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Old 09-09-2017, 12:52 PM   #1
thinkxingu
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Default Advice on Young Son's First Boat/Purchase

Hi! A friend of mine is selling the attached boat--would come with trailer, two trolling motors, gas tank, batteries, two seats, and two cushions.

Few questions: 1. Is this a good starter boat for the Hanson Cove (last cove before Greene's Basin) area? 2. My son's only 7, so it'll really be a couple years before he's using this on his own (I think?)--besides the batteries, will the rest keep OK if stored? 3. Is $1700 a good enough deal to buy early? I may be able to get it for less.

Thanks!

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Old 09-09-2017, 02:05 PM   #2
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You mention a gas tank but no info on an outboard motor. That would affect the price depending on Hp. age, condition, etc. Otherwise looks like a good boat for the cove. My daughter's first boat was a 12 ft MFG car topper with 6hp. We all had a lot of fun.
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Old 09-09-2017, 03:12 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Descant View Post
You mention a gas tank but no info on an outboard motor. That would affect the price depending on Hp. age, condition, etc. Otherwise looks like a good boat for the cove. My daughter's first boat was a 12 ft MFG car topper with 6hp. We all had a lot of fun.
Oops, no gas tank/motor--just the two electric motors and batteries. Could get it for $1300.

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Old 09-09-2017, 04:15 PM   #4
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Default Seems good

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Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
Oops, no gas tank/motor--just the two electric motors and batteries. Could get it for $1300.

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Great little package for a first boat for your location/situation. You get a trailer to pop it in & out at your association. Jon boats are comparitively stable vs semi-v, on quiet water. A transom mounted troll motor allows him to learn tiller motor steering without pull ropes/gas/too much power. Get some oars and he can learn to row and discover Hansons next year. Add a small used gas motor when ready. Alumacraft is a highly regarded alum. boat brand. I think you might look long & hard to find a better deal for $1300.
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Old 09-09-2017, 04:37 PM   #5
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Go for it. My 11 year old granddaughter soloed for the first time this summer in a 13 foot Whaler. Not too far from the house, but out of sight. She also successfully docked it. Wife was in the general area in a kayak just in case. Do the electric motors have a deadman cord like outboards?
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Old 09-09-2017, 05:00 PM   #6
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I like the idea of starting kids with an electric trolling motor as a tiller. I use a tiller to move my canoe in the fall and its great for a quiet ride around back waters. The only thing to consider is battery maintenance. You will have to pull that boat each time after use and haul the batteries (which are very heavy) to get them charged. It is something you will have to do for them for several years. The best case scenario is that you have garage space to back the trailer into and you just back it in, connect the charger and let it be. Its not a huge blocker for the purchase but if you have to leave the boat outside....consider picking up those batteries a few times before purchase and envision how you will be charging them. It is the only negative to trolling motors I can imaging in this role.

Remember that you have to register it with electric motors also. Yes, I got a ticket for my small 40# thrust trolling motor on my canoe in November some years back. I don't think there is any age restriction though. That alumacraft is solid and stable and a great fishing platform. Good luck!
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Old 09-09-2017, 05:01 PM   #7
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While I would prefer a V hull instead of the flat bottom of this john boat, you can't beat the price!

Let me know when you wish to buy an older Mercury 2.2 hp for it.
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Old 09-09-2017, 05:57 PM   #8
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The only thing to consider is battery maintenance. You will have to pull that boat each time after use and haul the batteries (which are very heavy) to get them charged. It is something you will have to do for them for several years.
Why wouldn't you leave the boat at the dock and just put the charger in the boat with an extension cord to the nearest outlet?
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Old 09-10-2017, 05:00 AM   #9
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Arrow A Trolling Motor as Primary Power...

There's a lot to consider with electric trolling motors. With our family situation, we've got four electric trolling motors kept in our crawl space! Five motors, except I've shortened one shaft for the canoe. (After keeping track of wires, easy for the home-handyman).

When selecting a motor for the canoe, I reach for the smallest one, which has the shortest shaft. (Photo below). It's light, gives the longest range, and moves the rowboat right along. Funny—that large bass will swim out to "challenge" the submerged lower unit!

When keeping the tiller's height reasonable for an adult, the long-shaft motor finds every rock with its propeller—and tips the canoe alarmingly when turned.

Batteries are expensive (nowadays), and often don't have the range expected when only two years old. 'Never experimented with a wind-charger, but that might be fun. When at the dock, a solar charger would reduce exposure to house current near water—a hazard.

Charging batteries slowly extends their lives. A "trickle-charger" ($10) uses house current, and will recharge about 60% overnight. It's almost too much charge for over-winter. A battery depleted of its charge will freeze. Don't store them on metal shelves. Don't allow any metal or metal jewelry to cross the terminals. When using a trickle-charger over winter, check the electrolyte level once a month. Add only distilled water.

"Deep-Cycle" batteries are made for boat applications. Is that what you're getting in the deal? Is there a hand-truck offered to move the batteries around? To save on damage to clothes, invest in a battery carrier ($10). Check with Consumer Reports to find the best value in a new battery purchase.

Jon-boats, which I associate with quiet bayous, are poorly suited to open water. Did you happen to see the rescuing Jon-boat after Hurricane Harvey with the 90-HP outboard?

Jon-boats have more "windage" than canoes, so you'll get even less range: passengers also affect range. I've always used two batteries: one to get "out", the other to return to the dock (and the charger). You'll need oars as a backup.

As for "value" in this purchase, can you sell the trailer and one motor? Storing a trailer is a nuisance. Not sure about a fire extinguisher requirement, but they're cheap, and a good idea anyway.

The learning curve for outboards is shallower, but for a youngster, there's more hazard with gasoline.

BTW: Water clarity at Ice-Out is astonishing: the rocks pictured are about 15 feet down.


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Old 09-10-2017, 05:41 AM   #10
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Default .... jon boats and rowing

I have an 11' jon boat, made by Lund, that I bought used for $400, with the flat bottom and square design, and it rows very well. When seated for rowing in the center seat, it is very stable, and can float about, like a fishing bobber, and handle motorboat wakes two to three feet high. It weighs about 70-lbs, all aluminum, has flotation foam under the three seats in case it gets flipped, (it has never flipped, not even once) and rows super-duper with oars 7' long. For best leverage and rowing speed, you want to get the longest wood oars that will fit. I like the pinned oar locks, with the pin going through the wood oar, which seem to make it a lot easier to row because the oar is held in the best rowing position without doing any feathering.

An electric trolling motor can be locked into the straight ahead position, and steering can be done with the oars, by using one oar somewhat like a rudder, and the heavy battery positioned in the center of the boat. An electric trolling motor on the stern totally changes the boat use or operation....as opposed to no motor and two oars. Probably best to start out with just two long oars, and experience the rowing before adding a motor. Rowing is exercise.

Suggest you remove the two swivel seats, remove the two motors and two batteries, remove the gas tank, and just go with two long wood oars, painted white for visibility. Rowing teaches a lot about wind, waves, and boating.
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Old 09-10-2017, 12:07 PM   #11
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Here's a similar package, gas, not electric, in Gilford for $900.
https://nh.craigslist.org/boa/d/12-f...265804179.html

If you google "dinghy for sale NH" you get several options, including several new ones from West Marine at about 1/2 the asking price of your neighbors jon boat. FLL missed this: Walmart has an offering for about $600.

Sounds like the trolling motors and batteries are not needed for the first couple of years, (ever?) just oars. So, are you buying something you don't need? I had five different boats from age 8-16 as my skills improved. Started with 8' dinghy (oars only) and moved up every couple of years.

I couldn't tell from the thread if you have to have a trailer, or the boat can be left at a dock or beach most of the time.

What does your son think of this boat? Maybe he should have some input.
What other bats have you looked at together? I thoroughly enjoyed going places, including boat shows, with my father "just to look at boats".
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Old 09-10-2017, 01:06 PM   #12
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Descant, I don't have a dock to keep the boat, but I may have a beach (not sure if I could find a spot in the common area of our association), but in general I think a trailer would be better.

It also sounds like, frankly, the electric stuff might be more annoying than I'm inclined to like, so I may end up passing on this.

My son is 7, BTW, so maybe he'll be out next year (he already has a kayak), but I'm thinking more about in a few years.

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Old 09-10-2017, 01:42 PM   #13
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I'd say that one posted on CL is exactly what you would want. I had a 3.5 0n a 12' boat much like that, that I was operating at the age of 9 ( it took me that long to convince my parents) also knowing most boating laws and navigation skills helped in my pursuit to get on the water and exploring by myself.or with friends and siblings.
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Old 09-10-2017, 06:48 PM   #14
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Default first boat

Alumacraft is a great boat and a long standing name as well. I spent many summers on Birch island and the Alumacraft I was allowed to use had a 5-1/2 HP Evinrude Fisherman motor. Great on gas consumption and my niece and myself ran this boat all day and forever. The motor was a 1955 which I have restored and runs like new. Great combo. The other Alumacraft had a Johnson 20 , only the BIG KIDS could use that!
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Old 09-10-2017, 09:54 PM   #15
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Default Trailer?

If you have to hook up a trailer and launch/retrieve every time your son wants to go rowing, you need a different solution. How about an inflatable that you can haul aboard your primary boat?
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Old 09-13-2017, 10:42 AM   #16
fatlazyless
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Default ..... make this boat great again!

Just $150 ....... in Hudson, NH ......Sea Nymph is a quality name ...... these small jon boats are light weight, row very good, and big surprise here ...... they are very stable with a rower seated in the middle seat .... capable for rowing down giant 40'-Lake Winnipesaukee monster rogue waves!

https://nh.craigslist.org/boa/d/12-s...289587781.html ... includes oars and oar locks... what a super deal!


About sixty dollars Rustoleum spray paint: 1-coat; self etching Rustoleum primer for aluminum, dark grey, 2-coat; color Rustoleum your choice, and you have a newbie boat. Probably good to go with the Rustoleum 'Comfort Grip' handle which works good....about 5.82 at Wal-mart. Or, brush on a coat of Rustoleum John Deere green, tractor paint, designed for painting a tractor.
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Old 09-13-2017, 11:20 AM   #17
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Seems like a GREAT deal to me for $1300.... That being said, sometimes life throws you a curveball. You can most likely get most of your $$$ back on a resale...

I say go for it!

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Old 09-16-2017, 03:28 AM   #18
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Lightbulb Options—Good...

If it wasn't for Lake Winnipesaukee's oversized-wake problem, I'd have suggested a square-stern canoe: power it up with paddles, oars, or with electric- or gas-powered propulsion. (Including Lehr- or Toshiba-propane).

A neighbor bought a damaged canoe, put in a wide transom, powered it with a 3.3 Evinrude: even with an adult at the helm, the danged thing absolutely flew!

A local legend!

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Just $150 ....... in Hudson, NH ......Sea Nymph is a quality name ...... these small jon boats are light weight, row very good, and big surprise here ...... they are very stable with a rower seated in the middle seat .... capable for rowing down giant 40'-Lake Winnipesaukee monster rogue waves! https://nh.craigslist.org/boa/d/12-s...289587781.html ... includes oars and oar locks... what a super deal! About sixty dollars Rustoleum spray paint: 1-coat; self etching Rustoleum primer for aluminum, dark grey, 2-coat; color Rustoleum your choice, and you have a newbie boat. Probably good to go with the Rustoleum 'Comfort Grip' handle which works good....about 5.82 at Wal-mart. Or, brush on a coat of Rustoleum John Deere green, tractor paint, designed for painting a tractor.
➸ While Sea Nymph is a good name, why would their jon boats row better than one with a pointed bow? (Which aren't so good in the slightest cross wind).

➸ And why the color green over "Sea-Tow" orange?

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Old 09-16-2017, 07:55 AM   #19
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Any one of these small row boats all row very well; a 12' v-hull, an 11' jon boat, or a 15' or 17' canoe. By sitting in the middle of any one boat, in the rowing position, it centers the weight and seems to make the boat more steady going over wakes and waves. With two aboard, the jon boat does surprisingly good, surviving 2-3' motorboat wakes out front my place at fl-3. After a few introductory rows with more confidence gained, it becomes fun hitting the wakes in the jon boat which bobs around like a cork.

I have an 11' Lund aluminum jon boat, and a 15' Sea Nymph aluminum canoe with an A-row-bic slide seat row rig with out extended oar locks, and both boats row very good. The canoe goes further and faster than the jon boat.

Relatively low priced; both boats cost about $400 each.....not including the oars.......from Craigslist.

For oars, I use the longest, light weight wood oars, that will fit, almost 7' long.....with pinned oar locks.

By not having a motor, gas or electric, the boat does not need annual state registration, or separate insurance, plus you get the exercise fun from rowing.

A-row-bic slide seat row rigs from the 1980's work good, were low priced, and are now impossible to find.

To get paint to really stick to an aluminum boat, what works good is the Rustoleum self etching primer for aluminum or stainless, dark gray, about $5.50/spray can, sold at Lowe's or Wal-Mart automobile body repair dept. This stuff is oil based, durable, and really sticks to aluminum good, and works with a top coat of latex or oil, spray or brush, color of your choice. Rustoleum makes farm equipment paint in about six different colors like Allis Chalmer's orange, International Harvester red, Ford blue, John Deere green, John Deere yellow, and Caterpillar yellow made in quarts and spray cans, sold by Service Star Hdwe in Lakeport and it is very durable and costs about $12/qt which is a steal of a deal for oil paint as good as it is.
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