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Cabin Cruiser for Pleasure and Fishing?

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Cabin Cruiser for Pleasure and Fishing?

Old 09-18-2020, 03:48 PM
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Default Cabin Cruiser for Pleasure and Fishing?

Hi everyone. First, I am new to boating and to this forum, so all eye-rolls are fully warranted and appreciated. Second, I am fully aware of the financial aspects of purchasing a boat - that research was an enlightening experience. My specific question, and I'll try to reduce the situation as best I can. My wife and I have wanted a boat for 35 years - 3 kids did an outstanding job of slowing that motion, but now kid 3 is a senior in college! We would be boating in Lake Erie, and docking/storing, no trailer. Want to be able to go to the islands and spend the night comfortably, but also want to be able to fish. Not charter boat fishing intensity, but would like to get after the perch and walleye with my sons. Looking at something in the 27+ feet, 10+ beam, 2 inboards space. Lots of boats fit the bill - except the fishing part. The Sea Ray 290 Amberjack is one that would seem to work. Would very much like your opinions in this space. Looking to go used, and most comfortable around $50K, but could go to $60K if it's the right answer. Of course, spending less is always cool. Appreciate your patience with the newbie. For example, if I overlooked the 10,000 threads on this topic, you can just point that out and go on with your day :-). Thank you in advance for any guidance you are able to provide.

Thanks,

John
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Old 09-18-2020, 04:00 PM
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John, welcome to THT.

Congrats on successfully raising three children to adulthood.

Good luck with your research, your purchase, and your introduction to the joys of boating and ownership.

We owned the boat in my signature for 17yrs. It was purchased in January 2019 by two brothers-in-law and is used in the Florida Keys and on Lake Erie. They are from the Akron area.
Old 09-18-2020, 04:18 PM
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Not sure how youd manage fishing out of that sea ray.
The engine bay in these smaller inboards is a nightmare. No access. An older tiara would work for you. Or pursuit.

These arent local, just to give you some photos to look at.

https://www.yachtworld.com/boats/200...-open-3599194/

https://www.boattrader.com/boat/1999...press-7589847/
Old 09-18-2020, 04:57 PM
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The Amberjack will do just fine for what you want. Hope it has a vacuflush
Anything with twin gas engines in that size range is going to be tight no matter the brand
The 310 might suit your needs better. I think they are v drives

Last edited by Thalasso; 09-18-2020 at 05:06 PM.
Old 09-18-2020, 05:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Thalasso View Post
The Amberjack will do just fine for what you want. Hope it has a vacuflush
Anything with twin gas engines in that size range is going to be tight no matter the brand
The 310 might suit your needs better. I think they are v drives
Thank you!
Old 09-18-2020, 05:31 PM
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Awesome, appreciate it. My wife likes the Tiara!
Old 09-18-2020, 05:34 PM
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Thank you ocnslr - it's almost surreal, the kids being adults now. And I'm going in the other direction, wanting a boat like a 12 year old wants a bike :-)
Old 09-18-2020, 06:04 PM
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Craigslist, located in Mentor Ohio , 31 Tiara that has 454 Crusaders with 1100 hours. Looks like it was a dock queen and not fished. Under 30,000 and that's a steal. Was just passing through Cleveland moving a 36 Hatteras and spent the night at the county marina , far east side of town ,right next to the east outlet of break wall. Saw a very nice Bertram 33 for sale owned by a older gent and in great shape as well price was in the low 30s. For sale sign on window ,could not find it listed anywhere. There are a couple other Bert 33s for sale in that area but they are beat up with soft spots .As you noted the wife will like the Tiara as it is more wine and dine than the fishing machine Bert. Buddy has been flipping 27 beat Tiaras for 25,000 and up. So that's a great price and I would be running down there and throwing a deposit down after agreeing to a price based on it passing a survey.

Last edited by mr 88; 09-18-2020 at 06:09 PM.
Old 09-18-2020, 06:16 PM
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How much of a do it yourself person are you? If you are not against something a bit older, but a good solid boat that might do what you are looking for I would look at something like the Chris Craft Commander 27. It is a traditional design and has a real trunk cabin which is bright and airy, you don’t feel like you are underground or in a submarine like so many of today’s designs.
It has a real cockpit which is quite ‘fishable’.

Last edited by NedLloyd; 09-18-2020 at 06:26 PM.
Old 09-18-2020, 06:24 PM
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So you all are awesome, but then you already knew that :-). I'm a bit odd, I have laid all new flooring in my house, finished the basement including electrical (all but the drywall, that's an art form), but I have some paranoia about working on engines - but I expect I could get into it the same way I did working on the house. rm 88, appreciate the leads!
Old 09-18-2020, 06:45 PM
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Tiara 31, 33, 36, 37, take you pick...
Old 09-18-2020, 06:58 PM
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When I read the thread title the Sea Ray Amberjack was the first one that I thought of. I think it would suit you well as long as you are looking for a cabin cruiser that will serve as an okay fishing boat.
Old 09-18-2020, 07:09 PM
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Fountain 33 SFC, perfect fit for you.
Old 09-18-2020, 07:14 PM
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I think the next question you should ask yourself is if you want a convertible or express style boat. Some very significant pros and cons to each. If you’re not sure, do a search here in THT and take in all the insight this topic has brought over the years. Being in Michigan, I’d assume you’d lean towards the convertible style of boat for the added living space during the cold mornings/nights; however the lower helm of an express might be desired if it is just you and your wife who are handling the boat.

Tiara makes a quality boat. I’d find a well kept 3600 in your price range personally. Too big? I believe they also have a 33, 31, and a 29.

Luhrs 32 open or tournament has a nice layout and many have proven to be reliable boats

quite a few other late 80s/early 90s sport fish boats out there for relatively little money. A strong word of caution on any of these though....find one that has been properly maintained and plan on a significant amount of time and $$$ spent on keeping it up. Old boats have constant needs. Don’t get sucked in to the low price of some of these that haven’t been kept up well. They will end up costing much more than the ones that a great maintenance history, not to mention all the time and frustration involved with deferred maintenance. Once you have found “The One”, spend the $$ for an engine and boat survey from reputable sources. They will help you spot any issues with the boat and can potentially save you a ton of money or from making a big mistake. There are a lot of these older boats out there on the market. A lot have been on the market for a long time and have been neglected, although there are a few that pop up that have been loved and well maintained. Figure out what exact make/model you want and be patient for the right one to present itself. Remember that there is no such thing as a cheap boat.
Old 09-18-2020, 07:15 PM
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Whenever you decide to look at a boat and like it enough to make an offer, make sure that offer is contingent upon a satisfactory sea (?, lake?) trial and hull and motors survey and then hire a professional to do the survey(s). It will be money well spent no matter the outcome of the survey(s).
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Old 09-18-2020, 07:16 PM
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I've seen some decent deals on Luhrs Aluras. As long as high speed isnt a must have, these would fit the bill pretty well.
Old 09-18-2020, 08:35 PM
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I’d suggest a Wellcraft 330 coastal. We are considering putting ours on the market and would be within your price range.

Checks all your boxes. We regularly fish, not hardcore but do inshore and offshore trips as well as weekend on it often. Sleeps 4 comfortably or 2 very comfortably.
Old 09-19-2020, 03:09 AM
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Stickbo mentioned wellcraft. I agree with him. Wellcraft 26. Want to fish have fun over night fishing boat and run a boat that won't cost you so much think smaller lenght.
I had a 31 fountain loved it but it was more boat than I needed. Almost bought a 26 wellcraft before christmas last year took the boat out for a test ride, boy said it would hit 45 with a 5.7 motor I didnt' believe him. We both were wrong. it hit 47. Best part was at cruse it was getting 3 mpg. That boat rode so high on the water was like driving a caddy.
Was also perfect for turning the ass end into a fishing boat , but had a bad electrical issue so I didn't get it.
Three things you want with a boat. Be able to afford it as to fuel. Be able to trailer it 24/7 and something that fits your needs. You can add a small generator on that boat on the front like I did, spend the night on it. tolit shower, stove and set it up easy for fun fishing. Would not take much to add a hard top on it I added a foot and a half larger top to my boat and a back awning, but I went with a walkaround fishing boat. Lot of things you can do with that 26, have a blast, and won't cost you to much to enjoy it. Find one with the dueo prop set up. That jump up on top the water long enough to handle waves, and that one MPG stuff gets old quick.
100 gal tank, you can go 65 miles offshore if you want fish all day and never worry. I use to burn around 75 gal with the fountain that far out troll all day long. Inshore striper fishing wellcraft 26 might burn 25 to 30 for all day fun and you won't have over 20 grand in a good used one.
.


Old 09-19-2020, 05:24 AM
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People can't read. OP said he wanted twin inboards , 27 ' + , no trailer , wanted to fish a little bit ,spend weekends along with the most important point, keep the wife happy.. He is on Lake Erie , is not going offshore and probably does not want to buy a boat from the Atlantic coast . CC on Erie is not going to cut it , Most boats on the Great Lakes are low hours for the year they were built , engines are not hammered from constant 80 + miles trips off shore and if maintained require very little upkeep regardless of it being a 1986 or 2010. You will find the occasional Ocean Yachts , Luhrs , Hatteras, Tollycraft and Bertram. But the most common decent boat on the Great Lakes ,especially in his area is a Tiara that are built in Michigan.. There is a very nice 80's Tollycraft listed in the Detroit area 34 ' , they do get big money, built in the NW and are great hulls. The guy is loaned out at his asking price of 47,000 and won't budge off it because of that. If it was me and considering you have 3 kids as well, who will be going out with you with there friends once in awhile I would be looking at 30-36' . It wont cost you much more to operate than a 27 and you won't be out looking for a bigger boat in a few years. You will get used to the size and how to handle it just as quickly as you would a 27' boat. Take a Boaters Safety course , get a survey and have fun.

Last edited by mr 88; 09-19-2020 at 09:21 AM.
Old 09-19-2020, 07:44 AM
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Originally Posted by mr 88 View Post
People can't read. OP said he wanted twin inboards , 27 ' + , no trailer , wanted to fish a little bit ,spend weekends along withe the most important point, keep the wife happy.. He is on Lake Erie , is not going offshore and probably does not want to buy a boat from the Atlantic coast . CC on Erie is not going to cut it , Most boats on the Great Lakes are low hours for the year they were built , engines are not hammered from constant 80 + miles trips off shore and if maintained require very little upkeep regardless of it being a 1986 or 2010. You will find the occasional Ocean Yachts , Luhrs , Hatteras, Tollycraft and Bertram. But the most common decent boat on the Great Lakes ,especially in his area is a Tiara that are built in Michigan.. There is a very nice 80's Tollycraft listed in the Detroit area 34 ' , they do get big money, built in the NW and are great hulls. The guy is loaned out at his asking price of 47,000 and won't budge off it because of that. If it was me and considering you have 3 kids as well, who will be going out with you with there friends once in awhile I would be looking at 30-36' . It wont cost you much more to operate than a 27 and you won't be out looking for a bigger boat in a few years. You will get used to the size and how to handle it just as quickly as you would a 27' boat. Take a Boaters Safety course , get a survey and have fun.
Closed bow is a must on Erie
SeaRay 310 with Radar

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