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danfall

Right sizing the boat.

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I am in the market for a boat for the great lakes/bigger water and I'm wondering how big to go. I've been out on pretty bad waves in a 16' Lund Predator, but I couldn't fish.

I'd like a couple of things for sure in the new boat. An aft cockpit for fishing, with a for'd cabin/cuddy. I really like the Bayliner Trophy boats, and I've seen them ranging from 20' to 25' feet that look like they are trailerable and under the 8' DOT requirement. I'd like less power, versus more, and I typically stay within 10 miles of shore unless there was a freakishly calm weather forecast.

How different is a 20 footer versus a 24 footer for handling the waves, for example?

And does anyone have any boats they really preferred for handling in rougher water?

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Lots of variable in boat designs. My Alumacraft 175 Trophy wont fish in the waters we easily fish in our Tracker Targa 17. Now a 18-20' glass will fish water the Targa won't. Glass or Alum are both different and even that changed from brand to brand and year to year.

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If I were looking for a new boat in that size range I would probably go with a 'glass hull but I definitely would test drive one of those welded aluminum boats as I have heard lots of good reports about them.

Steve

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I would look at hewes craft. My old man has a 20 ft. sea runner with a 2 ft. extended transom. The boat is welded aluminum and has alot of options as far as a cuddy and hard top vs soft top. If you want to know any specifics you can email me. I have used this boat in big waves and rough water and it handles unbelievably. Also the floor layout really is nice, everything is open and spacious. If you are looking for a stylish boat like a sea ray, this isn't the boat for you. This is a fishing machine and its looks are exactly that. I personally like the look...I know they do make a cuddy and fishing cab, not sure if this one has the cuddy...

573-Boat2022-1.jpg

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For the 15 years prior to moving to Minnesota I fished Lake Huron out of a 23' Aluminum Hulled Crestliner (was my grandpa's now my borthers). It has a Cuddy in it also, which made for a great storage area. I am guessing you will be fishing Superior and Michigan which tend to get bigger waves than Huron. I have had that boat out in 6 footers before. Had to anchor from the front while fishing for Perch and drive it slow, but handled the waves fine. I wouldn't take it out in anything bigger. The best part of a boat like that compared to what I typically fish out of here in Minnesota is the room. You can fish 4 guys in that size of a boat very comfortably. Remember Michigan is two poles so that is four guys running 8 lines. Absolutely a fiberglass hull will plow right through some of the bigger waves compared to the aluminum, but keep in mind the difference in weight (towing) on a boat that size.

I don't think I really answered any of your questions, but my opionion is 22' or 23' is plenty big for most situations on the Great Lakes. Also..... I have been out 18 miles on the boat I mentioned.

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go take a look at the warrior 2300. The only prolem with that is they only come in a side consel. they don't have a cockpit. but they are one hell of a boat

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