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Old     (Castlex)      Join Date: May 2014       05-26-2014, 10:14 PM Reply   
Apologies if this post is not in the correct section. I am a complete newbie when it comes to this sport/hobby but after going out with friends over the years we have decided that it is something that we would like to try to get into. That being said we are looking at buying used in the 15-25k range (wife would prefer the 15-20 range) and I am having some problems finding what would appear to be solid choices. What boats are a good starting point for a family looking to get into all aspects from boarding to surfing if possible? I appreciate everyone's thoughts and input in advance.

Last edited by Castlex; 05-26-2014 at 10:15 PM. Reason: Typo
Old     (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-27-2014, 12:37 AM Reply   
You are definitely going to want an inboard, a v-drive preferred. You can get away with a direct drive, but they are mainly designed for skiing and produce smaller wakes to begin with and generally don't have as much freeboard or storage to add weight to make those bigger wakes. It can be done, but you generally have sacks on the floor and are running real close to taking water over the side while surfing.

Preferred features of a wakeboat that make a difference:
Perfect Pass
Ballast or storage to add it in

Other goodies:
Sound system (most people add their own anyway even if a boat has it)
hot shower

In your budget here are some boats I would look at in your area to get going on it.

1991 Nautique V-drive $13,500

This one comes under your budget and has some hard ballast (lead) perfect pass, a tower, sound system, and a big engine which is preferred when you slam a boat and start surfing. It does have higher hours, but not for the year it is. Expect a little more maintenance on it than with a newer boat though
It looks like the trailer has been redone as well as the interior and has good gel
You will have a lower initial cost and it will get you on the water playing

Overall this would be a good boat to start out with and keep you having fun for several years. You may run into some bigger maintenance down the road, but with the price you save on it, you could afford to maintain it. The only carb engine in this list.

1994 Mastercraft Maristar $14,000

Fuel injected engine, more reliable, fuel efficient, and better performing when listed. Has less hours than the Nautique above.
It does not have perfect pass ($1200 to add on) or ballast. The Maristars also do not have tracking fins on the bottom to help keep the boat tracking straight while pulling a rider when they cut in and out. Most wake boats have these, but the Maristar was made more as a casual family boat than a serious wakeboat.
It does have room in the rear lockers to add ballast.

1995 Mastercraft 225 VRS $16,900

Smilar to the Maristar above. Not a lot of info on this listing on features, hours, etc.

1999 Mastercraft Maristar 205 VRS $18,000

Another Maristar, this one has built in ballast and they include a 800lb sack as well, still no perfect pass, but has a good sound system. I can't verify this, but they list it as the same hull as the Xstar, which puts out a good wake

2002 Mastercraft 205V $19,500

Another 205, no ballst, perfect pass, etc. Low hours (sub 300) has some stress cracks in the gel coat, and the owner says he got it in trade and has never had it out. Might be worth looking at, might also be sketchy.

2001 Centurion Elite V-Drive Air Warrior $19,500

Again, not a ton of info, has around 450 hours though. Centurions are known to make pretty nice surf wakes. This is the first of 3 in your area.

2001 Centurion Elite V-Drive Air Warrior $19,500

A different Air Warrior, built in ballast, removable carpet is a nice feature, has a bimini and cover, decent sound system. 330ish hours.

2002 Centurion Avalanche Escalade $19,900

The most expensive boat on the list, Avalanches put out great wakes for wakeboard and surfing. This one has a wakthrough to the Transom on the starboard side which may or may not be a nice feature for you.
1800lbs of built in ballast, good sound system, normal wear and tear on the boat, comes with cover

Really any of these will work for you in your budget. You just have to look at and decide where your priorities are as far as what you want and what you want to spend now, and in the long run.
Old     (Castlex)      Join Date: May 2014       05-27-2014, 8:15 AM Reply   
Thanks for the detailed reply Surf Addict.

Had a friend contact me earlier this morning. He is thinking of parting with his boat so that they can upgrade. It is a 2003 Supreme Sky, direct drive, 400 hours, tower speakers, perfect pass...etc. I know that the boat is is pretty good condition minus some interior stitching that is in need of attention and he was talking about selling it for around 15k. Obviously not ideal with it not being a V-drive but does the price sound reasonable?

On a different note, is there a website that I can get information on a boat off of the HIN?
Old     (markj)      Join Date: Apr 2005       05-27-2014, 9:16 AM Reply   
That 91 Nautique is a sweet deal. I would definitely prefer a V-drive.
Old     (jbird)      Join Date: Jun 2011       05-27-2014, 9:27 AM Reply   
The Sky Supreme would be a nice boat for you, in this area check out some Sanger's too! I had a 98 Shaun Murray Sky Supreme that was a good boat, very versatile, but we wweren't surfing back then!
Old     (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-27-2014, 12:25 PM Reply   
For the money and the hours, I would pass. As I posted above, there are v-drive boats around that price range, it is newer, but that's what you're paying for, the new factor. There is another thread about a guy asking about boats and considering a cheaper direct drive here,

My favorite quotes from that thread are:

"Take it from the guys on here and do it right the first time. Go v-drive and be done. If you buy that Moomba you are going to say to yourself everyday after the first 2 weeks of use and ownership, "man I shoulda bought that v-drive".


"I own an 07 Mobius DD, every time I go out I wish I had a V-Drive. Every. Damn. Time."

I regularly surf a direct drive. It can be done, but forget about having space on the floor or rear seats. It's possible, but it is so much easier and more convenient in a v-drive. If a direct drive is all you can afford, then go ahead, it will get you on the water doing what you want. If you can afford a v-drive, even if it's a few grand more, do it, you will be happy you did.

Markj, that Nautique is a pretty sweet deal being a v-drive that early with all those options on it too. I would be all over that. It also has the older prop rotation that will favor a regular wake over the newer ones favoring goofy wakes.
Old     (sidekicknicholas)      Join Date: Mar 2007       05-27-2014, 12:40 PM Reply   
Not sure where you're located, but my bother will be selling my old Supersport Nautique this summer.... the boat is in Central Wisconsin.

1995 Super Sport (same hull as Super Air)
~650 hours
Tower, Ballast, dual-axle trailer, tower speakers / racks / mirror / etc
New interior, etc etc

I believe he is going to be asking ~$16,000 +/-

Old     (Castlex)      Join Date: May 2014       05-27-2014, 5:03 PM Reply   
I appreciate the thought Nick but Wisconsin is definitely further than I would want to drive.

Jay when you said Sanger was this along the lines that you were thinking? or something else?

SurfAddict - Surfing is something that seems more my speed but at the end of the day this is about the good of the group. My kids are still young (7 and 9) and we have a learning curve. I would prefer the V-drive but if the right price/boat that is DD comes along we may go that route. Other than it being a DD is the Supreme that I mentioned a good boat?
Old     (Talonsorensen)      Join Date: Apr 2012 Location: Gig harbor Washington       05-27-2014, 7:57 PM Reply I would see if this person would come down in price this boat would be perfect!
Old     (Castlex)      Join Date: May 2014       05-27-2014, 8:18 PM Reply   
Maybe this is my lack of experience showing but I just called on that Malibu and it has 1100 hours which seems high in comparison to the price. Truth be told I don't know what is considered to be an average amount vs high amount of hours. When you stated that if the owner would come down in price how much would you be thinking.
Old     (denystaucd)      Join Date: Feb 2003       05-27-2014, 8:45 PM Reply   
Everyone's giving great advice, especial 'Surf'. You can surf with a DD, but with kids on-board I wouldn't. DD's ride low in the water and surfing puts the boat in a lean with ballast. V-drives ride much higher, thus likely safer and less prone to take waves over the side. V-drives also tend to handle more ballast easier. I went from a DD to a V-drive and have never regretted it.

Few other thoughts;
- something to consider early 2000's boats vinyl seems to tear and fade easier then mid-2000's vinyl, so if ratty vinyl is going to bug you??
-The Malibu Talon posted above is nice, as I think the wedge will add the versatility you want. Someone else could chime in.
-Consider who your local boat dealers are for service parts if your a DIY guy.
-Look closely at the trailer tire's for cracking that could add quick $500 expense

Old     (denystaucd)      Join Date: Feb 2003       05-27-2014, 8:50 PM Reply   
Quickly; I average 70-90 hrs a year riding most weekends with a few off for other things. 1100 is a mid to high number. I have 711 hr on my current 2006 Xstar and had 640 hr on my previous x-7 (prostar 190 hull) with no motor issues. I've changed the spark plugs on both and really didn't need too. The newer motors are really great overall compared to the pre-1999'ish equipment.

Old     (markj)      Join Date: Apr 2005       05-27-2014, 9:54 PM Reply   
I still say that 1991 Nautique is a steal. I used to own one of those and they're bullet proof. I sold mine comparably equipped without a new interior that he has for $18,500 back in Oct. 2004. No one realizes what a sleeper that boat is. Plus he has perfect pass and good colors..... Winner by a long shot.
Old     (Talonsorensen)      Join Date: Apr 2012 Location: Gig harbor Washington       05-27-2014, 10:41 PM Reply   
I have a lot of experience with malibus and have friends that have 2600 hours on there's and still running strong. 1100 is alittle high but if it's taken care of it can last a lot longer. In consideration to hours and year and the way the boat looks if you can get 22,000 or some where close that being said the same year boat with less hours usually are around 40, 000. But make sure it checks out at a dealer of your choice an you take it for a test drive. I think malibu is one of the most versatile boats.
Old     (Talonsorensen)      Join Date: Apr 2012 Location: Gig harbor Washington       05-27-2014, 11:03 PM Reply 2003 malibu vlx supra Ssv also a nice boat!
Old     (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-28-2014, 9:43 AM Reply   
Do you have more info about that Supreme? When they were making those, they were making those as wakeboats that could be used for occasional skiing. I believe they used the same hull as the v-drive versions as well, so it should have similar wake and freeboard, I could be wrong though. Also does it have the optional ballast system?
I see it does have two lockers in the rear, I'm not sure of their construction, but you could potentially fit sacks in there. If it does have the 600lbs of optional ballast and the lockers are able to support sacks, this might not be a bad option for you.
I know it's also nice to get a friend's boat you know and give money to them instead of a stranger. There is also all the little support things from them along the line, like how things were done. Basically a lot of free knowledge that can help along the way.

Really as far as direct drives go, that is a pretty good option. With the same hull and freeboard, you can sack it, if it does have the 600lb tank, that's great, if not there should be a space you can hide and plumb sacks where it would have gone, and you can throw some in the locker. With all that, you could still hide quite a bit of weight and possibly not have sacks on the floor everywhere and not worry about getting water over the side.
The only real drawback then of the direct drive would be seating area, normally a v-drive will have a more open seating arrangement.

That being said, if you're looking at 15k for a direct drive supreme or 13.5k for a comparable v-drive nautique. Even though it is older, I would go for that Nautique even though it does have higher hours, it is very low for that year.

A lot of good options in this thread though.
Old     (Castlex)      Join Date: May 2014       05-28-2014, 9:02 PM Reply   
I don't have a ton of information as of yet, is there some specifics? I do however know that it does have the optional ballast system. I was trying to locate information by the hull id number but I have not be able to determine much. Is there something to be determined by this number or am I spinning my wheels?

Currently I have gone and checked out several boats without much luck. Many of them appear to have been cared for poorly in a visual sense and likely mechanically as well. I have no doubt that it is a process but I am leaning more and more towards the Supreme. I am beginning to understand the disadvantages of a direct drive but given my price point I feel like I am limited. Either way I believe that we will be happy to get into the hobby.
Old     (markj)      Join Date: Apr 2005       05-28-2014, 11:09 PM Reply   
Once again, that Nautique is a crazy sweet deal given the condition of it. I wouldn't be surprised if its already gone. Having owned that same year/make/model, I'd be all over that if I was in the market. Especially at that price. You cant lose. Good luck in your search.
Old     (Castlex)      Join Date: May 2014       05-29-2014, 10:15 AM Reply   
I don't know Markj...I would have a hard time justifying a 23 year old boat. Based on your insistence that it is a great boat it either is or it belongs to you and you really want to sell it.

At this point it boils down to budget and I will keep trying to get what I can at the best price point.
Old     (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       05-29-2014, 2:21 PM Reply   
You will be happy with the Supreme. As I said, from looking more into it, it has the same hull as the V-Drive version. For this year range they actually made the V-Drive ones and then because they had demand for Ski boats, made a direct drive version from the same hull. Other than the actual drive train (and weight shift from it) and the interior change that comes with it, the Supreme is the same as the V-Drive version and should still make a good wake. It's good it has the built in ballast as well.
You also know the seller and know what has or hasn't been done on it. The personal touch and resource of info and history on it make it a little sweeter deal.

That Nautique though....
Old     (markj)      Join Date: Apr 2005       05-30-2014, 1:53 AM Reply   
Originally Posted by Castlex View Post
I don't know Markj...I would have a hard time justifying a 23 year old boat. Based on your insistence that it is a great boat it either is or it belongs to you and you really want to sell it.

At this point it boils down to budget and I will keep trying to get what I can at the best price point.
Ha! LOL... Well, I did post my favor for the Nauti three times so maybe I sounded a little overbearing. Sorry about that but, it IS a great boat. I just kinda miss my old Barefoot Nautique and many times wish I still owned it. It's usually once a month when I have to make the payment on the newer boat. BTW, isn't it YOU who is mentioning things like price point and value? 95% of the people on this forum dont really know anything about that boat or how much of a sleeper it is because those boats (equipped like the one mentioned) are relatively rare. Age is just a number right? Actually condition trumps just about everything (within reason).

Like I said before, I sold mine almost ten years ago back in Oct. 2004 so that one ain't mine. That one shown has way better colors than mine had too. Mine was a baby blue/charcoal grey color. I also wanted to stress to you how valuable a V-drive is over a DD as well and you're never gonna find a V-drive Nautique, with new upholstry, in that condition, with maintanace records since new for that little $. Just my .02 Maybe you already know what you're getting so I'll just shut up now. Just tryin to help. Again, good luck. Let us know what you get.
Old     (cwb4me)      Join Date: Apr 2010       05-30-2014, 5:12 AM Reply   
I had a 1992 Nautique Excel and it was a great boat. I sold it back in 2007 . It had 585 hours on it and was trouble free. I only had to replace the packing once and rebuild the carb once in fifteen years. PCM builds a great motor.
Old     (Castlex)      Join Date: May 2014       05-30-2014, 8:14 AM Reply   
Your not being overbearing, I was just giving you a hard time. What I was saying is that not having the knowledge of some of this limits my ability to justify the age of the boat to the price. I really want a V-Drive but more than anything with us knowing the person selling the Supreme has really been the driving force behind my wife pushing to purchase that one. Like I said I really want to be able to surf (or pretend that I am) and I understand how the DD will limit/eliminate that. Alot will depend on if this person follows through this weekend and if not I will go back to the drawing board and see what I can find. Either way I will just be happy to be able to get out on the water, learn a new sport, and have some fun with the family.
Old     (jeff_mn)      Join Date: Jul 2009       05-30-2014, 8:29 AM Reply   
Corey - just jumping in here from experience.

Almost everyone on this forum started where you are.. Looking at boats, justifying costs, years, hours, etc.

And almost everyone on the forum who has done what you are doing says the exact same thing -- just buy a v-drive. Spend the extra money or the extra time looking or sacrifice some on the hours/year to get a v-drive.

And guess what? they are right. If you don't -- you will just be doing this twice. We've ALL done it. Everyone starts with a DD, spends a couple Saturdays in their buddies v-drive and ends up selling and purchasing again. Just do it right the first time. Trust me and everyone else on this. Everytime oyu make that extra $75/month payment on your nice v-drive over a d-drive, you'll be happy. thta's a layup. These things are expensive - get the one you want, that will do the things you want it to do and be happy with your purchase. Don't learn the hard way like we all did.

I don't care what year, color and brand you buy. No one does. But we all want you to be happy and you and your wife wont until you own a v-drive if you are into boardsports.. Good luck!
Old     (Castlex)      Join Date: May 2014       05-31-2014, 9:57 AM Reply   
What do you guys think of this one?
Old     (BaadLS1)      Join Date: Dec 2013       06-01-2014, 7:35 AM Reply   
He needs to come down on price a little more. 18k seems more reasonable.
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       06-01-2014, 8:08 AM Reply   
Was this posted?
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       06-01-2014, 8:11 AM Reply   
This is listed a few grand above your high end but would be an out of the box, ready to go boat. Low hours, all the goodies, great hull for surfing and boarding, etc....
Old     (Castlex)      Join Date: May 2014       06-01-2014, 10:28 AM Reply   
I saw that one but truth be told I cant go above what I set as my max and I would hate to low ball and insult the guy. Although if it was dealer I would .
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       06-01-2014, 11:50 AM Reply   
The V215 is listed here on wakeworld. Maybe PM the guy. Just be honest. Say you don't want to insult him but if the max you can spend is 25k. Would he consider it? Worst he can do is say no.

OK, if you can deal with green I found your boat.
Old     (Castlex)      Join Date: May 2014       06-01-2014, 10:15 PM Reply   
I really dont know anything about the Calabria...Is it considered a decent boat? I mean besides the green...
Old     (soonerbilly)      Join Date: Jul 2013       06-02-2014, 6:31 AM Reply   
I have the orange version of that calabria. I really like it. The purevert ballast is so easy to use and its more than enough for newbies. Plus the interior room and storage is crazy for an older boat. Plenty of room in the lockers for ballast. Just get the batteries moved out of the rear locker and you're good to go. You should at least check it out in person, lots to like.
Old     (Castlex)      Join Date: May 2014       06-15-2014, 8:38 PM Reply   
I still have not had any luck with really finding anything as of yet. I attempted to get with several of the listings that you guys suggested with varied returned calls, misrepresented boats, and just poor follow through. The Supreme deal has not really panned out either, he has been reluctant in allowing me to have compression/leak down test done on the boat and has expressed to me how he bought the boat sight unseen and has had no problems. Needless to say his response in this regards has made me reluctant to proceed with that deal any further. All this negativity aside I did look at another prospective option with my wife this weekend and I would like some feedback. is the link for the boat. The interior of the boat appears to be in decent condition with some small discoloration in spots and a couple of rough areas. The exterior has some oxidation and what I imagine could be described as dock rash. Let me know what you guys think.
Old     (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       06-15-2014, 9:56 PM Reply   
Those MBs throw a pretty decent wake. With some buffing/wetsanding you can probably take care of the oxidation. The interior is a little different story if it's discolored. It may need to be cleaned really well as sometimes vinyl will get a little different hue in spots that are high wear if it's not cleaned well regularly. If it's not something that can be taken care of or lessened like that, it may be something you will either have to live with or get reupholstered, just depending on how bad it is.
Old     (shawndoggy)      Join Date: Nov 2009       06-16-2014, 5:57 AM Reply   
no perfect pass, but otherwise a pretty good looking boat (aside from the very low hours):
Old     (racer808)      Join Date: Jan 2013       06-16-2014, 6:24 AM Reply   
If you could get that sanger Shawn put up down to 23k to 24k it would be hard to beat that deal.
Old     (Castlex)      Join Date: May 2014       06-21-2014, 8:41 PM Reply   
Does this the price on this one seem to be in the park?
Old     (boardman74)      Join Date: Jul 2012       06-21-2014, 9:30 PM Reply   
How do you have less than 30 hours on a 9+ year old boat?? Thats about 3 hours a year. That ones gonna have some lot rot.
Old     (Castlex)      Join Date: May 2014       06-21-2014, 9:35 PM Reply   
It just seems it maybe a bit of the to good to be true
Old     (phathom)      Join Date: Jun 2013       06-22-2014, 2:37 PM Reply   
It belonged to this little old lady that only drove it to church on Sundays


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