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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys I am looking into buying a small 10ft-14ft alluminum boat with a motor off of ebay. Are theese boats safe? I have heard some of you say that they take on water. And during stors people cant make it back to shore. Is this true? I plan on fishing spinney, pueblo and some other big lakes and I cant imagine not being able to get back in time. I remember last time I was in a boat and it kept going left and right while we where sitting there and I thought it was gonna take on water. Is it normal for thees boats to do that? Whats the youngest age for the operator of the boat to be?

Thank you very much
 

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well if you get a deep v hulled boat it will be ok and you can use a gas motor in the bigg lakes but i think that you have to be 18 to own a boat and 16 to operate and you must have an adult present
 
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You can pick up a 12-14 foot aluminum boat from craigslist.com with motor for between $500 and $1,500. As far as safety - I'm convinced that is up to the operator and his/her experience.

When I was a kid, My dad had a 12' Valco. We went everywhere and never had a problem. He took one of the safety courses from the Coast Guard Auxiliary. My mom and step-dad had a 24' foot boat - we had some close calls.

With relation to age, I believe minimum age is 13 with a boater's safety course.
 
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Oh yeah - Jay_in_Parker may have a boat for sale - looks like a great deal. You may want to chat with him before you go to eBay.
 
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I wouldn't buy a boat without a test "drive". A 10-14' boat CAN be safe, but it all depends on the boat and the operator and respect for wind and weather.

I think Colorado law is still that anyone operating a motorboat on Colorado waters must be at least 16 years old. But teens 14 and 15 years old can operate a motorboat if they first complete a state approved boating safety course.
 

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The operator makes a boat safe. I had a 14ft deep v that i would take out on the ocean in 4-6 foot seas. If you know how to handle it right its no problem. I say that a gas motor is a great idea on the big lakes especially because you dont have to worry about the battery dieing on you. If you havent had a boat before i would recommed taking the coast guard class with your youngster to learn the "rules of the road".

Good luck in your hunt
-d-
 

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But teens 14 and 15 years old can operate a motorboat if they first complete a state approved boating safety course
Should everyone take a course? I own a boat and have for about 4 years I never took one. Also my kids were drving the boat this weekend at chatfield and they are 6 & 9. wierd but when my 9year old was driving we drove right by 2 ranger boats they smiled we waved and on we went.
 

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i think any size boat is fine if you are safe. in colorado storms come up fast and they go away just as fast. with a smaller boat you will probably have a smaller engine. dont underestimate how long it will take you to get across a big lake. if i start to see an ugly cloud or the wind picks up i will start fishing close to the dock. if the waves come up i get off the water. dont be afraid to put on your life jacket either. i have seen people trying to get off the water in bad storms waiting in line for the boat ramp even taking on water and they are not wearing a life jacket. you can always buy another boat if you stay alive. when starting out be overly paranoid and work up to your comfort level. being too bold will sink your boat. in a boat that size if you ride the waves right you can take on just about all colorado can throw at you. one good wave over the side though and your swimming.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
How much does a aluminum boat with gas engine weight? Would I have to unload it at the boat ramp? The only thing I am worried about is it takig on water or I cant get back quick enough to the boat ramp.
 

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Khabibulin,
dave110man is right ,you definately have to use common sense. dont wait for the storm to arrive while in the middle of the lake,head for a cove or the ramp. Somewhere that either you wont catch too much wind and waves or somewhere you can actually pull your boat out of the water.
I have an older model 14 ft Velco and I can handle it by myself with the aid of wheels on the stern. As for being alone with a trailer it's a pice of cake. about a 2-5 minute process puttin in or taking out!
 

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As to safety, I'll share my experience in my 12' aluminum v-hull.  I had promised my wife a ride in my boat a couple of weeks ago, so I took her out with me for a bit.  It was cloudy, but calm.  We were caught in the middle of Union Reservoir when high winds started abruptly.  Whitecaps were forming, as well as rolling waves.  The rollers would lift us about 1'-2' before dropping us into a trough.  I turned the boat into the wind so we would not get side-swiped and overturn.  The waves never breached the bow, but we would get sprayed every so often.  I had not brought my gas motor, as Union is wakeless & I usually get along just fine with my trolling motor.  It took what seemed like forever to get back to shore.

I hope I'm not caught out there like that again, but next time I'll make sure I don't make the mistake of leaving without my gas motor.  The extra power would have definitely shortened that ride.
 
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