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Can't Decide- 20, 22, or 24 foot CC

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Can't Decide- 20, 22, or 24 foot CC

Old 06-18-2015, 08:18 AM
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Default Can't Decide- 20, 22, or 24 foot CC

Hey Guys,

Getting ready to buy my next boat. Looking at the different options on Center Consoles and I really can't decide on what I really need. Between boats like the SeaHunt 211,225,235/Key West 203,219,239FS.

I like the space of the larger boats and have a V8 F150 so I can tow any of them. I don't fish offshore but might start. All of my boating is trailer boating in Central Florida, mostly Harris Chain lakes with trips to Tampa and New Smyrna occasionally. Also St. Johns and Silver Glen. Maybe a trip to the Keys every other year. I do all the work and single hand putting in and taking out. Also it is generally just two of us with an occasional guest.

The smaller boats would be easier to trailer, tow, and put in and out of the water. Also more fuel efficient. Bigger boats would ride better and have better offshore range, lots more room as well. Between the boats I am looking at the price isn't the deciding factor. I am taking a hit selling my last boat because I bought wrong. I want this to be my final boat for a while. Not too big or small.

So what is the general consensus? Once into the 20-24 range is there really that much difference in trailering and towing? I guess my only real concern is if I get the 23 footer it will be too much to deal with. I have found that the easier it is to tow and launch the boat, the more it gets used. Mostly just want a good do it all coastal boat for exploring, cruising and sandbar trips that has enough room but is easy to trailer. Thanks for any input.

Last edited by billy32; 06-18-2015 at 08:29 AM.
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Old 06-18-2015, 08:22 AM
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Pioneer 197 Sportfish Much better than the ones mentioned, very well built, rides and fishes like a much larger boat and best customer support you could ask for.
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Old 06-18-2015, 08:23 AM
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Originally Posted by billy32 View Post
Hey Guys,

Getting ready to buy my next boat. Looking at the different options on Center Consoles and I really can't decide on what I really need. Between boats like the SeaHunt 211,225,235/Key West 203,219,239FS.

I like the space of the larger boats and have a V8 F150 so I can tow any of them. I don't fish offshore but might start. All of my boating is trailer boating in Central Florida, mostly Harris Chain lakes with trips to Tampa and New Smyrna occasionally. Also St. Johns and Silver Glen. Maybe a trip to the Keys every other year. I do all the work and single hand putting in and taking out. Also it is generally just two of us with an occasional guest.

The smaller boats would be easier to trailer, tow, and put in and out of the water. Also more fuel efficient. Bigger boats would ride better and have better offshore range, lots more room as well. Between the boats I am looking at the price isn't the deciding factor. I am taking a hit selling my last boat because I bought wrong. I want this to be my final boat for a while. Not too big or small.

So what is the general consensus? Once into the 20-24 range is there really that much difference in trailering and towing? I guess my only real concern is if I get the 23 footer it will be too much to deal with. I have found that the easier it is to tow and launch the boat, the more it gets used. Mostly just want a good do it all coastal boat for exploring, cruising and sandbar trips that has enough room but is easy to trailer. Thanks for any input.

I went from a 20 to a 25. honestly, towing and getting in/out of the water is not different. I can say after being on 22-24' boats that at 24' there is a world of difference in the ride and range that you have. I'm considering selling my 25 for a 30 at this point - But, I prefer offshore fishing. If I were to stick with an under 25' boat I'd be looking at CAT hulls because of shallow draft and ability to handle rougher water than a mono. just my opinion.
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Old 06-18-2015, 09:12 AM
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I would take a look at a triumph 215CC. That boat will last you a lifetime and would be easy to trailer with just one person.
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Old 06-18-2015, 09:31 AM
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Since you. "might" start offshore then sounds like mostly in and nearshore with the offshore trip when the days and conditions allow. No pun intended but I was in the same boat and spent a tremendous amount of time researching for the one "do it all" boat. After a year I was almost convinced there was no such animal and just would need two boats. I was just reading here one day and came across a thread on the Layton Bay and invested untold hours researching the company, the boat and the hull designer David Sintes who has been designing hulls almost forever. Layton Boatworks has been building 50' plus sport fish boats for almost ever with the Sintes hulls and Carlton Layton spent 25 years plus at Albemarle Marine as their VP of Engineering. After a lot of questions and all the right answers I knew I found the right builder and the one "do it all" 22' boat. Doug and Carlton Layton are true custom builders and will do what it takes to ensure you get what you need. They put the very same quality and attention to detail into their bay boat as they do with their 52' Layton Sportfish. Have a look at my build thread and look at their construction which uses the infusion process. Spend time researching and comparing and find a benchmark for build quality and go from there which is what I did. In the end for me, Layton Bay was the clear winner. Happy hunting!
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Old 06-18-2015, 09:48 AM
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How does the Layton Bay ride with 12degree deadrise seems like it would be a little rough.
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Old 06-18-2015, 09:54 AM
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Thank you all for the boat recommendations. I will look into those. More than make specific though I am mostly looking for advice on the utility vs ease of operation of different size boats in the 20-24 foot range. My largest boat so far was 18' so I am not sure if the upside of larger is outweighed by any downsides, or if within that range it is all basically the same when it comes to trailering, loading, towing, etc. Honestly I am leaning towards the 20 but don't want to have 2 footitis in a year or so once I get used to using it. That and I don't want to be caught out in the chop and wish I had bigger. Thanks again for the input.
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Old 06-18-2015, 09:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Powerbait View Post
I went from a 20 to a 25. honestly, towing and getting in/out of the water is not different. I can say after being on 22-24' boats that at 24' there is a world of difference in the ride and range that you have. I'm considering selling my 25 for a 30 at this point - But, I prefer offshore fishing. If I were to stick with an under 25' boat I'd be looking at CAT hulls because of shallow draft and ability to handle rougher water than a mono. just my opinion.
x2

my first boat was a 19' bowrider and the current boat is a 25' CC...
now we are contemplating the move up to something in the 28-31' range.


I'd say go 23-25'
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Old 06-18-2015, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by billy32 View Post
Thank you all for the boat recommendations. I will look into those. More than make specific though I am mostly looking for advice on the utility vs ease of operation of different size boats in the 20-24 foot range. My largest boat so far was 18' so I am not sure if the upside of larger is outweighed by any downsides, or if within that range it is all basically the same when it comes to trailering, loading, towing, etc. Honestly I am leaning towards the 20 but don't want to have 2 footitis in a year or so once I get used to using it. That and I don't want to be caught out in the chop and wish I had bigger. Thanks again for the input.
A good 20' will do a lot I fish my Pioneer 197 30 miles offshore every chance I get. It has a great ride, very fuel efficient and if its too rough to run in this boat I wouldn't go in anything up to 25' in. I had a 23' Seacat that I bought new it was an awesome boat but very heavy to tow and it was just a lot of boat to deal with. That was the reason I went smaller but still sufficient. Seacat was a great boat and I miss it but for the fishing I do now it wouldn't make good sense to own it. If its not nice weather to enjoy and fish comfortable then im not running offshore. You can fish in rougher conditions in larger boats but when you slow down to fish its still rough regardless of boat size.
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Old 06-18-2015, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by ccat View Post
How does the Layton Bay ride with 12degree deadrise seems like it would be a little rough.
Incredibly well she has an extremely sharp entry. A guide who is a member here has logged a hell of a lot of miles in his out of Montauk has run through some very nasty weather with 3' to 5' and while not a hell of a lot of fun, boat performed very well. She will eat up true 2 to 3' chop at close to 40 mph and you'll remain dry. Hull was designed specifically for this in the coastal NC waters. At first I found it hard to believe until I watched a video and it's true.
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Old 06-18-2015, 12:32 PM
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Bigger is better or you'll wish you had that extra two feet later on.

My .02
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Old 06-18-2015, 12:45 PM
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I went from an 18 bay boat to 23 offshore center console. The only downsides of going to 23-24 is that you are in the 250+ HP range, meaning higher gas/maintenance/insurance bill, as well as more boat to clean. But other than that, I would go with the biggest boat that you can afford.
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Old 06-18-2015, 01:34 PM
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I went from 18 to 28 about 18 months ago. Trailer both boats and once I found the right trailer for the 28 I can say it's just as easy to launch and retrieve the bigger boat. I winch it on just like I did the smaller boat without any problems. What I have found to be a huge difference is in the time I spend cleaning the boat after each use. I would do the 18 in an hour to 1 1/2 (flush motor, hose off boat and trailer, dry and cover the boat) but the 28 takes about 3 to 3 1/2. Hasn't kept me from going out, but I certainly think about what's waiting for me when we get home. IMO you should consider a 22 or 23 which will give you more options in the long run (offshore, inshore, good weather, not such good weather) and just make sure the trailer is fitted properly to the boat. This will make the move to a larger boat painless.
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Old 06-18-2015, 02:32 PM
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Originally Posted by arosmarin View Post
I went from an 18 bay boat to 23 offshore center console. The only downsides of going to 23-24 is that you are in the 250+ HP range, meaning higher gas/maintenance/insurance bill, as well as more boat to clean. But other than that, I would go with the biggest boat that you can afford.
+1. The ride quality of the bigger boat is offset by higher maintenance and running cost. Let's be honest, if a bigger boat is going to put you in bigger water you will experience more wear and tear on not just the boat, but also your own body, which can lead to more downtime. But at the same time there is plenty of good water for smaller boats. I've not lost any time on the water because of water conditions. I just don't tear up my boat on rough day's anymore.

IMO the higher maintenance and running cost of the 24ft does not outweigh the benefits in the poster's situation. I've owned 24ft, 28ft, 16ft, now 18ft boat in that order. In my experience the smaller the boat is the more you use it. So I went back to a smaller boat even after growing the family.
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Old 06-18-2015, 02:52 PM
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You could get the 20' boat and then get a case of 2' itis.... upgrade to 22' and have a relapse, then end up with a 24' and decide that you are getting older and 27' is right for you.

Or you could get a 24-25' now and use it for years and years, saving money and time of constant upsizing, and then when you do look into a 29-33' boat which IMHO is the right size. assuming that you will no longer need to trailer it, cause at that size it's a bigger job and just easier to jump on and turn the key.
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Old 06-18-2015, 03:35 PM
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I had a 20 foot maritime skiff got close to 6 mpg and did 30knots with a 115 Suzuki. Im gonna miss that kind of economy.
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Old 06-18-2015, 04:13 PM
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All boats shrink dramatically when you put them in the water. We went 18', 21', 24' and now 27'. All felt a lot bigger for a couple weeks, then you get used to the added length. If I had to try and scratch all the OP's itches, I would take the 23-24'.
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Old 06-18-2015, 06:30 PM
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I think the general consensus on any boat forum is to buy the largest boat you can afford, handle, and care for. So many people, myself included, have learned this lesson the hard way when they sell their "last boat", in order to get a bigger one.
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Old 06-18-2015, 08:50 PM
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Originally Posted by ccat View Post
Pioneer 197 Sportfish Much better than the ones mentioned, very well built, rides and fishes like a much larger boat and best customer support you could ask for.
Gotta agree with this of course. I went from 18 to it and it was a big difference in space and ride. For your specified use that size is good. Easy and economic to tow (a lot From Orlando) and economic trips. If I were you I wouldn't go bigger than 22.
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Old 06-18-2015, 08:55 PM
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Billy, if I were you, I wouldn't go smaller than 24'!

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