Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Boat purchase question: canvas vs hardtop

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Juneau
    Posts
    169

    Default Boat purchase question: canvas vs hardtop

    I'm on a budget but am looking to make the jump from skiff to something to keep the freezing wind and rain off.

    The canvas covered boats like the North Rivers, Alumawelds, select Hewes seem more within my financial reach. Will I be happy with canvas, or should I just save up my money and spring for a hard top covered boat later down the road?

    P.S. I realize this post should be in the "Power boat" forum but that section seems dead and no one will view it. Plus I'd like input from you guys since you fish day in and day out and understand my needs.

  2. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Juneau, Alaska
    Posts
    284

    Default

    Hard-tops are nice, but I used canvas long before I got a hard-top. If you get the right combination and put a zippered see-through plastic curtain up at the back of your canvas cover you will stay dry and out of the wind.

  3. #3
    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage Alaska
    Posts
    4,836

    Default

    I have a softtop that was put in service in 2006. It was in good shape last year, but this year it is cracking - I will try to baby it through until next season, but it will have to be replaced - at least the top. Get the side and back windows too that zip/snap out. I am guessing that just the top part will be 1500 - 2000$ to have replaced. So you have to figure that into your budget.

    On a plus side - the soft top weighs less and might be a little more fuel efficient because of that.

  4. #4

    Default

    I like a lot of room for people to spread out when fishing, as well as ease of following big fish that are circling the boat. To each his own, but the trade-off for me in a hard top is having a great big boat with a tiny little back deck. For my own needs it would be a soft top, but except in spring and fall cold weather that soft top would be stacked in a corner of my garage for the rest of the summer. That's why the elves invented rain gear.

  5. #5
    Member alaskabliss's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Wasilla
    Posts
    1,419

    Default

    I have a hard top and would never go back. The comforts of side windows, roof mounted rod holders, ceiling mounted hand rails, gps mounted on the roof and extra storage compartments are just to good to not have again. I ran the soft top for years and it was a huge upgrade from the jon boat I ran. I don't see any fuel efficency issues with the added weight. I have had fishing hooks imbedd themselfs in a soft top but not a hard top. I do agree that if your soft top is down that it makes it easier to handle fish, i just never had a soft top down to enjoy that convience.
    Either way you will be happy but the hard top has more comforts.
    Ignorance is not Bliss, it's insanity

  6. #6
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Juneau
    Posts
    169

    Default

    Ya, I figured the hardtops were better. The delema I have is should I get a soft top I can afford now or a hard top I'll have to wait a year or two to afford.

    Still seems like a tough choice.

  7. #7
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    1,959

    Default

    $30,000 twin diesel,I would go hard top.Lots of gear with it. Great boat very safe and lot of room. PM for any other questions. I know the boat and its owner.

  8. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Anchor Point
    Posts
    162

    Default

    My boat has a hard top with canvas sides and eisenglass windows. I bought my boat in 1993. I am on my 3rd set of canvas and windows.
    In the long run a hard top with hard sides is the cheapest way to go.

  9. #9
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Juneau
    Posts
    169

    Default

    Thanks for the input guys. After weighing things out, I've decided to save up for another year or two and go for a hardtop boat. Skiff has served me well and caught lots of fish, so I'll just keep bundling up warm for now.

  10. #10
    Member BigBrown767's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Palmer, AK
    Posts
    243

    Default

    A hard top is easy to heat to when its a bit chilly out there!
    <)))><
    Live to fish, fish to live...

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •