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I am looking into purchasing a boat when I return from deployment. I want something good enough to fish the bay with, but something also that i can take back in the creeks. My budget will be around 12000, could anyone give me suggestions of boats that I could use. I could go home to texas and get a 18ft center console aluminum boat, but I dont know if that would work up here?
 

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Carolina Skiff..people willl say, as they alwasy do, that the CS is a horrible ride in rough waters, but I love them. And it would suit your desire to go in creeks and the Bay. And best of all, you could spend about half your budget on a great boat..
 

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While on deployment contact Some Boat Co on line and have them send floor plans ,there is 100 Boat Mfr in North Carolina ,take a few days and go hit a few that respond and send you some onfo, I went to few boat shows thinking i wanted to move up from 19 to 22/23 and hell i have more floor space and features than new PRETTY BOY BOATS, look good, go fast, buy fish at market. Some times Older Hull/boat package is Better Deal than a New Unit.

With the budget you have allocated you will be able to find a real nice outfit as economy wont have bounced back that much after deployment, so still lots of Good deals out there , could even find a TAKE OVER Payments, Check local Marina's also as they may know some one trying to sell a good boat owing to economy

Have Safe Deployment ,made quiet a few my self over the years 57-87
 

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Carolina Skiff..people willl say, as they alwasy do, that the CS is a horrible ride in rough waters, but I love them. And it would suit your desire to go in creeks and the Bay. And best of all, you could spend about half your budget on a great boat..

I agree the CS is a great boat, but also with Al. Spend some time doing research on local boat builders and you'll be surprised at the quality and detail you'll find. Nothing wrong with a CS either, tons of commercial guys run in the shallows because they take a beating and are easily modified. Thanks for you service.
 

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For that budget I would get in a Maycraft usually lots of room in em(unfinished/inside) and built tough. With the way the economy is you may be able to get a local builder to come down a bit, but of course they will be probably be more expensive. I definantly wouldn't go with a CS. If somebody farts in it that will be enough wind to get you soaked. Ansd have you seen milkjug sized bilge in those things? Not very safe for the bay. Great for running around the rivers and such but if you get a descent sized boat, you'll find yourself spending less time in the shallow water anyway. Its funny how that happens.....Good Luck with you search.

Ben
 

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For that budget I would get in a Maycraft usually lots of room in em(unfinished/inside) and built tough. With the way the economy is you may be able to get a local builder to come down a bit, but of course they will be probably be more expensive. I definantly wouldn't go with a CS. If somebody farts in it that will be enough wind to get you soaked. Ansd have you seen milkjug sized bilge in those things? Not very safe for the bay. Great for running around the rivers and such but if you get a descent sized boat, you'll find yourself spending less time in the shallow water anyway. Its funny how that happens.....Good Luck with you search.

Ben
Why does everyone complain about getting sprayed on in a CS? I have been out in much more expensive and larger center consoles and gotten either just as wet, or almost as wet. Why not save $10,000 and get jus a tiny bit more spray? Not every Carolina Skiff has to be bare bones boat. Windshield and some curtains and you are good to go.

People always complain about the bilge too. Youd think an armada of Skiffs would be sitting on the bay floor by now. Just not the case, they get the water out quick enough. Like I said earlier, I have been out in snotty weahter all across the Bay in a CS. Other rides may be a tad smoother when running around, but the price difference more than makes up for it.
 

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JhMorgan,
People complain about getting sprayed because its kinda sucks, especially in
the winter. Nodody likes the bilge because there technically isn't one. Its just a 1ft square area in the back of the boat. You bring up some good points though, and for some its worth saving a buck or two in return for a wet, beat the hell out of you ride. I'm not trying to bash you for liking them. Plenty of people do. I'm just too old for all that. Like I said, I think they are great for the rivers but not my first choice for the bay. I like my 18ft CC with South Carolina bow. Nice, smooth, and relatively dry depending water conditions and wind direction.

SaltyCwboy,
Whats up with your rig i Texas? If you already own it, I'd be tempted to bring that up and fish the daylights out of it. Just rinse that aluminum off when you get out and don't keep in the water.

Oh, looks like its time for my lunch break Tight Lines:beer::beer::beer:
 

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Back in the 60's there were a lot of Aluminum Starcrafts around and used in the salt. Idon't remeber any one having problems with any. I had small 16' one tru the middle 90's
 

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I agree about research. there may be some GREAT boats cheap. I question, what do you kind of "creeks"?. how shallow are you going?
 

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Everybody is entitled to their opinion, so here's mine. A Carolina Skiff is not an open water boat. They are crap in the bay. As far as shallow, somewhat sheltered waters, the CS would be fine. If you plan on spending any time in the bay at all, stick with a fiberglass hull.
 

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I returned from a year long deployment in Iraq in Feb and also wanted a boat. I read and read and then I read more about all kinds of boats, skiffs, small vee's, big vee's, fiberglass vs. alum ect. I also looked on the used boat web sites to get information. I did this for close to a month. Then I went in to a local marina on a Sunday to do the touchy feely thing as there is usually no sales persons around. This ended up being an "MAJOR" learning lesson. A sales person happened to be there that day and I ended up taking a water trial and priced out what I thought was the "PERFECT" boat. Then I then I called the finance company he recommended. That's where the lesson began. Marine Finance is nothing like a car, house or even a credit card. I ended up not getting the "PERFECT" boat. Marine finance is a total pain in the a$$.

I stepped back, scaled down and started looking at used boats. I talked to folks that I saw around my area what they thought about their boats. I looked at Carolina Skiffs, Bay Riders, Sea Fox, Southern Skimmer, Sailfish, Sundance, Triumph and many others. I looked on usedboats.com to do a lot of research and get a good idea of what to look for based on price and what was being offered. I read about 4 stroke and 2 stroke motors, Yamaha, Suzuki and ETech'. I also took time to learn about marine insurance which is also VERY different. One major company I called said that if I lost my boat due to a tropical storm or hurricane they would not cover it. I live in North Carolina what the he LL good is that insurance then? None.

I did find a boat that is now in my drive way. I found it by letting friends know that I was looking as well as looking on the internet and local papers. One of the guys I know told me about the boat I ended up with that was not on the internet or in any paper. I ended up with a 24' Bay Rider made by Ken Craft. It was used and "COMPLETELY" ready to fish. It was in the budget and I couldn't be happier. 24' skiff with a Suzuki 200 (only 11 hrs on the motor. It had been recently replaced by the owner), jack plate, Garmin 3005, custom CC with a tower, troll motor, spray curtains and everything else needed to fish minus gas. I love this boat. Lots of room for the stuff needed to fish or have fun on the water with the family. Bay Riders have skegs that track the boat and when you want to turn there is NO and I mean NO run out in a turn. Handles like a vee bottom boat.

Moral to the story. Research and read about what you want. Take your time and ask LOTS of questions. It is a buyers market for boats. Many still have their 2008 and some 2007 factory stock and what to unload it for unreal prices. There are many used boats out there. Don't be afraid to travel some. If you know what size boat and motor you want call insurance companies BEFORE you buy a boat to figure out what is the best deal / price. Cheap boat insurance is just that cheap. Side note if you take a boating safety course a majority of insurance companies will give you a discount of usually 10%. My son and I took the course together.

I started out looking at deep vee's and ended up with a skiff. Why? I want to fish off shore but can't afford to play out. I can play near shore and off shore of the day is right. No matter what the big water is like I can always fish the inside. I love to flounder, trout and drum fish. There are LOTS of marsh and flat areas that the vee's can not go. I can.

Why a Bay Rider? I liked the way the boat handled on the water vs. the Carolina Skiff. No there is nothing wrong with a Carolina Skiff I just liked the ride better to include the handling. ALL skiffs will get you wet. I would consider my ride a dryer ride. That is my opinion and I'm sure there are may that will say I'm wrong, that's their opinion and they are entitled to it.


Also consider that bigger boats tend to not beat you up so bad. Simple matter of weight and size.

Feel free to contact me if I can help.
 

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Nice Boat

You made a wise choice,thats as close as you can get to the best boat of all time. Privateer!!! pretty sure it,s the original mold. you,ll be happy with it. nice homework1
 

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Everybody is entitled to their opinion, so here's mine. A Carolina Skiff is not an open water boat. They are crap in the bay. As far as shallow, somewhat sheltered waters, the CS would be fine. If you plan on spending any time in the bay at all, stick with a fiberglass hull.
CS is fiberglass
 

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CS is fiberglass
I know a Carolina Skiff is fiberglass. I mentioned sticking to a fiberglass boat because somebody else was talking about aluminum boats. I guess I didn't make that clear in my post. I wouldn't offer my opinion on a CS if I didn't even know it was fiberglass, lol. CS is a crap boat for open water. Anyway, he already picked his boat.
 

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A good used Whaler or Edgewater Boat would be a Superior choice to anything new in that price range.

Make sure the Boat you buy has at least 4lb. foam most get away with Minimum coast guard approved 2lb. it sucks up water like a sponge. also Stay away from any Boat with Wood Stringer Transom Etc. Also stay away from Force Motors Most are dead by now but there are some floating around.

2stroke e=tec/4stroke Merc or Suzuki is a good bet.


Stay away from the carolina skiff!!! i made that mistake once unless u like filling he Boat with water and soaking evryone in the Boat when you hit a crosswind or more than 8in of chop.

Good Luck!!!
 
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