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Ksam1234

Looking to buy first boat help

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Title says it all, looking to purchase my first boat ever. Looking for something 17-18 ft and that can handle the Great Lakes. I want to be able to fish Lake Erie but also small inland lakes.  I was looking at the tracker pro 175 , or the Lowe in the same 175 model. My budget is around 20,000$.. looking for some good and bad reviews , pros be cons of models. We have a cabelas near me that carries tracker and nitro and some other boat dealerships that have Lowe and Lund .. 

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First question is will you primarily be fishing Lake Erie and occasionally inland lakes or primarily fishing inland lakes and occasionally Lake Erie?

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1 hour ago, slonezp said:

First question is will you primarily be fishing Lake Erie and occasionally inland lakes or primarily fishing inland lakes and occasionally Lake Erie?

I would say 50/50 or maybe 60/40 with Lake Erie being 60. Wanna learn to chase those smallies all season. But I enjoy some inland lakes bc we have good lakes with Muskie and bass inland also. 

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You'll be fishing some big water and conditions change quick.  Would not go with a flat bottom and I'm sure you will get some "great" input from those up in that area.  Congrats on your new purchase and adventure.  Always fun to get a new floating tackle box.

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You're really going to have to pick and choose your days wisely and keep a sharp eye on the weather. A shallow mod v hull is not designed for rough conditions. I think you'd be better off going with a Pro Guide 175. That being said, it is still far from an ideal boat.

 

IMO your best option would be to find a used multi species boat in your price range that is more suited for the Great Lakes.

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My old 15' Sea Nymph deep-V with a 50 hp tiller could handle water that my 18' Xpress couldn't launch in.  I fished Ontario in that boat for years. Ontario is so deep, it takes a bit to get it churned up, so you have time to get back.  Erie is shallow and there's no margin for error.

 

This sent us back to the harbor after getting a winning limit.

erie07-X3.jpg

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1 hour ago, slonezp said:

You're really going to have to pick and choose your days wisely and keep a sharp eye on the weather. A shallow mod v hull is not designed for rough conditions. I think you'd be better off going with a Pro Guide 175. That being said, it is still far from an ideal boat.

 

IMO your best option would be to find a used multi species boat in your price range that is more suited for the Great Lakes.

Yeah I know I’m looking for a deep v , a flat bottom would be horrible for Lake Erie. The tracker pro v is a deep v style isn’t it? I added a couple photos of what I was talking about 

3CA61D66-04FA-4D04-B261-9095984378E1.jpeg

B5BA7FAA-65B2-4596-831C-34655A92AA9D.jpeg

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The top is a mod-v, the bottom is a deep-V.

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30 minutes ago, J Francho said:

The top is a mod-v, the bottom is a deep-V.

Thanks ! I cslled a few other places and one marina around us has Lund’s and polarcraft so I’m going to visit them. They said they had a 2008 18 ft polarcraft for 16,000$ but that seems expensive 

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You're in for sticker shock.  An 18' Lund outfitted the way I want is over $40K.

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3 minutes ago, J Francho said:

You're in for sticker shock.  An 18' Lund outfitted the way I want is over $40K.

Wow ha that’s crazy , I’m not looking for all the bells and whistles just yet, but the guy I work wth owns a Lund. It’s a 17 ft with a 60 HP motor. Came with basic stuff like a lowrance hook fish finder, trolling motor and some basic things. His only cost 19,000$ was hoping for something around the same 

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I can get the price well over $60, but I wouldn't be financing electronics.

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Just now, J Francho said:

I can get the price well over $60, but I wouldn't be financing electronics.

Your making me sad haha. I’ll just keep looking , what do you think about polarcraft ?

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5 minutes ago, Ksam1234 said:

what do you think about polarcraft ?

They're a nice boat, nicer than Trackers.  Go to the recent posts in the Show Your Ride thread, and maybe PM some of the owners of boats you're interested in.

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Take a look at Mirrocraft and Princecraft. Both make a quality hull suited for bigger water. Princecraft will run close to Lund in price. Mirrocraft will run midway between Lund and Tracker.

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1 minute ago, slonezp said:

Take a look at Mirrocraft and Princecraft. Both make a quality hull suited for bigger water. Princecraft will run close to Lund in price. Mirrocraft will run midway between Lund and Tracker.

Thank you, the only thing I worry about with tracker is the welded hull. I heard from multiple people that the hulls crack a lot compared to riveted. 

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Riveted hulls wont crack or warp. Lund, Alumacraft, Princecraft, and Mirrocraft big water boats are all riveted double plated hulls

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32 minutes ago, slonezp said:

Riveted hulls wont crack or warp. Lund, Alumacraft, Princecraft, and Mirrocraft big water boats are all riveted double plated hulls

Sounds like I want one of those , but also when I read online reviews a lot of people say go welded bc in time the rivets break and water gets in .. so idk! Ahh this is hard to figure out what is best 

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I currently own 2 Lunds and previously owned a Mirrocraft. None leaked a drop.

 

Modern aluminum boats are a far cry from yesteryear. There are plenty of people happy with welded rigs. I chose riveted after seeing 3 welded hulls that were warped. I didn't know the circumstances, just that they were warped. 

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Had both, Sea Nymph was rivets, Xpress was welded.  No issue with either.

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I went the used route and bought a 20' Stratos. paid $10k for it but 90% of my fishing is Erie, Detroit River and St. Claire. It handles all three on sketchy days really well.

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