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tcbass

Minimum length for Bass Boat for 2 people?

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I'm looking at buying a used bass boat. My old boat was a Crestliner Fish Hawk that was 16' feet. It seemed that if you weren't careful and if the bow fisherman and co-angler at the back of the boat cast at the same time sometimes they could almost hit each other. I was hoping that a longer boat would fix this. I know with a bass boat, even though you may fish at the tip of the bow at times you may also be fishing from the middle of the platform which would put you back a few feet. 

 

For 2 people fishing, one from the front, one at the rear of the boat, what is the minimum length you would go?

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17 is very much doable for 2. Add a 3rd and it gets crowded real quick

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I agree with slonezp.  17 feet with suffice for two anglers but if you throw a third person in there it gets borderline dangerous.  I used to fish mostly out of a 17.5 foot crestliner fish hawk tiller which is more of a deep-v multi species boat and it would get hairy at times just with 2 anglers.  Now I have an 18 foot true bass boat with two designated casting decks and its much more comfortable with an angler in the front and back now.

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I have a Larson FX 1750 (17'6") and its a perfect fit for 2 anglers  I've had 3 on a few times and if the guys were good anglers then that worked really well.

 

Edited by Puggz
Not relevant

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Are you looking at an aluminum or fiberglass boat. If you are going aluminum a boat like my 2010 Lowe Stinger 170 works fine for two serious anglers. If I was going with fiberglass, I would not go less than 18' and prefer 18'8 or bigger. There are tons of older used 18 footers with a 150 on them.  Look around for a used 1990 to 2000 Ranger. Most of the 300 and 400 series rigs were in that category and fish well.  Lots of Skeeters and others like that as well.

Here is a picture of my Stinger 170, it is 17 feet 6 inches long and has a 75 Merc on it. I have fished it on the Upper Chesapeake bay as well as in big lakes in Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia, MD. and PA. Almost all of the time two anglers fish off it. I did purposely remove the middle seat so it is more comfortable and no one is walking on the seat to get up or down from the rear deck.

DSCN0017_zpspunt92lr.jpg

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15 minutes ago, fishnkamp said:

Are you looking at an aluminum or fiberglass boat. If you are going aluminum a boat like my 2010 Lowe Stinger 170 works fine for two serious anglers. If I was going with fiberglass, I would not go less than 18' and prefer 18'8 or bigger. There are tons of older used 18 footers with a 150 on them.  Look around for a used 1990 to 2000 Ranger. Most of the 300 and 400 series rigs were in that category and fish well.  Lots of Skeeters and others like that as well.

Here is a picture of my Stinger 170, it is 17 feet 6 inches long and has a 75 Merc on it. I have fished it on the Upper Chesapeake bay as well as in big lakes in Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia, MD. and PA. Almost all of the time two anglers fish off it. I did purposely remove the middle seat so it is more comfortable and no one is walking on the seat to get up or down from the rear deck.

DSCN0017_zpspunt92lr.jpg

 

 

Why is 17' ok for aluminum and 18' for fiberglass? Design?

 

I just bought an 18' actually. Wanted a 19' or bigger but in central MN there are not a ton of bass boats and the few over 18' are circa 2000, while the one I just got is 2014.

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I look at it this way, the 17 and a half foot aluminum boat runs well with its 75 hp engine (that is max hp for the boat).  A fiberglass boat the same size will weigh more and may have a max hp of about 115.  The boat will perhaps run just a tad smoother but in my experience it is not big enough to justify the extra expense it will cost to run it compared to the 17'6 to 18'6 aluminum boats.. The question was "what is the minimum boat size that would be comfortable for two anglers to fish."  A 18 foot 6 inch fiberglass bass boat will most likely have a 150 hp engine and most times at least a 90 inch or bigger beam. Many of the 17'6 " fiberglass bass boats have a beam more like 85 inches. The combination of extra length and width will mean the 18 footer will be more stable, and with its 150 hp engine it will run in the high 50's or 60s. It just makes a better all around package. One last thing to consider it is harder to sell a fiberglass bass boat in the 17 foot range with a 115 or less horsepower engine.  This boat is the 11 my wife and I have owned in 40 years. Our two big ones were fiberglass with the biggest a ProCraft 20 footer with a 200 EFI Merc.

By the way what boat did you get?

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12 minutes ago, fishnkamp said:

I look at it this way, the 17 and a half foot aluminum boat runs well with its 75 hp engine (that is max hp for the boat).  A fiberglass boat the same size will weigh more and may have a max hp of about 115.  The boat will perhaps run just a tad smoother but in my experience it is not big enough to justify the extra expense it will cost to run it compared to the 17'6 to 18'6 aluminum boats.. The question was "what is the minimum boat size that would be comfortable for two anglers to fish."  A 18 foot 6 inch fiberglass bass boat will most likely have a 150 hp engine and most times at least a 90 inch or bigger beam. Many of the 17'6 " fiberglass bass boats have a beam more like 85 inches. The combination of extra length and width will mean the 18 footer will be more stable, and with its 150 hp engine it will run in the high 50's or 60s. It just makes a better all around package. One last thing to consider it is harder to sell a fiberglass bass boat in the 17 foot range with a 115 or less horsepower engine.  This boat is the 11 my wife and I have owned in 40 years. Our two big ones were fiberglass with the biggest a ProCraft 20 footer with a 200 EFI Merc.

By the way what boat did you get?

 

This one. 

Hope I got a good deal.

 

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Oh I am sorry, I guess it was too late my brain did not connect the two threads. The Stratos Boats are nice. That VLO is in great shape.  The only thing I would do to that boat would be to remove the center seat.  I hate walking on the center seats. They always intsall the rubberized mat on the back of the seat so no one trips. By walking on the seat back, eventually the vinyl cracks or the threads and piping come apart. Since that is a hinged flip up seat I would either leave the hinge on the seat and get a spare from Stratos or remove it and use the existing one.. Next I would get some aluminum diamond plate or some 3/4 inch plywood, paint it real good to seal it then carpet it and make a cover plate for the walk up and storage underneath. I have seen a lot of boats using the diamond plate in that area.  Otherwise I think that is a beautiful boat and should serve you well. 

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4 minutes ago, fishnkamp said:

Oh I am sorry, I guess it was too late my brain did not connect the two threads. The Stratos Boats are nice. That VLO is in great shape.  The only thing I would do to that boat would be to remove the center seat.  I hate walking on the center seats. They always intsall the rubberized mat on the back of the seat so no one trips. By walking on the seat back, eventually the vinyl cracks or the threads and piping come apart. Since that is a hinged flip up seat I would either leave the hinge on the seat and get a spare from Stratos or remove it and use the existing one.. Next I would get some aluminum diamond plate or some 3/4 inch plywood, paint it real good to seal it then carpet it and make a cover plate for the walk up and storage underneath. I have seen a lot of boats using the diamond plate in that area.  Otherwise I think that is a beautiful boat and should serve you well. 

 

 

Get a spare whole seat for when that one wears out or get only get a spare back?

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I have a 17ft 8in Quest center console. Its lay out is different than most bass boats but it fits 2 comfortably fishing and three if the anglers are experienced and know how to cast. I would go no smaller than 17ft. 

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Have fished 3 out of 14' it was a little close. 16' would be as short as I would go.  Lots of room for 3 in my 18' Lowe 180W.

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20 hours ago, tcbass said:

For 2 people fishing, one from the front, one at the rear of the boat, what is the minimum length you would go?

Mine is a 18' and using rods in the 7' to 7'6" range we can fish 2 comfortably. Personally I would not want to go any shorter but I could see two anglers that were on the same page doing it with no problem. 

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6 hours ago, RUSS9999 said:

Have fished 3 out of 14' it was a little close. 16' would be as short as I would go.  Lots of room for 3 in my 18' Lowe 180W.

me and my cousin used to fish a 350 acre lake out of a 12' jon boat with a trolling motor. good times.

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Depends on who the two people are!

I fish 3 out of my 16' aluminum & 2 easily out of my 15' 5" fiberglass. 

With some people a 40' aint enough ;)

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On July 27, 2016 at 11:22 PM, fishnkamp said:

Are you looking at an aluminum or fiberglass boat. If you are going aluminum a boat like my 2010 Lowe Stinger 170 works fine for two serious anglers. If I was going with fiberglass, I would not go less than 18' and prefer 18'8 or bigger. There are tons of older used 18 footers with a 150 on them.  Look around for a used 1990 to 2000 Ranger. Most of the 300 and 400 series rigs were in that category and fish well.  Lots of Skeeters and others like that as well.

Here is a picture of my Stinger 170, it is 17 feet 6 inches long and has a 75 Merc on it. I have fished it on the Upper Chesapeake bay as well as in big lakes in Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia, MD. and PA. Almost all of the time two anglers fish off it. I did purposely remove the middle seat so it is more comfortable and no one is walking on the seat to get up or down from the rear deck.

DSCN0017_zpspunt92lr.jpg

 

 

 

Not not to hijack this thread, but I have the exact same motor except in a 50 HP. Does yours idle rough?

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Well 3 cylinder outboards are not the smoothest idling creatures but no I do not consider it rough idling. You might want to change the spark plugs.Which plugs does it have in ti. It most likely should have the BP8H-N-10 ngk That is a NGK plug. Do not even think about running a Champion plug, it will run rough.  Depending on how old it is you might want to replace the three ignition wires also. I did it to mine this year and they were not hateful in price. Make sure they are all the way in to deliver the fire easily. You may even want to put a bottle of SeaFoam in your tank and run it through your outboard. You may have some gunked up carbs.

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13 hours ago, fishnkamp said:

Well 3 cylinder outboards are not the smoothest idling creatures but no I do not consider it rough idling. You might want to change the spark plugs.Which plugs does it have in ti. It most likely should have the BP8H-N-10 ngk That is a NGK plug. Do not even think about running a Champion plug, it will run rough.  Depending on how old it is you might want to replace the three ignition wires also. I did it to mine this year and they were not hateful in price. Make sure they are all the way in to deliver the fire easily. You may even want to put a bottle of SeaFoam in your tank and run it through your outboard. You may have some gunked up carbs.

 

 

I I had the carbs taken out and checked they were clean. I also ran seafoam AND Stabil Marine in it. I've only gotten to take it out twice and it's been a tough cracker to start and idle both times. It stalls out several times but once I keep it going long enough to throw it into gear it runs smooth as can be. If I shut it down at the ramp dock to unload and try to start it back up to idle it onto the trailer when loading it stalls out to where I have to pull it on with my dock line and winch it on. The thing runs great when open throttle but idles rough as hell to the point it stalls out a lot.

 

 

come to think of it, I did put new plugs in it last month and they are champions ?

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Back in the 70's I ran nothing but Champions in my Mercs.  Since that time, Mercs come with NGKs. Go write down your serial number. Go to your local dealer and find out what plug the engine calls for. My dealer has the NGK plugs in stock. I deal with him often so he lets me buy the ones he gets in bulk rather than the ones normally boxed for resale.  I save a few bucks and pay only a bit more than if I run a few miles away to a local West Marine.  Put the right plug in and it should work much better. By the way, do not go by the plug number I listed, it came from my Seloc Manual.  That manual has a table that covers a ton of models and years and is correct most of the time, but not always. It has the correct plug listed for my engine though, it takes a BUHW-2. It is funny, in the 1990 to 2000 model years the 50,60,75, and 90 hp engine are all 3 cylindersengines with different cubic inch bores and use different plugs in them. Like the bore and stroke of a 75 and 90 is the exact same but use two different plugs in them. Wierd! 

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10 hours ago, fishnkamp said:

Back in the 70's I ran nothing but Champions in my Mercs.  Since that time, Mercs come with NGKs. Go write down your serial number. Go to your local dealer and find out what plug the engine calls for. My dealer has the NGK plugs in stock. I deal with him often so he lets me buy the ones he gets in bulk rather than the ones normally boxed for resale.  I save a few bucks and pay only a bit more than if I run a few miles away to a local West Marine.  Put the right plug in and it should work much better. By the way, do not go by the plug number I listed, it came from my Seloc Manual.  That manual has a table that covers a ton of models and years and is correct most of the time, but not always. It has the correct plug listed for my engine though, it takes a BUHW-2. It is funny, in the 1990 to 2000 model years the 50,60,75, and 90 hp engine are all 3 cylindersengines with different cubic inch bores and use different plugs in them. Like the bore and stroke of a 75 and 90 is the exact same but use two different plugs in them. Wierd! 

 

So you thinking changing the Champions to NGK's will result in a better idle?

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Yes for sure. Just make sure they are the right ones.

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