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Old 02-04-2018, 06:44 PM
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Default Walkaround or center console

I am a west coast boy and I love the idea and comfort of walkarounds. Out here I notice that most boaters have center consoles. Is there a reason that center console is favored so much down here? Is a walk around platform not suited for fishing in Florida or off the Georgia Coast.
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Old 02-04-2018, 07:51 PM
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By walk around sim assuming you mean the boats with a cabin. Center consoles have a lot more fishing casting area than a walk around more bow storage. Also a lot of guys use trolling motors for flats fishing which wouldn’t be possible with a walk around. If all you do is offshore fishing or trolling the walk around would be fine. If more inshore fishing the center is the way to go. At least that’s my opinion.
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Old 02-04-2018, 08:21 PM
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Also going to be able to run a lot shallower with a cc.
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Old 02-04-2018, 08:26 PM
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I'm confused as well.. Is a walk around the same as a runabout?
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Old 02-04-2018, 08:34 PM
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a walkaround would have a cabin/ berth area with a little catwalk around the outside. Usually will have a grabrail to hold onto that is mounted to wall. Really made to provide a place to get out of weather.

Runabouts are usually pleasure boats with seating for riding and swimming, not fishing specific.

Center console is fishing specific, very minimal seating but a wide open deck to move quickly.
Some will have a head tucked in under the console if they are large enough.
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Old 02-04-2018, 09:00 PM
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being able to stay in the boat and make a run to the keys or islands would be nice. they are designed for staying out of the weather. I would think that it would be a plus in the Florida heat. I guess my question is are they practical for offshore fishing. Is being able to run around a boat chasing fish that necessary
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Old 02-04-2018, 09:24 PM
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Type of fishing? Bumping the bottom or trolling walk around is fine casting cc. If you are inshore fishing or fishing good weather days for offshore a center console with a ttop would be much better than a boat with a cuddy cabin. You mentioned Florida heat you want to be in that cabin with no air conditioning? I would prefer to stand in the rain or ride with a rain suit.
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Old 02-04-2018, 09:44 PM
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having room to run around is handy when you hook something as big as the boat and has teeth.

I've had a walk around, a wellcraft 22 ft weekender. It was miserably hot with virtually no ventilation. You would roast in the cabin in daytime, nightime, sunshine or dark.
Ultimately sold it as it was too small to store a generator or install a marine A/C neatly.

Only benefit I know I can honestly say it rode rough seas better than any other boat I've had. You'd almost need two trucks to tow it, but it rode big water great.
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Old 02-05-2018, 07:57 AM
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a lot of cc and walk arounds have the same hull just different cap so draft would be the same now if you have a cc then a lot of times they have T-tops witch take up casting space so to me what kind of fishing do you do then go from there
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Old 02-05-2018, 08:18 AM
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Just get one of each!!!!
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Old 02-05-2018, 06:28 PM
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99% of folks with walk around or small cuddy cabin boats don't use the cabins for anything other than storing stuff. And collecting mold. Unless you're getting a 28' or above the cabins are tiny. Maybe they'd be more practical up north but they're mostly not useable in Florida.
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Old 02-05-2018, 09:55 PM
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Walk around is going to usually be a smoother drier ride..but I personally would go with a center console..it runs shallower plus a lot more comfortable fishing from and if it's to choppy for a cc I'm going to the boat ramp or staying home for the day anyways
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Old 02-05-2018, 10:38 PM
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In my experience the walk-around rides smoother and drier but the cabin is totally useless 75% of the time except for growing mold and storage. I'd rather have a center console with more room to fish and a Bimini top for shade when needed, mainly to keep my wife shaded since she's fair skinned. My current boat has a walkthrough windshield and I find it to be more annoying than useful.
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Old 02-06-2018, 03:55 PM
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To me it's all about versatility based on the areas/species I target. CC bay boat w T-top works best...good compromise for lakes, inshore and near shore...trolling down riggers, deep dive planners and side planners. Lots of casting room, bait wells, rod storage, gear storage and comfortable versatile seating for friends and family. Trolling motor is a must...for me. I think a fishing boat with a cabin has more appeal if your trying to stay out of cold weather...not the stifling heat we have down here....just my opinion. It is important to get what You want and what you will be most comfortable with.

Let us know what you end up going with.
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Old 02-07-2018, 11:17 AM
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I grew up in the Pacific Northwest so I do have a bias based on those conditions. My primary reasoning was to have a toilet and storage for the kids. After doing some research I found that a lot of center consoles have those now. What is a good length for the average person for fishing deep in Florida, and maybe on a nice day making a run to the Bahamas? Would a 23-26 be adequate? I haven't spent much time on the Atlantic
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Old 02-07-2018, 12:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjorns4 View Post
I grew up in the Pacific Northwest so I do have a bias based on those conditions. My primary reasoning was to have a toilet and storage for the kids. After doing some research I found that a lot of center consoles have those now. What is a good length for the average person for fishing deep in Florida, and maybe on a nice day making a run to the Bahamas? Would a 23-26 be adequate? I haven't spent much time on the Atlantic
For what you stated, 26' would be a minimum, 32' would be my preference.
As finicky as the Atlantic can be your time on water will be limited in anything smaller than a 26.
Twin outboards for sure and I wouldn't attempt a Bahama crossing in any weather without a chase boat.
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Old 02-07-2018, 01:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjorns4 View Post
I grew up in the Pacific Northwest so I do have a bias based on those conditions. My primary reasoning was to have a toilet and storage for the kids. After doing some research I found that a lot of center consoles have those now. What is a good length for the average person for fishing deep in Florida, and maybe on a nice day making a run to the Bahamas? Would a 23-26 be adequate? I haven't spent much time on the Atlantic
I made the crossing in a boat about that size, never again. Young, Dumb and.. invincible. (yeah go with that!)
35ft or larger, or a motor sailer and I would not hesitate.
The gulfstream can be fickle and go from near calm to 40ft seas almost instantly. We used to fish the Bahamas every other weekend when I was a kid, in a 43 foot inboard twin. This was with dead reckoning and a sextant along with 1950's and 60's era charts..
We've towed back many who thought it would be a good idea to go out in anything under 28ft and got swamped.
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Old 02-09-2018, 12:47 PM
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25 plus times to the islands in a Dusky 203 with a single 175 Evinrude. More times than I remember in a 25 pursuit with a single 225 Evinrude. Bunches more in other less than 30' single engine powered boats. Almost all of them cc's. Almost never with a buddy boat. It's 52 miles from the mouth of Boynton Inlet to the entrance to the channel at West End. That means if I'm 26 miles out, I'm as close to the Bahamas as I am home. If someone told you they were fishing 26 miles out, would you tell them they're under 30' boat was too small. There are thousands of small boats that cross safely to the Bahamas everyday. Literally hundreds on any summer weekend day with decent weather in South/Southeast Florida. Watch the weather, maintain your boat, file a float plan, and have the necessary safety gear on board. Then go and have a good time. By the way, when I started crossing, there was no such thing as GPS, or Loran C. We did know how to navigate with a compass and a watch, though. Most of the folks running around in 30' plus boats now probably can't.
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Old 02-09-2018, 01:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WayneB View Post
I made the crossing in a boat about that size, never again. Young, Dumb and.. invincible. (yeah go with that!)
35ft or larger, or a motor sailer and I would not hesitate.
The gulfstream can be fickle and go from near calm to 40ft seas almost instantly. We used to fish the Bahamas every other weekend when I was a kid, in a 43 foot inboard twin. This was with dead reckoning and a sextant along with 1950's and 60's era charts..
We've towed back many who thought it would be a good idea to go out in anything under 28ft and got swamped.
Calm to 40' almost instantly? You're a funny guy, Wayne. I'm thinking you probably have never used a sextant either. No real reason to, when navigating to and from the Bahamas. A compass, yeah. A chart and a protractor? yup, if you don't already know the course. As in been there before. A sextant? Oooooookkkkkkkk.

Another little tidbit: Today's small outboard powered boats are way more reliable than a 50's or 60's twin inboard was. And a dang site faster. It took me about 1 1/2 hours from dock to dock in my last offshore boat to cross in decent weather. My buddies boat takes an hour, maybe a hair less. The amount of small boats that cross everyday, with any kind of issue being almost unheard of, gives lie to your post.

Last edited by pottydoc; 02-11-2018 at 09:11 PM.
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Old 02-12-2018, 09:40 AM
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Thanks for all of the information and good points. I had been thinking about the distance many people go for the swordfishing and deep dropping in small to mid size boats. I guess it all comes down to common sense and good judgement on finding a decent window to make the run.
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Old 02-12-2018, 10:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjorns4 View Post
Thanks for all of the information and good points. I had been thinking about the distance many people go for the swordfishing and deep dropping in small to mid size boats. I guess it all comes down to common sense and good judgement on finding a decent window to make the run.
Great post. Especially the last sentence.
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Old 02-15-2018, 07:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjorns4 View Post
I am a west coast boy and I love the idea and comfort of walkarounds. Out here I notice that most boaters have center consoles. Is there a reason that center console is favored so much down here? Is a walk around platform not suited for fishing in Florida or off the Georgia Coast.
Similar to you, as a kid I grew up out west in SoCal. My father did commercial fishing on the side, something 60 miles out. He had a 24' sea ray, I can barely remember as a kid (late 70's/ early 80's).
The Gulf and the Atlantic is a different beast.

I have a center console 19' carolina skiff. Able to go in shallows or slightly offshore on a great day.
Would I go to Bimini with it? Nope...unless I had a suicide mission.

You'll get a ton of opinions on here.
If you travel offshore, I believe dual motors are mandatory and size does matter in terms of length.

Good luck.
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Old 02-15-2018, 08:27 AM
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Originally Posted by 95g atl View Post
Similar to you, as a kid I grew up out west in SoCal. My father did commercial fishing on the side, something 60 miles out. He had a 24' sea ray, I can barely remember as a kid (late 70's/ early 80's).
The Gulf and the Atlantic is a different beast.

I have a center console 19' carolina skiff. Able to go in shallows or slightly offshore on a great day.
Would I go to Bimini with it? Nope...unless I had a suicide mission.

You'll get a ton of opinions on here.
If you travel offshore, I believe dual motors are mandatory and size does matter in terms of length.

Good luck.
Over the years people have crossed many times in jet skis, flats boats, bay bosts, and kayaks. Tens of thousands of boats go offshore with single motors everyday around our Country. Most commercial boats have single engines. I'm not advocating crossing in non offshore boats at all, but for trips from south Florida to the Bahamas, large multi engine boats are not necessary, or unsafe. That is proven every day when the weather is decent. If someone is not from that part of the State, they have no idea how many boats make that trip on every day the weather is good, year around. It's less than an hours run in many boats, two hours or less in waaaaayyy more than that.
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Old 02-15-2018, 09:39 AM
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Pick a nice summer morning and leave at first light.
Bimini is 47 miles. We did it in a 17 Boston Whaler a bunch of times. Sometimes it's as flat as a bass pond. Always other boats making the crossing on the same Bearing as you so no need for a buddy boat.
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Old 02-15-2018, 10:28 AM
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I'm scared to do it with my boat, 19' and single engine.
To each his own.
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