If I was only going to fish the columbia and most of the other rivers in Oregon :wink: I would go with the prop. less money and I'm told that you get more bang for your buck with your prop vs. jet drive. I/O jets look pretty cool though
Pumps have their place, but I'm a prop guy all the way. I like the performance and efficiency. I've thought about getting a jet boat, but I don't run enough small rivers to justify the 30% horsepower loss. I don't steelhead fish much, and I'm content chasing salmon on the big rivers.
I know a lot of people like pumps for duck hunting, but I don't. I've spent too much time and energy cleaning leaves, sticks and mud out of other people's pumps during a hunt. :depressed:
If you gotta have both, the jack plate is the way to go if you can't afford two boats.
I have to say I like a pump. I have had a couple of prop boats and prefer my inboard pump. Just as with engine size you can never have enough power. With a pump there is not much water that you can't run! With the pump I can do what most props can do and a whole bunch more. So now I don't have a prop wishing I had a pump. Not only that I have a kicker with a prop. I have best of both worlds in my opinion. From big blue to the skinny waters of the river I can fish and hunt in good and bad weather. I love my pump!
You get the right set-up with a pump (3 stage)and you don't have the problems with debris. I duck hunt out of my inboard on the upper Willamette and back eddies also.
We spent almost a year and 1/2 trying to answer this same question ....
this is what we came up with!
We fish the bays/estuary 90% of the time, where a pump is not needed! Infact it can be a pain in the butt!!!!
We went with the 115 Merc 4 stroke, we were able to go with a smaller midrange 4 stroke, on the 23' open sled, if we had gone with a pump we'd have to go 200HP.. and lose all the advantagesof the four stroke.. unless we wanted to spend twice the $$$ and get the 4 stroke 200!
I fish the middle Rogue a bit in April and May and have no problems running it down uder 3K.. I am very careful, but it can be done..
I am looking into a hydralic lift for my for stroke.. next year which would allow me to raise on the fly and draft 8 inches... I'll let you know how it comes out!
Go with the prop! :grin:
I ad an opportunity to get a 2002 Merc 200HP OptiMax w. less than 40 hours this year for $5k.. and just could not bring myself to get rid of the 4 stroke!
I am very happy with my decision!
I love my pump but I'd get a prop if I get another boat. I run the Columbia (Bonneville to Astoria) and up the Willamette to Oregon City.
No real reason to have a pump. The props are much more efficient.
In Spring when the the water is full of logs and debris, the pump provides some peace of mind about running over/into something. In Summer, like right now...water is really low...pilings and sand bars pop up...saw one guy beached where I'd have run right over it...saw another guy with a dinged prop (hit a submerged piling)...so there are some advantages.
But...it's a prop on the next boat for how I use the boat...mostly in big water.
Boat I'm looking out with twin 115's gets 3.5mpg at 35 mph cruise vs. my 2 mpg. A single prop verson gets about 4mpg.
If you don't plan on running skinny water you can do well with a prop. Have to be much more careful when there is junk in the water. Better fuel economy. Much better in the ocean.
Best is an 18' open sled with a pump (tidewater bobber, Cowlitz boondogging, Lewis, Clack, etc.)and a windshield boat with full top and a prop(hardtop, if you can go there, for the Columbia, lower Willamette, bays and the ocean). Add a driftboat and you just about got it covered.
I reccommend a prop and a pump. I switch my 200 merc back and forth all the time. I have no jack plate only a bay kit extension. It is really easy for any one to do. The pump is held on with 4 bolts and the lower unit is held on with 6 bolts. The whole job is about 45 minutes from start to finish. The gas savings for me is enourmous with the prop, not to mention that you had better hold on. My boat will run at 44 mph with the pump and the prop is about 67mph.
I have only had pumps, however saying that, with my new 21' Supper Vee (Ya Baby), which has a 225Hp on it I am getting a prop lower unit with a Jack plate to switch between. From about the end of May through Sept I will run the prop and the rest of the year run the pump. The prop will really add more enjoyment to summer activities with the kids and not hinder my summer fishing. While the pump will allow me to run shallow water in tide water and the normal rivers gigs.
After all folks its just money, can't take it with ya, and life is like a drift boat trip its a one way trip, once ya pass the hole its gone...
Nookster, I gotta plastic windshield one just in case, $1700 worth.
I'm just not ready to put a bell on my rod tip and snooze all day yet or, just troll the engine and winch the fish in on some super synthetic fish rope!
Windshields, rodholders, bleccccck!
Of course when it's a tad nippy out there and the namby pamby crew is seepy weepy and wants their teddy bear and blanky, we can accomodate.
[ 07-08-2003, 10:27 PM: Message edited by: Tilla ]
Crabbait has it dialed.... 3 boats minimum.
Wouldn't give up my jet though, I miss the bigger ocean capable cruiser, but I have more fun, more opportunity, more 12 mo/yr fishing, and more fish with the jet.
I don't need speed (50 mph never caught me much)and I don't need to be on rough big water (can't catch much when your getting blown all around). (Ocean generally you can within reason.)
The guides use what?!? They at least have a jackplate pump/prop capability.
We won't even talk about windshields.