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New Bare Bones or Used Big 3?

OSUwaterskierOSUwaterskier Posts: 67 Baller
edited February 9 in Boat Talk
If you had $35k to spend on a ski boat, would you prefer a brand-new, 196-shape hull with ZO and a 5-year warranty or a modern big 3 with 800+ hours (estimate from quick SIA research)?

I see many advantages and disadvantages in each. If you would prefer a bare bones, maybe leave a comment with what you'd like to see in a true ski tractor. For the sake of the argument, lets say the ski tractor would be approved to pull tournaments.

New Bare Bones or Used Big 3? 88 votes

New Bare Bones Ski Tractor
30%
skidawgeleeskiskibugscotchipmanEdmundBruce_ButterfieldThan_BoganeyepeelerMickeyThompsonWishchris_loganTaperflexdbskidavid_skiBG1ALPJrescmanazeOrlando76supergadgetadkh2oskier 27 votes
Used Big 3 Ski Boat
69%
HortonDekeDWmlangedislandkpickettChad_ScottsixballrawlyChef23skibrainvtjcKelvinRpc29jhughesGAJ0004bajaBulldograynJordan 61 votes
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Comments

  • BraceMakerBraceMaker Posts: 2,669 Mega Baller
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    Third option please! I very much enjoy the size of the 2014+ prostar hull. While a 196 shape hull is great and all, the extra room in the newer gen hulls makes this a tough poll. I'm in the camp waiting for a 2014 MC to come down in price.
  • JordanJordan Posts: 1,006 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    I think you would do better on resale versus what you paid on the used Big Three boat.
  • MuskokaKyMuskokaKy Posts: 275 Baller
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    for your budget get a Centurion Carbon Pro. Best option in my opinion and you can get a 2014 for around that price with trailer.{ might have to add 10% but it would be worth it}
  • DWDW Posts: 1,819 Crazy Baller
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    @OSUwaterskier : Question - are you trying to indicate the New bare bones tractor is a CC off the 196 mold -or- is it a new brand attempting to break in to the market (the way I answered the question). Depending on how you answer would result in a different answer for each option.
  • OSUwaterskierOSUwaterskier Posts: 67 Baller
    @DW definitely a break into the market - using the 196 shape as an example of something that is not new, ground breaking technology but definitely not something to scoff at either...
  • jhughesjhughes Posts: 781 Crazy Baller
    edited February 9
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    History has shown that nobody really wants a cheap bare-bones new boat. Even the Nautique "standards" which were total stripper boats in 93-95ish didn't fly off the shelves.


  • RazorRoss3RazorRoss3 Posts: 1,301 Mega Baller
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    @OSUwaterskier I'm not sure I understand your question. Are you suggesting that you can get a 2018 Mastercraft, Malibu, or Nautique with no options for $35K? Because I find that difficult to believe. A used big 3 for that price is a great option especially if it has ZO, like @MuskokaKy said though, if you are willing to broaden out to Centurion you will be able to get a few model years more current at the same cost.
  • wawaskrwawaskr Posts: 153 Baller
    Been done in the past a couple of times.....and now your potential market is a fraction of the size it used to be.....
    Matt
  • OSUwaterskierOSUwaterskier Posts: 67 Baller
    @RazorRoss3 Intention was for the ski tractor option to be a new brand with only the essentials. I have no idea if it could be done for $35k but if HeyDey can make a (somewhat) wake boat for $29k as @AdamCord showed on the other thread, you'd think a direct drive at or below that price point would be a possibility.
  • swc5150swc5150 Posts: 1,967 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    Agreed, poll needs more options. I'd never buy an "off brand" boat, but would and have purchased a bare bones big 3. Another caveat is I wouldn't buy a big 3 bare bones-specific model, like an SN176 or Sportstar. Back in '06 my new 196 was completely stripped, only option was the 330 engine. Paid under $30k for boat, cover and trailer, and added PP myself.
    Scott Calderwood
  • RazorRoss3RazorRoss3 Posts: 1,301 Mega Baller
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    @OSUwaterskier if a new brand boat tracked well, gave me a good wake, and had the proper speed control then I would be interested but bare bones is a hard sell. When it's cold I value things like heaters so I would still likely migrate to an old hull of something I know because I know what I'm getting into and it would have some of the luxury features than make it more than a motor on water.
  • bigskieridahobigskieridaho Posts: 840 Crazy Baller
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    I would never pick a bare bones boat. I have the need for an open bow, heaters, shower and all the goods. There are some great used boats to be had which included my 2009 Malibu Response that I bought last year. It is crazy when I see these New Mastercraft PS’s And the new Responses with no seats in the front or back but I understand that they are used just for skiing and provide for the best wakes. Non registered and only used at private lakes.
  • ALPJrALPJr Posts: 1,599 Crazy Baller
    edited February 9
    New Bare Bones Ski Tractor
    I chose new assuming that the quality would meet today's standards. That 93 SN above was perfect imo. I don't need an upholstered motor cover, audio, fancy dash or extra storage space. I'd prefer a sea deck type floor covering too.
  • oldjeepoldjeep Posts: 3,025 Mega Baller
    @ALPJr - sea deck increases cost, not reduces it.
    Chuck P
    Not a mechanic but I play one at home
  • BraceMakerBraceMaker Posts: 2,669 Mega Baller
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    My preferred interior is just gelcoat deck - textured with a snap in carpet.

    That way you can roll up the carpet carry it to the house vacuum and scrub it, let it dry and use it only when you want to.

    Even better would be strips of carpet that snap in down both sides of the dog house.
  • Than_BoganThan_Bogan Posts: 6,014 Mega Baller
    New Bare Bones Ski Tractor
    Easy question, but my answer is tainted because I "need" it to fit through the infamous mousehole tunnel.
    Nathaniel Bogan -- GUT Padawan
  • swc5150swc5150 Posts: 1,967 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    @BraceMaker That's my Prostar, and I love it. Carpet is stored in my house, and I just toss a thick bathroom mat at the stern entry.
    Scott Calderwood
  • NandoNando Posts: 419 Crazy Baller
    If the new, bare-bones boat had comparable fit and finish and wake, I might go new. The thing for me is (or was, as I re-boated myself recently) that for considerably less than $35K you can get a very nice used 196, ProStar or Malibu.
  • 6balls6balls Posts: 4,842 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    I still struggle with the question b/c you are drawing a 196 into the mix.

    Maybe it should say if an off brand built you a no frills closed bow slalom tug with ZO and great wakes for $35K new would you buy that or:

    --a depreciated big 3 for same cost
    --a SN 196 with ZO current value in the mid to maybe upper $20k's.
    --a Centurion Carbon Pro---not a big 3 but an established player with known quality

    I will take a depreciated big 3 if I need open bow for $35K, or if I need a closed bow tug a used SN 196 with ZO.
    Third choice a Carbon Pro with ZO.
    In no case do I buy a stripper off brand boat when these other options are available.

    Not a fair fight...200 hours, tower, wedge, 6.0 motor, zero off

    Boat



    Dave Ross--die cancer die
  • JASJAS Posts: 188 Baller
    I may be missing something but what efforts are any of the big three making to produce a ski boat that fits budget for average Joe?. Business models and company growth has followed the $$ and left waterskiing without affordable new boat options. How much are we willing to pay for something that we use for recreation 6 months per year?

    No doubt the new boats are state of art in form and function, but on the other end of rope where the fun happens not that much different. Evolution of boat design has created some great hulls, add reliable power and could this could be something great for our sport. Just my thoughts.
  • JustinJustin Posts: 48 Baller
    I really don't consider any of the new ski tugs ''plush''or loaded up. They are already bare bones in comparison to ANY Wake / Surf boat that is out right now. The question is what are we paying for? They have minimal vinyl and seating, no storage, they are running smaller power plants, no ballast, minimal stereo systems ( maybe 4 speakers), no towers etc... So how can they justify the price tags on these new Ski boats? They are not 1 ounce better or more comfortable than any Ski boat in the last 15-20 years IMO. It really seems like the big 3 Ski tugs are just riding on the coat tails of the Wake / Surf boat market as far as price increases. The biggest evolvement in ski boats in the last 20 years has been Zero Off, thats about it. Correct me if I am wrong, just a frustrated blue collar fan of the sport.
    My 2 cents...
  • dbutcherdbutcher Posts: 273 Solid Baller
    I wouldn't say you are wrong, but the new boat engines are far superior to those of 15-20 years ago. They develop more horsepower and torque per cubic inch of displacement. They start better, run better, require less maintenance (eg. no points etc.), are more dependable, and use fuel more efficiently. There's more high tech in them, they are made of aluminum (lighter in weight), and all of that costs money.
  • swc5150swc5150 Posts: 1,967 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    I don’t know, our Prostar is light years ahead of our last 196 in terms of creature features and technology...not to mention better wake and tracking. I feel I got my money’s worth.
    Scott Calderwood
  • Bill22Bill22 Posts: 1,423 Crazy Baller
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    I keep my stuff for a long time so passing up a new "good" boat (tracking, wake, fit, finish all OK) would be tough. Resale was a big factor against brand X.

    If the new brand X boat was not small like the boats of the 90's then I probably would choose it.
    In gear. Hit It. Thank You!
  • DWDW Posts: 1,819 Crazy Baller
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    Ironically, I turned my 'used big 3 optioned tug' in to a stripper! Lots of 'luxury' parts stored in the garage. All in search of that magical wake.
  • BraceMakerBraceMaker Posts: 2,669 Mega Baller
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    So who owns a moomba?
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 3,505 MM Trick Skier / Eccentric Person
    New Bare Bones Ski Tractor
    Stan got a lot of quality hours and good tournament results from training behind his Moomba. Reasonable boat. Saved him a lot compared to my fancy boats. I skied behind it often and it worked.

    ZO and the awesome boat MC offered in 08 made him move. But he was able to save enough to do that thanks to the Moomba.

    Eric
  • BraceMakerBraceMaker Posts: 2,669 Mega Baller
    Used Big 3 Ski Boat
    There's one. I've skied behind Aztec coyotes. There have been some attempts anyhow
  • oldjeepoldjeep Posts: 3,025 Mega Baller
    @BraceMaker or a gekko gts20. As i stated in another thread, the boat these guys yearn for has existed for years and nobody bought it. Tiny closed bow, zo and around 35k
    Chuck P
    Not a mechanic but I play one at home
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