I have a 1996 Ski 176. It's a little bit smaller than the 196. I run with a 580lb sac and 100lbs of sand in the back, a 280lb sac on each side of the engine, and a 280lb sac plus 100lbs of sand up front. That's 1620 pounds of ballast plus 3-4 people.
The wake is pretty nice. I've also had no complaints. Although, I would like to make it bigger. The problem with boats like ours is the draft (or is it freeboard?). You can only sink these boats in the water so much.
With the set up I use above, my swim platform is about 3-4 inches under water. The water line is also just below the through hull fitting for my bildge pump. I'm not sure I can add anymore weight without taking in water?
I have found that the set up I mentioned above works best for my boat. Earlier this week I experimented with moving some of the weight from the front to the back. Surprisingly this made the wake much worse. Although I believe more weight in the back will benefit most boats. I guess because of the small size of my boat it didn't work out as well for me?
(Message edited by nauty on July 30, 2004)