Sailmonkey nailed it.
My wife and I have looked into this heaps as we are thinking exactly as you are. We have zero interest in bringing along any sort of fishing boat, including the CC boats mentioned above. We want a mobile bumper with a little emotor and a little gas engine
, probably a new Yamaha WaveRunner (they are IMO the best made most reliable things on the water), and some sort of race
boat from 21' to 24'. We are So Cal
boaters all our lives and naturally want to bring along something with which to ski fast. We've been involved in all sorts of boat racing
out here over the decades most of which isn't done anywhere else.
So we are thinking of building a new boat
out of CF or converting an old boat to something very different than how they were made. We might even build a new mold
for a new boat
There are other forums
specific that cover what you need to know in great detail. This site isn't really that into what you are looking to do IMO. There are a couple of shops in Florida that specialize in this also.
Here are some of the problems I've learned about.
1. You'll need to completely rebuild
the front of whatever you tow as nothing really comes from a factory ready for the beating you propose.
2. The reason all these guys use fishing boats is they are made to take on water and get rid of it fast. Your boat, and the ones we use, don't do that at all. So either you are gonna have to set up some sort of elaborate water exhaust
system on the tow'd boat or you are gonna have to come up with some way to cover your boat that will withstand mother nature. If you are like me you are thinking you can just winch
up the ski boat to close behind the mothership and it can sit there pretty in ugly water. But a quick study of the hows and whys involved in how those Florida guys have mastered towing will kill that idea. From what I can tell, the guys who have figured all this out will call your boat "too wet to be towed.
3. The towing rig is pretty complex and IMO it's complicated to use properly as well. IMO, from what I've read about doing this from the people who have cash to burn is you have to monitor
the tow'd boat all the time. Plus, I'd be looking for the pad for the tow'd boat to ride on the pad like we do for the skier out here in water ski racing
. So that means a winch as well. Or is it wench?
4. Your boat is an open-bow top and that is the worst of all possible scenarios because that means you can take on water from every side and corner of the boat.
5. It's only worth doing if the boat you want to take with you is something special that cannot be rented. Your boat is kind of a common rental style boat.
6. Make a list of everything you want to do with an extra watercraft, make another column on the list for exactly what you want to do with your bowrider, and then see what on that list can only be done with your bowrider and if there is anything then how important is that activity? Because you are gonna burn some real cash to set this up and to maintain it because those ropes are spendy and don't last forever. For example, if you want to water ski/tube/board/dive then is there something your bowrider can do that cannot be done with a 18' Whaler or a new Yamaha Waverunner? Both of those are relatively light and can be carried onboard.
7. Finally, you have to make an honest assessment of whether or not your Four Winns is of the quality and overbuild that can take the brutal abuse that comes from towing into seas. I mean you no disrespect, but your Four Winns isn't gonna take that abuse. Few factory boats can. You are gonna destroy that nice ski boat you have. For example, we raced a Scarab 26' Cv with a 600hp BBC and Merc outdrive for several years out here in the 90s. Was a very pretty boat IMO. Most of the time the boat ran on rivers and lakes out here so zero abuse. We did race
it in the Catalina
Ski Race several times plus a lot of race training in the channel for those races. We did not go out in bad weather
. Still, that was bit abusive. In less than five years that new boat was literally coming apart everywhere. Top speed was barely in the 70s so it wasn't like we were running it on the ragged edge either. I'm pretty sure that boat was a glass cloth layup
not a chopper gun layup
. So if yours is chopper gun layup then it was last significantly less and be more difficult to maintain.
When you have a list of unique activities only your bowrider can do, then be certain they are unique. For example, we love to ski fast and all that crap so we look for heaps of power. But I had a best friend decades ago who lived on a water ski lake that limited horsepower to 35. We were both over 6' tall and we skied that crappy little tri-hull he had every day all summer and had one of the best summers of our life. Sure, we had to dock
start or drop a ski and we got skilled in holding our breath until out of the water but it was simple and easy.
Here's a page for historical Boston Whaler specs and I think an 18' Whaler with a new 150 is a sweet spot for what you are after. The 18 isn't the hero the 13' is but I think the 18' is a great all-around boat that performs very well is nasty water out here. They are difficult to sink, have heaps of room as they are essentially the first open bow ski boat, and with a new EFI 150 you have real ski power and very little maintenance
plus they sip gas. But even with a Whaler you will have to have some Star Trek level bow eye fabricated. Also, I think I remember those Florida guys playing with towing the boat first before deciding where to put the boweye. It was all sensitive to weight and balance too.
Here's a Google
search for how to do it. You'll quickly find that group who know what they are doing. Just be forewarned, after several years you will spend more on creating and maintaining the setup than your boat is worth. That became clear to us. Hence our thinking of building a very fast CF race boat with minimum interior
. Building ne would allow us to fabricate a bow eye that was massive and tied into plus ran alongside full length stringers.
Whatever you do post it up!