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Old 08-05-2015, 09:27   #16
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

Heading offshore on the east coast in a 19 footer can be done but probably should not be recommended. I like the classic Bertram idea. Great offshore boats & you can cruise them to the Keys or Bahamas. Speed really depends on how much horse power you throw at them. You can usually find one that has been repowered with diesels. Typically slower but much more efficient.
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Old 08-05-2015, 09:39   #17
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

Everything is a compromise, just as in sailboats. I'm a big fan of Bertram 31's, but if you are working and have limited fishing time the 18 knot speed is a big issue. Bertrams are basically planing submarines, wet and slow but solid as bricks. You pay extra for speed.

The best fishing is just after sunrise and just before dark. If the fishing grounds are 40 miles offshore, this is a LONG run in a Bertram. Therefore, if you got up at 4AM, meet your buddies at 5AM (sure,) launch at 5:30 it is still 8AM before lines are in the water.
At 9AM the best fishing is over. In a Fountain, lines are in at 6:30. You almost double your most productive trolling hours. Getting home is the same issue. You are tired, sweaty, have a migraine from the heat, dehydration, alcohol, pounding and want to f'ing get home. A big CC and you are home in one hour vs 2.5. BIG difference.

BTW, I didn't recommend anyone get a 19 footer and go offshore 40 miles... unless they are an expert. And I would rather be in a 19 foot BW than most boats, they were the weapon of choice by Navy Seals and the CIA. Unsinkable blah blah blah.

I remember once off St. Augustine I was about 35 miles offshore headed east on a calm day in an Albemarle 24 (nice boats) when out of nowhere a Fountain 31 passed me like I was standing still. The name on the side was Blue Bayou.
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Old 08-05-2015, 09:52   #18
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

One thing to keep in mind (regarding the missus going out with you), Some Center Consoles have an extended console with a door on the front. Inside that door is an enclosed head with privacy!
I still think a Cuddy is a good compromise and has a place for the head and for a seasick person to get into, or to get out of a down pour.... or even the sun if necessary.
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Old 08-05-2015, 10:08   #19
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
One thing to keep in mind (regarding the missus going out with you), Some Center Consoles have an extended console with a door on the front. Inside that door is an enclosed head with privacy!
I still think a Cuddy is a good compromise and has a place for the head and for a seasick person to get into, or to get out of a down pour.... or even the sun if necessary.


Take note of the nice enclosed cuddy cabin at 4:00 into the video. This boat is loaded with nice fishing features: large conveniently placed live bait tank (necessary for king mackerel fishing,) rocket launches, enclosed electronic box under the T-top, walk around access, spreader lights... it even has the super duper scuba tank fold down holders that actually hold a scuba tank securely at speed! The wife would love a place to lie down out of the sun and use the private facilities. Just don't let her ride in there going home! You can produce a Freddie Gray type injury in that cuddy cabin at 50 mph even in one foot waves. Human popcorn.

Fountain, Contender, Donzi... lots of good solid large CC boats used in the 40K range. Good engines are important, repowering with new is costly.
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Old 08-05-2015, 10:17   #20
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

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Originally Posted by Azul View Post
Everything is a compromise, just as in sailboats. I'm a big fan of Bertram 31's, but if you are working and have limited fishing time the 18 knot speed is a big issue. Bertrams are basically planing submarines, wet and slow but solid as bricks. You pay extra for speed.

The best fishing is just after sunrise and just before dark. If the fishing grounds are 40 miles offshore, this is a LONG run in a Bertram. Therefore, if you got up at 4AM, meet your buddies at 5AM (sure,) launch at 5:30 it is still 8AM before lines are in the water.
At 9AM the best fishing is over. In a Fountain, lines are in at 6:30. You almost double your most productive trolling hours. Getting home is the same issue. You are tired, sweaty, have a migraine from the heat, dehydration, alcohol, pounding and want to f'ing get home. A big CC and you are home in one hour vs 2.5. BIG difference.

BTW, I didn't recommend anyone get a 19 footer and go offshore 40 miles... unless they are an expert. And I would rather be in a 19 foot BW than most boats, they were the weapon of choice by Navy Seals and the CIA. Unsinkable blah blah blah.

I remember once off St. Augustine I was about 35 miles offshore headed east on a calm day in an Albemarle 24 (nice boats) when out of nowhere a Fountain 31 passed me like I was standing still. The name on the side was Blue Bayou.
Actually the Bertram will do low 30's with the right power. Blackfin made a copy that's pretty nice too.
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Old 08-05-2015, 11:14   #21
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

I would be comfortable with a 22 foot Panga ( Pangamarine >com )with a 90 to
125 HP 4 stroke and a 9.9 Yamaha 4 stroke sailboat kicker.

Best fuel economy and a good sea boat.
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Old 08-05-2015, 11:45   #22
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

Here was my dream fishing boat. I enjoyed it but now I can sail my 2 bedroom 2 bathroom luxury palace out a hundred miles without fuel and sleep comfortably to awake to the sunrise fishing.
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Old 08-05-2015, 11:47   #23
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

I tend to agree with the other posters. Here are some thoughts from someone who has fished offshore for over 40 years, occasionally even catching something. I would certainly encourage you to look at any boat 24 feet or over. The difference between a 20 and 24 or larger is significant in the sense of feeling like you are in a boat, especially important for the wife and kids. Higher freeboard is essential for an offshore boat as you can encounter sizeable seas even when forecasts are good.
You might consider a walk-around cuddy. Usually they have enough room in the cuddy for protection from a sudden storm, plus they usually have at least a portable head. Another good benefit is that you can stow and lock your rods and electronics in the cuddy if you choose to stop at a waterside restaurant, motel, or wish to explore a town along the water.
Hardtops are great but so are good bimini or T-tops. Sun protection can be the difference between your family or guests enjoying their day or wishing they had not joined you.
While I have had several good Center Consoles, starting in the 70s with a wonderful 24 ft. Stamas Tarpon, and I do love a strong CC...but I have also fished from Walk-arounds and found the benefits far outweigh the slightly more difficult walk forward to handle the lines. Rarely have I ever had to contend with large fish that required me to move from the stern. If the outboards are old 4 cycle or older 2 cycle, take them into a good repair facility and get them thoroughly checked out. It may cost a few hundred bucks but often a simple tune-up and some new parts are all that an older outboard needs. Find a good marine mechanic and ask him if he would run 40 miles from shore in the boat with his wife and kids.
All is personal preference and I do not know your family dynamics. But buy a good, used boat that fits your family's needs, not what you read in the fishing magazines. Don't be brainwashed by the boat editors. They rarely can afford the boats they recommend.
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Old 08-05-2015, 12:29   #24
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

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Actually the Bertram will do low 30's with the right power. Blackfin made a copy that's pretty nice too.
Please stick to the facts (or cite your references .) Cruise speed per Bertram31.com is 23K (under ideal conditions ie fresh bottom paint, slick calm with no wind or current) with twin 330 HP GAS engines, slower with diesels. Top speed is NOT cruise speed. Fuel burn with 660 HP gas engines would be roughly 66 gallons per hour at wide open throttle and half that at cruise. So... less than 1 MPG. You mentioned this is more efficient than outboards, not. A Fountain will do high 40's at 30 GPH cruise and still beat the Bertram in efficiency at 62 mph with 6 people on board. 18 to 20 knots is what to expect with a Bertram 28 or 31. When the diesel goes pop a single diesel replacement is more than the OP's budget.

Not to mention that a B31 with "the right power" fully reconditioned will go for far, far above the OP's budget.

From Bertram31.com:


Regular production ended in 1983, but 23 "Silver Anniversary" models were built in 1986 with oak interiors and custom hull stripping. Twin 330-hp Mercruiser gas engines powered the majority of the Bertram 31s with several GM, Cat, or Cummins diesels offered as options. The Mercs would cruise around 23 knots with a top speed of 32+ knots. Earlier diesel-powered Bertram 31s had less speed and horsepower but greatly improved range. (The fuel capacity increased in 1972 from 170 to 222 gallons.)

Over 500 changes were made to the Bertram 31 over the years; mostly cosmetic or hardware related. Note that the 31 Sportfish is visually the same boat without the cabin bulkhead and the Sedan is the same as the Sportfish without the flybridge.

Other models include the Express Cruiser, the Bahia Mar, & the Convertible or "Moppie".

Current trends are toward modern diesel conversions with the 4 and 6 cylinder inline Cummins and Yanmar being the most popular power plants. Fully restored or customized, diesel B31s can be valued as high as $175,000 & several have sold for over $200,000.
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Old 08-05-2015, 12:41   #25
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

Instead of taking our humble advice (I've only fished offshore 51 years including tournament king mackerel and marlin fishing for decades, since age 7) do this simple test: decide what type of fishing you would like to do then go on the internet and see what boats the fishing guides and tournament fisherman are using for that purpose.

I bought my Fountain used from an SKA Kingfishing tournament champion. His nickname was Smooth.

Once again, don't buy YOUR fishing boat based on what your wife needs. On days she will be willing to go out with you it will be so calm you could use a dinghy. This knowledge is based on extensive observation, conversations at work (think counseling) and two ex wives that said they loved fishing but lied. (Apologies to Marsha Bierman as an exception to the rule, any size 0 model types that are also exceptions please PM me immediately.)
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Old 08-05-2015, 13:22   #26
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

My top speed was 40+ but on a typical day the boat would catch air going over 15. On a smooth day I could throw away hundreds of $ and giggle. My old hull weighed 1400 lbs. The new one 18,000 lbs.
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Old 08-05-2015, 13:28   #27
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Azul View Post
Please stick to the facts (or cite your references .) Cruise speed per Bertram31.com is 23K (under ideal conditions ie fresh bottom paint, slick calm with no wind or current) with twin 330 HP GAS engines, slower with diesels. Top speed is NOT cruise speed. Fuel burn with 660 HP gas engines would be roughly 66 gallons per hour at wide open throttle and half that at cruise. So... less than 1 MPG. You mentioned this is more efficient than outboards, not. A Fountain will do high 40's at 30 GPH cruise and still beat the Bertram in efficiency at 62 mph with 6 people on board. 18 to 20 knots is what to expect with a Bertram 28 or 31. When the diesel goes pop a single diesel replacement is more than the OP's budget.

Not to mention that a B31 with "the right power" fully reconditioned will go for far, far above the OP's budget.

From Bertram31.com:


Regular production ended in 1983, but 23 "Silver Anniversary" models were built in 1986 with oak interiors and custom hull stripping. Twin 330-hp Mercruiser gas engines powered the majority of the Bertram 31s with several GM, Cat, or Cummins diesels offered as options. The Mercs would cruise around 23 knots with a top speed of 32+ knots. Earlier diesel-powered Bertram 31s had less speed and horsepower but greatly improved range. (The fuel capacity increased in 1972 from 170 to 222 gallons.)

Over 500 changes were made to the Bertram 31 over the years; mostly cosmetic or hardware related. Note that the 31 Sportfish is visually the same boat without the cabin bulkhead and the Sedan is the same as the Sportfish without the flybridge.

Other models include the Express Cruiser, the Bahia Mar, & the Convertible or "Moppie".

Current trends are toward modern diesel conversions with the 4 and 6 cylinder inline Cummins and Yanmar being the most popular power plants. Fully restored or customized, diesel B31s can be valued as high as $175,000 & several have sold for over $200,000.
Before you get your panties in a bunch read my posts. I said the Bertram would do low 30's. You verified it would do 32 so I was right. Actually, a friend of mines boat would do mid 30's & could cruise in the upper 20's. I said diesels were more efficient than the gas inboards it came with, not outboards. You verified I was right. In terms of sticking to the facts & citing references, unless you are a forum moderator I don't think you're in a position to make any rules here.
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Old 08-05-2015, 13:28   #28
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

Your getting a lot of good advice from those that have been there, done that.
All I'll add is don't get suckered into a "Bay" boat, not to go out.

as far as Crystal River, fishing is excellent, and the middle grounds are not that far out, and I think that is the kind of fishing you envision, so you can do both kind of fishing there.
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Old 08-05-2015, 20:31   #29
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

In the Crystal River area I think of kayaks and manatee, pontoon boats, bass boats, air boats and mullet fishing.

On the east coast I think of deep sea fishing.

I have owned small 16' to 19' runabout boats that I used for recreation on in-land lakes all my adult life. So I know launching a boat or retrieving a boat in the wind is tricky. I have been caught in a sudden rain storm and trying to put the sunbrella covers up in the driving rain and 40mph wind is not easy.

But I never felt my life was at risk. Being on the ocean changes all of that. Trying to spend a night on the ocean ...yikes, being caught in a storm or have engine trouble on the ocean is way different than on an in-land lake...night and day.

I would lean toward a 25' to 29' outboard powered center console with as many creature features as I can find.

Thanks for all the insight and ideas so far.

















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Old 08-05-2015, 21:31   #30
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Re: Fishing boats for east coast of Florida?

Quote:
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Before you get your panties in a bunch read my posts. I said the Bertram would do low 30's. You verified it would do 32 so I was right. Actually, a friend of mines boat would do mid 30's & could cruise in the upper 20's. I said diesels were more efficient than the gas inboards it came with, not outboards. You verified I was right. In terms of sticking to the facts & citing references, unless you are a forum moderator I don't think you're in a position to make any rules here.
Maybe you missed the smiley face? There was certainly no personal attack on my part, just correcting the misleading, uninformed and demonstrably incorrect statements you have made today when quoting me.

However, telling me my "panties are in a wad" is a personal attack.

First you imply that I am recommending that people take a 19 foot boat 40 miles offshore, when I made it quite clear that should only be done with extreme caution (and implied you had better know what you are doing) and with a very special boat.

If you want to say that I proved you right (got a good chuckle from that,) you are then recommending that the OP run a Bertram 31 at WOT for 40 miles at 66 gallons per hour? To achieve 0.5 MPG? Or did you miss as stated numerous times that he was planning on going 40 miles one way?

Not to mention quoting behind me today on another thread implying it is ridiculous to recommend to a young couple living aboard a Cape Dory 28- and at the same time saying that oldragbaggers (who have restored five sailboats) were also off base with that recommendation.
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