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small boat for inshore

Posted: Fri Nov 04, 2005 1:04 pm
by pikey
I have a small boat , 16ft, which I use for lake fishing. I was considering buying a small sea boat for inshore fishing, but was wondering if I bought a bigger engine for the 16 footer, would this do me for inshore sea fishing as well ? I'd pretty much be skirting along the coast to a few rock marks, with only 2 people in the boat. There'd be no out over wrecks and stuff like that, and I'd be kitted out with the appropriate safety equipment.

I've seen potters out in boats not much bigger than mine, in the same area I want to fish, and just thought I'd ask this before buying a bigger boat.


Posted: Fri Nov 04, 2005 1:44 pm
by x
Hi Pikey,

16ft would be a bit small for my liking for sea fishing, but more importantly than the length, how stable is the boat? Does it have inbuilt buoancy? Is it practical to row if your engine packs up? Do you know anything about the sea in general and the waters you intend to fish in particular - like tides, current strengths, where any shoals/overfalls/tide races are etc?

Questions like these are the ones you should be asking yourself.
If you are not sure, have somebody experienced with the sea look
at the boat.

Provided you can stay afloat in a lake, you're not likely to get 'lost' - no matter which way the wind is blowing, you'll always have a lee shore in a lake in a reasonably short distance - not the same as the sea.

As for the engine, there is a limit to how much you can put on any boat. Consult the manufacturers if in doubt. You didn't mention your current engine size.

I'm not trying to put you off, but beware advice from anyone that would say 'yes to all' without knowing your boat's characteristics or the area you intend to fish.

The fact you asked the question says to me that you need experienced advice and it's good that you asked now rather than when you're up to your neck in water. If there is a fishing port, yacht club etc near you, hit them up for a few answers. Anyone there would rather be answering your questions than reading about you in the papers...

You can still easily get into plenty of difficulties on a lake, but the sea is a lot more dangerous. You'll probably be a lot more confident and comfortable if you get a bit of local advice.

Posted: Fri Nov 04, 2005 2:10 pm
by Woody
Hi Pikey,
Depends on your boat and where you want to go. Is it a lakeboat or an inshore boat?
I have a 20 year old O' Sullivan Marine 15ft Supersar with a 10hp engine. It is designed for inshore. It has inbuilt buoyancy and is easy to row. I am a fair weather boater and I have only really ever used it in rough weather on Lough Derg (no comparison to sea) and it handled fine. It is has been used for years to skirt around the Clare coastline and has never given any trouble (can't same the same about trailers and engines.)
Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

Posted: Fri Nov 04, 2005 2:44 pm
by pikey
Thanks for the replies lads.
To answer a few questions, I know the area and marks fairly well as I have fished it for about 6 years with a local skipper. At no point would I be more than 200 - 300 yards from shore. The engine is a Mariner 20, and I have a Seagull 4 as backup and a decent set of oars.
Also, I'm a bit of a fair weather fisherman - so I'd only consider going out on a calm day (I know the sea is unpredictable, but first sign of a swell and I'd be dust !!!)

In truth the question was just gauging opinion, I have my heart set on a wee red sea hog (£3500) with a bigger engine, using the Mariner 20 engine as back up and keeping the Seagull 4 for the lake boat with a 36lb minn kota electric as back up.

Thanks again.


Posted: Fri Nov 04, 2005 10:56 pm
by The Dirty Fecker
a 20 hp engine is a bit too big for a back up engine. You will find it will cause your boat to have a permanent lean to one side. also the bracket and more importantly, fibreglass area used to support the engine would be under serious stress that could result in cracking. it is possible the boat in question has a large transom capable of housing two engines and this is possible but you would still likely have the lean. My own boat has a 90 HP and a 9.9 HP auxillary which is also rather large and heavy and i had to do a lot of reinforcment work until i was fully happy with it hanging off the end of the boat. Most auxillaries only go up to 5 hp butin my case i needed an engine with a bit of umph as i sometimes fish a fair bit out and wanted something that could handle a choppy sea and get me home if need be. the boat is too big for a 5 hp to be effective. A 16 ft sea hog for 3500 is a very good deal. especially if you already have a working 20 HP engine. If it turned out the boats existing engine was not very reliable you could always get by with the 20 HP providing you only had 2 in the boat. Sea Hog boats are very good boats second hand for the money you will pay for them. What model is it and what engine?

Posted: Sun Nov 06, 2005 3:11 pm
by pikey
Cheers DF, so the 4 horse and the 20 horse would do then ? The 20 is a mariner, the 4 is a seagull. Not sure what the boat is as I bought it second hand and it doesn't say anywhere on it what it is, but it's a sturdy wee yoke, very steady in rough water on big lakes.