Jump to content

Welcome to TheMalibuCrew!

As a guest, you are welcome to poke around and view the majority of the content that we have to offer, but in order to post, search, contact members, and get full use out of the website you will need to Register for an Account. It's free and it's easy, so don't hesitate to join the TheMalibuCrew Family today!

Sign in to follow this  
Neil310

need help with BU boats

Recommended Posts

Neil310

I've decided to purchase my first boat this year and have narrowed it down to Malibu, Mastercraft and Nautique's. However, Mastercraft and Nautique's are looking too rich for me since my budget is $20K - $25K (with all necessary accessories). I live in Colorado so getting to a good lake might take some driving but the family likes Lake McConuaghy so we'll start there this summer. I was hoping to hear from some seasoned BU owners on which boat to consider that would fit within our budget. I'm limiting my chose’s to boats that tow well - skier's, waker's, secondarily cruising and no fishing. We have two young boys 3 and 6 who want to learn the water sports. Your comments and suggestions are greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
WakingMeHappy

I have a 99 Sunsetter that is a great all around boat. It has a Diamond hull but the wedge makes it good for boarders. None of us are all that great but we have fun. For that money you should be able to find something newer than what I have. My boat doesn't have ballast which is a "must have" if you want to get serious as your skills increase.

And welcome to the crew. :welcome::werule:

Edited by WakingMeHappy

Share this post


Link to post
Neil310

I have a 99 Sunsetter that is a great all around boat. It has a Diamond hull but the wedge makes it good for boarders. None of us are all that great but we have fun. For that money you should be able to find something newer than what I have. My boat doesn't have ballast which is a "must have" if you want to get serious as your skills increase.

And welcome to the crew. :welcome::werule:

Yea, the Sunsetter was the first BU boat I looked at and liked. It was a 2001 for ~$20K. Do you know what year the ballast was standard in the Sunsetter - if it even comes with it. Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Chia

I have a 99 Sunsetter that is a great all around boat. It has a Diamond hull but the wedge makes it good for boarders. None of us are all that great but we have fun. For that money you should be able to find something newer than what I have. My boat doesn't have ballast which is a "must have" if you want to get serious as your skills increase.

And welcome to the crew. :welcome::werule:

i will second the sunsetter, i had a 2001 ss vlx with the diamond hull that did it all. beautiful boat. i loved that boat. In that price range this is the boat i would be looking for.

Share this post


Link to post
Wakes

I think the direct drive boats are more versatile then the Vdrive boats. The Response, Echelon, or Sunsetter LXi are all fantastic ski boats that can throw quite nice wakeboard wakes with some ballast(which your kids wont need for awhile). Trade off is interior room. With 4-5 people I think an open bow direct drive is the ideal choice. If you will be carrying around 10 kids and 2 families a Vdrive would probably be a better choice because it offers a lot more interior space.

Direct drive boats seem to be going quite a bit cheaper than the Vdrives so you could probably get a pretty nice Response LXi in your price range if you decide a direct drive is the way to go.

Edited by Wakes

Share this post


Link to post
MalibuTime

Hey welcome to the crew! Boating is great family time and although my first 2 boats were and outboard and an I/O I am sold on the safety of inboards and the prop being tucked under the boat.

Since this is your first, there is a lot to consider so you don't make an expensive mistake.

1) What it the towing capacity of your tow vehicle? You want to have significant excess capacity, especially being in Colorado. By the time you add fuel, toys etc. the weight really adds up, so make sure you are not going to get into a heavy boat unless you have a strong tow rig.

2) Tandem or single axle. There are many threads here on that topic. Main thing is that your bearings are checked and you have good tires and a spare.

3) Gear list, depending on what you get with your boat, there is a lot of stuff you need to be legal, safe and able to ensure you have a full weekend of boating. There is a gear list in the resources section.

4) In terms of specific models, a V-drive is going to feel a lot more spacious than a direct drive. Keep in mind that towing little kids you are only going to be going 12-15 MPH, so even a direct drive is going to have a wake that seems huge, and the until they build up confidence to cross outside the wake they will be behind the boat.

5) I suggest staying 21' or shorter since this is your first boat. Docking,launching, retrieving all get more difficult as the size increases since you are dealing with more length and weight, and a boat that will catch more wind.

6) You could easily spend a couple grand on gear, plus sales tax, so don't forget to figure that in.

Good luck!

Edit- you will probably want a towing cover (Evolution Covers) and a bimini, since you will likely need to tow a bit to get to good lakes, and a bimini top is a life saver with kids so you can stay on the water all day.

Check out this page, lower right. New boat purchase info:

http://www.themalibucrew.com/forums/index.php?app=ccs

Edited by MalibuTime

Share this post


Link to post
Neil310

i will second the sunsetter, i had a 2001 ss vlx with the diamond hull that did it all. beautiful boat. i loved that boat. In that price range this is the boat i would be looking for.

Isn't the Sunsetter a direct dirve as opposed to a v-drive? Considering my family will more than likely want to wakeborad (or at least try it) as well as ski, is the Sunsetter a good wakeboarding boat?

Share this post


Link to post
MalibuTime

Isn't the Sunsetter a direct dirve as opposed to a v-drive? Considering my family will more than likely want to wakeborad (or at least try it) as well as ski, is the Sunsetter a good wakeboarding boat?

The main thing you want wakeboarding is a tower, to get the rope up high. You can wakeboard behind almost anything, so I wouldn't let a direct drive worry you. Even with a direct drive, wakeboarding speeds for kids you will likely not even see 18 mph for a few years, if that. The wake will be relatively huge to a 6-12 year old. If your kids end up being prodigies, well, you can deal with that then! With the ability to add some fat sacs, your kids will have a long time before they are complaining about wanting a larger wake.

Edit - I would weigh the direct drive in that a) it is cheaper than a v-drive because there is not the v-drive unit b)the space is chopped up more than a v-drive c) it will have the best waterskiiing wake (but you need to be going 25 MPH+ really to make much of a difference there)

Edited by MalibuTime

Share this post


Link to post
Chia

Isn't the Sunsetter a direct dirve as opposed to a v-drive? Considering my family will more than likely want to wakeborad (or at least try it) as well as ski, is the Sunsetter a good wakeboarding boat?

the sunsetter vlx is a v drive. With the diamond hull you get a decent ski wake. the vlx comes with the wedge for boarding and surfing.

Share this post


Link to post
Malibudude

The Sunsetter moniker was a previous model then came variations of it from DD to VD's. The Sunsetter LXI did offer the MLS w/ a 500lbs sac in the ski locker up front. Combine that with the wedge and it produces a solid imtermediate level wake that is a great place to start wakeboarding. It also has a very nice slalom wake. It's certainly a killer crossover boat and he had in your price range easily. The rear trunk is a great asset (fits slalomskis) to the SLXI to store all your gear along w/ a tower and racks. The only other boat that rivals the crossover is the VTX on a diamond hull, but the cost is much much higher.

Share this post


Link to post
RanchDweller

Hey Neil310-

Fellow Colorado boater here! I am in the same situation as you. I have a wife that is an excellent skier. I want to wakeboard, and our kids are learning water sports. In a VDrive, your wake will always be large. Any skier will appreciate the wake behind a direct drive (none). The Malibu I bought is the Malibu Sportster Direct Drive with the wedge & wake tower. With the wedge up, no wake. Excellent for skiing and kids. Put the wedge down and it is equivalent to adding 1,000 pounds of ballast and really builds the wake up. For us, it is the best of both worlds. Yes, it is a smaller boat with the motor mounted in the middle. However, with our two 7 year old kids and a few neighbors, we get by just fine. We have lake trips planned every weekend starting May 1st. Let me know if you are out and about and you can check out the setup.

Good Luck!

Edited by RanchDweller

Share this post


Link to post
Chia

here is the biggest difference between the 2001 SS VLX and 2001 SS LXI:

interior roominess.

95465322_6thumb_550x410.jpg

96561251_7thumb_550x410.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Neil310

here is the biggest difference between the 2001 SS VLX and 2001 SS LXI:

interior roominess.

95465322_6thumb_550x410.jpg

96561251_7thumb_550x410.jpg

from this close up you can really see why a V-Drive offers more room. How's maintenance on older (2000 - 2005) Malibu boats? Once I narrow my search even further and pick a boat is there a year I should stay away from?

Share this post


Link to post
stroker-ace

Don't forget the Response. It is good bang for the buck in that price range. I definitely don't like putting more than 5 people on mine though (including myself), due to the direct drive.

Edited by stroker-ace

Share this post


Link to post
Chia

from this close up you can really see why a V-Drive offers more room. How's maintenance on older (2000 - 2005) Malibu boats? Once I narrow my search even further and pick a boat is there a year I should stay away from?

not really. you can see the different specs on the boats in the Resourses/DIY section of this site. here is the direct link:

http://www.themalibucrew.com/forums/index.php?/page/specifications/specs_main

Share this post


Link to post
RanchDweller

You guys are absolutely right about the interior space of the two designs. The Vdrive can get a ton of people in it. The direct drive will save you a lot of coin. The Vdrive will also handle choppy water better. If it is about getting a newer boat and saving some money, direct drive. If it is about interior space and a little older boat and still spending more money, VDrive.

Share this post


Link to post
Chia

from this close up you can really see why a V-Drive offers more room. How's maintenance on older (2000 - 2005) Malibu boats? Once I narrow my search even further and pick a boat is there a year I should stay away from?

Plus, when you are skiing you cannot have anyone in the rear seat, which limits your seating options even more.

Share this post


Link to post
Wet Water WI

What about finding a couple year old Sunsetter XTI? Has the direct drive feel with the room for people to sit. Great family boat with a good ski and/or wakeboard wake (at dif speeds).

Share this post


Link to post
REW

I have an 04 DD wakesetter that I love, it has a good ski wake when you get above 25 or so and with the center ballest and wedge there is a nice wake for boarding. It does get a little croweded, especially with 8 teenage girls pluse me and the wife. (all towing from the tower that day). The difference will be what you want. if you have the time go to a dealership and sit in both, take the kids and wife with you have the sales person join you, sit in both boats. get it crowded if you can to see if it is a big deal to you. If it will be just you and the family for a while with the occasional friend then the DD will save you arond 5 to 10K for the equilivent boat. Also dont for get to look at the IRide.

Share this post


Link to post
Neil310

Hey welcome to the crew! Boating is great family time and although my first 2 boats were and outboard and an I/O I am sold on the safety of inboards and the prop being tucked under the boat.

Since this is your first, there is a lot to consider so you don't make an expensive mistake.

1) What it the towing capacity of your tow vehicle? You want to have significant excess capacity, especially being in Colorado. By the time you add fuel, toys etc. the weight really adds up, so make sure you are not going to get into a heavy boat unless you have a strong tow rig.

2) Tandem or single axle. There are many threads here on that topic. Main thing is that your bearings are checked and you have good tires and a spare.

3) Gear list, depending on what you get with your boat, there is a lot of stuff you need to be legal, safe and able to ensure you have a full weekend of boating. There is a gear list in the resources section.

4) In terms of specific models, a V-drive is going to feel a lot more spacious than a direct drive. Keep in mind that towing little kids you are only going to be going 12-15 MPH, so even a direct drive is going to have a wake that seems huge, and the until they build up confidence to cross outside the wake they will be behind the boat.

5) I suggest staying 21' or shorter since this is your first boat. Docking,launching, retrieving all get more difficult as the size increases since you are dealing with more length and weight, and a boat that will catch more wind.

6) You could easily spend a couple grand on gear, plus sales tax, so don't forget to figure that in.

Good luck!

Edit- you will probably want a towing cover (Evolution Covers) and a bimini, since you will likely need to tow a bit to get to good lakes, and a bimini top is a life saver with kids so you can stay on the water all day.

Check out this page, lower right. New boat purchase info:

http://www.themalibucrew.com/forums/index.php?app=ccs

Thanks for the great advise...it looks like I found a boat the Sunsetter VLX 2001. It looks to be in good shape, well taken care of and low hours. Any pros or cons with that particular year/model?

Share this post


Link to post
NorCaliBu

Try to get on your ski behind it before you settle on a V-Drive. Make sure that you will be happy with the wake. I have skied behind V-Drives with the diamond (slalom) hull and I will never own one. :no: The interior room is nice but not nice enough (to me) to put up with the wake of a V-Drive. Some people are perfectly happy with it. It just depends on how serious a slalom skier you are.

Share this post


Link to post
JeffS

I don't know much, but I have a lot opinions. In my opinion, the only people who should have a DD are the people who need a DD. And those are the folks who ski.

I've never been on a Vdrive that has a good table all the way from 50' to 75' behind the boat and from 25mph to 32mph. It's a compromise for skiers to ski behind a wakeboard Vdrive. No matter what brand. It's just the way it is.

Same deal, other side, I can create an o.k. wake for a rider with my direct drive, but it's just o.k. No one who is a serious rider is going to have any fun behind my boat, no matter what I do with ballast.

So with inboard propulsion, you really have to decide what's most important. Usually it's to have a really good wake for riders, an acceptable wake for skiers and the room of a VDrive. Which is why I write that my opinion is - unless you are a diehard skier, and NEED a Direct Drive, you probably will be happier with a V. And that is also why I think V Drives are more expensive - supply and demand.

Cheers.

Share this post


Link to post
Chia
Thanks for the great advise...it looks like I found a boat the Sunsetter VLX 2001. It looks to be in good shape, well taken care of and low hours. Any pros or cons with that particular year/model?

you are going to love that boat. i sure did mine.

Share this post


Link to post

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...