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Old 05-02-2005, 07:53 PM
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Default My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

As some of you remember, I recently took possession of a Nautic Bay 2200. I just returned from a 5 day fishing trip to Topsail Island in NC and would like to give my review of this boat based on the options I had at the time (the dealer screwed some things up-see my earlier post on this issue). Also, I've never ridden in any other bay boat so everything will be based solely on this experience-no comparison. We traveled the intercoastal waterway, fished some bays/inlets and went 3 miles out into big blue during a calm day (1-2 ft seas). 2 of the days were quite windy (25mph+).

Boat: Nautic Bay 2200 (red)
Motor: Yamaha 200 HPDI
Trailer: Wesco Aluminum dual axle with surge brakes.
Options: Minn Kota Riptide AP with Copilot (70lbs but I ordered 80lbs), SS prop (19M), Bimini top, Dual Pro charger, Hi Pressure wash down, Lowrance LMS 337C (but ordered 332), Bike Seat with Pro pole, Backrest insert for leaning post, water pressure gauge, trim gauge, fuel/water separator, boat cover, spare tire.

Price out the door: $31,700.

Dealership: Chatlee Marine in Sanford. I had a rather unpleasant experience with them during delivery, with many options either not installed or the incorrect part (e.g. 70lbs troll instead of 80lb). See my previous post if you want more details. But they have promised to make everything right. I think the problem is that they just move too many boats per year and things just slip through the cracks....Though my delivery wasn't as I expected I would still recommend them.

Top Speed WOT: 53MPH (GPS) with 4 average size adults, full tank (60gals), full 94qt ice chest and gear. I may have the wrong prop as I expected a little better top end, but the hole shot is superb.

The Ride: The boat has a great ride and very dry even on windy days (we never got sprayed once). It cuts through chop very well and is very smooth. I only hit one big wave from a wake and it took it well. I can't comment on rough seas as it was smooth pretty smooth the day we went out. The HPDI gives great acceleration, and really smashes you against the leaning post when you punch it! After 5 days of fishing I still had 1/2 tank full left (holds 60gals). I know it gets great mileage but don't have actual numbers as I was still learning how to use my GPS. The boat feels very solid and is quite stable. the HPDI is extremly quiet even at WOt (we could talk at normal levels and hear each other) and made absolutely no smoke.

The good:
The ride is great and the boat is very maneuverable. With trim down it gets on plane in about 1 boat length with almost no bow rise. This boat is VERY fishable even with 4 people. Lots of walking room and casting deck space and gobs of storage. we didn't have to leave any gear exposed--all was storable.Gobs of rod storage. Two people could fish from the large front deck easily. The leaning post is comfortable, esp with the back rest option. I like the removable windshield and removable stainless grap post. The Minn Kota AP is awesome! the copilot remote feature is extremely useful and in fact, I used it exclusively instead of the foot pedal. There is a storage compartment under the leaning post seat that is very handy. I also like the foot space under the console. The top of the dash has a lip that offers storage without things sliding off. She looks great! I received many compliments at the boat ramp. The jump seats are great and a nice place to ride (when the bimini is removed). The water pressure gauge is a great option. I hit some shallow water once which bogged the lower unit in sand and the pee hole stopped peeing. Luckily the water pressure gauge told me things were OK. Once out in deeper water, I stopped the motor and restarted and it started peeing again. The rear rod holders are great for trolling, as are the rocket launchers. The fish box is extremely handy and serves as a step up to the front deck. All openings (rod holders, pedastal seat holes etc... are equipped with drains). She has circuit breakers instead of fuses. The Sea Star steering is great and the wheel tilts. I love the grab knob on the steering wheel.

The bad:
The dash switches are extremely easy to trip accidentally. they are very flat and move at the slightest touch. 3 days in a row I went out to the boat to find 1 or 2 switches tripped that I didn't realize. The lights are hard to see during the day. The trim switch at the front of the boat is easy to bump accidentally while fishing from the bike seat (which is a great option by the way). After a rain storm I noticed that my gauges are fogging up with condensation. The cover to the radio box is very loose and doesn't engage that well. The locks on the pull rings for the storage compartments often swing into the lock position while using the latch and I frequently had to reposition the lock tab to close them. The non-skid deck surface (which is great) is extremely difficult to clean. The boat floor already looks like it's 10 years old..I didn't try bleach yet, just scrubbing with a stiff brush and soap. The tiny non-skid diamonds have a rough top surface that traps dirt like you wouldn't believe. The space behind the leaning post is tight and you really have to walk on the rear deck to get to the other side. The livewells don't have a pump out feature. You have to unscrew the tube to drain them. There isn't a temp gauge on the dash (at least on mine). The rear jump seats can't be used with the bimini top installed (though Nautic Star was supposed to have redesigned it to allow this). After a hard rain storm there was water in all of the storage compartments (not sure if that's normal for most boats). The horn has an obnoxious tone and blares right from the side of the console on the driver side.

Summary: I absolutely love this boat, as did everyone that I took fishing. If I had to do it all over, I would probably get a little more motor...maybe even 250hp (the max rating). Don't get me wrong, 53MPH is fast but when I'm cruising 25+ miles down the intercoastal, I'd like to cruise at 50 at much less than WOT. Cost was the main factor for going with the 200, plus the issues that some have had with the 250 HPDI. In hindsight, it would have been worth the extra money. the 70lb troll motor was great, but I'll be anxious to get it replaced with the 80lb I ordered. It could really use it. I also wish I had gotten the Yamaha digital gauge package. It wasn't an option, but I'm sure they could have figured out a way to install it. The analog gauges would be OK if they didn't fog so much. But I like the features of the Yamaha package. For me, a temp gauge is a must! Also I would highly recommend using boat bumpers when docking. I already have some scratches in the paint from bumping against a wooden dock. I don't think it's clear coated (if they even do that on boats). Mechanically the boat was perfect--no problems found with any of the components.

I apologize for the length of this post, but I wanted to include as much detail as possible (probably still forgeting something). I hope others find this useful when making bay boat decisions. I truly feel I made the right decision in buying this boat. Only time will tell about reliability and resale. I plan to keep her a very long time so resale value isn't important to me. I'm glad I took a chance at being among the first people to own a Nautic Bay 2200!

rcman

P.S. Once I figure out how to post pics I will....but it looks exactly like the one on the NS website.
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Old 05-02-2005, 10:09 PM
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Default RE: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

P.S.

Sorry.....my bad....I just remembered that I was getting 53MPH from the Lowrance speed gauge...my GPS speed was only 51.

Also, I forgot to include RPM. I was only hitting about 5100 RPM at WOT. That seemed a bit low to me. I figured I should hit at least 5400. Right?

sorry if this addition screws up anyone who already read this.....

rcman
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Old 05-02-2005, 10:36 PM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

1) You're right.. the switches DO trip easily, and the little lights showing that they are on are easy to miss in the daylight. At the end of every trip I turn my Perko connector switch to "off" so the starting batteries are disconnected from everything... no problems because of this... otherwise, I would have definitely run the batteries down once or twice.

2) If the gauges are fogging up, they weren't installed/sealed correctly.. take it back and let the dealer fix it.

3) I can't say I've had as much trouble cleaning the deck as you describe.... BUT... I'm pretty fanatical about keeping it clean, even during the day fishing. Put a coat of woody wax or other deck wax on it, and make sure that everybody coming aboard wipes/cleans their feet on a towel as they get on. Also, stop and hose/brush it down during the day if you somehow manage to get lots of mud or blood on the deck (like we have during long days of fishing). Those little diamonds may hold dirt well, but they do a GREAT job of making sure you don't slip off your feet and bust your butt when the weather gets rough, or when the deck has lots of fish blood on it.

4) You must not have a "track" for the Bimini top to slide on.... get a pair of the "track" type attachments for the top to slide back and forth, and you will be able to use the jump seats even when the top is attached and not being used (folded down).

5) water in your storage compartments is NOT normal. They're not sealed well or something. The only time I ever get water in the storage compartments is when I power spray around the lids during cleanup with the hose at the end of the day... and even then, usually VERY little... but I've also taken off the seals/gaskets and re-installed them with new silicone adhesive... so maybe they seal better than yours. Whoops... if you're talking about the storage compartments under the rear seats.. those do get wet (not sure where the water comes from... around the jump seats probably... I use them for storing the castnet, etc.

6) Unscrewing the livewell drain tube is a pain in the butt (as is installing it), BUT.... at least you can be assured that it's not going to pop out of place during rough water, and leave you with a bunch of dead bait after you lose all the water in the livewell (Happened to us on a buddies boat once). It SUCKS to go to a lot of trouble getting bait only to lose it because the tube won't stay in place as you ride to your destination.

7) The space behind the leaning post is IMO useless as a walkway.. too narrow. We use it to store smaller tackle boxes, soft coolers/lunch bags, etc.

The horn is loud and obnoxious... but.. LOL.. it works.... and it's GREAT for scaring the crud out of the kids every now and then...

Luis

ps. great report!

pps.. EDIT> With a full load of 4 people, and full gas, that sounds about right for top end. Your motor is supposed to turn between 4500 and 5500 RPM. I'd bet that with 15 gal of gas, and 2 guys (light load) you'd be turning right around 5500 RPM. So I'd say you're propped right. If memory serves correctly, max HP is right around 5100-5200 RPM anyway.
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Old 05-02-2005, 10:38 PM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

NICE HOPE YOU ENJOY YOUR BOAT!
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Old 05-02-2005, 10:38 PM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

NICE HOPE YOU ENJOY YOUR BOAT!
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Old 05-03-2005, 06:03 PM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

Quote:
pps.. EDIT> With a full load of 4 people, and full gas, that sounds about right for top end. Your motor is supposed to turn between 4500 and 5500 RPM. I'd bet that with 15 gal of gas, and 2 guys (light load) you'd be turning right around 5500 RPM. So I'd say you're propped right. If memory serves correctly, max HP is right around 5100-5200 RPM anyway.
Hmm...Maybe I'll take her out by myself and see what happens. The problem will be trying to get down to 15 gals!!!! the darn thing just doesn't use much gas. But what if, even with a light load I still can't get above 5100 rpm??? Wouldn't that suggest I'm not propped right?
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Old 05-03-2005, 08:40 PM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

Great review!

Thanks!!!!

Gary
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Old 05-03-2005, 09:17 PM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

I love the 22 ft nautic star. Hope to see the co sell plenty of them.
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Old 05-03-2005, 10:17 PM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

Try the Yamaha 21M for your prop. That is what is on my NS 22 with a Yamaha 200 OX66. Same hole shot you describe and 2 people, just over a half tank I get 5400 RPM and GPS @ 53. Just a little lower rpm and speed with full tank. By the way what hole is your motor mounted on from top down---just curious
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Old 05-04-2005, 10:23 AM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

RCman, if you're running a 21" pitch prop, you're probably propped right... but like berry mentions above, it could be that your motor could stand to be mounted in a higher position... try it with a light load first though, and let us know what results you get... I'd think that losing 3-4 hundred pounds of load ought to get you another 2-3 hundred RPM..... If you're getting 5400 RPM or better lightly loaded, you're propped right.

Luis
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Old 05-04-2005, 12:24 PM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

It's mounted in the third hole from the top....so looks like only one more hole left if I want it higher.

thanks everyone for the advice. As soon as I'm out again with a lighter load I'll repost my figures. At the end of the day, a few MPH top end wont make much difference to me....but if I could run at say 500 RPM less in the 45 MPH range, that would be nice....

rcman
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Old 05-07-2005, 08:58 PM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

OK...so my wife and I went fishing today. Two persons (250lbs total) almost no gear (4 rods 1 tackle box) and 30gal fuel. At WOT I could only muster about 5200 RPMs and 52 MPH (GPS)....so I'm thinking I need to try a different prop. Does that make sense?
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Old 05-09-2005, 10:58 AM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

I checked mine this weekend... Mine is also mounted at the third hole from the top... only one hole higher to go.

I can't remember now... what brand of prop are you running? I'd try (if you can before buying) a 21" pitch SS Yamaha prop... if that's not what you're already running. If performance is no better with that, I'd say you need to move down to a 19" pitch prop... one with a lot of cupping.

Luis
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Old 05-09-2005, 02:26 PM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

Great review rcman - I agree with just about everything except I did get pretty wet the last time I went out. It was pretty windy though. Other notes:

- My gauges fog as well, but only the smaller fuel and battery gauges. Per Tightwads message, maybe Chatlee doesn't install them right.

- The livewell drain is a pain to get in / out.... I put a couple bluefish in there to keep them alive / fresh and decided to release them later..... forgot my dip net to get them out... had to unscrew the dang thing with those teeth with fins swimming around in there... somehow I escaped w/o losing any fingers.... agree with Tightwads tho... once you get the dang thing in, you won't have to worry about it coming lose
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Old 05-09-2005, 08:16 PM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

I'm running a yamaha saltwater series prop size 19M (so 19" pitch?). I also talked to a prop expert at Chatlee and he explained to me that actually by going to a 21" prop, I'm going in the wrong direction if my RPMs are only 5100. he said I actually need to go DOWN in pitch to say a 17". As you can probably tell, I'm fairly prop ignorant. My instinct would have told me that the motor turns at a given RPM and by going to a larger pitch I get more distance for each turn, ergo, faster top end.....but I guess a smaller pitch allows the motor to spin faster and maybe faster top end. So there's an optimal size..but my gosh...I would need like 5 props at once to test them all, otherwise I make many trips back and forth to the dealer. Maybe I'll just stick with what I've got....esp since my dealer is 60 mins away.

Fishinwolf, When you say you got wet, where were you sitting? From the drivers seat, we boated about 40 miles down the intercoastal waterway with 25 MPH head wind and light chop and nary a drop landed on us. I didn't ask the guy who was sitting in front if he got wet. Were you offshore?

rcman
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Old 05-09-2005, 09:54 PM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

ok... I didn't catch where you said you had a 19" prop already (I was thinking you already had a 21" pitch prop) ... he's right, your next try would be with a 17" pitch prop. That would give you another 300-400 rpm and maybe pick up your top speed a smidge.... or it might stay about the same, but you'd get better acceleration. I think you're probably already near optimal top end speed with that motor mounted in that position (although I'm surprised... I would have thought that the 200 HPDI would have gotten you to at least 54).

oh yeah... you won't get wet in a headwind or a tail wind.... only when the wind is blowing hard and you're running perpendicular to it, or quartering into it... none of the bay boats that I've been in is immune to a wet ride in 15-20 (or more) knot winds from the side.

Luis
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Old 05-11-2005, 09:20 PM
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Default Re: My review of the Nautic Star 2200 Bay

Hmm...maybe I'll just stick with the 19" pitch. I guess the upside is, I'll never have to worry about redlining the motor too much!

thanks for all the advice.
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