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Published 03.07.2015 | Author : admin | Category : Plywood Jon Boat Plans

Unless you’ve been hiding under a dock, you probably know that pontoon boats are in the middle of a straight-up, full-blown renaissance. Pontoon boats are an increasingly popular way to get out and enjoy the water with your friends and family. Thanks mainly to advances in pontoon tube design, new boatbuilding materials, innovations in outdoor fabrics, and lighter, more efficient outboard engines, pontoon boats are no longer the relatively slow, somewhat cumbersome “party barges” they’ve traditionally had a reputation for being.Today we see pontoon boats with as much as 900 horsepower strapped to the stern and top speeds in the 60s.
The most basic of pontoon boats start out with two relatively plain, round tubes that taper to a point at the forward end. Something you will discover, when it comes to pontoon boats, is that manufacturers will generally build one for you in any number of configurations and with all sorts of options and add-ons.
Your imagination is about the only limitation, when it comes to customizing a pontoon boat.
Pontoon boat builders use all sorts of tube engineering to get better performance out of their pontoon boats, such as keels, under-deck skins, elliptical-shaped tubes, and lifting strakes. This Premier pontoon boat has all of its systems integrated into an in-dash touchscreen unit, one of many electronics options available on pontoon boats. Though you will find a scattering of pontoon boats in coastal areas, they’re most commonly found on inland lakes, rivers, reservoirs, and the like. Yes, do the math and that’s 900 horsepower you see on the back of this Premier Dodici 310.
If you’ve got a need for speed, a pontoon with lots of horsepower on the stern might just be your ticket. The Manitou Xplode 23 SRS SHP is built for watersports such as skiing, tubing, and wake boarding. You can tow tubers, skiers, and wake boarders with just about any pontoon that has enough horsepower and some sort of towing pole or mount, but there’s a class of pontoons that are designed specifically for the tasks. The Bennington 2575 QCW is equipped to the nines, including a custom mahogany fencing scheme.
This Sun Tracker Fishin’ Barge 20 DLX has rod holder, livewells, fishing chairs, and more.
If your boating adventures have a bend toward the piscatorial, don’t for a second think that you’ll have any trouble finding a pontoon boat that suits your needs. It’d be wrong to compare this class of pontoon boats to station wagons, so maybe it’s better to think of them as the SUVs of the sea: they do a number of things well.
Like the Honda Civics or Toyota Corollas of the automotive world, some folks are looking for a solid, enjoyable pontoon that won’t drain their kids’ college funds.
There is a big bright spot in the marine industry at present, and I must admit I’m at a bit of a loss to explain it.
These boats are equipped like you would never have expected a couple of years ago, and they come with big outboards, too.
Now, granted, I haven’t driven all pontoon boats out there, so there might be a few that throw the driver a bone.
And a few years down the road — if you’re into pontoon boats — it will mean there will be more used pontoon boats on the market, and all of them will be equipped like no used pontoon boats have been before.
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In fact, the National Marine Manufacturers Association said at its latest International Boatbuilders Exhibition show that 2015 sales of pontoon boats were up nearly 48 percent for the year. Many also have interiors that look and feel as nice as the inside of a fine luxury automobile.
Generally speaking, it’s any sort of boat with a large, flat deck that’s mounted atop two or more metal tubes called pontoons. Knowing the right questions to ask about a pontoon boat’s components can prevent headaches down the road. Most builders use varying grades and thicknesses of plywood covered with carpet or vinyl flooring materials.
And if that wasn’t confusing enough, there’s generally dozens of different fabric, upholstery, floor covering, and graphics packages to consider. These special tube “add-ons” not only improve performance—especially in turns—but also provide additional buoyancy, which means larger engines can be fitted, upping your speed game. But, if you’re a tech nerd, there are plenty of builders who have options such as integrated touch panel control systems, chartplotters, and other electronic gizmos to keep you happy.Stereos are also a big deal on pontoon boats, in case you didn’t know. And their owners use them for all sorts of different activities, from watersports to fishing and everything in between. They often have metal sport arches with towline mounts, brackets for boards and skis, and splashy graphics and interior schemes.The Aqua Patio AP 250 XP is one such watersports speed demon, equipped with a 350-horsepower Yamaha F350 four-stroke outboard. Think sumptuous, buttery upholstery and seating arrangements so comfortable it feels as if you’re lying on a cloud. In fact, these boats are great for fishing, with lots of deck space for livewells, fishing rods, and other tackle. The good news is there are plenty of models to choose from, when it comes to buying a pontoon on a budget.
Two companies previous uninterested in building pontoons have recently introduced entire model lines of their own. It’s admirable what these two companies have added to what was once a fairly primitive market segment. Right now, it means that whatever those aging baby boomers used to drive around every summer is coming onto the market.
They can carve a turn, too, with performance pontoon “tube” packages that allow them to corner as well as many conventional fiberglass-hulled boats.But what if you’ve never considered a pontoon boat?
Boats with three pontoons are sometimes called “tri-toons.” These pontoons—or “tubes” for short—contain a lot of reserve buoyancy and allow designers to create massive deck plans fitted with all sorts of accommodations, such as expansive lounge areas, stand-up bars, and sun pads. Aluminum “fencing” and side panels come in next around the perimeter of the deck before seats, lounges, helm unit, and other interior components and mechanical and electrical systems are added. One builder we looked at offers 18 different stereo and speaker combinations on each of its pontoons. Let’s take a look at some of the various types of pontoons you’ll encounter and what they’re designed to do.
And, with the right performance pontoon package as discussed above, you’ll be carving turns at thrilling speeds.Consider the Premier Dodici 310 or the Bennington 30 Club Twin for starters.
It’s also got a watersports tower, under-deck board stowage, and an overall sporty appearance that looks great going 60 MPH across the water.
Cobalt has debuted the Marker One series of pontoon boats and Larson Boat Group has introduced its Escape line. The only explanation I have for the segment’s newfound popularity is the graying of America. That means runabouts, ski boats, wakeboard boats, deck boats, and cruisers are all in play as boating boomers adopt a new lifestyle. Better tube design has also allowed builders to put ever-increasing amounts of horsepower on the stern.


Atop these tubes is where manufacturers weld deck support channels and cross beams—the support structures to which the pontoon’s deck will be mounted. Engine(s) are the icing on the cake before the pontoon rolls off the factory floor.In addition to inquiring about warranties that cover tubes, deck, and other components, it’s definitely worth doing your research and asking plenty of questions about construction methods and materials. The good thing is that most manufacturers have websites where you can build and price your pontoon just the way you want it, from the Bimini top down to the accent graphics, in virtual reality.Engines—Almost every pontoon model available, from 14 to 30 feet, comes with a standard engine that almost anyone would find underwhelming.
The Dodici has three—yes three—300-horsepower Evinrude E-TEC two-stroke outboards and a top end of 60 MPH. According to the American Association of Retired Persons, about 8,000 people a day turn 65 years old. So maybe these thousands of boaters are now content to putter around the lake, pulling young grandchildren on a tube.
These support channels are what give a pontoon its rigidity, a key component in the ride and feel of a pontoon boat.
Questions such as, “How do you waterproof and treat the deck?” or “How are the support structure and tubes engineered?” are good ones to ask or research on your own. Or maybe you want a double-decker, twin-engine pontoon with a waterslide and joystick docking. This means most folks end up opting for a larger, more powerful power plant or power plants. While some of these packages might seem tacky, many actually increase the usability of the boat during low light periods, lighting up cup holders and strategic deck areas. And make sure to read Can a Pontoon Boat Be a Serious Fishing Boat? This article will point out the ups and downs of fishing-dedicated pontoons, and how well they serve their purpose. Well our aim here is to give you enough of a foundation in pontoon boat basics that you can wisely research, choose, and then find the right pontoon boat for you—or maybe decide if a different type of boat is a better bet for your style of boating.Read on and we’ll discuss the ins and outs of this fun, relaxing, yet exciting class of boats. The better the materials, craftsmanship, and engineering are, the better—and longer lasting—the pontoon boat will be.
While these options can send a 24-footer with a base price of $20,000 quickly into the stratosphere, it’s a good idea to know which ones you’ll want and make the most use of. Consider how fast you really want to go, how much fuel you can afford to burn, and what you’ll be using the pontoon boat for. The Bennington Club twin has twin 300-horsepower Yamaha F300s, 300 square feet of deck space, and a 50 MPH top end. I want it to be rewarding to drive, but every pontoon I’ve driven is about as composed and wayward as a clumsy puppy on a long leash, especially if it lacked power.
Most outboard manufacturers have performance and fuel consumption bulletins available for many of the new boats that use their engines, so it’s worth doing some research on their web sites, too. Aft of the helm is a comfortable captain's chair sink basin, cutting board, cup holders, and drawer storage beneath the seat. Analyzing this data will give you a general idea of the size engine you’ll want on your pontoon.Also, remember that choosing an outboard for a pontoon is somewhat different than it is with other boats. And if finding the fastest of the fast is in your nature, read about 5 Rocket-Fast Pontoon Boats. Some engines are specifically designed for pontoons, and in other cases, special propellers or gear ratios are in order. Below deck the salon has sleeping accommodations for four and features a convertible dinette with a teak table and handcrafted brass marlin inlay.



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