What is the general opionion of Wellcraft? I just bought a 1996 26 Excel Se. Power pack is a 7.4 w/ bravo 2. Not much mentioned on this sight about them. Any opinions on construction,fit and finish ect.
There hull's are amoung the best ever made for sea worthyness, not to spectaclar in eye candy in the under 200,000 price. But i doubt you find a boat that take's on heavy sea's or goe's as fast in it's class for the same money
Stickly a opinion your milage may vary.
Speed is how fast you hit the wall
Torque is how far you move the wall"
I bought a well cared for 1990 216 Ecipse w 5.7L Mercruiser/Alpha One. I have been extremely pleased. For a 18 year old boat, the lines look great. I've seen much newer boats on our lake that look much older. It's pretty heavy and takes the chop very vell. Enjoy!
I have a 1987 23" Wellcraft CC. If anything it is overbuilt. To give you an idea, the sides of the console are 1/4" glass, 3/4" ply, and another 1/4" glass. It is the best riding boat of it's size that I have been on. I bought the rig in 1994. I did have the transom redone about 5 years ago but that was due to lack of a good sealer when the engines were mounted.
I had kind of the same thought. My 26 excel se has 1/4 in glass and 3/4 ply on the sides, seems like a well built boat, but I didnt know because it doesnt seem like you hear about the excel se model much.
I looked into Wellcrafts when I was shopping used last year - basically they are tanks. Well-built, on the heavy side, take chop well and if cared for last forever. You do need plenty of power because of the weight and design is more for comfort, durability rather than raw speed.
I have owned several wellcrafts now and other than being unusually heavy for a given size compared to other boats, as stated before, I would not hesitate to buy another or recommend somebody else to buy one. They are exceptionally well-built and very sturdy. Fit and finish can be lacking sometimes and you usually don't get all the bells and whistles of some of the other brands, but if you want a boat that will take a real pounding and last a lifetime, there are only three brands I can think of in the trailer boat range, Grady White, Wellcraft or Boston Whaler. Just my opinion, of course and I'm sure others will disagree.
Simply reading Chapman Piloting does not make you an expert at all things boating, but it'll get you started.
Wear a life jacket around the water; at the very least it'll make your corpse easier to find.
Thats exactly what I was hoping to hear. I am new to big boats and just bought a 1996 wellcraft excel se. I wanted to buy a good sturdy boat first time out so I wouldnt have a bunch of headaches later.
Count me as another happy Wellcraft owner. Bought my 91 216XL Eclipse w/7.4l Bravo1 this spring and ran the he!! out of her this year. Over 1100 miles.
Definiatly a heavy, well built boat, but with a 7.4l she'll move! 57.5mph GPS.
I had also been shopping the used markets for the last year (loads of crap out there! Oh the horror stories.....) after getting cold feet on buying a new cruiser - too much money for an early life crisis - so I found a Wellcraft Nova 23 and fell in love with it the moment I seen it. After two weeks of solid elbow grease she is a real head turner! I have to replace pins/bushings as I have some slop in my steering (boat is a '91) and I can't really complain about that because its age-related. I boat on a big river - rought water and this boat handles great. I love it and despite my dad wanting to upgrade to something bigger, I'm keeping this boat! Good lines, good layout.... Looks better than a lot of boats its size that are out there......
I bought a brand new Excel 23F walkaround in 1995. I get the idea that Wellcraft bought out a small startup manufacturer to expand their low end line of inexpensive boats. My boat has some design problems that an experienced builder like Wellcraft would never have made. Fishbox drains that are higher than the bottom of the fishbox, so they don't drain completely. Stress cracks in the fiberglass after only a few seasons. Fishbox covers that also started cracking after a few years of people walking on them. They will eventually fail completely and need to be replaced ($$$). Inaccessable pumps and hardware under the deck. Chinsy, thin moulded plastic used on the built in rod holders and speaker /storage compartments.
I wouldn't say I'm disgusted with this boat, but I'm not very impressed either. Next time, I'll buy the Proline.