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New Guy wanting to buy first Malibu


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Hello all. New guy on the forum Looking for advice. Years ago I had a MC PS190 and used it twice because most of my friends were nursing hangovers back then. Now I am 44 with two kids and would like to get them into water sports. Not to mention some good family fun. I would like to free ski occasionally and actually would not mind getting into wake boarding etc. it will always be at least 4  in the boat but up to 8 plus occasionally. I am not a world class slalom skier but I want a nice wakeboard boat. The wife wants room. So we believe a 23 LSV May suit us. Looking at a 40-45k range which I believe puts us around 07-09. I have found an 07 that seems nice, has sounds, appears clean, 700hours with a 6.2 eng. they are asking about 46k. Does this seem reasonable? 23’ LSV’s around the same vintage with the 5.7’s seem 5k or so cheaper? Is that 6.2 worth it? Any and all advice and negotiating tips are appreciated.

thank you in  Advance

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23 LSV's in that era are great boats. The hull and tower changed in 2008, so you should see a price difference for '08-09 over the '07, but that should result in better resale for you down the road. If you're set on a 2007, the 2006 is the same boat too. There were quite a few 2006-2007s but less 2008s due to the recession. Hardly any 2009s were built, and the only difference was a new dash that year. 

Are you at an altitude where the bigger engine is needed? Generally the pre-surfgate boats don't need the larger engine unless you're at high altitudes, or adding 4000-5000 lbs of extra ballast with a suction gate type device for surfing. I'm not hearing either of those from your description above. I'm generally near sea level but spend a week each summer at 6000' and have had no issues at all in the last 3 summers with getting to speed with my '08 that has the 5.7L. Both wakeboarding and surfing listed with 2000 lbs on top of stock tanks, wedge and 7-8 in the boat.

I also think sellers asking $5K more for the larger engine in the years you're looking at is more hope than reality. I see quite a few debates about not recovering the engine upgrade cost in the newer boats, so would assume the price difference would be even narrower 10+ years out. Then again, the used boat market is very strong and it will be a sellers market again in the spring.

Pricing depends a lot on condition, and is also fairly regional, so you may be in the ballpark for your area but you would have to go up a bit more for a clean '08-09 in other areas.

  • Like 2
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Hey Guys - to piggie back off this thread rather than starting a new one, i am looking at virtually the same thing.  Family of four, getting back into boating after being out for a few years (due to having kids and all).  Picked up the tow vehicle a few months ago so I am getting closer...

We would be looking to surf and tow a tube for the most part.  I stopped in at the local dealership to get a feel of all the boats side by side which was helpful.  We can't afford new as we are in the virtually the same price point: 40 - 50k.  The one thing they mentioned numerous times was that the older boats you aren't able to surf as easily as the newer ones.  I can see this, but seems a bit exaggerated for beginners.... 

Can the 08 - 09 23 LSV surf okay with four ballast tanks & Power Wedge?  We are 100% new and don't need a $120k surf wake - just something to learn, have fun and grow into.

This forum has been a big help.  Thanks.

Edited by Five Cent Worth
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We have a 2009 23 LSV and we love it. Found it 3 years ago tucked away in a nice barn with only 15 hours on it. Today we have around 165 - so 75 hours or so each season. Da20Captain, I notice you did not mention surfing, but don't overlook this. We have really enjoyed surfing behind our boat. We have full MLS and Power Wedge. I made a suck gate (carry 2 on board in the event one breaks) and this fall I added 2 - 750s in the rear lockers. You can surf well behind the boat, albeit I'm confident nothing like the newer boats.  (Everything posted below is factory MLS with wedge down, no piggy back ballast with one video showing the suck gate in action)


We we have loved the space of our 23 LSV and frequently have our family of 5 joined by at least another family of 4-5 with plenty of space. Too bad we are not looking to upgrade (yet 😁) otherwise you may have another boat on your list! 


Keep looking and don't be afraid to travel to find what you're looking for.  This site is a great resource and just say the word and you will get a lot of links to boats people think fit you, your value point, and your needs!  You can't underestimate or undervalue a weekend on the lake with your family!  


Here are a few pics and videos of the surf.  







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someone needs to pick this up for 36k 


Remember to leave room in your budget for boards, vests, tubes, trailer tires and whatever other maintenance a used boat will need.  Until you upgrade to a 2013 model with surfgate I don't think there's a huge difference in model years.  Power wedge is an upgrade but other than that the newer boats mostly just have nicer interiors.  I plan on upgrading our 2004 with the wake makers wave control system (go surf assist) next black friday.  I'd rather have a 2004 boat w/ a surf system than a 2008 without. 

When I was used boat shopping the condition was the most important thing.  If you find a clean 2008 in your budget buy it,  I found a clean 2004 a couple years ago and my family loves it.  There are lots of neglected boats out there so be careful. Be sure and pay attention to the trailer if you're planning on towing.  If the boat lived on a lift most it's life the trailer may be very neglected.  We tow a ton so I make sure to stay on top of trailer maintenance. 

Here's a pretty good used boat buyers guide I borrowed from the Mastercraft guys, it helped me a few years ago.  https://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/attachment.php?attachmentid=43484&d=1231436792


Edit to answer some of the questions asked:


An 04+ LSV wake hull will surf just fine w/ the right equipment.  You'll need to upgrade the ballast and get some type of wake shaper or "suck gate"  The boat upgrades and a surf board or two will cost 1-2k 

The 5.7 with the right prop will push a ton of weight at sea level.  The hammerheads had some issues and only a little more power.  The 8.1 is nice especially if you're at altitude but they're harder to find and some of the parts are becoming harder to find.  I'd go for any engine of the 3 as long as it was well maintained.  w/ the hammerhead being my least favorite.  

Edited by Gavin17
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I'm not sure if the videos can be seen.  They are showing the hyperlinks and I am not able to test them to see if they work. If not, let me know and I will re-upload. 

Edited by NMMalibuFamily
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Make it a commitment to look at a bunch of same model boats during your search and take your time looking and committing to buying.  If you like th4 23lsv look at a bunch.  Definitely lake test and take the family with if the seller allows it.  


Used boats don't fly off the shelves regardless of the price and rushing "the best deal" so it doesnt get away always becomes a boat with more problems than you can see on the surface.

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The 2008-2012 23 LSV is still one of the best surf boats, and is a great wakeboard boat. They just don’t have some of the shiny new gadgets the new boats have and the deeper freeboard that is standard now.

You can get a gate device for $200-400 that many will swear by for surfing, or you can list the boat by weighting it to one side. Having done both, I prefer the listed wave and have my locker bags plumbed to do that with a flip of a switch.

There’s nothing “harder” about actually surfing either of these ways, and some really good surfers on here (not me) prefer listed over the surf gate waves. The extra effort is if you have to throw pumps over the side and manually fill the locker bags, and even that can be done fairly quickly. Switching sides is quick with a gate device but takes a few minutes longer if you run listed. Takes me 5 minutes to switch sides and gate folks will take a minute or two in swapping sides on the gate.

In full disclosure, I do have a 2018 23 LSV on order now. Spent too much time playing on friends’ 2016s and 2017s, and they are really nice boats, so I couldn’t resist the light when the 2018 was redesigned. 



Edited by NWBU
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Hey - thanks for the feedback and photos.  Great stuff.  Confirms a bit of what I was thinking that an 08-10 23 LSV would be good for us.  

Good info on the device for surfing (I get the feeling that it is called a few different names).  I wasn't aware that they could be so handy.  We are starting as beginners so what the boat has might be a good starting point.

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