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#11490192 - 03/20/16 10:09 PM Opinions on first glass boat
Eric F. Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 03/10/16
Posts: 6
Loc: All Across Texas
Hey all,

I've read these forums for years actually. Mostly looking for fishing reports for various Texas water bodies and tips for such water bodies. I decided to actually become a member recently but I just want to say thanks off the bat for the great amount of help this community has provided to me in becoming in a better and more educated angler.

I'm looking to buy my first glass boat and I'm looking in the pre-owned market. I've only owned jon boats up to this point and am looking to get into fishing bass competitively in smaller circuits and also upgrading the boat in general. I've read the advice on getting the biggest boat you can however, but, I don't feel I really need to go 80mph on a 22 ft boat with a 250 to be happy. I think a 115-150 2-smoker on a 17-19 foot boat will suit me fine for my first true "bass" boat. And quite honestly, sometimes I love just fishing jigs for bluegills, redear and crappie more than bass. Anyway, that's a little of my background.

My priorities on the boat (mostly OB) are that it be, in this order-

1. Reliable. Reliable. Reliable - this is a must above all. I don't care about fuel economy or even performance to a certain extent. Cruising on buddy's boats at 35-50 MPH has always been plenty fine for me. I raced two stroke carbed dirt bikes so I am familiar with those types of older engines as well and their maintenance
2. See number one

Budget around $15-20,000

Here are a few of the boats I have found on craigslist and this site and would love y'alls opinion on what route I should take or point me in the general direction on age of boats, what OBs/hulls to avoid and like I said earlier, what would be the most reliable combo out of the bunch. I also am looking for a boat with a jackplate and was wondering if I should just throw out the window any boat without on already on it or install one when I purchase the boat.

1- 2006 Nitro 482/Z6 with Merc 115 Optimax, Owner says less than 20 hours. (AKA Never used) $12,000

https://dallas.craigslist.org/dal/boa/5496209760.html
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2- 2009 Ranger 170VS with Merc 115 Optimax, $15,500

https://dallas.craigslist.org/dal/boa/5480562770.html
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3- 2004 Triton TR-196 with Merc XR6 150, comes with jackplate and KeelGuard (Have a guard is a peace of mine to me to let me know they somewhat cared about protecting the hull) $13,000

https://austin.craigslist.org/boa/5473262538.html
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4- 1999 Triton TR21 with Evinrude 225, shop selling it says 135-140 compression on all cylinders, has jackplate and hydraulic steering. Biggest boat of the bunch $15,999

https://odessa.craigslist.org/bod/5485645754.html
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5- 2007 Nitro 591 with Merc 150 EFI

http://texasfishingforum.com/forums/ubbt...ric#Post9580331
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6- 2007 Triton TR186 with Merc 150 optimax. Marina selling says only 3 HOURS on boat and motor so essentially brand new.

http://texasfishingforum.com/forums/ubbt...Ho#Post11484257



Anyway, those four boats give you an idea of what I'm in the market for and would love opinions, recommendations, etc...

Update: Edited to add more boats

Thank you all in advance and tight lines to all!


Edited by Eric F. (03/20/16 10:19 PM)

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#11490268 - 03/20/16 10:38 PM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: Eric F.]
Bobby Milam Online   content
Extreme Angler

Registered: 07/13/14
Posts: 2014
Loc: Arlington
They aren't saying largest boat possible for power. It is for the ride and fishing ability in rough water. I got a lesson the hard way on that today at Fork. I thought that I was going to sink my little boat in the rough water. I was drenched as if I had jumped into the lake. At the ramp, everyone else looked dry. You want to also think about live well size and storage. Storage is always a premium on bass boats.

Have them checked out by a mechanic that you trust. The Ranger is probably the best brand that you mentioned and should have a good ride.

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#11490277 - 03/20/16 10:44 PM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: Bobby Milam]
Eric F. Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 03/10/16
Posts: 6
Loc: All Across Texas
Ah okay. Thanks for the advice Bobby.

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#11490322 - 03/20/16 11:19 PM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: Eric F.]
Flippin-Out Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 02/25/15
Posts: 1564
Loc: Magnolia, TX
Exactly why is a jackplate so important if you aren't concerned with performance? This one baffles me. Consider that a jackplate can typically be added to any boat without difficulty. Many guys do this themselves if they have access to a hoist. If performance isn't an issue, don't waste your money on one.

Bobby is correct that we aren't focused on horsepower or speed when we say buy the biggest boat you can manage. We're talking about hull length. Adding even one foot of length to the boat you buy can make a huge difference in how it handles a rough lake. Remember, lakes of any size at all are rough more than they're slick.....

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#11490327 - 03/20/16 11:33 PM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: Flippin-Out]
danwill12 Offline
Angler

Registered: 05/30/14
Posts: 333
Loc: Florida
Why a glass boat? As your 1st ? Go look at Rangers 17' aluminum w/75 and buy it new with a warranty.

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#11490328 - 03/20/16 11:33 PM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: Eric F.]
Eric F. Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 03/10/16
Posts: 6
Loc: All Across Texas
Flippin-out,

I've always had the impression, maybe incorrectly, that a jack plate was important to run in shallow waters without trimming up and having the OB at the improper angle ( what I've always done in my aluminum Jon boats because it worked, albeit not what is recommended). Essentially I want the jackplate to help me to plane correctly.

Maybe I used the wrong words when I said performance isn't an issue. What I mean is that I'm not going to split hairs over one OB being 4mph faster than the other and that reliability is more important to me. On that note as well, from what I've read the jackplate by helping to get the OB in the right water will help it keep continuous water into the impeller

This is my first boat over 10hp so I'm just making sure I'll be taking care of it properly so it doesn't give me any issues

Thanks for the advice! Very true in even small lakes being rough, especially if I'll be in windy west Texas fishing some medium sized lakes like Alan Henry or OH Ivie


Edited by Eric F. (03/20/16 11:34 PM)

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#11490332 - 03/20/16 11:40 PM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: danwill12]
Eric F. Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 03/10/16
Posts: 6
Loc: All Across Texas
I've had friends tell me I should skip the hassle of fiberglass and stay aluminum but I was exploring moving to fiberglass mainly for the boat not rocking around as much while fishing stationary or trolling edges with a buddy. I could get an aluminum Ranger or Xpress new like you said for the same price as what I listed but it just seemed a 17-19 foot heavier and more stable fiberglass boat would be the more natural progression for me from a 16ft stern steer Jon boat

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#11490335 - 03/20/16 11:44 PM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: Eric F.]
D Miner Online   content
Outdoorsman

Registered: 03/06/14
Posts: 123
There is a guy selling a certificate (won in a tournament) for a new Ranger Z175 for $19K in the "Boats 4 Sale" section here. Heck of a deal on a new boat.

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#11490369 - 03/21/16 04:13 AM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: Eric F.]
Flippin-Out Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 02/25/15
Posts: 1564
Loc: Magnolia, TX
Originally Posted By: Eric F.
Flippin-out,

I've always had the impression, maybe incorrectly, that a jack plate was important to run in shallow waters without trimming up and having the OB at the improper angle ( what I've always done in my aluminum Jon boats because it worked, albeit not what is recommended). Essentially I want the jackplate to help me to plane correctly.

Maybe I used the wrong words when I said performance isn't an issue. What I mean is that I'm not going to split hairs over one OB being 4mph faster than the other and that reliability is more important to me. On that note as well, from what I've read the jackplate by helping to get the OB in the right water will help it keep continuous water into the impeller

This is my first boat over 10hp so I'm just making sure I'll be taking care of it properly so it doesn't give me any issues

Thanks for the advice! Very true in even small lakes being rough, especially if I'll be in windy west Texas fishing some medium sized lakes like Alan Henry or OH Ivie


Ahhh, if you meant to refer to a hydraulic jackplate, then yes, I do agree that it can be very helpful in shallow water, or even any depth that contains obstacles (such as standing timber). A fixed height manual jackplate must be set at one height that works while running on pad and this doesn't give a whole lot of offset once idling in shallow water as compared to no jackplate. My hydraulic unit gives me an additional 4 inches of height I can dial in when I'm off plane in the shallows. I wouldn't be able to make this configuration change at will if I had a manual jackplate.

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#11490450 - 03/21/16 07:04 AM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: Flippin-Out]
TCK73 Online   content
Extreme Angler

Registered: 03/26/15
Posts: 1888
Loc: Jack County
I would go look at all the ones you listed, and pick the one that is in the best shape and preferred layout. As for Aluminum boats, if you fish in water that has more than light chop, be prepared to have a rough wet ride. I had about forgotten how they can be until last Friday when I fished with a friend in his Al boat. One foot rollers, 18 MPH and wet, noisy and rough.
_________________________


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#11491197 - 03/21/16 12:52 PM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: Eric F.]
Ray Soliz Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 12/19/15
Posts: 1
do not buy Triton their warranty cannot be trusted

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#11491212 - 03/21/16 12:56 PM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: Ray Soliz]
2015fordnut Online   sick
Extreme Angler

Registered: 06/24/09
Posts: 1705
Loc: Garland, TX
Originally Posted By: Ray Soliz
do not buy Triton their warranty cannot be trusted


Why? I've owned mine since new in 2001 and couldn't be happier with the performance and reliability. Just curious why someone would put something like this comment as their first post?
_________________________

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#11491823 - 03/21/16 05:14 PM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: Eric F.]
PlanoKeith Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 01/13/11
Posts: 3408
Loc: Plano Texas
1999 triton i doubt there is any waranty left. But i have one and it handles great in ruff water and is solid. Lots of room and the front and back deck are alot roomier that a champ the same size.
_________________________
Keith smile

www.moestackleshop.com

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#11491954 - 03/21/16 06:46 PM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: Eric F.]
Bobby Milam Online   content
Extreme Angler

Registered: 07/13/14
Posts: 2014
Loc: Arlington
I'd rather buy a used big fiberglass boat than a new aluminum boat any day. Aluminum is fine for some, nothing wrong with it if they make you happy but my next boat is going to be built for comfort on the water. I'm tired of coming home feeling like i just went 18 rounds with Ali. I don't think that any aluminum bass boat will compare

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#11492059 - 03/21/16 07:38 PM Re: Opinions on first glass boat [Re: PlanoKeith]
Eric F. Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 03/10/16
Posts: 6
Loc: All Across Texas
As you said, I doubt most of the boats I listed will have any warranty left. I've heard stories of people having great experiences with their Skeeters, Tritons, Bass tractors, Rangers and likewise people with no so good stories of all brands. Same goes for outboards.

As the earlier poster said as well, I could either get a top of the line aluminum for the price or a lower range fiberglass boat. I think I still want a Fiberglass boat for the stability while fishing standing and fishing with a friend and also not having a sore bottom after running across a bigger lake back to the dock.

So it seems a common recommendation I hear to to go at least 18ft or bigger and basically get whatever boat/OB combo is in the best shape as determined by a third party mechanic. I think that's the route I'll go. I'm not brand biased at the moment and am willing to try out whatever I find that fits my needs the best at the right price.

Thanks for all the help everyone. I am leaning towards the larger Tritons and Nitros I have listed because their OB's have so few hours and are tested for compression and already good.

I'll keep everyone updated if I make a final decision and thank you so much to everyone on the community for the help.

Tight Strings and Good Luck!!

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