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So I know there's the old conversation of fiberglass vs aluminum and I know my question falls right into that. I have been looking at both these boats for a while now and can not decide which to pull the trigger on. I have discovered that a 115hp motor is the best option for me because it is the max horse power for my home lake but it still has enough power for likes like Hartwell and Clarks Hill. Does anyone own or has ever ran either of these boats? Any asvice would be greatly appreciated. 

This will be my first boat purchase and I am probably over thinking it I know. I want whatever is going to last the longest, be generally simple to maintain, and just be an all around good boat. Thanks. 

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I think I would go for the 188 over the z175. Ranger also came out with a z185 but if 115 is the max horsepower you want then I think the rt188 would be nice. 

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obviously the aluminum and fiberglass are hard to compare.  totally two different types of boats.  I would go aluminum.  I like that you get all the same features as a glass boat, it is light weight, smaller motor and get some good speed out of it.  there are plenty of aluminum boats out there check them all out. 

check this link out

http://mercurynewsroom.com/gustafson-cox-put-forrest-wood-cup-hopes-on-aluminum-boats-powered-by-mercury-225-pro-xs-200-verado/

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Ranger Z175 Fiberglass
 
 
At 17'6" and a 90" beam, I will say that this boat feels a lot bigger than what the specs say it is. It has a large front deck with a great deal of storage for this size of boat. Although it does not have a center rod locker like the Z117 had, I like this layout much better because of the tackle storage and step cooler. There is still plenty of rod storage with 10 rod tubes and the ability to store up to 8' long rods inside. The rig in the video is powered by a Mercury 115hp Command Thrust 4 stroke.
 
My personal choice would be the Ranger Z175 Fiberglass. More bang for the buck and a much better resale value.
 
                                   http://www.***.net/showthread.php?t=654385
 
 
 
Ranger RT188 Aluminum
 
 
Nice boat with good interior layout. Hull design is fairly old school, not much deadrise and no reverse chines. Transom is straight down with no set back. The ride will get harsh if you push it in rough water. It will also tend to break loose or drift sideways in a tight turn at WOT.
 
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Right on guys. So with one thing that I've been thinking about to is the maintance of a fiberglass vs aluminum. What is the usual maintance for the fiberglass? 

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I would advise you to think about a few things. First I really like the Etec engine but it saw in one video on the aluminum they took up the rear storage compartment behind the driver for its tank. Personally I would pick a 4 stroke for that reason.  Ford or Chevy debate (Merc or Yamaha). Now check and see how many rods can be put in the Rt188 and 175 and how long. You know the rod tubes could be removed and tons of rods stored in the Z175 using rod socks. Take a look at the room in the rear compartment    Make sure there is room for three batteries and the battery charger without losing a storage box. Personally it looks like to me the storage layout is better on the rear of the 175. The side boxes look bigger.  Also I am not sure all of the compartments are going to stay dry on the 188. I think I have read a few complaints about this.  Please, owners of the RT188 s chime in on this.  I can see the compartments are well sealed on the Z175.  These are my preferences, but I saw a removable cooler on one of the RT188 videos and it took up the rear compartment behind the passenger, maybe that was an option.  I prefer the step up built in cooler and also the bucket seats on the Z175 are awesome. Just a few observations but only made through a video cameras lens. Go sit in them.   

When I owned my two fiberglass boats the biggest difference was 2 waxings a year and a full wipe down when I pulled out. Be aware i was running on the Potomac or Upper Chesapeake Bay both of which would leave a scum line quick. never had that be a problem fishing fresh water lakes. Otherwise not much difference

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10 hours ago, fishnkamp said:

When I owned my two fiberglass boats the biggest difference was 2 waxings a year and a full wipe down when I pulled out. Be aware i was running on the Potomac or Upper Chesapeake Bay both of which would leave a scom line quick. never had that be a problem fishing fresh water lakes. Otherwise not much difference

Thanks fishnkamp. So is it true that you will spend more money on towing from place to place. I can't see that because the glass boat is only like 70lbs heavier. Also I've heard that on the water fuel consumption is higher in a glass boat from some reason. Does anyone know on that? I'm still not leaning one way or the other on whether to get a fiberglass or an aluminum. I understand that there a pros and cons with both but it's seeming like now a days they are pretty close. 

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4 hours ago, AEWblackeagle8 said:

Thanks fishnkamp. So is it true that you will spend more money on towing from place to place. I can't see that because the glass boat is only like 70lbs heavier. Also I've heard that on the water fuel consumption is higher in a glass boat from some reason. Does anyone know on that? I'm still not leaning one way or the other on whether to get a fiberglass or an aluminum. I understand that there a pros and cons with both but it's seeming like now a days they are pretty close. 

With the weights being close you aren't going to notice a difference in fuel consumption while pulling. You won't notice much while on the water either. The reason most people say aluminum is better on gas than fiberglass is because aluminum is usually rated for a smaller motor. A good comparison for this would be to compare a Tracker PT 175 to a Ranger 518. Overall length wise there's only about 6 inches difference. The Tracker is lighter and is better on gas because even though they're rated for a 75, a ton of them come from the factory with a 50 which is satisfactory for that boat. The 518 isn't a great deal longer, but it's considerably wider as well as having many more creature comforts which do add weight. They're also rated for a 200 and most come with that. Are you going to burn more gas pulling it around as well as running on the water? Absolutely, but when you compare similar sized boats with similar sized motors, there's not going to be a lot of difference in cost to operate either. 

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It depends on your needs

 

Im getting into tourney fishing but most of my fishing is done personally in small woody waters where i bang into a lot of woods and rocks. 

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Although it does not have a center rod locker like the Z117 had, I like this layout much better because of the tackle storage and step cooler. There is still plenty of rod storage with 10 rod tubes and the ability to store up to 8' long rods inside.

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The biggest difference between aluminum and glass bass boats is stability in waves while fishing up front using the trolling motor and that is where you spend 90% or more of your time on the water. The Z175 with 115 hp should run about 50 mph and fast enough for bass fishing and that would be my choice.

Tom

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1 hour ago, WRB said:

The biggest difference between aluminum and glass bass boats is stability in waves while fishing up front using the trolling motor and that is where you spend 90% or more of your time on the water. The Z175 with 115 hp should run about 50 mph and fast enough for bass fishing and that would be my choice.

Tom

 

Do you think the Lund Pro-V Bass would be as stable up front a comparable fiberglass boat? It has a 96" beam I think. 

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15 minutes ago, tcbass said:

 

Do you think the Lund Pro-V Bass would be as stable up front a comparable fiberglass boat? It has a 96" beam I think. 

The beam does not equal stability, the bottom width does. I promise you will find no fishing boat more stable then a Lund  

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46 minutes ago, tcbass said:

 

Do you think the Lund Pro-V Bass would be as stable up front a comparable fiberglass boat? It has a 96" beam I think. 

Without comparing one to the other ~ my Pro V Bass is plenty stable.

Check it out.

btw - there's no fish catch here - just a lot of casting into a very stiff wind.

A-Jay

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Between the RT188 and the Ranger z175 - the best comparison/answer would be the Triton 179 TRX.  It's actually 18'-6" and 91 wide and 115 hp.  $24k.  It would be my choice of those 3 boats anyway --

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compare Z518 glass bass boat 18'8" to the RT 188, 18'8" aluminum bass boat than you have apples to apples. The Lund is a high free board multi species boat and is very stable but not what  OP was inquiring about.

I believe the Z175 is a more fishable boat than the RT188.

Tom

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4 hours ago, A-Jay said:

Without comparing one to the other ~ my Pro V Bass is plenty stable.

Check it out.

btw - there's no fish catch here - just a lot of casting into a very stiff wind.

A-Jay

 

You've had glassboats, right? How stable is your Lund Pro-V Bass compared to a comparable glass boat?

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4 minutes ago, tcbass said:

 

You've had glassboats, right? How stable is your Lund Pro-V Bass compared to a comparable glass boat?

My description and or opinion regarding the stability of this boat as it compares to a glass boat really doesn't matter here.  Of course I'm bias.  I made this purchase for several reasons and safe rough water stability was one of them.

You'll need to get out on the water a Lund Pro V Bass Boat and see for yourself just how it compares to your Stratos VLO - otherwise you're just regurgitating my or someone else's opinion.

Incidentally, I've not owned glass, I don't care for them.

A-Jay

 

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4 minutes ago, A-Jay said:

 

My description and or opinion regarding the stability of this boat as it compares to a glass boat really doesn't matter here.  Of course I'm bias.  I made this purchase for several reasons and safe rough water stability was one of them.

You'll need to get out on the water a Lund Pro V Bass Boat and see for yourself just how it compares to your Stratos VLO - otherwise you're just regurgitating my or someone else's opinion.

Incidentally, I've not owned glass, I don't care for them.

A-Jay

 

 

Opinions can be important. If someone has experience in certain areas you can learn from them. 

I wasn't trying to compare it to my boat. Just seeing if you had experience with a glass boat and the Lund and what your thoughts on stability for both were. 

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Two very different boats, glass bass boats are low free board, you are close to the water surface.

Glass boats are heavier than aluminum boats and don't raise with wave action like aluminum does, a 2' wave will wash over the bow in the glass boat using the trolling motor, aluminum raises up the wave so it doesn't wash over like it will with a glass low freeboard boat, you are wet and aluminum high free board you are dry. The difference you are more stable in the glass bass boat, drier in the aluminum bait.

Northern anglers like to pull their boats onto rocky shores, get out for lunch and can't do that with a glass boat.

Tom

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15 minutes ago, WRB said:

Two very different boats, glass bass boats are low free board, you are close to the water surface.

Glass boats are heavier than aluminum boats and don't raise with wave action like aluminum does, a 2' wave will wash over the bow in the glass boat using the trolling motor, aluminum raises up the wave so it doesn't wash over like it will with a glass low freeboard boat, you are wet and aluminum high free board you are dry. The difference you are more stable in the glass bass boat, drier in the aluminum bait.

Northern anglers like to pull their boats onto rocky shores, get out for lunch and can't do that with a glass boat.

Tom

 

Cool. Thanks for the explanation.

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