View Full Version : Boat/motor recommendations?

10-10-2005, 12:10 PM
My first post here, and let me say how happy I am to have stumbled across the Fishsniffer site. Looks like good folks here and lots of them!
I hope this fall/winter to buy a general purpose aluminum fishing boat and motor for use on Southern Oregon freshwater lakes (for those familiar -- Howard Prairie, Fourmile, Lake of the Woods, Klamath Lake, etc.) and in estuary waters at the mouths of the Rogue, Chetco, Millicoma, Coos and Umpqua. Some of my best memories are of trolling coastal estuaries with my college pals for salmon and searun cuts.
I'm looking for a boat that's stable and uncluttered, that rides dry with three people and will be safe in coastal winds and tides inside the jetties trolling for anadromous fish and doing some crabbing. Probably 2/3 of the use will be in freshwater lakes.
I'm considering Gregor, Valco, Klamath, Smoker Craft and Crest Liner and like the Alaskan-style split seat configuration in a 14-16-foot boat. As to the powerplant, I think I would want at least a 9.9, and maybe a 15.
Also considering the Crest Liner modified V Jon style. A local boat shop would sell me their 16-foot modified V jon with new 15 horse Johnson four-stroke and a new trailer for $4400, which is near max for my budget.
Anyone have thoughts on this? I may actually hunt for a used rig if I can settle on best makes/configurations.
Appreciate any advice.

10-10-2005, 01:17 PM
OB, welcome! It sounds like you have some general ideas about what you want. There are enough folks here that someone will have owned one at some point to comment. My small 2 cents would be to go to the following website and do a search on some of those brands and see what is available, hopefully in your area.


10-10-2005, 07:18 PM
I would personally reccomend shopping around and looking for something used. You may be able to find a good boat that is a few years old and in good condition while saving yourself a significant amount of money. Follow the advice if Hinrid and also check the following websites: ebay motors (just have the search line up the results "nearest distance first") then look in CA. I found a bass boat down in southern cal. on ebay,went down and looked at it and bought it. Also try ablboats.com and the classifieds on this site.
Best of luck,

10-11-2005, 09:35 AM
I've seen some pretty decent boats on www.craigslist.org so you might want to give that site a try. It is broken down into regions (you could try Portland, Seattle, or even Boise) and look at areas you would be willing to travel to buy a boat. Good luck ;D

10-11-2005, 11:02 AM
www.iboats.com has a huge listing and you can narrow it down by location.
2Shakes ;D ;D 8)

10-11-2005, 12:15 PM

I've got a Lowe 16' Modified V Jon like you mentioned - 70 or 72" gunnel to gunnel . Very stable fishing boat and with tiller steering more usable room than most boats even 4' longer . I've used it quite a bit in Tomales Bay and SF Bay even when the water was white capping ( coming back in )and never had more than a little spray get inside . Use it to troll the lakes for trout/ kokanee , delta for sturgeon / stripers and the rivers for salmon , just a good all around design for a fishing boat . I've had deep V boats and don't see any advantage of that design in a boat this size , plus you can't fish or move about safely in front of the front bench on a V design .

I also owned a 14' Sea Nymph in the same hull design , actually same boat just 2' shorter, Sea Nymph and Lowe joined forces or one bought the other out - not sure . Sold it and went to a new 19' fiberglass Cuddy , kicked myself in the butt for years for that move . Went boatless for about 10 years and returned to my roots . Happy as can be , again !

Your price on the Crestliner sounds pretty good , I bought my boat with a 25 hp Yamaha 4 years ago for $6000 , good deal at the time .

Good Luck , Dan

10-12-2005, 07:26 AM
Dan: Thanks for sharing your experience with the modified V jon. I'm kind of leaning that way because of the space and stability while still having enough V not to pound too badly. If you weren"t out in serious chop like you get in SF bay would you feel safe with a smaller motor?

10-12-2005, 11:23 AM
OregonBill ,
Originally I was going to put a 15hp on a 14 ' mainly because of cost . My wife was with me when I bought the boat and thought she might want to go along sometime , maybe even fish ! She wanted a little bigger boat / motor , who am I to argue with the boss ? Anyway to your question , yes I would feel safe with a smaller motor in real rough water as I would slow down and sneak back to shore / ramp . But it is nice to get somewhere ( off the water ) quickly , before the wind and waves really get rough . The main thing you need for the ocean is a dependable motor (new) or a backup of some sort is a even better idea . There is a big difference in power and speed between a 15 and 25 hp. Where a bigger motor would be more handy is when you have a big load , a couple extra fishermen , crab pots , etc .

My first 14' had a 40 hp 2-stroke motor , scary fast but still handled nicely for not having much of the boat in the water


10-12-2005, 09:10 PM
If you are in Oregon, you are in the heartland of North River Boats. That is where I would be looking.

10-12-2005, 09:33 PM
From the sound of it you are looking in the right area. If you are in the Medford area, there are more doggone boat manufactures there than you can shake a stick at. I like my 14' gregor with a 15 suzuki 2 stroke but would prefer something like a 16' with a 25 hp or so. I have fished almost all of the water you mentioned and a well built welded aluminum will serve you well. Also look into fishing up around Odell and Crescent lakes. I patrolled up there one season and caught many kokes, macks, and browns.
P.S. Crescent had the biggest kokes.

I'm a Bill from southern oregon also.

10-13-2005, 08:49 AM
Thanks guys. North Rivers are made up the road in Roseburg, and are gorgeous boats, but beyond my price range, I am sure. Here in the Rogue Valley we have Alumaweld, Fish-Rite, Willy and other aluminum boat builders, but again, only their drift boats are in my range and I want something more versatile.
I'm leaning pretty strongly toward trying to find a welded aluminum modified V jon style -- probably a Crestliner or a Lowe. If need be, I will try to buy a little more boat and a little les motor to get started, then upgrade the motor when I can afford to.

10-13-2005, 09:15 AM
i was just in port alberni on vancouver islaand and saw a boar there alum. welded with big door in front and a tonque that pinned to it. the wheel fit up into a pocket on both sides inside the hull. you tow the boat to where you are going, put the tonque in the truck, float it , then pull your wheels up. its a modified v,tri hull. they use them suppling goods to the many coves and resorts. they look ocean, river seaworthy as hell. the big door makes it look like a landing craft. i think it will haul a pick-up but couldnt get back to talk to them or anyone that knew anything--steve

10-13-2005, 09:20 AM
boar should be boat , other should be supplying

10-14-2005, 06:14 PM
Check out the classifieds in the Oregonion...they usually have a goodly number of boats of the type you are looking for.

10-15-2005, 04:58 AM
Welcome OregonBill.
If you plan on taking her into the ocean try not to skimp on the motor size. Most of the time a small motor is fine but once in a while you really need the extra power. A good example is when you’re coming back into a long narrow entrance with a strong tail wind with braking waves; you may need to follow the waves in fast to keep from getting swamped.

10-15-2005, 08:01 AM
Thanks guys. I will check the Oregonian classifieds, too. Always looking for an excuse to visit Portland. Also must note that I am not planning on any open ocean fishing from the rig I am looking for, which is why I'm thinking I could be safe with 15 horses.