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Thinking of trading 25' Contender for a 26' Glacier Bay - am I crazy ?


Thinking of trading 25' Contender for a 26' Glacier Bay - am I crazy ?

Old 12-16-2009, 08:24 PM
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Default Thinking of trading 25' Contender for a 26' Glacier Bay - am I crazy ?

Well, not really trading but selling the Contender and buying the Glacier Bay.

My wife and I run and fish 25 to 30 miles off Port Canaveral regularly and have a long travel in "no wake slow speed only" zones to get where we can run. We're in our late 50s and I've had some back issues so I need as good a ride as possible.

The Contender is an old style hull with bracket, flush deck cuddy model, in excellent condition. Rigged with F150s, it's a 48 mph WOT, 30 to 35 mph cruise boat, with decent fuel economy. For it's size class and type, it's probably one of the best riding hulls out there. It has a center console and t-top. It needs new electronics, but other than that it is well rigged for fishing. The issues I have with it:
  • it's a good riding sea boat for what it is but I think the Glacier Bay might be noticeably smoother.
  • T-top doesn't offer much shade. We're in Florida and the summer sun can be brutal. (the boat we had previously had a nice half tower top and offered considerably more shade).
  • Needs new electronics and with the Furuno FCV585 and Garmin 5212 that I want, would cost atleast $5 to 6k to install.
  • No decent head for the guests we sometimes bring out. We have a porta-pottie we occasionally bring, but it's a hassle.
  • No tackle station.
  • No crow's nest (we sight fish cobia quite a bit in the spring).
  • We've used the cuddy for overnighters a few times, but it's not great for that. We use and like the cuddy, so overall it's a plus for us.
  • Wallows and wanders at anything above a pure idle speed so it makes our transit thru the long slow speed zones a hassle.
The Glacier Bay is a 2670 cuddy model and is a newer boat. It needs to be "set up" to fish as the previous owner never used it that way. I would get to install the a new half-tower top with folding crow's nest, electronics and other fishing equipment that I want - all new stuff. It too would be powered with F150s, which I believe are the preferred engine for this boat, and would make it a ~40mph WOT, 28-30mph cruise boat. Pros I see/hope:
  • Nice big top providing much better shade.
  • Bigger/nicer bed in the cuddy and a real head. Cuddy is much bigger. Could more comfortably overnight.
  • All new equipment & electronics, set-up the way I want.
  • Faster no wake speed so hopefully our transit time thru the slow speed zones would be shorter. Hopefully much better tracking.
  • Hopefully fuel economy would be as good/close to what we get with the Contender.
  • Crow's nest to spot those cobes.
  • Much more spacious cockpit for trolling fishing (which we do quite a bit of).
  • Nice front deck for throwing the cast net (Contender has a decent one too, but doesn't have the nice high rail).
I can make the money work on this trade so it's not a real factor. I've heard the Glacier Bay has a few handling "quirks" but I'm and experienced boater and feel I could adjust.

Any comments or advice on this one guys ? Thanks
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Old 12-16-2009, 09:13 PM
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Lol, I'm not sure what the issue is? The way you're going to set up the GB, it's the way to go. The ride of a power cat is absolutely superb. There's always a debate about it between single hull and dual hull guys, but the fact is, you'll be more comfortable more often with a cat than not. As far as the handling goes, you...like me...aren't too worried about making a ton of hardover turns where you're used to your weight rolling inside, instead of outside.

You get to set it up your way. The creature comforts are what you need and want. Nowhere did you say your wife was opposed to the new boat. You're in your 50's, I am too, if you want a Cadillac ride on the water and can afford it, then you deserve it and go get it.

It sounds to me like you'll be smiling the whole time with the GB, not as much with the present vessel. Be good to yourself and your wife. Questionable days won't be questionable anymore. There's nothing like the ride of a power cat.
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Old 12-17-2009, 05:00 AM
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Default I am 57 and a cat ride can be a pain in the back also?

The only cat that seems to be living up to the reputation is billy at freeman cats who is on tht all the time.
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Old 12-17-2009, 05:52 AM
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We have owned a GB 2670 for 5 years now, and have been very happy with it overall. The ride lives up to all the hype, it is almost neurotically overbuilt, and very seaworthy. We have made Bahamas trips to as far out as Andros and the Exumas. The cabin is very comfortable for a couple to weekend in.

Our real world best cruising speed and fuel economy are not quite living up to claims. With Honda 150's, our best cruise is 22-24 mph @4200 at about 1.75 SMPG. Slowing to 19-20 mph @3700 RPM, we can get about 2 SMPG. All this is with bottom paint and a pretty heavy load (like 4 people, 6 tanks, dive and fishing gear, etc.). One thing about most all cats is they have rather poor weight carrying ability compared to an equivalent size monohull. Both speed and ride suffer when you get too heavy.

You will like the way the boat tracks at all speeds. I hardly ever use the autopilot, the boat stays where it is pointed so well. It took me about a year to really figure out the differences in the handling, but once you get it wired it is a very sweet little boat in all sea conditions.

Will you be trailering the boat? Watch out for overhead clearance if you are, they sit REALLY high on the trailer.
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Old 12-17-2009, 06:00 AM
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I've logged more hours fishing a cat than I have fishing a mono. I own a mono.

With that being said, if you can afford a cat, there is no good reason not to. IMHO a 26' Cat is equal to a 30' mono. I've fished a 21' cat that handled like a 23' mono and I fish a 27' cat now that runs like a 30+' mono.

They aren't the most efficient boats in the world, but they really do live up to the hype.

I've run Sea-Cats and the 27 is a WorldCat SF27.
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Old 12-17-2009, 06:23 AM
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You'll lose a litlle room and a lot of speed neither of which may be issues to you. The GB is a well built, good riding boat. Probably the biggest differences between the cat and mono hulls I have owned is the cats are less efficient and come at a cost premium. If you understand the trade offs/benefits of a cat and it fits your style and use you will be very happy with the GB. Cats are neither as good nor as bad as you will see in opinions on THT.
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Old 12-17-2009, 06:25 AM
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I love my GB 2680. I find myself laughing sometimes because of how it's just slicing right though chop that would be catching the chine of any mono hull. The only sea that brings out quirkiness is a beam sea at the right interval. Because it's a dispacement hull it does not develop any upward lift to creat stability at speed. In a beam sea it can rock almost as if you are at trolling speed. There is no danger and no bow steer so it's just a matter of holding on and tieing down your cooler and bucket.

Go for it, your back will thank you.

The above performance numbers are low? I cruise at 26.5 knots at 4300 at 16.5 gph flat water, 17.5gph rough with 150 HPDIs. I'm 22 knots at 3800 and top out at 35+- knots at 5450.

Last edited by jbg108; 12-17-2009 at 12:17 PM.
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Old 12-17-2009, 12:08 PM
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Old 12-17-2009, 01:00 PM
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Do it. You will never look back. There is no comparison. jbg108's comments are dead on--and he knows boats. Of all that boats I've had the privilege of owning, including a 48' sportfisher and two new Tiara's (granted, not the best riding boats in their class), along with the boats I've run, none of them hold a candle to my GB 260 when it comes to ride and dryness.
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Old 12-17-2009, 01:13 PM
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As someone above pointed out, it's a displacement hull, therefore, there is a big difference in the upper RPM/MPH ranges. Other than that, these are double-hulled boats, so they can take a real beating. I was looking at the 22 recently - two 115 yamahas each with its own fuel tank - nice setup.
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Old 12-17-2009, 01:27 PM
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Once you go cat, it's hard to go back. I've ridden some World Cats, Sea Cats and own a ProKat. The GB is a displacement cat, so it sits deeper in the water than what I'm used to - the Prokat is a planing cat and gets up on top and rides. I love it best in a light chop - cuts through smooth as butter. At slow speeds (trolling and such), I tend to get some sneeze in head seas, but otherwise a very dry ride. Just the nature of the beast. Sounds like a good boat for your needs.

I don't overnight on mine very often. My biggest complaint is the bunk layout across the beam of the boat, rather than in line from fore to aft. Makes it tough for whoever gets the forward bunk to step over the person on lower bunk when nature calls in the middle of the night.

Also - take heed to the earlier poster's mention of how high it sits on the trailer. I haven't torn anything off my T-top yet, but I have taken out a few telephone lines in Mexico! Ooooops! Maybe next time they'll string 'em high enough so at least a semi can get under them! My buddy with a smaller ProKat caught a wire coming out of a Pemex station and snapped a telephone pole off in the middle of an intersection. The Mexican police took his boat to "boat jail" until the insurance adjuster arrived and settled everything.
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Old 12-17-2009, 01:44 PM
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Take a look too at the C-Dory TomCat TC255. Mine is great in a heavy chop! Good accommodations along with a cockpit with fish boxes built in.

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Old 12-17-2009, 02:01 PM
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one other point that is nice is that the GB can coast along at 5,6 ,7 ,8 etc. miles per hr without plowing the water in slower speed zones.
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Old 12-17-2009, 02:10 PM
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Own a 32' Donzi. Have fished a 26' GB several times. I like the speed of Donzi for the long rides, but the GB is an amazing ride. Rides like much bigger boat. Eats up 2-4' seas like nothing else.
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Old 12-17-2009, 02:46 PM
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I owned a 2670 GB. I fished it from OC, MD to HI, NC. I could never get used to the feel of the cat hull. I ended up selling it 4 years ago and bought a 248XF Albemarle. I've been completely satisfied with my current boat. The GB was definitely a well built boat, but I've never regreted selling her and going with the mono hull. It's just what you feel comfortable running.

Atlantic Abby
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Old 12-17-2009, 06:27 PM
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Thanks for the replies and great input so far.

The GB that I'm looking at has bottom paint. Anybody have first hand knowledge of what speeds and fuel consumption (hand calculated and GPS) that I'll obtain with the GB rigged with F150s ? I'll be having the engines installed on the boat, so if the deal goes thru, I'll be asking for advice on the right props and whether I need the perma-trim planes.

Thanks again and keep the input coming.
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Old 12-17-2009, 06:47 PM
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No perma trims.

With F150's at 4200-4300 rpm you will be real close to 30 mph, 17 gph.

I can check on the prop size monday.

That is no bottom paint and center console with t-top.

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Old 12-17-2009, 07:00 PM
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I gotta say I like the permatrims. I believe they increase the range of trim. But I do have a 2260 not a 2670.
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Old 12-17-2009, 08:10 PM
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Maybe its me, but when I ride in a cat the hull response to shock/vibration of waves feels too random. It throws me off. There's no rhythm to the waves as in a mono hull.
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Old 12-17-2009, 08:40 PM
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Originally Posted by TopCat View Post
One thing about most all cats is they have rather poor weight carrying ability compared to an equivalent size monohull. Both speed and ride suffer when you get too heavy.
This is becuase of the narrow beam of "american" catamarans. Such design yields a narrow tunnel. With a heavy load (boat rides lower and reduce the tunnel's overall size) it loses its effectiveness in channeling water.

Since you (and just your wife) are only fishing (not diving - no tanks). Chances are the tunnel's design limitation will not affect you much, if any.
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