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Buckeye83

Upgrade from an 18’ to 20’ boat Questions

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Hey fellas. I have had 3 boats. A 14’ canoe, 17’ tracker and the 18XL Magnum. They all have been great upgrades from one to the next but I’m looking to either upgrade with a trade and a little boot $$$ or just a lateral move but I looking to get a 20’ boat. 

What I have noticed is it’s much easier to fish 2 guys up front in a TR20 than my Stratos 18XL. What is you opinions on the Triton TR20 and the Stratos 295/200 series? Is there more front deck space on one more than the other? Any thoughts/suggestions? 

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Never fished out of a Triton or the 295/200 series. It's been a 20ft Bullet, Dad's 201, a Z18 Nitro, or different low names. I would say depending on the year you are looking at would dictate that. I've seen and heard of new 18 footers fishing as good or better than 20 footers when it comes to 2 people fishing up front. Your shouldn't have any problem with any of the models you're looking at.

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I fished on a buddy’s TR20 a couple times. Seemed to ride decent, and had plenty of deck space for both people up front. 

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FWIW---I've heard the TR20 is a nice boat. Don't have any experiences to share but, I went to a 21 ft Skeeter last year.  I'm not trying to persuade you to Skeeter. Just talking about the length.  The longer boat  rides better, has more storage and is more stable.

 

 

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I've ridden in & fished from a lot of different platforms. From 14' jons to just about every brand of glass boat made. When it comes to stability, both fishing and riding, and space, there is no substitute for length. Ever. Anymore, most brands make a great boat & there's a plethora of good deals on slightly used boats out there if you're not wanting to go new. Either way, take the time to ride & explore every brand until you find the one that suits your needs best.

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5 minutes ago, Mountainman said:

......take the time to ride & explore every brand until you find the one that suits your needs best.

+1

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+2 what Andy said, especially length. It’s true the 18’ layouts are awesome nowadays, but stability and ride of the 20’+ is always gonna be better, especially in rough water. 

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 I have 2016 Triton 18 TRX that has a decent size front deck. You are more than welcome to go for a ride anytime.  

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I picked up my 4th Triton this past MON - another 21'er.  You will be pleased with the storage layout, the ride, and the quality of workmanship.  You won't be disappointed.  Fished out of (but never drove) a 20' Stratos.  A lil heavier than the Triton but overall performance was indiscernible.  Smooth in heavy water, smart deck layout.  About the same on top end speed.  Both are Earl Bentz hulls, btw.

You will have a ~small learning curve as you adjust to driving the bigger, more powerful 20' rig.  Chine walking will be an issue if you trim up too fast.  All a matter of practice and repetition.  A good day on the water fixes this easily.  The Tr20 is a mid-range performance boat.  It's designed for ~optimum top end speed while giving you stability and security in choppy water.  (The X-boats - Tr20X/Tr21X - were the squirrelly ones.  Designed for top end speed [my Tr 21X did 83.1 GPS].  They took a little extra time to get to know, learn the feel on.)  Do not think you'd have any major issues picking up on the feel for either of the options you list above.

When I made the move from an 18-6 to a 21'er I never looked back.  The extra room, extra power, extra range are all things you'll come to rely on in short order.

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I had a 18' G3 fiberglass boat.. upgraded to a Triton TRX20.. Sometimes I miss the smaller boat but not enough for me to regret my choice. Love the ride and especially the deck space on the 20'

Fished the cherokee tx with Pitchin Pigs . we both were on the front deck a few times without issues..

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25 minutes ago, NobbyNobbs said:

I had a 18' G3 fiberglass boat.. upgraded to a Triton TRX20.. Sometimes I miss the smaller boat but not enough for me to regret my choice. Love the ride and especially the deck space on the 20'

Fished the cherokee tx with Pitchin Pigs . we both were on the front deck a few times without issues..

Oh yeah the trx 20 had more than enough room on the front deck I'm looking at a 179 in the near future and I think two people up front shouldn't be a problem on it even. I've got a 17' nitro and don't have much of an issue parallel cranking with two people up front on it

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If you want a boat that you point in the direction you want to go and mash the gas without worry, buy a Skeeter. I had a ZX in the 20 foot and I've run the FX20 and both are great boats. They both fish great with 2 anglers up front. 

 

I will say this... you need to test what ever you buy. I went to an aluminum boat that's 19'10 and it fishes better than several 19 and 20 foot glass boats I've been in as far as space and stability. It's not fast and the ride isn't glass by any stretch of the imagination but it's stable when fishing. I fish 2 upfront all the time. It's more stable than several glass boats when moving around fishing and when boats get too close and you're on the trolling motor. There's nothing worse than not being able to stand when a boat wakes you while fishing.

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Awesome. Thank you all for the information. I am going to be looking at used boats, some where between 2002 to 2006 range. I will definitely won’t rule out looking at a Skeeter. Never have road in one and I think Andy is the first person I’ve known to own one 😀. I am limited on space. Have to be 24’ or less. What I have found is that equals a 20’ boat on a trailer with a break away tongue with the motor strapped in.  I will definitely take my time and test drive my options before I make a purchase. Thanks again fellas. 

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Depending on your budget, some of the Ranger’s in those years were legendary. 

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1 hour ago, SteveHTN said:

Depending on your budget, some of the Ranger’s in those years were legendary. 

Still looking around 20k for an 06 Z20 w/ 225. You might be able to find a steal though

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