The Boating Forum - Best built longest lasting boats on the market are.........

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07-16-2005, 08:52 AM
Bare in mind that I have limited experiece but wanted other opinions on this. Carolina classic, Regulator, Whaler, Contender, Sea Sport(never seen one in person)?

Please add names to this list and give opinions on the ones I listed.

Lets even add welded aluminum ocean boats to this list. Daigle welding, Pacific,

Id like to hear from people who have owned them and beat them for 5 or 10 years and they are still as good as day 1. :)

07-16-2005, 08:52 AM
Seaswirl of course :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

07-16-2005, 10:01 AM

07-16-2005, 10:02 AM
For runabouts, I think there are more old Whalers around than anything else. The old Sport models are very simple boats; just a motor, a few wires and a fuel tank combined with classic hull design. Some probably shouldn't be out there, but many- thirty, forty years old- are still sound and used every day. I bought a '72 13 in 1986. Kept it three years. Easy to tow/launch. Very small, though. Sold it, at a profit. This 13 is still floating in 2005. It's been sold numerous times since I owned it. Most of the owners, like me, started with this boat and eventually got a bigger one. The guy who owns it now lives down the road. He loves it (for now). It is a very good, basic, entry-level boat.

07-16-2005, 10:10 AM
trust me, Stamas no other compares

07-16-2005, 10:15 AM
I have a 1974 17 Mako that I inhertied from my father, who bought new in 74'. This spring I installed it's 4th engine and I use it several times a week. That is one hell of a good record..there are amny other vintage Mako's out there as well.

Chris Miller
1974 17 Mako
1985 24 Rampage

07-16-2005, 10:19 AM
I own a 1968 Owens, and I see quite a few old Bertrams around that could be her daddy.

07-16-2005, 11:59 AM year and counting! :)

07-16-2005, 01:05 PM
I'd vote:- Albemarle- Boston Whaler- Bertrams- Mako (gotta be careful of years and transoms)- Grady White (not all years)- Seacrafts (cause lots have been rebuilt due to its good running surface shape)-Wellcraft

07-16-2005, 02:13 PM
Bertram, Hatteras and Chris-Craft come to mind as the earliest of the companies building fiberlgass hulls in the late 50s that still have hulls afloat. Hinckley probably has sailboats around but didn't start building powerboats until recently. Rybovich I believe has wooden hulls from the 60s still afloat. Tiara (S2) started building powerboats in the 70s and I believe you'll still find some of those hulls around. I'm sure I'm missing some others. Probably a few 60s Donzi's around.

07-16-2005, 02:19 PM
I've got to say, the Regulators, Contenders and Sea Vee's aren't exceptionally old boats, although they are built solid, there aren't any Contenders before 1984, and probably a similar story with the other two.... The old Potter-Built Seacrafts have to be one of the Best Built AND Longest Lasting.... some of them are from the early 70's, and still going strong. It's hard to have much more proof than that. Although, I really think my Contender could outlast.

07-16-2005, 02:32 PM
Boston Whaler


07-16-2005, 02:56 PM
There's got to be no question that for sheer numbers, you'll find more older (20-40 years) Whalers around than any other brand.A decent 70's or 80's hull with original power will sell for more than when new.

07-16-2005, 03:19 PM
I know they're not fishin' boats but there are ALOT of early to mid
70's Glastrons around.


07-16-2005, 03:33 PM
Longest lasting???

Hands down.......Boston Whaler.*I don't know of to many glass boats out there from the sixties that were massed produced and still floating and servicable in 2005. :thumbsup:


07-16-2005, 04:20 PM
Longest Lasting with a liftime warranty (not a 5 or 10 year)?

Has to be Triumph.

Read what the owners say at

Then, hit a dock a little hard with your fiberglass boat and tell me how your wallet feels.

07-16-2005, 04:34 PM

07-16-2005, 04:52 PM
Whaler, there are some old ones living their second or third life with kids today. When you see some 40+ year old Seaswirls out there taking a beating, call me. Grady and Mako from the 60's and 70's were flat out tanks if you could keep the wood from rotting.

Glen E
07-16-2005, 04:59 PM
My house is at the entrance to the entire Pompano canal complex of approx 1200 waterfront/access homes - we sit on the back porch every night or so watching the boat parade of people coming and going...Down here, it's Grady-White by a large margin when it comes to those that are 10 years or older...

07-16-2005, 05:02 PM
Old Formula 233's

07-16-2005, 05:29 PM
I realize that Privateer is a small builder compared to the Big Guns, but I've got two that are 10 plus years old and held up better than many other boats of the same vintage.

While maintenance and care for a boat will extend its useful life - the foundation on which the hull was constructed ultimately determines the lifespan of the vessel.

Look beyond the fancy finishes and big names and there are boats to be discovered.

See you on the water!

07-16-2005, 05:36 PM
go buy an old 25-26 bertram. fish it until the engines die, repower and keep on fishing.

07-16-2005, 05:41 PM
I did leave out the older Bertrams, but I was going mainly for outboard models. There are alot of old 20,25,28 and 31 foot Berts still kicking. Some are probably on their 4th set or more of engines :o

07-16-2005, 05:56 PM
Best built longest lasting boats on the market are......... "BUILT FORD TOUGH" ? ;?

07-16-2005, 06:09 PM
There are still a bunch of old Robalo hulls on the water..........70's models. They aren't the oldest functioning boats but they have been around for a long time.

07-16-2005, 07:32 PM
Just spent a week on my 1981 Grady in the Keys. No complaints from me, great boat.

07-16-2005, 11:46 PM
osprey the wallet will feel better on a fiberglass hull than if you hit hard enough to damage that hull thats an expensive material ropelene and not allot of places can fix it if you do happen to damage it

07-17-2005, 08:10 AM
My 1st post was just me trying to be a $marta$$...
By far it's Whaler or Grady IMHO...

07-17-2005, 08:13 AM

Better built than a whaler. :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

07-17-2005, 08:36 AM
No mention of welded aluminum boats, ALL of which are tougher and will outlast any plastic boat.

07-17-2005, 10:36 AM
amongst bertram owners the term used is "steward" because we realize the boat will be here and usable when we're not.....the small bertrams (up to 31's)will last for just about forever and have a habit of coming back to life even after decades on the hard

07-17-2005, 12:51 PM
MFG fiberglass boats, circa 1955. These guys started the trailer boat craze! :)

07-17-2005, 06:32 PM
Don't see many around here, except mine of course. Stamas Yachts have got to have a following of folks somewhere. Most people I come across have no idea that Stamas is even a boat. Does anyone see a lot of these boats in your area? I went by the factory lat summer to get any information I could on my boat and the guy brings me a copy of the original brochure describing my boat with pictures. He let me have it, I couldn't help wondering how big the closet that all the broshures he must have had was. After looking at the pictures, I realized that my boat probably didn't cost over $15000 brand new. But that was in 1969.

07-17-2005, 06:57 PM

07-17-2005, 07:02 PM
'72 whaler, also on it's 4th engine

07-17-2005, 07:02 PM
glassman - 7/16/2005 4:56 PM

Best built longest lasting boats on the market are......... "BUILT FORD TOUGH" ? ;?

we were talking about boats that dont roll over :grin: :grin: :grin:

07-17-2005, 08:10 PM

Please bear in mind that this response is simply to help answer the original question of “Best built longest lasting boats on the market are.” It is also my feeble attempt to answer your comment to my first post. This is not an attempt to make anyone mad or upset, but just to help others learn.

I would like to pass along the first three thoughts I had when I read your comment on Triumph boats.

1. When we were looking for our boat, one thought we had as we looked, was that we have a 17-year-old son. This would be his first boat, so one question was would we want a fiberglass boat bouncing off docks as he learns? Or, as I get older, we should realize that I will probably be the one hitting the dock a little harder than we should. There is a marina close to us in Florida that has a number of old “Logic’s” for their rental fleet (Logic is the name prior to being purchased and the name changed to Triumph) that are about 5 to 7 years old. Even though their customers (mostly tourists with little or no boating experience) keep hitting docks, bridges, oyster beds, sandbars, other boats, etc., these boats just keep taking the punishment. The marina sells boats, not Triumphs, yet they still have their Roplene rental fleet. After listening to the stories from the marina’s head maintenance man about their rental fleet, we can’t imagine why anyone would want a fiberglass boat. We also wanted to be able to have time to enjoy the water. So why have to make time to polish a fiberglass boat? The Triumph has to be the easiest boat to keep clean. I may be retired, but I did not retire to spend my time polishing a boat.

2. We spent the last three years studying boats and trying to determine the best boat for our family. We have determined that there is no “Perfect” boat. If there was, no one could afford it. Just as in life, every boat has pluses and minuses. Triumph can not be the one boat for everyone, but they are the boat for my family. The negative words I have heard or read about Triumphs have come from people that have not owned a Triumph. They complain that the boat does not shine, so is it a crime if I don’t want to spend time polishing a boat? They complain that the boat flexes, but if that gives me a better ride, that is easier on my body as it gets older, then I want flex. No, I do not expect everyone to agree with me.

3. And, what my first thought really was. You go and purchase two identical bats. Make them strong and stout so they will not break the first time they hit something. Now, at your expense, place a 2005 fiberglass boat comparable to mine in the driveway next to my 2005 Roplene boat. You purchased the bats, so I get to choose the one I use. You get the first swing at the hull of my boat (not the windshield or the electronics) and my job is to hit your fiberglass boat hull in the same place. You get to pay for the damage to the fiberglass, and I will NOT have any damage to my plastic, because there will not be any damage (if there is, I pay for it). There are Triumph owners from the northern part of this great country that tell of breaking the ice off their boats with baseball bats. My seventeen-year-old varsity basketball-playing son has taken a bat to a section of a Triumph hull, and at 6 ft 3 in and 217 lbs, all he could do was make his hands hurt. No damage to the hull.

Now I go back to my original request, please read what the owners say at . As you read what the owners think of their boats, please remember that there is no “Perfect” boat. You can always ask any of the owners on the site if they would purchase another Triumph. It is my strong belief that the great majority of owners will say yes.

Alec Thigpen
07-17-2005, 09:56 PM
Many wood boats are still around after most of 100 years. Most of them are sailboats, but properly cared for wood can last quite a long time. That being said, some of the first 13' Boston Whalers are still doing just fine from the early 60s, maybe late 50s, I don't remember when the first ones appeared, and will likely be useable for a few decades more.

I just sailed a regatta in a 38 year old Flying Scot, and it finished ahead of the newer boats most of the time, so it wasn't worn out yet. Fiberglass just hasn't been around long enough to really know how long it can last if the design and construction was right.

07-17-2005, 10:02 PM
Osprey all I said was when you need to repair it, It cost more to fix rather than conventional fiberglass, Its a great design and is very strong but its not indestructible, I have seen one here that the owner hit a submerged piling at a good speed and damaged the underside of the hull and he said it cost a pretty penny to fix

07-17-2005, 10:37 PM
also have to add Phoenix to the list

07-17-2005, 10:49 PM
Would be the new Pioneer 197 Sportfish ---Wouldn't it?

07-17-2005, 11:47 PM
tunatrooper - 7/16/2005 4:02 PM Old Formula 233's

Right you are, tunatrooper.* Mine is 33 years old and still in tip top condition.

You can't beat the old Bertrams, either.* I have heard the claim that there has never been a reported Bertram 31' hull failure.*

07-18-2005, 06:34 AM
The hatch covers will need to be replaced from time to time but for sheer hull strength with no cracks over the long haul, it will be hard to beat a Cape Horn--and they cost tons less than a Whaler or Grady.

07-18-2005, 08:18 AM
I got a 1984 14 foot McKee Craft and a 1985 25 foot Parker both of which are still solid as a rock and used heavily.

07-18-2005, 10:52 AM
I won't even argue that Whalers are the best built boats, especially the newest ones, but I just repowered my 84 Outrage 2 years ago, and pound the pegeebers out of it in Bogue inlet (NC) very regularly..took 3 sets of greenwater over bow 2 weeks ago....took the kids skiing on the lake with it this weekend...I tend to forget it is 21 years old...the hull is still rock solid...

07-18-2005, 11:18 AM
I know of quite a few 50 + year old Alumacrafts on their 4th or 5th engine. I would put a new plate alloy boat up against anything. The Pacific's are awesome.

07-18-2005, 11:29 AM
You may want to start here:

Proof is in the pudding ;)

07-18-2005, 02:16 PM
bertram 26

07-18-2005, 03:18 PM
Not quite as old as some of the Whalers and Berts mentioned, but close... (and still in service too).

07-18-2005, 03:33 PM
Gotta second the Sou'wester. My 1983 is in great shape.

07-18-2005, 05:24 PM
2500cc 87 hydrasport the true kevlar hull. Get soaked, but rock solid.

07-19-2005, 11:20 AM
I would have to say privateer is very much in the running, may not always be the best ride but you will always come home.

fishin' mission
07-19-2005, 08:49 PM
Boston Whaler ;)

07-19-2005, 09:18 PM
Well, I have a Scout now, but it's new so I can't tell. We have had 3 Whalers in the family 10 years, 20 years, and current one 13 years and going. All were freshwater and garage kept but really held up and sold at those ages for more than we paid for them. (except the last one of course) Not bad!

Whaler gets my vote.


John_Madison CT
07-20-2005, 07:17 AM
Nothing......I mean nothing holds its value like a Classic Whaler.

Paul Andercyk
07-20-2005, 08:46 AM
I'me not a fossil, but I still run a '72 North American. Been repowered etc, but the hull thickness and ride and dry ride are worth the classic look.

07-20-2005, 09:27 AM
The people at Privateer think they make one of the longest lasting boats. I had a problem with my stringers after 12 years of use. When I told them their response was, "our stringers don't have problems, ever, bring the boat up and we'll fix it". They fixed the stringers this spring and I'm good for another 12 years, at least. (Now to find a motor that will last for 12 years.....)

07-20-2005, 09:33 AM
bertram 31 best boat ever built . ( no I dont own one )

07-20-2005, 10:10 AM
prowlersfish - 7/20/2005 8:33 AMbertram 31 best boat ever built . ( no I dont own one )

They are bullet proof. But probably the longest lasting boat will be aluminum.

07-29-2005, 09:22 PM
I have a 1988 Henry o 18 ft it's a bull!

07-29-2005, 09:46 PM
I think SeaCrafts. Loook how many people are out there putting 30-50K in a 30 or 40 year old boat. I cant blame them, cause i would be aganist myself. :grin:

07-29-2005, 09:56 PM
how 'bout blackfins

07-29-2005, 09:58 PM
Seems to a lot of older ones running

07-29-2005, 10:14 PM
!965 27' Chris- Craft Commander .WE bought it in 75 I had it for 18 years sold it in 93 and just a few weeks ago while cruising down Hudson canal in Freeport there she was, it sure brought back memories.After we sold the Chris we bought an 86 Grady/White seafarer and that is my present boat with an 85 johnson 175 that still runs good,this boats hull is still in beautiful condition.

07-29-2005, 10:33 PM
My vote is for an 85 Contender I own the #20th hull ever made by Contender
and she looks like new. I run her hard of the coast of Miami and the Bahamas
and she holds up well.


07-30-2005, 01:06 AM
probably the Concordia's, where almost all of them are still afloat would qualify as one answer. Then the Bertrams and Chris Crafts I think. Allot of powerboat designs, came from one man's ideas - C. Raymond Hunt. Then there's Herschoff, Alden, Huckins, etc. :thumbsup:

R Paradise
07-30-2005, 08:57 AM
I would say McKee Craft there a lot of them around with 20 to 30 years on them. Rock solid and unsinkable.

Jerry :)

07-30-2005, 09:52 AM
Dad had a '66 Hatteras, what a tank. Look at all the '60's vintage Hatteras' on Yachtworld. I'd have to vote Hatteras and Whaler!

07-30-2005, 09:53 AM
Dad had a '66 Hatteras, what a tank. Look at all the '60's vintage Hatteras' on Yachtworld. I'd have to vote Hatteras and Whaler!

07-30-2005, 09:54 AM
The Coast Guard's small boat fleet has gone all welded aluminum plate. Maybe durability is a factor in their choice? Their aluminum plate vessels of choice were selected after extensive testing with other boats including--you guessed it--Boston Whaler.

07-30-2005, 10:42 AM
My 1969 13ft. Boston Whaler is still going strong.

07-30-2005, 12:17 PM
I notice that the Harbormasters around here all run Boston Whalers, and the new alu plate CG boats are very unusual looking, the has some kind of inflatable looking ring around it, I notice when they board for safety checks they don't even use fenders!

07-30-2005, 01:10 PM
Rybovich, Whiticar, O'Neil, Cubavich, Trumpy, Merritt

Wading Mark
07-30-2005, 03:22 PM
fishinnant - 7/18/2005 4:24 PM

2500cc 87 hydrasport the true kevlar hull. Get soaked, but rock solid.

That is a badass boat. It hauls with twin 200. I think I make take that boat (one in good condition) over a newer contender.

07-30-2005, 04:00 PM
Many boats hold up....just have to take care of them....

My 1969 Stamas and it's sister boat are still beating the waves here in the Virginia beach area....

My 1997 Stamas is a battleship....she has been over 100 miles off shore many times and has always brought me back eben when I had doubts...

Not the most comfortable boat in certain seas....but solid sure footed and safe...Very well constructed boat in my humble opinion.....

1997 Stamas Tarpon
2 Suzuki DF225's

Alec Thigpen
07-31-2005, 11:22 AM
boater108 - 7/30/2005 7:54 AM

The Coast Guard's small boat fleet has gone all welded aluminum plate. Maybe durability is a factor in their choice? Their aluminum plate vessels of choice were selected after extensive testing with other boats including--you guessed it--Boston Whaler.

No, they went with aluminum in order to do the most damage to fiberglass when they come alongside! :grin: No coastie is happy unless they leave having inflicted damage to the boarded boat. :grin: :grin:

Alec Thigpen
07-31-2005, 11:23 AM
That was joke, for those who take everything seriously here.

07-31-2005, 05:08 PM
SEASWIRL PAUL - 7/16/2005 5:52 AM

Bare in mind that I have limited experiece but wanted other opinions on this. Carolina classic, Regulator, Whaler, Contender, Sea Sport(never seen one in person)?

Please add names to this list and give opinions on the ones I listed.

Lets even add welded aluminum ocean boats to this list. Daigle welding, Pacific,

Id like to hear from people who have owned them and beat them for 5 or 10 years and they are still as good as day 1. :)

In order:

Bertram (Moppie series)
Spencer (pre-Rybo)
Owens & Matthews (pre-1970)
Chris Craft (wood pre-1970)
Anything steel or aluminum

07-31-2005, 05:11 PM
glassman - 7/30/2005 10:10 AM

Rybovich, Whiticar, O'Neil, Cubavich, Trumpy, Merritt

I fished last storm in Punta Cana on an old Cubavich, called R.D.A. Whatta tank!

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