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  1. #1
    Cadet
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    Default best aluminum boat?

    I know I will get alot of opinions but who makes the best deep v alumin7um fishing boats?

  2. #2
    Lieutenant Commander
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    What size?

    Kelly

  3. #3
    Supreme Mariner Silvertip's Avatar
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    Are you trying to start a fight??? Lund, Crestliner, Alumacraft, and about a dozen other manufacturers. Depends on what you want, how you fish, where you fish, what you fish for, how many people you fish with, how fast you want to get to the places you normally fish at, and how much money you have to spend.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    Not trying to start a fight,just a simple question for those who want to give their own opinion.I'm looking for a 19-21 deep v boat for fishing lake trout and walleye that can handle big water.Also want a boat that gets on plane and gets a good speed for the recommended hp.

  5. #5
    Admiral CATransplant's Avatar
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    I take it you're somewhere in the upper Midwest, then. I think that, if you stick to the major brands, Lund, Crestliner, etc., it'll be hard to go wrong. They each have their followers and perform well.

    I think what I'd do is start visiting dealers (assuming you're buying new). Somewhere, a dealer has a leftover model from last year, an order that the buyer backed out of, or something else that will make a boat a great deal for you.

    Don't be afraid to range out from your home town...I'd drive several hundred miles to save $1000. Somewhere, there's a boat with your name on it. And, as the season goes on, the prices go down, too.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    "handle big water. Also want a boat that gets on plane and gets a good speed for the recommended hp"

    Unfortunately these are conflicting requirements. As for boat brands, I'd include Alumacraft, Crestliner, G3, Lowe, Lund, Polar Kraft, Princecraft, and Smoker Craft. Which is a bunch, I know. Motor brand choices with your local dealers may well narrow this down though. May as well stick with the motor(s) you like.

    Kelly

  7. #7
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    Quote Originally Posted by KCook View Post
    "handle big water. Also want a boat that gets on plane and gets a good speed for the recommended hp"

    Unfortunately these are conflicting requirements. As for boat brands, I'd include Alumacraft, Crestliner, G3, Lowe, Lund, Polar Kraft, Princecraft, and Smoker Craft. Which is a bunch, I know. Motor brand choices with your local dealers may well narrow this down though. May as well stick with the motor(s) you like.

    Kelly
    Thanks for the reply.I was looking at those boats and I want a 175 e-tec or 175 optimax for an engine.I sorta thought that all of those boats you mentioned are all very good quality.

  8. #8
    Supreme Mariner Silvertip's Avatar
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    Add Sylvan and MirroCraft to the list. The majors (Lund, Crestliner, Alumacraft) will have the best resale down the road.

  9. #9
    Commander
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    If your asking for the "best" those other brands are in a different class altogether.
    Mine has 10 inch aluminum box beams under the decking that run both sides longitudally and tied together with 3in. square aluminum tubing transversally.
    All seams and joints are continuous welds on both sides. This constitutes a "rockhopper" hull. This is done even in places that aren't seen with the prettyest welds you can imagine.
    The aluminum hull and decking material is a bit thicker also.

    http://www.northriverboats.com/

  10. #10
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    Are the targa's built by Tracker a good boat?I looked at their website and they look like a nice boat.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    Optimax should be very easy to find, since so many aluminum builders are now under the Brunswick tent. E-TEC may be more of a challenge, depends on your dealers.

    I wish my Tracker had been a Targa model. The Targa models really do look nice. May be as well built as some of the others. But the Tracker name just won't get many shoppers excited, come resell time.

    If this is to be a new purchase, not used, then picking out the dealers you like will certainly shorten this list.

    Kelly

  12. #12
    Seaman Apprentice
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    i would go to heavy gauge take a look at the north river, resale is good and you get a chance to customize to your taste

  13. #13
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    Saw a Bayhawk very similar to this one with a 115 Yami on it at the local boat show this spring for 23K. Since it had canvas on it, it wasn't a total strip model.
    Well worth the price when you consider these aren't mass produced boats.

    http://www.northriverboats.com/bayhawk.html

  14. #14
    Moderator ezmobee's Avatar
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    Just catalog shopping and I was impressed with the features that Starcraft and Sylvan aluminums had,
    1976 18' Starcraft SuperSport 90HP Evinrude
    Restoration thread http://forums.iboats.com/boat-restoration-building-hull-repair/18-starcraft-supersport-restoration-357767.html
    1966 16' Starcraft Jupiter 85HP Johnson
    Restoration thread http://forums.iboats.com/starcraft-boats/ezmobees-1966-jupiter-338633.html sold

  15. #15
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    Just remember that you get what you pay for. If it's substantially cheaper then there are reasons for it.
    1996 Crestliner 2160 Phantom, 1996 Evinrude 130 HP

  16. #16
    Petty Officer 1st Class Esox's Avatar
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Silvertip View Post
    Are you trying to start a fight???
    That was funny but so true!
    Mike


  17. #17
    Petty Officer 3rd Class
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    I've got an old 18' Crestliner and love it. My father in law has an older 18' Lund Tyee. With aluminum boats the term big and fast really isn't as much of a conradiction as it may seem.

    I always thought that if I had the cash, the Lund Baron would be cool. Big deep V ment for big water with cush.

  18. #18
    Petty Officer 1st Class
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    That’s a loaded question sure to start some debates. All aluminum boats are made very well. Lund has a very large following with the walleye guys and probably has the best resell value. It seems that all others try to compare to Lund. But I’m bias I own an 18’ Lund Fisherman.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    I went and looked at a Tracker Tundra and wow what a beautiful boat.The only thing I don't know if I like is that they only come with a mercury.Anybody seen a Tundra with a different outboard other than a merc and does anyone have any experience with this boat?

  20. #20

    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    I will chime in on Tracker since you are interested in them. First you probably will not get much support in the forums for tracker boats, but I bought a new one recently. Its a pro guide 17 with a 115 optimax. I also looked at the Targa but liked the lower sides of the pro guide for less money, other than that they are very similar with the Targa being little wider, deeper and steeper deadrise. I also looked at some other brands and compared before buying.

    I got the boat to get my sons and I out fishing. It will see multi uses also, lakes, river, delta with a little tube pulling now and then for the kids. So far I really like the boat, it is roomy for its length, and rides very good in choppy water. But I have had problems with a crappy steering system, tracker has replaced that already but with just another crappy steering system. Seems to be a couple very tight turns the cable makes getting back to the motor, they are now offering to replace it with Hydraulic steering. Another problem is porpoising at just around 4600 rpm and I have to throttle back at 5200 rpm because it gets a little scary. This leaves me without the performance the motor is capable of since its rated at 5750. As I speak Tracker is also working on a solution to the porpoising problem. I think it is overweighted at stern and light in the front, we will see. The boat wants to hug the left side of trailer when being pulled out of water and ride up on a fender well some, Tracker has authorized a custom trailer busness here to add side bunkers and correct that minor but irritating problem. Tracker so far is acknowledging and taking care of any problems.

    To get a second opinion on the porpoising problem I have talked to another marine repair and setup busness. This place was recommended to me since they set up new boats with motors, jackplates etc., and also do the welding for repairs on alum boats. Including all the top brand names in alum boats.... you know the ones that cost about as much as a small house. I am taking my boat to their shop for an anaylisis of what is causing the porpoising and stiff steering and what they may recommend to fix it. In our conversation today he told me he has worked on the new tracker boats and the all welded hulls are solid with good welding. Again you probably will not get much support for Tracker boats, I believe they may desserve some of the hard knocks from the past but feel I got a very good bang for my buck compared to some of the other alum brands out there ... which can cost enormous amounts of money.

  21. #21
    Chief Petty Officer thurps's Avatar
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    Bayrunner hands down.

  22. #22
    Seaman
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    Heh, I grew up around Lunds so I'm partial to them, but a co-worker's family runs a Crestliner dealership and I just fell in love with their little 1600 Fishhawk package. Not that I've got the cash to spend on a new boat but I will definitely check out Crestliner too when I get ready to upgrade my little BlueFin.

    I can't say that any brand is better than another. It's just like ford vs Dodge vs Chevy trucks. Everyone will have their own favorite...do some digging and you'll find yours.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    Do not forget about xpress boats I love mine.

  24. #24
    Petty Officer 1st Class firehog6305's Avatar
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    I would say starcraft makes the best big water alum boat, I really liked my 191 islander w/ cutty cabin, handle the large waves in the san francisco bay just fine, the only problem with a alum boat in rough water that I hjave found, is that when you anchor to fish, its so light, that you get toss around a bit, had lots of power with the mercruiser

  25. #25
    Lieutenant Junior Grade
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    Default Re: best aluminum boat?

    I recently bought a new Alumaweld. I am really pleased with it. I got more than I expected. It will probably out last me.

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