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Thread: hewes, duck, raider, north river?

  1. #1
    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    Default hewes, duck, raider, north river?

    Been goofin' off looking at boats in the 26-28' range, cuddy with twins. got a big family and looking for something we'd all fit in. but dang, whats the difference in all these boats? i'm not up on all the gadgets and chimes and deadrise and what nots. can you guys tell me if the price differences in these boats is worth it and what boat would be better in the long haul. both on the water and to own for years. spending six figures i wanna at least have a guess at what i'm doing! lol
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    Member Rob B's Avatar
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    Welcome to the club of break out another thousand. (Boat) If i were looking at those boats, i'd rank them Hewescraft, Raider, Norther River then Duckworth being the best. They are all great boats, just the finish work gets better with each boat. And the price goes up too. A good used Wooldridge Supersport Pilothouse would be the best option, but they are very hard to come by. Another very nice looking boat for the money is the new Riverhawk. Dewey's has one in the lot and it's played out really nice. Might be worth checking out. Either way, most of the bigger boats all have close to the same dead rise and ride really well in the big water. Some better than others but close to the same. Weight, ride, length, creature comforts are all directly related to price. The heavier the boat "North River" the better the ride in some respects. But it gets more expensive on your trips. It's a balancing game i guess. Hewescraft is a great boat. Laid out nice but the finish work just isn't there compared to others. Weldcraft is close to the same boat, but has abetter finish. (nicer welds) Raider is a great boat, just laid out weird in my opinion. Both North River are great boats. Nice heavy very seaworthy boats that will last you for years. Hey any boat will last you years, but once you start looking and climbing anthem you will see the quality differences. Once other thing that bugs me is the height or lack of when it comes to the sides of the fishing deck. One boat that has very short sides is the Kingfisher. i like the higher sides in my Hewescraft Make me feel safer when fishing crap weather. Either way there are lots of great boats out there. Just take your time and climb around every boat you cans and buy once. It's very hard to do and most of us get 2 foot'itis, but it can be prevented with patience.....
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  3. #3
    Member spoiled one's Avatar
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    I agree with what Rob says. Another thing to consider is the beam. You will be hard pressed to fit all of your clan in an 8 foot 6 beam. Mine is 30x10 and all 4 of us can fit comfortably in the cuddy. That extra beam is real nice.
    Spending my kids' inheritance with them, one adventure at a time.

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    As has been said many, many times, there is no perfect boat and each one comes with trade-offs so for me, I had to rank what was most important and then work my way down the list. I wanted aluminum so I started there. I'm a very happy 28 Duckworth owner and have no regrets, but I had to settle. For example, I did not want to deal with "oversized" trailering permits so I knew I would stay at 8'6". It's quite remarkable how much more space there is in cabins of boats with more beam, even 9'4" boats like the 28 NR. We wanted a marine head but I didn't want to loose fishing space on the back deck (cockpit) so we ended up in a 28 footer. Kingfishers' have a nice interior (has an RV feel) but like others, I prefer taller gunnels. I also don't care for ducking down to enter the cabin. Weight, dead rise, and deeper "v" generally all add to a smoother ride, as does overall boat length, including extended transom. These are all things to take note of. Costs from cookie cutter "production boats", to semi custom, to heavy aluminum are quite dramatic but usually, you get what you pay for. Finally, for me, boats are works of art and I really have strong feelings about the "lines of a boat." In other words, for me, looks matter too! Not everyone cares too much about the "lines" and that's ok, it's just personal preference. You really need to crawl around as many different boats that you are considering. Just moving through the spaces, hatches, cabins, v-births, transoms, stern to bow, will give you a feel of how it might fit your family. Most of us like to talk about our boats, tell you about lessons learned, and share our opinions. Finally, if you are going to buy new, try to learn about the builder/factory. I went to the factory and got a tour. I've talked to other builders too (the Wooldrige family was awesome) but do your research. As a general rule, fiberglass boats might cost less, can feel "warmer", and might even be more quiet however they might not be the boat you want if you want to let it go dry on a beach or nose up to a rocky shoreline to kick the kids off on the beach. Budget is probably your biggest driver in your search, as is the decesion between new or used. The good news is, there are a ton of options out there so make a list of your "must haves, should haves, and nice to haves", set your budget, and start hunting. For me, that was a big part of the fun!

  5. #5

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    I certainly agree any boat is a trade off in some way or another. I looked at, climbed under, over and inside quite a few boats over several years. Each time getting closer to narrowing the options. For me it was alloy, cuddy, twins, 26-28', head, galley, cost, etc.. My dream boat was a 28' SeaWolf. I ended up with a Hewes. The changes Hewes made to the Pacific Cruiser to end up with the Pacific Explorer appealed to me. What I did see when I got down and looked at the layout and structure of the boat was opportunity. The opportunity to easily modify the boat, which I have. The biggest trade off I made was beam. I have an 8'6" wide boat that is now really comfortable for 2-3 people, useable for 4, eight inches more width and it would be comfortable for 4 people. The 30" I added to length, the transom box extension, the second fuel tank, roof extension, full camper back and numerous changes to the interior have made it "my" boat. I know it inside and out. This is a really positive thing when your out for ten days and 60-100 miles from port. After 6 years I feel pretty comfortable, I have a decent supply of parts, pieces and tools. I know what to expect from the boat in most conditions. I'm not at all sorry with the choice I made, even with all the changes I've made I saved thousands. I got to intimately know the boat, which is part of the enjoyment of owning the boat. I'd still trade the 8" of beam for all the other positive things I ended up with.

    I have been looking at how I could modify the boat's beam by changing the reverse chines from a tack on addition to an integral part of the hull and gain 8-10" of beam, but then I'd need a permit to haul it, dang another trade off.....

  6. #6
    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    Great feedback. I know there is no magic boat that will fit everything I would want. But getting familiar with different styles and brands I figured would be a good start. I just need to figure out if the extra price tag is worth the extra comforts or design. I'm obviously leaning at hewescraft because they are easier to come by and more affordable. Not knowing how much time I will get on the water I would hate to go all in and hardly ever use it.
    I have five kids now, by the time I could afford a bigger boat two of them should be graduated and hopefully...hopefully outa the house!!
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  7. #7
    Member LazyCoho's Avatar
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    After 5+ years of research and climbing all over all kinds of boats. I went with a 24ft Raider i love the simplicity of the boat, layout and look was what got me over Hewescraft and the price. There are for sure better finished boats.. ones with painted hulls, perfect welds and fancier interior finishes (Wooldridge,Duckworth) this however didn't matter to me it is a tool that i use the **** out of. There is A LOT of marketing involved in the boat industry and they are all very similar other then price. I saved 30k plus going with Raider and got a lot of boat for the money.
    As others have said you need to know how you will use the boat..for me i needed something that i could launch by myself, that would be trailered after every use, that would be lightweight and very economical, that i could still beach to kick the kids off, a self bailing deck and some miner customizations that the other companies would not do. I use mine in the inside waters and do not plan on heading to far offshore but could easy if the weather was right and i needed to be able to afford it!!!

    I would not put NR in the same class as the Hewes, Raider or Duckworth since it is roughly 1000lbs heavier then those boats and starts to get up in the class of the heavier hull boats compared to the lighter "production boats". While i really like the customization of Wooldridge and their history I could not see myself paying that much extra for the name. In the end i have never heard of any of the boats you have listed falling apart and sinking due to "quality"

    Good luck on your search and i have a thread that i started on my Raider 2484.
    "stop screaming at me, I'm scared too!"
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    Member tlingitwarrior's Avatar
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    When you get real serious, I'd strongly recommend a trip to Seattle in January for the boat show. Crawl all round a bunch of different boats.
    In 1492 Native Americans discovered Columbus lost at sea
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  9. #9
    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    That's a good idea! Will that make me spend more money on cooler stuff?!
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  10. #10
    Member tlingitwarrior's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BRWNBR View Post
    That's a good idea! Will that make me spend more money on cooler stuff?!
    You will always be spending money on cooler stuff once you buy an ocean boat. Buying the boat is the cheapest part of the deal
    In 1492 Native Americans discovered Columbus lost at sea
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  11. #11
    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    Lol ya I could see that! Like putting it in the water and pushing the throttle forward....
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  12. #12
    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
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    Ya - just ordered most of the aluminum so that I can mount my shrimp pot puller. $473.00. Also ordered the stainless steel gas lift arm $108.00. Now just the stainless bolts and the uhmw and then I can start welding.

    The boat show in Portland is pretty good too. Seattle is probably bigger/more boats not sure. Personally I didn't like the layout of the raider that I looked at as much as the hewes - but I am not worried about finishes much.

  13. #13

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    Bull
    what kind of pot puller did you go with and what is a gas lifting arm?

  14. #14
    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
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    Off topic...sorry. Electrodyne. It is a gas strut that will pick up the davit arm.

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    If you want to know about how well a boat is built ask if they will make you one with no paint on the outside of it. The only one I have seen that will do that is North River. No outside paint is the best way to go. I hate to say that, because I paint boats. If you do paint a boat prep is 90% of the job. Best of luck and good fishing to all!

  16. #16

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    BULL. I would like to see photos of your davit pot puller project if you have time at some point in your build. I will be at that point with my project in a month or two. I still have no clue what a gas strut lifting arm is but I will wait for a picture to understand.
    MGH55- Amen to a NO PAINT boat!!!!!

  17. #17
    Member JR2's Avatar
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    Wait until you buy what you thought was the perfect boat and find out you really think this other one is more your style.. Or if only it was two feet longer... Its a sickness and I love it. If you want to crawl around a kingfisher mine is in Eagle River and I can fire up the Espar for you.
    2007 Kingfisher 2825 - Stor Fisk

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  18. #18
    Member sisusuomi's Avatar
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    I looked at boats for a few years and finally did like you bought the Raider 2284 extended transom. It is usually just my wife, Teddy (the lab) and myself fishing. The Raider is built well handles the rough better than we do. We got caught with our guard down this summer by not paying attention to what was coming down North Lynn Cannel into South Lynn. We were in 6-7ft seas, me handling all the gear and getting things tied down ASAP while Patti handled the boat. What normally would take us 10-15 minutes to get to Amalga Harbor took nearly an hour...and lots of nervous tension. Like I said the boat design did well in the conditions we were in and we have no regrets buying it after than experience.
    Quote Originally Posted by LazyCoho View Post
    After 5+ years of research and climbing all over all kinds of boats. I went with a 24ft Raider i love the simplicity of the boat, layout and look was what got me over Hewescraft and the price. There are for sure better finished boats.. ones with painted hulls, perfect welds and fancier interior finishes (Wooldridge,Duckworth) this however didn't matter to me it is a tool that i use the **** out of. There is A LOT of marketing involved in the boat industry and they are all very similar other then price. I saved 30k plus going with Raider and got a lot of boat for the money.
    As others have said you need to know how you will use the boat..for me i needed something that i could launch by myself, that would be trailered after every use, that would be lightweight and very economical, that i could still beach to kick the kids off, a self bailing deck and some miner customizations that the other companies would not do. I use mine in the inside waters and do not plan on heading to far offshore but could easy if the weather was right and i needed to be able to afford it!!!

    I would not put NR in the same class as the Hewes, Raider or Duckworth since it is roughly 1000lbs heavier then those boats and starts to get up in the class of the heavier hull boats compared to the lighter "production boats". While i really like the customization of Wooldridge and their history I could not see myself paying that much extra for the name. In the end i have never heard of any of the boats you have listed falling apart and sinking due to "quality"

    Good luck on your search and i have a thread that i started on my Raider 2484.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Predator Control View Post
    Bull
    what kind of pot puller did you go with and what is a gas lifting arm?
    When your ready for pot haulers please let me know or stop by my booth at either the Anchorage or Fairbanks sportmans/outdoors shows this spring.

    Alaska Shrimp Pots

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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Predator Control View Post
    BULL. I would like to see photos of your davit pot puller project if you have time at some point in your build. I will be at that point with my project in a month or two. I still have no clue what a gas strut lifting arm is but I will wait for a picture to understand.
    MGH55- Amen to a NO PAINT boat!!!!!
    I think he is going to build a davit similar to this one.I have lots of pictures of installs of my Electra Dyne haulers on many different boats.ED crane davit.jpgED crane hauler 2.jpg

    Alaska Shrimp Pots

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