle
For Bass, Walleye, Pike, Lakers, Trout, Panfish
Used by FishingMN Family

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Well guys I think it is for sure the Fish Trap Guide. I do a lot of fishing by myself and I think I've got a good price on one with the Two seats and cover for $370. It is the Green one that has Scheel's name on it.

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I just bought a Frabill Twin a couple of weeks ago. I had always liked them, but could never really justify the purchase. When I saw the new model I didn't like the individual seats. I'm sure they are comfortable, but it seemed like they took up way too much space in the sled.(Yes, I know they are removable) Luckily I found a "new" last years model with the bench seat. If you can find one, that's what I would recommend. You might even get a break on the price...I did.

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I am at the same position. It will be the Otter or the Sportsman Voyager. Both have good deals and It's time Don't You Think
Tom

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