View Full Version : Anyone willing to give advice on boats?

11-16-2003, 11:49 PM
I would like to hear some opinions. I am in a position to be buying a boat before next season. I know I want a boat, but I don't know what I want. I am trying to be practical; there are all kinds of beautiful boats I would love to own, but I want one that fits my needs and the use I will put it to.

I live in an area with many shallow bays, and some wild, un-improved inlets. I love poking around the shallows, clamming, crabbing, I even get bay scallops. I am not a big fisherman, but I do try some. I have a wife who likes sunbathing and a 4 year old and a 16 year old. We love taking the 17 foot boston whaler-like boat we have and pulling up on the beaches just inside the inlets around here and playing. The thing we want to add is the ability to take maybe 2 couples with us when we go out.

So, I want comfort for 6 to 8 people, shallow draft, some speed, enough to tow a skier or inflatable for the 16 year old, ability to take some nasty waves in these inlets, but only very limited use outside, and able to pull up on a beach.

I know its heresy, but fiberglass is fine. I like that Caribiana skiff, but maybe just a bit more room is what I need.

I am now looking at deck boats (roomy, pull up on the beach ability, fast) but I woudl much rather have something a little different, something salty, with character.

Anyone willing to give a liberal advice?

[ 11-16-2003, 11:51 PM: Message edited by: PatCox ]

imported_Steven Bauer
11-16-2003, 11:55 PM
Did you see Thad's thread about this boat on Ebay?



11-17-2003, 02:00 AM
hope that what ever boat you choose fufills every need I too was thinking about a deck boat for your requirements. I also wonder about a trytoon with a cabin or a power cat. when you say shallow how shallow are you looking the huge lake just west of me droped three feet in the last year and their are miles and miles of mud flat exposed

stan v
11-17-2003, 05:56 AM
Originally posted by PatCox:
Anyone willing to give a liberal advice?Sure, I give advice to liberals all the time. Fiberglass (or stich and glue) would fit your needs perfectly. If you don't have time to maintain a wooden boat, that is. If you want up to 8 people comfortably, 24' minimum. Make sure, that's a big boat. One of these days I'll post pictures of mine. :D

11-17-2003, 06:01 AM
Stan!! Don't do anything rash now! Your boat! Think of all the forumites you'll disapoint!
By the way, got those deer for the freezer yet?. I bought some farmed stuff here the other day but theyr'e fed on pellets a lot and I daresay the taste and texture would be different.

stan v
11-17-2003, 06:32 AM
Sir, yes the venison (doe) is iced down and will be vaccumed packed in 2-3 days. Haven't shot a buck yet, saw a monster Friday afternoon but couldn't get a shot. Big bucks are so fluid in motion and so very elusive! I love this time of year!

The very reason I haven't posted pictures of the boat is to avoid the disappointment that would follow! :D

11-17-2003, 06:56 AM
It sounds like you need a larger Seabright Skiff. Seaworthy, beachable, and easily planed off with low power. Check out some of the Atkin designs.

11-17-2003, 07:02 AM
Cheat a bit mate, photograph someone elses, one of those gin palaces with a monster BBQ hanging off the stern. That way you can get 'em all talking and still keep yourself pure.

A friend here spent years trying to get a good shot at a big Sambar buck, but when it came to the point it was so beautiful he couldn't pull the trigger.
Good luck!! :D 

stan v
11-17-2003, 07:10 AM
I'm thinking about posting pics of our deer camp. What a set-up! And yes, I understand your friends reluctance to kill a beautiful animal. I've passed up better than 20 bucks this year. The one I kill will be mature and past his prime. We won't shoot 2 bucks in our camp and we can take 6.

11-17-2003, 08:09 AM
... fiberglass is fine. .. I want comfort..

... I woudl much rather have something a little different, something salty, with character.

Billions of bilious blue blistering barnacles man, perhaps a megacycle-mini-disco-ball in the aft stateroom suits ye?

Blithering bombardier, thundering son of a sea-gherkin .. Rapscallion!

[ 11-17-2003, 08:11 AM: Message edited by: popeye ]

11-17-2003, 09:06 AM
Hey, Pat. I can't offer any help on the boat choice but I've been wondering how ya be. Best wishes.

11-17-2003, 09:15 AM
...... whatever happened with the cantankerous outboard ou were haveing problems with a while back?.....

11-20-2003, 10:54 PM
Dutch, after $400 worth of work that outboard is running fine indeed. I beleive it had electrical issues, the capacitors or whatever those things are called.

Norm, thanks for caring, I am doing very, very well lately; my 3 year old is becoming a smart and charming young man, I have found meaningful work I enjoy, and consequently I have less time to spend arguing, though I read through the bilge regularly.

As to the draft issue, less than 2 feet is what I am looking for. My favorite thing in life is poling my skiff through the many very very shallow back bays in search of crabs, clams, and the occasional fish.

11-21-2003, 02:07 AM
have you thought of a paddlewheel?
how fast do you want to go?

Ian McColgin
11-21-2003, 09:25 AM
Were money no object, you could get Brad and Mike to stretch the boat that graces the current WB cover.

Andrew Craig-Bennett
11-21-2003, 09:32 AM
Just a thought; Uffa Fox's very last design, for his personal use, was a launch named "Ankle Deep". Plans are available:


Might be just the job?

Keith Wilson
11-21-2003, 09:55 AM
How 'bout a Harry Bryan/William Hand "Handy Billly" launch? THe NW School (http://www.nwboatschool.org/boats/motor.htm#Handy%20Billy%2021) has one for sale - example only, it's on the wrong side of the country, but I'm sure there are some in New England. LOA: 21', Beam: 5'-10", draft: 17" with the engine down, 15 knots with 25 HP. Might be crowded with 8 large people, but six would be fine.


[ 11-21-2003, 09:58 AM: Message edited by: Keith Wilson ]

John Bell
11-21-2003, 03:48 PM
For eight people to be comfortable, you are going to need a pretty large boat, so I agree with whoever said at leas 24 feet. A deck boat sounds like a good answer, but ones that size aren't really thin-water boats. They are also pretty big and heavy, maybe too heavy to pole around much.

What you need is two boats! Get the boat your wife likes, and build the boat you need for shallow water fishing and crabbing. That's what we're doing: we just bought a 27' pontoon that will handle ten people with room to spare. Next fall I'll start building a 16' fishing boat.

I love it when the answer to a question is 'you need another boat! :D

11-21-2003, 05:53 PM
Stan said:

The very reason I haven't posted pictures of the boat is to avoid the disappointment that would follow! Your disappointment Stan?


ps - plan a trip to New Zealand - deer hunting Nirvana - best trip I had was 2 days walk from the nearest road (we cheated and flew in) in the Kaimanawa (sp?) Ranges right in the centre of the North Island.