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Hey guys, need everyones advise. Fish Chokoloskee mostly and like to make long runs, have an old hews stalker now and looking to upgrade. How does the 17 and 18 HPX V handle a chop on the outside? My other considerations are the hews redfisher, or a 17 or 18 MA. We fish 50% outside and 50% back country but are sick of getting beat when outside in any kind of chop. 90% trolling motor and 10% on the pole. Just not sure the HPX will handle the chop like we want. Thanks for your input

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I have experience fishing many hours on all the models you are considering and I tend to agree with fldxt based on your usage. Go with an MA. I'll always miss the ride of my old 17MA. 

Over the past 25 years fishing Choko I've only seen two Hewes Stalkers and one of them was recent. What's up Frank!? Call me to discuss anytime.

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13" draft at rest if the boat is balanced correctly. You'll need 3' of water to get on a plane to avoid tearing up mud or grass. That was my experience aboard both of my friend's 18MA's powered by later model 2 stroke 150hp Yamahas that we fished extensively in the Glades. My old 17MA was about the same.  

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12 minutes ago, conocean said:

13" draft at rest if the boat is balanced correctly. You'll need 3' of water to get on a plane to avoid tearing up mud or grass. That was my experience aboard both of my friend's 18MA's powered by later model 2 stroke 150hp Yamahas that we fished extensively in the Glades. My old 17MA was about the same.  

Bob, left you a message on your answering machine

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Paul, I am probably splitting hairs here, but I would challenge you depths a bit, but not by much.  With trim tabs and jack plate, I have always looked for 2.5 feet to pop up, and am careful about tearing up grass.  as I write this though, I am realizing that I am using my depthfinder, so the tranducer depth is probably the difference.

 

As for draft, seems like I can pole around nicely with two guys in 10-12 inches, but where I go i am often in muddy bottoms so that may explain it .   

 

But would agree, the MA is welll suited for what you describe.  The old ones -85, 87 Are a lot lighter than the later models, so if you find one that was restored or are willing to take it on, you will get a little skinnier.   

 

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I just purchased a MA 17, based upon the recommendation of Conocean as I was running a 17T Pathy and talk about a beating :(

The MA17 is probably the "perfect" boat for Choko for outside fishing as you describe....I've owned the boat for about a year or so, and have probably 20 trips....it cuts the chop equal to my Pathfinder 22, but, is not as heavy, so you can take a few more chances...

 

Paul is right on in terms of draft...it runs like a Pathfinder and drafts like one as well....you just need to be careful on an outgoing tide when up in the bights or you will spend the night...

It's easy to handle on the trailer and in the water....definately go with a 24V Ulterra, as again, Paul is correct, you need a bit of water to get up....3' is about right, for no bottom damage, so I tend to use the TM for long periods of time to get to deeper water...

It has a huge livewell for shrimp or livebait, and I use the port rear box for my bag of death, filled with ICE for the day's redfish catch...

I have an old 115, and it pushes about 35-37mph at WOT, and cruises at 30 very nicely.

I've fished the 18HPX and she does ride nice, but, you'll pay $$ now for even a used one...if you are happy to do some DIY, you can find some MA17's, but, they are either $$$ as they have been upgraded or less $$$ and you need to do some work....

 

My MA17 is a 1995 and was a cream-puff...garage kept for 22 years....again, Paul saw it on the forum, he called me, and I bought it sight un-seen only for pics the next morning....it still smells of fresh fiberglass....

PIng me anytime and I'm happy to provide some guidance and if you are in SoFla, I'll show you the upgrades - all new wiring in the box, 2 powerpoles, Ultera, etc. etc.

 

DC

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Dino- That's good info for Frank! 

Gus- There isn't a MA made that can float in 10" of water with 2 guys & gear aboard. 12" of water is required just to push across mud. As for jumping up on a plane, try to get any MA on a plane where there is rock bottom in less than 3' of water.....you will take chunks out of our skeg. My buddy found this out the hard way about 20 years ago in the Glades! :ph34r: 

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37 minutes ago, conocean said:

Dino- That's good info for Frank! 

Gus- There isn't a MA made that can float in 10" of water with 2 guys & gear aboard. 12" of water is required just to push across mud. As for jumping up on a plane, try to get any MA on a plane where there is rock bottom in less than 3' of water.....you will take chunks out of our skeg. My buddy found this out the hard way about 20 years ago in the Glades! :ph34r: 

Perhaps the past 7 months without her has made my memories of her performance a bit more whimsical.  I do seem to recall poling her in spit one time and slicing through 40' swells.  Are you going to tell me I am wrong about that too?   

 

Sheesh, leave a guy to his fantasies, man!  Its all I got at the moment!

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Don't think anyone answered your question about "chop". I have only owned the 18 HPX so I can't compare it to the other boats you mentioned. What I can tell you is that it handles chop very well. During the winter months in the Keys when it's too windy to pole, I spend most of my time on the "outside". I can't tell you how many looks I get when I;m several miles out and the guys in the 23-25 ft Center consoles are looking at me wondering what I'm doing out there. My guess is the  18 Redfisher probably handles even better but  for me is too much for what I like best, which is poling/fishing on the flats.

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1 hour ago, B2TB said:

Don't think anyone answered your question about "chop"

.it cuts the chop equal to my Pathfinder 22, but, is not as heavy, so you can take a few more chances...

I also owned a RF18...and it does not compare at all to cutting the gulf chop when  running home from Lostman's River when the West Wind picks up :) 

The RF is a a bit more "roomy" ....a nice boat with a backrest....livewell etc.......but, until I have actually owned one...I never understood the "mystic" of the skiff...and to the person, I have never had anyone tell me they are glad they sold their MA17...most say, I wish had the $$$ to have kept her....

 

DC

 

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The draft numbers are pretty accurate, I can spin up in less than 3ft of water but not much, usually full tank of fuel and just me. Big 4 blade, tabs buried and head to port I can usually get up shallower than 3.

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3 minutes ago, FLDXT said:

The draft numbers are pretty accurate, I can spin up in less than 3ft of water but not much, usually full tank of fuel and just me. Big 4 blade, tabs buried and head to port I can usually get up shallower than 3.

Yes, with my 4 blade as well....but, unless it's an emergency...I normally don't...just idle out to 4 feet or so, then pop up :)

 

dc

 

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11 hours ago, Wanaflatsfish said:

.it cuts the chop equal to my Pathfinder 22, but, is not as heavy, so you can take a few more chances...

I also owned a RF18...and it does not compare at all to cutting the gulf chop when  running home from Lostman's River when the West Wind picks up :) 

The RF is a a bit more "roomy" ....a nice boat with a backrest....livewell etc.......but, until I have actually owned one...I never understood the "mystic" of the skiff...and to the person, I have never had anyone tell me they are glad they sold their MA17...most say, I wish had the $$$ to have kept her....

 

DC

 

I think he was referring to the HPX chop handling compared to the MA and the Redfisher.   I would live to hear an accurate and experienced opinion on this from someone who has had both an MA and an HPX.   

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I am very pleased with my Redfisher 16 ride in a chop.  It has a nice vee and handles rough water like a larger boat.  I have run my boat head-on into 15-20 mph winds with a capping chop on the lake, trimmed the bow down, and run on top at cruising speed - and was dry and comfortable.  I can only assume the Redfisher 18 is even better.  Draft on the website specs is accurate as far as I can tell.  Maybe Dabear or other HPX-V 18 owners will chime in too.

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6 hours ago, whichwaysup said:
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I think he was referring to the HPX chop handling compared to the MA and the Redfisher. 

I would live to hear an accurate and experienced opinion on this from someone who has had both an MA and an HPX.   

That would be me. You can't compare an apple to an orange. MA wins in that department by a longshot. 

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7 hours ago, hurricane said:

If you don't like the ride and you're getting beat up in a Hewes stalker, the last boat you should consider is an hpx. 

What he said. The MA is your best bet. Especially if your on the trolling motor 90% of the time. 

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22 hours ago, whichwaysup said:

I think he was referring to the HPX chop handling compared to the MA and the Redfisher.   I would live to hear an accurate and experienced opinion on this from someone who has had both an MA and an HPX.   

FWIW...I think my experience is accurate.....I've fished HPX's probably 1/2 doz times in varying conditions, owned a RF18 for 18 months and fished in Choko weekly back in 2004, owned 2 pathfinders 22PF and 17T....now own a 17MA.....I've fished Egret's, Rangers, Hell's Bay's, etc. (not in the discussion) so I don't really know what more "accurate or experience opinion" is needed.

 

DC

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