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Thread: Places to take 14' Zodiac in SouthCentral

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    Default Places to take 14' Zodiac in SouthCentral

    Thinking of buying a 14' Zodiac with 40HP Motor to fish and hunt with. Wondering where one could take it and places poeple would recommend. Anyone with experience with Zodiac? Rivers? Ocean? Hunting? Fishing?

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    I had a Mk II for many years and loved it. I think a 40 is way too much motor for that boat. I used a 15 and did great. Offshore from Whiskey Gulch and everywhere on the Kenai were my primary hangouts. I had friends with the same setup who used to go from Whittier to Montague. The Deshka would be a snap. You could go everywhere you'd want on the Su and Yentna if you know the rivers. Seward, Valdez, Lake Louise/Tyone....you can do them all easily in a Zody. Mine was easy to launch off the beaches even when the waves were breaking. (Advantage little light motor.)

    Your limiting factor will be gas capacity and tolerance for being in the weather.

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    Member AKRoadkill's Avatar
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    I had a 14 footer with a very tired old 40 Johnson. Never did take it faster than about 1/2 throttle. even with a 15 on it, mt buddy kept yelling at me to slow down! 15 should be plenty, but I think a 25-35 would be nicer for carrying heavier loads upriver. If it's a used boat that comes with a 40, I wouldn't shy away because the motor's too big, but if you're setting up a rig yourself, Might as well save some money, weiogh and gas and go with something a bit smaller. If you're planning on putting a jet on it, I'd go with a 40 head. I had a Merc 20 Jet (25 head) on a 12'6" Quicksilver inflatable--not enough motor once I started getting any weight in the boat, but fine with 2 guys and a day's worth of fishin' gear.

    Oh, back to your question...yep, you can take it about anywhere you'd take any other 14 foot boat with the same motor, and it's much better than a johnboat in the lakes and salt. Great for fly-in hunts, too (with a smaller motor).

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    Member breausaw's Avatar
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    I had a MK II 12.5 foot with the aluminum floor boards in early 80s. Bought new with a 25 but upgraded to 40; that’s what the transom was rated for. We used for water skiing and river running up in Fairbanks. Took it out on Resurrection bay a few times after moving back Seward, went all the way out to Rugged island.
    These are extremely stable boats and can really take rough seas and rough abuse. The one draw back is they’ll pound you to death in rough seas and chop. If you can handle it, these inflatables will get you just about anywhere and back.
    If the transom is rated for 40hp I wouldn’t hesitate to put one on it.

    Jay

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    ??? Weren't all the MkII Zodiaks 13'9"? Mine was. My Grand Raid model (MkIIgr) had aluminum floorboards. The old hylpalon boats with the communicating valves were my favorite. A friend still has and uses my old boat, and it's still a great boat today. It must be over 25 years old now. I never expected a little rubber boat to last that long.

    A friend had a MkIII at the same time. It was at or near 15'. It seemed to not be as rigid as a MkII, and you had to be careful not to get the bow up in the wind (like when jumping waves) because it wanted to fly. His didn't have as pronounced a vee as mine up the front, either.

    Another friend had an Achilles the same size as mine. Very nice boat. I never knew anybody with a bigger Achilles so I can't say whether they wallowed like the 15' Zodiak did.
    Last edited by Mr. Pid; 04-02-2007 at 17:13.

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    Default Inflatable boats

    Articfox:
    The inflatables have a great safety record. I've personally owned several and still have a small Zodiac. The biggest inflatable I had was a 15' Avon with a 35 hp Johnson. I had a full top, fishfinder, remote steering, Loran C, compass and swivel seats. It was a great boat and I took it from Homer out past Seldovia, Resurrection Bay to Rugged Island, out in PWS to Surprise Cove. Lots of lakes and rivers as well. I carried an extra prop (used it, too!), caught lots of fish and had a great time. I did Lake Louise, Susitna River, Knik River, you name it; we went there. Lots of fun, not much in the way of creature comforts and a rough ride sometimes. We've upgraded to a bigger boat, but I'd still like to have a bigger inflatable someday again. Enjoy your boating! Mike

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    Member breausaw's Avatar
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    [quote=Mr. Pid;85358]??? Weren't all the MkII Zodiaks 13'9"? Mine was.

    My MKII was a GT Compact, sorry forgot to mention that.

    Jay

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Pid View Post
    I had a Mk II for many years and loved it. I think a 40 is way too much motor for that boat. I used a 15 and did great. Offshore from Whiskey Gulch and everywhere on the Kenai were my primary hangouts. I had friends with the same setup who used to go from Whittier to Montague. The Deshka would be a snap. You could go everywhere you'd want on the Su and Yentna if you know the rivers. Seward, Valdez, Lake Louise/Tyone....you can do them all easily in a Zody. Mine was easy to launch off the beaches even when the waves were breaking. (Advantage little light motor.)

    Your limiting factor will be gas capacity and tolerance for being in the weather.
    How long did it take them to go from Whittier to Montaque? I didnt realize an inflatable with a prop would make a suitable choice for the Deska?
    Tennessee

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    I don't know how long it takes to get to Montague. The 26' and 28' hardtops the guys are using now aren't any faster on a good day than a Zody. How long do they take? The difference would be when the water gets snotty. Zodiacs are hard on you to run fast in rough water. We usually plowed up the wave and surfed down, as opposed to jumping them. If the waves were steep enough the boat would try to fold in the troughs. That's how we knew it was time to go in.

    The Deshka Landing makes the lower Deshka accessible enough that the can see fiberglass prop-driven ski boats on the river now. A Zody would have no problem at all. A good boat driver with knowledge of the rivers can take a prop boat just about anywhere a guy wants to go on the Su and Yentna Rivers, particularly after about the first week of June when the water comes up.

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    Member breausaw's Avatar
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    Default Put on a Skeg extension

    If you plan on doing river running with a prop have someone weld a skeg extension on your outboard, it will really same your prop and wont effect its performance if done right.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Articfox View Post
    Thinking of buying a 14' Zodiac with 40HP Motor to fish and hunt with. Wondering where one could take it and places poeple would recommend. Anyone with experience with Zodiac? Rivers? Ocean? Hunting? Fishing?
    My friend had a 16' and we took it everywhere. All the way out to Barrwell Island(sp) in Seward, Lake Lucille, Deska and Homer.
    Living the Alaskan Dream
    Gary Keller
    Anchorage, AK

  12. #12

    Default I have a 15.5 Achilles, w/a50 Merc

    Runs great. They will fold if you don't quarter the wave. I usually have mine too loaded bown with family and gear for it to fly.
    So far Hidden lake, a couple trips just outside Passage Canal and from Homer over to Seldovia and around there a bit.
    They are like a jeep on the water not fancy put dependable.
    Rob

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