|Well let me start off by saying that I’m new to the forum and have really enjoyed these threads. I’m glad I found this place |
Here’s my question…. Prepare yourselves
I’m 28 years old, married and have grown up in a semi “boating” family I would say. We had a 79 Chaparral deep-v I/O boat growing up that my Dad had purchased new and was used primarily for cruising, fishing and water skiing/tubing. Lots of good times on this boat, when I was about 16 years of age my Dad decided to sell the boat and he did so… never to own another.
We have many friends of the family that are all different types of boater… some with big cruisers, some with Nautiques, etc. and have always had access to these boats and still spend time occasionally at the lakes around my area.
The wife and I are now working to start a family and we’d like to buy a boat. I plan to do a lot of the same activities with this boat as my family and I did growing up. (occasional fishing, cruising, but more water sports than anything) I’ve been a slalom skier since I was about 12 and that’s about it… have played with kneeboards and a few other water toys but have never wakeboarded before however, I’m really interested in the sport and definitely want to get into it as does my wife.
Here’s my dilemma:
What type of boat should I get?... (this should cause an explosion) My Dad continues to preach about how a runabout I/O is the most versatile and certainly far more affordable than a ski/wakeboard boat… as well as more roomy
I’ve been reading a lot about different boats and I’ve recently fell in love with the new Nautique 236… it’s v-drive which is nice and has a very roomy looking layout (as does the 226) not to mention it’s a “crossover” boat… not sure if that is really all that special but from what I’ve read it seems to be good for both skiing and wakeboarding.
I naturally love the looks and performance of most of the ski/wakeboard boats so I’m not dead set on Correct Craft as they are rather pricey. The one thing that is a definite must is the ability for this boat to fit my needs… I want to be able to ski, wakeboard, fit more than 3-4 people comfortably, fish, etc.
I guess I’m seeking the ultimate boat.. one that does it all. Money is not so much an obstacle since this will hopefully be the only boat I ever buy
We have a summer boat show coming up next month which my wife and I plan on attending to get a feel for what’s out there… as well as another show toward the end of the year. We’d like to spend this time doing the research and then make a purchase next year…we hope
Any info you all could provide would be greatly appreciated
|Fishing is kind of tough in a v-drive or d-drive with the prop and shaft being permanently mounted where they are. Also I am not aware of any mounts for a trolling motor on any models and reverse is kind of sketchy making fishing really hard in tight places. |
I started off wanting a boat to do all the things you wanted and went with what your dad suggested. I/O is the way to go as you can get fishing wells, bow mounted trolling motors, come in all sizes, and you can manuver them fairly well. They can be set up to be the jack of all trades and the master of none. Of course once you start wakeboarding you will become addicted and not care much about most of the other activities and will want a true wakeboard boat then! four boat later that is what I have now. Until then an I/O is quite versatile and will certainly introduce you to this great activity.
|I guess I should clarify on the "fishing" part.. the only real kind of fishing we ever did growing up was in the evenings and at night when the skiing was over. (there's not much to do back at the campsite usually) And we just basically got out in the lake which was usually pretty empty at that time and dropped anchor and dropped our lines in. We never were diehard fishermen or went into tight areas to fish. |
I've got a good friend who has a 85 Nautique and his wife loves to fish and he likes to ski. The go out all the time and she'll pull him around the lake for a little while and then afterwards they'll stop and she'll fish.
I know without a doubt that I plan to spend 90% of my time skiing and hopefully wakeboarding so should I still consider an I/O? One of the things I didn't like about our boat growing up was how the stern would sink down and the hull would point to the sky at throttle. Since this was a deep-v boat the speeds it would require in order for this boat to really plain out and level a bit were way to fast for pulling a skier. Consequently the boat was always pointing up and it made for some awkward driving. Not to mentioned terrible on gas...
I really love the lower cruising speeds of the inboards not to mention the torque they bring.
|For skiing you want a small wake. to get a small wake you need a light boat. That boat is over 4300 lbs. If you really want to ski I think you'll need to sacrifice some size. My boat's 1.5' shorter and 4" narrower which adds up to a lot smaller. It's also 1100 lbs. lighter, which is an awful lot. |
Your Dad is wrong about an I/O being more roomy. A 23' inboard has the same kind of space as a 25' I/O so the 236 carries 14 and, for comparison, a Sea Ray Select Sundeck 240 is more than a foot longer but carries 10. (and weighs 500 lbs more)
I have a young family and grew up with an I/O. I also owned an 18' I/O for many years. Having an inboard is MUCH better for my family than the I/O was.
Look at some smaller boats, ride behind the ones you like, including the 236. When you demo you will change your mind about some things and find out that others are different than what you were told. (Even if it was me).
My wife got tired of demo rides but is completely happy with what we decided on.
|I buy a tourny boat and a 12 foot Aluminum. Problem solved.|
|You are going to get very biased opinions on this site toward the inboard. I would go with an inboard and if skiing is your thing, go with a DD. You will be able to get a great ski. Yeah you can drop anchor and throw a fishing line in, but when the water gets calm, thats when it's time to wakeboard! |
Most I/Os I have been on would plane about 16-20MPH (same speed as inboards) so your model may have been unusual and you can get the same slower cruising speeds on most I/Os.
|"The wife and I are now working to start a family and we’d like to buy a boat." |
"I’ve been a slalom skier since I was about 12 and that’s about it… have played with kneeboards and a few other water toys but have never wakeboarded before"
"I want to be able to ski, wakeboard, fit more than 3-4 people comfortably, fish, etc."
"since this will hopefully be the only boat I ever buy"
I would try to get that last statement "only boat I ever buy" out of your mind and then your options will immediately expand and your decision will be easier.
Based upon your above statements, my suggestion is buy USED then take a year or two to decide if you love it and if you prefer casual water sports (combo of tubing/kneeboarding/skiing/wakeboarding) and cruising/fishing or want to advance further. Once that decision is made (based on your experience), you can then move up and not take a bath.
You may very well be a candidate for an I/O (as your first/test boat).
|We had the same debate some years ago. We went with a used direct drive open bow. At the time we chose that (over an i/o) because: more fun to drive, seemed like it would take us farther in water sports (didn't want to have to upgrade in a year), seemed safer with kids with the prop underneath and swim deck in the back, good wake when the wife's ski came out, plenty of room for our family and more. |
It doesn't sound like you need the "top end wakeboat". We didn't either (still don't), but having had both (i/o and inboard) there really is a big difference between a comp style boat and an i/o. From what you're saying, I would suggest a used open bow dd boat - something with ballast tanks. I think that will take you quite far in the watersports arena, provide a nice waterski wake, be a great family boat, and not break the bank.
|By Rod (rvh3) on Wednesday, June 18, 2008 - 4:59 pm: