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Best Bowriders on the Big Lakes

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Old 01-28-2018, 08:41 AM
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Default Best Bowriders on the Big Lakes

I am looking for a bow rider that I can tow to Table Rock and Lake of the Ozarks. 25-27 foot range, 4500 - 6,000 lbs.

My main wants is a comfortable ride and speed. I normally ride with a full load of people, 4 up front and 4 to in the back. We have been renting a deck boat that fits everyone well. It is sturdy and handles the chop great but the speed is not very good, not enough power for all the weight. I have trouble keeping up with the other boats we run with so it would be hard to not get a boat with 350+ hp (preferably 385+)

I know hull shape matters but how important is weight, besides speed. Remember I want to be able to cross the lake without too much pounding. I considered the following boats: Four Winns 250 Horizon and 260 Horizon, Azure/Cruiser AZ 258 and 278, Cobalt 262 BR, Checkmate 270 BR, Sea Ray 260BR

Pro and Cons?

Thx
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Old 01-28-2018, 10:57 AM
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Donzi has a 28zxo which is a bowrider with a small midcabin, has twin 350 mags, would get you around 70mph and can handle the chop better than most. Weight wise, you're in the ball park of 7000lbs. I would think you could find one between $40-50k depending on condition, trailer, etc. It'll also turn more heads
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Old 01-28-2018, 11:20 AM
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I don't know about any of the ones you listed except for the Checkmate 270BR. I had a Persuader 261. Wife decided we needed a MCOB for the grandkids. I looked hard at the 270 BR, but finding one in good shape was difficult. I finally found a "cream puff" in Idaho, but they thought it was worth a lot more than I did. Checkmate quit making them as regular production models, years ago. Don't know if they still make the closed bow version or not, but they probably still have the molds and would probably be able to build one if you wanted new. I'm not sure, but I think if you put 4 people up front, they are going to be cramped up. It's not that big an area, IMO. Also, the cabin door openings are very small for men to get through. My Persuader had a 24* deadrise, same as the 270 (different bottoms), but mine just beat me to death in snotty water. Maybe it was just my boat. If you check the Checkmate Forum site, you might find one there, as they pop up often enough. Also, those guys can give you lots more info about the 270

Also, you might consider finding a boat you like in closed bow and have it converted to MCOB or WTOB. If you find one cheap enough, you can get it done pretty reasonable. I found my current boat that way and bought it for a steal. Had the MCOB conversion done and was still inside my maximum budget. Just a thought.
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Old 01-28-2018, 06:41 PM
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I wouldn't normally bash Sea Ray but if the Great Lakes are as bad as you guys say, don't buy the Sea Ray.
I had a 270SLX and it was a great boat but horrible in the rough. The bow does not have a fine entry, it's broad to create all the space up front and hits waves front on pretty hard. It's also a 22 degree (?) deadrise which is a bit shallow for rough water.

I think many of your true bowriders are the same whereas the Donzi ZX and maybe Sunsation, Baja, Nordic and some others are derivatives of their hI-performance boats and have a deeper deadrise and finer entry but will not have as much room up front.

Dont know your budget but there's a guy on here trying to quit his Baja 277 islander with a 496. He's asking high 40's. I'll dig up the post if you're interested.

RR
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Old 01-28-2018, 10:53 PM
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If you want to run across the lake and not get pounded, (at LOTO) pick none of those and go ride in a 3 log pontoon of similar size with decent power, it will change your mind
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Old 01-29-2018, 05:34 AM
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This bowrider would be super fun at Table Rock and LOTO. It’s setup to run bigger water for what it is. Full hydraulic steering, offshore tabs and 560HP. Also not many people in the Midwest own DCBs.

2005 DCB 28 Extreme powerboat for sale in New Hampshire
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Old 01-29-2018, 06:56 AM
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Pontoons have their place, choppy/rough water is not it. There's a reason they aren't ever seen on the ocean, they aren't safe in bigger seas. Great party platforms and a ton of fun, but having people up forward on one in choppy water, could very easily stuff the bow. Too scary in rough waters, especially LOTO on the weekend.

The v bottoms above have deeper deadrises and will knife through the water, the pontoon would 'attempt' to ride on top. Not knocking pontoons, their great for what they're made for and would be fun Monday-Thursday on LOTO.

You could also look into small CC's, would allow you to carry more people, have the ease of outboards, the list goes on. If you want a head turner, love the sound of power and want the speed, I think you've got to stay with the faster V's listed above.
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Old 01-29-2018, 07:35 AM
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If you aren't against outboards...




Last edited by AZMIDLYF; 01-29-2018 at 07:37 AM.
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Old 01-29-2018, 07:42 AM
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And Lavey Craft will build a nice 2750 NuEra with I/O or outboards. They do a 29 as well.

​​​​​​https://www.offshoreonly.com/forums/...outboards.html
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Old 01-29-2018, 08:19 AM
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There is a Velocity mid cabin in the classifieds.

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