Jeremy Roberts’ Boat Outlet in Mooresville is one of the largest Jon boat dealerships in the country.
In addition to fishing, a lot of Jon boats are used by deer and turkey hunter to access isolated hunting territory that can’t be reached by road. Every Southern sportsman knows what a Jon boat is, but ask someone where they got their name and most will start scratching their head. The Jon boat proved ideal for leisurely float trips on the White and Buffalo Rivers in the Ozarks. Aluminum Jon boats come in sizes from 10 feet to well over 20 feet with varying hull thicknesses and side heights. Trailering and maintenance are other factors Roberts said one should consider when buying any boat. For the diversified sportsmen who require a multiple-use boat, one will do well to consider an aluminum Jon boat of an appropriate size. With the rising popularity of today's advanced Personal Water Crafts, dealerships and service centers need the best in "portability" tools to get these units in and out with a timely turnaround. Some say the design came from Norway, others claim the Jon boat is simply a scaled-down flat boat that was so popular on the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers in the early 1800s. The economy got a boost from visiting fishermen from the East who wanted to experience the excellent trout fishing and beautiful scenery on these and other rivers. We have a lot of customers who are knowledgeable about what they need and we simply sell them what they ask for, but we have many who are not sure what they need for what they intend to do with the boat.


A lot of Jon boats are used by deer and turkey hunter to access isolated hunting territory that can’t be reached by road, also. This thickness is lighter than the .100 thicknesses and requires less horsepower and will go in shallower water. Roberts said one of their best sellers is the 16-foot long, 48-inch wide Jon boat equipped with a 20 h.p. One can pull a fairly large Jon with a small car that just wouldn’t handle a heavy fiberglass model.
One legend has a man named Jon cut the pointed bow off of a flat-bottom skiff and replaced it with a blunt or square bow. Guiding vacationers on float trips lasting a week or more offered new opportunities to residents of the economically-strapped region.
Those bass fishing in sheltered waters will tend to prefer less sidewall because the wind doesn’t blow them around as much.
For those who are a little rougher on a boat or use it for commercial purposes will want the .100 hull thickness," Roberts explained. The boat design became so popular everyone wanted a boat like Jon’s, thus the name "Jon’s boat" evolved to simply Jon boat or Johnboat.
Boat builders have a hard time keeping up with the demand for the ever-increasing Jon boat orders from their guide customers. Most manufacturers now offer a modified V-design softening the ride somewhat in choppy water, but the old, reliable flat-bottom design is still popular.


It is doubtful if the precise origin of the boat’s name can ever be verified, but most sportsmen could care less. Many who experienced a float trip wanted one of these flat-bottom, square-bow boats to take back home with them.
If you do puncture an aluminum hull, it will cost you less to repair it as compared to patching a fiberglass hull. They know they can count on it for everything from running trotlines to getting them to their duck blind. Soon the Ozark Jon boat could be seen in the rivers of different areas of the United States. Those wanting a little softer ride like those fishing on larger waters lean toward the modified V. The average sportsmen will probably not notice the difference in the stability in the modified V and the flat bottom, but the modified-V offers a noticeably softer ride in choppy water," Roberts said.



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