Manitou 23 Encore SR VP: Relaxation Nation

Seating is definitely a high point on the Manitou 23 Encore.

Comfort and relaxation—they’re two things you expect from a pontoon boat. But when it comes to those two attributes not all pontoon boats make the … [Read more...]

Selecting a VHF Antenna for Your Boat

A fiberglass VHF antenna, good for boats with structures that can help support their length. Photo courtesy of Shakepeare.

Can you hear me now? Good. You probably already know that a VHF radio—either handheld or fixed unit—is a vital piece of safety equipment every boater … [Read more...]

Essential Onboard Tools for Boaters

A soft-sided toolbag won't damage gelcoat or woodwork, and side pockets make it easy to grab tools.

If you’ve ever tried to make a repair onboard before—at sea or at the dock—you know it’s sort of like working on the house: you get started only … [Read more...]

Used Boats: What’s It Going to Cost to Fix This Thing?

Big rehab jobs like this are often quoted on a project basis, but sometimes are done by labor hours and materials. You’ll almost always do better by asking for and going with a firm quote for both labor and materials. Photo by Gary Reich.

The last boat I bought was sitting on land with nearly a foot of water in the bilge, mold growing on the headliner, and mushrooms popping out of the cushions. And … [Read more...]

Pathfinder 2600 TRS: Civilized Bay Boat

Equally at home in shallow coastal waters or just offshore in the deep, the Pathfinder 2600 TRS packs a lot of comfort into a capable fishing package. All photos courtesy of Maverick Boat Company.

If you’re familiar with fishing boats, then you know that a bay boat is sort of a cross between a traditional center-console and a flats skiff design. … [Read more...]

Cobia 277 CC: Center-Console Superhero

The Cobia 277 CC has the goods to go the distance—both inshore and offshore. All photos courtesy of Maverick Boat Company.

When it comes to building top-notch fishing boats, Maverick Boat Company’s Cobia brand is among the best in the game. And the builder has been busy lately, … [Read more...]

Crest Caribbean 250 SLR2: A Slice of Paradise

The Crest Caribbean 250 SL2 packs a powerful one-two punch -- it's loaded with both comfort and performance. All photos courtesy of Crest.

The pontoon boat segment grew 68 percent in 2014, according to the National Marine Manufacturer’s Association. While other segments of the boating market … [Read more...]

Alumacraft Competitor 205 LE Sport: Multispecies Mania

There’s tons of cleverly concealed stowage underneath the Alumacraft Competitor 205 LE Sport’s plethora of deck hatches.

If you’ve ever been to the Great Lakes, or anywhere in the Midwest for that matter, then you’ve likely seen a multispecies fishing boat. These utilitarian … [Read more...]

Cobalt 232 WSS : Watersports Wonderland

The Cobalt 232 WSS is dedicated to watersports  from bow to stern. Photo courtesy of Cobalt.

While not every slice of the American boating pie is enjoying a full-blown renaissance, most watersports boatbuilders have been enjoying double-digit growth … [Read more...]

Outboard Engines: The 8- to 15-hp Sweet Spot

This 15-horse Suzuki outboard is a great powerplant for this youngster’s 14-foot crabbing skiff. Photo by Lenny Rudow

A Ted Williams 9.9-horsepower, two-stroke outboard was the engine that many of my childhood memories are wrapped around. Whether it was crabbing the Chesapeake … [Read more...]