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  • Recommendations for river/lake boat

    Been a saltwater guy my entire boating life, but this winter/spring I'm looking to pickup a fresh water boat. Uses will be hunting the kenai pen lakes and wanting something I can run the copper river with. Prefer outboard vs inboard. This boat won't be used for long trips up the Yukon or such for moose, so that is not a factor.

    Advice for a newby on boats to look for, and those to avoid will be appreciated. Looking to spend $15-$25k for a total package. Thanks.
    In 1492 Native Americans discovered Columbus lost at sea
    _________________________________________________

    If I come across as an arrogant, know-it-all jerk, it's because I am

  • #2
    I assume you will be dip netting at Chitna, or do you have other destinations on the Copper?

    Might be nice to have a jet if you are going to be in glacial rivers much. An 18ft jon with a hydraulic transom lift and a 50 HP motor (Kenai legal) that you can put a prop or jet unit on seems to be a nice way to outfit a multipurpose boat. You could use that set up most anyplace if you are not carrying a huge load and you are not looking for comfort. I am partial to console vs tiller steering. Honda does not make a 50hp jet that is practical. Yamaha and the Etec seem to be readily available with a jet or lower unit. The haudraulic and manual lifts are on line. Found one at Dewey's once also. Not sure about a tunnel on a jon and if the prop tunnel works well with a jet and vice versa. May be best to get is flat bottom or close to. Used jon's are everywhere on Craigslist, but hard to find a good motor. Good luck.

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    • #3
      How much lake time vs river time? How big of peninsula lakes? Kenai and Skilak? I would lean towards an 18' Lund or similar boat rigged with a 50 hp prop and electric lift. Semi V front-end to make it ride better than a sled. Yet the rear 2/3's of the hull are quite flat and draw very little water on step. And with the electric lift once on step you can keep bumping the motor up to the point you can darn near run the water you can with a jet. That way it'll still handle well in rougher water and have more power than a 50 with a jet. No such thing as a true do it all boat. I had a 20' Bayrunner for many years with a 50hp Yami 4stroke. That was a very versatile boat. Fish the Kenai cook inlet seward and all over the sound with it. Handled big water well but would beat the snot out you if you got in a hurry at all. Best advice I can give is make a list of the places you will use it. Then be honest about where you will use it most. And finally what you want it todo best, and what things you are willing to give up to make it do well. Good luck in your search.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by theultrarider View Post
        Best advice I can give is make a list of the places you will use it. Then be honest about where you will use it most. And finally what you want it todo best, and what things you are willing to give up to make it do well.
        Dunno your waters any more than I know the morals of lawyers. But I used the same process in narrowing our choices, and came out with the perfect boat for us. Other boats might be better in any one of the locations, but none hit all the spots as well as ours. Couldn't be happier, but the next guy making a list most likely would come up with an entirely different solution. Only you can make the final choice, and you need a clear head about the choices when you do it.
        "Lay in the weeds and wait, and when you get your chance to say something, say something good."
        Merle Haggard

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        • #5
          TlingitWarrior,

          Get a custom sled from Svendsen Marine in Wrangell. 20.5 x 60" bottom for $13,500 custom tunnel jet sled , add a new trailer for $1,800, and then top if off with a new 115/80 Merc Four Stroke from Bass Pro in Anchorage for $9,800. And Viola 100% new awesome sled package, way more durable than anything else! I don't know if you want a forward console setup or a tiller. If you are running alone at times then a fwd helm setup would be the way to go.

          http://www.svendsenmarine.com/20_jet..._package_price



          I am on the edge of getting this exact setup. I just went on a trip with my 1860 SeaArk 1860 MVJT and a Honda 90/65 tiller. It was great but when getting to the rivers a few times I wish I had a beefier Svendsen.

          Sobie2

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          • #6
            Nice looking sled, go for the 6' bottom model IMO.

            http://www.svendsenmarine.com/wide-botton_jet_sled#Next
            “Ideologies separate us. Dreams and anguish bring us together.”
            ― Eugene Ionesco
            "FREEDOM" Only those that are denied truly know what it means.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Akgramps View Post
              Nice looking sled, go for the 6' bottom model IMO.

              http://www.svendsenmarine.com/wide-botton_jet_sled#Next
              Except the 6' wide model is $15k and you need a 150/105hp outboard and that package is $30k vs $25K.

              I don't know what a 20' Wooldridge AK XL package costs with a 150/105. but I am led to believe that is around the $30-$35k price.

              Sobie2

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              • #8
                Tlingkit,
                Also look at Gary Feaster's boats at Greatland welding if you are in the market for a flat bottom type of river boat. Just another option to explore locally.....
                BK
                BK Marine Services 232-6399
                Alaskas only Planar diesel heaters dealer, service, warranty, and installation.
                Alaskas only Lonestar drum winch dealer, Whirlwind props, Stinger gearbox, and Alumatech airboats.
                Www.bkmarineservices.com

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                • #9
                  thanks for responses. Hoping for a standup console. Yes Daved, dipnetting on copper.
                  In 1492 Native Americans discovered Columbus lost at sea
                  _________________________________________________

                  If I come across as an arrogant, know-it-all jerk, it's because I am

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Sobie2 View Post
                    TlingitWarrior,

                    Get a custom sled from Svendsen Marine in Wrangell. 20.5 x 60" bottom for $13,500 custom tunnel jet sled , add a new trailer for $1,800, and then top if off with a new 115/80 Merc Four Stroke from Bass Pro in Anchorage for $9,800. And Viola 100% new awesome sled package, way more durable than anything else! I don't know if you want a forward console setup or a tiller. If you are running alone at times then a fwd helm setup would be the way to go.

                    http://www.svendsenmarine.com/20_jet..._package_price



                    I am on the edge of getting this exact setup. I just went on a trip with my 1860 SeaArk 1860 MVJT and a Honda 90/65 tiller. It was great but when getting to the rivers a few times I wish I had a beefier Svendsen.

                    Sobie2

                    Sobie 2, what are the major benefits of this boat over the sea ark? I have a friend in the market for a 24' sea ark jet/prop combo with a rear console and canopy. When we looked at the sea arks that size, they looked pretty stinking beefy. Let me know your thoughts and any issues that you've had. TIA
                    ~Alaska born and raised~ •'04 Duckworth, 5.7 w/ 3-stg. •High side Lowe, '13 Yami 25 prop+Merc 40/30 jet
                    •Ranger 6x •CAT atv w/ 27" rubber •A very large moose buggy •M7 153" "Earned, NOT given"

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                    • #11
                      boondockinak - if you are only running interior rivers, then the SeaArk or an Alweld will be just fine. If you have to run in the salt to get to your rivers, then you should consider something heavier (or custom) like a Svendsen.

                      The SeaArks have .100 thick aluminum. I have broken a number of welds on my SeaArks from pounding in steep chop going to and from the rivers I run (both sides of the hull where the bottom meet the sides, and a few of the rib to hull welds). I have also seen a lot of broken transom welds too. Even after those breaks I still bought another SeaArk. They are lighter than a Svendsen, but don't kid yourself you are moving a stuck SeaArk without extra help or some equipment. The SeaArks handle really well in shallow water, but the streaks get creased easily from running in the glacial rock rivers I run. And they don't lend them selves as good candidates for installing UHMW because of the streaks. The .100 metal does respond well to a sledge hammer to pound out any impacts.

                      As you can see in the photo Svendsen has more of a vee in the bow to help with the chop and they are a full custom builder so you can get any thickness hull you want (3/16 being the usual). You can also get UHMW to help with sliding over things and it minimizes impact damage. Any of these things you can get from any custom built boat. Svendsens are just local for me.

                      Sobie2

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                      • #12
                        Boondockinak- does this fit your buddy's needs?
                        http://juneau.craigslist.org/boa/4760614848.html
                        24' Yamaha/merc 225 four stroke 540 hrs. $25kClick image for larger version

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                        Sobie2

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                        • #13
                          I like these>>>> http://www.wooldridgeboats.com/catalog/products/alaskan
                          Need to get in touch with Glen at wooldridge boats.
                          sigpic
                          www.aluminumalloyboats.com

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Sobie2 View Post
                            Boondockinak- does this fit your buddy's needs?
                            http://juneau.craigslist.org/boa/4760614848.html
                            24' Yamaha/merc 225 four stroke 540 hrs. $25k[ATTACH]81941[/ATTACH]
                            Sobie2

                            Sobie,

                            He's looking for a rear console with canopy, with a completely open from deck. Much more utility minded with the fully open deck. They had a very similar model to what he's looking for at the boat show at the Northway mall. That's a good looking boat though. Thanks for the response.
                            ~Alaska born and raised~ •'04 Duckworth, 5.7 w/ 3-stg. •High side Lowe, '13 Yami 25 prop+Merc 40/30 jet
                            •Ranger 6x •CAT atv w/ 27" rubber •A very large moose buggy •M7 153" "Earned, NOT given"

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Looks like you could get a setnet skiff cheap after the last two years!

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