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Wakeboarding with a 24' fast fisherman.

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Joined: 10 Nov 2011
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Nov 10, 2011 12:43 pm    Post subject: Wakeboarding with a 24' fast fisherman. Reply with quote

Hi. My boy's interested in wakeboarding, which will often be behind the boat we got - which is a 24' centre console fast fisherman ( Sailfish 2360, like a Boston Whaler Outrage but lighter) with 2 x 150 outboards. I know nothing about wakeboarding, and he's done just enough to know he likes it, so we'd appreciate some help on where to get started. I'm told the boat accelerates quick enough, and it's easily fast enough. This will be on the sea, fairly flat water with a small swell and usually offshore winds.

Is there any particular style of wakeboarding more suited to this kind of boat, and/or any style of board should suit that best?

He's 6'1" ,about 70 kg, and still filling out - will any particular board size suit him better for getting started?

How about the rig? The boat already has transom tow eyes, I think we can fit a ski height tow pylon, and I've heard of people towing from the top of reinforced T tops, which is more than 8' off the water on this boat. What do you recommend?

Finally, are there any tricks with engine tilt or trim tabs to get the best wake?

Thanks, Max
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Joined: 16 Jun 2009
Posts: 2310
City: St Pete.

PostPosted: Nov 10, 2011 2:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

maxr, I learned to ride behind fishing boats myself back in the day (flats-boats, even worse for wakeboarding). They're definitely not ideal but at least he'll be getting up and riding around a bit and out on the water, which is better than nothing. There are a lot of fundamental skills to get down before having to worry too much about the perfect boat. I rode forever on the transom tow spots and could do some basic tricks including a couple of flips like that.

Having a low tow point will be limiting once he gets comfortable enough riding around to try and jump the wake. Basically think "the higher the tow point, the easier it will be to go higher". Mastercraft actually makes a salt-water edition (or did) wakeboard boat with a center console so it could double as a fishing boat where the tow-point was off the t-top. If you can reinforce it safely (by a professional) and have a tow-point installed up top, that might be the best course of action.

As for the wake and trim tabs, just try to play around with it until you get it right. Ideally you want the wake to start curling in to whitewash just behind where the rider is at so the wake is a smooth ramp at the distance he's riding at (the distance depends on the speed he's comfortable with but I'd suggest starting with a rope at about 55' or 60'). Also, make sure the rope is a non-stretch ski rope. If you have a rope from something like a tube that can cause a lot of difficulty as it will stretch and retract depending on the tension that's on it, which is no good.

Open sea riding is very tough and if it's choppy, he'll get tired in just a few minutes simply trying to hang on even in what seems like a light chop in the boat. It'll be difficult and frustrating to do anything so it'd be best to wait for very calm days for wakeboarding and go tubing or fishing on the choppy ones (mornings are always excellent before the winds kick up).

As far as boards go, You can get away with quite a few sizes since your son is tall/skinny. If you want something that will last a long time while he fills-out and likely gains weight, I'd recommend a board in the 138-141cm long range. It's a little bigger board than he needs for his weight but should be great for that height. Plus it will support him for a long time when he's gaining weight (I'm 6'4", 215lbs and ride a 142). I also recommend not getting a cheap brand board, there's plenty of good deals on older model wakeboards that are still nice or on combo deals online (includes board and bindings). A basic rule of thumb is, avoid brands you commonly see in boating stores. Stay away from brands like World Industries, HO, Hydroslide and look for brands like Hyperlite, Liquid Force, CWB, Ronix, and Slingshot.

Another option to check out is wakeskating. I ended up switching to that myself back in the early days of it and almost rode that exclusively for about 3 years (had been wakeboarding a few years before that). That way you don't have to worry about modifying the boat or about the wake as much and it's a bit cheaper to get started (a decent board will be about $150 and there's no boots to worry about). The learning-curve is arguably a bit steeper and it can be slow going, but it's a lot of fun if your son wants to just be out on the water.

Wow, I think I covered everything, haha. If you have any specific questions or I missed something let me know!
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Joined: 10 Nov 2011
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PostPosted: Nov 10, 2011 4:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks very much for all that info, Gnarshredd, that's really helpful.

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