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Old 10-23-2009, 12:10 PM   #1
WaveDancer
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Question Thunderjet Offshore boats

Does anyone here have any experience with the TJ Offshore model boats?

I have a friend that is looking at the offshore models and I am hoping to find an owner or two to pick their brains.

Any TJ OS owners out there?

Thanks in advance.

WD.

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Old 10-23-2009, 01:16 PM   #2
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

I rode on and have driven two different ones this year, a 21' hardtop and a 20' rag, both are less than 2 years old and we hit the ocean like it was the snake river, HARD, both boats performed very well.

Get the shock absorber seats if you can.

the 21' came with 68 gal fuel capacity which we were good at 50 miles out.

The 20' came with a 48 gal and my buddy plumbed in a plastic 12 gallon under each seat for a total of 72 so we traveled one day about 140 miles round trip with better than a third left.

The 39" high sides and offshore bracket make you feel pretty good on the tuna grounds.

These boats do the job for all fish in the NW
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Old 10-23-2009, 01:24 PM   #3
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

Seems odd (to me anyways) that an offshore boat would have an open bow, if that's what's shown in the picture.

A self bailiing deck would be another thing to strongly consider.

But to each their own. Open bows can be plenty safe on the right day and when your feeling lucky.

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Old 10-23-2009, 01:43 PM   #4
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

You definitely have to pick your days in a 20-21 foot boat but the O/S models are not uncomfortable in the ocean. The first time we had it out it turned nasty (1 on 4 turned to 3 on 6 at least) and we got home safe. No way would I have gone out in that forecast but it handled it well. The boat rode high enough that we never took any water over the bow.

If you and your friend want a ride drop me a PM and we'll go chase some coho or nooks.
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Old 10-23-2009, 02:42 PM   #5
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

It looks to me like the boat has a recessed bow, about 6" or 8" deep with 1' or 1 1/2" scuppers. Recessed bows are a lot safer than an open bow. They are limited to the amount of water they will take on and have a bulk head to prevent the water from entering the cabin.
On my last boat, an aluminum, it had the O/S bracket that was part of the hull, recessed bow and 21' (not including the O/S bracket). It handled well OS and got great mileage. Definitely had to pick my days carefully as the rougher it got the harder I hit. I consider cushion ride seats a must as you tend to ride forward at the helm on the O/S aluminums. The TJ has more free board which is a nice feature.

Good Luck
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Old 10-23-2009, 02:56 PM   #6
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

http://www.thunderjet.com/boat-offsh...hore_2532.html

I believe he was referring to their OFFSHORE pilothouse model... not the OB BRACKETT Boats.

They havnt made very many of them...

IMHO from having viewed them in GREAT detail.. there are better blue water boats...Much better...
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Old 10-23-2009, 02:59 PM   #7
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

That's a BIG difference in boats.
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Old 10-23-2009, 03:16 PM   #8
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

Quote:
Originally Posted by Grass Hopper View Post
http://www.thunderjet.com/boat-offsh...hore_2532.html

I believe he was referring to their OFFSHORE pilothouse model... not the OB BRACKETT Boats.

They havnt made very many of them...

IMHO from having viewed them in GREAT detail.. there are better blue water boats...Much better...

Yea, that is a big difference. My boat is a TJ "Luxor O/B Offshore" model. Thats the name on the hull.

http://www.thunderjet.com/boat-offsh...fshore_20.html

I sure wish I could afford a pilot house!
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Old 10-23-2009, 03:45 PM   #9
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Arrow Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

Quote:
Originally Posted by Grass Hopper View Post
http://www.thunderjet.com/boat-offsh...hore_2532.html

I believe he was referring to their OFFSHORE pilothouse model... not the OB BRACKETT Boats.

They haven't made very many of them...

IMHO from having viewed them in GREAT detail.. there are better blue water boats...Much better...

You are quite correct Grass Hopper, my buddy is looking at the pilot house models, the 26' model I believe.

Feel free to suggest what you think is a much better blue water METAL boat as my friend is open to whatever is best, but he is pretty set on getting a metal boat.

Thanks for your input.

WD.
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Old 10-23-2009, 04:04 PM   #10
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

Quote:
Originally Posted by WaveDancer View Post
You are quite correct Grass Hopper, my buddy is looking at the pilot house models, the 26' model I believe.

Feel free to suggest what you think is a much better blue water METAL boat as my friend is open to whatever is best, but he is pretty set on getting a metal boat.

Thanks for your input.

WD.
One of the first things I look at when considering a boat's "ocean worthiness" is the shape of the bow when viewed from either side... The higher the bow, the more volume of air there is to buoy things up when you stuff the front end in a swell. I was never too great at explaining this, but if you look at the cross-sectional area of the bow (just after the taper straightens out into the sides of the boat) it should be much greater than the area of the transom to provide forward buoyancy.

Looking at these (and most other river boats where the builder slapped an "offshore" cabin on them) the hull cross section appears the same from stern forward, and wouldn't appear to provide the extra volume.

My other bit of opinion (since it was asked for) is that if 3 on 6 isn't a forecast you'd go out in to begin with, you probably don't belong out of sight of land in the first place...

As far as suggesting other makes/models, that's awfully tough to do unless there's a specific price range the buyer is shopping in... I would always recommend a SeaWolf, but that's a whole different budgetary animal than the TJ boats being discussed here!

-Case
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Old 10-23-2009, 05:23 PM   #11
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

I can't say I have experience with the O/S model, but I was just in Clarkston last week, taking my 92 T/J up the Snake grabbing a few steelies. Normally, T/J has _tons_ of boats on their lot. This time they had three. Looks like the recession is hitting them hard -- too many traditional sled manufacturers right now.

Nonetheless, the one boat they had positioned for best viewing was a big ~26' O/S model. It looked really nice, and from what I can see they are probably trying to drum up this type of business -- being that the traditional jet boat business is likely in the tank right now.
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Old 10-23-2009, 06:06 PM   #12
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

"My other bit of opinion (since it was asked for) is that if 3 on 6 isn't a forecast you'd go out in to begin with, you probably don't belong out of sight of land in the first place... "

Actually, your opinion was not asked for in this instance to be quite frank. This was MP's response to WaveDancer and it didn't even concern the model in question.

WD, if your friend is open to looking at other alum. boats then have him look at builders whose roots come from building ocean going boats not river to ocean imo. Like a Seawolf or Armstrong for example. I'd even take a look at Almar (Sounder) by NR too or Lee Shore. Some big price differences of the 4 mentioned as well.
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Old 10-23-2009, 08:39 PM   #13
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

Only one question. In spite of the name the manufacture gives the boat. True off shore design encompasses the ability to handle chop, a deep v entry. That being the case why would the boat builder put "truck seats" (those springy things) in a offshore product? Just wondering...don't see them on Grady Whites, Sea Ray, Carver, Luhrs, Donzi, Sea Swirl. Also why can't you stand up at the helm while docking and other tight maneuvering?
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Old 10-23-2009, 11:11 PM   #14
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

Quote:
Originally Posted by backlash442 View Post
"My other bit of opinion (since it was asked for) is that if 3 on 6 isn't a forecast you'd go out in to begin with, you probably don't belong out of sight of land in the first place... "

Actually, your opinion was not asked for in this instance to be quite frank. This was MP's response to WaveDancer and it didn't even concern the model in question.

WD, if your friend is open to looking at other alum. boats then have him look at builders whose roots come from building ocean going boats not river to ocean imo. Like a Seawolf or Armstrong for example. I'd even take a look at Almar (Sounder) by NR too or Lee Shore. Some big price differences of the 4 mentioned as well.
Good point that that particular bit of my opinion wasn't asked for. It's still my opinion that a 3 on 6 forecast is such a common one that if you don't plan on "common" conditions don't go there. Also a good point about builders rooted in ocean design. Aren't discussion boards great? Even when specific opinions aren't solicited, we can still have frank discussions about them.

- Case
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Old 10-23-2009, 11:26 PM   #15
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

TJ used to have a video on there site when this model came out. I believe it was a 26' with twin 140's. Anyhow, in the video the boat did a wide turn and drove over its wake and it seemed to bounce a bit. I would have expected a boat of that size/weight to plow through the wake or am I off base ?
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:34 AM   #16
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

Quote:
Originally Posted by CanCanCase View Post
Good point that that particular bit of my opinion wasn't asked for. It's still my opinion that a 3 on 6 forecast is such a common one that if you don't plan on "common" conditions don't go there.

- Case
It's ridiculous to suggest that anyone that doesn't want to launch on a 3 and 6 forcast "probably doesn't belong out of sight of land in the first place".
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:45 AM   #17
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

When it gets rough you need to slow down, when you launch a heavy deep v in the air its still going to bump on the landing. Ask the dory fisherman how fast they run in a heavy chop.

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Old 10-24-2009, 09:38 AM   #18
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

You're certainly entitled to that opinion, just as I'm entitled to mine that little boats or inexperienced boaters don't belong on the open ocean under most any forecast. As has been pointed out very subtly earlier in the thread, this topic is not about who agrees (or not) with my opinion.

The topic at hand is whether the ThunderJet model labeled "Off Shore" is a good design for serious offshore use. My opinion is no. Anyone operating that boat would have to choose their conditions VERY carefully. A "3 on 6" forecast is pretty common for offshore Pacific waters. That gets us back to my opinion that if a guy wanted to go boating offshore, a boat which would not be suitable to leave the dock with a 3 on 6 forecast might be a crummy choice.

-Case

Quote:
Originally Posted by Salmonator View Post
It's ridiculous to suggest that anyone that doesn't want to launch on a 3 and 6 forcast "probably doesn't belong out of sight of land in the first place".
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Old 10-24-2009, 10:12 AM   #19
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

Quote:
Originally Posted by CanCanCase View Post
You're certainly entitled to that opinion, just as I'm entitled to mine that little boats or inexperienced boaters don't belong on the open ocean under most any forecast. As has been pointed out very subtly earlier in the thread, this topic is not about who agrees (or not) with my opinion.

The topic at hand is whether the ThunderJet model labeled "Off Shore" is a good design for serious offshore use. My opinion is no. Anyone operating that boat would have to choose their conditions VERY carefully. A "3 on 6" forecast is pretty common for offshore Pacific waters. That gets us back to my opinion that if a guy wanted to go boating offshore, a boat which would not be suitable to leave the dock with a 3 on 6 forecast might be a crummy choice.

-Case
I don't believe that he was doubting the abilities of the boat to handle 3 and 6. Now whether or not he "WANTS" to launch in a 3 and 6 forcast is an entirely different question. There are plenty of people on this board that fish offshore in what you would consider a little boat and I'd say that most have plenty of business fishing beyond sight of land
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Old 10-24-2009, 11:28 AM   #20
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

Quote:
Originally Posted by foxer View Post
TJ used to have a video on there site when this model came out. I believe it was a 26' with twin 140's. Anyhow, in the video the boat did a wide turn and drove over its wake and it seemed to bounce a bit. I would have expected a boat of that size/weight to plow through the wake or am I off base ?
depends on the trim if trimmed down shouldn't bounce but probably had it trimmed up for speed and show of jump.

-I have smaller 17.5 tj with offshore bracket 16 degree hull when trimmed down runs smooth in a chop, I don't have suspension seats. only loose a few mph with full trim down.
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Old 10-24-2009, 01:33 PM   #21
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

Picking the right day to venture out as well as taking into consideration tides. Still, things can and will change dramtically, catching the unwary by surprise. Should this happen and your running back to safe port and the seas are building. With a quartering following sea and green water coming over the side....is your deck scuppered? Or are you solely dependant on tiny electric motor connected to a pump to keep you bouyant? Self bailing deck versus little electric motor in a rough and salty environment. Do the math and carefully consider the risk.

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Old 10-25-2009, 09:10 AM   #22
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

Been looking at Boats lately again myself, What I like about the TJ OS models is the deep sides they are using 40"-Alexis, 38"-Luxor, they are deepest sides in their class, altho some obviously won't venture out in a 3 & 6 with anything less than a 30' Boat, others like myself have been out plenty of times in marginal conditions, in a very small Boat, so by comparison the TJ OS would be a great improvement to what I'm used to, it's all relative to what your used to, your comfort level, size Boat...ect, & weather or not the CG will let you out, last time I checked, other than Yourself, the CG is the only ones that can tell you go, or no go, everybody has to decide what their comfort level is, & pick you Crew with a similar comfort level, with that said, I'm currently looking at 22' hardtop OS Boats, & TJ are on the list of pontential up-grades, we all would like to go Bigger, but what can you afford, Tow, Store, Maintain...ect, it's allways a compromise, for me it's 3' itis at this time.
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Old 10-25-2009, 03:20 PM   #23
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

I've had a lot of boats, and I had a TJ sled for awhile. Nice boat, tough as nails, beautiful welds, but I don't like their salty incarnation at all. I would keep looking, lots of deals out there right now...
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Old 10-26-2009, 04:11 AM   #24
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

The BEST is pretty subjective but a production boat definitely isn't going to come anywhere close to being the best. It may be the best bang for your buck, but surely not the best boat.

There are a still a couple of great aluminum builders around. I don't know who is the best, but I would put Coastal Craft pretty high on the list. They could build you a loaded, 26 foot aluminum boat to your exact specifications with a pair of Volvo D4 engines for around 300k. You could probably call that the best without getting into too many arguments.

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Old 10-26-2009, 02:03 PM   #25
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Default Re: Thunderjet Offshore boats

For what it is worth I'll chime in. I took one of the first Duckworth Pacific Pro models to Alaska in 1997 and chartered out of Deep Creek. Most of the boats up there were aluminum. Launching and retrieving off the beach can be hard on plastic boats.

Helm forward was part of the ride problem. The skipper and front passenger had a hell of a ride while the ones aft had it quite smooth.

I keep hearing about open bow configurations being a problem. In 7 years I don't recall one incident of burying the nose and we came in under some pretty tight conditions a few times. River boats are built to push the bow high over waves. But that also decreases the ride. I had 3 inch scuppers in the bow that got rid of any water that did get in quickly.

Air ride seats were a godsend for my back but had the tendency to weaken the hull directly under the seat. After two weld jobs by Norvelle, he advised me either get rid of the seats or back off the throttle. I did both.

We also gussetted the outboard platform for a more rigid ride.

The boat, now 12 years old has had a new skin over the bottom, new floorboards. Other than that it still makes trips to the Halibut grounds here with a new owner.

Down here I'd definitely go for the deep V offshore glass boats. I know this from owning two Sea Rays.
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