Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

12" White Stickers
BallOfSpray $5 Donation
BallOfSpray $10 Donation

I like my bubble back better than the 200. Blasphemy? Is it just homecourt advantage?

escmanazeescmanaze Posts: 573 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
So I have had my bubble back for 5 years now. It is the open bow, so supposedly isn't even quite as good as most bubble backs. I thought my future boat choice was obvious to go with an open bow 200. However, I have had 2 opportunities this summer to ski the same 200. I'm not in love. The wake feels much firmer than mine, and I would guess maybe right about the same size. I have skied it at 30 mph and 32 mph both at 15 off. Is this just because I'm used to my boat and I'm not used to the 200? Maybe I would get used to how to hit it more correctly? Maybe their Hydrogate isn't set up right?

Am I crazy?


  • escmanazeescmanaze Posts: 573 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    I should probably clarify. I don't mean to rag on the 200. The wake is still very good and if I ended up with one, I would still be a happy camper. I am just a little surprised and figured I could use a sanity check from some other folks.

    I would love to try a 14+ ProStar again. The one time I got to try it a few years ago, I remember the wake being very good at 28 mph and 30 mph- maybe even better than my boat. But it was a long time ago so I hate to try to pull too much out of the memory bank. I would also really like to try more 200s to see if it might be a hydrogate thing.
  • gregygregy Posts: 2,456 Mega Baller
    edited September 2017
    I've skied on two different 200s at 15off and the wakes felt like hitting curbs to me. 22 and 28off weren't bad but still harder than my 99 Response LX. The ProStar felt good, 15 and 22 were good, at 28off I can't feel much at all. I skied on a 2014 TXI that I was considering buying and went down to 30 mph at 15off and it was good, I was concerned because the 2007 to 2011 LXI had a big wake at slow speeds. The 196 will spoil you.
  • DanEDanE Posts: 829 Crazy Baller
    Hard to find a better or equal wake than a bb on longer lines than 35 off. 35 and shorter the trough between the wakes is filled in and therefore flatter on newer hulls from CC.
  • spicolispicoli Posts: 121 Baller
    I have bb and ski 200 all the time .I hadn't skied a Mc in years got behind a 17 Mc and the second I hit the wake I thought it was crisp didn't bother me but I noticed it I might be crazy but that's what I felt
  • 6balls6balls Posts: 4,881 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    When healthy I open at 28, I train a lot of 32 and 35, take some pokes at 38. Typically skied 2 BB's and a Response Lx...and of course the cadre of tourney boats at tourneys.
    At 32 off and shorter I have no preference. The 28 off opener I take the BB (my ski partner says same opening at 22). With the BB I notice zippo at 28 off the others the wake is fine but the first crossing gets my attention.
    Strange tho...first 200 I skied was a was a Parrish WR boat signed by him. It leaked a lot the bilge was always running. Best wake I've ever, ever skied and made me think the 200 was the bomb.
    Next tourney I skied a 200 was so excited only to have a curb at 28 off, great wake shorter but I was really surprised. Every 200 I've skied since has a good but noticeable wake at 28 and my BB has nothing at all there. With that...I actually prefer the BB as well as the TSC2 and 3 hulls. Love the Prostar wake. The new Txi I skied must be one of the good one's as I've heard complaints from others but have none personally.
    Dave Ross--die cancer die
  • jhughesjhughes Posts: 797 Mega Baller
    I currently own and love both a 200 and a TSC1. My wife is the great "tester of slow speed wakes" and loves both wakes. At 22 and shorter at 34 I can't tell a difference. 32 off seems better behind the 200 which has zero wake while I can feel a little blip behind the TSC1. TSC1 trick wake is amazing. Both boats are picky about weight distribution and the wake will be affected accordingly. As far as a general boat the 200 is in another universe over the TSC1. We are totally head over heels for ours while still appreciating how great of a boat the old TSC1 is.
  • WIRiverRatWIRiverRat Posts: 47 Baller
    In our little ski club we have a 98 BB Nautique, a '16 pro star, and a '17 pro star. Every single PB has been set behind the Nautique. Might have to do with Star Gazer vs Zero off but it is interesting how well a 19 year old boat stands up against the new ones. I do much prefer the larger space in the pro stars and the sight lines with no dash when driving though.
  • bigskieridahobigskieridaho Posts: 877 Crazy Baller
    @escmanaze Glad I am not the only one who thinks that. It is probably my least favorite boat to ski behind. Supposedly the best to drive, but not the best wake IMO. I much rather ski a bubble back or 196 all day. Wake is hard and turbulent, small yes, but not as good.
  • david_skidavid_ski Posts: 99 Baller
    @WIRiverRat Your comment "StarGazer vs ZeroOff" is probably the big difference. At least from my experience.

    Last year I trained behind a '93 ProStar 190 and a '98 196 TSC1 with Star Gazers. At tournaments and a couple of training days I would ski behind a 200. Every time behind a 200, I would be surprised by the curb and then I would be in scramble mode (22, 28, & 32off @34mph).

    Late last year I sold the '93 ProStar 190 and upgraded to a '03 196 TSC2 with a ZeroOff retrofit. Now 85% of my training is behind the '03 196. At tournaments this year, the 200's curb feels exactly the same as our '03 196 with no surprises.

    Previous years, skiing behind a ZeroOff boat was always a challenge. Skiing behind most PP boats felt like home. This year I am very comfortable behind a ZeroOff. When we ski behind the '98 196 TSC1, I notice that the boat doesn't pick me up at points that I have become accustomed to with ZeroOff. The pull at the gates with PP does not feel as strong as the ZeroOff. Just listen to a PP boats engine through the course vs a ZeroOff. The ZeroOff is much quicker to adjust RPM due to load changes.

    Add the ZeroOff pull at the gates "+" a slightly different boat wake that what you are used to "=" a surprise curb feel.
  • WIRiverRatWIRiverRat Posts: 47 Baller
    On the zero off vs StarGazer debate, I have notice that on the '17 prostar if I ski at A1 I can hardly tell the difference between that boat and the nautique. I can run in to 35off on either of those boats just fine. On the '16 prostar I always feel late and super rushed, and we are putting it on A1. The last time I skied that boat it took me 3 tries to run 22off (I couldn't tell you the last time I missed that pass behind any other boat) and I never did make a 28off. Does anyone know if there was a software revision to zero off during that time. The two pro stars are identical besides from one year newer but to me feel like they ski totally different.
  • WishWish Posts: 7,316 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Owner of a 97 BB so prob biased. I think compared to other current boats, it stacks up well and sometimes better wake wise. I have felt the curb at 28 behind some 200s and others nothing. Have not noticed a difference behind a newer MC or Bu to date. Was told by a reputable ski coach that the 97 hull is simply one of the best of the SN lineage and specifically the 97. He has had every yr model since the early 90s. Won't sell mine. Just repower when the engine gives in.
    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • MISkierMISkier Posts: 2,253 Mega Baller
    @WIRiverRat, one of our local 2016 Prostars that year had the completely wrong ZO software loaded from the factory. You could never get free of the boat and many couldn't run passes that were previously easy/never miss. Check that 16 to make sure it doesn't have the same error.
    The worst slalom equipment I own is between my ears.
  • KillerKiller Posts: 332 Baller
    I absolutely love my 196 and others I get to ski behind.

    I have a harder time skiing stargazer than zero off, but there are so many other variables at play. I don't ski the same course with the same driver so unless you are, it's not an accurate comparison.

    FWIW the new SG 9.0.1 with zbox feels damn close to ZO and offers an exceptional pull for training purposes (on my 196 GT40 at least). I go back and forth and never miss a beat when I am back behind a 200 with ZO
  • Jody_SealJody_Seal Posts: 2,426 Mega Baller
    I have now repowered and installed ZO in about a half a dozen Bubble back 196 SN's. One went to Mexico with a ZR-6. from every one of these customers all have said that the money was well spent in comparison to purchasing a newer boat. With a 343 Excalibur and a 668 ACME in conjunction with ZO these boats become great practice tractors. Cant wait to build mine!
    Hobby Boats can be expensive when the hobbyist is limited on their own skill and expertise.

  • BrennanKMNBrennanKMN Posts: 377 Crazy Baller
    edited September 2017
    I loved my bubble butt - it was my first inboard so it is hard to not love it. This year I sold it and moved into a 07 196 with ZO and I don't regret it one bit. If my 97 wasn't worth as much as it was a re-power would have been awesome. It just wasn't a smart plan for me financially. I could get a newer boat for the same or close to the price of re-powering my 97.

    @Jody_Seal Why the 668 instead of the 422? I have always heard the 422 was the ideal prop for the TSC series hulls.
  • 6balls6balls Posts: 4,881 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    @BrennanKMN I feel the same. Still in my BB 2000 model...a repower puts me close to where I coudl be with a sale of this one and a TSC3...and then I've gone significantly newer.
    One thing I really like about BB as a ski rear sun pad and storage compartment to climb over. We usually have no rear seat in but do right now (long story). I like being able to put my binding on in the boat but not on the ski, step on the center section of teh rear seat (upside down so fabric backed) and over. It's a lower step than from the floor. Having said that once back at the "swamp" next year the back seat comes out again.
    Dave Ross--die cancer die
  • BrennanKMNBrennanKMN Posts: 377 Crazy Baller
    I do miss my BB for getting in and out, but I have recently learned to embrace my rear storage locker. I am pretty anal about not getting water on the carpet of the boat. The boat stays in a garage and gets used 3-5 times a week, so it really hard to dry out.

    I got 3 rubber made tubs and filled the back locker with them. Now when you're done skiing you stand on the platform and put all your wet gear in them. I used to just use one huge bucket in the BB.

    I will admit that I am still young and nimble enough to just hop from backset over the locker to the platform on my new TSC3. However, not all my ski partners can so they step on it. That is one thing I totally agree with, it is not the easiest to get to the platform in the TSC3.
  • Jody_SealJody_Seal Posts: 2,426 Mega Baller
    I have one here now a 99 with monkey bars. $5,500 gets a good basis for a starter ski tug.
    A true jewel in the rough..
    Hobby Boats can be expensive when the hobbyist is limited on their own skill and expertise.

  • CBR51CBR51 Posts: 59 Baller
    Interesting that my first impression of the 200 was less than impressive also. Super hard wake at 28 off. Maybe it was hydrogate problem? I love the Bubble Back 97-01. But do find the wakes behind the TSC2 02-06, slightly softer. Haven't skied behind a TSC3 enough to form a strong enough opinion.
    Also as far as maintenance , I do like 2004 and newer for ease of impeller change with serpentine belt, and pump location
  • DragoDrago Posts: 1,253 Mega Baller
    '97 196: Pretty much The Best Slalom Wake Ever.
    SR SL Judge & Driver (“a driver who is super late on the wheel and is out of sync”)
  • gregygregy Posts: 2,456 Mega Baller
    Do the 200 wakes vary much with fuel level. One of the worst I skied in a tournament had a full tank, my knees were aching afterwards. I didn't know if it was a Hydrogate issue or what.
  • 6balls6balls Posts: 4,881 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Speaking of '97' buddy has his listed on SIA for $12.9k. GT40, PP, stereo, new seat cushions, Masters green.

    Dave Ross--die cancer die
  • harddockharddock Posts: 141 Baller
    I just moved up to a 200 from a 98 - The ride and tracking is much better. As for a better wake? That is a moot point as tournaments are pulled by 200's, or late model Malibu's, Centurions, or MC's. Now have Zero off instead of PP.
    Better to practice behind a boat similar to one you compete with.
  • swc5150swc5150 Posts: 2,018 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    @escmanaze Since you mentioned the Prostar, I thought I'd pipe in. I much prefer the MC wake to my bro's 200. You should give it a another test run if your getting ready to buy. There isn't a bad length on my boat, and the slow speed wake is great.

    FWIW, I used to have a negative opinion of modern tugs, versus TSC's, as being too big / family-oriented than a tournament boat should be. But now with a wife and daughter, all the space is exactly what we need.
    Scott Calderwood
  • BraceMakerBraceMaker Posts: 2,855 Mega Baller
    @BrennanKMN wish I garaged my boat daily, do you have electricity in the garage? Install a ceiling fan or drop in some outlets above the boat and run a few air movers. I run a dehumidifier in the garage to keep rust off my machine tools - combined you can dry a boat out in a few hours.
  • BrennanKMNBrennanKMN Posts: 377 Crazy Baller
    That is my winter project. I am going to put a fan on a timer above the boat. Then I can drop it in the garage, crank the fan on for a few hours and forget about it.
  • dvskierdvskier Posts: 310 Solid Baller
    I'm a Nautique guy, had one since 97 but the new MasterCraft has a sweet wake. I actually prefer it at 15 off.
  • spicolispicoli Posts: 121 Baller
    Wow I feel nothing behind my 98 but ski a 200 with big engine I don't even feel it got behind a 17. Mc and noticed wake every time I hit it didn't throw me off just felt it .do yall notice Mc clunk into gear and shake alittle but really liked the under gunnel ski rack
Sign In or Register to comment.