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Modern boats are too big


eleeski
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I hate trailering! I just hauled a 76 Ski Nautique halfway around the world (the trip from Mecca to Stockton felt that long). But that little Nautique on it's single axle trailer was a lot easier to trailer than my 11MC on its tandem trailer. Note that the time I used a single axle trailer for my 04 MC was very exciting. My tow vehicle is a Ford Ranger - a monster truck by European standards but barely adequate for even the little boat.

 

The whole drive was spent designing a technically workable little boat. I'm sure it would be cheaper and net fewer hours to hire a boat transporter. But who wants to start a boat company with me?

 

Eric

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Carbon Pro seems sort of in this direction, no? Considerably lighter than the other options.

 

Also I recall a rumor that a 5th player was going to enter the fray around the time of Nationals, and I thought that rumor also mentioned a smaller boat. Maybe I just dreamed all that, though...

 

Also, I just made an appointment with a shrink because I agree with Eric.

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Perhaps it's because the majority of boat owners seem to want something their entire family & friends can ride in, not something only big enough for the driver and spotter.

 

Obviously the competitive skiers would buy the small boats, but would the companies make enough sales to warrant the R&D it would cost them?

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Resale drives the Bus in today's ski boat market, Smaller sub 19 footer closed bow would be hard to resell. As stated above the family wants in on the action and the smaller boat just will not facilitate the needs.

Want a smaller boat? build the market that it would be utilized in.

 

Me I am pretty comfortable in my 20' 200 on a tandem being pulled with my little

F-150....................Supercharged Lightning!-------------- And the Boat skis great too!

 

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Agreed... Just stating what we all already know, I think the general public wants to buy what they see pulling the pros, but also want the space for their famlies - basically why the open bow tournament boat took off. I find it amazing that they can build boats as big as they do, that perform much better than most of their counterparts of the past. I have a feeling 20' is be the max length however, and it'll be interesting to see the new 19' Prostar.
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I feel you. Ironically, the giant-family-friendly v-drive isn't even really wakeboarding friendly (the wider the beam, the more weight it takes to make a difference in the wake). Note that a Malibu Sportster (particularly 1998-2002) is a pretty nice boat that can fit on a single axle trailer and be towed by a typical v6 crossover with a 3500lb rating, and with the wedge and open bow it makes a great family multi-sport boat, with pretty good mileage.

 

If you want to see a tiny, failed experiment, check out the 93 Centurion Wave:

http://www.wakeworld.com/MB/Discus/messages/65921/551137.jpg

I think it was a 12' (14'?) hull, you could get a 302cc in it, the engine was in front of the driver, had tracking fins and a proper tow pylon if I recall. I think it came in under 1500lbs.

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It would be great if they could figure out a way to make direct drive boats similar in size to the 16 - 17.5 foot outboard boats of the 70's. Boats such as Glastrons, Carlsons, etc. I know the motor has to go somewhere, but it would be nice to keep it under 20 feet. Not sure why more companies don't follow the model or design of the SNOB, but do it at a lower price point than the Correct Craft boats.
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What ever happened to the engineers student working on a boat design. He actually posted line drawings of it. Had a throw back look to that of the old wood inboards with a barrel shaped back. I believe he went over how many regulations impact the size of boat that has to be built. It was not as cut and dry as just building that 17-19 footer. It was as if he could not go shorter based on what the boat needed to do and the regs in his way.

 

@andjules where is the pylon on that thing?

 

 

 

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@ShaneH, I have to agree... I find it very sad that MC is loosing touch with 3 event or slalom, even though they promote MB at any chance they get. MC is so far behind the times with the Carbon Pro, SN200 and the TXI. I understand they rather sell $150K boats to parents for their kids, but come on. Look at Centurion and Malibu! They are doing pretty darn well with their ski boats.

 

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@shaneh

"if"? Is that for real, like they may not update the 190/197? Could that mean they're giving up on 3 event? 200's are selling well, so I wouldn't think they'd want to submit defeat to CC, and Bu? Especially when the G series out taking on the X boats. They must make more in total overall margin dollars on the ps series than on the 300 yacht thing too?

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ProStar 190/197s are the lowest margin dollars of their boats. That said, it would appear that they are committed to redesigning other boats in their lineup first. They've done the x30, xstar, and now x10. I would put money on the x35 being next, even if it's only a top deck redesign. I wouldn't say they are giving up on 3 event at all. But a new pro star will be at best a 2014 boat as they don't have a firm hull design yet.
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"

What ever happened to the engineers student working on a boat design. He actually posted line drawings of it

 

@Wish, that gets me thinking. I'm a senior Mechanical Engineering student at GT; wouldn't it be super cool to work as an engineer for a boat company? Hmm... I may look into internships...

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@DooSPX - MB was out in Tennessee testing for about 4 months. He came back home a few months ago. From what I can tell, they put the hull testing on the backburner for a bit.

 

@swc5150 MC is no different than CC. CC didn't develop the G series and the 200 side by side. The did the 200 in 08-09, the G23 in 11, and the G25 in 12.

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why do you guys want a redesign of the current mc? It skis great for slalom, tricks better than nautique (so, I'm told), and is great for jumping.....

I think if I was in their shoes, I would take the "ain't broke-don't fix it" attitude. Redesign costs alot of money. How much better can it get?

CC changed it all up, and made several buyers (trickers and jumpers) not so happy....

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True, I didn't think terms of exact years, my bad. However, it seems like MC has revamped their entire wake line twice since updating the 197. After switching to CC in '06, I got some grief from my MC dealer. I told him I'll be back when MC puts out a new 190. Still waiting...
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Liquid d, I don't think a lot of slalom skiers would agree with your assessment of the MC. A lot of skiers find inconsistant wakes and pull from MC to MC. I have skied on some that were terrible and others that were OK (but still the worst of the 4 boats). It also lacks giddy up into the course. I hear its a great trick boat, but I don't trick.
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@THAN, @WISH, still around, I just havent had time for my own designs for awile. I went to work for a company that builds high end offshore boats and have been kept very busy with some new product designs.

 

The ski boat is something that I really want to do and would love to be able to someday build a company around. Wish is right about there being some limit as to how small a boat can be and still accomidate all of the things that are needed to have a good ski boat. It may turn out to be a good thing that I took the job that I did do to some of the research I have been involved with as of late dealing with stepped hull designs which may be aplicable to a ski boat hull.

 

As far as the new Prostar in March they were testing boats in LA, but the intro of the X-10 and delay of the X-Star pushed back the Prostar project. There has been a shake up in management at MC, so hopefully the new President, and new VP of Engineering will be slalom guys.

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@ liquid d

CC's shakeup cranked up sales numbers for them, and added some world records:) I actually agree on the "if it ain't broke", but the few 197's I've been in seem to fit the broke column, compared to the 196, 200 and TXi. Our family has owned 7 Prostars, so I'm not ripping them from the CC side of the fence.

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I would like to see the industry keep the 3 event boats at 20 feet or shorter. As they keep getting bigger they are more difficult to store and tow. I use my dad's Chrysler mini van to tow our 1994 Nautique(short distances only). If the boats keep getting bigger I may have to trade my car in on a Jeep Liberty which can tow 5000 lbs. I was taking a look at the SN200 it will fit on my lift, but I would have to measure it to see if it fits in the garage on the trailer. I like the SN200. I would like to see the industry also keep the boats 2500 lbs or less.
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While the MC wakes are better for tricks it is substantially worse at slower speeds than the newer designs from CC, Malibu and Centurion. At 28 off and shorter I don't think it makes a difference. If I was buying a new boat to practice behind I would probably buy the boat with the worst wakes that way if you draw an easier boat in a tournament it is a benefit.
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Yikes! I never intended the thread to drift into a bashing of any boat or cheerleading for another.

 

@andjules interesting idea, thanks - but not one of my dreams.

 

With the refinery fire yesterday and instability wherever there is crude, gas prices will force smaller tow vehicles (and a focus on more efficient boats). Boats will get smaller and lighter - the market will demand that. Clever design will make the boats not only perform as well as the current boats but be family friendly despite the compact size.

 

My drivathon musings require engine redesign. The crankshaft free hydraulic direct drive engine may be a little far fetched today but the possibilities tomorrow... Who wants to build engines with me?

 

Eric

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Hey 196 fans.... Look at your monitor.

 

Now take half of its width (assuming you have around a 15" monitor). That is the difference in length between a 196 and a 200. 6"

 

Now take half of the height. That is the difference in the width between a 196 and a 200. 4"

 

Is that what turns the ultimate ski boat into a boat that's too big?? It's not that much bigger. It's just designed better. Like if you compared a house built in the 60s vs today. Could be the same sq ft, but the modern home will appear bigger and have more usable space.

 

I have two wishes for a ski boat. Small wake and one that sells well. If these boats don't sell, promo boats will go away. Then tournaments become really interesting....

 

 

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@ClemsonDave It's not that much bigger. It's just designed better. Simply a matter of opinion. I've owned both in the past and currently own a 196 because I think it's a better design - not to mention, much more fuel efficient.

 

And, if promo boats don't sell then the "three year rule" will go away (which it should) and LOC's will become responsible for providing their own boats - it's already happening in some parts of the country.

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I agree on fuel efficiency. However the 196 doesn't drive as well, has less space and has a larger wake. Don't see how that makes it a better design but I guess to each their own.

 

Personally, I don't want to see the day when any 5-15 year old boat can be used in a tournament. Talk about people complaining...

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We pulled 6 rounds with an 02 and 08 196 in June and had lots of PBs. The long liners, slow speeds and short line skiers all loved it. I will take a 2002 196 over any of the big three any day of the week. I still dont agree that the 196 doesn't drive well. Go spend time driving the big 3 at a tourney and then get in a 196 and drive it. It feels like a sports car and tracks every bit as good. If you cant drive a 196 straight, you need not drive. There is simply no reason that the boat is no longer made.
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FYI, the best sports cars in the world are pretty big. Ferrari, Lamborghini, Pagani, Aston Martin, etc. are all very big/wide/low cars. Wider almost always means it tracks better. A 196 can do a flat spin better than a 200, but not sure why that is needed. I have no problem with driving either, but if I was going to be pulled by a rookie, I'd rather them drive a 200. If I was going to pull a world record, I'd much rather be in a 200.

 

If you pulled someone behind both boats at long line, I'd be pretty shocked if they thought the wake was better on the 196. I pull my daughter at 17/LL. I bet the wake is half as big behind the 200s.

 

Before getting off on this tangent, my point was that a 200 is not THAT much bigger than a 196. Sorry we got off topic.

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It sure would be nice to see another engine platform than the venerable short block 5.7L. They put a marinized lexus 4.0L in the Toyota Epic boats almost 15 years ago - plenty of power, lower weight, way better efficiency. Can't help but think we could do much better today.
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Oops, I agree with @MS - the 196 is better than the 200. The trick table behind the 200 is far superior (some 196s had acceptable trick tables while others were unskiable - suggesting that my prime complaint with the 196 was easily solved (if CC cared)). But the trick wake on the 196 was wonderfully steep and crisp - not flat and indistinct. Of course a crisp trick wake is not going to be a nice slower speed and longer rope wake, that's the tradeoff that exists if we want three event boats. I curse all you slalom specialists with "may your children enjoy and excel at tricks!"

 

@clemsondave is also right. The size differences between those boats are not massive. The 6" difference might (?) still fit in the boathouse but another 6" certainly won't. And none of the modern boats are comfortable to tow.

 

Size does not make a boat good. The best all around boat I have ever skied behind is a 79 Ameican Skier. Great trick wake of course. I have run many of my rare 35offs behind that boat. Plus it is an excellent slalom entry level boat. If the engine took up a bit less of the interior it would be a reasonable family party boat. Plus it tows well. I also liked the little Stars and Stripes Mastercrafts of that era.

 

Eric

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Thinking about it further, guys like me are the reason (or problem)why these boats are getting bigger - sorry all! I want a world class wake and pull, but I want room to lounge around and cruise with my family. I want to be able to comfortably seat 6 people, and the 200 is perfect for that. I loved our 196's, but it was so cramped for family use. I totally understand why hardcore tourny guys want a little 196, as the comforts of the 200 are overkill for your needs. Plus they tow considerably more than I ever would need to. From CC's viewpoint however, they want people like me to see records being set behind the boat that I'll purchase. Perception is reality, and I never really thought of the 206 as hardcore ski boat, as it was never used in tournaments (however great it may have been). So families like mine are responsible. If the 200 wasn't so awesome, I'd feel a lot worse about it;)
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@clemsondave - I was prepared to use my 5 year old 196 in my June record if we ran late and the promos had to hit the road. I got an exception from our regional towboat rep. No one was complaining. In fact, they wanted it in the water!!

 

And the day you dread is already here. For our backyard "C" tournaments, we use a 2007 SN and 2008 Malibu. It's happening more and more around the country as promo boats become scarcer. As long as the boat has ZO, most folks don't care.

 

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