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Old     (zulu459)      Join Date: Mar 2008       03-08-2008, 8:02 AM Reply   
Good Morning everyone,
Just moved to Tampa, FL and I'm trying to figure out what boat to buy?

GOAL: Buy the best boat for the money that will provide me with an outstanding wake, durability in salt water environment, minimize excessive costs in fuel consumption and maintenance, and be on the water boarding as much as possible.

BOAT USAGE: Weekend I plan on trailering the boat to fresh water lakes and rivers however during the week I'm surrounded by salt water and I want to wakeboard right after work on tampa bay.

IDEA #1: I know MasterCraft and Tige have some salt water packages but very expensive, but I'm still considering this. Willing to spend 35K max.

IDEA #2: Buy a center console deep V outboard boat and add ballast/tower etc... Problem with this is that I have no idea how the wake will turn out from this setup. The positives are that I could do this setup much cheaper, the boat would be mostly fiberglass so it would hold up better in salt and I could use the boat for other uses like fishing. Wakeboarding is my PRIMARY focus and the main reason for owning the boat.

Any boat recommendations, advice, or past experience would be very appreciated.

I want to hit that water ASAP...please HELP!!!
Old     (mrm2083)      Join Date: Nov 2005       03-08-2008, 8:38 AM Reply   
If the primary use is wakeboarding then buy a wakeboarding boat if not you will regret it. The best thing to do would be to buy a salt water series mastercraft but that will easily cost u in upwards of 60 grand. I have a non salt water series x2 now for 2 years and the only salt water problem i have had has been the exhaust manifolds needing to be replaced at about 2 years (just put apart 600 per every 2 years for this). Other than that with proper maintenance a wakeboarding boat will be fine. And make sure to get fresh water cooling its like an extra 500-1000 dollars and will save your block
Old     (lknboarder)      Join Date: Jan 2008       03-08-2008, 8:56 AM Reply   
finding a used saltwater MasterCraft would be your best bet
Old     (chpthril)      Join Date: Oct 2007       03-08-2008, 10:55 AM Reply   
^ or a Tige with the closed cooling and other salt water stuff
Old     (lknboarder)      Join Date: Jan 2008       03-08-2008, 11:37 AM Reply   
oh I didn't know Tige made a saltwater package
Old     (chpthril)      Join Date: Oct 2007       03-08-2008, 11:57 AM Reply   
Yeah, another idea they stole from MC

Nothing elaborate, just closed cooling, raw water trap, flush hook-up, and something with the steering.
Old     (1boarder_kevin)      Join Date: Mar 2007       03-08-2008, 12:04 PM Reply   
if i remember correctly, the saltwater option from mc runs roughly $4,000
Old     (ncsuuh)      Join Date: Jan 2007       03-08-2008, 2:45 PM Reply   
I am going to be in the exact same situation 6 months from now. I plan on buying a 1999-2002 X-Star/Super Air. I plan on installing a closed cooling system. Do I have to switch ballast pumps for the salt?
Old     (swab791)      Join Date: Mar 2005       03-08-2008, 3:05 PM Reply   

a)100% Closed cooling including exhaust manifolds
b)Tinned wiring w/ upgraded wiring harness
c)Sacrifical Zincs and annodes, fins, platforms etc
d)addtional stainless steel hardware, shocks, scuppers etc
e)Hydraulic steering
f)Galv trailer
g)New 2008 GAUGES for ballast in V-DIG
h)dripless packing
i) composite motor mounts
j) high mount starter and alternator
k) scuppered interior
l) Snap out carpet

a)Extra coat of Engine paint
b)1/2 Looped closed cooling. (Exhaust mainfolds
still corode and need replacement No ZINCS)
c)try to look and act like MasterCraft

"Yeah, another idea they stole from MC
Nothing elaborate, just closed cooling, raw water trap, flush hook-up, and something with the steering."
Old     (chpthril)      Join Date: Oct 2007       03-08-2008, 3:18 PM Reply   

Not sure why this has to be a Tige bashing thread, but, OK
Old     (kko13)      Join Date: Jul 2006       03-08-2008, 6:12 PM Reply   
tk talks out is azz!! i service many tiges in the tampa/st pete area most of wich are used in the salt and holding up quite well. some going on 4 yrs in the salt and yet to replace a single manifold. tige always has the starter up high on all there boats with the marine power engine. you will want a galv. trailer for sure. i put in at the fresh water part of the hillsbourgh river with my 03 tige and take a 20-30 minute ride out to the bay.saves my trailer and flushes the motor on the way back in. tige has the saltwater struts and steering. brad PM me i would be glad to put you in touch with some tige owners that use their boat in salt and can give you a real world answer to your questions. the problem is going to be your 35k limit. you wont be able to touch a mastercraft with a saltwater package for that and you will need to find an 06 20v or older probably in the tige. call Fortes Inboard Connection they are the tige dealer in st. pete and they can help you find what you are looking for and answer any questions you might have.

(Message edited by kko13 on March 08, 2008)

(Message edited by kko13 on March 08, 2008)

(Message edited by kko13 on March 08, 2008)
Old     (kko13)      Join Date: Jul 2006       03-08-2008, 6:17 PM Reply   
oh yeah 4k for salt package on a mastercraft i dont think so more like 14k!

(Message edited by kko13 on March 08, 2008)
Old    dabigkahuna            03-09-2008, 12:07 AM Reply   
Nautiques have a great reputation in Hawaii where everyone runs exclusively in Salt. If 35K is your limit, I would recommend finding an older 210, no fresh water cooling needed, and you'll be just fine as long as you wash and flush properly after every session. All the bells and whistles on the newer "salt water" boats are great if you can afford them, but the good old fashion Nautique is fundamentally solid.
Old     (kko13)      Join Date: Jul 2006       03-09-2008, 7:14 AM Reply   
the weak points on the CC i have worked on are the exhaust and the oil pan. we have some guys that run in salt with CC. both go through exhaust manifolds every couple years and the original oil pans are steal with no real protection on them and will rust through and leak oil. the replacement oil pan from pcm is coated with a thick rubberized coating similar to what tige comes with and should hold up much better. but you should for sure stay away from the indmar engines with the aluminum manifolds i have seen these corrode and have to be replaced in as little as 6 months and Indmar will flat out tell you the motor hits salt you have NO warranty.
Old     (mars)      Join Date: Aug 2005       03-09-2008, 7:34 AM Reply   
Salt and ski boats... plenty of threads on this.
When running in salt maintenance is absolutely critical. There are some basic things you can do that will greatly prolong the life of your craft.
Generally converting a used block to "closed" cooling is not recommended.
BTW: despite what MC might claim, unless they are running automotive air to water cooled radiators (last one I saw did not have this) they are NOT completely closed. There will still be a raw water fed water to water heat exchanger for the boat.
Plenty of people run in brackish and salt without problems as long as their maintenance is diligent.
Mercury uses the same basic mercruiser block and gear in their salt water I/Os as in ski boats.
Ski Boats have varying interpretations of "salt" kits with varying philosophies and cost points.
I'm much more worried about painted trailers in salt evironments-this is where I have seen some pretty significant failures. Make sure the trailer is galvanized or aluminum- disc brakes are preferable.
Saltaway is your friend.
Old     (1boarder_kevin)      Join Date: Mar 2007       03-09-2008, 8:07 AM Reply   

I just bought a 2008 SW X2 and the saltwater package was roughly $4,000 more not 14,000
Old     (greenspirit_hydro)      Join Date: May 2007       03-10-2008, 8:45 AM Reply   
I have an 07 x-star SS and love it. Check out Jim at Bay Area Watersports in Land-o-Lakes. He has some used MC saltwater boats for sales. I got a killer deal on my x-star from him!


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