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#12736852 - 04/30/18 02:18 PM 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas
ben_beyer Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/03/09
Posts: 566
Loc: Bryan, TX
My dad used to have a 1648 Jon boat and he never took my brother and I out in saltwater in it. When I was younger he had my grandfather's Mercury 9.8 and then later upgraded to a Mercury 25 outboard. I have a young son now and I'm sure another kid will follow sooner or later. My grandfather has since passed away and we still have his old 9.8. It ran great the last time I used it about 17 years ago and I'm probably going to take it and have it serviced this summer or in the fall just so it will get run and everything checked out. It's not leaking gear oil or anything like that so I'm sure it'll just be to change out the impeller and change out of the gear oil.

I have a kayak currently and I take it out around Port Aransas mostly and in protected areas. While visiting my parents the topic of taking kids fishing came up and I brought up the idea of getting a small Jon boat myself and using the 9.8 to power it initially which my wife was a little taken back by until I told her what a basic Jon boat can be bought new for versus a high end tandem kayak (I.E. Jackson Big Tuna).

I also worked with a couple guys in the past that fished around Corpus Christi and Port Lavaca in Jon boats around 16'.

If I bought a Jon boat, I'd probably either get a 1448 or 1648 just because I would want the stability of the wider hull and a 1542 would be the only other option. Additionally I would want something that could handle a bigger outboard like a 25 in case I ever upgrade my motor as well or my dad sells me his 25 that he still has.

My question is 2 part:

A) Am I crazy for taking a Jon boat in areas that I would take a kayak (depth of water being taken in to account too) and maybe a little further?
B) Should I only look at 1648's or could a 1448 be OK too?

Just thinking of something that would have a little better performance with the 9.8 in the 1448 and if I did upgrade the motor to a 25, then I could sell the 1448 and get a 1648.

I don't fish every weekend and a 1448 would be OK on the lakes around here in Bryan/College Station. Additionally I just am thinking of something that would be easily affordable and if both kids want to go fishing, then I could accommodate them and the basic gear needed to teach them to fish. Or if I wanted something that could get me to further places than a kayak. I would never take this in a major pass, across a larger bay like Corpus Christi bay but possibly a smaller bay, nor would I take this to the jetty's or offshore.

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#12737137 - 04/30/18 05:25 PM Re: 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas [Re: ben_beyer]
IslandJim Offline
Angler

Registered: 07/08/14
Posts: 366
Loc: Rockport, TX
ben: Like you, I have a fishing kayak I use in the Rockport flats. Works great.

Back in 1959, my Dad bought a 12-foot flat-bottomed aluminum rowboat: 36" transom, pointy bow. He used it about 20 years, sold it to a cousin. About 3 years back, I saw it in a field, full of water. My nephew had it and I asked him to let me have it. Fast-forward: I totally overwhelmed it, painted and updated it. 40 pound Minn-Kota TM, 1961 Johnson 5.5 Twin OB, two folding seats. I was able to get a TPWD title. It will zoom along at 14 MPH! You can see a pic in the JonBoat section on this forum.

Back to your questions: Yes, you can use a flat-bottom skiff almost like a kayak. I do. My 12/36 is a little tippy. A 14/48 would be much more stable. BUT! If you're gonna do the skinny water, you have to keep it very, very light. There will be times when you have to push off the sand flats, and oyster reefs, and a wide, heavy skiff isn't gonna be easy to get off. Been there. Lighthouse Lakes can be done. But, don't build in a big casting deck, live fish or bait wells, because you're gonna get heavy real quick. I call my skiff a Low-Tech Poling Skiff!

If you keep the skiff light, a 9.9 will work fine. Make sure your prop can get out of the mud. I had to raise the transom on my skiff, because my 5.5 Johnson has a 20" transom height. Lots of times, I have had to use the TM to get back to the 6" water!

Another hint: If you use your antique outboard, dump the points and condensers and put in the semi-conductor (chain saw)sensors for the ignition. About $22 for a pair. Twenty-first century technology and no moving parts.

Good luck! IslandJim
_________________________
I'm an Eighth Day Adventist. On the Eighth Day, God went fishing!

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#12737311 - 04/30/18 07:54 PM Re: 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas [Re: ben_beyer]
Alumacraft 14 Offline
Angler

Registered: 02/24/06
Posts: 300
Loc: Texas
10 years fishing baffin bay in a 1438 and a 1648, 1650 and now I am in a fiberglass 1772. It can handle more than protected water my friend. But you are going to need more HP. Riveted 1448 a 15hp and 1648/50 25hp. Riveted hull = lighter = shallow draft = less hp. Mount that motor 5 inch set back with cavitation plate about 2 inches above hull line. You will easily handle 1ft of water on plane, the boat will draft in 3 inches ez. Keep it light a nimble, no decking, bare hull. I use a 100 quart ice chest, that I devided, gear on one side, food/drinks on the other side. Mounted rod holders to it and a few gear trays. Small igloo chest with air stone as a live well. I weigh 250lbs and my buddy weighs 180. The 1648 with a 25hp hauls a** at 27-30 mph.the 1448 with 15hp ran 16-19mph. The main thing is getting on plane and that 9.9 won't do it easily if at all. 6 gallons of gas will get you about 55 mile range with both.

Wind anything over 15 knots will be a beating. But if you can run shallow and close to shore you will be alright. One thing I kept in my boat was a small deep cycle battery, size of a riding lawnmower battery. For duel bilge pumps, lights, fishfinder/gps and led lights for floor.

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#12737488 - 04/30/18 10:03 PM Re: 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas [Re: ben_beyer]
sticknstring Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 04/24/18
Posts: 53
Loc: The hill country
I've been running aluminum for many years, Alumacraft 14 couldn't have said it better- a lot of great info! I think the 16' is a no brainer. Good luck-have fun

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#12737528 - 04/30/18 10:35 PM Re: 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas [Re: ben_beyer]
ben_beyer Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/03/09
Posts: 566
Loc: Bryan, TX
I probably wouldn't get too shallow to begin with and I wouldn't try to get up on plane with the outboard in anything less than 2 feet. Or at least at first to prevent hitting the lower unit on the bottom at least.

Maybe I can get my dad to part with his 25 too but I doubt it. He's been talking about getting rid of his Ranger and getting a smaller boat to put the 25 on but he hasn't been in the Ranger in 9 years now so who knows if he will do anything with it after all.

And I could always look for a clean used motor that is bigger and just keep my grandfather's 9.8 around in case I just need a motor for some reason.

I also have a Raymarine Dragonfly on my kayak so I'd just get another transducer for it and probably run it off of the same battery I use in my kayak. I was also planning on keeping it light and simple but also getting a push pole and a trolling motor to get around in the skinny areas.

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#12737687 - 05/01/18 07:41 AM Re: 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas [Re: ben_beyer]
Alumacraft 14 Offline
Angler

Registered: 02/24/06
Posts: 300
Loc: Texas
If you are looking used I would recommend the 1999-2006 mercury 2 stroke motor 15-25hp depending on boat length. Very good power to weight ratio, bulletproof design, easy to work on, no paddle shifter.

You will be able to get up in 2ft of water, these boat if kept light will take off pretty straight. I keep weight forward to help with that. You just have to play around with it. I can get up in anything over 15 inches I would say, but I always play it safe, no reason to tear up my prop.

Good luck buddy and have fun with those kiddos. Mine are growing up, but they still hang out on the water with me every now and then. Best days of my life for sure!





Edited by Alumacraft 14 (05/01/18 08:38 AM)

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#12737738 - 05/01/18 08:21 AM Re: 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas [Re: ben_beyer]
ben_beyer Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/03/09
Posts: 566
Loc: Bryan, TX
How different are the 1999-2006 from the 1989-1998?

My dad's 25 is probably a 1990 or 1991.

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#12737785 - 05/01/18 08:51 AM Re: 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas [Re: ben_beyer]
Alumacraft 14 Offline
Angler

Registered: 02/24/06
Posts: 300
Loc: Texas
If the motor is Japanese made then there won't be much of a difference as far as the engine design goes. Your dad's is over 25 years old, so some rubber hoses may be brittle and probably the linkage grease is dry. May wanna to a once over for preventative maintence. Ethonal wasn't in the gas back in those days either, so you might want to replace the fuel lines that are compatible with 10% ethonal. Definitely replaced the fuel pump diaphragm kit on the side of the carb, new one are compatible (this is real easy and cheap to do).


Edited by Alumacraft 14 (05/01/18 08:53 AM)

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#12737873 - 05/01/18 09:40 AM Re: 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas [Re: ben_beyer]
ben_beyer Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/03/09
Posts: 566
Loc: Bryan, TX
Were those Mercury's Japanese made back then?

I actually had his 1648 with the 25 in 2010 when I lived in College Station before (moved back to the area late 2016). It was serviced with a carb rebuild that year so it might already have the ethanol compatible diaphragms and fuel lines in it. I ran gas with ethanol in the motor that year and I ran the motor at about 25% throttle until it ran out of gas before I took it back to my dad but I would still take it and have it serviced the same as the 9.8.

And I know the guy he sold the 1648 to. I could probably get it for cheap since the new owner hasn't used it once but it needs to be repainted. Right now I just don't have the garage space for a 16 footer which is why I am interested in a 1448.


Edited by ben_beyer (05/01/18 09:41 AM)

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#12737973 - 05/01/18 10:32 AM Re: 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas [Re: ben_beyer]
ScooterG Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/21/05
Posts: 868
Loc: College Station
Ben, ur in luck. I live in Bryan and have had many of the combinations that you are talking about. I currently have a 15 52 Alweld with a 30 hp Tohatsu. My brother in law has a 15 48 with a Suzuki 30. both are true flat bottoms. His has tilt trim and a kick up plate that set his motor back a bit. Both are long shaft boats and motors.
Used 1448 boats are very hard to come by. The local dealer here is way too high. My other buddy has a 1448 open hull with a Tohatsu 20. This is a very good combination. The hull was 2k about 3 years ago Heritage marine in Beaumont is our choice on the boats.
The 1542 riveted boat from Academy is a good choice at around $1300.

We use our boats primarily in the Brazos river but I have had mine in east bay last year. I had it in 1.5-2 foot waves on Somerville back in March. Not fun but it will do it. The 52 inch floor was worth every penny. It's stable and drafts shallow if you keep the weight low.
PM me if you want to check mine out sometime.
_________________________
ScoooooooooooterGGGGGGG

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#12737976 - 05/01/18 10:36 AM Re: 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas [Re: ben_beyer]
ScooterG Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/21/05
Posts: 868
Loc: College Station
Ben, ur in luck. I live in Bryan and have had many of the combinations that you are talking about. I currently have a 15 52 Alweld with a 30 hp Tohatsu. My brother in law has a 15 48 with a Suzuki 30. both are true flat bottoms. His has tilt trim and a kick up plate that set his motor back a bit. Both are long shaft boats and motors.
Used 1448 boats are very hard to come by. The local dealer here is way too high. My other buddy has a 1448 open hull with a Tohatsu 20. This is a very good combination. The hull was 2k about 3 years ago Heritage marine in Beaumont is our choice on the boats.
The 1542 riveted boat from Academy is a good choice at around $1300.

We use our boats primarily in the Brazos river but I have had mine in east bay last year. I had it in 1.5-2 foot waves on Somerville back in March. Not fun but it will do it. The 52 inch floor was worth every penny. It's stable and drafts shallow if you keep the weight low.
PM me if you want to check mine out sometime.
_________________________
ScoooooooooooterGGGGGGG

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#12738149 - 05/01/18 12:00 PM Re: 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas [Re: ben_beyer]
ben_beyer Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/03/09
Posts: 566
Loc: Bryan, TX
Cool, cool.

I looked at an Alumacraft 1448 and it was about $2500-3000 with a trailer new.

I don't mind buying a used boat but some are newer and are in worse condition than my dads 1648. I'll look in to those Alweld's too though.

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#12738572 - 05/01/18 04:32 PM Re: 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas [Re: ben_beyer]
ScooterG Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/21/05
Posts: 868
Loc: College Station
Good deal. I re-read my post. My 1552 was $3000 for the hull. Mine has the livewell center seat, tall transom, lights and 2 drain plugs.
The 1448 with no center seat was $1999. These boats are 100 gauge all welded. I've had some of the old riveted boats and they drove me nuts. The new ones seem to be much better. The one thing you have to watch out for on the 80 guage boats is how hard you crank them down on your trailer. If you fill the boat with weight while hauling and the front is "sucked down" you can crack the boat around the eye. The narrow boats like the 42" really do better with the lighter weight. The 52" doesn't seem to care. I did have to upgrade my trailer to handle the weight of this boat.
We drag our boats off the trailer and shove them down the hill into the river most of the time. The lighter boats would make that easier. Good luck finding a good 25 Merc. They are amazing and hard to come by now days.
_________________________
ScoooooooooooterGGGGGGG

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#12739759 - 05/02/18 10:59 AM Re: 14-16' Jon Boat for Protected Areas [Re: ben_beyer]
Alumacraft 14 Offline
Angler

Registered: 02/24/06
Posts: 300
Loc: Texas
Check out the Lowe L1448. The alumacraft 1448 looks to have a dead rise in the floor. I rather have a flat bottom. That dead rise gets old standing on and your gear will always slide to the center and never sits flat. If you ever do decided to add a floor, the dead rise will make it more difficult.

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