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Jan 23rd, 2013
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Advice on first boat #13524368 04/19/20 02:29 AM
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sketch Online Content OP
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So I've been looking at purchasing my first boat for the past couple of years, researching, saving, and such. Past 2 months I've looked for some great deals and now is the time to pull the trigger. Been waiting on that OMG THATS A GREAT DEAL boat. Seen a few but was too slow. Have a couple I'm looking at now that i plan to go see this week. One is a 2014 Nitro Z9 loaded out and the other is a 2001 sprint 221 that's in real good shape. Both less than 500 hrs on motor. What's yalls opinions on getting an older boat as first boat vs a newer one? Even though it is my own first boat, I am not new to it totally. Fished tournaments in college and meet up with a buddy to fish outta his boat every chance I get. But now my boy is old enough that we need our own. Don't figure I can go wrong either way, and currently leaning toward a newer model, just looking for insight I may have overlooked. FWIW I do plan to get back into tournament fishing once everything settles down. Thanks

Re: Advice on first boat [Re: sketch] #13524418 04/19/20 03:19 AM
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Have the boat chexked out by your mechanic, that's my little nugget of advice.

Re: Advice on first boat [Re: sketch] #13524477 04/19/20 05:27 AM
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How good are you at DIY on general repairs? Not meaning take the motor apart, but capable of replacing things that get old, wear out, or otherwise reach end of life (fuel lines, filters, pumps, switches, etc.) as examples. Some people can handle such things in stride, and others only know how to hold a fishing rod. What boat you buy should be influenced by this. A boat you get at "such a great deal" may cost a lot more if you are the type who needs to pay someone else for all repairs/maintenance, large AND small. I agree you need to get a mechanic of your choice to check it out. Get an engine report and have him do a compression check. It will be money well spent.

Re: Advice on first boat [Re: sketch] #13524709 04/19/20 02:18 PM
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ANYTHING that was a "Travis Edition" is built to the lowest,cheapest standards possible. Make sure that sprint wasn't one of those.


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Re: Advice on first boat [Re: sketch] #13524746 04/19/20 02:40 PM
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(1) What Pat said.
(2) What Flippin-Out said
(3) Ask the folks in the Bass Fishing section if they know of good deal out there. Newer boat, lesser hours.
(4) Older boats give me the jitters, though they look good and have been taken care of on the outside may not be the story inside.
Whatever you decide have it checked by YOUR mechanic!


FishKen
Re: Advice on first boat [Re: sketch] #13524794 04/19/20 03:07 PM
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Motor, Motor, Motor,......Have it looked at by a reputable real mechanic...get a compression test and hours readout.
ask for any and all maintenance records..
If I was selling my boat, I would have that done to show to all prospective buyers...buyer beware !!! fish





Re: Advice on first boat [Re: sketch] #13524978 04/19/20 04:28 PM
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sketch Online Content OP
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Thanks for the advice. I feel comfortable with minor/moderate mechanical/repair issues (buddy's boat is pushing 30 years old). Definitely going to have a mechanic check done. Ones I'm considering seriously offered records up front or put me in contact with their marine mechanic. Guess my question is, theoretically, if you had a 20 yr old boat and a 5 yr old boat, and both are sound, priced right, and check all the items in the want list, which do you choose? Buddy of mine is on the side of buying older, sell in 5 yrs or so and get another, and use the money saved to buy more gear lol. Just curious if anyone's been in this boat before (pun intended lol) Thanks

Re: Advice on first boat [Re: sketch] #13525156 04/19/20 06:02 PM
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Big, heavy fiberglass boats ride better, cost more, are harder to maintain and require bigger motors which are also usually harder and more expensive to maintain. Aluminum boats don't ride as well, are cheaper, and can use a smaller motor which general is easier to maintain.

Newer is probably better assuming the condition is the same on both. Accessories like electronics, trolling motors, etc are also important and make a huge difference in value.

If the motors are EFI you can have them checked to see how many hours they have on them and at what RPM the hours were accumulated. Most fishing boats have the majority of the hours at very low RPM and very few hours above about 4500.

You need to have the hours and the compression checked on any used motor and preferably a leak down test performed.

Good luck,

Wayne


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Re: Advice on first boat [Re: sketch] #13525172 04/19/20 06:15 PM
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Without seeing, I'd be inclined to purchase the Nitro.


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Re: Advice on first boat [Re: sketch] #13535957 04/27/20 01:45 PM
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Get a small boat to start. Use it a few years and once you decide you like to fish, then upgrade. You can get most of your money back on that small boat. People make a mistake in their time management when buying a boat; get a huge expensive new boat, only to find out they don’t have time to fish or maintain the boat. Or it’s too big to handle and you never get the confidence you need to use it regularly... then it sits for years before you get rid of it.

With a small used boat, you have a better chance at success. If you decide you don’t like it, sell it and you’re done without costing you an arm and a leg for a bad misjudgment
Tim


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Re: Advice on first boat [Re: sketch] #13536044 04/27/20 02:50 PM
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The newer technology in the motor and electronics is really nice and efficient and should perform better. Old school motor might be simpler to work on but the electronics ( depth finder etc.) would be light years ahead on a newer boat.


Just because you can, doesn't mean you should!
Re: Advice on first boat [Re: lurenthewind] #13536281 04/27/20 05:03 PM
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My input is hang on for a few more weeks!! IMHO there are going to be a lot of boats on the market if the economy doesn't pick up! And, IMHO, buy as new as possible with as much stuff (electronics - Power Poles - racks, storage, better batteries, best troll motor, etc). If you are going try fishing you are going to need every advantage you can get!

Re: Advice on first boat [Re: sketch] #13536336 04/27/20 05:33 PM
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Thanks for the input guys! In finalizing the paperwork on a 2015 z9. Feel like the price was more than fair, mechanic gave it 2 thumbs up, and it is loaded. I will post pics when I get it home (hard to sleep nowadays, to excited) and can't wait to see the look on my 8 yr olds face (he has no clue). Thanks!

Re: Advice on first boat [Re: sketch] #13538713 04/29/20 04:17 AM
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Originally Posted by sketch
Thanks for the input guys! In finalizing the paperwork on a 2015 z9. Feel like the price was more than fair, mechanic gave it 2 thumbs up, and it is loaded. I will post pics when I get it home (hard to sleep nowadays, to excited) and can't wait to see the look on my 8 yr olds face (he has no clue). Thanks!

Congrats. He’s gonna be excited too. Make sure to take a boaters ED course online to refresh (or just to learn) new safety measures.


Eat. Sleep. Fish.
Re: Advice on first boat [Re: sketch] #13539528 04/29/20 09:14 PM
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I would personally not buy either one. Keep looking. Sprint and Nitro's don't have the best of reps. Buying old is not a bad thing if the boat has been well taken care of (like garage kept, not just covered). If you do decide to buy older, I'd look for Bass Cat, Ranger, maybe later model Champion. I own a '93 Bass Cat Pantera II that has been garaged kept its whole life, and it shows. It's been a heck of a boat.

Engine wise, you can get burned with a later model just the same as an older model and the repairs will likely cost you more.

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