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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay - here's the latest question I'm tossing around.

What would be the best "bang for my buck" if I only have about $4500 to spend on a boat?

Many of you have helped me TREMENDOUSLY with my boating decision, and I really appreciate your help so far.

Would I be able to find a reliable 18-21' C/C boat that seats 6 adults (safely and comfortably) for this price? I think I'll have this to spend in the next 2 months on a boat, and I'm really thinking I might go for it.

I've decided...no bass boats (no seating capacity) and no pontoon boats. I want to fish, and take family/friends out cruising the local bay/lakes. Doubt we'll ever really do any skiing/wake-boarding...just cruising and enjoying being on the water. Is a C/C "the way to go"...that seems to be what I'm leaning towards...am I on the right track? And back to that price range...$4500-5000. Is it reasonable?
 

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You are going to have to look hard because to be able to seat six adults comforably you will need a big boat. At least a 22'. I have a 22' bluewave CC and it has the capacity to sit nine but the most I have taken is six and it felt very crowed. If you want reliability you will probably have to increase your budget because you don't want to buy something really old. Old boats always need something or another. Heck newer boats always seem to need one thing or another. lol. Why do you not like pontoons. That is the type of boat I would have suggested because of the amount of people you would want to use it for and because you could probably find one around your budget. I've seen pontoons out on the bay and they look like very comfortable fishing rigs.
 

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Look at the Craiglist Classifieds for Houston, Dallas, Austin, and SanAntonio in the boats section. I've perused those adds daily for the last 2 years and there are a lot of great deals to be had of folks looking to unload a boat they no longer use. Lot's of fish and skis, and a fair amount of bay boats. Within a week I bet you find what you want. IF it were me and I had that much to spend, I'd be looking for Bluewave, Cajun, Carolina Skiff, Redfin, Bayhawk, etc. A used bay boat from 7-10 yrs old. Or an under 20 foot aluminum skiff. You can't go wrong with OMC V4 Power in the 90-150 hp range. Those are the small block chevy's of the boating world. Parts, both new and used abound, and they are very easy for the home mechanic to work on. Look for a well maintained or garaged boat with the wiring in fairly good shape. Do a compression check on the motor, and examine the spark plugs for metal deposits or other signes of overheating or lean running.
 

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$4500 kind of puts a limit on what you can get. You may want to look for a older used 17' Boston Whaler. Those are great boats.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
ANGEL said:
I dont know of any bay boat that will fish 6 people comftorbly
Let me clarify----I don't want to "FISH 6 people comfortably". I would only ever have 3, maybe 4 adults at the most in the boat when I go fishing. Probably only 2 or 3 to be realistic.

I just want the ability to have 5 or 6 adults for NON-fishing trips...just cruising.

Thanks for the info about the V4 - that is the kind of info I need, and you put it into a language I can understand.
 

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You should consider a center console aluminum boat.............you can probably find a good deal for your price range.
 

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Getting shallower means chewing mud
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The biggest problem with a center console boat is that there are very few, if any, that will actually SIT 6 people comfortably. Having them safely aboard a 22-24 foot bay boat is one thing, but there just isn't anywhere they will be able to sit. Most bay boats have a flip/flop cooler or a leaning post that is good for two people at the helm. Then there is a seat in front of the console that is questionable as far as comfort goes. Some of the newer bay boats out there are starting to put "jump seats" built into the rear deck. I think only Cajun did this back in the mid-90's. Now that is not to say that people can't sit on the deck or on the floor even. I just don't think that qualifies as comfortable seating. Also, some of the newer boats are putting cushions on part of the front deck (like where there would be a rod box or something). I know that Cajun did that on some boats too. But again, riding on the bow is not comfortable while under way and it is not really safe either.

I think a deck boat would suit your needs though. You could find one of these in your price range and age. It has the deck space and seating of a pontoon boat, but a solid fiberglass hull. That would be the best of both, IMHO.

Search for Hurricane, that is one brand of deck boat.

Tim
 

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Roll Tide!
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It's going to be really hard to find a reliable CC bay boat like you describe for under 5K. Realistically one that is in decent shape will cost you 12-15K for a 6-8 year old boat, and 10 - 12K for a 10 year old boat.

Last year when I was looking (and I looked a lot), I saw a few for under 10K, but they all had serious problems that were going to take several thousand to fix.

I agree with Lpescador that a pontoon boat may be your best bet for the money.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
What is a "deck boat"?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Okay - I've looked at some "deck boats" and I agree...these would be GREAT. They just all seem to be way out of my price range.

Maybe I need to save a couple thousand more and try to spend $6500-7000 on a nicer boat.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Hop said:
Try looking here from time to time. http://www.yachtworld.com/americanyachtsales/
That's where i got my boat. Everynow and then really great deals come thru there. All their boats are Repos.
This looks like a nice rig.. Kinda out of your price range though.
http://www.yachtworld.com/core/listing/pl_boat_detail.jsp?&units=Feet&checked_boats=1556300&slim=broker&&hosturl=americanyachtsales&&ywo=americanyachtsales&

--Hop
Yeah that is REALLY the kind of boat I would like to get. I think this is really the style and size boat I'm going target...when I get the money.
 

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The rear seats on a Cajun or any other outboard boat do not qualify as comfortable seating. Having 150 hp 2 stroke singing at 4500 rpm a couple feet from your head is not very comfortable. When you purchase any used boat, (or new one for that matter) you need to have about $2000 more expendable cash ratholed in your dresser drawer to take care of unexpected problems. I say ratholed cause momma ain't gonna be to happy if you are spending the milk money on the boat.
 

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KSims
you are looking for a deck boat that the only way you are going to haul around 6 people in a 21 to 22' boat comfortably. CC you need to go to at least 28' and its not much fun trying to yell thru your windshield to the ones up front. My roomates just got one of these for your same reasons but it in no way falls into your current price range.

http://www.tahoesportboats.com/boat/index.cfm?boat=1763

But I have seen some used ones most around 15k or so. Save your money for what you want or you will hate the fact you didn't
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I do understand why people keep telling me to get a deck boat...but I just don't see myself spending $10,000 on a boat. It's just not going to happen at this time in my life.

I'm going to have to compromise some, and the #1 goal is to get a boat I can take fishing out at the jetty, choc bayou, and occassionally take to Lake Conroe. If it will only fit 4-5 people...so be it.

I'm focusing on spending $6500 or maybe a few hundred more on a nice 19-21' C/C. It will be about 6-8 weeks before I can buy one, but I really help all your guidance and recommendations.
 

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Deck boat really won't do you well at the jetties, sorry. You can find skiffs used that may be in your range and fill your requirements and don't have to cost 10K. Good luck.
 
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