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I am retiring in 2yrs and 3 months.  I will still work either part time or an interesting full-time job that likely won't pay well, but we will basically be on a fixed income with my pension.  My wife feels strongly that now is the time to buy our "retirement" fishing boat.  Something that we will use for fifteen years at least.  We have settled on a Tracker Pro Team 195TX.  It is at the very, very upper end of what we can buy.  We were looking at the Lowe Stingers and Tracker 175s when we stumbled on the 195.  It is a winner for us.  It's got a huge deck and plenty of power.  It needs a 24v TM upgrade but it's a great fishing platform and yet it's big enough and powerful enough (150hp) to pull my teenage son on a wakeboard and my wife can lay out on the enormous deck like it's a pleasure boat.  

 

Have any of you kept your bass boat for 15yrs or more?  Is this a logical tactic for us?  Just so you know, I am very particular about my stuff.  I bought my Harley in 2003.  I bought my 1968 Mustang in 1990.  I still own both of them.  We take care of our stuff but we are not experienced boat people so we need your input about:

1.  What do you think of our idea of buying our "retirement" boat now so it's paid off by the time I retire?

2.  What do you think of our choice of boat?  We will be 80% small/medium lake fishing and 20% pleasure boating.  We know there are "better" boats out there but at $26,500 this one is at our very upper limit.  We feel like this is the biggest all around best boat we can afford.  

 

This is a huge decision for us and we are long time shore fishers with little boat time.  We'll happily take any advice you would care to offer!  Thanks!

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If you find the right boat that suits what you like to do, you take care of it, then keeping it for 15 years is very reasonable. Next year, my "retirement" boat will be 30 years old. It was the right boat for me then, and It still suits me today.

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Hello and Welcome to Bass Resource ~

Congrats on your pending retirement - you'll no doubt enjoy it.

As for your boat choice & questions, unfortunately I do not have enough experience with that platform to offer what you need, but there are plenty of great folks here who do.

They will mostly likely be along here in a bit to hook you up.

Good Luck

A-Jay

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Thanks Scott!  That is exactly the kind of experience we were hoping to hear about.  

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Any new boat should last 15 years. Using one as a pleasure boat can take years off the life of the motor over one that is just for fishing. Fishing the motor gets little use. I bought a 14 year old boat last year that was just used for fishing the outboard and trolling motor both like new because he was a pan and cat fisherman and used both very little. One used for bass fishing the trolling motor get all the use. I worked for a boat shop for 8 summers. The ones that were pleasure boats, the motors were a lot shorter lived.

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My 2 cents is this is an excellent choice. I've been looking at the 175txw. You'll here people say it has a wood deck and wood rots. However you have a couple toys already so you know if you take care of them they'll last forever. I've seen boats that are 30 plus years old and still have the original deck. 

  There are better boats out there with better layouts, better quality materials, but Tracker makes great boats. If they didn't they wouldn't be the number 1 boats manufacturer. 

  Good luck and enjoy your boat!

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I bought my retirement boat in 2009 and still have it. I take very good care of it. I'm not retiring for 4 more years. I was going to retire in 2 years, but will stay for 4 more years. I just bought a new truck so I won't have any big surprises when I retire.

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@BigAngus752 How y'all are? 

 

I own a 1996 Stratos & while it aint as shiny as it once was it still catches fish.

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I think you made an excellent choice, and your expectations are not unreasonable.

The best of luck to you both.

 

Roger

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56 minutes ago, RUSS9999 said:

Any new boat should last 15 years. Using one as a pleasure boat can take years off the life of the motor over one that is just for fishing. Fishing the motor gets little use. I bought a 14 year old boat last year that was just used for fishing the outboard and trolling motor both like new because he was a pan and cat fisherman and used both very little. One used for bass fishing the trolling motor get all the use. I worked for a boat shop for 8 summers. The ones that were pleasure boats, the motors were a lot shorter lived.

That makes perfect sense.  We will play with the boat some, but like I said it will be very little compared to the time spent for bass and panfish.  

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22 hours ago, BigAngus752 said:

I am retiring in 2yrs and 3 months.  I will still work either part time or an interesting full-time job that likely won't pay well, but we will basically be on a fixed income with my pension.  My wife feels strongly that now is the time to buy our "retirement" fishing boat.  Something that we will use for fifteen years at least.  We have settled on a Tracker Pro Team 195TX.  It is at the very, very upper end of what we can buy.  We were looking at the Lowe Stingers and Tracker 175s when we stumbled on the 195.  It is a winner for us.  It's got a huge deck and plenty of power.  It needs a 24v TM upgrade but it's a great fishing platform and yet it's big enough and powerful enough (150hp) to pull my teenage son on a wakeboard and my wife can lay out on the enormous deck like it's a pleasure boat.  

 

Have any of you kept your bass boat for 15yrs or more?  Is this a logical tactic for us?  Just so you know, I am very particular about my stuff.  I bought my Harley in 2003.  I bought my 1968 Mustang in 1990.  I still own both of them.  We take care of our stuff but we are not experienced boat people so we need your input about:

1.  What do you think of our idea of buying our "retirement" boat now so it's paid off by the time I retire?

2.  What do you think of our choice of boat?  We will be 80% small/medium lake fishing and 20% pleasure boating.  We know there are "better" boats out there but at $26,500 this one is at our very upper limit.  We feel like this is the biggest all around best boat we can afford.  

 

This is a huge decision for us and we are long time shore fishers with little boat time.  We'll happily take any advice you would care to offer!  Thanks!

Have you looked at the 195txw tournament edition? This boat comes with 2 fish finders, 24v trolling motor, 3 bank charger, hydraulic steering, and a couple extra bells and whistles for $26,995 plus freight and prep. Something to look at.

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Tracker also has a 190 that may work well for you, especially if the 195 is at the top of your price range.

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23 hours ago, RoLo said:

 

I think you made an excellent choice, and your expectations are not unreasonable.

The best of luck to you both.

 

Roger

You should be fine as long as you can store it indoors when not in use. I bought my Champion new in 1998 and towed it to Okeechobee this year as well as many local outings and a trip to central Florida next year is being planned. My Harley's are 2006 and 1981 with over 50k miles on each. Storage may be your biggest issue as keeping them out of the sun when not being used is a big deal. You obviously know about maintenance. Best wishes

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Power heads are the big unknown.  They last anywhere from 30 minutes to 30+ years, no mater how well you take care of them they sometimes fail. If they are under warranty it's no big deal.  I've seen boats that sold for $40K a year earlier go for less than $15K because the motor was blown and out of warranty.  I'm retired military and live on a limited fixed income. Being retired, the last thing I want is a payment hanging over my head. Take your time buy a nice used boat that's the exact model you want, garage kept, well cared for, and compression check it.  If you have to drive a thousand miles to get it, check the tires before you drive home.  If twenty years from now you tell us your on your second retirement boat, it's all good.  Just an opinion, I would give you the same advice on buying a car after retiring.  I had rather take the chance on several boats keeping me on the water over the years, than to put everything into one.

 

My boat is a 2002 ProCraft 185Pro DC that I bought used that's still in great shape, my harley is a 2007 FLHRSE3 I bought new after a guy drove over me on my old bike. I worked for Westmarine as a tech at the call center for 8 years as my fun job.

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On 6/19/2017 at 8:33 AM, 12poundbass said:

Have you looked at the 195txw tournament edition? This boat comes with 2 fish finders, 24v trolling motor, 3 bank charger, hydraulic steering, and a couple extra bells and whistles for $26,995 plus freight and prep. Something to look at.

No!  Hadn't even heard of it.  Nice.  

23 hours ago, Al Wolbach said:

You should be fine as long as you can store it indoors when not in use. I bought my Champion new in 1998 and towed it to Okeechobee this year as well as many local outings and a trip to central Florida next year is being planned. My Harley's are 2006 and 1981 with over 50k miles on each. Storage may be your biggest issue as keeping them out of the sun when not being used is a big deal. You obviously know about maintenance. Best wishes

That's the biggest issue for me and the Tracker.  We cannot store it inside.  I could buy the best cover in the world but I would still worry about the wood.  We are browsing some aluminum decks now.  REally liking the Crestliner VT18 and the Ranger 188C.  

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5 minutes ago, BigAngus752 said:

No!  Hadn't even heard of it.  Nice.  

That's the biggest issue for me and the Tracker.  We cannot store it inside.  I could buy the best cover in the world but I would still worry about the wood.  We are browsing some aluminum decks now.  REally liking the Crestliner VT18 and the Ranger 188C.  

The only way that floor will go bad in the next 2 decades is if it's submerged for long periods of time. If the wood floors were a problem they would 've changed to tin by now, and if you actually look at the decks themselves there's not that much wood. All the storage is tin. The 175TXW has a 32sq ft deck, with the lids being tin I'd guess 70% is wood. 

  I'm not trying to sway you one way or another. I'm just giving you the info you need so you get as much enjoyment out of your retirement as possible. 

  By the way the 195TXW tournament edition is new for 2017.

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Any of the boats you've mentioned would work. They'd all last forever with regular maintenance.

 

One of the first things that shows the age on a boat, especially a fishing boat, is the carpet on the deck. Although it's comfy underfoot, it holds dirt and moisture. You might consider getting one without carpet.

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4 minutes ago, PECo said:

Any of the boats you've mentioned would work. They'd all last forever with regular maintenance.

 

One of the first things that shows the age on a boat, especially a fishing boat, is the carpet on the deck. Although it's comfy underfoot, it holds dirt and moisture. You might consider getting one without carpet.

My preference also but my wife disagrees.  She would rather be comfy barefoot or sitting on the deck and have to pay for carpet replacement in the future.  Hey, when your wife is gung-ho about getting a fishing boat you don't argue the little things!

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18 minutes ago, BigAngus752 said:

My preference also but my wife disagrees.  She would rather be comfy barefoot or sitting on the deck and have to pay for carpet replacement in the future.  Hey, when your wife is gung-ho about getting a fishing boat you don't argue the little things!

If momma ain't happy nobody's happy. If daddy ain't happy nobody cares!

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A boat from new should definitely last 15 years. My current boat is a 97 Ranger and it still functions like new. I've owned the boat going on 3 seasons. The boat I owned before that was an 83 Ranger, that also functioned as new. Aside from modifications I wanted to make, I didn't have to do any work to the boats themselves. 

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My main fishing boat is a 1966 StarCraft (which is used about 240 days a year), just sayin...  It hasn't had any big problems and is much more reliable than a newer 1993 stratos/Johnson boat that i also own.

 

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I am in the same boat ( pun intended)..

 

I really want a lund and am comfortable that it would last the test of time, but the price tag of the trackers are tough to ignore.

 

My next concern are the power plants.  I really want a Honda or Yamaha, but neither is an option.

15 yrs is a lot of time.

 

The only other thing in the back of my mind is resale.  While intending to hold for the long haul, life happens.

 

Good luck, and please let us know what you decide.

 

Al

 

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My boat is a 2005 Crestliner, bought used 4 seasons ago with 3 1/2 hours on the motor.  It was all but new in every way.

 

I paid a lot less than your $26,500 for it, and unless something really stupid happens, or my life changes for some reason...my wife will have to sell it when I die.

 

If the motor goes TU, I'll re-power.

 

If you take care of your stuff, you'll be fine for 15 years, mine is already 12...

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12 hours ago, IndianaFinesse said:

My main fishing boat is a 1966 StarCraft (which is used about 240 days a year), just sayin...  It hasn't had any big problems and is much more reliable than a newer 1993 stratos/Johnson boat that i also own.

 

240?!  That's living!

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8 hours ago, BigAngus752 said:

240?!  That's living!

Most of the trips are short 2-4 hours in the evening or whenever I have spare time.  Only about 50 of those are anywhere near all day, but its still awesome being able to fish so much now that I live on a lake.

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