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View Full Version : Used ProStar or TriStar?


pwskicat
10-26-2007, 02:23 PM
Hello all -

This is my first post on this forum. I'm hoping to benefit from yr collective experience. I'm a rec slalom skier who is just getting into wakeboarding (mainly because it's easier on my 50 y/o body). I have a limited budget ($12K or less) and I'm shopping for a used MC.

Had my heart set on a '91 or later ProStar 190, but a creampuff '89 TriStar 19 just hit my local dealer at a very reasonable price. Can anyone enlighten me on the relative merits of these boats?

Also, I was told all MC built after '88 had no structural wood. True? Besides having some of the sweetest wakes I've ever skied, that's the main reason I want an MC. I just sold on old Ski Supreme that needed a new floor, and I don't want to buy another boat that may have floor problems down the road.

Thanks for yr help, PW

loeweb
10-26-2007, 02:55 PM
First off, welcome. Can't tell you much about the tristar, but can tell you that in '83 MC stopped using wood stringers. I personally own an
'88 190 and can't tell the wake difference between that and a '95 190 i ski behind frequently. I have been told that at shorter line lengths the older boat has more of a rooster tail, and a bigger "bump" but I can't tell, and probably will never be in a situation to tell. best of luck with whatever you purchase.

G-man
10-26-2007, 03:01 PM
I would get the Prostar but I'm a snob. I like the looks much better and the handling of the boat.

ShamrockIV
10-26-2007, 03:05 PM
Welcome!!!! I too am a Prostar fan too and would recommend it!!

jwchapman
10-26-2007, 03:21 PM
I've got an '88 TriStar 190 and it has been a great boat. A lot will depend on what you want to use it for and who all will be using it. I have a couple of kids and we often have friends out. It is great having the open bow - this was a criteria of ours as we bought the boat. The kids also like the integrated swim platform. It is not as pretty as the teak but it works pretty well.

I believe the TriStar is a little shorter and a little wider than the ProStar. The ride is a bit harsh in rough water, though that is common in all ski boats of that vintage. It also has a swivel passenger seat that can face forward if you wish as opposed to the rear facing bench observers seat. Storage is available under the front seat cushions and along the sides but is somewhat limited.

I was a competitive skier in college but now just ski and wakeboard for fun - this boat has been more than enough for me. The wake is not as narrow or as soft as the ProStar but is better than 95% of the other boats out there. The TriStar 190 has traking fins - the 220 does not.

Mine has the 351W Indmar engine. I have done basic maintenance, changed out the points to an electronic ignition kit and added the ACME 3-blace NC Prop. I also had to change out the starter and alternator due to an almost sinking (not the boat's fault - trapped in a boat house when the water came up over 7 feet in one day at my lake!). Other than that it has run perfectly.

I don't think you can go wrong either way. We've had our TriStar 6 years and it has been great.

Tourney Team 197
10-26-2007, 04:23 PM
Welcome PW! I would say go for a ProStar. $12K should get you into something pretty solid.

88 PS190
10-26-2007, 04:32 PM
Biggest downfall of prostars is interior space, biggest downfall of tristars is larger weight and small integraded platform.

pwskicat
10-26-2007, 05:01 PM
Great answers. Thank u all. I see a bunch of PS advocates and I totally understand why. jschapman's answer also makes a persuasive argument for the TS.

NADA boat guide says 89 TS weighs 2400 w/240hp and 92 PS190 weighs 2450 w/250hp. So I'm thinking performance would be pretty much apples to apples?

I gues the big diff is the hull design. I know 91 and newer PS has the spray relief pockets, which I find a plus. I'm sure this hull is a step forward from the TS. Does anyone know if the PS rides better than the in chop? This isn't a deal breaker, as I don't go out much when it's rough.

Here is how I will use whatever I buy:

1) A buddy and I slalom a couple mornings a week before work.
2) I'll probably throw a Skylon on it and learn (I hope) to jump the wake on a board (no inverted aerials!).
3) If I can generate a curl, I'll use it to wake surf. Just did this the first time a few weeks ago and it was fun! Of course it was behind an X10 with full ballast.
4) The occasional ride around the lake with friends. Though I mostly use the pontoon for cruising.

Thanx for yr help.

BrianM
10-26-2007, 06:41 PM
I gues the big diff is the hull design. I know 91 and newer PS has the spray relief pockets, which I find a plus. I'm sure this hull is a step forward from the TS.

Thanx for yr help. There was a bit of a spray relief pocket in the '91 but you are still going to get substantial sray. I have never skied behind a Tristar so I have no idea what the spray is like behind one of those. Arguably that vintage Prostar has the best wake MC has ever offered. You can't go wrong with that boat for sure.



Here is how I will use whatever I buy:

1) A buddy and I slalom a couple mornings a week before work.
2) I'll probably throw a Skylon on it and learn (I hope) to jump the wake on a board (no inverted aerials!).
3) If I can generate a curl, I'll use it to wake surf. Just did this the first time a few weeks ago and it was fun! Of course it was behind an X10 with full ballast.
4) The occasional ride around the lake with friends. Though I mostly use the pontoon for cruising.

Thanx for yr help.
You may want to consider a 92-95 205. Would push your budget a bit but it may fit your needs better.

Shameless plug...

Want to save some serious dough? I have a really nice '85 that would do everything but wakesurf for you and could be had for about half of your budget.

Jerseydave
10-26-2007, 10:46 PM
I'll kick in my $.02

I had a '94 prostar which is the same hull as a '91. Great slalom boat, fun for barefoot and a blast to drive! Never tried wakeboarding behind it though. Also have no experience with the tri-star.

IMHO, the prostar will out-perform the tristar every time. Better resale value too. One of the best slalom wakes, as someone else said.

Since your 50 and not wake jumping, either boat should be fine. If you get more serious with wakeboarding (will you??), go with your friend on his X-10. That wake will always be nicer than any tri-star.

tuffenuff
10-26-2007, 11:38 PM
My "88 ProStar is great for slalom, and with my pylon (and the right length on the rope) does the job for the recreational wakeboarder. As my kidz get better on the boards, I have a couple of fat saks to add, but as of yet (2 seasons) not been needed. I changed the prop to a 14x18 4 blade from the advise from JIM@BAWS and it's the peeerrrfect combo. I was shopping for an open bow before I got mine for the added seating but the family and friends are totally happy with my choice. Even if everybody has to take turns in the boat for his/her set.I'm in my mid 40's and I too enjoy the recreational skiing and wakeboarding that doesn't send me home at the end of the day looking for the ice paks. Welcome and good luck on your choice.

stuartmcnair
10-29-2007, 01:29 PM
I have an 89 PS 190. I have the ND Tower and it works great for wakeboarding. I paid around ten for my setup and it looks brand new with only 650 hours...

JohnE
10-29-2007, 08:12 PM
I actually sold my '89 prostar for an '88 tristar. Sounds like heresy, but the tristar fit our needs better. No comparison for slalom, we did as much or more "boating". The tristar is a really nice boat. Before I sold mine I put a 4 blade prop and it changed it's performance incredibly. Considering the year boat you are looking at and your needs, I'd base my decision on the condition of whatever comes along. The prostars might hold their value better, but I put my Tri up for sale in late February. Sold it to a friend a week later. But the ad's were in the local want ad for a while because I didn't cancel them, and in late April, I got a ton of calls. So the Tri will hold whatever you pay I'm guessing.

CHAR250R
10-30-2007, 11:49 AM
I have a 89 Tristar, and it has been good for me and the family. It is wider than a prostar. The prostar is basically a ski boat. The tristar is good for everything, but not the best in any given catagory. I don't ski enough to care about the wake the tristar makes. It's good for me and my boys. Take into concideration the condition of the boats you are looking at. That was most important to me. Service records can tell a great deal about the boats you are looking at. Either way you can't go wrong with a Mastercraft!!!