Colorado Fisherman Forum banner

Would you buy a sterndrive fishing boat?

  • Yes, if it was the right boat

    Votes: 5 20.8%
  • No, only would be interested in an outboard

    Votes: 15 62.5%
  • Maybe

    Votes: 2 8.3%
  • I'm not interested in any fishing boat.

    Votes: 2 8.3%

  • Total voters
    24
1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,710 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Just trying to get an idea of the market. I know there are some sterndrive fishing boats out there, but I don't see them too often.

So, if you were in the market for a boat, would you consider a sterndrive if someone showed you how to easily winterize it? And I mean a real fishing boat, not something you could use for fishing.

Link for reference to what type of boat I am talking about.

https://classifieds.ksl.com/listing/55735037
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
936 Posts
I like outboards because they are easy to maintain and access. If something goes wrong, all you have to do is pop off the hood and see what's up (I realize its not always that easy, but you get the point). Access is much more difficult for a stern drive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
144 Posts
I have not been in an I/O since I was a youngman I grew up fishing/skiing with one and they were more trouble free than an outboard at the time (late 70's). Now days OB engines are relatively trouble free.

The engine compartment takes up more room in your boat, which might mean going to the next size larger. Takes more water to float your boat also.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,176 Posts
I had a stern drive for years. I wouldn't recommend owning one in Colorado if you fish early and late into the season. Having to drain the boat at the lake is a pain in the butt before driving home early or late in the season.

As far as access. It was easy on my boat. Two latches and lift the cowl. Maintenance was simple plugs, points, condenser. Just a little Chevy motor with plenty of room to work. Changing the oil without a simple retrofit was a pain in the butt. But, I added a fitting to the drain plug with a hose ..allowing the oil to be drained through the transom plug rather than having to pump it out.

It was also nice knowing that any part you needed for the motor was easily found at any auto parts store. Yes, I had to change points at the lake a couple of times when one of my drivers would forget and leave the key turned to the on position frying the points. But nothing a screwdriver and a matchbook wouldn't fix. After the first time, I carried an extra set in the boat.

It was nice not having a motor in the way in the back of the boat when fishing and skiing.

Would I own one again. Not in Colorado.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,716 Posts
Used to see a Lund Baron often at Pueblo. If you lived near the water and had a heated garage it might work out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,710 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
What are the advantages, if any?
Good question. The answer was easier a few years back when most outboards were smaller horsepower and 2 strokes. It wasn't that long ago that 300 HP was the most you could get in an outboard, and anything over about 115 HP was very expensive. Then the advantage was clearly with a sterndrive, where the lowest HP available was an 3.0 I4 with 130 HP, and you could get to 300 pretty easily (and relatively cheaply) with a 5.7 MAG.

Some things don't change as much. The way I see it, sterndrives are quieter than an outboard. Both at idle, and especially when they are running down the lake. They have longer strokes and a heavier fly wheel that allow them to develop more torque than an outboard. They run at a lower RPM. Parts may be easier to find and are less expensive. Service may be easier - you could have a car mechanic work on it should you need to. All sterndrives are 4 stroke - no messing with pre-mix or worrying about the oil injection pump going out, quiet, much less exhaust fumes.

Less important to fisherman, another advantage to a sterndrive is that if you are spending time in the water, the outdrive/motor is a bit less intrusive. Especially true for a boat with a swim platform on it.

To me, the biggest advantage to a outboard, especially true with fisherman who use the boat 3 (or 4) seasons, is that there is really nothing to do to winterize. Put it vertical, let the water drain out, and you are done.

I had a 350 Merc in a boat, and to winterize it, you had to pull 4 drain plugs on the engine. I could do it in less than 2 minutes, but it was an extra step. I have a friend with a 4.3, and he has told me there is one plug and some sort of a pump built in to quickly pump the water.

I'm not trying to convince anyone one way or another. Just trying hear other peoples opinions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,591 Posts
New 4stroke outboards are so quiet you can hardly hear them idling, they just keep getting better, Suzuki 350 has dual props. Clean boat but not many good reasons to go sterndrive on a fishing boat, let alone one from the 80's.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,611 Posts
I've never had one.
A small block, 4 or 6 cylinder hooked to an out drive so cheaper to repair.
The out drives need seals and rebuilds.

The weight would help with rough water but mean more to tow especially a small block V8.

Ideal set up for pulling skiers.
The torque and low RPM's would be great.

:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,710 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
New 4stroke outboards are so quiet you can hardly hear them idling, they just keep getting better, Suzuki 350 has dual props. Clean boat but not many good reasons to go sterndrive on a fishing boat, let alone one from the 80's.


The newer big 4 stroke outboards have taken a lot of the arguments away. They are even close in cost now. Looks like that 350 Suzuki is about $22k vs a MerCruiser 6.2 and Bravo 1 outdrive at $19500.

Torque and RPM is still different. But more than adequate with the big Zuke.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21 Posts
Most of the comments have been about the engine in the boat and have said little about the outdrive. Having been involved with a commercial fishing fleet I have learned that outdrive parts are difficult to find, especially older models. I'd stay away from IOs just for that reason. An advantage of an outboard is that if it goes bad you can easily dump it and attach a new one. With an IO you have to find an outdrive that is compatible with the onboard engine, possibly redesign the transom, if possible. An added expense not need with outboards.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,710 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Most of the comments have been about the engine in the boat and have said little about the outdrive. Having been involved with a commercial fishing fleet I have learned that outdrive parts are difficult to find, especially older models. I'd stay away from IOs just for that reason. An advantage of an outboard is that if it goes bad you can easily dump it and attach a new one. With an IO you have to find an outdrive that is compatible with the onboard engine, possibly redesign the transom, if possible. An added expense not need with outboards.


Hmm. What outdrive were you looking for? Not a MerCruiser. And probably not a Volvo. Parts for both of those are readily available.

Either way, I think I’ve closed the door on my intrigue with a sterndrive fishing boat. Unless it is a great deal, the market is just too small.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21 Posts
Mercruiser Drive 3s. Used on houseboats and barges primarily. Near impossible to find. We had 26 boats in the fleet and lost a lot of time searching for replacement parts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,710 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Mercruiser Drive 3s. Used on houseboats and barges primarily. Near impossible to find. We had 26 boats in the fleet and lost a lot of time searching for replacement parts.
Mercruiser Drive 3? Never heard of them. Mercruiser are pre-Alpha (old boats), Alpha and Bravo.

Alpha One is the standard, almost certainly on the majority of sterndrive boats. Good for up to around 300 HP.

Bravo One is for higher output engines. A little more robust, doesn't use the same cone that causes the grinding when shifting that you hear in the Alpha.

Bravo Two is for cruisers and houseboats. Higher HP, more severe use. My guess is that was what was on your fleet.

Bravo Three is their dual counter rotating prop design. Gives a better hole shot and maneuverability at low speeds (especially around docks).

On my old sterndrive (Bravo3), I lost the upper at the beginning of the 2nd season because it wasn't properly installed. My dealer had a new unit over nighted to me, and didn't miss a day on the water.

On my last houseboat at Powell, we had a Alpha drive go out. Found tons of options, went aftermarket, manufactured by SEI. It was delivered in three days.

Spend two minutes on Google and you can find any of the above outdrives, in stock.

If you want, you can have your old employer contact me if he has trouble with Mercruiser parts. I'll find him for them, for a small fee. ;D

There are reasons to not buy a sterndrive. In my experience, parts availability isn't one of them.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top