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Build quality of Sonic

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Old 06-21-2011, 07:25 AM
  #21
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I have been in one Sonic. My experience was a little different. It was years ago at the Chcago boat show - the Looney Tunes themed Sonic. I found all of the vinyl to be randomly stapled under the seat cushions. It looked like the vinyl was trimmed off with a dull carpet knife. Compartments in the cockpit and cabin had raw exposed fiberglass everywhere. Based on that one experience I would say Sonics of that era may have a solid hull, but the one I was on had nowhere near the finish quality of a Formula.
was that the years of 2002 - 2005
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Old 06-21-2011, 07:45 AM
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both. the 31' Bullet has serious limits.
Hmmm, I cant argue the rough water capability of the 31 sonic cause Ive never been in one. I really like the Sonics and have considered buying one many times. What I can say is, I had a 92 Bullet that ran 82 through 2 to 3 ft chop with 575 HP per side ,Bravo's and Bblade 28P labbed Bravo 1 props. I seriously doubt a 31 sonic could run that speed......3 to 4ft I would have to start slowing down in the Bullet. IMO, it is a great boat for a 31 footer. No pizzing match here, but what limitations does the Bullet have for a boat its size?
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Old 06-21-2011, 07:53 AM
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Hmmm, I cant argue the rough water capability of the 31 sonic cause Ive never been in one. I really like the Sonics and have considered buying one many times. What I can say is, I had a 92 Bullet that ran 82 through 2 to 3 ft chop with 575 HP per side ,Bravo's and Bblade 28P labbed Bravo 1 props. I seriously doubt a 31 sonic could run that speed......3 to 4ft I would have to start slowing down in the Bullet. IMO, it is a great boat for a 31 footer. No pizzing match here, but what limitations does the Bullet have for a boat its size?
First, If you got your bullet to go 82 with any power I think it would be a first.. second.. the bullet likes to trip, especially in a following sea. The Sonic has better balance... It's hard to compare though... the Sonic's running bottom is 24" shorter then the bullet. Sorry, hope you don't take offense... I'm just not a big bullet fan.
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Old 06-21-2011, 08:11 AM
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First, If you got your bullet to go 82 with any power I think it would be a first...
FWIW, I can vouch for Kevin's old Bullet running low 80's with the power stated.
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Old 06-21-2011, 08:13 AM
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Sonic had a couple of bad years under Richard Hewitt's ownership. The first few boats with the new layup process had some issues.

And it sucks to say it, but Boat Show boats are often the worst quality a builder has to put out. You would THINK it would be the opposite, but materials delays, production delays, setbacks, shipping & logistics, etc. etc. often force a builder to put a rush on things. MOST builders build in enough time before a boat show boat must be finished, however it just doesn't always happen that way. Often you will see boats come right out of the boat show and go back to the factory to be "finished".

And by the way, there is nothing wrong with a Cigarette Bullet.
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Old 06-21-2011, 08:33 AM
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First, If you got your bullet to go 82 with any power I think it would be a first.. second.. the bullet likes to trip, especially in a following sea. The Sonic has better balance... It's hard to compare though... the Sonic's running bottom is 24" shorter then the bullet. Sorry, hope you don't take offense... I'm just not a big bullet fan.
I definatley agree in with the tripping, I just attributed that to its length but its definately true. As far as speed, the Bullet CAN be brought to life, needs to be set up properly. This boat actually ran 80 in flat water! I think Brett had my boats propping nailed...No offense taken, I just may be one of those "weird" Cig owners! Hahaha
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Old 06-21-2011, 09:07 AM
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I definatley agree in with the tripping, I just attributed that to its length but its definately true. As far as speed, the Bullet CAN be brought to life, needs to be set up properly. This boat actually ran 80 in flat water! I think Brett had my boats propping nailed...No offense taken, I just may be one of those "weird" Cig owners! Hahaha
In my opinion, the bullet has the rocker of a 35 or a 38 with the length of a 31. 30" tabs are a hugh benefit. The problem is with all this rocker and big power, the boat wants to porpoise... resulting in added tab thus reducing the top end. Your boat should run faster with more fuel on board... right?

By the way, I will give you kudos on your driving ability as I'm sure the speeds you have achieved are partly attributed to that. Most cannot hold that delicate balance of trim and porpoise and quickly tab down.
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Old 06-21-2011, 09:15 AM
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Sonic had a couple of bad years under Richard Hewitt's ownership. The first few boats with the new layup process had some issues.

And it sucks to say it, but Boat Show boats are often the worst quality a builder has to put out. You would THINK it would be the opposite, but materials delays, production delays, setbacks, shipping & logistics, etc. etc. often force a builder to put a rush on things. MOST builders build in enough time before a boat show boat must be finished, however it just doesn't always happen that way. Often you will see boats come right out of the boat show and go back to the factory to be "finished".

And by the way, there is nothing wrong with a Cigarette Bullet.
I will agree with the "boat show" boats comment. When I was at Sonic in the early 80's it was always a rush to get the thing to the convention center or what ever venue we were at. I know many other builders, AT included, who go through similar issues.

As far as the bullet comment. The boat is what it is. There are better... and there are worse. I will say the bullet is the hardest of the Cigarette herd to sell. Many don't like the Jacksonian deck style and many of the issues that have been mentioned on this thread. I will say this. I would take a 31 bullet over a 28 Apache any day of the week.

I would really like to see someone do a bullet with small blocks and bravos. I think that combination would go a long way to solving some of these issues.
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Old 06-21-2011, 09:27 AM
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In my opinion, the bullet has the rocker of a 35 or a 38 with the length of a 31. 30" tabs are a hugh benefit. The problem is with all this rocker and big power, the boat wants to porpoise... resulting in added tab thus reducing the top end. Your boat should run faster with more fuel on board... right?

By the way, I will give you kudos on your driving ability as I'm sure the speeds you have achieved are partly attributed to that. Most cannot hold that delicate balance of trim and porpoise and quickly tab down.
Thanks for the kudos! I think the boat was dialed in quite nicely. The boat (unlike the 30 Mystique) really wasnt that bad as far as porpoising goes. In flat water, it tended to porpoise around 50 MPH. But in 1+ chop, it was fine. It responded to trim very well and carried the nose nicely, blower motors prolly helped that. Again, I believe Bblades prop work made a huge difference too...........Anyway, I dont want to ruin the Sonic thread. I would definately consider a 38 ft+ Sonic in the future. The newer Sonics IMO fit and finish is night and day compared to the 90's boats. Way more modern looking and the new colors really stand out. I also like that the Sonics are usually loaded with amenities!
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Old 06-21-2011, 09:39 AM
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...I know many other builders, AT included, who go through similar issues.
We'll just let the record state that you do not speak for Active Thunder.
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