Need boat advise please Page 1 / 2

thuntzster, Dec 21, 7:43pm
About to retire and have about 20-25k saved for my lifetime dream of a boat.
We live near Lake Dunstan and want to take it fishing and to provide water skiing and biscuit fun for the kids and grandies a couple of times a year.
Don't want to have to re-mortgage the house in fuel costs or maintenance.
What are your recommendations of a reliable boat and advice welcomed.

kazbanz, Dec 21, 9:01pm
What sort of boat are you thinking? That would be a good start point.

cjohnw, Dec 21, 9:08pm
That is a really, really difficult question to answer in my opinion.
I have always felt that the most important part of any boat is the condition of the means of propulsion.
A well built and well maintained hull can last for absolute donkeys years especially a fibreglass hull, whereas an outboard (for example) needs to have been regularly serviced, maintained and inspected. After all, you can’t hop out of the boat and walk home.
I have owned boats of differing specifications for almost 40 years and a lot of it comes down to what your primary preferred use is, (eg fishing, skiing, sailing etc) and probably the best piece of advice I can offer is not to skimp on the safety gear.
If you are mainly intending lake use a jet can be a good option.
What sort of configuration appeals to you at this point?

azza20, Dec 21, 9:30pm
My parents retired to Akaroa and purchased a boat for their adult children and grandchildren to use. They spent about $20,000 on a 17 foot Searay bow rider which is rated to hold 8 adults but we would normally only take about 6 adults on it max. If we have more numbers we often will ferry people to a bay and setup base camp there and then ski, biscuit, sun bathe, anchor & swim from the boat.
It is a stern drive so an inboard motor 3L motor. Fuel comes down to how you drive it and for how far but we often motor to a location and then anchor up,swim and explore the shore a bit then do some water skiing for an hour and would be no more than 40 bucks, Oil changes can be a bit darer than a car maybe 500 to 1000 for a decent yearly service. Also if you use your boat in salt water you need to do a decent clean after wards so lake use only is easier on maintenance but the ocean is more fun real boating in my opinion plus the buoyancy is higher in salt water

azza20, Dec 21, 10:12pm
Absolutely agree about never skimping on safety, we actually have installed a small outboard as a backup to the 3L inboard so a secondary propulsion method in case the main motor wont start but it also gets used if we are fishing as is cheaper to slowly move about with instead of the big motor and does not put hours on the main motor.
Have also had to use the small outboard once before after main motor failed but after a small repair to a micro switch in the throttle system have never had a problem with the Mercury motor.

s_nz, Dec 21, 11:56pm
Regarding Auxiliary engines. Family did an evaluation when they brought the Tristram. Our prior boat had come with one (It has been set up for freshwater fishing in the days before electric trawling motors).

Decided not to get one. We didn't do any freshwater fishing, and we figured that the money spent on buying and maintaining an AUX would be better put into the main engine, and other safety gear. Neither of those boats have ever needed a tow.

Note that most "engine" failures aren't actually the engines fault - they are either a flat battery, or a fuel issue (water in fuel or out of fuel). First can be mitigated with a dual battery system, or a lit hem jump pack. latter can be mitigated by monitoring or carrying a spare tote, along with a fuel water separator upstream of the engine.

Also small outboards are a pain, and I wouldn't want to rely on one that hadn't been run for many months. - They also clutter the transom of the boat and add weight, causing more fuel consumption and worsened performance.

These days VHF's, EPIRBS & waterproof bags for cell phones are relatively cheap, and relatively few trailer boats carry aux engines.

desmodave, Dec 22, 4:17am
If you plan to go boating alone ,you need something you are capable of launching and retrieving yourself . For a complete novice i would highly recommend doing a day skippers corse . I have the odd look at boats from time to time but soon talk myself out of it knowing it would get bugger all use and i don't have the room in the shed . There is a Fleetline at turners at the moment i keep looking at as i had 1 many years ago . Unless its changed the reserve was a lot lower that the asking price . I have an idea they have the age wrong as well . It may just tick the boxs with less out lay . No problem towing with a 2.8td Isuzu back in the day . Happy boating . .

rectech, Dec 22, 6:41am
My 10 cents worth. modern welded aluminum hulls are more practical, lighter than fibreglass and more forgiving of the odd scrape coming into the ramp.
Be cynical when buying a second hand outboard. especially those that claim to have been used in fresh water only. An outboard dies from the inside out, often presents well but cooling internal system can be caked in sea water residue. This stuff does not dissolve and if your lucky enough not to cook your engine it has to be pulled apart and scrapped out

msigg, Dec 22, 7:09am
Yes, fiberglass better ride, alot heavier to tow, 5.5M with 115 mercury or bigger, we sold one 2 years ago to mate at work, trailer was stuffed, sold for 9.5K, motor was only 60hrs, boat was aussie made, great boat, he bought a brand new trailer for 3.2k, and has used that boat heaps for fishing firth of thames, we owned it for 13 years, no problems at all, i now have a smaller stabi craft which I use for fishing in auckland harbour, I use this a bit more than the bigger boat because it is cheaper to run, easier to move around, we only ever did fishing, I have used this stabi craft heaps this year, great fun, ride is not as good. So for you, motor maybe under 250hrs if possible, fiberglass if you can back and move around with a car, 5.5 meters, I think you will find something, where you live the market might be small so you may have to search north Island, don't know, anyway good luck,

tygertung, Dec 22, 8:20am
I would advise getting the absolute smallest boat you think you need. Much lighter and easier to handle for towing, pulling up on the beach etc. You will need a smaller motor and will be much cheaper for maintenance, fuel etc.

A 14 foot boat might suitable for your needs. How many people do you wish to take?

likit, Dec 22, 8:38am
We purchased a boat in July this year, a 2000 CSB Huntsman Dorado with a 90 hp Evinrude & only 127 hours for $23k. We had to purchase everything else like life jackets first aid fire extinguisher etc as seller was buying a bigger boat & keeping everything. It’s 5.5 m long so would be ideal for you. We are first time boat owners too.
CSB boats are made here in Chch & so too are Fi glass boats.

xs1100, Dec 22, 9:03am
I would look at a bow rider with a outboard, far cheaper maintenance and fiberglass gives a far better ride especially for lake use and can also fish the whole boat.
theres a nice bonito on here at the moment and a very nice sea nymph both around that 20 k

thuntzster, Dec 22, 9:18am
Thanks for all the messages and advice. Will take a while to digest it all.

intrade, Dec 22, 9:27am
ok if you never owned a boat . then you maybe not aware of immense costs . This is why my boat never seen the water lol. i should really just sell it i guess.

apollo11, Dec 22, 9:30am
Lol. $300 flashlight.

phoenix22, Dec 22, 9:40am
We had a boat. It was a 7m Crestacraft. More than capable of towing a biscuit, but primarily bought for fishing.

If I had my time over, we would have gone smaller, lighter and newer. I found this one too hard to launch, heavy to tow (not great on towing costs), and as it was older, starting to wear (without the time or means to repair it).

The engine was a 220hp outboard from memory. Not as thirsty as you would think. We took spare fuel on board just in case in any rate.

actually glad to be rid of it, as it wasn't being used anywhere near enough to justify its cost.

bumfacingdown, Dec 22, 10:10am

tygertung, Dec 22, 11:02am
Why not a 4m or 4.5 metre boat? Only going on the lake, so shouldn't be enormous seas.

gpg58, Dec 22, 11:06am
I have a 1997 searay 240 sundancer, irish built one, so solid glass not a cored hull, (built in cork) with low hours, that i have never used since buying over 10 years ago. Bought before the quakes, so was useful during that period (flush dunny etc), but has just sat as a front yard ordainment. Spent heaps though, with new risers and manifolds etc, new gearbox(leg), rebuilt trailer, new brake actuator and controller etc.
Should really sell her, as unlikely to ever use, and was really just somewhere to put a lump of money, rather than fritter it away on short term junk.
My dearest torch( Astrolux MF02S V2, SBT90.2) was just under $400 with batteries.

bwg11, Dec 22, 11:12am
I've owned lots of power boats over the 50 years I've lived by the sea. I faced a similar buying decision to the OP ten years back at age 65. I've owned ply boats, glass boats, alloy boats, two strokes, four strokes and E-techs and am very happy with the choice I made. I bought a SF485 Haines (actually 5.22 metres OA), my requirements were very similar to the OP, the sea, inland lakes, fishing and holiday time skiing grandchildren. I chose a 90hp Yamaha two-stroke, bit thirsty, dead reliable and plenty of bottom end grunt to pull an adult out of deep water on a single ski. I use a 5hp two stroke as an auxiliary and trolling motor, hindsight would say a four stroke may have been better as it is very hard to set an accurate trolling speed on the two stroke and even on 100:1, it is a bit smelly downwind.

I see someone advocating the OP goes smaller, there is an old saying that your 15 footer looks like a 20 footer in the garage but seems like a 10 footer when you get caught out in a storm.

martin11, Dec 22, 12:08pm
You do not know the lakes very well they can get strong winds and chop on them very quickly .

s_nz, Dec 22, 2:34pm
Mostly capacity and power.

OP talked about taking 3 generations skiing. A 4.5m would be considered pritty full with 4 people on board. A 5.5m boat could carry 6 or 7 typically.

If they want to pull adult's out from a deep water start on a single ski, when the boat is loaded, a engine in the 150hp range is ideal (can get away with a bit smaller if two stroke, or a light boat).

The above two factors generally point to a boat around the 5.5m mark, where you get a decent capacity, and power, without being beyond the tow rating of Rav4 sized vehicles.

But yes, if they can get away with smaller, everything is going to be cheaper and easier. Especially if they can get down to a boat size that is under 750kg on the trailer, so can get away without trailer breaks. also in this size range most outboards drop are three rather than 4 cylinders so services should be a touch cheaper.

gunhand, Dec 22, 6:03pm
You do realize the Edmund Fitzgerald was sunk by huge waves, on a lake.
And it was one of the biggest iron ore ships back then.

apollo11, Dec 22, 6:13pm
Lake Superior is more like a small inland sea. But yeah, people get caught out (and drown) in lakes like Tekapo all too often.

gunhand, Dec 22, 6:28pm
Still classed as a lake all the same. Ive water skied on Dunstan with rather large swells, oddly I was the only idiot doing it. Never again.

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