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Boat recommendation - Duckworth vs Alumaweld

PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2016 7:59 pm
by divankov
Could really use some help here. I am looking at a number of boats right now but am really torn. Currently I have an Alumaweld Blackhawk 202 which has been a good boat but really leaves you feeling beaten if you are out in any mildly rough water and only has a 38 gallon tank. Therefore, I am considering moving to a Duckworth Navigator 235 or Duckworth Offshore 26. I really like the Navigator 235 since it is trailer-able and should get relatively good fuel economy but am a bit worried that it would ride similarly to my Alumaweld which is my primary concern since I want to start trying to go further out. It is heavier and does have the reverse chine but hard to know when you can't test them and there are limited reviews out there. I also wonder if I should be looking at fiberglass boats like the Seasport or Skagit Orcas although those look like they get much more expensive. Does anyone have experience with these who could offer some thoughts? Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.

-D bangheadwall

Re: Boat recommendation - Duckworth vs Alumaweld

PostPosted: Tue Sep 06, 2016 6:59 am
by Nelly
Good morning D,

You're starting off the shopping/comparing process at a great time and asking the right questions! That goes a loooong way to finding yourself in a boat that will keep you safe, comfortable and happy with your choice in the long term.

It will not come as much of a surprise to you that I find a lot of answers in your question.
First off, in your current ride, you're not comfortable and that has you seriously looking for an upgrade so let's confine the discussion to the two Duckworth models you mentioned.

It's interesting that by implication you consider the 26 Offshore to not be as trailerable as the Duckworth Navigator 235. The Navigator has a dry weight of 2600lbs and while the Offshore has a dry weight of 5300lbs, both hulls are easily handled by a dual axle trailer and 3/4 ton pickup.
I run a Weldcraft 280 Cuddy King which I launch and recover by myself frequently.

What the Offshore offers is a softer ride, heated cabin and higher eye-height over the water that will, ultimately add to the days you can use your boat which lengthens your season.

On the other hand, the 235 Navigator is a significant upgrade from your current hull, will be less costly to tow/operate than the Offshore and if your "two-footitis" progresses as mine has, the Navigator will hold it's value quite well if you ultimately decide to take the Offshore plunge.

To the choice of the glass boats, IMHO.. In this region the disadvantages of fiberglass hulls with regard to increased weight and maintenance.

Some boaters prefer the look and feel of a fiberglass hull and that's great! Beauty is in the eye of the beholder but do not be swayed by claims that 'glass boats just "ride softer" than aluminum hulls.

It does not matter to the water what the hull material is. The issue is hull shape

Since the advent of CAD (Computer Aided Design) aluminum cutting and fabrication programs in the 1980's and the decades of developments in the interim, pound for pound, aluminum hulls are stronger and softer riding than their composite counterparts cheers

Re: Boat recommendation - Duckworth vs Alumaweld

PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2016 9:22 pm
by divankov

As always fantastic advice here and I appreciate the response. Ask one of the saying in that is if you have a view of simrad vs lowrance electronics. Currently run hds3 in my alumaweld and if I upgrade boatswondering whether I should move to the simrad package for the new boat. Is there any real difference between the two or is it just a branding piece and they'r really largely the same? Appreciate yourinput.

Re: Boat recommendation - Duckworth vs Alumaweld

PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2016 11:40 am
by Nelly
Good afternoon D,
While Simrad and Lowrance have the same parent company (Navico) similar functionality and many system elements are interchangeable, there are vast differences in the two brands.

For our purposes as 20-foot class boat fishermen, the most important difference is that a main engine autopilot is more ingrained into Simrad's DNA. There are dedicated autopilot hard keys on all NSS evo2 displays whereas Lowrance does not.

Both brands will serve you well and if you need an on-the water Simrad Demo let me know. My boat will also be in the Seattle Boat Show for easy access cheers

Re: Boat recommendation - Duckworth vs Alumaweld

PostPosted: Sat Apr 29, 2017 2:48 pm
by Hewescraft220
I recently bought a new 2016 Hewescraft Ocean Pro HT/ET and I powered it with the new Yamaha F200xb. I do all my fishing out in the straits off Port Angeles and Sequim, regularly fishing Hein and Dallas Bank and now in Canadian Waters for salmon and halibut.

There has been days out there where I am glad I moved up to an Ocean Pro as I was thinking of a SeaRunner. The boat is just amazing and I have never felt beaten or roughed up if I have been out in sloppy weather. A few times I have had water break over the boat but she powered nicely through it and safely home to port.
I tried other manufacturers even local ones here on the Olympic Peninsula like Crozier or Lee Shore, but nothing compared to the fit and finish of the Hewes.

The Hewes are definitely best value for money out there and re-sale too. Hope this helps even as it is a late post.

Re: Boat recommendation - Duckworth vs Alumaweld

PostPosted: Sun Apr 30, 2017 7:40 am
by Nelly
Glad you're happy with your ride and it's working for you!

Just out of curiosity, Did you take other boats for a ride prior to pulling the trigger and did you get yours out for a test drive before signing on the dotted line?

Re: Boat recommendation - Duckworth vs Alumaweld

PostPosted: Wed May 03, 2017 6:18 pm
by Hewescraft220
Hi Nelly.

My wife and I spent a week early last year visiting different boat builders in Eastern Washington and on the west Side. I'm a welder by trade and have welded on boats for years so I know good and bad weld quality when I see it.

We looked at Raider, Alumaweld, Duckworth, Hewescraft. We set our sights on the 22-24ft category as basically it's just my wife and I who are avid fisher folks. I think the worst welds I saw had small stringer beads and loads of undercut. That finished that one for me.

The rest were not bad at all but the best boat of all was the Hewescraft Ocean Pro with the full Alaskan Bulkhead and extended transom. We got a spin in it too on the Columbia river and it is a hell of a boat to drive. The fit and finish was exceptional and it was the best value for money by a mile. But I still went and visited the Hewescraft factory up in Colville as I wanted to see boats being built myself and I was not disappointed at all. Top notch facility putting out 18 boats a week which is just phenomenal and the workmanship is amazing. Inside flotation tank to test all boats too.
After that I was very happy to sign a check with my local Hewescraft Dealer in Port Townsend which is WestSide Marine. Small but very personal dealership and would stand on their head for you. Anything I've asked has been done by them. Would highly recommend them to anyone considering buying a Hewescraft. Tom N Jerrys were just too arrogant with "were the biggest and best dealer out there". When I heard that I turned around and walked out.

No regrets with the Ocean Pro 220 at all Nelly. For the $$$ it's an amazing unit. I'm looking forward with my wife to many happy years fishing out of her.