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Moving up to a bigger boat - Best hull

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Old 10-10-2018, 07:24 AM
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Default Moving up to a bigger boat - Best hull

I have been fishing the bay for two seasons and have been out over 100 times. I bought an 04 21 fit Hydra-Sports Lightning and while I like the boat I get beat up pretty bad when the chop is up. Since I go so often I am looking to upgrade to a 24-26 ft CC and am looking for advice on the best hull to handle the larger waves in the bay and also be able to periodically offshore. Been looking at Hydra Sports Vectors and Edgewaters but am open to suggestions. Prefer all composite, forward seating, and Yamaha Power. 50-60K budget.

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Old 10-10-2018, 08:18 AM
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That's a used boat budget
Find a used cat. Eats Bay chop up

Hydrasports and edgewater are very nice quality boats. A larger quality boat will be a huge difference from a 21'


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They are very nicely suited to our particular waters. nice compromise boat for drifting and chop. They are not offshore wave smashers. or 30 mph 3' bay wave machines
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Old 10-10-2018, 08:21 AM
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older 26' Regulator
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Old 10-10-2018, 08:26 AM
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Don't make the small jump you will regret it. Go ahead and get something in the 30' range and love it.
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Old 10-10-2018, 08:30 AM
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Rarely does anyone say - "i wish i'd gotten a smaller boat"

Do your homework and get as big of a boat as you can handle/afford
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Old 10-10-2018, 08:30 AM
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I would get something like this

2002 26 Regulator Forward Seating
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Old 10-10-2018, 08:38 AM
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26 Reg a very versatile boat that is trailerable and can be very effective offshore. Heavier and will ride better than the brands listed. But will burn more fuel. I've found crew doesn't mind paying a little more at the pump if I'm not beating them to sh*t in the ocean in my 29 haha.
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Old 10-10-2018, 08:38 AM
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I moved from a 21cc to a 26cc and it made a world of difference
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Old 10-10-2018, 09:02 AM
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lots to consider:
- are you trailering or putting it in a slip?
- any limitations WRT size of slip or weight for trailering?
- are you opposed to twin engines? pretty significant increase in fuel and maintenance costs?
- what sort of offshore range do you want?

i've owned a marlago 35 with twin 250s that ate up everything the bay had to offer, but was damned expensive to own. i dropped down to a 23 scout with a single and it meets my needs 80-90% of the time. there's probably 10 days per year when i'm out on the bay thinking, i wish i had another 3 feet under me...

i really think the sweet spot for the bay is 26-27 ft with a SINGLE. there's a lot more options now with the large HP outboards -- it used to be you had to go twins with anything over about 24/25. i'm not one of the judge zealots, but i find myself looking at the 27 / 265 pretty hard as my move-up option because it checks a lot of options.

a 26 regulator is an amazing boat, but it's heavy and will use a lot more fuel than many boats in the same size. with your budget you'd be looking at an older one and a possible repower...
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Old 10-10-2018, 09:17 AM
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I moved from 22 seahunt to a 25 seahunt and its a huge difference. The weight alone of a bigger hull makes a big difference in the bay. Larger fuel tank for longer runs, extra storage etc. Your budget will put you into an older boat, which is the worst. A singke engines boat would help keeping the cost down though.
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Old 10-10-2018, 10:17 AM
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"Your budget will put you into an older boat, which is the worst. "

Whats wrong with a older well kept boat? seems like the most cost efficient way to go for me.

If you really think you will fish offshore i would consider a walkaround or something with good protection (i.e. new curtains on a CC). A 2-3 hour soaked ride sucks...
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Old 10-10-2018, 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by deephookset View Post
I have been fishing the bay for two seasons and have been out over 100 times. I bought an 04 21 fit Hydra-Sports Lightning and while I like the boat I get beat up pretty bad when the chop is up. Since I go so often I am looking to upgrade to a 24-26 ft CC and am looking for advice on the best hull to handle the larger waves in the bay and also be able to periodically offshore. Been looking at Hydra Sports Vectors and Edgewaters but am open to suggestions. Prefer all composite, forward seating, and Yamaha Power. 50-60K budget.

Thanks
The 24/25 Edgewater is a real nice boat but I have had my butt kicked a few times in that hull with choppy conditions in the Delaware bay. I think the 25 Hydra sports will ride better but the fit and finish isn’t as nice as the Edgewater. Have you been on a catamaran? A 25 World Cat or 25 Prowler could be had used in that price range. IMO cats are perfect for the bay unless you are a big troller than you might not like the tunnel slap. They can be fished in the shallows and crush the bay chop.

Where are the Judge guys? Hello Greg are you there?? Give him a minute he is getting ready for the boat show. The 265 is great option for the bay if you don’t mind slowing down but its out of your price range new.
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Old 10-10-2018, 12:22 PM
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if you are reaching upward in size, then a 26 Regulator should be an option. Everyone has an opinion, so take it with a grain of salt. I have been running my regulator for nearly 8 years and i dont have a single complaint (but others will complain about the "step up" heading towards the bow, or that its heavy, or that one of live wells is in the floor....all of that bothers some people, but none of that has bothered me at all). I use the floor livewell for most bait, and move them up to transom livewell as needed....step up has more storage than without...and the weight helps with the ride....I also have twin F225's which everyone has huge issues with because of the corrosion problem...I had mine scoped, and one had light corrosion and the other didnt---BUT i just went ahead and did them both. Problem solved. I use the boat to head over to bahamas and around south florida and have had no complaints.
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Old 10-10-2018, 12:48 PM
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I help rep for Judge but if ride in the rough at high speed is your number 1 goal then I recommend a heavy deep v. The downside is that you are going to need twins to adequately push the boat and you are going to sacrifice stability and draft. It also will require a much more stout truck to pull the boat with as well.. For example, a 26 Regulator and a 265 Judge are about the same length and beam. The Judge will run great with single V6 4 stroke and can be towed with a heavy tow packaged half ton truck. The Regulator needs a twin v6 4 strokes and will require 3/4 ton truck.

To me the run is only part of what I do. I fish the bay and near shore in the ocean pretty hard and find that a 18kn-25kn cruise is completely adequate for what I do. A single motor is a lot less to feed and maintain and less upfront cost. If I want to fish a long distance from where I typically launch, I have no problem towing to a closer ramp. It saves more time and fuel towing the boat than running most days no matter how fast and good your boat rides. Given that I typically dont run more than 25nm from the ramp a faster boat isnt really going to get me there that much faster.

As far as other options go, if I get a center console I am not getting forward seating. It would get in the way of using the entire boat for fishing. Give me an open bow boat with a coffin box. If I am going to have obstructions in the bow to fish over, I am getting a cabin boat for weather protection so I can fish in more comfort. The Hydra sports bow is kind of like a casting platform and they seem like nice boats. Regulator is a bench mark for ride in the 26' class boat. (older ones dont have forward seating - called the classic model). I havent seen the deck layout of the Edgewater you are considering but while they are top of the line nice boats, always seem to have less deck space than the Regulator or Contenders in the deep V class. Good luck with your search. Your budget may dictate what brand is best for you when you start to consider how well the used boats were cared for. Certainly look at the engines. Repowering a twin engine deep v boat is no joke these days. You can easily spend 40+ grand on new twin engines.

Last edited by iFishMD; 10-10-2018 at 01:01 PM.
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Old 10-10-2018, 01:03 PM
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Really didn't say what you expect the boat to do other than knock down bay chop... Only fish bay? what kind fishing would you like boat to do?
Like 2 others here have already mentioned bigger is better
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Old 10-10-2018, 02:11 PM
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Off the top of my head, hulls that are known for ride quality.......
Regulator 26
Contender 23T or 25T
Hydra Sports Vector 2500 or 2596
Cape Horn 24 Offshore
Sailfish 2660
Bluewater 2550

You'll be looking at used in that price range, but should be able to find a very well cared for hull with low hour motors for your posted budget.
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Old 10-10-2018, 02:25 PM
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Took a ride in a 31 Stamas a while back, Was pretty impressed with overall ride .. I love CC's -- sold a 21- when to 25 and with-in 1.5yrs wanted bigger.. ( to run nearshore/offshore) there is not one boat that covers all the bases for me.. ( like my Grady -27'10" walkaround-- it does cover most of the overall saltwater fishing needs, I choose to do at this time)
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Old 10-10-2018, 05:27 PM
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235 kencraft challenger
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Old 10-10-2018, 07:06 PM
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Originally Posted by finnedfanatic View Post
"Your budget will put you into an older boat, which is the worst. "

Whats wrong with a older well kept boat? seems like the most cost efficient way to go for me.

If you really think you will fish offshore i would consider a walkaround or something with good protection (i.e. new curtains on a CC). A 2-3 hour soaked ride sucks...

Sorry Late night typing... I meant to say an older boat "ISN"T" the worst. Plenty of well kept older boats out there for sale.

Most people take better care of their boats than their vehicles. Speaking from my own experience!
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Old 10-10-2018, 07:37 PM
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Check out Robalo boats. I have a 24ft CC with a tower and absolutely love it. Solid as can be and great riding. Robalos are generally heavier boats compared to others in its class so they tend to eat up the waves really well. I think a 24 Robalo is close to 1,000 pounds heavier than like a 24 Scout for example. If you're going to go off shore than doing it in a Robalo is definitely more doable.
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