I would love for the boat companies to see this thread and actually use the ideas and input from everyone.
I took the survey from Wakeboard Magazine for "input" on new boat designs. Whoever put the survey together did a ďless than superbĒ job clarifying things and really obtaining useful information on actual boat design. I thought I'd post to gather more useful input from all of you that they will hopefully be able to use to make a super cool wakeboarding boat that we would all want to buy.
Having had 4 MCís, 4 Nautiqueís, and 1 Bu, some items I would want or need in a boat are already available, but this is a quick list of items that I look for or want in any new model of boat, regardless of the brand. I'm sure I'll miss items here but between all of us, we'll cover it.
These items are a must have:
1. Solid, thick, rampy wake, with no curl or white wash, that is quickly adjustable in size for a beginner or a pro using tanks, a wedge, or some other form of weight or drag. (Make it easy for the surfing transition as well.)
2. High enough bow and stern that it doesnít flood from stopping too quickly or hitting a small wave.
3. Telescoping (and adjustable front and back) drivers seat thatís heated (lumbar would be a bonus).
4. Good hole shot and time to plane, with lots of weight (0-25 mph quickly).
5. Better fuel economy (give and take with the hole shot).
6. Cruise control!!! (Perfect Pass).
7. Docking lights built into the hull.
8. Easy access to the oil filter, impeller, and basic maintenance items.
9. Better vinyl that doesnít scratch or mark up easily!! (Iím going to try the new towel covers).
10. Solid, tight feel in the boat (No rattles or vibrations) including the tower.
11. Ergonomically laid-out cockpit. Easy to see and access the controls and switches. Put the stereo volume/att in a good spot!!
12. Reliable transmission, engine, and other operating components.
13. Extended warranties (these are so worth it).
14. Built-in cooler with drain.
I would love to see these items:
1. Hydrogen, fuel cell, ethanol, electric, hybrid, or bio fuel engine (fuel economy and the environment). I would pay up to $10-15k more for this alone if the fuel was readily available.
2. A removable jump seat that fits between the driver and the passenger in the walkway (some have this already).
3. A removable jump seat that fits behind the drivers seat and the wrap around seats to make use of the empty space, and so an additional person that can face backwards. Matt Winans and I came up with a design for this. It wouldnít be hard to make. It even had a cooler.
4. A windshield that allows the driver to speak to the rider in the water without rising above the windshield or yelling.
5. Heated seats for the passengers as well as the drivers (laugh but these are great)!!
6. Better placement of heaters and heater cores. (It seems that you need 2 heater coreís in colder climates and for year-round riding).
7. A shower that actually works well (of the many Iíve had, only 1 consistently worked).
8. More batteries standard with the boat. (We add them anyway to run the stereo, amps, heaters, lights, and accessories.) Save us the time and add at least 1 extra.
9. A price tag of less than $50-$60k for a 21 foot and less than $65k for a 23+ foot.
In addition, these are some of the things I always add to my new boats. (At least on the last few.)
∑ Gator Grip for step areas
∑ Bimini top / shade
∑ Tower lights for the one time a year that you use them
∑ Stereo loud at 80 feet but not killing the ears of those in the boat
∑ Stereo controls on the passenger side and on the transom
∑ Additional batteries
∑ Newt Juice dispenser
∑ Speaker, light, and rack covers/socks (bugs are a pain)
As a side-note, I would also love to see dealers (or insurance companies or the states) have new buyers to do a drive test and review things like, backing, towing, power turns, not pulling up in front of others, courtesy at the launch area, etc. Iím sure some do this but I would love to see more of it. They could renew the test online each year for $10 to refresh the ideas.
Letís see your input on this. I think itís possible for someone to build an awesome boat, even if itís not one of the oneís we are familiar with.