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Bluefin54

Best brand / value deep V aluminum boat?

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I am thinking about getting a new boat this winter and am curious of what you guys like. I am looking for an 18’ aluminum deep v boat. I’ll be fishing finger lakes, the St Lawrence and would like to use it on lake O for salmon as well. I’m looking for your opinion on the best brand / value out there? I’ll say Lund is out of my price range, but I’ve been looking at crestliner and starcraft.

 

Any recommendations?

 

Thanks

Mike

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United

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Do not know Crestliner ! My Starcraft continues to serve my well since 1984 , used on the big water of Lake Ontario and less so on Lake Erie ! Have to pick your days . If I had to do it again [a lot has changed in boating since 1984 ] I would go with a 19 ft. Lund with a Yamaha OB . Are you buying new or used ? Boat shows can be a deal because the vendor usually does not want to bring the boats back to the store !

Bottom line is often you get what you pay for !

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Thanks for the reply, thinking new just because used boats of this style are still demanding a premium price. My plan is to research and get opinions, then check out the boat show this winter


Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United

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I have had two Lunds since the early 90's (current Lund is 2012) and can't say anything bad about them. I have friends that have had good luck with Crestliner too.

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I owned a Crestliner 1750 for 11 yrs and now own a Alumacraft 1850. No complaints on either. All the boats mentioned are good. I'd just go with the best deal you can get. I'd also consider the dealer reputation. 

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I have been looking as well, Mike.  If I go Aluminum, it will either be the Starcraft STX or the new Vexus ADX.  With that said...my Tracker may be going up for sale soon :smile:

 

--Joe

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Thanks guys! I figure sticking with a reputable manufacture and finding the boat that fits me the best is the way to go.

Joe, why the change from your tracker?


Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United

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I want to get into something a little larger.  I have a lot of interest in getting out on Erie more often.  The extra length will help out with that.  Also, I want to have a kicker motor for peace of mind.  I looked into adding the kicker to the Tracker, but feel the cost can be put towards a new boat with new features that I would enjoy having. 

 

Someone is going to love the Tracker and get some amazing use out of it for sure (especially with all the upgrades/tech on it)!

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FYI that Lund and Crestliner share the same owner and are made in same factory.  Lund uses riveted construction and Crestliner is welded. Models and features slightly different but price point probably pretty similar.  Same company owns Mercury so most are Mercury powered.

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I have been happy with Mirrocraft Aggressor that I have been running for 10 years.  One neat thing they do is spray the interior hull with spray on bedliner.  Really quiets things down.  1/4" aluminum floor too.

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The Bluefin, Starcraft and Sylvan are all made in the same factory. When the founder died he left it to his children  who decided that they would each start a different brand while using the factory that their dad had left them. So no difference between them. nowadays  it is run under an umbrella company called Smokercraft.  A better question for aluminum boating would be: Welded or riveted?

there are plenty of horror stories about welded aluminum boats. (Tracker), but others swear by them, If you intend to buy new, make sure that the dealer will go the extra mile. (plenty of horror stories there too)

 Most important, is becoming a member of BoatUS. When you have the backing of that organisation most dealers and manufactorers will try to make sure that you are happy.

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I own an 18' Lund Sport Angler, definitely wasn't cheap but I haven't had any issues. Most are factory powered with Mercs but Honda is an option. Mine has Honda power 115 main with a 9.9 kicker. You can troll forever on 10 bucks. No matter what 18 footer you buy, you'll have to pick your days on Ontario. Good luck, Matt

Send me a pm if you would like more info

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I got a great deal on a 17.5 alumacraft and I love it....but if you want to spend significant time on the Great Lakes (I do)...I think you gotta look at Starcraft fishmasters, or crestliner commanders.  The Midwest walleye boat/crossover is just not the best aluminum design for Erie and Ontario, and the reality is....the best fishing in the state (maybe the US?) is in Erie and Ontario.

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The Hewescraft 19’ SeaRunner with the full height transom looks like a real nice lake trolling boat.


Sent from my iPhone using Lake Ontario United

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I know the older trackers with wood in the transom gave them a terrible reputation but my 2019 pgv165 has an all metal transom and all metal floors. A bit on the small side for the rough days for lake o but does fantastic in smaller bodies and light to trailer. I have hundreds of hours on it without so much as a hiccup, powered with the mercury 4 stroke 90.

Sent from my LGL322DL using Lake Ontario United mobile app

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It seemed when I had done some research recently comparing aluminum boats, the west coast boats from a quality and durability were top notch. Not knocking the other boats mentioned but when it comes down to it price has a lot to do with it. Thickness of the aluminum used in transom and hull is much more in the west coast boats like Duck worth and Hewscraft. Getting them over here after the sale is added cost as well but that’s the price you have to be willing to pay. If it’s too high of price, the next models mentioned like Crestliner and Lund would be good choices. Sometimes I felt like Lund was over priced for the name but when you look at the quality it’s worth it. Have heard and read some nightmares on Starcraft but the layout I love for the deep v design. There’s a couple pros on here that run them on Lake O with much success. Good luck on your purchase. Love to see what you end up with.


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My Lund and Starcraft had rivet problems. My Crestliner is welded aluminum and is now 18 years old with a solid hull.

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Brunswick owns Merc Whaler and many other boat companies....huge conglomerate (Bayliner, Lund, Crestliner, Rayglass, Searay etc.)

Edited by Sk8man

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3 hours ago, tuffishooker said:

Maybe off topic but who and were are Mercury engines manufactured ?

75 HP & up are Built in Wisconsin, USA

40-60HP are Built in China in a Mercury owned Plant

Small outboards up to 30HP are also built in Japan in a Tohatsu facility.

 

Edited by Rookie Fisherman

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The smaller Tohatsu and Merc motors are made in Japan.

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