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Thread: Searching for the right boat

  1. #1
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    Question Searching for the right boat

    I hope to purchase a used boat in the not to distant future and I am doing a little research. It's primary use would be Chitna for dipnetting and Valdez for silvers. I was thinking something in the 18' range with good fuel economy. What are the advantages between inboard and outboards? Engine size? What length should I consider? Do some brands stand up better than others? Any advice would be appreciated.

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  2. #2
    Member rimfirematt's Avatar
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    Id get a 18 foot hewscraft searunner with around a 50-70 horse motor, preferably a 4 stroke. Ive seen these for around 10K pretty frequently. This should be a good boat for a crew of 3 and gear. THere should be alot of feedback on this boat. THere seems to be alot of them around.

    If your budget is less than 10K than I think if you keep it aluminum, ouboard and have a top of some sort youll do fine. Youll probably also want to keep it a semi-v as opposed to a flat bottom.

    I like outboards cause they are easy to work on, and also seem to be alot less maintence. As far as brand of outboard to look for, I wouldnt dwell on that too much. They all seem to be pretty good when maintained well. Just look for a good clean looking motor that hasnt had a bunch of stuff replaced on it.

    I usually view a boat or motor that is advertised as having this thing new or that thing new as maybe a bad sign. Most of this stuff is designed to take a good beating and when properly cared for should last pretty much forever.

    Oh yeah, since your looking for a used boat, try to find one with a radio, bilge, anchor, rope, safety stuff ect that comes with the boat. THis stuff purchased new is easily over 1000 bucks and youll need it.

  3. #3
    Member spoiled one's Avatar
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    The recommendation by rimfirematt is a good one. Also look at the bayrunners as well as the klamaths. I would stick with aluminum with an outboard for what you want to do. There was a bayrunner in the size range you are looking for on craigslist earlier this week. You might want to take a peak. Good luck in your search.
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  4. #4
    Member Sterlingmike's Avatar
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    Default Hewescraft 18

    As you can see, I'm partial to the Hewescraft Searunner. I've owned an 18' and a 17' and enjoyed them both. The only reason I'm still running a 35hp Suzuki is because I was equipped for both the Kenai and the bays. I'm also looking to upgrade to a 4 stroke since I'm now restricted on the Kenai. If you decide on a searunner, get one with a closed bow, not the open bow. Mine is closed and I've been caught in some bad water with it and no water in the boat from waves. Very sturdy, seaworthy boats as I'm sure the Klamaths and Bayrunners are. Aluminum boat for sure.......

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    Member M Gho's Avatar
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    Default another thought

    If you know anyone that participates in the activities you want to get into, hitch a ride and ask questions. One thing I learned is that there are so many styles and sizes because everyone uses them for so many different things. Kind of vague. I have been really pleased with my Wooldridge (the one listed for sale on this site ) for the Sound ; Cordova to Whittier & the Interior rivers ; Fbks down the Yukon, Nowitna and below Galena. I have also been happy with my 16 foot Lund for short day trips on the lakes. The most recent fun I've had is my beater 18' flatbottem with a 25hp Go-Devil. However, each boat has its purpose. My old race boat "Old Glory" and another boat I raced in " Hughes Blues " couldn't carry my family on long trips. Boats to me are like shoes to a women - you can't have too many !! Even after you get a boat, there seems to be just one more thing to add...... Another option is to settle for anything and just make do. Growing up with beater boats and old Indian motors, I consented to doing a lot of fixing and floating - each to his own. Whatever it takes to get out - just get out and enjoy each adventure.

  6. #6

    Default Copper???

    As an owner of an 18' Bayrunner (love it) and a Harbercraft 18' jet boat my only advice would be that I don't know if I could imagine taking the prop bayrunner (or a prop Hewes searunner for that matter) on the Copper for dipnetting.

    Just about scared the pants off me in my Jet on that river a couple years ago.....but that's another story. In any case, others might have different opinions but at least when I was there I think the prop would have been dinged to heck on that very serious river...

    One idea might be to get both a jet and prop lower unit for the boat.....but then you probably need a jackplate to raise and lower the motor.

    Definitely look for the 4 stroke motor, as others have said.

  7. #7
    Member wolfkiller's Avatar
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    Default I agree on most

    of the boat choices. But not on the 4 stroke. I had a Honda on my last boat then upgradedto a E-tec. The only other moter I considered was the Merc. Both are direct injected 2 strokes. The E-Tec was considerably quiter than the merc. The honda is a tad quiter than the E-tec but about 100lbs heavier.
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  8. #8
    Member alaskanmoosehunter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bayrunner View Post
    As an owner of an 18' Bayrunner (love it) and a Harbercraft 18' jet boat my only advice would be that I don't know if I could imagine taking the prop bayrunner (or a prop Hewes searunner for that matter) on the Copper for dipnetting.

    Just about scared the pants off me in my Jet on that river a couple years ago.....but that's another story. In any case, others might have different opinions but at least when I was there I think the prop would have been dinged to heck on that very serious river...

    One idea might be to get both a jet and prop lower unit for the boat.....but then you probably need a jackplate to raise and lower the motor.

    Definitely look for the 4 stroke motor, as others have said.
    I would have to agree...If you plan on going to chitna I would defiently have a jet lower unit. I would even recommend it more now that you can not put boats in at O'Brian Creek. Up by the bridge down to O'brian it can get really shallow, really quick.

    I think a Klamath bayrunner with a jet unit/prop unit would be a good all around boat.
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