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3 Rounds, 3 Boats

RogerRoger Posts: 1,564 Mega Baller
edited April 2010 in News & Other Stuff
<p>
<span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'">We skied a 3 Round Record Slalom tournament at </span><span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'">Palm Bay</span><span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'"> Saturday (</span><span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'">4/3/2010</span><span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'">). I drove the same group of skiers with each hull with skiers running from something at 22 to something at 39. Here is how I felt about the boats:</span>
</p>
<p>
<span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'"></span><span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'">2010 Mastercraft: I was able to drive a straight path with this boat, but it required more steering input than the other two. This was partially due to inadequate rudder torque. In Master Men, I pulled two skiers who can run well into 39, John Shealy and Bruce Dodd. John is light and has a fairly light and symmetrical pull while Bruce is probably 30lbs or so heavier (all muscle) and pulls like a freight train especially off the 1,3,5 side. With this boat, I was probably moving the wheel a couple of inches for each direction with John. With Bruce it was 2 to 4 inches for 2,4, and 8 to 10 inches for 1,3,5.</span>
</p>
<p>
<span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'"></span><span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'">2010 </span><span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'">Malibu</span><span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'">: I was also able to drive a straight path with this boat. It was a bit difficult getting a good sight picture though because the seat is too low in the boat. John Shealy drove this boat for Open and said he was actually pushing up against the back of the seat enough that his butt was not in the seat at all. A 2 inch riser would help this boat (or at least the drivers) a lot. Tracking with the same two skiers was similar to the Mastercraft.</span>
</p>
<p>
<span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'"></span><span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'">2010 SN 200: The best tracking boat I have driven to date. The sight picture is unmatched, period. The tracking is phenomenal by any standard. With the same two skiers, very little movement of the wheel was required for john at all and for Bruce, very little at all on 2,4 and a couple of inches on 1,3,5. As with the Mastercraft (which was suffering from lack of rudder torque), it's about setup. The SN had the proper rudder torque and it made all the difference. I drove a lot of practice at the Nationals and came away under whelmed with the SN 200. I thought it tracked ok, but not head and shoulders above a properly setup 196. I knew the practice boat had too little rudder torque though. Now that I've driven 3 other 200s with the proper torque, it's no contest.</span>
</p>
<p>
<span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'"></span><span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'">The end course videos show the differences in tracking quite well. With the MC and the MB, you can really see the rotation around the center axis of the boat (IE: the tail of the boat appears to swing back and forth even though the pylon is going down the middle). </span>
</p>
<p>
<span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'"></span><span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'">I'll be driving a MC which is well set up this weekend at our Okeeheelee tournament, so I'm expecting better results than Saturday (at least a match for the MB as I've driven a well setup MC before and it was superb).</span>
</p>
<p>
<span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'"></span><span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'">All three are really terrific boats, but there are differences at both ends of the rope. I would ski behind any of them without complaint and drive any of them (with maybe a cushion in the MB), but given a choice, I'd pick the SN 200 to drive.</span>
</p>
<p>
<span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'"></span><span style="font-size: 10.5pt; color: #062971; font-family: 'Trebuchet MS'">These are my impressions as a driver only. Aside from the 200, I had driven all these boats before. But, this is the first time I drove all three hulls with the same set of skiers so I could really compare them.</span><font face="Times New Roman" size="3" color="#000000"> </font>
</p>
Roger B. Clark - Okeeheelee skier. Senior driver, Senior Judge
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Comments

  • robscholl-OFrobscholl-OF Posts: 287 Baller
    Rodger, good comments and observations.  I so wish we could get all three of those boats together for a weekend and have them set up all correctly.  Then ski the crap out of them with all types of skier from novice 24 mph to 36 mph extreme shortline.  It will be then, the boat that is truly best will shine.  It is kind of like when the magazines do a car test and complain about tire noise and handling.  They then put the same tire on all the cars and the test becomes really about the cars.  OF 
  • Old MS AccoutOld MS Accout Posts: 2,114 Baller
    <p>
    You are very lucky to get the big 3 at any tournements. We used a 2006 RLXI last fall due to no promo boats.
    </p>
    <p>
    I wish I was in FL. I think there will be lots of tow boat exemptions this year.
    </p>
    <p>
    Great comments Roger. Having driven all 3 of the 2010s, I would agree with you. Hands down best looking Promo is the 2010 MC with that cool blue. I love the way that boat looks.     
    </p>
  • RogerRoger Posts: 1,564 Mega Baller
    edited April 2010
    <p>
    MS, yeah I guess that is lucky. Didn't think about it that way since I go to most of their tournaments and they have sort of a unique thing there with the boats. Two of the residents are promo owners, 1 with Mastercraft, 1 with Malibu. They nearly always bring in a Nautique so that site typically has all three brands available for the tournament.
    </p>
    <p>
    I also agree that the 2010 MC is a terrific looking boat. I hated the all black/black with red thing they had the last couple of years. The 200 can also look great with the right color pattern (IMO).
    </p>
    <p>
    <img src="http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2613/3991289577_be4d341316_o.jpg" border="0" alt="2010 Nautique 200" width="1024" height="683" align="left" />
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    Roger B. Clark - Okeeheelee skier. Senior driver, Senior Judge
  • 454SS454SS Posts: 169 Baller
    does anyone have a pic of the 2010 mc promo is it anything like the ones that were black with white stars they used in at one of the waterski fantasy camps those were definitely top notch in the looks department
  • DWDW Posts: 2,060 Mega Baller
    <p>
    Great report!  Good job, that is very helpful input for someone choosing a boat for purchase. 
    </p>
    <p>
    I think that a certain subscription IMO has been written from my check book with the thought of that type of feedback being posted in a certain magazine (at least it used to be).
    </p>
    <p>
    OF, just as a note, the same tires on two different vehicles actually does not normalize the test in a true fashion but your premise is accurate in a pure sense.  OEM tires are actually specifically built to the OEM specifications for that particular vehicle or tuned to fit a set of specific parameters.  True to your comment, they may not be optimally tuned for handling or noise. Actually, the EPA regulations drive a significant amount of the design with the attempt to maximize fuel economy.  As an example, the true ride rate or spring rate of the vehicle is changed with a tire of different construction since tire sidewall stiffness is a significant part of the ride rate equation.  A good example was the infamous Ford Explorer tire was different than the "same" one used by a different manufacturer.
    </p>
  • robscholl-OFrobscholl-OF Posts: 287 Baller
    <p>
    DW,
    </p>
    <p>
    Good point, I was just trying to say I wish we could have all three boats at the same lake, the same day.  They would all have their rudder loaded, the Malibu seat would be spaced up an inch.  (Doing this on my Malibu as it is cheap and easy.  Makes a big difference)  All would have the similar engine, Zero Off and no Tower (Or all have a tower).  Then ski and drive all of them.  At the end of the day I would bet you would have a winner.  It would not mean the other boats are bad, as Rodger said, they are all terrific boats and he would be happy to drive and ski behind any one of them.  There just is one that at the end of the day I/We would would break out our checkbook and buy.
    </p>
    <p>
    Hey Horton, why not the independent boat test.  RD has a towerless MC 196 promo coming.  All we need is a Malibu LXI and CC 200 open bow.  OF
    </p>
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  • RichardDoaneRichardDoane Posts: 4,243 Mega Baller
    Roger - how much "preload" do you like in a towboat, and how do you measure it ?
    BallOfSpray Pacific Northwest Vice President of Event Management, aka "Zappy"
  • skibugskibug Posts: 2,043
    <p>
    <font color="#000000">This is a little off the topic of performace....but.....I bought an '09 MC 197 TT last fall, specifically because I didn't like that the 2010 is blue; but my comment here is basically about</font> e<span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial"><font color="#000000">sthetics, cleaning, waxing and such.  It seems like a small thing; but, all those stars, letters, and emblems are a real pain in the a$$ to deal with when detailing and wiping it down.  They look good (and better from further away) but they are held on with an adhesive backing that doesn't extend to the ends of the features which allows the edges not to be sealed to the surface.  Meaning that every single letter and star has edges that are raised and super easy to snag your towel, absorber, or fingers on.  Furthernore, I can see one of them ripping off one day when accidently caught by someone trying to be helpful in wiping down your boat.  I had an '03 Malibu Response before this.  It had the raise vinyl letters and features and those are much better as they are sealed to the surface all the way to the edges.</font></span>
    </p>
    <p>
    <span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial">As far as performance, I did have to have the rudder port replaced as it was very loose (bearing and/or bushing had worn out) and I could feel the lack of response in the handling.  I had a hard time keeping it straight down the course; it took a lot of wheel to do so and then the back end would sway too much.  There was only 130 hrs on the boat.  Mastercraft took care of it under warranty.  It is a more common occurance on their bigger wake board boats; but, I would suggest all take a look at theirs if you feel the the tracking is not up to par.  I am not sure what model years would be affected.  I was under the impression that it was the '09 model years; but, I am not sure. </span>
    </p>
    <p>
    <span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial"></span>
    </p>
    Bob Grizzi
  • RogerRoger Posts: 1,564 Mega Baller
    <p>
    Richard, I like a medium amount of torque. If I let go of the wheel while driving straight, the boat should make a left turn (or right if MC or MB) from the current path. Not a hook turn, but a decided turn. At least one driver at our site likes a firm torque on the wheel. This is ok as far as keeping a straight boat path but to me causes too much fatugue and for me at least, doesn't enhance the steerability of the boat much beyond the medium amount. Mainly, you want some preload on the wheel so some input is required to drive in a straight line. This keeps the boat from hunting while not under skier load.
    </p>
    <p>
    Maybe I'll measure the lbs of pull on the wheel on my boat with a fish scale or something to see what it actually is, never thought to do that before...
    </p>
    Roger B. Clark - Okeeheelee skier. Senior driver, Senior Judge
  • RichardDoaneRichardDoane Posts: 4,243 Mega Baller
    Roger - thanks for the input, one of the most important things for a "promo" boat, is that it arrives at the site perfectly set up, and ready to go.  One of the biggest complaints about the previous MC guy in our area, was that the boat was never properly set up.
    BallOfSpray Pacific Northwest Vice President of Event Management, aka "Zappy"
  • RogerRoger Posts: 1,564 Mega Baller
    <div class="CommentHeader">
    <ul>
    <li><span><font size="1" color="#aaaaaa">CommentAuthor</font></span><a href="http://ballofspray.com/vanillaforum/account.php?u=370"><strong>Officer Friendly</strong></a><font size="2" color="#aaaaaa"> </font></li>
    <li><font color="#aaaaaa"><span><font size="1">CommentTime</font></span><font size="2">14 hours ago </font></font></li>
    </ul>
    <span><font size="1" color="#aaaaaa">  </font></span>
    </div>
    <div class="CommentBody">
    Rodger, good comments and observations.
    </div>
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    </div>
    <div class="CommentBody">
    Thanks. At the risk of being arrested, could you leave the "d" out of my name please <img src="/vanillaforum/js/tinymce/jscripts/tiny_mce/plugins/emotions/images/smiley-wink.gif" border="0" alt="Wink" title="Wink" />
    </div>
    Roger B. Clark - Okeeheelee skier. Senior driver, Senior Judge
  • RogerRoger Posts: 1,564 Mega Baller
    edited April 2010
    <p>
    Richard, in defense of the person that brought the MC in, this was a last minute thing. The promo guy who lives there has a properly set up boat which drives great (drove it in the last couple of tournaments there last year), but for some reason his boat was not available for this tournament. I do not know where the boat they brought in came from or who, if anyone, set it up.
    </p>
    <p>
    I believe the Chief Driver (Gordon West) got it at the last minute. I know for sure that if Gordon had been able to take the time to set it up, it would have been perfect. I think there just wasn't any (time).
    </p>
    Roger B. Clark - Okeeheelee skier. Senior driver, Senior Judge
  • HO 410HO 410 Posts: 351 Baller
    edited April 2010
    Skibug: I know Centurion used to put the adhesive graphics on before shooting the gelcoat: I haven't seen one in years, I don't know if they still do. While I prefer the relief that some of the graphics give, I'll take flat, two dimensions any day if that means I never have to explain why a once proud boat has become a Nastercraft or a MalibI
    Nikon D80, 50mm f 1.8, Tokina 12-24mm... Sorry, wrong forum. Josh T.
  • Old MS AccoutOld MS Accout Posts: 2,114 Baller
    I think Horton just spit his coffee out of his mouth when he was reading about the independant boat test. Someone check his pulse.  
  • RogerRoger Posts: 1,564 Mega Baller
    MS, now that's funny!
    Roger B. Clark - Okeeheelee skier. Senior driver, Senior Judge
  • jdarwinjdarwin Posts: 1,379 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Roger - throw 50lbs in the nose of the LXI and 197 and the tracking will improve greatly.  The 2010 197 I drove in a 3-event tournament had very little rudder torque.  So, without modifying the rudder, we threw 50lb weight in the front and it made life much better.  With a minimal rudder adjustment, it would have been perfect.
    Joe Darwin
  • RogerRoger Posts: 1,564 Mega Baller
    I can't say how much was in there, but there was in fact a weight in both boats. I don't think there was one in the Nautuque (and I don't think it needs one).
    Roger B. Clark - Okeeheelee skier. Senior driver, Senior Judge
  • Old MS AccoutOld MS Accout Posts: 2,114 Baller
    <p>
    Roger,
    </p>
    <p>
    Horton aged himself into mens 5 after his 2 go arounds with the ski tests. I would love to see him do a boat test.  
    </p>
  • robscholl-OFrobscholl-OF Posts: 287 Baller
    <p>
    Roger,
    </p>
    <p>
    Sorry about the "d" I have a Rodger on my crew and just use to writing it.  No worry about being arrested, I screwed it up......OF 
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  • greggreg Posts: 38 Baller
    Roger, I am sorry to hear that you didn't think that my boat was "well set up".  I am quite pleased with this boat the way I have it and Gordon as well has been over to my place and has driven/skied this boat on many occasions with comments that it is perfect.  I don't think that Gordon would have asked to use this boat had he not felt that it was tournament ready.  Regards, Greg Chapman
    Greg Chapman
  • RogerRoger Posts: 1,564 Mega Baller
    edited April 2010
    <p>
    Greg, no reflection on you (didn't even know whos boat it was). Both John and I felt the rudder torque was a little light. We were both able to drive the boat straight but felt it took a bit more wheel input than it might have with more torque. As you might expect, the amount of torque is a somewhat personal thing and might be perfect for you. I can say however, that driving similar skiers with Paul Spensor's (identical) boat takes less wheel input than your boat did and the only difference I can see is his has a bit more torque than yours does. If Gordon thinks it's perfect, that's good enough for me. This thread was about comparing the three hulls, not dissing anyone's boat. As I said earliar in the thread, all three boats are terrific and we are beginning to split hairs here on which is best...
    </p>
    <p>
     
    </p>
    Roger B. Clark - Okeeheelee skier. Senior driver, Senior Judge
  • DirtDirt Posts: 1,608 Open or 55K Rated Skier
    <p>
    I don't know anyone involved but it is interesting how PC our world has become. Roger posted this information as a service to us all and did it with the best of intentions. He was merely sharing his opinion as to how the boats drove at a tournament. I enjoyed reading the posting and do not have access to all of these boats. It was good information. I thought he was careful not to attack anyone or any particular boat.
    </p>
    <p>
    His reward for taking the time to write the post and evaluate the boats is someone getting upset or their feelings hurt. It is a boat. It is his opinion. You can agree to disagree. You can have different preferences in how much load you like in the steering. 
    </p>
    <p>
    I bet this is why the boat tests/ski tests are such a joke now.
    </p>
    <p>
    This is just my opinion. I don't intend to make anyone angry. If I do, I am sorry you are so sensitive.
    </p>
    I learned everything I know not to do from Horton
  • Ed_JohnsonEd_Johnson Posts: 2,130
    Roger is right that the weight in the nose of the LXi and 197 will aid tracking. The reason it is not necessary in the SN200 is that the Hydro-Gate will drive the nose down in the Slalom position. If you pull the lever back and open the Hydro-Gate, it will gain around 2mph and 200rpm, and the nose will rise.
    Special Thanks to Performance Ski and Surf and the Denali Adam's !!!
  • RichardDoaneRichardDoane Posts: 4,243 Mega Baller
    jdarwin - when you add weight to the nose of a boat, is it sandbags, lead shot in a gas can, or ??? 
    BallOfSpray Pacific Northwest Vice President of Event Management, aka "Zappy"
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 3,937 Infinite Pandas
    <p>
    How about a tower to weight the front?
    </p>
    <p>
    Eric
    </p>
  • skibugskibug Posts: 2,043
    <p>
    I have an 09' MC 197 TT and was helped with the set up by some senior drivers.  We put 35 lbs under each of the bow seats; so a total of 70 lbs.  It does make a difference between keeping the 70 lbs as one weight and putting it directly centered in the nose as opposed to splitting it and positioning it under the seats which is not the most forward position in the boat.  The split weight and further aft position (under the bow seats vs. all the way forward in the nose) is the better option (at least for my boat). It distributes the weight on each side of the keels and positions the weight closer to the center (stern to bow) of the boat.
    </p>
    Bob Grizzi
  • Old MS AccoutOld MS Accout Posts: 2,114 Baller
    <p>
    Eric,
    </p>
    <p>
    You love to stir it up.  
    </p>
  • RichardDoaneRichardDoane Posts: 4,243 Mega Baller
    <p>
    Eric - you should add some great big speakers on that tower and a fully loaded wakeboard rack to further add to the imbalance
    </p>
    BallOfSpray Pacific Northwest Vice President of Event Management, aka "Zappy"
  • DWDW Posts: 2,060 Mega Baller
    Add all that "stuff" to the tower and presto, the aero drag will push the tail of the boat back down in the water!  Adding ballast is the lazy way to accomplish the objective, removing rear weight would be the ideal way to go.  In racing we always look at $/# as the priority matrix on what to do.  Things such as rear seat removal, low fuel are obvious, but you could look at a lightweight platform (carbon fiber), lightweight rudder access panel, make sure the shower motor & controls are up front, or even a gun drilled prop shaft, lightweight materials for the rudder. . . I have pulled about 300 lbs out of my boat and it is noticible.  The other option and touched upon in the thread would be some hull modifications to create rear lift, the CC example is a perfect one that is even adjustable, basically an adjustable gurney flap to change lift characteristics.
  • bmiller3536bmiller3536 Posts: 298 Baller
    <p>
    A friend had an Infinity, first thing I noticed was the gas tank was in the front of the boat? I thought that was odd and never thought about it much. Why haven't other boat manufacturers moved their gas tanks to the front if it is ideal for tracking to have more weight up front and less in the rear?
    </p>
    Brad Miller
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