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Thread: Help me decide on a river boat...

  1. #1

    Default Help me decide on a river boat...

    Hi everyone...

    I was in the Northway mall today (boat show) and was looking at what could be my first boat. I've been waiting to get one and finally decided to pick one up.


    I'm looking at a 17' or 18' boat with a 50 hp 4 stroke motor. I'm looking at myself and 3 passengers while fishing and plan to fish a number of rivers with the Kenai being the most likely fishing spot. Don't ask me the other rivers guys...I'm relying on my father's knowledge...I've used hip waders and river banks for years.

    I'm not a boater and this is my first...well second boat (if a paddle boat counts). I'm wanting to have enough boat to hunt with, etc. but also want to be sure that I will be able to get up on step down on the Kenai. I fished it with a smaller boat and weak motor...it wasn't fun.

    I'm looking at about $15 K to $18 K for a flat bottom package with a trailer; any more than that is out of my desired price range.

    Any suggestions? Any help or comments on what I should stay away from or move towards would be recommended. I both hunt and fish...unfortunatly I just can't recall the name of the boat that I saw today.

    Thanks
    Last edited by lastchance2pb4ugo; 01-26-2007 at 01:35. Reason: duplicate post, deleted.

  2. #2
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    Default

    Which G-III model I wanted and which Yamaha options I wanted would be the only decisions I'd have to make. (Dewey's)

  3. #3
    Member SEEBLAZE's Avatar
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    Smile I found something of intrest

    lastchance2pb4ugo,

    Check out http://anchorage.craigslist.org/boa/268464271.html.

    If you want a used 2006, here is the boat you may be looking for maybe? Worth checking out. I like to buy it but just bought a 20' in fall.

  4. #4

    Default Riverboat

    The Boat shop in Fairbanks has a demo 20' X 48" Alweld they will sell for under $4000.00. They will put a trailer with it for about $1500 more. You can get a 35 hp GoDevil Surface Drive to put on it for about $5200.00.
    http://home.gci.net/~godevilalaska/
    It looks like that would come in under budget.

  5. #5
    Member akrstabout's Avatar
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    Default

    for your first boat buy used. you will run so much crap through it and tear it up anyway. why damage a new boat when you can beat up an older one and learn the rivers for a summer or two then get your nice, new fancy boat. unless you have driven someone elses and have experience that is what i would do. it is easy to mess up a good motor fast, seen it happen with other people. just think it through. those are nice looking boats though. next weekend is going to be another boat show. might want to wait till then. dewies will still give boat show prices through early spring, they have in the past anyways. I personally think a 17 footer with 50 horse is under powered. seen some that size with a 115. you will figure it out. just takes time. don't do a impulse buy. take your time, think it through.

  6. #6

    Default

    Been there, done that lastchance,
    We bought a used Almar lite (16") with 35 Evinrude about 8 yrs ago, thought it'd be the "everything" boat; no such thing! Either you compromise to fish the kenai, or you don't. The Almar was barely adequate on the river, and good at nothing, it really needed a 75 horse to get up & move! Anyway, we sold it last year and a friend found us a used 16' Xtreme jonboat w/25 Yamaha 4 stroke; this is what we needed for the river! Please spare yourself and follow the advice already given; buy a used rig (plenty around if you look) and MAKE SURE whatever you get will plane ON THE KENAI with the load you want to carry (also count on about 100 lbs of extra crap you will carry along, even though you might think that won't happen); don't believe what any salesperson will tell you. We got lucky to sell our rig for close to what we had in it, and really scored on the Xtreme.
    Jim

  7. #7

    Default

    I have thought about the used boat option...I just don't want to get someone else's junk motor - you just can't tell if it was abused. Most everyone in here talks about how first year boats are abused due to lack of boating knowledge...I'd rather invest some money into something that I know works fine and be cautious on the waters.

    I'm thinking about a G3 (18' with 50HP) to fish the kenai but also use on other rivers. I know that I'll also need a jet drive to go in more shallow waters like the little sue, etc, etc. Dewys told me that the state won't allow a 60HP engine to be tuned down to a 35HP engine so it looks like the Kenai is limited to a 50HP engine. This leaves me with the ultimate decision...to fish or not fish the Kenai.

    I'll head out and look into some used boats as suggested...I just hate to buy something that has been abused - even if it looks taken care of.

    Is Mr. Pid a Dewy's rep?

  8. #8
    Member tsh's Avatar
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    Default

    I have a G-3 1860 {18ft x 60in} with a Yamaha 40hp-4 stroke Jet,tiller drive.
    It has a wide front casting deck, with only an operators bench, lots of room for cargo. I use lawn chairs for seats if more than one other fisherman is along, we get a few laughs, but it works well and gives you options for placement. Bring the lounger and an afternoon nap is a must.

    It is a great Deshka/Kenai Boat

    If I had it to do over again I would go with the 50hp.

    I bought it at Dewey's 4 years ago.
    A little under $10,000 boat/motor/trailer

  9. #9
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    Hi Guys, great forums..my fist post was fixing to be about the same question as this, with the difference being it's main use will be on the gulkana, with some use on the salcha/chena. I'll be alone mainly, with an occasional passenger. Will the suggestions already made here also work for these 3 rivers? (Never seen the Kenai to compare)
    thanks for any help.
    Steve

  10. #10
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    I'm not a Dewey's rep. I have a couple of G-III boats. The next time I need a boat I'll buy another one. In fact I'd buy a G-III Guide Model 18' with a 50 (powerhead) Yamaha jet. A friend has one. Very nice.

  11. #11
    Member AKBassking's Avatar
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    Default First Boat

    I have had several flats from 18 to 20 ft, with 80 to 115. I now have a 1995 Wooldridge 20ft Xtra plus. It had a 200 HP Eveinrude w/jet. It finally wore out and I put a new 2005 Eveinrude 250HP w/ a jet. Yes it is not a Keni boat. I gave that up a long time ago when they made the original HP restrictions. In my opinion out-of-state guides have taken over the Keni and have driven it into the ground. It's only a tourist trap now.

    I fish both ocean and rivers and my boat seems to be a fair comprimise. I can fish for flat fish out of Anchor Point or Whittier, then go to the Deshka or Lake creek the next day. I have a honda 20HP four stroke, radios and a Lowrance GPS and Humingbird fish finder.

    My point is that it has taken me about 8 yers to get my boat where I want it to be. (A black hole which to throw my money down!). I guess it all depends on what type of fishing and the water you want to fish is going to be.

    Good Luck!

  12. #12

    Default

    After much consideration I bought a used boat. (2006 18' Yamaha G3 Jon boat with a 2006 Yamaha 90 horse [jet drive] four stroke motor, 30 gal. fuel tank, and a 2006 EZ Loader trailer)

    I can't fish the Kenai with it, but in the long run I have a much better setup and tons of water elsewhere to enjoy myself on.

    Thanks for the help.

  13. #13

    Default G3 or Sea Ark

    A buddy just purchased the 18' G3 with a Yamaha 50hp prop with center console. Good boat for the Kenai.

    I would look at the same package in the Sea Ark boat however. Seems to me after looking at both boats the Sea Arks are built much tougher. Higher free board on the sides and a heavy duty look to it. Depends on what you want. The G3 would be lighter probably and ride higher in the water, but the Sea Ark could probably hold more weight. Both would make great hunting boats, but weight is often a big consideration when hunting.

    my opinion

  14. #14
    Member GrassLakeRon's Avatar
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    Default Lund Alaskan?

    Hi all,

    How would a 20' Lund Alaskan by on most river water situtations? I would like to pick up a boat to do well in most areas.

    Ron

  15. #15
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    Default

    Good advise here to buy used. Most of us here learned over the years how much money we wasted on buying new all the time. In May there will probably be 50 used boats listed in the Anchorage paper. Just hold out for a late model 4 stroke model and it will probably still be under warranty. New boats only stay new for one fishing trip. Buying used permits you to get a lot more for your money.
    Tennessee

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