Guests - If You want access to member only forums on FM. You will gain access only when you Sign-in or Sign-Up on Fishing Minnesota.

It's easy - LOOK UPPER right menu.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
n8ivefl

aluminum vs. fiberglass

10 posts in this topic

I'm looking into getting my first fishing boat and I have a couple of questions that I'd like answered besides from a catalog...

First, what are the pros & cons of glass vs. aluminum?

This would be a boat that I could use for bass/walleye fishing as well as one that I could enjoy with the wife on a lazy day on the river kind of thing.

Next, I know that I should get the most motor I can afford, but 2-stroke or 4?

Finally, I've heard that my first boat should be brand new as opposed to used, if possible. Any thoughts?

thanks!

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Glass

1) Hulls are shaped better, giving you a smoother and faster ride

2) More costly

3) It you hit a rock with it, you're in for costly repairs

4) Chicks dig 'em

Aluminum

1) Hull shape is limited, giving you a rougher ride

2) Less expensive

3) More durable (rocks = dents)

2 or 4 stroke depends on the use. For fishing and cruising, 4 stroke are nice because they run smoother and are much quieter. If you want to ski or wakeboard with it, 2 stroke is the way to go because you get a better holeshot and they weigh a lot less per horsepower.

I would avoid buying new unless you are loaded. Chances are likely with your first boat that you'll figure out things that you want and don't have and things that you have and don't need. I think new boats are a waste because you can find very nice used boats for a whole lot cheaper.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why were you told your first boat should be new? If you can get all or most of the features you are looking for in a used boat, why not? Unless they are abused boats should last pretty much a lifetime and in most cases you can tell if they've been beaten.

Oh, and OptiMax, chicks like the aluminums too! grin.gif

Bob

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you don't have much boating experience, I'd buy used and learn first. You'll feel better about the bumps and bruises! After two years, then go and buy new.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd go with used. That way you don't put the first scratch on it. I have a recommendation on the motor. Go with the 4 stroke. You will love the gas consumption, or lack there of.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow! Great info so far - I really appreciate the help! I actually read the new/used thing in an issue of Bassmaster last year.

Any other input would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just made the jump from alum to glass after running a lund for many years. 2 things jump out at me; first, the ride/quiet/handling in big waves...the new glass boat blows away what I was used to. Really a huge improvment, although to be fair I also went to a much bigger boat so it isn't an allpes to apples comparison. On the down side, fuel. More HP needed to push the heavier glass boat means more $$$ at the pump. Sacrifices must be made man...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have had both. Right now I have an aluminum. The glass are much better riding, Aluminum is lighter and easier to pull, load etc. and I am not as worried about it up north when I want to pull it up on an island.

I picked mine because it was the right floor plan etc for the same uses you are looking for. I also found a very slightly used model that saved me thousands of $$$$$$. If I would have found a similar set up in a glass I would have gone that way. I rather let someone else take the depreciation. If you buy right you can sell several years later with little loss in value.

Good luck. Enjoy the shopping - now is a good time to pick up some good deals. Most are looking forward to hunting and don't want to store a boat all winter. This is how I ended up getting a good deal on mine.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As others have said.. start used. Its cheaper. There are so many minor mistakes that a person will make on the water its unrealistic to start with a new boat.. especially fiberglass.

If you plan on spending quite a bit of time on the river, aluminum is definately the way to go. I dont want a boat I am afraid to beach, or have a major repair every time the finish is scuffed.. no thanks.

I would pick up a quality used boat to start with. If you insist on new, buy an off brand that is much less expensive(tracker, etc). They dont hold the resale, but its much less money to lose than having a $56K ranger fiberglass boat and your resale dropping to $30K because there is a gouge on the bottom where you beached the boat and got damaged by a small rock or log.

Start used with a boat that will work for ou and your family. In a few years, you will know what you want out of a boat, and will be able to better select a layout. Buy the boat that fits you then.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Personally, before you buy new OR used, I'd check out the dealer as well, no matter WHAT boat you buy.

Look them up on BBB's website, see if there are any issues.

Once you're happy with the dealer, then work on a price.

I just bought my first new boat about 2 months ago.

Yes, it was a Tracker, but also it was a new 2005, so I saved much on it as well.

It was between Tracker and SmokerCraft, because they're the only 2 floor plans that I wanted.

I too have a wife that wants to go, and also my father and I have a 4 year old, so I was somewhat limited to floorplans that would be most comfortable, along with having livewells in both the front and rear.

Alot of boats nowdays don't have a full 40"+ livewell in the boat, so that limited some right off the bat, because I do - do alot of Nothern / Muskie fishing.

Not that I take fish, but you never know when a buddy or business client might want to keep one.

Anyways, that's what it came down to me. Floorplan first, dealer second, price last. I've been in business for myself for 18 years now, and realize that price isn't everything.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0



  • Posts

    • Wanderer
      They look like they were fun.    15 boats on one spot, eh?  That's a ton!
    • Wheres_Walter
      We struggled on walleye on Frazer bay this saturday, so sunday morning I started throwing senkos.  Not quite consecutive casts like Wanderer, but i went all morning catching nothing, then caught these two cousins with 3 min of each other, smallie off the point, then the big mouth around the corner in a shallow bay.  18" smallie, 17" LMB. Good fun.    We did get about a dozen walleye on sunday night after the storms chased 15 boats away from the point we were fishing.  Mostly small, but a couple keepers.  Chartruese Jig and rainbows in about 10-12 FOW.  Couldn't buy a bite with a chub.  
    • monstermoose78
      I have good Jeremy how have you been doing. I need to get out fishing with you soon.
    • Walleye #1
      Stick in the Mud   I do think sometimes that those fish see so many jigs and shiners that something such as a crawler or leech is a great change up and will get bites.  Also with the bug hatches that are happening, those are two great baits.       Leech Lake   Leech Lake Walleyes once again found themselves spread out and in different areas and related to different pieces of Leech Lake structure.  Shiners and Leeches seemed to be the bait of choice for those Leech Lake Walleyes, but plastics are still catching some fish.  Be sure to stop in at Full Stringer Bait and Tackle, Swansons Bait and Tackle, Tutts Bait and Tackle, or Sportland Bait and Tackle for all your bait and tackle needs.     West End The LOA Fishing Guides found much of their success on the West End of Leech Lake.  Focusing in on the flats around West Goose in depths of 7-10ft of water, as well as the wind blown points such as Duck, Big Hardwoods, Ottertail, Pine, and Bowmans.  Sucker Bay also proved to have a good wind driven bite throughout the weekend.   A Jig and Minnow was the best presentation by far, but in most instances instead of jigging it, dragging or swimming it along the bottom seemed to work best, but when the front came in on Sunday the Leech Lake Walleyes were snapping and aggressively jigging was provoking the bite.  When things slowed down, slowing down with a lindy rig and leech put fish in the boat as well.  Green cabbage once again was a key to finding active walleyes and jumbo perch in 5-8ft of water.  Pitching an 1/8th oz KenKatch jig with a shiner caught Leech Lake Jumbos, Walleyes, and pike.  Slip bobbers and leeches/shiners also have put fish in the boat being either fished in the weeds or windblown points.   East End/Main Lake On the Main Lake, the rocks still were producing a great bite as well as some of the East End points such as Battle, Sugar, and Five Mile when the strong Westerly winds were blowing.  Annex, Submarine, Pelican, and North Bar were all producing fish in 10-14ft of water. Lindy Rigs with leeches or shiners seemed to work best, but the biggest fish still seem to want a 1/8th or 1/4oz jig and shiner.  
      Leech Lake Crappie and Bluegill fishing still remains strong.  When the weather warms up for a couple days both species are moving onto their beds and are actively feeding.  Looking to Boy Bay, Millers Bay, Shingobee, and Steamboat for the best action in 3-6 feet of water.  Just remember to use selective harvest as these fish are more vulnerable.  
    • Troy Smutka
      Memorial Weekend,      Hit Waconia Saturday morning for bass. Caught about 40 largemouth--most from 14 to 17 inches, with a few 17 and 18 inchers--and several nice pike. Fish were in cabbage out from bedding areas, in about 6 to 9 feet of water. Fish were scattered, lying in the weeds looking up for sunfish that are staging in these areas preparing to move in and bed. With this situation, we buzzed spinnerbaits and weedless spoons over and through the tops of the weeds, and the bass aggressively came up on them, as well as some pike. Had one lazy muskie follow as well. Got good footage for a bass segment of Fishing and Hunting the North Country on You Tube. Added footage of a couple smallies from out in the Hutch area Saturday evening. The bass fishing will continue to get better as the water warms, with more big ones, and the sunfish bedding bite is probably only a week or less away. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.    
    • Troy Smutka
      Memorial Weekend,      Out on Washington Saturday afternoon and evening after hitting Waconia for bass Saturday morning. Caught largemouth, smallmouth, and pike. Added footage of a couple smallies to the largemouth and pike footage from Waconia for a bass segment of Fishing and Hunting the North Country on You Tube. Caught the bass and pike on Washington in four to seven feet of water, out from bedding areas, on spinnerbaits, Rippin' Raps, and Shadow Raps. Up on Mille Lacs this coming weekend for a walleye tournament, then will be back out in the Hutch area the next weekend guiding. We were targeting bass this weekend, but got a tip that walleyes are biting on a couple Hutch area lakes on live bait. Good luck, and I will see you out there somewhere.
    • Cliff Wagenbach
      Geez Terry! Now you will be telling me that walleyes are only good muskie bait! Cliff
    • JeremyCampbell
      Nice report Cret Musta been a thrill getting that 9.75 Gill.  
    • JeremyCampbell
      Wow dude lol Sup Moose how you been?
    • guideman
      Vermilion has excellent fishing for both bass species   The east end has the best Smallmouth action and the west end has the best Largemouth action, however you can catch either on both sides of the lake.  For Smallmouth, rocks, docks, points, saddles, reeds, wood and the shoreline rubble are all very productive. Most of the green bass are found in or near the slop and the west end has the best of what they like the most. Spinnerbaits, any color as long as it's white, stick baits, cranks, topwaters, jigs, swim baits and soft plastics all work for Smallies. Jigs, topwaters(Frogs) plastics and a host of other stuff will catch the green bass. Have a great time, the midweek traffic is very minimal.   "Ace"   "It's just fishing man"