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Duck Slayer
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What do would you guys prefer? I don't really need the airboat but would like to have the ability to go dry if I need to. I hunt Trinity Bay and the private marsh around it. Give me some input guys
 

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Duck removal service
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Airboat issues

GDO, I ran airboats for years doing marine biology research and if there was a proving example for the old saw about the 2 happiest days in a boater's life (the day you buy, the day you sell) this is it. I have to put an * on this since I was running in the hypersaline Laguna Madre, but OMG the repair issues! I had 2 Panthers, one with a 350 Chevy and the other with a Buick 455 and they sure got me where I needed to go. But, I ****** off everyone within earshot which was a significant distance and my scariest boat stories all center on those wind machines.

My mud boat experience is limited to 3 years working in Sabine NWR and Rockefeller WR both in Cajun Country and we didn't use them all that much. Fresher water, fewer hours so this can't be considered a direct comparison but I have zero scary stories and the repair time was not even comparable. Of course the territory I could cover wasn't really comparable either.

So, if you are good about maintenance and don't push the envelope and don't mind having folks shoot the rod at you all the time then go with the airboat, otherwise the mudder's the way to supreme satisfaction.
 

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Duck Slayer
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I know that I could definately run in absolutely no water with the airboat. There are only a few spots that I wold possibly need this luxury. Everything else is about 1-2" of water and about a foot of mud. I normally have 2-3 guys with me, a dog and about 12 dozen decoys. I just want to be able to go no less than 20 mph. We run a jet drive right now and the issues with the intake getting plugged with grass and hyacinth is becoming a huge headache. I have been looking at the 35 surface drives from various manufacturers, and I am just about sold. I just need the extra input.
 

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Duck removal service
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Dry running

Yup, with the airboat just have the guys sit up front and spit on the grass as you go. DO NOT TRY THIS ON SAND! I spent 3 days laying a board road to get me off a sand flat when the tide left me high and dry, and while it was a good way to lose weight I still don't recommend it. Sand will grab you like velcro even if you have a polymer bottom (which I did).
 

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Duck Slayer
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Do you mean dry sand or sand in a few inches of water?
 

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Duck removal service
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Stuck bad

Doesn't matter. Even if you have 3 inches of water over the sand, if you drag bottom it's gonna get ugly fast. Dry sand is a total no way. I got hung in about 4 inches at high but falling tide. I had some older folks in the boat and they were spooked when we started grabbing so I shut it down thinking I could work it the 150 yards over to deep water. As soon as that boat settled it was there for 3 days. You can imagine how popular I was with the crusty old scientists I had on board. Fortunately it wasn't a difficult hike out, but that was the last time they ever got in the boat.
 

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Duck Slayer
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
well, I think that just swayed me away from the airboat. I'm not worried about the maintenance or repairs. I just need the versatility and it sounds like the mud motor gives me more. I can go from deep water to mud to sandy bottom and not have to worry about much. Not to mention if I do get into a sticky situation it would be easier to move a light aluminum boat with a mud motor on it as opposed to a long and wide airboat that has a huge motor on it. Thanks for the input instigator. Green coming at ya.
 

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You can put a polymer bottom the air boat to get across the sand, but it is expensive. I have a Go Devil long tail mud motor. Man these things can go through some stuff, you just need enough of something (mud/water) to cover the prop. It is for sale if interested, shoot me a pm. I have a new GD on the way. I'm getting the 35 hp Surface Drive. It to is expensive (5,500), but the perfomance is awesome, maintence is low and simple, if you can turn a wrench, you can work on a mud motor, other than oil change & adding grease, I have not had any problems.
 

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Polymer bottom helps, but if you lose your forward momentum and back off the gas at all on shallow sand, you are stuck. If you get on the gas hard trying to get through the sand and then you stick, you risk tossing your passengers. Either way shallow sandy bottoms are best avoided, which can be easier said than done. Mud and grass - polymer bottoms rock, big sand flat with 3" water - polymer bottoms sometimes still won't help you.
 

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Brodie,

You need to contact jjtroutkiller (Joe) about the Mud Motors. He has ran a few of them. Also, try this Web Site (http://mudmotortalk.com/) its dedicated to the mud motor folks.
 

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I run the Go-Devil 35 SD on an 18x60 SD Hull. I spend almost all my time running out in the Trinty and Marsh around there. Mudboat or Airboat hard sand bottoms do not mix well with either.



Shoot me a PM and I can get you some more info, and take you on a demo run.
 

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See ya on the flats!
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Turtle...I was just waiting on you to reply. I would definitely go with a mud motor...too many advantages unless you just want to romp over land.

Can't wait to see what Wayne's boat does with the new motor! Was hoping we could get it on today!

Late,
Cox
 

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D. Ferg Outdoors
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I bought myself a duck huntin rig last season and just about got it all set up and well i blew the hub twice and my tire fell off..twice lol...but thats another story (and a long painful at that lol)--anyways its a 2005 17'x52'' Lowe Roughneck...i put a new 35 Hypersport Mudbuddy with Level One kit (made it about 42 hp) and added hydrolic remote steering and i absolutly love it...i run about 27 loaded and close to 30-32 by myself...i dont even think about getting stuck anymore while im out there...ive run practically dry land for a good 100 ft once and after doing that ill be sold on mud motors for live...they are cheaper and less maintainence than airboats but can practically do the same things-or atleast anything that ill ever be doing in a boat!! i know jdf said he take for a ride but if u want to try out a Mudbuddy let me know!!
 

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Be careful some WMA's will not allow a mud motor over 25hp. Last year a friend got a nice ticket for running his 35hp while duck hunting.
 

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LA Cox said:
Turtle...I was just waiting on you to reply. I would definitely go with a mud motor...too many advantages unless you just want to romp over land.

Can't wait to see what Wayne's boat does with the new motor! Was hoping we could get it on today!

Late,
Cox
We are going to run all day next Saturday after he gets it put on! He will be very happy with it.
 

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I know Anahuac Refuge doesn't allow anything over 25 horse Air Cooled or more than a 9 1/2" Blade I believe or at least something similar to that.
 

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it is what it is
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a friend of mine has a mudd motor and wants to sell, it has the same problem with sand, it just doesnt want to go, so if the water is 3-4 inches with a hard sandy bottom then your gonna be stuck. ive hunted just about all types of duck boats and to me the most versatile is a good airboat. the polomar bottom with a one of the aircraft engines. you wont have any problems, runs on dry land. for where i hunt the jet drive outboard is perfect, i put some chicken wire on my intake that helps keep the thick grass out some, but where i hunt its mainly real fine grass and my stainless impeller chews it right up, when you get the new ride are you selling your jet drive we wanna get another one to hunt with more people
 

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Duck Slayer
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
First off thanks to everyone that had some input on this topic. I have decided to go with the mud motor for obvious reasons. I don't really plan on going over dry land and if I do then I will just have to pring some PVC and invest ina winch. Now I have to figure out which brand to go with. I am really leaning towards the Mud Buddy because of the fact that you can add performance upgrades whereas with the GD I haven't seen any upgrades on the market.

TXDrake: This isn't Brodie it is Brad. I am about a foot taller than Brodie. I actually signed up at mudmotortalk.com a while back and have really recieved some great information. Thanks for the input.

JDF Turtle: A friend of mine actually sells the GD boats and motors in Mont Belvieu and that was the reason that I started looking at mud motors as opposed to airboats. Thanks for the invite and you have a pm.

DFerg: So far I like the MB with the stage 5 upgrade. If you can run above 20 loaded down then it looks like all I need is the stage 1 which will save me a few grand. Sorry to hear about the wheel falling off, trust me I know how bad that sux!!! Thanks for the invite and you have a pm also.

JJordan: I have actually tried everything possible with the jet drive from using chicken wire to cutting the guards out of the intake and nothing seems to work all that well. Getting into where I want to go is no problem, it is getting back out that is the headache. You gotta have water to get on plane. I appreciate your interest in the boat, but we are going to keep it as a backup and transport boat. I know it doesn't have the versatility of the mud motor, but it can run a lot shallower than a regular outboard.

Once again, thanks to everyone for your input. Good luck this season. FYI, Rice Rockets start falling out of the sky in 40 days and 23 hours and counting!!!
 
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