View Full Version : High End Aluminum Boats

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06-02-2005, 08:05 PM
We have had a number of discussions about high end or custom made welded aluminum boats and most of the time the thread end up as sort of "Ford vs Chevy" discussion. There is a lot more to it than that. I had a recent experience in Alaska where I fished with a guide who had just put $110,000 into a 28' welded aluminum boat (1 week old) that had a lot of design and manufacturing problems. I don't mean to bash a specific manufacturer, but just to point out that it takes a bit of knowledge and boat savvy to get the right boat. Even if the manufacturer has an excellent reputation for making great hulls. It's a matter of buyer beware.

The boat was a Harbercraft Kingfisher with the Pilot house:

The boat had a 225 hp Honda that moved it through 5' seas without a problem. However, when nature called and I asked to use the head, I learned that even manufacturers with great reputations can do stupid things.

The boat had a helm station with throttles and a fish finder located at the right corner outside of the cabin. While I was using the head, I realized that the guide was trying to look around me through the rear window. The manufacturer had positioned the head right in front of the rear helm station! >:( I could have pulled the curtains in the front and rear of the head, but that way the skipper couldn't see where the boat was going! What were they thinking? ;D I wouldn't have taken to much to locate the head on the other side of the cabin.

They also sold him a mechanical anchor winch without a pulpit. We lost a $100 anchor and $100 worth of chain on the trip.

My point is only that if you spend big bucks to get a high end aluminum boat, don't expect the manufacturer to have it all figured out. It's up to you to check out every detail.

06-02-2005, 08:54 PM
Hi Doc,
Was this boat purchased directly from the manufacturer or from a dealer? Either way how could you plunk that much money out and not realize yourself that you need a pulpit? and how could a reputable outfit sell it that way?..or at least they should have told him he needed one. As Ross Perot says, the devil is in the details.


06-02-2005, 08:58 PM
What a mistake! Harbercraft used to be known for building a solid basic tank of a vessel with no frills. I believe they are the ones who bought Jetcraft and moved the plant to B.C.

06-02-2005, 09:42 PM
He just got the boat from Alaska Mining and Diving, which is the only Harbercraft dealer up there. The boat was delivered with out gaskets in the head plumbing as well.

Yes, they bought Jetcraft, which is why I am making this post. This should be of concern for local folks looking into Jetcraft. The Harbercraft hulls are made in the US, but I believe that there are 2 assembly facilities in BC. Seems that there may be to many cooks in the kitchen.

BTW, fishing with this guy was a kick. He wouldn't let us touch the bait or fish for fear that we might get slime inside the cabin. He had a bottle of hand cleaner hung outside the door and would wash the deck down after every fish. He even insisted on rinsing the BOTTOMS of our boots off before we could go into the cabin. ;D

06-03-2005, 06:38 AM
Boy, talk about being anal. ;) He should be running a restaurant instead of a fishing boat.

06-03-2005, 07:10 AM
Since Doc's subject title was High End Aluminum Boats, it is important to not just focus on Harbercraft. In selecting a high end aluminum boat, I saw stupid design in almost every manufacturer I looked at. I liked a lot of the Alumaweld features but there livewell was under a seat. ??? Short of building your own from scratch, all makes seem to have some good characteristics and some bad. If someone could incorporate all the good ones into one boat, then you'd have something. Buying a boat puts so much more responsibility on us, the buyer. The sales people get a nice commission whether the boat works on the water for us or not. From my experience, boat dealerships don't seem to care about repeat business either. YOU have to do homework and make educated choices.

06-03-2005, 07:58 AM
I'm glad you brought that up Hinrid. Every boat is a compromise. I had mine custom built and still had to settle for less deadrise than I thought I wanted (the designer knew more than I did). But the mistake a lot of folks make is to "trust" that by purchasing a high end boat, they are getting what they want.

Aluminum is pretty easy to work with, so you don't have to settle with what you get. You just have to get over the entropy barrier for cutting that first hole or sawing that first opening yourself.

06-03-2005, 08:15 AM
Since Doc's subject title was High End Aluminum Boats, it is important to not just focus on Harbercraft. *In selecting a high end aluminum boat, I saw stupid design in almost every manufacturer I looked at. *I liked a lot of the Alumaweld features but there livewell was under a seat. *??? *Short of building your own from scratch, all makes seem to have some good characteristics and some bad. *If someone could incorporate all the good ones into one boat, then you'd have something. *Buying a boat puts so much more responsibility on us, the buyer. *The sales people get a nice commission whether the boat works on the water for us or not. *From my experience, boat dealerships don't seem to care about repeat business either. *YOU have to do homework and make educated choices.

There is one manufacturer that incorporates all the good features into one boat if you are willing to pay the price. Design Concepts will take any hull you choose and incorporate any feature the buyer wants and if it is doable they will put it in your boat. But like I said the price of your perfect boat is high.

06-03-2005, 08:58 AM
Bass Hole, and it shouldn't be that way. Why should we have to pay more to get it built right? It seems to me, that most experienced fishermen would have a lot of common design preferences. Builders should make that STANDARD. Let's put everything in the wrong place and make them pay more to move it! HELLO!

06-03-2005, 09:20 AM
I tend to think that it's just like cars, the folks who design them don't have to work on them, have you looked under your hood latley? maybe the folks designing the boats don't fish!! and put in them what they think you need.

Just about everyone I've been out with will tell you about the little things wrong in the design of there boat and the folks I fish with aren't engineers, so if we can figure out how it should have been, I would think the guys who went to school for 4-6 years should have no problems. I guess this is not the case.

With what they cost these days they should be bullet proof!!!

06-03-2005, 09:30 AM
sunracer, it would actually be nice if they were more like cars. i think most cars have all the components in basically the same places.

06-03-2005, 10:25 AM
I found that Design Concepts is willing to change the standard plans and make something different per your request. Most boats available in Sacramento are on a lot and no changes can be made. If you want the seat boxes 3" wider or taller because you have a tackle box or porti potti that will not fit they will do that. And the price is not going to be much more than a standard box. I thought the DC was a lot more money too, but not the case for what you get. I found on the changes I wanted to make they were reasonable. If you want a cookie cutter boat off the lot you could save a few bucks. But if you want to sit down and design a boat to hold on to for a few decades then deal with someone who is willing to make changes. It just depends on what you are looking for. There are a lot of nice boats out there, I just wanted some things my way.

06-03-2005, 11:54 AM
That's why I had mine built by Silver Streak in BC. That outfit and Design Concepts were the only ones who would build what I wanted. I decided not to go with DC because of price and also because the boats looked to pretty for fishing. ;D

06-03-2005, 12:01 PM
There is a lot more to it than that. I had a recent experience in Alaska where I fished with a guide who had just put $110,000 into a 28' welded aluminum boat (1 week old)

Problems with the new boat aside, this guy didn't shop very throughfully in the first place. With all the 30 - 35' gill netters that are darn near giving away their boats in Bristol Bay, he could have probably gotten a nice used Almar for $30K...

06-03-2005, 12:06 PM
I went to alot of places to look at boats. I went to DC and my boat would have been $65,000. After the wife picked me up off the floor we looked for months. Just beating on hulls and comparing prices left me far from Jetcraft. They just seemed cheaply built. Rogue Jets seemed to me to have the best hull. Full welds and an extra sheet of aluminum on the back third bottom to make it a 1/2 inch thick. I settled on a used Alumaweld. It was made very well, had low hours and came with about every feature I wanted. I went used because I said some of the new ones were just too pretty. I looked at Boice but they are too racy of a hull. My only advice is to go to Chico DC and look at theirs, then go on a trip to Oregon and look at all the manufacturers there for a tour. Oregon is also a hot place to buy one used. No sales tax so you can bring it back here and pay the tax here. Prices were about 20 percent cheaper. Aluminum jets is just too hot of a market these days. BTW my Alumaweld fish tank is in the bow. The only design flaw I see is they put the pump inlet too high up in the back so I have to stand in the back to get water in to go in it. I will put a hose down a few inches to snorkel it up to cure that. If you want to see an Alumaweld let me know. ;D2Shakes 8)

06-10-2005, 02:41 PM
This is too much...Christmas in June ;D ;D

Is it here yet???????

huh, huh....is it here yet??????

06-10-2005, 03:24 PM
I think with all the time and effort Rusty_Hooks has spent checking out all the dif. manufactures. I would just buy what he buys couldn't go wrong ;)

06-11-2005, 05:15 PM
Thanks for the confidence Steve...but alot of sniffers continue to add more info to the mix, thanks for all the contributions guys....I'll publish the book when I order mine ;D ;D....

I'll tell ya this though....this is not an easy decision!!

Did Mic get his wet yet??

06-11-2005, 09:20 PM
I spent an hour at Sac River Marine this afternoon. All I can say is...I WANT ONE! The little lady fell in love with a 20' Seahawk. I kind of liked it too... ;D 8) I will be researching for some time, but I have to say I sure like what I saw in the NR boats and thought the people were quality; very helpful, not pushy. I think my next trip will be to Chico to see the DC offerings.

06-26-2005, 10:21 PM
I was cruising through threads and saw this one so I thought I'd chip in. I went through the master search for the last year and more intense this late winter / early spring at the boat show circuit for my ultimate boat. I ended up getting a Boulton 19' Sea Skiff and love it a lot. I do mostly lake fishing for trout and Kokanee but am planning to get out for salmon on the nice days. I had to get over the long distance purchase thing (Oregon) as I live in the Bay area. I probably wouldn't have done it except that Mike Boulton makes a high quality boat and has a good reputation that I confirmed among others. This helped ease my concern about buying it a long way from my home. I visited my boat mid-way through contruction to go over placement of a few electronics and other last minute decisions. I got to deal with the owner directly throughout which I really liked as he answered all my questions and was patient from all my questions / spreadsheets / comparisons etc etc. It was nice to customize a few things as well which tends to be a bit easier with smaller manufacturers if you are ordering your boat to be built.

An important thing is if you go with a quality manufacturer is finding a good local service dealer for your motors when they are due for things more than oil changes. Driving out of the bay area for service would be a pain to me when all I really need is a local Yamaha dealer to complete the service. You would think we would see some Bay area Aluminum boat vendors given the opportunity for them.

Not sure if this helps but it's my .02. I also used the expertise and opinions of other owners from this forums and others from all manufacturers to help formulate a final decision.

06-27-2005, 05:35 AM
Those Boultons are beautiful boats and I looked at them also but couldnt get over the distance thing.Anyways im sure your happy with yours and how about posting us a picture!!!

06-28-2005, 06:23 PM
But what about lo-end aluminum Jet boats? My folks have a 16' G3 hull and a 40 hp Yamaha 4-stroke with a jet drive for running the rivers, and having driven some other boats, I wouldn't trade it for anything in the Bush... Draws all of 2" on plane, turns on a dime and I don't think you could flip it if you tried, no console, which gets old on long trips, but after driving a console boat, I'd rather have the tiller in tight spots- the stearing gear takes too long to respond on a console, outboard means at the worst you have a replacement motor shipped in (always take your trips upriver...), if you clog the grate, you can just pull out the blockage, or, if you pack the jet with sand somehow, you can just tilt up and unclog the impeller after taking off the grate. Only one bench, so you can literally drive your ATV into it if you need to... Small "dry" cubby under the closed bow, and built like a tank. You could probably drop the thing 20' onto solid ground without too much damage.

The only thing I would change is swapping the motor out for a 50 hp. It doesn't handle large payloads well, and struggles to get on plane if you load it down with 4 people + gear and gas for along trip.

That said, it's what you need to do that counts the most. If you need to run tight little rivers with tons of sweepers and lots of shallow riffles, then you'd be dead with anything with a cabin or an inboard. If you need to be comfortable, then you need to go hi-end...

07-02-2005, 01:56 PM
For those who are interested in Design Concepts they have a guide to buying the right boat. I'm not sure how good it is as I'm waiting for mine. You can get it by calling them at 1-800-722-2645. This is just information, I am not endorsing anything nor do I work for them in any way.
I'm still about a year out from my purchase but the process is beginning! ;D

07-05-2005, 08:50 PM
I'm going to churp in here for a sec. I just recieved my Design Concepts boat. (June 26)They are a great boat! I love it! They try to think of everything.If you want something added they will.Anyway you want.The price I paid for mine was alot less than the same comproble North River.I was able to go in to the factory and watch my boat built from a sheet of Alum. to finish.Dave and all the guys at DC are great!If you see something during the building that you want added or changed they will.Their cost wasn't out of hand at all.You get more bang for your buck.When you really get down to picking a boat like I did,I research the heck out of every boat even went to Oregon! DC has the best boat for what you'll be paying for.NorthRiver is a fine boat don't get me wrong.It was either that or Fishrite I really liked them!But for the money and personal care I chose Design Consepts. Brettski

07-07-2005, 07:19 PM
Brettski,Well i sure hope you enjoy your boat as much as I am enjoying mine.Design Concepts are awesome boats as all the others you mentioned.This is like the ford chevy debate.Everyone has what they think is the best for the money.Heck the boats aint expensive its the motor and all the goodies that cost the money.You were sold just like the rest of us on something that caught your eye or ear.Sac river Marine has done me right and Im sure the guys at Dc will do you right.Congrats on your new ride.Mine already stinks like fish and has blood stains everywhere.

07-09-2005, 02:45 PM
You are so right.Your boat will be just fine!I'm two for two in my boat both times out I got a keeper sturgeon.Blood all over. Brettski

07-10-2005, 08:12 AM
I'm glad to see this thread bumped up now and then.

Mo, this isn't as much of a debate as it's an information exchange. There are alot of well built boats out there and great service behind them. I don't think there is one manufacturer that could handle all of the traffic so theres got to be more than one. Local seems to dominate and for good reason, but price does enter the picture...in a big way.

I'm glad to hear about all those bloody boats out there ;D ;D

07-21-2005, 04:34 PM
:-/ I've been reading these posts and have found them very interesting. I'm in the market for a new aluminum boat in the 20' to 22' range.(as 2 boats are'nt enough) I fish out the gate,in the delta,and alot of kokes and trout. I want a deep vee with an outboard. I am interested if anyone has anything good or bad to say about Hewes Craft boats. I looked at a 20' and 22' Searunner, that they make, the other day in Escalon and the looked like well built boats. Although I looked pretty quick since i had just come from Don Pedro and had two limits of nice kokes on ice.It was 106 when we got off the water so you could understand why I didnt feel like talking to a salesman. I talked to a sales rep today on the phone from boat country ,in Escalon, and he was very helpful and not at all pushy. I was surprised they seemed to be priced very reasnable.I plan to check out DC and some others but I was wondering if any members had any experience with Hews Craft. Any info will be greatly appriciated. ps: The 23' silver streak soft top cuddy is a good looking boat,I just don'nt know what would be involved in buying a boat in BC and bringing it to cal. THanks for the help to a new subscriber.

07-21-2005, 06:13 PM
I own a SilverStreak and they have all sorts of ways worked out for delivery in the US (so that you can avoid paying GST and PST). Basically, you can pick the boat up and take the ferry back, they can deliver the boat and trailer to you at Pt. Roberts (US territory on the Canadian side of the border), or you can bring a trailer to Port Angeles and they (or you) can run the boat across the straights. With the Canadian dollar as high as it is, SilverStreaks aren't the deal that they used to be. But they are extremely well made boats and they will customize them even more than the US builders.

BTW, you will save a bunch on Japanese outboards in Canada. The downside is that they won't honor the warranties in the US, so you have to take them back across the border if you have a problem.

07-21-2005, 06:47 PM

07-21-2005, 09:49 PM
Thanks for the quick replies. drstesser what model and size silver streak do you have? With the price of boats these days I don't want to do this too many more times,maybe just a few.Thanks again.

07-21-2005, 11:06 PM
I have the 17' runabout that looks like this one from their website except that mine has green trim and Honda engines:


When I went to their site to grab the picture I noticed that they now have dealers in WA and AK. I don't know what their prices are like now, but I paid ~$25K US for boat, engines, trailer, and electronics in 1997.

SilverStreaks are not as fancy looking as some of the US boats, but they are built like tanks and are engineered down to the last functional detail. Even the small ones are designed for ocean use. I first learned about them in AK where the guides couldn't say enough good things about them.

07-21-2005, 11:21 PM
Nice looking boat doc.WA is not that bad of a drive when you think of the money im going to spend,I'll give them a call and maybe take a ride to look at them.Thanks again doc.

07-22-2005, 06:15 AM
For a 20 to 22 ft aluminum boat here with motor and trailer you are looking at 28 to 36 k plus electronics.Thats for Nr,alumaweld,Boulton,DC and other similar boats.I just got mine 2 months ago and had all of the above boats on my short list in the months I was shopping.There are a couple others brands with dealers near like Jetcraft,Custom weld,weldcraft,hewescraft,and duckworth and i think your still in that price range for a 20 to 22 ft deep vee.

07-22-2005, 06:23 AM
If you plan on using your boat much and have a 40 hour a week job I would strongly suggest buying from a local dealer.The boat will need service and or warranty work and I cant imagine taking vacation time to get my boat fixed.All of the above mentioned boats are good boats but a local dealer is worth its weight in gold when you have a problem.

07-22-2005, 07:19 AM
If they are built right in the first place with low maintenance designed in, you never should have to bring them back to a dealer. All I've done to mine over the last 7 years is to rinse it off. You can get engine service anywhere if necessary.

07-22-2005, 07:26 AM
Two questions:

1) Why does everyone want their boat built like a tank? Real curious about guys that use their boat like a tank.

2) Why do prospective boat buyers make a big deal about dealer distance? Other than initial fine tuning, all warranty work has been handled at a local repair shop, not the dealer, which BTW is also local, but won't ever go back.

07-22-2005, 08:43 AM
Pretty common questions. If you purchase a boat and want any custom work done after delivery, every Mfg. has different specs for rails and such so if you were going to have a swim step Mfg.'d and your local shop sold Duckworth you would find that his fab guys were not set up to do your rail size unless you had a Duckworth. That pretty much happens thoughout the boat, be it custom wiring, electronics, tanks, lightts, riggers and such. As to why you would want something better built than standard. Everything in life has a certain life expectancy. The better built any thing is the longer it lasts with less maintenance costs. Also in big or shallow water you can find things that will happen to you very quickly. A thicker bottom or a taller deadrise or better bilge pumps could some day save your life. Hey and then there is always bragging rights! ;D 8) ;)

07-22-2005, 08:49 AM
Why does everyone want their boat built like a tank? Real curious about guys that use their boat like a tank.

1) Pacific Ocean
2) Pyramid Lake
3) Lake Tahoe

There must be more reasons, but these are enough. ;D

07-22-2005, 08:52 AM
That's what I meant to say! 8) ;D

07-22-2005, 08:55 AM
I guess one reason some fisherman want their boats built like a tank is the better its built the less things go wrong with them and that translates to more fishing time and less down time and money out of your pocket.I know from experience,I would rather pay more up front for a boat that is built well than get a marginal boat and cost me time and money down the road. And as we all know the money figure keeps getting bigger and bigger but it's the time that is getting more and more valuable to use all.You can always make more money but no one that I know has figured out how to get back lost time.

07-22-2005, 09:09 AM
Amen doc, if you have ever been on any of those places when the weather picks up you will understand what a well built boat means.And then when you have people on board you are responsible for it's really nice to be in a boat you can trust.I don't know about you doc but some of my best days on prymid,and out the gate have been whenother boats are leaving the water.It's a nice felling to have a boat you can trust.Heck I'll add the delta to that list. ;D

07-22-2005, 09:19 AM
I don't want to start a war but I would like to get some opinions on a 22' NORTH RIVER SEA HAWK vs a 22'HEWSECRAFT SEARUNNER . I haven't seen a NR yet but I plan to next week.Just looking for something, maybe a little detail I mite miss.SO many choices so little time. 8)

07-22-2005, 10:08 AM
1) Pacific Ocean
2) Pyramid Lake
3) Lake Tahoe

There must be more reasons, but these are enough. ;D

Doc, maybe I'm naive but I'd like to see the $30k to $50k boat that won't stay in one piece in those places, jets excluded.

07-22-2005, 10:20 AM
It happens all the time. Most good welded aluminum boats are pretty rugged. But the devil is in the detail. Pumps, fittings, and welds do fail. So it is up to the buyer to make sure that only top quality components and build procedures are used. You can't do much about the welding process. It all depends on the skill of the guys in the shop. So it comes down to who you trust. I've seen some pretty questionable welding on high end aluminum boats. I won't name the brands because I've seen nice welding jobs on the same brands. When they leak, it is usually because of cracks that form adjacent to the welds because the guy let the metal get too hot.

If you want a good picture of the brands that hold up, go to Alaska where local service is rarely an issue. There is a particular brand up there that is known as the "Alumaleak". I think the manufacturing process has been straightened out now.

Vance Staplin
07-22-2005, 10:20 PM
Hi Guys,

I have been sitting here reading these posts. *Some of this stuff is absolutly Ford vs Chevy. *

I do know that since I purchased my new boat this year my life has drastically changed. *As most of you know I have been heavily involved in fishing for trout and Kokanee. *I have guided since 1987 in the lakes and rivers. *

We are spoiled out here in the west with the delta and ocean being so close. *I grew up fishing the coast but until recently had a boat that would knock your fillings out in heavy water. *Therefore my trips out in the ocean were limited to a couple of times a season.

This year I purchased a 22 foot Heavy Aluminum(didn't feel I should mention the brand). *For our region it has opened up a whole new world. *I can easily pull this boat up to Stampede lake and fish for kok's. *Heck for that matter I can easily pull it into Hell Hole and fish for Kok's and Brown's one weekend, then the following weekend pull it down to Half Moon Bay and go out for Tuna. *

We have a world of opportunity living out here in the west and a good heavy aluminum boat opens up a whole new world of opportunity.

I think Mickey is a good example. *He too bought a new boat this year. *Reading these boards I have seen that he has fished Tahoe, Hell Hole, and we saw a nice picture of him with a 30 pound king out of Bodega.

Now I just look at the weather forcast to determine if I'm fishing the coast for Halibut Rockfish or Salmon, or the valley and mountain lakes for Kokanee and Trout.

My .02 cents


07-22-2005, 11:03 PM
I went looking at boats today (felt like I was "cheating" on the old boat :-/) and have allready decided to go heavy this time.

Now I just look at the weather forcast to determine if I'm fishing the coast for Halibut Rockfish or Salmon, or the valley and mountain lakes for Kokanee and Trout.

That pretty much sums up what I want out of my next boat. I have plenty of time to look and alot of resources here on this board. It will be at least a year, maybe 2, but the next boat is going to be a good one :D

07-23-2005, 06:51 AM
I respectfully disagree with you who think a dealer wont be needed if a boat is built right.My boat is my 7th boat,I have owned 3 harleys,a custom chopper,an indian motorcycle,I have a dodge diesel pickup,i have a class a motorhome and too many other things to list.All of the above vehicles are quality products that have had issues taken care of by a dealer.To say that they were not built right is ridiculous.Machines with moving parts,electronics etc break!!Now i am a journeyman diesel mechanic and am perfectly capable of handling most troubleshooting and or servicing on all of the above vehicles,but ?hit happens.Float switches brake,electronics go out,enines have quirks,accesories have defects etc..Now I am sure there is a yamaha dealer near,a raymarine dealer is somewhere etc.But My dealer will handle everything,they know me,I can call and get in quickly even during peak season and not miss any weekends fishing etc..a human puts all these boats together and can make a mistake also.At work i have an excellent rapport with the service and parts guys at the peterbilt dealer and I know it helps to get my parts faster, warranties done quicker etc.We buy the trucks there,parts,and warranty work(which do happen)all at the same place.When I need tech advice,a job done on short notice it can only help to be a good customer and know everyone at the dealer.My 2 cents(no offense intended)

07-23-2005, 11:20 AM
Mo, it sounds like you are selling relationships. I believe everything said and strive for those same relationships at the location I get my boat serviced. Why are you thinking that a dealer is the only one capable of such service?

07-24-2005, 09:54 PM
Exactly. I've owned 7 boats over the years and never had any of them back to the original dealer. You can get faster service on electronics if you seen them back to the factory for warrantee work yourself. You can get motors serviced anywhere if you don't want to work on them yourself. And I've never had anything break on a boat while it was under warrantee. The most I've ever had a dealer do was to tighten a few things up after the shakedown run.

Well made boats are (or should be) pretty bullet proof. Engines and electronics are another story. But you can usually find better service for these components at places other than a new boat dealer.

07-25-2005, 01:14 PM
This is for all of us that constantly complain about price ;D


It's a high speed logistical ship of the US ARMY

Radio center, supplies men and machinery for a rapid deployment.....All aluminum....

I think "high end" too :-/ ;D :o

07-25-2005, 01:19 PM
Now I'd like to see the trolling plate for that one. You will also need a longer handle for the net, on that fish deck. ;D

07-25-2005, 01:55 PM
And a tiller extension...so you can stay on top of the downriggers ;D ;D

BTW....the plate right next to the "T" is the one I paid for last year....does that make it "mine"?

07-26-2005, 10:42 PM
MoMoney, you stress the importance of a relationship with you local dealer, but, what if your local area (100 miles) doesn't offer the boats you are interested in? I've recently switched gears from researching glass center consoles (great for single operator to fight larger species all around boat without obstruction) to looking at welded aluminum. I'm in the same area as Rusty Hooks, and from what I've found, I have a choice of Jetcraft, Customweld, Princecraft (riveted), or Klamath (also riveted). So, with the exception of Jetcraft, I will have to depend on someone other than the original dealer for service.
I'm curious ??? it seems that everyone is concerned with getting their boat fully outfitted prior to purchase. Taking from my experience with motorcycle community, my friends have purchased their bikes with everything pre-installed by the dealer with a price tag much higher than what I have invested in my ride which is far more "complete" than theirs. Am I wrong? Has the "do-it-yourself" approach any advantage in boat set-up? For someone who has the tools and abilities to weld their own transducer bracket instead of drilling through the hull or can bend and form their own stainless rails, aluminum boxes,shelves and brackets, or snake your own wiring, is there anyone who offers a basic hull/motor/trailer package (preferably without the gaudy paint and decals)?
My own needs are for the bay/delta, smaller local lakes, and the bigger lakes mentioned previously by Doc. I'm considering something in the 17.5 to 18.5 range (possibly 16.5 if the hull is right). Any suggestions on V-angle, deadrise, Transome height, HP, etc. would be appreciated.

07-28-2005, 06:02 PM
MankinD If you like the glass center console with the advantage of manuverbility look at Design Concepts mid engine You can fight the fish all around the boat without the eng.cover to deal with.

07-28-2005, 06:38 PM
Thanks JBG, I'll check into that one.


07-31-2005, 07:44 AM
Isnt America great.We can sit here and argue till we are blue in the face and none of us will face the firing squad!!!I love it!!!

07-31-2005, 03:57 PM
Hey MM, by the description of that beautiful ride of yours, I can see where you came up with the call name cause that's definately "mo-money" than I can spend on a new ride. Maybe someday ;)

Crunchin the numbers,

07-31-2005, 10:00 PM
Doug, if you're trying not to break the bank, consider the Alumaweld Stryker models. They are not high end, but I think they are a good value. Not built like tanks, but they are very serviceable and fish well. You can get them close to stripped and put anything you want on yourself.

08-01-2005, 07:25 AM

I thought Klamath boats had welded hulls, or at least the older ones did. Did they switch to riveted hulls?

08-01-2005, 07:32 AM
They're welded ;)

08-01-2005, 09:38 PM
Thanks Doc, looking for Alumaweld dealers in the area, gonna take a look. My mistake on the Klamath, had not been by North Bay Motorsports to see them yet and confused a neighbors riveted boat which I thought was a Klamath, it wasn't. I believe they are built in Vallejo now (on Mare Island), might take a ride to the factory to see what's up. Still waiting to see that comprehensive buyers guide Rusty Hooks is working on!!


08-01-2005, 09:43 PM
Anybody want to bet that Rusty NEVER gets a boat? ;) ;D ;D

He's very much into shopping. ;D

08-01-2005, 09:46 PM
Just an interesting side to the search for a new boat. Take a look at the inside cover of the Harbercraft/Jetcraft brochure for 2005, a beautifuly restored example of their first all welded runabout from 1959! :D Love to find one of those. I'd fish from that head turner!


08-02-2005, 10:40 AM
Hi guys, just like anything, everyone has their favorite boat brand. I have an '01 Jetcraft inboard jet....the original Jetcraft. It's a great boat overall-heavy alum. welded boat, but it's completely different than the Jetcraft models today. They now have what is called the "preflex hull." One of its advertised advantages is that it's stronger and therefore needs less structural crossmembers etc. This still has yet to be proven. Most all of the other heavy guage welded boat makers still use the old style of construction and design ie North River. The new Jetcrafts are really Harborcraft boats, but using the Jetcraft name as a selling point. Don't get me wrong, Harborcraft boats are great boats, too. To get to my point, always do your research before buying a boat. THEY ARE A LOT OF MONEY! The owner of the old Jetcraft sold out to Harborcraft and now has started a new company called Rogue Jets. Guess what kind of warranty I have now??!!

08-04-2005, 02:52 PM
Those Rogue jets are really nice. Did you get to see the cutaway display model at Calexpo in the spring? He adds an extra plate of aluminum on the back third bottom. I was going to buy the one on display but someone else bought it that day. Nice boats. You know another boat I got pricing on was Willie boats. I have only saw a couple passing on the river but when I got their pricing in the mail it seemed like a really good price compared to all others. I dont know about construction or anything on them. Does anyone have a Willie boat out there????
2Shakes ;D ;D 8)

08-05-2005, 10:07 AM
HI all..Thought I would chime in here. I just got a 22' RogueJet like 2Shakes was talking about and I must say it is AWESOME. I looked at jet boats for the last 5 years or so with great attention to detail and visited some of the factories they are built in, saw the construction features of many and ended up deciding on RogueJet. I really liked the Design Concepts and I have seen many Willie boats from when I lived in Oregon, but after all was said and done, the RogueJet seemed like the best decision. :P :P ;D ;DI am extremely pleased with the results of my long shopping adventure, and I hope to see you all on the river(s) soon!!!

08-09-2005, 08:37 PM
Shop til I drop.......Doc ;) ;D ;D

"we're going to get this right, for the last time"!!

08-16-2005, 09:21 PM
Rusty, When we visited your iris farm around Easter, you told us you were looking for a boat and that you were going to Pyramidfest this year. Are you still going to Pyramidfest? Are you going to fish out of your new boat?.. Larry

08-17-2005, 03:17 PM
Yes indeedy I will be there!! ;)

No, I won't have a boat there.....still hitch hiking :(

Two...many kids in college and we just got the books bill for this quarter :P

Soon enough...and I've pretty much got the thing dialed in now.....although I just saw an almar runabout today ;D ;D

By the time it gets to my place it'll look like a hermit crab with all the stuff stuck to it ;) ;D ;D

08-17-2005, 10:05 PM
has anyone had any experiance with the yamaha 40 jet outboard or the North River Boats? I am looking at their 17.5 foot with that engine. I would be greatfull for any feed back.

08-17-2005, 10:40 PM
I've had no experience with that particular combination, but I can say with confidence that the rig would be very under powered.

08-19-2005, 08:55 AM
Tom, is that the hp rating of the engine at the powerhead or the jet? Sometimes outboards that come from the manufacturer with the jet foot installed are rated at the foot rather than the powerhead.

08-19-2005, 10:11 PM
It is a 60hp head rated at 40 with the jet. On a test run it seemed adequately powered although I will probibly go with something with more hp. I'm still shopping so any suggestions appreciated.

08-22-2005, 08:31 AM
Most between 17' and 21' end up with a min of 90hp and an upper of 150hp...some of the 20+ end up in the 150-200...(225)for hot rodders

Consumption is real close but when your looking at a new one, go with as much hp as you can.

Fill the boat up with gear, people, gas,dogs, bait, fish, more gear...you get the picture... :P....FOOD, coolers, etc.

You want the weight/planeing to calc at your max anticipated load...rather than how nicely it performs with you, the salesman and a little gas.

08-22-2005, 08:59 AM
I would add to Rusty's comments, "as much hp" should be tempered with the weight of that hp. If a 175 hp or 200 hp weighs a couple hundred pounds more than the 150, you might not want to be hauling that extra weight up and down the highway.

08-22-2005, 11:47 AM
Thanks for the info on needed HP. In looking for a boat at the dealers any thing they add is at full retail. Have you found that they negotiate price the same as or similar to when you buy a car?

08-22-2005, 11:55 AM
My experience is was that there is NO negotiations unless you are getting a boat they want to unload. They are a little motivated right now trying to get rid of the last 05's to make room for the new 06's.

08-22-2005, 12:12 PM
If it's a North River just tell them your headed up to Eureka this weekend ;D ;D

Nothing against the dealer...just part of the dance ;)

Some real nice NR boats on the lot just off 4th and broadway :o

Hindrid....if it's just a couple hundred pounds...throw some
beer out ;D ;D

08-23-2005, 11:23 AM
I wish they would quit making better boats, how's a guy supposed to ever be happy with the one he's got? ::) ::) ???

08-23-2005, 12:04 PM
I wish they would quit making better boats, how's a guy supposed to ever be happy with the one he's got? ::) ::) ???

Fish More ::) ::) ;D ;)

08-25-2005, 02:36 PM
Hey, my thought was to buy the biggest one I could afford. That way, at least I could recycle it no matter what! :o However, the thing I hate most is that there is about a $30,000 dollar california redemption value they seem to add to the price. :'(
Mine still has a bud light label stuck on the bottom.
2Shakes ;D ;D 8) Lets go fishin

08-25-2005, 10:01 PM
Have a 14' alum at the moment. My family fishes with me 75%of the time, wife & 2 young uns. Gonna be lookin for more boat,lol! No ocean stuff, just started shopping, will check out all the boats mentioed in previous posts. What about Crestliner-18 to 20 '? expensive, lite? No one mentioned them, must be a good reason 8)'. Not in a great rush, but dont want to make an expensive mistake ). Thanks so much

08-26-2005, 08:45 AM
FTK, as it applies to this thread, High End Aluminum Boats, Crestliner would not be considered in this class. There are dozens of aluminum boat manufactures and 100's of good serviceable aluminum boats. I'm sure Crestliner is a good serviceable boat, just not in the elite class where you have to get a second on the house or take the 20 year financing package to be able to afford the payments. ;)

08-26-2005, 03:05 PM
Crestliner does make a few varieties that fall into the "mortgage" range....

Rivetted, super duper upholstery, padded corners...

really fancy dancy..... 8) ::)

If your looking for an 18-20 foot aluminum with an open bow and welded seams...expect to get out your wallet.....

and your wifes wallet...too ;D ;D ;)


they trailer great and they don't wear out....and you'll have a really hard time parting with it...

just ask...there are a pile of them here!!

08-26-2005, 03:55 PM
All of the newer Crestliners I have seen had welded hulls. But they use a lighter gauge aluminum for the floor and sides than the so called high end boats. They are also very beamy for their length and are sort of a fishing/ski boat hybrids. None of there models are what I would call dedicated fishing machines except in the bass boat sense.

But I'm sure that Crestliners would hold up just fine for typical lake use. Whatever boat you get, you end up loving. They have personalities just like women. ;D

Come to think of it though, I once had a welded stainless steel boat that was too heavy and had too wide of a beam. I think I'll back off on that analogy. ;)

08-26-2005, 05:17 PM
I do not understand getting the most hp you can on a fishing boat, one if you fish rough water you are unable to use all that hp and are usually not moving over 20- 30 mph on a good day. also why do you want a motor that requires more fuel consumption with high gas prices? and last most fishing boats are not built for speed, If your not fishing bass tournaments save your money buy a motor that gets you the best fuel economy and gets you there safely..

08-26-2005, 08:14 PM
There are times when you have so much weight in the boat that you would have a difficult time getting the boat to plane out without the HP.

There are times where you must go some distance to the fishing location...I would rather fish than ride a boat for hours to get there.

You will get better gas mileage..true

but with the reserves there waiting it leaves alot more options open...

And besides...when your on the river and you get too close to the falls you need the HP to pull your silly butt away from that dangerous situation!! ;D ;D ::) ;)

just a little west coast humor!!...

that IS what you tell your wife when you spend all that money for all that HP. ;D

08-26-2005, 09:50 PM
thanks for the input everyone, great thread. Guess my problem isnt which boat, but what my largest use category would be for the boat. I had the cart befor the horse, lol ! Maybe I'll consider a used boat until our fishing direction becomes more clear! 8)'

08-27-2005, 09:54 AM
You have to be careful about blanket statements such as "get as much hp as you can". I've been in hundreds of different boats over the years and a few have been over powered. This is just as bad or worse than under powering.

One particular boat comes to mind. A few years ago my wife and I got a chance to work on a research project in SE Alaska. The few towns up that way have distinct boating cultures. Since much of the water is protected (in an Alaskan sense) from the ocean winds and swells, everybody runs around in small boats that are universally called skiffs. The folks in Petersburg mostly all use sensibly powered boats that run from 14 to 20 ft. But most of the people from Wrangell (which is a longer way from anywhere else)all seem to have ridiculously over powered skiffs. One of our research skiffs was a "Wrangell boat". It was a 17' aluminum fishing boat with a 150 hp Yamaha engine. The boat was downright dangerous in any kind of rough water. We could not plane the boat unless the water was just about flat. And when "slogging" off plane, we would take water over the stern. So all of that power was pretty useless.

Most, but not all, dealers know how to properly power their boats. The increased weight of 4-stoke OBs have caused some confusion, however. Manufactures used to rate hulls by the Coast Guard system of combined max weight of the engines, passengers, and gear. But it is becoming clear that maximum engine weight is an important factor by itself.

My rule of thumb for outboard powered fishing boats is to pick an engine and prop combination that will allow the boat to plane easily in a chop at about 4,000 rpm with the heaviest typical load on aboard. Much more power than that is a waste of money.

08-27-2005, 04:15 PM
My rule of thumb when I was shopping was to .....ask Doc.

;) ;)


09-01-2005, 03:46 PM
That's funny TS, that's how I did it too ;D ;D ;D

Vance Staplin
09-01-2005, 08:25 PM
Hey Terry,

Did you get that new boat all fishy smelling yet?


09-01-2005, 08:43 PM

Still trying. Seem to be not enough time to get those motors broke in. Dang work anyway. But next week for sure. Donner, Stampede, and hopefully Jackson Meadows here I come!


09-02-2005, 08:47 AM
That's funny TS, that's how I did it too ;D ;D ;D

Ditto....There seems to be alot of that going on ;D ;)

10-06-2005, 07:52 PM
Did I just F-ing read 8 pages of rant and not come across one reference to LUND?

Their rivoted! just like an airplane.....

10-08-2005, 09:03 AM
I'm not trying to be a smart a$$ but I don't think Lund is necessarily regarded as a high end aluminum boat :-/.

10-12-2005, 06:16 AM
If planes went in water they would be welded. :o Boats that are riveted either leak or will leak. The good doc didnt have enough room to put in Custom Made High End Heavy Aluminum Welded Boats. ;) No offense to Lund owners but I wouldnt trade my Westcoaster for one. My brother has a Valco its the riveted version of the Westcoaster. I think my boat carries something like a 25 year guarranty against leaks. My bro just finally got done sealing his Valco all up from leaks. Just my 2 cents.
2Shakes ;D ;D 8)

10-12-2005, 03:08 PM
I would have to agree that, while boats like Tracker and Lund are nice aluminum boats, they are not considered "High End".

Maybe that's what I should do... Start a thread entitled "Better than average aluminum boats". ;D

10-12-2005, 07:37 PM
;D ;D ;DHigh End!!!! It's all relative. You can't buy even a Tracker bass boat for under 15K. That my friends is High End to me. A new namebrand bassboat, 45k and up. High End is relative. A top end Lund will cost you near 40k with all the bells and whistles. Remember when a High End boat was 12k? Oh for the good ole days. By the way I'm looking for a low end used aluminum bass boat, side console, vee hull, 50HP or better. Just my 2 censt,
Paul aka Survivor ::) ::)

10-18-2005, 06:02 PM
I disagree, respectively. High end is a relative term, what I really want to know is are you all thinking that the thicker the aluminum the more high end the boat it is?

Wrong. There are nice river runners out there, don't get me wrong, but their are just as many lower end "thicker manufaturers as their are in you references above.

Yes we all remember every piece of crap alum boat we got in a as a kid leaked....I'm talking today's NEW market.

Lund has a LIFETIME gaurentee on the hull.

10-24-2005, 11:54 AM
Yep, I agree with Cheesehead. High end is the wrong word. Thick hulled aluminum boats are just one type of aluminum hull.. great for rivers and occasional brushes with rocks.. good for trolling lakes and some ocean fishing. Definitely a multi-species fishing boat.

What about a Lund? It's also a great multi-species boat. Good for lakes, bays, rivers and some ocean fishing. It's not a boat to run through a shallow rocky river. It's a greaf fishing platform for bass, trout, salmon etc. Has more built in lockable storage than the typical thick-hulled welded boats. Mine has an easily accessible, lockable rod locker that holds 8 long rods. Has 10 storage compartments, 2 livewells and 2 other live-bait wells. Has a fishable front deck with a pedestal seat.

When talking about a Lund or a thick hulled welded boat, it doesn't make sense to say one is more high end than the other. The best boat for anyone depends on what you're fishing for and what boat best meets your needs. Lunds are expensive and are certainly considered "high end" by the tournament fisherman on the Great Lakes. These guys need a reliable, durable boat to handle the big water the Great Lakes throw at them. The guides who fish and run the rivers out west need a reliable, durable boat to handle the rocks and rapids. A thick, welded hull is a great solution. A river guide wouldn't use a Lund and a Great Lakes tournament fisherman wouldn't use a river boat.. Larry

10-24-2005, 12:10 PM
The term, high end, is one that is earned by owners and peers. I was recently part of a round table discussion about aluminum boats. The leader of the group, a major marketing group, asked what the group thought were the elite or high end boat manufactures. Lund was not on that list nor was Crestliner or a few other WELL MADE aluminum boats. High end in one's own mind may not be the same as the masses but realistically, high end is what the majority considers to be "high end".

11-18-2005, 05:55 PM
I have a 2005 Duckworth with a Yamaha 150 and T8 kicker. The boat has served me well in the bay, marin coastline and a bunch of lakes. I think all the higher end boats that I have seen at the Pyramid ramp look good. That ramp is a better place than a boat show to look at aluminum boats. Now the next step up from high end would be really high end. Aluminum Chambered Boats in Washington have some pretty impressive boats on their site. The 23'sport fisherman limited is my current dream boat although I only know what I see on the website. Nice site. www.acbboats.com
Looking at boats online is like looking at the Monkey Wards catalog when I was a kid.

12-04-2005, 07:20 PM
hey mickey what size is your boat and what size motor. How much does it cost for a day of trolling with your big motor.

12-05-2005, 06:24 AM
jpayne, its a 20' North River Sea Hawk, has a 150hp Yamaha 8hp Yamaha kicker. The big motor does pretty good on gas if you aren't slamming it all day, I troll with the kicker, it will get me up to about 5-6mph, and I could troll forever with that one and it doesn't burn hardly any gas ;D

12-05-2005, 06:48 AM
Mickeys dyslexic...... those are Yamaha motors not Yahama's. Or Yaha Mama's or.........? ;D ;D ;D
And he has trouble reaching the keyboard. ;D

12-05-2005, 09:50 AM
would the 12 degree deadrise on the 18 foot north river seahawk gonna handle pyramid chop well? I noticed that it goes to 14 degrees on the 20ft

12-06-2005, 10:07 AM
does anyone have any info on the design concepts delta angler 18. They are the same price as the norhtriver seahawk 18 about 26500 with a 115hp outboard

12-06-2005, 10:52 AM
jp, are you looking at a jet? 12-14 degree is pretty flat for big water. A deep V would be considered 16 to 20 in the rear tapering to 28 - 32 in the nose.

12-06-2005, 11:52 AM
outboard. The seahawk 18 has a 12 deadrise and according to doc handle rough pyramid water very well. I think these are the exception though due to their shape

Vance Staplin
12-06-2005, 09:29 PM
Hi Guy’s,

I want to clarify the “variable” degree bottom on the North River Boats 18 foot Seahawk.

Their bottom starts out at 12 degrees at the transom for stability at anchor and at trolling speeds, and then it quickly progresses to 28 degrees at the bow for cutting heavy chop and swells.

Hope this helps


12-09-2005, 09:51 PM
what are the advantages to getting a transom extension for your outboard

12-09-2005, 11:49 PM
Boat rides like a longer boat.. in otherwords more smoothly. Putting the motors behind the boat gives you a little more usable space back around the transom. It also makes it a little harder to net a fish back off the transom so you'll have to play the fish over to the side before netting it.. Larry

12-10-2005, 12:10 AM
A bracket actually gives you a lot more usable space across the transom.

It also:

1) Reduces the engine noise level since the transom blocks some of the sound.

2) Lets you launch your boat into waves that would swamp an open transom boat.

3) Provides protection when you back down into a following sea.

4) Allows the engine to be mounted higher, which can result in higher top speed and a little better fuel economy.

But the main advantage is that it makes the boat handle like the hull was 2-3 ft longer as Larry said.

12-12-2005, 12:49 PM
I have the NR 18' Seahawk with offshore mounting with a 115 merc. I've had in very rough water on the sac/delta and it handled like you were on smooth water. Wouldn't trade for any other boat its size.

12-12-2005, 02:53 PM
what dealer did you buy your northriver from

12-13-2005, 10:37 AM
I have a 20 fott NR trapper and it handles Pyramid water great. The boat will handle rougher water then I will.

12-14-2005, 07:15 AM
what dealer did you buy your northriver *from

I purchased my NR from Sac Marine, very good people to work with.

12-14-2005, 10:38 AM
I agree with Doc Stressors points about the benefits of the offshore bracket. I have measured the distance from a standard transom to the farthest point on the motor and compared it to the same on a boat with the offshore and found the measurements to be almost identical. I think the only advantage of a standard transom mount is the overall shorter length.

Vance Staplin
12-14-2005, 03:14 PM
Hi guys,

I went from a motor well transom mount boat to an Off Shore bracketed boat. I did the same thing, I measured the boat and found about a four inch difference. Now that I have a bracketed boat I will never go back to a transom mount.

I feel the only advantage to a transom mount boat is the ability to get a shorter boat because of storage purposes. I have a lot of customers come in with tape measures trying to fit a 20 foot boat in a 25 foot garage.


12-14-2005, 03:42 PM
Okay, you guys have lost me on the bracket conversation. The length of a 20' boat is still 20', not 20' plus the length of the bracket, or am I misunderstanding what you're saying? The depth of the bracket platform and a standard transom is pretty close. What cost me interior space was the rear deck cutting area. Bow to motor measurements for a transom mount and bracket mount should be almost the same.

12-14-2005, 03:54 PM
Mine measures 20' from the tip to the back of the boat, the bracket is extra, and mine's listed at 20'

Vance Staplin
12-14-2005, 04:38 PM
As Mickey said the 20 Seahawk Hull is 20 ft long. *The motors are then mounted on the Offshore bracket back an additional 30 inches.

All of the advantages Doc listed earlier in this thread about the bracketed boats are true. *In the simplest of terms, a 20 foot bracketed boat for example has the room and handles about like a 22 foot transom motor mounted boat. *Plus the high transom will not allow swells to come in over the rear and splash into the boat. *

As an added bonus I often stand on my swim deck while netting Kokanee in tight situations where I cannot make turns because of other boats being too close.


12-14-2005, 10:09 PM
My Custom Weld is an I/O plus it has a welded diamond plate full length swim platform. I use the platform to mount my baitwell, cooler, or livewell depending on the need.

The engine cover does take up a lot of space, but also serves as a table for tackle boxes, bait coolers, or as a casting platform. The swim platform is also very useful for wakeboarding or tubing. Offshore brackets are not as good for this.

Also, I never have to worry about the outboard being in the way of netting big fish. For me, I will take an I/O over an outboard any day and it costs much less for the same amount of power.

12-15-2005, 06:29 AM
viper2, Your boat is just what you need, you use it for other things besides fishing. I only fish in mine and during Salmon season we usually fish with at least 3-4 guys and having the extra room means a lot. Having a 20'boat with 20' of fishing room is just what I needed ;) ;D and the I/O's burn a lot more gas. My 150hp Yamaha has enough power to pull a couple of wake boards but I haven't found anyone that wants to get in the water yet ::) ;D

12-15-2005, 02:42 PM
Besides the amount of interior space used up by I/O's, here are some other things to consider when deciding whether to get an I/O or an outboard.

1.)I/O's don't have as good a power to weight ratio as outboards. Because of their extra weight they get poorer gas mileage.

2.)I/O's can also be more expensive to service. It's more difficult to gain access to the engine than it is for an outboard. Because of this, working on an I/O can be more labor intensive/expensive.

3.)However, the purchase price of an I/O's is usually lower than the price of a similarly powered outboard.


12-15-2005, 06:39 PM
As Vance said some people don't have big garages and can't get the bigger boats in their garage. >:(

But, with help from Vance and his knowledge of custom trailers you can still get a nice boat. ;D ;D


12-15-2005, 09:31 PM
You guys are right about I/Os using up gas, but my boat sure is fast, 190 HP and just under 3000 pounds loaded. It can go over 50 MPH in the Delta.

I still have teenagers at home, so the boat does double-duty in the summer for boarding and tubing in Folsom.

At 19', the Viper II is perfect for 3 fisherman, but 4 works when trolling.

Those Seahawks are the way to go when you need a lot of room. I have been drooling over the Seahawk O/S 24'. I may be able to afford it if my kids don't go to college.

Vance Staplin
12-15-2005, 09:37 PM
Hi Guy’s,

Here is a list of features I looked for when I shopped for a deep “V” hull. This type of hull design is for cutting heavy chop and swell in open water.

1. What degree of deadrise does the bottom have? Is the deadrise variable? If so what is the deadrise and width of the bottom and how does deadrise transform from the transom to the bow? This is extremely important when it comes to relation to ride and stability. An example: the 21 Ft Seahawk has a 18 degree deadrise at the transom for stability at troll or anchor situations that “quickly” transforms to a huge 42 degrees at the bow for slicing through heavy seas.

2. What is the beam measurement? What is the beam relative to the bottom width? A wide beam on a narrow bottom will easily tip and lean and can be unsafe.

3. How high are the sides? High sides prevent chop and waves from coming over the sides and swamping the boat.

4. For serious ocean vessels are self-bailing wet decks available/necessary for the type fishing that you do? This feature is not only for clearing the hull of water, it is a tremendous advantage when washing down the deck to clear slime and blood.

5. Does the boat have trim tabs? These are a huge advantage in deep “V” hulls and are a very expensive feature. I have found trim tabs are not only useful for leveling your load; they can be used to push the bow down to slice heavy chop.

6. How thick are the materials used on the hull? What is the bottom, side, and transom thickness? Bottom thickness and structure is incredibly important.

7. Hydraulic steering? Available? Standard?

8. How much dry storage is available?

9. How high is the windshield? Does the windshield have sides to prevent cold wind from blowing on the driver and passenger when the side curtains are not installed?

10. What is the warranty on the hull?

11. What is the painting process used on the hull? Has the metal been sanded or sand blasted before priming? Sand blasting covers areas more thoroughly, especially in tight areas for better paint adhesion and lessen the possibility of corrosion.

12. What type of aluminum is being used? 5086 Aluminum is known as being the premium material but is highly expensive. Some manufactures use 5086 on their bottoms, but use less expensive materials on the rest of the boat to save cost.

I hope this helps when making a descision on which aluminum boat to purchase.


12-16-2005, 10:11 AM
The boat length with bracket must be a manufacturer thing interprutation. *My Jetcraft is a SK2125 and measures 21' from bow to the back of the bracket. *Are NR brackets appendages to the hull or part of the hull? *My bracket is part of the hull and is accessible for storage. *I was surprised when I looked at a NR that it wasn't open underneath for storage.


Vance Staplin
12-16-2005, 11:34 AM
Hi Hinrid,

The 18 foot Seahawk with the Offshore bracktet measures about 20ft 6 inches from the bow to the back of the bracket.

Hope this helps


12-16-2005, 12:45 PM

Not the full answer I was looking for. Is the bracket on North River Boats bolted on or part of the hull? It seems to me that if it is really part of the hull, your boat measurement is shorter than should be advertised.


Vance Staplin
12-16-2005, 01:19 PM
Hinrid, now you have me wondering what is going on. On North River boats you get what it says. An 18 Seahawk is a 18 foot hull with and additional transome bracket welded onto the transom. This is sold as a 18 foot boat but the total length is over 201/2 foot long from the tip of the bow the plate where the outboards mount.

A 20 foot boat is a 20 foot hull with a offshore bracket welded on which makes the total length 221/2 long from the tip of the bow to the plate where the outboards mount. NorthRiver Seahawks also have storage along the rear of their transom on our bracketed boats. It is called rear cowling fish/storage boxes it is standard on the 2006 models.

I'm sorry to be unclear. I haven't paid much attention to the new Jetcrafts since they merged with Harborcraft. I cannot answer the difference in hull design because I haven't seen your boat. Looking at the picture I would have to ask what your boat measures from where it say's Pre-flex on your transom to the bow.

I hope this helps


12-16-2005, 02:17 PM
does the seahawk 18 have any porpoising problems with the sea bracket. It seems as if this feature could affect engine performance on take off. Fishrite will not even put an offshore bracket on their 18 performer (variable degree deep v). Larger four stroke motors put too much weight on the back of the boat resulting in an unbalanced ride.

12-16-2005, 03:43 PM
does the seahawk 18 have any porpoising problems with the sea bracket. It seems as if this feature could affect engine performance on take off. Fishrite will not even put an offshore bracket on their 18 performer (variable degree deep v). Larger four stroke motors put too much weight on the back of the boat resulting in an unbalanced ride.

I've experenced slight propoising which is easily trimed out.

12-16-2005, 05:17 PM
does the 18 seahawk come standard with trim tabs. C-Roach what make and horsepower motor do you have on your boat

Vance Staplin
12-16-2005, 05:44 PM
Trim Tabs and Hydraulic steering come standard on the 20 foot and longer NorthRiver Seahawk.(excluding the 20 LE model Seahawk)

An 18 foot boat is too short for trim tabs to work properly.


12-16-2005, 05:45 PM
I'd say they don't ;D but you can trim it with the motor.

12-16-2005, 05:48 PM
You're working to hard Vance, go fishing ;D ;D

12-16-2005, 09:40 PM
My bow to stern measurement is 19' + 2'-3"'s for bracket. As stated earlier, my model is a 2125 and TOTAL length to back of bracket is 21'-3". From a consumer loop hole stand point, is there an advantage to having your boat listed longer or shorter than it really is? From a trailering standpoint, does the 18' Seahawk come on a single axle trailer even though the length is actually over 20'?

12-16-2005, 11:03 PM

I noticed the 20LE does not come standard with trim tabs. With a 115hp on it, does it get on plane and does it porpoise without the trim tabs?


12-17-2005, 09:35 AM
WOW! Hinrid, that does not seem right to represent a boat hull with those measurements. I as a consumer would feel shorted if I thought I bought a 21 foot hull and the real length of the hull was only 19 feet. The dealer probably loved it because his larger boat was less expensive than the competitors. Consumers Beware! This is an apple and orange comparison. Another reason why I love my Northriver.

Vance Staplin
12-17-2005, 01:12 PM

Trim tabs on this style of boat are not used for putting a boat on plane. *They are used for leveling the load from side to side. *Deep "v" hulls will lean if not balanced out correctly. *Example; two people and an ice chest on one side and only one person on the other side. *Put the trim tab down and the boat will level out.

*My guess would be that the Seahawk LE doesn't have the Trim tabs and Hydraulic steering as an option to get into a 20 foot North River for about the price of their competition that doesn't provide those options standard. *Those two features are about $2100.00 worth of standard features North River provided that their competion didn't.

This will get customers that cannot quite fit a standard 20 Seahawk in their budget into a 20 foot Seahawk they can afford.

Since I started selling boats I have found the the customers don't always see what they are getting for the price. * I have had several people buy brands other than North River that didn't have trim tabs. *Then after time ask if we can install trim tabs on their boats. *I'm sorry but we can't

The same applies on the Jet boat side of the industry. *Injected motors can be a couple thousand dollars more than a carborated motor of the same size. *Then consider the leader in jet pumps the Hamilton 212 which can be a couple thousand over a American Turbine for example. *Right there the power plant could be anywhere from $3000.00 to $4000.00 more. *People don't catch it or are misled by sales people.

I had some guys come in the other day and look at a 19 jet. *They had just come from a competitor that had a V6 inboard with a A.T. pump. *The North River 19 Trapper has a port injected 350 with a Three stage pump. *That has to be somewhere around $5000.00 difference just in the powerplant and pump. *

All I can say without being out of line here is.... If you are looking into buying a boat, I don't care what style, Aluminum, fiberglass, cartop or sailboat, do your homework and see what you are getting for your money.

Hope this helps

Vance *

12-17-2005, 02:22 PM
Found a interesting link to a guys site with old aluminum boats. I have a 05 Duckworth that I believe is a very well designed and put together boat but if I had to pick a boat based on proven longevity I might pick a Crestliner. There is one on that site thats almost 50 yrs. old. Along with some other cool boats. Check out the Rexcraft with the big fins of that era. The good news is that the site proves that aluminum boats can last a hell of a long time. Worth checking out www.geocities.com/Yosemite/Rapids/5373

12-18-2005, 09:59 AM
TJW, I'm not upset as I got what I thought I was getting but am still a little confused how NR measures their boats. My boat came in the standard transom model and the offshore bracket model. When doing the measurements between the two models, I found the bracket length was a few inches longer than the standard transom well. So, I didn't feel like I was losing anything. I believe the comment that was made earlier about the bracket boats riding like a boat a couple of feet longer because of the design and location of the motors but no sure how this is actually realized between my boat and a NR sense they are measured differently.

12-21-2005, 04:15 AM
My 21 is exactlty 21 from bow to stern and then the bracket and motor stick out another 3 feet so the length then pushes 24 ft.

12-21-2005, 06:04 AM
HInrid, I don't understand, your boat is a 19', but measures 21'3", was it sold to you as a 21 footer or a 19 footer.? What does it say on your registration?

12-21-2005, 08:25 AM
Mickey, I'm glad we both don't understand. My boat measures 21'-3" from the bow to the rear of the bracket and was sold as a 21'er. As I stated above, it is almost exactly the same length as the 21' transom model with the space consumed by the transom well now being a bracket on my boat. I'm just unclear why Mo's and your boats weren't sold as 24' and 23'ers.

12-21-2005, 02:50 PM
They sell them for the length of the boat, the off shore backet is added on after. You get taxed from the registation length, so you are being taxed on 21.5' when you actually only have a 19' boat, sue the buggers ;D ;D ;D

12-21-2005, 03:17 PM
does the 18 seahawk come standard with trim tabs. C-Roach what make and horsepower motor do you have on your boat

Merc 115, runs like a dream pushes the NR with 3 aboard and gear top speed 38mph comes up on plane immediately

12-22-2005, 04:33 PM
I see that you have a NR 18” with the offshore bracket and I also noticed from your profile that your live in Antioch. I fish the delta a lot especially near Chain Islands, Montezuma and Rio Vista and I wanted to know how your boat handled the rough water. I am in the market for a NR or a Design Concept any additional thoughts on you NR for fishing the delta? What options are must haves?

12-23-2005, 02:30 PM
I see that you have a NR *18” with the offshore bracket and I also noticed from your profile that your live in Antioch. *I fish the delta a lot especially near Chain Islands, Montezuma and Rio Vista and I wanted to know how your boat handled the rough water. *I am in the market for a NR or a Design Concept any additional thoughts on you NR for fishing the delta? *What options are must haves?

I fish the same areas and have been out when it was rough and the NR handles it very easily. When I was putting on break in hours on the motor there were a couple of days when it was rough and ran up from the bridge through broad and up the sac to horseshoe with no problem.

12-23-2005, 02:33 PM
I see that you have a NR *18” with the offshore bracket and I also noticed from your profile that your live in Antioch. *I fish the delta a lot especially near Chain Islands, Montezuma and Rio Vista and I wanted to know how your boat handled the rough water. *I am in the market for a NR or a Design Concept any additional thoughts on you NR for fishing the delta? *What options are must haves?

I have just a plain jane NR I looked at the design concepts thoght they were nice but I like the NR better.

12-25-2005, 09:14 AM
One of the coolest boats I have found so far is the motion marine sxv. It has welded in diamond plate floors with a heater option on the outboard. Check out www.motionmarine.com

12-26-2005, 07:43 AM
Motion Marine and FishRite both build beautiful boats. Neither company has started to mass produce thier boats like other companies have.

12-30-2005, 01:43 PM
Motion Marine looks like a nice boat. However, the hull degree isn't sharp enough if you are in rough water imo. North River makes them up to 42 degrees I believe on the bigger boats. 18' Seahawk is about 22 degrees. I have a 19' Seahawk and it cuts the chop very nicely. Test drove a Weldcraft with either a 16 or 18 degree hull and it is nothing like my North River.

12-30-2005, 02:49 PM
Hi Guy's,
New to the forum but thought I could throw in on this topic. I have an 05 Riverwild aluminum jet with a 6.0 and Hami 212. Always had go fast boats up until now. This thing is the cat's a$$. It's more of an all around boat but fishes very well. Check them out @ www.riverwildboats.com Bob will build you anything you can dream up and I mean ANYTHING!!!!!!!!!!!!!


12-31-2005, 05:39 AM
Very Nice!!

12-31-2005, 10:09 AM
I'm new to the boards as well. I got a slightly more modest boat than cat_skinner. Nice boat cat_shinner.

We hope to fish the lower American up to Cal Expo and the delta rivers. We got the largest boat we could fit in our garage. Had we a another foot or so we would have got a NR Seahawk but were happy with the NR Mariner.

Doc advised me to either meditate or fish more. No brainer!!


12-31-2005, 11:43 AM
Thanks For the kind words,
One thing that was brought up in this topic was service. I'm in the situation of no dealer to speak of. The boat is now in Grants Pass getting some small warranty items taken care of. I look at it as a good excuse to drop in at Shasta ;). I would like to know if anyone could recomend a shop that does work on Marine Power engines and Hamilton pumps. Jetstream Concepts looks like the best bet so far. Sacriver marine is only taking their North River customers right now. Couple more pics.

Happy New Year to All,

12-31-2005, 07:53 PM
Beginners luck, what size Minn Kota do you have on your boat? It's the 17'10" right? How does the motor work pulling the boat? Did you have any problems with mounting?

Looking at Silver Streak boats but major problem is they are in B.C. What do you do if you need work done? One reason I didn't want to go Thunder Jet. I'll probably stick with North River when I get a bigger boat. Even then Sac. is over 6hrs away.

12-31-2005, 10:38 PM
Beginners Luck,

Nice Boat!

;D ;D ;D


01-01-2006, 06:20 AM
NRJohn: It's a 80lb powerdrive with the 24V set up. It's surprising how well it pulls the boat. As for mounting, be sure they mount it so the head (top) clears the center window when it's opened. (I assume you have a NR) The first time it was mounted the window would bump it slightly when being opened. Works great now.

I was trolling at Folsom recently and without it controlling the bow I couldn't have contolled the boat in the wind with just the kicker unless I gave it more rpm than I wanted. A trick I learned reading the boards here.

01-02-2006, 07:51 AM
Thanks for the info. Forgot to ask what's the shaft length?

01-03-2006, 06:16 AM
Not sure NRJohn but sure Sacramento Marine could give you that info for your particular boat. Keep in mind my boat, 17'10" Mariner, it the smallest one they sell. Everything could change if your running one of the larger Seahawks.

01-07-2006, 09:11 AM
A friend of mine told me about this forum and more specifically the subject about high-end aluminum boats. As a boat manufacturer and part of this industry it was very interesting to read all 181 replies on this subject. It is an exciting time in our industry with so many more people finding interest and benefits in this type of boat. More builders are producing a boat of high quality that can be used for both fishing and by the family for recreational sports such as water skiing and now wake boarding. From some of your posts it looks like you are doing just that. It wasn't that long ago that aluminum boats were, shall I say, ugly. Now they are beautiful boats that everyone feels proud to be in.

Thank you everyone for the posts, it was a very interesting read with lots of good information and opinions. I am looking forward to reading more of your posts on this subject and contributing in a non-biased manner where possible. After looking at the other forum subjects such as salmon fishing and steelhead fishing I am looking forward to contributing there also.

01-07-2006, 12:00 PM
Welcome Dave, As you know I have one of your boats and love it!As for all the different forums,There is alot of knowedgeable people in here that we can all learn from.Hope you enjoy it as much as I do. Brett

01-07-2006, 04:24 PM
heres a question for boat builders. Are your hulls electronically balanced? Heres a quote from the motion marine webpage. Just curious.

Motion Marine hulls are electrically balanced to catch more fish. (How can that be?!)

The electrical charge of a boat can be measured. We found that when dissimilar metals touch, it sends a current through the hull. Also when the electrical system is grounded to the hull, it sends a current through the hull. It has been shown to be true that fish are repelled by these currents.

Another problem with hulls that are not electrically balanced is electrolysis which corrodes hulls and bubbles paint.

Motion Marine hulls are wired with a 2-wire system rather than a 1-wire system ground to the hull. All of the electrical is routed in plastic pipe. We also isolate all dissimilar metals so any ambient current is neutralized.

Electrically balancing a hull extends the life of the boat as well as attracts fish. This feature is not found in other brands.

01-07-2006, 09:39 PM
I haven't heard of hulls charged but I have heard of "Black Boxes" that connect to downrigger wire line that is meant to draw fish in. I read about it on another board, I believe the trout board.That's all I know about it though.Brett

01-09-2006, 08:35 AM
jpayne, that’s a great question. Here is what I do know on this subject:

1. Never ground anything to the hull on an aluminum boat or you will have major problems with corrosion, paint blistering and it will repel fish. Ground everything back to the battery as stated.

2. Stainless steel cleats, handrails, etc. should be insulated from the hull to keep the electrical charge at a minimum.

3. The current can be measured with a good voltmeter. If you want to do that let me know and I can tell you how.

4. We also route our wires in a plastic pipe also to keep the wires dry, protected and out of the way. I have never considered that it will allow you to catch more fish.

5. I am not really sure what a two wire system is and have not heard that term. If anyone knows please let us know.

As long as the boat is wired correctly you should have no concern of catching fish. I have seen many different brand boats catch fish and win Kokanee Tournaments. From the description it sounds like Motion Marine is doing an excellent job in their wiring and are taking the time to make sure it is right. One of the added benefits of doing it right is that less electrical current is put into the water and that is a good thing. They are promoting that and in the world of sales and marketing there is nothing wrong with that.

01-09-2006, 10:54 PM
Hey guys. Even if you insulate everything and use double wires, most all aluminum boat hulls are grounded anyway. If you have an outboard with an electric starter mounted to the transom, the mounting bolts will make an electrical connection between the motor and the metal hull of the boat. Outboard motors are grounded to the negative terminal of the starter battery. This means the hull is also grounded to the negative terminal of the starter battery.. Larry

01-09-2006, 11:47 PM
Motion Marine might be referring to their large hulls where a common ground strip is used for all of the electronics. Making an effort to get ride of stray electrical currents at the design stage is a very good thing. But as David_Neff has stated, almost all of the wiring on higher end aluminum boats is pretty good. But it pays to look at the fuse boards and see that they are mounted on insulating blocks. The wiring should all be tinned marine grade stuff (if you see the name Ancor on the wire, you'll know it's the right stuff). All terminal connections should be sealed with shrink wrap or coated with liquid electrical tape. Good manufacturers run the wire through plastic conduit to prevent contact with the hull. Everything should be well above the waterline and be protected from spray. Finally, the connector on the wire to the bilge pump and switch should be mounted as high as possible. This is the source of a lot of stray electrical discharge in my own experience.

01-09-2006, 11:58 PM
Yep, having a common ground to all your electonics eliminates a bunch of floating ground loops which can result in stray electric fields around your boat. This makes it difficult to create a well tuned boat with a black box.. Larry

01-10-2006, 09:47 AM
This "High End" subject can hawk a lot of personal opinions. Everyone beleives their Boat is the greatest thing since sliced bread. Maybe that's true!
I bought my Boat with many different desires in mind. It had to be large enough to handle big waters and manuverable enough when in tight places. It had to have power to get me there and yet had to be trailerable and easy to load and off load. It had to have shelter from the elements and high tech electronics to find my way around in the fog or dark. The Radar is a must so I can keep you Yahoos from running into me when I'm trolling in the fog out on Stampede.

Motion Marine is a Boat that is "custom made". You can request whatever degree hull and design that you want. Of coarse the engineering designer is going to counsel you on the best design for the applications you have in mind.
One of the nicest features of this boat is the interior and exterior powder coat paint. It's easy to clean and takes a lot more abuse. I've rubbed a few docks and fences.
The Boat is pricey but this one was for life. By the way, the trailer quality is just as important as the Boat. ;D
I bought this Boat in Oregon and there has been no reason at all to believe I will ever have to take it back up there. The motors are the principle things that will require service or repair. Service is where you find it...I have Hondas(225hp and 8hp), so I take the Boat to a Honda service. Electronics would go to an electronics shop. There isn't much to go wrong with the aluminum Boat unless somebody torpedos me. I did coat the hull with two coats of Sharkhyde to prevent oxidation from salt and alcaline waters. Since this photo, I removed the sea rail and installed a 4" rail. That makes it so much easier to get in and out of when no dock is available. I also installed an 85lb thrust Riptide Minn Kota auto pilot/co-pilot. Windy days are easily handled now with that motor.


01-10-2006, 06:39 PM
Very nice boat Fishstalker!!!Brett

01-11-2006, 09:06 PM
Yep, FISHSTALKER's boat is SAWEEET! :o I drool like one of Pavlov's dogs everytime I see a picture of it.

Brett, I'd love to see a picture of your DC. I'm hoping Mr. Neff brings a whole slew of his boats to the ISE this month.

01-12-2006, 03:40 AM
That boat is siiiiiiick!!I really like the top and the rail on the bow.

01-12-2006, 10:39 AM
Bassassin - We will have some nice boats for you to check out. We are in the process of getting them cleaned and the Bling Bling polished. I'm looking forward to seeing you there.

01-12-2006, 05:59 PM
Bassassin,I'll email some pics to you.I don't know how to do it on the boards yet.And yes, Dave Neff makes some GREAT boats!Brett

01-12-2006, 08:17 PM
I like em all,I may Have an NR but I think they are all awesome rides,I guess that just makes boat a boat whore

01-12-2006, 08:18 PM
The boat sleeper thing didnt come out as I said but you get the idea.

01-17-2006, 07:00 PM
Once again Fishstalker,that's an awsome boat but, we're not all living large like you. ;)(or like doc said,RICH!) I figure your a cattle rustler out in the country somewhere.Or something like that. Not that it really matters. ;D I figure your boat has all the gagets on it too!. :) I bought my alumaweld stryker last year at cal expo.(loose goose's turn this year) I am very pleased with it. Like doc said, easy to install all the goodies yourself on it. I'm not a guide & don't plan on being one. If I was i'd buy a NR. ;D GL to those looking. ;)

01-17-2006, 10:48 PM
Thanks for the comps on the boat guys.
Chris - That was me on hwy 20 the other day.

01-18-2006, 08:54 AM
I know,I waved. I was in a hurrry to make some money. So I can by more crap for my boat. ;) I'm gonna pull you over for lunch, one of these days. ;D

01-19-2006, 06:43 AM
Sounds good to me. ;)

01-19-2006, 10:14 AM
A couple of years ago at this time of year I was very intensely looking at River Jet Boats. So I gathered all the available information I could from brochures, the internet, anything at all to help me out. I had been working my way up the boating ladder as it were, and was planning to graduate from my 17' Klamath. About that time they held a boat show at CalExpo, and I went full of anticipation. I really enjoyed it. I especially enjoyed the jet boats. Not many manufacturers were there, but I was eager to get any info, any handout, and to engage in conversation. after all this was to be a MAJOR purchase, and I wanted to be careful. My first contact was with an Oregon company. They had a couple of boats there and a hull, showing the "innerds." The young lad was helpful, patient, very well informed. Boyce was there, but no one was around to talk to. That turned out to be a good thing, sadly. The one experience I remember the most was that with North River. Let me tell you why. Much as though I tried I could not get those arrogant folks to talk to me about their boats. I felt I was invading their aristocracy. I got dirty looks when I tried to step into one of their display boats to get a feel for the interior. It really sickened me. To this day when I see a NR boat, I get bad vibes. I still cherish the experience however. It demonstrated to me the #1 lesson in buying a boat in this class. Find a reliable manufacturer/dealer that you can work with, and who will take the time to patiently answer all of your stupid questions. This give and take can last for months, but it is worth it. I found such with a ThunderJet dealer in Lewiston, Idaho. In July 2004, I purchased a new fantastic 21' ThunderJet Alexis, with all the bells and whistles. I purchased in confidence because the dealer was ever so patient with me, and who had enormous expertise to draw from. He arranged a lengthy tour of the manufacturing facilty in Clarkston, WA. To my thinking I could never have a better boat. The one on one contact and education I was able to get only enhanced the choice I made.

01-19-2006, 06:18 PM

I had the exact opposite experience with Sac River Marine when I bought my North River. I noticed you bought yours before Sac River Marine was in business. But I do agree with you that you have to find a dealer that you are completely comfortable with and will work with you. Sac River Marine was that dealer for me.


01-19-2006, 06:46 PM
Thats a first!Sorry to hear you had a bad experience but I think thats a rare experience with NR.These guys are good people!!

01-19-2006, 06:59 PM
I've read on another board about guys having a bad experience with NR sales guys. Same type of "tude"; arrogant and wouldn't give them the time of day. Lots of guys defended NR though. Personally I haven't had that experience. Bought my boat from the Redding store before the Sac. store was open. Nothing but good things to say. Would buy from them again if I was going to buy another NR and the Sac. store wasn't around. Sac. store saves 3 hours off my driving. Also didn't have a problem talking to guys at the Cow Palace.

01-19-2006, 10:49 PM
That is good to hear that my NR experience was the exception, and that the Sacto dealer is tops. Perhaps the good folks at NR read this forum, so that may help overall too. BTW, I just got my issue of River Jet Magazine and it lists some info about 50 manufacturers. Not that the info is in depth, but it is fun to read. Methinks NR is a growing company that will be around for awhile, and that is good news for "down the road" problems that may come up.

01-19-2006, 11:39 PM
That is good to hear that my NR experience was the exception, and that the Sacto dealer is tops. Perhaps the good folks at NR read this forum, so that may help overall too. BTW, I just got my issue of River Jet Magazine and it lists some info about 50 manufacturers. Not that the info is in depth, but it is fun to read. Methinks NR is a growing company that will be around for awhile, and that is good news for "down the road" problems that may come up.

I got my River Jet Magazine today too. I didn't even see North River mentioned in there (unless I skipped over it). I was surprised.

01-20-2006, 07:33 AM

I am sorry about your negative experience with a North River Dealer. If this was a couple of years ago it was probably an independent dealer out of the Redding area. The only two locations in California that now sell North River Boats are Xcess Marine in Redding and Sacramento River Marine. We also have factory stores in Roseburg and Portland, Oregon and Tacoma and Sumner, Washington. All of these stores work very closely together. We still have 15 other independent dealerships that are very closely monitored for customer satisfaction and customer service.

I learned my lesson with independent dealerships and decided that the best way to provide the type of customer service I demand was through a chain of factory owned and operated stores. I also have a much different idea of how boat sales should be handled - non commissioned! The last thing a person needs is a sales pitch. The most important part of the boat buying process is to identify the customers needs and match the boat that best fits their uses within their budget - not selling the boat that puts the most money in the salesman's pocket. Secondly when you walk into one of these two stores anyone there can help you. No one makes money by selling you something, they make money when they show up to work.

I am sorry for the negative experience that you had when trying to purchase a boat from North River. Because independent dealerships represent themselves they are not controllable by the manufacturing companies and sometimes create these situations. I am glad that you found a boat that you enjoy and that is the most important thing. If you ever need service or have questions give the guys a call at one of the stores, they are very knowledgeable in aluminum boats.

As far as River Jet Magazine. The customer base is too small for the cost. Lots of magazines to advertise in, I choose to spend my California advertising money in the Fish Sniffer.

Boats are a lot of fun and there are a lot of really good companies making aluminum boats. Do a lot of research and ask a lot of questions when you shop. Once you buy a boat enjoy it and use it.

I apologize again to fishwithgary. That situation has been resolved and it appears that the guys at the two North River stores are doing a good job taking care of the people they deal with.

Have fun, and catch a big one!

Brian Brush
President / CEO
North River Boats, Inc.
Aluminum Marine Construction, Inc. (Almar Boats)

01-20-2006, 08:41 AM
Brian. Good to hear from you. And I really appreciate your comments. The only reason I made my comments about my experience was a hope that some good would come from it, and it obviously has. I really enjoyed your AOJ shows, and I can see the same class in your company management philosophy. What is encouraging is that the manufacturers really do read the Sniffer, and "our voice" and concerns are being responded to. :D

01-20-2006, 11:44 AM
Fishwithgary, well sometimes life experiences just happen to send you down the right path. I admit I'm a little biased, but that Thunderjet is quite a boat! ::)
MM 8) ;D 8)

01-21-2006, 09:04 AM
I was at the Fred Hall show a few weeks ago and stopped by the North River area. I wanted to talk to the Sac guys about service on my new Riverwild. A fellow by the name of Tim or Mike, I think, from Washington talked with me. I told him what I was looking for. He knew that I was not interested in a new boat but he chatted with me for a good 20 min. about engines boats etc. Very nice man and a good rep for your company. If I'm ever in the market for a new boat I'll definatly look at North River again. I visited your Roseburg store and went on a demo when I was there, with a guy who was retired law enforcement. Good guy, very positive experience and nicest boat store I've ever been in.
Howard Harrow

01-21-2006, 11:23 AM
checked out he boats at ISE yesterday. north river and design concepts In the 18'range were the two I was most interested in . both are beautiful boats. I was more impressed with the dc due to its cleaner welds, minimum recommended motor size was 115, Point of entry on the delta angler is 35 degree and 15 degree deadrise at the transom, NR seahawk 28/12. DC has a 96"beam. NR has 88". I had heard about various boats with offshore brackets with balancing problems. so I looked into further and this is what I have found. The balance comes from hull design and fuel tank location. *The dc's fuel tank is not located to far back where it can cause problems with weight distribution. The *offshore bracket has a 20degree angle on it to tuck the motor under when fully trimmed. They leave a flat piece of metal sticking out in the back which is an adjustable trim tab. The hull is designed a steel jig that prevents any ripples which can cause porpoising. I dont want to beat a dead horse but when spending over $30 grand on a boat I get a little picky.

01-21-2006, 08:40 PM
Jpayne, that's very interesting about the porpoising. There was a rather long thread about this very topic on another board. It would appear that North River boats (including mine) seem to porpoise. Different boat owners like Boulton, Motion Marine, Woolridge and Willie said theirs didn't but don't think enough owners responded to know if you could draw any conclusions. There were enough North River owners though to draw a conclusion in my opinion. However, this problem may have been fixed (at least with the Seahawk) since they developed a new offshore bracket. If it is then that boat would be my next boat when I'm ready to buy.

01-21-2006, 10:55 PM
It seems as if alot of people choose their boat high end aluminum boat soley based on looks.

01-21-2006, 11:19 PM
Trim was designed to allow the operater of a boat to adjust the pitch of the bow and to free the bow of the boat off the water. It will also allow you to drive the bow down in rough water. When operating your boat it will react differently at different speeds and trim. If you can not make your boat porpise by trimming your motor up then you have a problem in set up. Motor position (usually to low), wrong prop, hull design, are several posible factors.

The point right before porposing is the point where your motor and boat are working their best togheter. This is also a very volitale point where wind, chop, another boat wake, weight shift, and numerous other things can cause your boat to porpoise. If your boat should start to porpoise trim the motor down slightly until it stops. You then are running at the most efficent position for your boat and motor, at that present time, under the conditions that have changed. In most cases once the porpoising stops you can then run the trim back up to the point you were at prior.

Weight and weight distribution is probably the thing that most greatly effects the performance of your boat and can make it porpise. When we set up boats at the factory and at our dealerships the boats have no weight in them. They are adjusted to run correctly for that condition. I would much rather have a boat that can be trimmed to the point of porpoise then to have a boat that is unable to be pried off of the water. When the boat is running correctly, the point right before porpoise, your motor is running the most efficent and you are using the least amount of fuel.

Try this some day. Trim your boat up to the point right before it starts to porpoise. Have somebody walk to the back of your boat and stand at the transom, it should porpoise. Then drive your boat around the lake with your motor tucked all the way under. Have the same person go stand at the back of your boat, if he is a big enough person I bet that the bow of your boat lifts and you pick up RPM's.. If you use your boat under these two different sceniors for a whole day you will see the advantages of adjusting your boat to the most efficent operating point, about a 25% savings in fuel cost.

If you think that you are having a problem with your boat porpoising bring it back to the store and take one of the service guys to the water. There sometimes needs to be a slight adjustment to the lip that hangs off past the rear of the transom. If you slightly (1/16 to 1/8 )bend that lip evenly at the bottom of the transom it will change the performance of your boat. Also different props can make a world of difference and we keep lots of them in stock for this reason. These adjustments need to be made after you have set your boat up the way you are going to use it. In most cases there needs to be no adjustments made. I guess what I am saying is that if you can not make your boat porpise then you are not getting full use of the trim function of your motor.

We built well over 600 Seahawks alone last year. There were maybe 20 - 25 that needed adjustment after the customer set the boat up the way he was going to use it.

NRJohn, bring that thing by the store and we will get one of the guys to go to the water with you and check it out.

Brian Brush

01-21-2006, 11:46 PM
Brian, thank you for the offer. However, I don't really see it as a problem per say and it doesn't bother me. It does what it does and I can make a quick adjustment to get it to stop. To me it's more a matter of curiousity in why some do and some don't.

01-22-2006, 09:56 AM
What is porpising?

If your running across the lake at 5000 RPM with your motor trimmed up and you hit another boats wake and your boat starts bouncing, you then tuck your motor a little and it stops.

You have your motor tucked under and you go to full throttle, as your boat comes to step you start raising your trim until the boat starts to bounce.

You have your motor all the way tucked under and you start to accelerate. Your boat bounces as it tries to get on step and continues while it is up on step. You adjust trim but can not make it stop.

The only one of these examples that is porpoising is the last. Watch a high performance Race Jet Boat get on step and you will see porpoising. The other two are functions of adjusting trim to the speed and conditions that you are operating in. This is why they put trim on outboard motors and IO's.

To answer your last question I think that intial set up is the most important issue. We could mount every motor on every Seahawk a hole lower and never have an issue like this arise again. I will not do that because you have lowered the motor powerhead closer to the water as well as made the prop run deeper. You have restricted the use of the trim function. You will create more spray. You will put more pressure on the mounting hardware of the motor. This will create more drag and cause lower fuel efficency.
It is not the recommended set-up of the motor company, and can effect warranty issues. And the list goes on.

North River would rather set the boat up the way we currently do and fine tune it to the specific needs of the customer, after he has loaded his boat the way he intends to use it. That way the boat will run the best with the load that the customer plans on having with him during use. The boat really needs to be set up once the owner of the boat determines the use of the boat with it's heavist load. In most cases it is Tuna fishing because of the coolers and ice needed. In most cases he can load the boat and it operates fine under this condition, however sometimes adjustments need to be made. This adjustment is usually adjusting the lower transom lip and sometimes a different prop. If it needs a small adjustment let us know, we are happy to adjust it.

I also think that alot of what your are seeing is a market of boater having to get used to something new. For years Heavy gauge aluminum boats were jets. They had no trim function. You push the throttle down and they went. Sometimes they would porpoise but usally only if you hang a cooler on the swim deck or hit a rock that bends the lip at the transom. Easy fix, bend the lip down and away we go. Now we have boats with a two foot extension hanging off the back and a 600 pound outboard motor hanging on it as well as a 112 pound kicker right next to it. You must drive these boats differently to make them work correctly. If you just push the throttle down and never adjust the trim you are cheating yourself out of some real fun, these boats are fun to drive.

I think that there is a learning curve to operating deep vee outboat prop boats for alot of people. The one thing I think that we (North River and Almar) could do a better job of is explaining to people how the boat works and how the trim and throttle function work together. How using the two of these together can help make your boat run differently and how they can be used during different conditions. How and why the boat will porpoise if the motor is trimmed to high and how to push the bow down in rough water.

NRJohn, let the guys know when you are going to the water in the Sacramento area. I will make sure one of them comes to the water and goes for a ride with you. I think that you have a 19' Seahawk IO. We only built a handful of those boats for Myers Marine in Redding. Those were built as Shasta Lake runabouts for the Redding market. We have played with some props on those boats and found some that work very well. They greatly increase performance and give you a much wider range of trim. I will probably be down for one of the last two shows in Sacramento and would be willing to meet you myself. I will let you know what show I am coming to and we will see if we could hook up.

Time to get back to tying leaders and getting ready to go fishing. Two days in a row with no rain, a river full of Big Chrome Bright Steelhead that is going to start fishing tomorrow. No rain in the forecast for several more days. What work is on my desk can wait - time to go fishing!

Brian Brush

01-22-2006, 10:04 AM
It seems as if alot of people choose their boat high end aluminum boat soley based on looks.
What make you say that?

01-22-2006, 05:55 PM
Brian again thank you for the offer. *

I really like my Seahawk. *I think it handles extremely well and it is indeed fun to drive. *Again the porpoising isn't a complaint just an observation and a curiousity since I had never experienced it in saltwater. *Only thing I want is a bigger Seahawk. ;)

Funny you should mention the prop. While at the Cow Palace I got into a conversation with Tim from the Tacoma Almar shop. After talking about performance he said my boat probably was under performing and wasn't proped correctly. Told me they had a I/O like mine a few years ago and it should be going faster than 30mph at 4000rpm. Anyways, he said check the speed vs. a gps not f.f. and get back to him. When I get the chance I'll do that. I really appreciate him taking the time to help me out.

You really should attend the Fred Hall Show in Long Beach. People need to be aware that there is more to alum. boats than just Crestliner and Tracker. God knows how many boats hit the "River" every summer not to mention the big pond.

01-22-2006, 06:29 PM
The sac river mechanic(Ron?)Spent several hours with my boat and I on the river Trying different props checking rpms,time to plane etc,,Until I was 101% happy with my setup.Brian Your guys are top notch.

01-23-2006, 06:28 AM
I sent you a PM about my boat. Would like to talk you you about it's porpoising problems.

01-23-2006, 08:24 AM
I rode in Trout_Chaser's boat yesterday at Pyramid and that hull definitely has a problem. We were very uncomfortable in a 2 ft chop that other North Rivers would have cruised right through. With the engine trimmed all the way in, the boat planes OK in smooth water. But as soon as it hits any significant chop, the front to rear cadence sets in. Jerry can stop the porpoising by putting the trim tabs all the way down but the boat then slows down and pounds unacceptably. That boat would have serious safety issues if he ever takes it offshore in the ocean.

I didn't notice a hook in the hull or any obvious hull defect or rigging issue. The boat tends to squat when running at speed which causes the engine bracket to throw a lot of spray. The lift at the stern bracket as the boat crosses a wave forces the bow down. The bow then lifts back up on the next wave resulting in the porpoising.

North Rivers have an interesting hull design with a flat area right at the transom. This gives a lot of stern lift and makes for an easy planing hull and good fuel efficiency. But the design may need a bit of tuning when the maximum weight is mounted at the stern. Jerry is running a 200 hp 4-stroke and an 8 hp kicker off the bracket. He has twin batteries mounted at the transom and ran with nearly a full tank of fuel.

I have ridden in several North Rivers and this is the only one that exhibited this problem although they all need to be re-trimmed in a chop. The solution might be as simple as mounting the engine higher and running a bigger prop. He turns 6,000 rpm at WOT with no prop ventilation right now. It will be interesting to learn how this problem is resolved. This is a very nice boat.

01-24-2006, 05:02 AM
I think I have an 18 pitch 4 blade aluminum prop and my boat sounds similar to yours.What are you running?My boat is always loaded with full fuel and 3 or 4 guys and the like and I run with the motor down most the way most the time unless its flat calm and I have lighter loads.Not to worry they will figure it out!!

01-24-2006, 06:34 AM
For the higher altitude (pyramid, Donner) I am running a 17 pitch 3 blade prop. The boat came with a 21.

A note to all....I sent a PM to Brian from North River on Sun. night. I was pleased to receive a phone call from Jay from Roseburg on Mon. morning. We talked for quite awhile and he asked many signifigant questions about the rigging, weight load, rpm etc. He is going to get back with me and come down here in the next few days to take my boat out to see what is going on! Hopefully they will figure this out.
I just wanted to give an initial "Kudos" to the NR team for getting to me right away and acknowledging the situation. I will post up when we figure something out. I am pleased with all other aspects of the boat if we can get this handling issue resolved. I believe it is a well made vessel that just has a unresolved isssue. Hopefully it won't be a big deal to take care of.
Trout Chaser

01-24-2006, 10:02 AM
I would consider adding a 5-degree wedge between the engine and mounting surface. This will tuck the engine under more for an increased hole shot and will also force the bow down on boats that are a little light in the front. It increases your trim range also and will give you the ability to better adjust the trim depending on load conditions. The best I have found are from Panther Marine Products www.panthermarineproducts.com. You can try trimming the hull at the transom and that does work to some degree, but nothing works best like getting more angle to the engine. Trim tabs help also, but is an over kill on most small fishing style boats. I hope this helps.

01-24-2006, 12:17 PM
I tried the 21 on my boat and I could eat a sandwich before it got up on plane.I do have a tower and maybe some other small options that may make mine a little heavier but a prop might help too.If I were to run my boat empty with out much fuel and myself at a lower elevation lake my prop would probably spin my engine to fast but under load and conditions I frequent its perfect.

01-24-2006, 12:32 PM
It's always better to be under propped (lower pitch) than over propped. You can control engine rpm and you don't want to be running around near full throttle anyway unless you own an oil company and an engine rebuild shop. ;)

The only outboard engine I ever blew up (I really mean that. A wrist pin let go.) happened when I was carrying a full load of people out to an island. The engine was propped so that it turned 5,200 rpm with just me on board. That was within specs, but that doesn't do the job when you load up the boat. After I rebuilt the engine I went with a prop that let the engine rev to 6,000 with just me on board and I never had a problem.

01-24-2006, 06:27 PM
That 5 degree plate might help me get more trim adustment too.Its an idea.I think those 200's are just so heavy,that you have to do something.But the prop is the easiest place to start.Thanks for the idea dave!!

01-25-2006, 08:34 AM
I am glad to pass on any information I have that may be able to help. Having the right angle on the Offshore Bracket is critical to the over all performance of the boat IMO. With research we found that other manufactures (mainly fiberglass companies) were using a transom angle greater then what we ever thought it would be. You might try a four blade stainless propeller for a better hole shot on a boat with a heavy load. Best of luck and happy boating!

01-26-2006, 08:03 PM
I really liked the Boulton skiff at the ISE. The boat looks great and seems to be be well built. It is available with 36" sides, 102" beam, and 16 degree deadrise. ALong way to go for a test drive and service but may be worth it. Any thoughts?

01-26-2006, 09:07 PM
I drooled over Mr Boultons boats also when I was shopping .I just coulndt get past the distance thing.DC also.Ive never heard a bad word about their boats either.Many six pack captains have em both.Greg Squires a local guide has an awesome boulton.Buy which ever one makes you happy I dont think you can wrong with any of those.The down side is you can only choose one..

01-27-2006, 04:58 AM
I really liked the Boulton skiff at the ISE. The boat looks great and seems to be be well built. It is available with 36" sides, 102" beam, and 16 degree deadrise. ALong way to go for a test drive and service but may be worth it. Any thoughts?
You owe it to yourself to take a test ride in a Boulton. Call Bill Henderson and set up a ride with him. That was the wildest ride I've taken in a boat. It took a week to get the smile off my face. That man can drive and he ain't affraid to get out and push if needed. ;) CS

02-01-2006, 09:49 AM
A lot of chatter here about Design Concepts being great. They have their share of problems too. A fishing friend of mine just took delivery of a DC boat. I went over to his house to look at it about a week after he got it. There was over an inch of oil in the bilge. The new engine was blowing oil. They replaced a few seals and sent him on the his way. Got to think that it may impact the life of a $25 grand motor. The bait box is square with no baffles so the water splashes all over even with the lid closed. Bad design.

I guess my point is that there are no perfect manufacuters. It takes a lot of looking, studying and a certain amount of luck to get a boat without problems. You would think a boat that you payed $60,000 plus dollars for would be perfect though.

02-01-2006, 12:37 PM
A buddy told me that his friend bought a new northriver inboard to fish lake almanor. He had to have the boat towed every other day due to the engine having vaporlock. Nicest boat on the lake getting towed in by 14 foot aluminums. No boat is perfect. It seems as if some have done more homework than others beyond the exterior finish. I guess what it comes down to is what you are comfortable with.

02-01-2006, 03:45 PM
Just a note about Boulton, Redwood Marine in Euerka is a new Boulton dealer, check out the website http://www.redwoodmarine.com/inventory.asp?category=Fishing%20Boats&make=Boulto n&model=Skiff

Then when you are up here looking at or buying boats hit up the rivers!!

02-01-2006, 06:56 PM
I picked up my Design Concepts boat earlier this year and haven't had a bit of trouble.I feel comfortable knowing Dave Neff and his reputation in the boat building business.I feel they are very good company and want to take care of their customers.I'm sure that every company has had their share of problems here and there.It's what they do about it that counts.I believe Dave Neff at DC would do his best to help his customers.That's my .02 worth, Brett

02-01-2006, 09:30 PM
If your friend is having problems with the engine he should go to an authorized mechanic for that make of motor. Builders put in engines but don't warranty them. I wouldn't necessarily blame DC or North River for the problem UNLESS they did something wrong with the initial installation.

No boat is perfect.

02-01-2006, 09:38 PM
I like this forum since I can post information and get feed back at the same time.

We have had a recent oil leak issue on the 6.0L small block V-8 engine. The oil leaks where two lines from the remote filter system enter the oil pan. With help from the manufacturer we have had a perfect track record with the repairs to date. You are right Fishmeister this is very concerning in a new boat, but from time to time you run into these situations and we do not take them lightly.

We pulled our hair out two summers ago on the vapor lock issue described by Jpayne. When California banned MTBE and switched Ethanol additive, fuel in the fuel rail was prone to evaporate when the hot engine was shut off. Ethanol has a lower burn temperature and the heat in the engine compartment on a hot summer day was enough to evaporate the fuel. Again, with help from Marine Power we added a second fuel pump, re-routed some fuel lines and the problem was solved. It was very frustrating to have new boats break down, but the problem was taken care of and new engines ordered appropriately.

It doesn't matter what name is on the side of the boat, problems like these will happen from time to time. We have teamed up with Marine Power because they are great at fixing the problem. Their rep was at our shop until 3:00AM working on an engine this past summer.

We have made removable plastic baffles that go in the rear 48" fish box to reduce water from sloshing out. If you install a permanent baffle then you can't get a big fish (salmon) in the box. If your friend wants a baffle made please have him call us. I have scratched my head on this one too, just not sure what the best solution is to make it 100% water tight and easily accessible at the same time. Any thoughts you can share will be appreciated.

02-03-2006, 05:03 AM
I have owned 3 "High End Aluminum Boats" the bottom line is, that when it comes to service and customer concerns you will not beat D.C. with Dave and Ron at the helm ;)

02-03-2006, 01:10 PM
I feel the same way JohnnieB.Dave and Ron were great with me too! Brett

02-12-2006, 04:30 PM
ok, so i hope that all of you are real clear on how to keep your boats bow either up or down in the water. my question is about prop blow out. I have a 2004 20' duckworth navigator. the problem i am having is whenever i am going anywhere from 20mph and above and turn at a medium angle, i get my prop to pull out of the water and rpm up big time. I have been told that going to a four blade prop would fix the problem. what do you sniffers think? and yes my trim is all the way down or just a little up when it happens.

02-12-2006, 05:05 PM
1. Try a stainless prop with cupped blades.

2. Mount your engine lower.

02-13-2006, 07:18 AM
Thanks dr. i will give the prop a try. i think if i where to lower my motor it would wake over when slowing down.

02-14-2006, 06:38 AM
Something that I just recently learned..
I don't what your prop is now but if for instance, it is a 3 blade AL. You could look at a slightly smaller dia. 4 blade. The smaller dia. helps keep the props tips in the water, the 4 blade makes up the difference. As Doc mentined, SS also has it's advantages.
Keep in mind, I am no expert on prop mechanics. Talk to someone at your dealer or others who are more versed in prop science, but it might give you a direction to go.

Trout Chaser

02-18-2006, 11:14 AM
Cat Skinner, nice boat. Bob at RiverWild is building us a 27 footer at the moment. Can't wait for spring...

02-18-2006, 10:27 PM
Took her out today for a bit.



02-19-2006, 08:06 AM
I agree, That is one pretty boat!!!I really like it!

03-02-2006, 06:58 AM
The topics posted in this forum have recently been brought to our attention here at Habercraft / Jetcraft and I must say that all the opinions posted have great value in understanding what is important to the boat buying public. I have read every post in this discussion as well as a few other discussion boards and I am glad to have spent the time on this review.

I wish to respond to the original post in reference to why we would place a stand up head compartment on the starboard side of the cabin as opposed to the port side, and clarify the reasoning behind that design decision. While in the design stage of our cabin layout for the 2825 Kingfisher it was discovered that by placing the head compartment in the aft portside corner of the cabin, the port astern visibility was greatly reduced and created a nasty blind spot from the helm seat. By placing the head directly behind the helm chair, and providing windows (with privacy curtains) on the fore and aft bulkheads of the head, an almost 360° range of visibility could be had from the main helm station.
When operating the craft from the out side stand-up helm station, and when the head is in use, the helmsman would need to look through the center window for forward visibility, it seemed to be a small compromise to step 12” to the side. It should also be noted that forward visibility is not compromised in any way during that time. One last point of clarification is that the cockpit helm steering station is for use only while at trolling speeds or docking the vessel. Our first & foremost point of concern in this area is field of vision while operating the vessel from inside the cabin as this is the location where the vessel can be ran at full speed.

I also wanted to briefly respond to the loss of the anchor & rode. I do tend to agree that a bow pulpit is a nice feature to have on a boat that will anchor regularly, and it is an option that can be added to a Kingfisher boat. Many boaters tend to leave our 2825’s in the water & pay moorage instead of trailering a “wide load boat” the additional monthly charge for 2’ of moorage is prohibitive in many areas, and thus this option is not requested with any amount of frequency and that decision is left to our customers. The benefit of a bow pulpit is more so to do with the convenience of additional foredeck space when storing your anchor & when setting or retrieving the anchor. The choice of windlass system is also left to the end user based on their own anchoring requirements and not installed here at the factory. I may be missing something, and would be happy to hear from anyone, but I don’t how having an anchor roller mounted on the bow as opposed to a pulpit would contribute to the loss of an anchor, unless perhaps the rode was faulty, or it was not attached to the tie off inside the anchor locker. Let me know if you have any ideas.
Looking forward to reading more posts.

Kevan Winship
District Sales Manager
Product Champion
Harbercraft / Jetcraft

03-02-2006, 09:09 AM
I appreciate your coming on the board to discuss this issue Kevin. While I may have been a bit harsh is calling the head location "stupid", I really do feel that there is a significant design issue there. I understand that that locating the head on the port side would create a visibility issue for the inside helm station. But that would seem minor compared to nearly complete obstruction of the operators view from the outside pilot station when the drapes are drawn in the head. Passengers kept forgetting to open the blinds after using the head and the skipper needed to repeatedly go inside (after cleaning his boots ;D) to open the blinds. He found the location of the head to be quite frustrating. I appreciate how difficult it would be to locate the outside helm station on the port side (with respect to the steering), but that would solve the problem.

As far as the lack of an anchor pulpit goes, I've had a lot of experience bottom fishing in Florida waters and everybody who had to anchor up several times a trip used pulpits. They offer 2 advantages when trying to free a fouled anchor: 1) you can see where the anchor rode is relative to the hull and 2) the pulpit and pulley provides a degree of "spring" when the bow comes up on a wave when you are right on top of the anchor with a tight rode. Now my only experience was with fiberglass/wood pulpits and I understand that an aluminum unit built as part of the hull would not provide the same mechanical advantage. But if I was buying that boat, which needed to anchor up in strong currents for halibut fishing, I would have ordered or had custom built a flexible anchor pulpit.

You can see from my posts that I fully understand the compromises that need to be made in designing and manufacturing any boat and I feel that you provided a very rational explanation for the head location. The purpose of this thread was not to criticise boat manufacturers, but rather to give a heads up to the folks on the board who are thinking of buying new boats. *My point is that a buyer should not just walk into a high end boat dealer and expect that the first pretty boat the salesman shows them will work well for them. Everyone should be encouraged to do as much research as they can and to put a lot of thought into the process when buying a new boat. If every buyer took the time to do that (and you can see that a lot of sniffers do spend the time), the end result will be more satisfied customers and better dealer relationships.

03-02-2006, 01:19 PM
Thanks for the reply drstressor, and also for your point of view.

03-03-2006, 02:40 AM
Brian Brush's post indicates a level of understanding, with regard to porpoising and trim, that few others here seem to possess....

Well said.

03-07-2006, 01:17 PM
it looks like were becoming popular. owners of boat companies are not only reading, but posting on the boards!!! pretty cool! ;)

here is my two cents on high end aluminum boats. when we spend between 30 to 40 thousand dollars on a boat the ship and power plant should not be an issue. meaning the manufacture should have all that worked out and guide the buyer in the right direction to meet our individual needs with no problems.

what separates the high end aluminum boats from the rest is the craftsmanship and customer service. if the manufacture can turn the boat into a fishing platform that meets the buyers individual needs thats what separates the the two classes of boats.

i had over 15 different specific things done to my boat during manufacturing to make it into the fishing platform i wanted. 5 of those things wernt just options. i had ideas and equipment that i took to them and they came up with designs and ideas and built from scratch. everyone i take out makes comments on the things they did and how much nicer and easer it makes the boat to fish out of.

in the end, all of these boats posted on here are very nice machines. the most important thing is at the end of your fish day you love your boat. craftsmanship and customer service is key in making that happen!


03-12-2006, 09:15 AM
This link was originally posted by RonG in another thread. *It contains much useful information about comparing welded aluminum boats. *I am posting it here for archival purposes.


Here's the link to Ron's thread:


03-22-2006, 01:20 PM
I'm in the market for a 20 footer and was wondering what the word on the street is for the Rogue Marine Scramblers ? I took a look at one and they seem to fit in the category but don't know much about them.

03-23-2006, 11:51 AM
I looked at a 20 foot scrambler last september when I was shopping. I decided not to get in because the deadrise was a little flat for rough water, came with Mercury only engines (didn't have a good experience with my last mercury o/b) and the trailer did not look as heavy duty. The boat was built nicely, thick aluminum sides and bottom...I finally ended up getting a 20 ft NR Seahawk because the NR was more suited for my use in the delta and bays and the price difference was only $2K more for the NR. If you decide on the rogue scrambler, they did come out with a deep vee model for 2006. The internet site is www.roguemarine.com Have fun shopping.

03-23-2006, 12:48 PM
ot, thanks for the reply. From the quotes I've got so for, the difference in price between the NR seahawk is $5k-$8k and I think the deadrise is equal at 18 degrees. I too thought the trailer was a little sketchy and would prefer a honda or yamaha.

03-23-2006, 03:39 PM
sicdog, you shouldn't have to buy the trailer the boat is sitting on. My boat was sitting on a bolted galvanized trailer with plastic fenders. I upgraded to a fully welded galvanized with metal fenders. The trailer shouldn't have an impact on any boat manuf. you want.

03-23-2006, 10:23 PM
sicdog, check your pm

03-24-2006, 09:39 AM
* * I've been shopping and comparing boats for over a year now and two things that jump out at me about the Rogue Scrambler are the bottom thickness (0.160) and the width (66"). *Standard for most aluminum boats of this class are 0.190 bottom thickness and at least 72" wide on the bottom. *If you are serious about a Rogue, take it out on the water and compare to a wider bottom boat. *My .02, Rick. 8-)

03-24-2006, 03:49 PM
Rick I have owned both 66 and 72 and wider boats. The wider boats were much more stable, they handled bigger payloads. just about everthing was better.

04-03-2006, 12:24 AM
any one have any knowlege or opinions about the advantages or disadvantages of outboard jet versus inboard jet in a sled type boat used primarily in rivers and maybe delta ive looked at a super v 19ft and the NRscout thanks for any feedback

04-03-2006, 12:27 PM
Brand new here! *Found the forum researching new boats and glad I did. *Lots of great information. * I will be having a new boat built for offshore Alaska ready in spring 2007. *I have decided on a 28' x 9' 6" powered by twin 200hp Etecs. *The outboards leave the deck flush and with plenty of room for a huge fish box (halibut). *I have narrowed it to 2-3 builders with Almar in the running. *With my two previous boats I have learned there is no "perfect" boat and no matter how much you spend there can & will be problems. *This forum is great to keep so many issues in mind and hopefully minimize the problems. *Good Fishing!

04-03-2006, 05:37 PM
Isn't Almar the sister company to North River?

04-04-2006, 11:43 PM
Yes, if I understand correctly, North River and Almar are made by/owned by the same parent company (Aluminum Marine Construction, Inc.). I believe they make a solid boat.

04-05-2006, 08:05 AM

This is a conversation I have on a regular basis. Here are the pros and cons of each power option.

Outboard Jets:

1. On a 19' boat you will need a 150hp engine that will be 105hp at the jet pump. This package is going to cost you more then a small block V-8 engine with a good jet drive.

2. Maintenance cost on an outboard jet is more then an inboard.

3. Fuel consumption can be less depending on how you run it.

4. More room in the boat.

5. On average shorter life span then an inboard engine.

6. Easier to get to the jet intake if you plug it up.

7. Lighter then the inboard package.

Inboard Jets:

1. Weight more, though the increased HP more then compensates for the added weight.

2. More HP for the amount of money spent.

3. Ability to pull a wakeboard or a tube if so desired.

4. Longer life span and less maintenance costs.

5. Increased hole shot with added HP and jet drive design.

6. Higher resale value.

Since these outboards have become more expensive we have seen a trend towards the inboard, though they do take up more room in the boat. When it is all said and done the biggest and only advantage of the outboard jet is the room you gain inside the boat.

I hope this helps and good luck on your boat buying adventure! :)

David Neff