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Thread: Pro & Cons of Alloy vs. Glass Boats

  1. #1

    Default PWS jigs

    Its winter and tackle boxes are out for replenishing. I only have a few seasons in the salt and am looking for jigs or rigs for rockfish or the like out in PWS. Anyone willing to share? Thanks!

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    My favorite all around jig is the 2-1/4-oz Point Wilson Dart, Candlefish in Blue/Nickle color.
    When the tides are right this jig will catch fish.

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Default Thread: Pro & Cons of Alloy vs. Glass Boats

    OK, I'll bite. What does the title of this thread have to do with the subject of this thread?

    Seems a person fishing for advice about jigs and rigs, would be better served to chum with a title more representative of the subject. Then again, you did get one solid bite in less than an hour, using a title about boats as bait for a question about jigs... Only goes to prove, I suppose, that fisherman aren't that hard to catch. Apparently, they'll strike at just about anything.
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    I'll ignore his question about jigs and rigs and answer the question that heads the thread:

    If you're beaching a boat much or running around ice, it's aluminum all the way. Spent too many hours chunking waterlogged foam out of cracked or holed glass hulls. The waterlogged foam weighs a ton, and the only solution is to get it out of there, then restore the glass hull. If you're not beaching a boat or running around ice, then glass is okay.

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    Quote Originally Posted by iofthetaiga View Post
    OK, I'll bite. What does the title of this thread have to do with the subject of this thread?

    Seems a person fishing for advice about jigs and rigs, would be better served to chum with a title more representative of the subject. Then again, you did get one solid bite in less than an hour, using a title about boats as bait for a question about jigs... Only goes to prove, I suppose, that fisherman aren't that hard to catch. Apparently, they'll strike at just about anything.
    LOL! I was going to ask the same question, but figured someone would tell me I was being argumentative or something.

    If you are indeed wondering about the pros and cons of aluminum vs. glass, I'd have to totally agree with BrownBear on this one. Aluminum is a lot more "forgiving" when it comes to hitting things like logs that might be hidden in rough water, beaching if necessary, pushing through ice jammed harbors (like we had in Homer just a few days ago) and takes a lot less maintenance in the long run. Glass has a gel coat that will deteriorate over time and will have to be re-done.
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    Aluminum is colder, louder, more expensive and will not likely cut waves and neatly as glass due to the inherent difficulties of molding aluminum like you can glass.
    Glass is more fragile, (as was stated) higher maintenance, stains easily, retains less value down the road, is often heavier, and more difficult to repair/add goodies onto.

    I was going through the same thing this spring...... in the end I got a 2284 Raider (Aluminum). It was a big investment, but with what folks are getting (or trying to) for used aluminum boats, it should hold value (not that I have any intention of selling my baby). I looked at glass boats but they want a mint for them new, they retain no value, and the used "project" boats you find are exactly that.....lots of maintenace and nickle and diming that you won't have to the same degree with aluminum. Both are holes in the water into which you throw 100 dollar bills, but my aluminum doesn't take up all my weekends farting around shining, cleaning and repairing it either.

    For me it came down to this, I live in Juneau, am surrounded by water (potentially snotty water, and often full of Taku logs), I can potentially use it year round, I want to be able to touch shore to go hunting or camping, I don't like putsy maintenance or the idea of following someone around with a scrubbrush so the blood doesn't stain the deck, my wife loves going out on the boat.....oh, and I like to fish.....A LOT.....so the extra expense meant little to me when I could just jump in and go.

    For me, it's what I do, for others that may hit it for 3-4 weekends a year.....find a glass boat that someone loved well, steal it because older glass isn't worth much, and go out and enjoy it. If this is something you wish to use for years and years and years and wish to do it for as many weekends as money, life and weather allows......get aluminum.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Catch It View Post
    I looked at glass boats but they want a mint for them new, they retain no value, and the used "project" boats you find are exactly that.....lots of maintenace and nickle and diming that you won't have to the same degree with aluminum. Both are holes in the water into which you throw 100 dollar bills, but my aluminum doesn't take up all my weekends farting around shining, cleaning and repairing it either.

    For me, it's what I do, for others that may hit it for 3-4 weekends a year.....find a glass boat that someone loved well, steal it because older glass isn't worth much, and go out and enjoy it. If this is something you wish to use for years and years and years and wish to do it for as many weekends as money, life and weather allows......get aluminum.
    Not sure where you are shopping but my 2005 SeaSport was appraised last summer for almost what I paid for it in 2005. How is that for retaining no value? Yes it takes some maintence, I wash the blood off it when we are done fishing. And she rides smooth as glass.

    I am not saying metal is better than glass or vice versa. That is up to each to decide for themself. I am saying your arguements about glass not holding it's value is totally off base.

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    If you look at what a 10 year old, 24 foot Aluminum boat goes for vs buying one just like it today.......then do the same with a comparable glass boat....the glass will lose out hands down for retained value.

    What I've found may not hold true for the bigger boats, but for the 18-22 foot crowd, there are lots of generally inexpensive glass boats to be had out there, and many are less than 10 years old. Try to wrestle a hard top, 5-6 year old 22ft Hewescraft or NorthRiver off of someone for much less than you can buy one new and you are lucky man.

    And no matter the appraisal, next you need someone to actually buy for that price

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    I'll answer the jig question if you find rockfish they will bite on pretty much anything, they are some of the easiest fish to catch,I like 1 ounce jigs with owner 5/0 hooks and 4"-5" white or green tubes with light tackle. As far as the pro's and con's of boat hulls, that opens up a big controversy, it all depends on what your using it for, if I was a charter operator I would have an alloy but for a long range cruising, exploring and fishing comfortably I went with glass.
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    So the truth behind the thread title is a prefect example of cabin fever confusion already. I was reading through the power boat forum and was going to post the alloy vs. glass boat question there, then somehow began reading the saltwater fishing forum thinking of my jigs or lack of and posted that question with my original title. Sorry for the confusion, but it has worked out very well, I've got answers to both questions in one fail swoop! Thanks for everyone's answers.

    As for my boat question, I'm eyeing glass for the comfort, but fighting the urge to go alloy for durability. If you could tell I guess I'm easily confused! I'll repost in power boats forum to continue to get opinions.

    Thinking of jigs, do any of you run bait such herring stupid or the like in addition to your jigs?

    muttley, I can call ya argumentative if it makes you feel more at home! Just kidding, no matter what said I appreciate any advise!

    redleader is that a 27 pilot house? Been eyeing a few for sale in the Seattle area. I really enjoy there look and cabin space. You ever bonk your head going in the cabin?
    Thanks for understanding everyone!!!

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mad_yaker View Post
    Thinking of jigs, do any of you run bait such herring stupid or the like in addition to your jigs?
    Yeah, I often add bait or scent to my jigs. Who you callin' stupid?
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    For halibut adding bait makes a difference,for rock fish and lingcod bait doesn't matter, my boat is a 30' pilothouse and no I've never bonked my head, plenty of head room, that is my long range boat, I also have a 22' alloy for close in fishing and understand the advantages of alloy. Good luck with the cabin fever.

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    Ok, I'll respond to one side of this dual headed thread - Aluminum vs. fiberglass. It is personal a personal choice. Any inherent limitation of the base material can be taken care of in the design. There are some pretty tough fiberglass boats out there, such as Deltas and Nordhavens that are plenty tough. As for aluminum being cold and sweating, mine is plenty warm and inviting, and surprisingly tough. Here is an interior shot.



    I have to admit though, when you step on that aluminum deck barefoot when it is 30 degrees, it sucks all of the heat out of your foot in a second.
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    Being from the eastern coast I'm a fan of glass. I've never rode on an aluminum boat that will run with mine as nicely in seas. Yes, glass is heavier and not a fuel efficient, but if built right, rides like a caddy. Now if you're a beach hunter who doesn't fish in heavy seas, AL is the way to go IMO. I run a deep vee NC style sport fisher (Carolina Classic) and it is heavy, at 25' I weigh 8500lbs empty off the trailer (comparison the 26 Opsrey is 6K). Hull is 2" of glass, no wood core so she rides like no other and is dry due to the NC flare. But I do sacrifice some when drifting/at anchor as the deep vee makes her a little tender, but man the ride getting there is nice, and being diesel powered, at 25kts I burn only 10gph. If I had to do it again and I will if I have the money, the 28' Carolina Classic due to the 10'6" beam. And I think a good clean glass boat that is kept clean, man is it sexy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by iofthetaiga View Post
    Yeah, I often add bait or scent to my jigs. Who you callin' stupid?
    LOL! Stuipd must have been the apple autocorrect for Squid. I am going to never post again via ipad, its been nothing but a train wreck.

    Wow! jrogers, thats a beautiful interior! From that shot I would never have know that was a alloy boat.

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    You'll have to work pretty hard to find a jig a rockfish won't take rather then having to sort through the box for the right jig. I think I've landed rockfish on just about everything from 2 oz to 24 oz on darts, crippled herring, buzz bombs, spoons, diamond jigs, butterfly jigs, lead heads with grub tails and scampi tails, etc., and pretty much every color and combination. If you have a jig that will catch a salmon, it'll catch a rockfish, a jig for a halibut, will catch a rockfish, jig for a ling, will catch a rockfish. If it's heavy enough to get down and has some action, it'll catch a rock fish. You might not even be targeting rockfish when you catch a rockfish.

    More important than what is on the end of the line is spending time looking at the charts, and burning gas to find the rockpiles that seem to conisistantly produce fish. Not every spot you wet a line will produce a rockfish.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Catch It View Post
    If you look at what a 10 year old, 24 foot Aluminum boat goes for vs buying one just like it today.......then do the same with a comparable glass boat....the glass will lose out hands down for retained value.

    What I've found may not hold true for the bigger boats, but for the 18-22 foot crowd, there are lots of generally inexpensive glass boats to be had out there, and many are less than 10 years old. Try to wrestle a hard top, 5-6 year old 22ft Hewescraft or NorthRiver off of someone for much less than you can buy one new and you are lucky man.

    And no matter the appraisal, next you need someone to actually buy for that price
    In 2010 I purchased a 2006 Thunderjet aluminum boat that was in pristine condition loaded with options, kicker, Garmin TR1 remote controlled kicker controls, etc for about half of what it cost new. Dealer had it for sale for 4 months before I bought it.
    I am not against aluminum as if I get another big boat plan on purchasing a Sea Wolf. But the resale value is based upon the boat and it's features, not what it is made of.

  18. #18

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    I've run a 19' Pacific, 24' ACB, 26' Northriver, 27' Almar, 28' Rivers Wild, and a 30' Custom walkaround over the last 12 years.. All alumimum, for about 800-1200 trips to the outer W coast of Prince of Wales. I've been around the block with Aluminums.

    Now I'm looking to upgrade my personal boat for my growing family. I'm really leaning towards a 24' Seasport or a 26' Osprey.

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    This is an interesting topic.

    I've always had fiberglass ocean boats, and have boated out of Whittier, and now Seward for many years. Those that have walked the docks in Whittier have seen my boats, IE American Dream, Nauti Gal, Taz.

    What I've noticed having run side by side with similar sized Alumanium boats is that they tend to bounce more in the waves. This could be because they are lighter, it could be because of allot of things but they do bounce more, allot more.

    What I've also seen is that in the 28' and smaller class the alumanium boats I've seen seem to have a much shallower hull. What this means is that they have lower freeboard and often the deck is below the water line. These two things create in my opinion a safety situation in a big sea. you should never have to rely on bilge pumps to clear the deck on an ocean going boat. Because of this shallow hull design there is also a engine hump to work around if you have an I/O.

    Another challenge I've seen that is again based on the shallow hull is cabin space. There just isn't much cabin on an Alumanium boat in the 28' and smaller class.

    Now take a fiberglass cabin cruiser in that same size. What you'll get is a very deep hull with lots of freeboard and a deck that is above the waterline. You'll get a engine room that is below deck with no hump. You'll get a real lower level on the boat that can house a real stateroom, head, nice vee berth and a good size galley.

    What you'll loose is efficiency. My old 8,000 pound (factory dry) 28' cabin cruiser cruised at 27 knots with a Mercruiser 496 engine at 375 HP. To do this cost me 1.0 NMPG. My old 5,700 pound 24' cabin cruiser with a Mercruiser 5.7 cruised at 24 knots and got 1.5 NMPG.

    I have no issues with Alumanium as a construction material. I have seen some 30' Alumanium boats out of Whittier that looked like they had a very deep hull as well. although they are far out numbered by boats that look kinda like jet boats with a more pointy hull.

    Build a deep hull form Alumanium boat with a sealed above the water line deck and a cabin that provides the comforts wives expect from that large of an investment and you'll have a very nice boat indeed.

    As far as the strength of a fiberglass vs Alumanium hull its a non issue. I don't care what the internet myths are. Neither boat is going to fall apart from hitting a log. Running aground can open up an alumanium boat just as quickly as a fiberglass one.

    The argument for beaching is also bunk for the most part. Get a skiff, and don't run your boat aground. Oceans are not like rivers where you park on a sand bar. Our tides change so quickly and move so much I cannot imagine beaching an ocean going boat. Again, thats what a skiff is for.

    Oh, and the argument that you can beach your boat in bad weather is bunk as well. Beach any boat with big waves breaking and you'll have an insurance claim on your hands. In bad weather anchor in a nice quite cove and wait it out.

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    I do boat repair and boat paiting here in Homer. The three best built Alumamium boats are Sea Wolf, BayWeld and Glacier Craft. Any of the three will run over $200,000 for boat over 28ft and a used 35ft Sea wolf sold for over $300,000. I can buy a 35ft Bertram with a charter permit for $150,000 with new diesels in it and still have $150,000 left over for fuel

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