WELCOME TO RIVER DAVES PLACE

Getting back on the water, need advice

baja-chris

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 26, 2019
Messages
150
Reaction score
237
Howdy all, planning to get back on the water after a 15+ year break and need some guidance.
Boating experience mostly limited to an old 19ft Eliminator Daytona with a 235 then a 20ft Schiada with a 300 merc 2-stroke.
Wife did some speed skiing in her youth and spent a lot of time on the lower Colorado in various OB ski boats.
Almost sunk the little Daytona on Lake Powell when a storm kicked up 4+ foot waves. But it was a nice ride on the lower colorado.
The Schiada did ok in rougher water but certainly not comfortable and wife hated it when it got rough (small shallow V).
So now we are both retirement age, banged up a bit from hard living, and looking for something easy to get in and out at a beach or sand bar (thinking deck boat or pontoon),
And we want something that gives a smooth comfortable ride on Havasu when it gets rough in the afternoon at say 45 mph.
Don't really need anything super fast, I'd be ok with a top speed north of 60 but probably never go above 80 even if the boat can.
Also concerned about insurance costs. And needs dog friendly seating for our lab, and my wife who likes to sit with the dog while underway.
How does something like a 26 Nordic deck OB compare to say a 27 X-flight or Howard VTX 255 at 45mph on a rough Havasu day?
Primary use will be at Havasu but love to run up the river to around Avi or trailer it down to Martinez.
Skeptical of I/O for shallower river use. Should I stick to OB for that use? Or is an I/O ok? Can I/O be trimmed up while on plane for a shallower draft or is it just for trimming boat attitude?
In the 26-29ft range, at speeds of around 45mph is there much difference in rough water ride between a deep V and a cat?
Is a 26 cat big enough to avoid punching through 4ft waves on Powell? Tons more choices in used deck boats with I/O, not many OB.
Wife likes idea of a pontoon boat but I'd like something more performance oriented. Love to stay around $50k for a used boat but could go much higher if needed, max around $150k.
 

Ziggy

SlumLord
Joined
Sep 20, 2007
Messages
32,656
Reaction score
31,044
Welcome to RDP.
We own a 26 Nordic deck for many of the same reasons. Little older(cough,cough) and not as agile. Boat runs happiest right around 50 and handles the rougher Havasu chop and weekend water real nice. It is pretty rare that it'll slam through a wake like a V. With a 520merc racing motor it'll run ~65......but I know it has done 74, just not with anything in it but a small driver and 5-6 gals of fuel.
Our dog tends to sit at my wifes feet in passenger side helm. while underway.
We also could not get ourselves to go the pontoon route yet either.
Good luck on your search. If you are in Havasu sometime send me a message, if we happen to be there we'd be glad to give you a ride to get a feel of its ride.
 

DrunkenSailor

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 11, 2017
Messages
6,554
Reaction score
8,067
I believe @RiverDave has been on all 3 of the boats that you mentioned and has done write ups on at least 2 of the 3.

I can think of a couple of points. Boat prices are crazy, Outboards are still fairly new to the performance boat scene. Which means that your looking at newer boats and big dollars for an outboard cat.

I really like how the Nordic rides the shovel is angled up so any water coming over the bow would have to come all the way up the sponsons. I also wouldn't worry too much with an outboard in the lower river.

All of that said a nordic with outboards is gonna be big money. Like probably over your budget money...

A used twin outboard toon would probably fit all of your needs pretty well. If you can find one...
 

baja-chris

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 26, 2019
Messages
150
Reaction score
237
Thanks for the replies guys. Yes the price of boats is amazingly high. I'll get to Havasu sometime in mid/late July and talk to Nordic and others, like to get a quote on a 26 deck with a pair of 250 OB. I'm sure that would be plenty of performance for us. And I do see a used one with 300's for under my max budget. But yikes, that's still a lot of coin. And a new Howard VTX should be under my max $ based on reading on this site. Have read the RD reviews but they don't really compare the boats to other boats. Years ago Hot Boat used to do comparisons, not just reviews, but seems hard to find those types of articles now. Something about a pontoon. Maybe like a fat chick, can be lots of fun but don't let your buddies find out!
 

84miller

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 26, 2017
Messages
481
Reaction score
713
I would buy a deck boat with a 200 four stroke out board, used. Good luck...
 

DrunkenSailor

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 11, 2017
Messages
6,554
Reaction score
8,067
I might consider giving Shockwave a call they are usually pretty aggressive on pricing and are extremely open to customer desires.
 

RiverDave

In it to win it
Joined
Sep 13, 2007
Messages
108,619
Reaction score
99,764
If the three you listed my choice would be the twin outboard 26 Nordic with 300’s used.. Especially if you plan on running any shallow water.

the x flight is basically a 27-29 vee and will draft a lot of water. The VTX is only going to be available in I/O and also runs into the same problem.

if your choices though the Nordic is probably going to be the most expensive, it will also get on plane the slowest..

it will be the fastest of the group and will have not problems cruising at 50 or 80+
 

Outdrive1

Outdrive1 Marine Sales https://www.outdrive1.com/
Joined
Dec 19, 2007
Messages
29,178
Reaction score
17,905
If I was looking for a nice boat and only wanted to go 45, I’d find a nice tritoon with a 400. Like a 25’r. Double bimini. Plenty of room for you guys. They accelerate great. It’s going to do mid 50’s speed wise and be 50/60k cheaper than the nordic and have a better ride imo.

If you can’t get over owning a tritoon, out of what you listed I’d buy a Nordic deck with a stock 502. It’s going to be plenty for you and be significantly cheaper on insurance and purchase price than the twin outboards. Thane turns boats out fairly fast at Nordic.

Next would be the Howard, but I think Gene is up to a year out. I really like the 255 and it’s efficient with stock power.

Last would be the Advantage, and only because I’d prefer a cat myself in that size. But the Advantage has tons of room, the XFlight is a really well thought out boat. The beach access however is going to be light years easier on a deck boat or tritoon.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Detox Don

Member
Joined
May 25, 2020
Messages
10
Reaction score
3
I would go with a Cat or Pontoon if you want to run up the river towards Avi.
 

baja-chris

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 26, 2019
Messages
150
Reaction score
237
Getting comfortable with the idea of a pontoon boat. Tritoon with a 400 or similar. Also thinking about getting a park model at the Islander. Are there any other places with private ramps to avoid the state park ramps? Islander looks nice but the monthly fees are pretty high. Anywhere else where you can launch on Havasu or river above within a compound like that? Also do people leave boats at their places at the Islander when they leave or do people take them to storage? Seems like a secure place. We will book some days at the Islander in a rental later in July to check it out and look at what is for sale. BTW, know of anything for sale in there that not on the Islander website?
 

baja-chris

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 26, 2019
Messages
150
Reaction score
237
Well we pulled the trigger on a new Avalon Excalibur with dual biminis rear variable lounger and a 400merc with most every option. January delivery as a 2021 model. Thanks for the suggestions guys! Great site here Dave!
 

Wedgy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2020
Messages
1,940
Reaction score
2,851
Congratulations on your new boat, and Welcome to the site!
 
Top