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Thread: Hewescraft and big water

  1. #1

    Default Hewescraft and big water

    Just wondering what kind of bad weather you guys have had your hewescraft boats in and how they handled? What were the conditions like at the time? Interested in all hewescraft owner stories. Thanks

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    Member spoiled one's Avatar
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    I had a 24 foot Alaskan for six seasons. I put a 1000 hours on a pair of F100s. They will handle more water than I will. The searunners are a very utilitarian boat that fish very well and are a great value IMO. I would not consider the standard 22 searunner. They only have an 8 foot beam, no ET, and generally outfitted with a F115. Not enough power. This could get you in trouble. They are a great boat at a reasonable price. The Pacific Cruisers are not very pretty in my eyes, but fill a nice niche.
    Spending my kids' inheritance with them, one adventure at a time.

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    I have a 2007, 26ft. Alaskan and have boated in PWS, Resurrection Bay, and Kachemak Bay for the last 4 years. As a result, I have experienced some rough seas, to include 6-8 footers. Recently came back from a 4 day bear hunt in PWS during a small craft advisory; seas were a constant 6 ft. crossing Port Wells, it was raining sideways, and the boat handled it very well. It is powered by twin Yamaha 115s, which have proven to be plenty of power. I have 3 young kids and have to say I feel it is a very safe boat, and as spoiled one said, I too feel the Hewes is a great value. Hope to see you on the water sometime.

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    I am not a very good judge of wave size, not even sure how they are measured for sure. Ours is the 26' Alaskan also. I have had waves hitting the dinghy on top coming over the bow and on the starboard side on more than one occasion. It seems like not all eight foot seas are equal, it matters which direction the weather is coming from and the wind speed. Anyway it handled all the horrible weather I have experienced really well, much better than the people inside. We used to have a 25 foot inboard jet boat, a blast to drive in flat water but when it got rough I thought we were going to die. Love the Hewescraft though, and two motors is peace of mind.
    Hike faster. I hear banjo music.

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    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wildog View Post
    I am not a very good judge of wave size, not even sure how they are measured for sure. Ours is the 26' Alaskan also. I have had waves hitting the dinghy on top coming over the bow and on the starboard side on more than one occasion. It seems like not all eight foot seas are equal, it matters which direction the weather is coming from and the wind speed. Anyway it handled all the horrible weather I have experienced really well, much better than the people inside. We used to have a 25 foot inboard jet boat, a blast to drive in flat water but when it got rough I thought we were going to die. Love the Hewescraft though, and two motors is peace of mind.
    Which twins u running, Wildog?

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    I've experienced plenty in the 21 ft. Searunner, 220 Searunner, and the 220 Oceanpro. The Ocean pro provides the most comfort. I've handled some pretty decen water in the 21 ft searunner growing up. 6 ft starts to get a little uncomfortable, but with a good skipper you can make it home. Last fall I experienced 8 ft seas in a 220 Sea Runner. It wasnt' fun, and I was pretty sure we were going to die, but it made it. Over all I've always felt safe in a Hewescraft, and I have rarely found them to be lacking.
    I'd agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong.

  7. #7

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    I used to have a 24' harbercraft kingfisher and I found out that you need power when you least expect it. I had a single 225 honda and coming back from montague we ran through 10-12 foot following steep seas. That motor did not have the power to get my boat out of the trough and up the next wave. I had to wait for the wave behind me to start to break on the stern and then push me up the back side of the wave in front. SCARY! But we made it. Meanwhile my buddy following us in his Boulton boat was taking on water in his fuel fill spout so he was running on one motor half the time draining water from the separator. Next time I'm going to stay anchored up in a nice cove somewhere kicked back without the death grip on the wheel! I'll never have another boat without 2 motors, and they have to be big enough to get on step with just one.

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    Member chico99645's Avatar
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    I holed up in Agnes Cove out of Seward last summer along with 3 other boats ranging from 26-30 feet. I was the smallest at 24 in my Alaskan 240. I took trail and the 30 footer took lead. It was BLABLOQ, and 8-10 footers. After waiting 8 hours, the big dog said he was making a break for it so we all decided to follow. I took trail and for the most part we were in the trough and it was hairy to say the least. Took over 3 hours to make it back to harbor. I will never to that again, but I know my boat can do it.

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    Member FISHFACE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by overtime View Post
    I used to have a 24' harbercraft kingfisher and I found out that you need power when you least expect it. I had a single 225 honda and coming back from montague we ran through 10-12 foot following steep seas. That motor did not have the power to get my boat out of the trough and up the next wave. I had to wait for the wave behind me to start to break on the stern and then push me up the back side of the wave in front. SCARY! But we made it. Meanwhile my buddy following us in his Boulton boat was taking on water in his fuel fill spout so he was running on one motor half the time draining water from the separator. Next time I'm going to stay anchored up in a nice cove somewhere kicked back without the death grip on the wheel! I'll never have another boat without 2 motors, and they have to be big enough to get on step with just one.
    That's the problem with going out to Montague, there is only a one or two places to tuck away and hide. You can go into North or South twin if it's coming from the south east, but from there until the cape it's wide open.
    Boatless

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    I have had my 26' OP and have been in water with swells that came over the anchor mount and still felt safe. I generally do not go out and search for weather to boat in but i have been very pleased with my Hewescraft and the twin 115 motors. I thought the price was very reasonable for a new boat so overall my wife and I are very happy with the boat.

    Sweepint
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    26' Hewescraft Cuddy, twin 115 Yam

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    Member Dan in Alaska's Avatar
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    I owned a 22-foot SeaRunner hardtop for six seasons and put over 800 hours on it with a single F115. That boat needs more power in my opinion, and Suzuki 175 would have been my first choice if I kept the boat any longer. I now own a 26-foot Alaskan SeaRunner with twin 115's, and I still think it needs more power. A pair of 175's would be great, but the price tag will keep them on the wish list for right now.

    The Hewescrafts handle well in rough water, and they will take rougher seas than their passengers. I've never felt in danger, but there are a few trips where we got tossed pretty good. I think most AK boaters have had those trips, and those that haven't probably will.



    Quote Originally Posted by overtime View Post
    I'll never have another boat without 2 motors, and they have to be big enough to get on step with just one.
    This sounds like a good idea on paper, but in reality it rarely works out that way. By the time you prop both motors correctly to hit the proper RPM range at WOT, you've got a prop that way too aggressive to plane the boat with a single motor.

    The twin 2-stroke boat I've run (225 OptiMax's) was able to do it, but it still struggled for a mile or two before getting on step. A friend has a boat equipped with twin Etecs, and he say he can plane it with one motor, but it also takes some work.

    None of the boats I've run that were equipped with twin 4-strokes (twin 225s, 250s, and 300s) can plane the boat with a single engine, even though in they had enough power in theory. It's all about the props.

  12. #12

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    This sounds like a good idea on paper, but in reality it rarely works out that way. By the time you prop both motors correctly to hit the proper RPM range at WOT, you've got a prop that way too aggressive to plane the boat with a single motor.

    The twin 2-stroke boat I've run (225 OptiMax's) was able to do it, but it still struggled for a mile or two before getting on step. A friend has a boat equipped with twin Etecs, and he say he can plane it with one motor, but it also takes some work.

    None of the boats I've run that were equipped with twin 4-strokes (twin 225s, 250s, and 300s) can plane the boat with a single engine, even though in they had enough power in theory. It's all about the props.
    If you want to get on step with one, you'll probably need to carry a spare lower pitch prop. I've had to do this a couple times although not with OBs but IO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Halibutgrove View Post
    If you want to get on step with one, you'll probably need to carry a spare lower pitch prop. I've had to do this a couple times although not with OBs but IO.
    I have twin 115's on my Alaskan 240 and if I could do it all again, I would have a single 250 and a 20 kicker. I have tried with a 15 pitch to get on step with a single motor and can't do it, even with a bare minimum load. I run 17 pitch now for better performance. Tried many different props before I settled on that one.

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    Two points on twins, Dan already addressed props, the other is most boats with twins don't have enough hp to get on plane with one. You should size the twins so that your gross weight is 40 times your hp, hence a 115 is good to plane a 4600# gross weight boat.

    The spare prop idea is great, but if conditions are really bad and you loose one engine, you're not going to stop dead in the water to swap out a prop, you're going to limp with an overpowered kicker into the closest cove.

    Not to say there aren't some advantages of twins, but to set them up properly they should be big enough and have completely independent fuel and electrical systems.
    Those that are successful in Alaska are those who are flexible, and allow the reality of life in Alaska to shape their dreams, vs. trying to force their dreams on the reality of Alaska.

    If you have a tenuous grasp of reality, Alaska is not for you.

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    I think Dan said it best. "The Hewescrafts handle well in rough water, and they will take rougher seas than their passengers."

    We were in 6' seas that were stacked together cause of a rip tide. A wave caught the bow and threw us sidways. Going broadside down the back of a steep wave I figured the next wave would fill us up. Didn't happen, came close but I was impressed.
    I'd agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong.

  16. #16

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    Thanks for the responses guys! We have a 22 ocean pro with the extended transom and hard top and really like it. It came with the 115 yamaha on it but after one season we knew it was a little light on power for that boat. This spring we put the Suzuki 175 on it and absolutely love it, plenty of power out of the hole with great top end speed. I was curious about the weather because we run out of Valdez and have had it in 4 footers with the occasional 5 but not much bigger than that so I wanted to hear your guys' experiences. Thanks again

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    Member Mort's Avatar
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    Really, to quantify what wave height a boat can handle is a bit tough and probably incomplete. As several folks here have described different situations, you can see that 5' rollers will be significantly different from 4' chop - I'd take the rollers, generally. Chop on top of rollers changes everything, especially if they are in different directions. The intersection of Port Wells with Passage Canal, near Esther Island, is a classic example of confused seas, and even when the numbers aren't that high, the seas can be very uncomfortable!

    That being said, in 8 seasons of running my 260 AK Searunner, I've only had to turn around twice - once I boated elsewhere, once I headed for the port. That may be because of my own timidity, but the boat can handle some unpleasant seas. I think it can handle more than I am willing to. I suspect your Ocean Pro can handle a ton - more than you will be comfortable in. Good luck, and turn back early!

    Chris

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    Guy here in Juneau got his dad killed in a Hewey. Once of those models with the built-in "swimming pool" in the bow. Got caught in rough water a took a few waves over the bow. Filled up the pool and created a heavy bow. Swamped the boat. All aboard were lucky to get rescued except the pilot's father. A very sad day . . .

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    Quote Originally Posted by moosehunter83 View Post
    Thanks for the responses guys! We have a 22 ocean pro with the extended transom and hard top and really like it. It came with the 115 yamaha on it but after one season we knew it was a little light on power for that boat. This spring we put the Suzuki 175 on it and absolutely love it, plenty of power out of the hole with great top end speed. I was curious about the weather because we run out of Valdez and have had it in 4 footers with the occasional 5 but not much bigger than that so I wanted to hear your guys' experiences. Thanks again

    My dad has the 22 oceanpro, but he's got it powered with the 225 yamaha. It's handles real well. We've hit some big water during Nov. and I've never felt nervous.
    I'd agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong.

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