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View Full Version : Open vs closed bow (190 vs 205) thoughts?


piper_chuck
12-07-2009, 04:49 PM
Hi everyone. I'm new here and hopefully, new to MasterCraft soon...

I'm faced with a bit of a dilema and could use some thoughts.

To begin, here's the background. I've been boating and waterskiing since I was a wee lad. I'm significantly older now and have no visions of skiing at any type of competitive level, but still enjoy carving out turns on glassy water. We've recently bought a lot on a lake here in Columbia that's perfect for skiing. I am temporarily boatless, but want to change that. The lake is small enough that chop isn't a problem and I'll be able to have a dock, so frequent trailering or beaching won't be needed. We plan to have our new house finished by next summer, but I can put in a dock whenever I want. Over the years I've had outboards and I/Os and have had enough of them. It's time for an inboard.

I have two daughters (soon to turn 7 and 3) and a wife who wants to learn to ski. The oldest daughter is on the swim team at the local YMCA and loves everything water. The boat I am looking for will be primarily for watersports. Since we will have a house on the lake, group boating can be based from home/dock so I shouldn't have to haul large numbers of people in the boat at the same time as pulling people.

Since we're building a house, I have to keep control of the boat budget. I'd like to get something that's reliable, pulls well, looks good, but doesn't cost more than around $10-12K. I've read through all the information I can get my hands on about the different years of MC boats. I've narrowed my research down to something along the lines of the Prostar 190 or 205 of a vintage that fits my budget.

Now for the dilema. An open bow seems to be more "practical". The extra seating makes it easier to haul spectators when taking my daughters and their friends out to play. However, I prefer the lines of the closed bow and the price for the closed bow models appears lower. I realize that with the closed bow models I'll be limited to the observer seat if I pull from the pylon, but I should also be able to put riders in the rear seat if I pull from the rear tow ring for less serious sports.

I've found a '91 190 that appears to be in great shape. This boat is well within my budget. I've also found a '97 205 that's slightly higher than my budget, but also seems to be in great shape. I also found a '95 205 that appears to be in good mechanical condition and is a great price, but needs new vinyl (wonder what other neglect related issues it has?)

So, the $64K question is would it be a huge mistake to get a closed bow model at this point? I know that as long as I shop carefully and maintain the boat well, I should be able to recoup much of my money if I decide to upgrade to something with more space later. Thanks in advance for the input.

dmminfla
12-07-2009, 05:13 PM
If your kids have freinds like mine do go with the 205 it seats 10. I bought my first inboard in december of 2008 it was a closed bow 86 skier. I loved the boat but it wasn't practical for the family. By april I was in a 97 205 and plan on haging on to it for many more years. If you go with the 205 try to get a 96 or newer there is a big difference from the 92-95. before you buy make sure to read this.

http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=15198

http://www.tmcowners.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=5337&highlight=ProStar+hull+year

ProStar Slalom
12-07-2009, 05:21 PM
I've had nothing but closed-bow boats, but for your situation my vote is 205.

D3skier
12-07-2009, 05:28 PM
my vote goes for the 205 as well.. even though I'm an avid skier I've got an open bow and wouldn't consider any but that. The extra room is nice to have for the "extra" people when your not doing the serious skiing.

Muttley
12-07-2009, 05:34 PM
Them girls and their friends aren't going to get any smaller. I'd go 205.

JMann
12-07-2009, 05:39 PM
I have a 91 PS190 and would vote for the 205. By the time you put a couple ski's and a wake board in the 190 there is really only room for 4 adults. Anymore than that and it's too crowded.

Go for the 205 you won't regret it.

Chicago190
12-07-2009, 06:07 PM
205. 190 is great when the kids are older and won't mind being on the dock when people are out skiing. At their age no one is going to want to be left behind so you'll want the room.

Also, the 97 205 you're considering is going to be a much better wakeboard boat.

ksdaoski
12-07-2009, 07:25 PM
open bow all the way

piper_chuck
12-07-2009, 07:39 PM
Thanks for the input everyone. It appears to be a consensus that I should take the closed bow boats off my list and stick with open bow models. If I try to get a 96 or newer it's going to stretch the budget a bit. Will have to shop carefully and see if I can somehow free up some more $$$.

east tx skier
12-07-2009, 08:25 PM
I had a 93 205 and ultimately upgraded to a closed bow. If you decide on closed bow, go with the 95 because the wake is closer to the early 90's 190. Second choice would be the 190 of that era.

The bow seating was nice when we needed it. That was about once per year and the slalom wake suffers from having people in the bow.

Ski-me
12-07-2009, 08:32 PM
I'd definitely get the 205. I bought my first boat a year ago and have really enjoyed it! I'm like you (kinda), I have 3 girls and with the amount of gear, etc. no way would the 190 work for me. It also promotes friends to come when there is room.....aka you get to keep your eyes on your kids/friends on the weekends.

If you are more concerned with a good ski wake, the 95' is a great choice. In 96' they changed the hull somewhat at the sacrifice (slightly) to the ski wake. This was easy for me and also cheaper!! I got a 94' 205 and have loved it! I also got one with the LT1...a little more horsepower. The best of both worlds for me.....better ski wake with the older unit and also a cheaper price than the newer ones.

Good luck and it's worth the investment!

piper_chuck
12-07-2009, 09:20 PM
I had a 93 205 and ultimately upgraded to a closed bow. If you decide on closed bow, go with the 95 because the wake is closer to the early 90's 190. Second choice would be the 190 of that era.

The bow seating was nice when we needed it. That was about once per year and the slalom wake suffers from having people in the bow.
Hmmm, interesting contrarian perspective. I do think the extra seating will be used when we have others over. The lot is in a big development with lots of families. I suspect the girls will have visitors on a regular basis. We shouldn't have to carry extra equipment, the lake is small enough that we'll never be that far from home. At this point in life, I'm not sure my skiing will get back to the level where I'll notice subtle differences in wakes.

Of the 3 or 4 boats I've found within a 3-4 hour drive from home, a 91 190 seems to be best deal and looks very clean, but there's that pesky closed bow issue. The other two are 95 and 97 205s. The 95 is about 1/2 hour from here and is a good price, but needs a good amount of vinyl work. The 97 is further away, but looks pretty clean and has an LT-1 engine. It's also significantly more than the other two, but justifiably so.

H20BOY
12-07-2009, 09:23 PM
Of those options, I would go with the 205 definitely. Great ski wake and room for more than 2 people. Weight it down and it becomes a decent wakeboard boat.

east tx skier
12-07-2009, 09:23 PM
Tons of storage in a closed bow. We have to drive for our dock. So we're in a slightly less ideal setup than you. Two boys, too. They're young, but I've found my ideal boat in a closed bow. Their grandad has an open bow. So if we have to have an extra boat, he can bring his I suppose. Hasn't come up in two seasons. Again, the 95 205 is a great boat. The 97 is a great boat, too. But of those choices, it would be my 3rd. The 91 would be my first. But I'm a certifiably nuts closed bow guy having gone the opposite direction as most.

piper_chuck
12-07-2009, 11:08 PM
I'd definitely get the 205. I bought my first boat a year ago and have really enjoyed it! I'm like you (kinda), I have 3 girls and with the amount of gear, etc. no way would the 190 work for me. It also promotes friends to come when there is room.....aka you get to keep your eyes on your kids/friends on the weekends.

I definitely want to keep my eyes on the girls and their friends, especially as they become teenagers. The more time at home, the better. I'm curious whether your perspective of space in the boat and gear being carried is based on boating from home or having to haul yourselves and stuff to the lake? This will be the first time I will ever be able to ski without having to drive to the lake or pack up the boat and head for a remote cove. I think that's going to make a difference from past experience, but it's new to me.


If you are more concerned with a good ski wake, the 95' is a great choice. In 96' they changed the hull somewhat at the sacrifice (slightly) to the ski wake. This was easy for me and also cheaper!! I got a 94' 205 and have loved it! I also got one with the LT1...a little more horsepower. The best of both worlds for me.....better ski wake with the older unit and also a cheaper price than the newer ones.

Small differences in the wake won't make a huge difference to me. I'm sure they're all going to be significantly better than the boat I most recently had.

What will make a difference is affordability, reliability, and the overall condition of the boat. Unless I'm confused, for the same amount of money I can find a closed bow boat that's newer, in better condition, etc. Of the boats I've found, the 97 205 looks pretty clean and has the LT1. The 91 190 also looks pretty clean, but is a closed bow. The asking price for the 97 205 is twice the price of the 91 190 and I'm struggling with spending the extra money on the boat versus other stuff such as a boat lift, furniture for the house, college fund for the girls, paying off the car loan early, etc.


Good luck and it's worth the investment!
Thanks for the input. It's definitely worth the $. If it wasn't, I wouldn't be shelling out the money to live on the lake.

j2nh
12-07-2009, 11:24 PM
Closed bow. "Dock skier" with two daughters and everybody participates. Since activity is based around the house/dock, nobody is left out even if they are on the dock.
How about a closed bow and a pontoon?

Miss Rita
12-07-2009, 11:56 PM
Even though you have a house on a lake, your kids will want to all be out in the boat with you at the same time. Enjoy it while you can. Before you know it they will grow up and you'll relish these times.

C36
12-08-2009, 12:38 AM
Piper Chuck:

Here are my two cents (taking into account what others have said - including ETS). My own children are seven (boy) and ten (girl).
three is too young to be sitting in an open bow (unless attended by an adult)
seven (and her friends) are likely OK in open bow depending on how responsible they are

personally I (like ETS like closed bow boats) but my wife insisted we get an open bow boat - we have the luxury of operating from our dock in the summer, but even so I would suggest open bow - nobody likes being left on the dock (in-laws, out-laws, kids friends, neighbours kids)

we often have up to ten in our boat and I hear the neighbours kids say, "Dad, we should get a boat JUST LIKE THIS!"
often the best way to get my kids to ski/wakeboard is to pile a few of the neighbours kids in the boat first - once you extend an invitation they all want to come along - kids often learn the most from other kids

We have a 2001 X-5 (open boat based on 1995-1997 PS 190 hull). If you could find a SportStar open bow it might come in a few dollars less than the some of the 205's you are looking at. More info on the SportStar see post number four after clicking on the following link:
http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=14622

Don't rush the decision, take your time - shopping (for a boat) is part of the fun. The more you look the clearer your decision will become.

Hope you find the boat that is right for your family. :)

Chicago190
12-08-2009, 01:01 AM
A few considerations I should elaborate.

1. Wakeboarding tends to be more popular with younger kids. The 97 205 will be better because it has more freeboard, so you can add weight if you like. This won't be a problem until the kids are older, so it may be immaterial if you think you'll upgrade in a few years.

2. If you resell in a few years, you will probably recover a good chunk of your extra initial outlay. This is especially true for the 97 205 because it is one of the most sought after hulls Mastercraft has made. Unless competitive slalom skiing takes off again in the next few years, the value of the open-bows is going to remain higher than the closed bows.

3. A closed bow is great when there are 3 or 4 people on the boat max. The problem is when you have people over, no one wants to sit on the dock. For me, I do most of my skiing when there is only a driver and spotter awake. However, when I want to go out in the evening, I usually have to tell people to sit on the dock. I'm willing to bet that with young girls, you will get more use out of the boat if you can load everyone at once and stay out. People always want to watch other people, and your ability to have people on board will generate more interest.

4. Even though it sounds like you live on a small private lake, 190s do not like chop at all. My family's house is also on a small private lake, and during the afternoon the boat is tied up to the dock. It may seem like a small concern, but the 205 is going to be a more comfortable boat on weekend afternoons if other people are using the lake for water sports.

5. You can't go wrong with any of the boats you are looking at. Each has the pros and cons, and in the end you will be happy with your choice.

Thrall
12-08-2009, 01:14 AM
First, the 95 205. If it needs new skins, you're looking at $2k MINIMUM and carpet is probably shot too. Either alot of hrs or neglected (left out in the sun). I'd pass unless it's a great deal.
Sounds like your budget would be much happier with a 190. You'll get a lower hr, better condition 190 for the same $ as a 205 and you said it first......"group boating based from the dock, wont have to haul large #'s of people."
Find a 190 with a tower. Then you can pull whatever you want, even with a boatload of people.
If you find a nice boat at a fair price, you'll get most/all of your money back in the future if you want to upgrade.
For $12k, upper end of your budget, you can get a nice 190, decked out with a tower and a bunch of extras. I just sold my '96 190, 500 hrs, LT1, very good shape, tower, custom bimini, racks, etc for $13k and it took a while. Had alot of people call me saying they could get a comparable boat for $10-11k, so you could find a nice one for that much probably.
Bottom line, I'd rather get a nicer 190 than a fixer upper 205 for the same $.
IF you find a screamin deal on a 205 though, get it! I probably wouldn't have gotten a new boat if the old one was an open bow, but I now routinely haul 8 people, long drive to the lake, no docks, etc.

piper_chuck
12-08-2009, 07:51 AM
Closed bow. "Dock skier" with two daughters and everybody participates. Since activity is based around the house/dock, nobody is left out even if they are on the dock.
How about a closed bow and a pontoon?
Lake association limits each member to two boats. The second must be non-powered or have a really small engine. Not sure they'd let me have a pontoon and even if they did, not sure I'd want the additional expense/maintenance and boat cluttering the shoreline.

piper_chuck
12-08-2009, 07:53 AM
Even though you have a house on a lake, your kids will want to all be out in the boat with you at the same time. Enjoy it while you can. Before you know it they will grow up and you'll relish these times.
Yup, that's part of the dilema! :confused:

piper_chuck
12-08-2009, 08:04 AM
Piper Chuck:

Here are my two cents (taking into account what others have said - including ETS). My own children are seven (boy) and ten (girl).
three is too young to be sitting in an open bow (unless attended by an adult)
seven (and her friends) are likely OK in open bow depending on how responsible they are

personally I (like ETS like closed bow boats) but my wife insisted we get an open bow boat - we have the luxury of operating from our dock in the summer, but even so I would suggest open bow - nobody likes being left on the dock (in-laws, out-laws, kids friends, neighbours kids)

we often have up to ten in our boat and I hear the neighbours kids say, "Dad, we should get a boat JUST LIKE THIS!"
often the best way to get my kids to ski/wakeboard is to pile a few of the neighbours kids in the boat first - once you extend an invitation they all want to come along - kids often learn the most from other kids

We have a 2001 X-5 (open boat based on 1995-1997 PS 190 hull). If you could find a SportStar open bow it might come in a few dollars less than the some of the 205's you are looking at. More info on the SportStar see post number four after clicking on the following link:
http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=14622

Don't rush the decision, take your time - shopping (for a boat) is part of the fun. The more you look the clearer your decision will become.

Hope you find the boat that is right for your family. :)
I agree, the younger one is too young to be in the open bow. When in the boat she will be next to a responsible adult at all times.

I hear you on the group thing. I suspect this will become a regular weekend activity for family and friends and I can understand the difference between groups of kids (im)patiently waiting on the dock for their turn versus being out in the boat and part of the action.

I'll look around at the other open bow options too. Mostly what I've seen within a reasonable drive (< 3 hours away) are 205s. I agree there's no hurry. I haven't even finished my dock plans. I should get the dock in place before I buy. I plan to keep looking, but am prepared to buy when I find a good deal. This seems like a good time of year to buy because there are fewer buyers and a good number of people who want to sell. I suspect prices will be higher in the spring...

coz
12-08-2009, 08:15 AM
Go with the 205.......then thre will be no regrets :D

http://www.mastercraft.com/photopost/data/500/Lake9-27004.jpg

piper_chuck
12-08-2009, 08:17 AM
A few considerations I should elaborate.

1. Wakeboarding tends to be more popular with younger kids. The 97 205 will be better because it has more freeboard, so you can add weight if you like. This won't be a problem until the kids are older, so it may be immaterial if you think you'll upgrade in a few years.

Yup. I figure I've got around 3 years before a big wake becomes necessary. There are also other boats on the lake and I suspect once the house is done and we're on the water regularly we'll start trading pulls. Finding another driver will be necessary for me, my wife has only driven a boat a couple times...


2. If you resell in a few years, you will probably recover a good chunk of your extra initial outlay. This is especially true for the 97 205 because it is one of the most sought after hulls Mastercraft has made. Unless competitive slalom skiing takes off again in the next few years, the value of the open-bows is going to remain higher than the closed bows.

Understood. It seems the open bows are easier to sell. One thing I wonder is if the depreciation rates are similar once they're no longer new. If the initial expense of the closed bow is lower reselling at a lower price isn't bad.


3. A closed bow is great when there are 3 or 4 people on the boat max. The problem is when you have people over, no one wants to sit on the dock. For me, I do most of my skiing when there is only a driver and spotter awake. However, when I want to go out in the evening, I usually have to tell people to sit on the dock. I'm willing to bet that with young girls, you will get more use out of the boat if you can load everyone at once and stay out. People always want to watch other people, and your ability to have people on board will generate more interest.

Starting to see this. Even though much of the lake is visible from the dock, it's not the same as being in the boat...


4. Even though it sounds like you live on a small private lake, 190s do not like chop at all. My family's house is also on a small private lake, and during the afternoon the boat is tied up to the dock. It may seem like a small concern, but the 205 is going to be a more comfortable boat on weekend afternoons if other people are using the lake for water sports.

From watching the lake this past summer and talking to other people on the lake, it's rare to see more than 2 or 3 boats running at once. Much of the boating is skiing and they tend to make their runs and then return to the dock. The lake isn't big enough to have traffic for people just out joy riding. However, when there is chop, a smoother ride is a good thing.


5. You can't go wrong with any of the boats you are looking at. Each has the pros and cons, and in the end you will be happy with your choice.
Thanks. I suspect I'm over analyzing things a bit, but that's part of the fun of shopping for new toys. I'd rather put the time in researching it now than ending up with something I'm not happy with...

JohnE
12-08-2009, 08:19 AM
205 All the way. The only advocates of closed bow boats are die hard slalom skiers. And most of them will look at your situation and tell you to go 205. The extra money on the 205 vs. the 190 will be the best money you ever spend. I went from an 89 190 to an 88 tristar a few years ago just for the open bow. And I didn't regret it. And the tristar isn't half the boat that a 205 is.

And when you ever decide to sell, the 205 will likely go much quicker than the 190.

Don't rush the decision. Hang here and read and keep looking for the right deal. And be ready to pull the trigger when you find it.

Good luck.

piper_chuck
12-08-2009, 08:37 AM
First, the 95 205. If it needs new skins, you're looking at $2k MINIMUM and carpet is probably shot too. Either alot of hrs or neglected (left out in the sun). I'd pass unless it's a great deal.

That's part of the dilemma. The 95 is $6k less than the 97. In addition to being less $, it comes with a tower and some other extras. The downside of the 95 is obviously not knowing the extent of the neglect. The 97 has obviously been better cared for, has the LT1 engine (not really a big deal to me). The 97 also has no tower. To me this is actually a plus at this point. I find towers to be ugly. If the girls end up getting hooked on wakeboarding I can see that it could become necessary, but for now, I would rather have a boat without one.


Sounds like your budget would be much happier with a 190. You'll get a lower hr, better condition 190 for the same $ as a 205 and you said it first......"group boating based from the dock, wont have to haul large #'s of people."

Yup, budget is a big consideration. The 91 190 appears to be in as good or better condition as the 97 205. I have to decide if the extra space is worth $7100 more for the 205. Obviously, other choices will come along, these are just the two that are at the top of the list at this time...


Find a 190 with a tower. Then you can pull whatever you want, even with a boatload of people.
If you find a nice boat at a fair price, you'll get most/all of your money back in the future if you want to upgrade.

That's what I'm hoping for. See above comment on towers. I recognize their utility value, but I still don't like what they do to the lines of the boat...


For $12k, upper end of your budget, you can get a nice 190, decked out with a tower and a bunch of extras. I just sold my '96 190, 500 hrs, LT1, very good shape, tower, custom bimini, racks, etc for $13k and it took a while. Had alot of people call me saying they could get a comparable boat for $10-11k, so you could find a nice one for that much probably.

Dontcha just love people saying they can get the same thing cheaper from someone else? If that's the case, why don't they do so? :)


Bottom line, I'd rather get a nicer 190 than a fixer upper 205 for the same $.
IF you find a screamin deal on a 205 though, get it! I probably wouldn't have gotten a new boat if the old one was an open bow, but I now routinely haul 8 people, long drive to the lake, no docks, etc.
I too would rather find something that doesn't need a big initial repair investment, unless it's a smoking deal.

piper_chuck
12-08-2009, 08:40 AM
205 All the way. The only advocates of closed bow boats are die hard slalom skiers. And most of them will look at your situation and tell you to go 205. The extra money on the 205 vs. the 190 will be the best money you ever spend. I went from an 89 190 to an 88 tristar a few years ago just for the open bow. And I didn't regret it. And the tristar isn't half the boat that a 205 is.

And when you ever decide to sell, the 205 will likely go much quicker than the 190.

Don't rush the decision. Hang here and read and keep looking for the right deal. And be ready to pull the trigger when you find it.

Good luck.
Got it, thanks.

piper_chuck
12-08-2009, 08:42 AM
Go with the 205.......then thre will be no regrets :D

Just have to get a bigger crowbar for the wallet, eh? :D

Miss Rita
12-08-2009, 11:08 AM
(Ahem) As a father of four girls I have a little experience with this.

Another thought is that your kids won't need the ultimate slalom pull at this time. If you get the 190 you can attach the rope at the transom and still have seating for six easily. Your kids won't care where the rope is attached.

Having said that, a 205 is still a better choice. The 205 has more room with no sacrifice in skiability. There's absolutely no reason why a three year old can't spend time in the bow if she has a PFD. In fact, she'll probably prefer to ride up front, and no, her weight in the bow won't ruin the wake. Plus, it will be easier to watch her there.

My kids, three of whom are grown and moved away, have told me several times that they're glad I didn't golf, and spent time with them water skiing and snow skiing.

Ski-me
12-08-2009, 11:16 AM
We do it both ways......depending on where we are at. In Idaho, we have a dock to go back to but with all the cousins, most seats are full. Keeping the gear on the dock helps, too.

When we are here in Colorado, we are unable to use a "home dock" so the gear need to go with us. I try to keep most of the skis, wetsuits, cooler, wakeboard, etc behind the driver's seat. The center engine does take up some room but it's worth it to me for the ski wake.

Keep in mind that the older boats (92' and older are carberated). In part of 93 and all of 94' the boats started coming with fuel injection. This was one of my requirements but I also wanted the best ski wake.....that brought me to only two years (1994 and 1995).

When I am pulling kids, I use the rear eye for the rope. This keeps all of the seats open.

Here are my two (of three) girls and their cousins......always need extra seats!

etduc
12-08-2009, 12:14 PM
We do it both ways......depending on where we are at. In Idaho, we have a dock to go back to but with all the cousins, most seats are full. Keeping the gear on the dock helps, too.

When we are here in Colorado, we are unable to use a "home dock" so the gear need to go with us. I try to keep most of the skis, wetsuits, cooler, wakeboard, etc behind the driver's seat. The center engine does take up some room but it's worth it to me for the ski wake.

Keep in mind that the older boats (92' and older are carberated). In part of 93 and all of 94' the boats started coming with fuel injection. This was one of my requirements but I also wanted the best ski wake.....that brought me to only two years (1994 and 1995).

When I am pulling kids, I use the rear eye for the rope. This keeps all of the seats open.

Here are my two (of three) girls and their cousins......always need extra seats!

Ski-me, not fair. You played the kid card. 8p

Serious note. 95 wake is very much, like the 190. So don't discount it. Main problem, with older boats is cosmetic parts. Custom Skins, 1500.00 and up. Dash parts, panels,etc. not made. So owner has to be creative. It will be reflected, on resale, 190 included. 97 205 is
a better all round boat (I know you trying to justify the 190) just is.

WELCOME, to the world of DRIVER DAD! :steering:

Jesus_Freak
12-08-2009, 12:27 PM
205 All the way. The only advocates of closed bow boats are die hard slalom skiers.

I consider myself a die hard slalom skier (those of you who have seen me ski may disagree), and I still say 205 all the way! :)

JohnE
12-08-2009, 01:02 PM
Yup, budget is a big consideration. The 91 190 appears to be in as good or better condition as the 97 205. I have to decide if the extra space is worth $7100 more for the 205. Obviously, other choices will come along, these are just the two that are at the top of the list at this time...

.

The difference in money between comparable 190's and 205's in similar condition and years will not be $7K. I think you realize that with what you posted. More like $2-3K. I still say it'll be the best money you spend. Cut something from the budget of the new house that can be added later if necessary. Wood floors, granite countertop, find something you can do yourself that you'd otherwise hire out. Everyone likes being in the bow of the boat. Also makes it easier to load and unload people.

east tx skier
12-08-2009, 02:52 PM
Having said that, a 205 is still a better choice. The 205 has more room with no sacrifice in skiability. There's absolutely no reason why a three year old can't spend time in the bow if she has a PFD. In fact, she'll probably prefer to ride up front, and no, her weight in the bow won't ruin the wake. Plus, it will be easier to watch her there.


I'm by no means telling you or anyone else what decisions to make with your kids. In our case, however, the rule was that the bow was for adults only. I've heard at least one story of a child getting bounced out of an open bow and being run over by the boat. For our comfort level, we decided that we wanted them within arm's reach. We put together a custom observer jump seat so that we could have plenty of room for little ones next to the driver. For us, having gone to a closed bow, we haven't missed the extra seating in the open bow at all. The extra storage space has been a huge improvement. Everyone has to make the decision that suits him best. For the OP, the 205 may be that right decision. It was certainly a great boat for us while we had it.

DooSPX
12-08-2009, 03:03 PM
I'm by no means telling you or anyone else what decisions to make with your kids. In our case, however, the rule was that the bow was for adults only. I've heard at least one story of a child getting bounced out of an open bow and being run over by the boat. For our comfort level, we decided that we wanted them within arm's reach. We put together a custom observer jump seat so that we could have plenty of room for little ones next to the driver. For us, having gone to a closed bow, we haven't missed the extra seating in the open bow at all. The extra storage space has been a huge improvement. Everyone has to make the decision that suits him best. For the OP, the 205 may be that right decision. It was certainly a great boat for us while we had it.

I agree with Doug on this... if you get the 205, which I think will be the best bet for you. please keep young kids on the OB seat. I used to have a open bow outboard and it is not that hard to get bounced out if you catch a wake just right, even with the deep sides.

nmcjr
12-08-2009, 06:42 PM
I am biased, 100% wakeboarder, but for me a tower would be a must have. Not only will it be desirable for wakeboarding and provide storage for boards etc, but will also make it much easier to sell, at least in my experience in NorCal (although I think wakeboarding might be more popular here than elsewhere as a %) and I'm not sure how much it adds to the purchase price, just may take longer to find the right one.

The thing about a tower for kids, is that it actually makes it easier to teach little ones to get up because you can shorten the rope up very short, say 40 ft and it will give them a nice upward pull. This assumes they wakeboard and don't ski, of course...

I have a 205V hull and find even that to get crowded at times and have considered upgrading a time or two. So, that said, the 205 would be what I would consider a minimum.

Again, these are just my opinions, but in the end a boat will be hours of family fun regardless of what you end up with--especially since you have the lake house, so jealous.

Also, this is a great time to be buying a boat.

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 07:03 AM
The difference in money between comparable 190's and 205's in similar condition and years will not be $7K. I think you realize that with what you posted. More like $2-3K. I still say it'll be the best money you spend. Cut something from the budget of the new house that can be added later if necessary. Wood floors, granite countertop, find something you can do yourself that you'd otherwise hire out. Everyone likes being in the bow of the boat. Also makes it easier to load and unload people.
I agree, it's not a $7k difference for comparable years and conditions. That price difference was for boats that appear to be in similar condition, but different years. Since I'm shopping used, and because Columbia isn't exactly overflowing with choices, I'm having to look at the available choices within a reasonable distance. I'm also looking closely at what I can get at several price points, hence the large range in years, so I can find a spot that'll work well for the family.

As far as the house budget goes, I'm already working the wanna haves, should haves, and must haves, as well as figuring out which things I can do myself versus hiring out. For many of the wanna "haves", past experience tells me it's cheaper to do them up front and if one decides not to include them when building it becomes highly unlikely they'll ever get done. Based on the list of things I'm going to do, once framing is complete I'm going to be busy until long after move in.

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 07:38 AM
I'm by no means telling you or anyone else what decisions to make with your kids. In our case, however, the rule was that the bow was for adults only. I've heard at least one story of a child getting bounced out of an open bow and being run over by the boat. For our comfort level, we decided that we wanted them within arm's reach. We put together a custom observer jump seat so that we could have plenty of room for little ones next to the driver.

I have similar feelings about little ones. IMO, they need to sit in the more stable seating areas and in a place where an adult can ensure they stay seated. Not sure I would make the bow an adults only area, but the 3 year old would typically not ride there.


For us, having gone to a closed bow, we haven't missed the extra seating in the open bow at all. The extra storage space has been a huge improvement. Everyone has to make the decision that suits him best. For the OP, the 205 may be that right decision. It was certainly a great boat for us while we had it.
I'm beginning to think either will be ok, but recognize an open bow will give me the ability to take more people out at one time.

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 07:46 AM
I am biased, 100% wakeboarder, but for me a tower would be a must have. Not only will it be desirable for wakeboarding and provide storage for boards etc, but will also make it much easier to sell, at least in my experience in NorCal (although I think wakeboarding might be more popular here than elsewhere as a %) and I'm not sure how much it adds to the purchase price, just may take longer to find the right one.

There seems to be a mix of boats with and without towers. If I could just get past my perception that they ruin the visual lines of most boats, I guess I could learn to accept them. At this point I'm not considering them a must have, but am also not going to rule out a boat if it's got one.


The thing about a tower for kids, is that it actually makes it easier to teach little ones to get up because you can shorten the rope up very short, say 40 ft and it will give them a nice upward pull. This assumes they wakeboard and don't ski, of course...

I plan to introduce them to both and let them decide which they prefer.


I have a 205V hull and find even that to get crowded at times and have considered upgrading a time or two. So, that said, the 205 would be what I would consider a minimum.

I was looking at the V configuration earlier today. I like the idea of getting the engine box out of the middle of the boat. If I could find something within my budget it might be a possibility, but I think that's unlikely...


Again, these are just my opinions, but in the end a boat will be hours of family fun regardless of what you end up with--especially since you have the lake house, so jealous.

Also, this is a great time to be buying a boat.
I've worked for years to get to the point where I could live on a lake. Looking forward to it.

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 07:49 AM
Ski-me, not fair. You played the kid card. 8p

Serious note. 95 wake is very much, like the 190. So don't discount it. Main problem, with older boats is cosmetic parts. Custom Skins, 1500.00 and up. Dash parts, panels,etc. not made. So owner has to be creative. It will be reflected, on resale, 190 included. 97 205 is
a better all round boat (I know you trying to justify the 190) just is.

WELCOME, to the world of DRIVER DAD! :steering:
I agree, of the 3 I'm looking at right now, the 97 205 is a better boat. I just have to figure out whether it's "better" enough for me to spend the extra $ right now.

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 07:58 AM
We do it both ways......depending on where we are at. In Idaho, we have a dock to go back to but with all the cousins, most seats are full. Keeping the gear on the dock helps, too.

When we are here in Colorado, we are unable to use a "home dock" so the gear need to go with us. I try to keep most of the skis, wetsuits, cooler, wakeboard, etc behind the driver's seat. The center engine does take up some room but it's worth it to me for the ski wake.

So, with the boating I'll be doing, I'll be able to keep most of the equipment on the dock, but I guess there will be a regular need to carry extra friends and family. An open bow will give me room for a few extra riders.


Keep in mind that the older boats (92' and older are carberated). In part of 93 and all of 94' the boats started coming with fuel injection. This was one of my requirements but I also wanted the best ski wake.....that brought me to only two years (1994 and 1995).

Fuel injection is a big plus for the newer years. I'll keep that in mind.


When I am pulling kids, I use the rear eye for the rope. This keeps all of the seats open.

That's what I figured I'd do for the kids and my wife. I'd probably be the only one using the center pylon and since I'm fussy, I'd probably want minimal passengers in the boat while I'm skiing.


Here are my two (of three) girls and their cousins......always need extra seats!
Nice family. The pics reminded me that I'm going to have to budget for more than a boat and skis, wetsuits, etc are also needed.

JohnE
12-09-2009, 08:40 AM
I agree, it's not a $7k difference for comparable years and conditions. That price difference was for boats that appear to be in similar condition, but different years. Since I'm shopping used, and because Columbia isn't exactly overflowing with choices, I'm having to look at the available choices within a reasonable distance. I'm also looking closely at what I can get at several price points, hence the large range in years, so I can find a spot that'll work well for the family.

As far as the house budget goes, I'm already working the wanna haves, should haves, and must haves, as well as figuring out which things I can do myself versus hiring out. For many of the wanna "haves", past experience tells me it's cheaper to do them up front and if one decides not to include them when building it becomes highly unlikely they'll ever get done. Based on the list of things I'm going to do, once framing is complete I'm going to be busy until long after move in.

Don't count out buying a boat at a distance. There are some reputable dealers on here. Also a lot of members here are willing to check out a boat for another member. Just have a marine survey done as well as a member will only be able to give you details on how it looks most likely.

I don't know about adding things to your house after it's done. Depends on ambition and finances. I built my house in '95. Added a large family room and 2 car garage in '97. Built a barn in 2000. Along the way went to granite counter tops. Added hardwood to rooms that didn't have it. Added built in's. Fished in wholehouse audio. Built a bar. Another deck and ground level stone patio. I'm an electricain as well as a building inspector. If I can offer you any insight in your project feel free to contact me.

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 09:55 AM
Don't count out buying a boat at a distance. There are some reputable dealers on here. Also a lot of members here are willing to check out a boat for another member. Just have a marine survey done as well as a member will only be able to give you details on how it looks most likely.

Thanks for this info, I actually hadn't thought of it. There are some markets that have way more boats than are available locally, and I recall ruling out some potential boats due to their distance. I'll keep this in mind.


I don't know about adding things to your house after it's done. Depends on ambition and finances. I built my house in '95. Added a large family room and 2 car garage in '97. Built a barn in 2000. Along the way went to granite counter tops. Added hardwood to rooms that didn't have it. Added built in's. Fished in wholehouse audio. Built a bar. Another deck and ground level stone patio. I'm an electricain as well as a building inspector. If I can offer you any insight in your project feel free to contact me.
That's quite a list. It definitely depends on available time and finances.

With this house I'm trying to make sure I get as many of the wanna haves up front as I can so I spend less time changing things later. The layout of the house will also be more conducive to future projects than the last house. I've allocated about 600 square feet in the basement for workshop space (man cave) and there's also a 25' by 25' garage in the basement for boat/trailer, lawn & garden stuff, and parking for my car. The wife will park in a single car garage that's on the main level.

My workshop in the last house was in the garage and it never worked well. Having dedicated, and somewhat climate controlled, workshop space will make it easier for me to organize tools and supplies as well as take on value add projects like extra cabinets, etc. The garage space will also make it easier to handle boat repairs and upgrades which is part of why I'm willing to consider older boats. Engine repairs and maintenance and limited trim work are things I'm comfortable taking on.

I'm going to have the builder complete the basement living spaces (bedroom, bonus room, and my office) to the finished drywall level and I'll do the doors, trim, painting, and flooring on my own. The workshop spaces will remain unfinished, but insulated, to save money and so I can add extras before the walls get sealed in.

Thanks for the insight offer, I'll keep it in mind. And now back to boats...

Ski-me
12-09-2009, 10:42 AM
Although you are getting a boat, don't forget about the gear! Glad you remembered.

Also, consider long distance as mentioned above. I bought mine from a "Pawn Shop" off of Ebay. I had a local boat guy check the boat out for me but mainly checked out the engine. I figured, so long as I had a good engine, I can fix the rest. Everything turned out great (except the posting of MY compression test results on the Ebay Auction :mad:). Probably drove the final auction price up higher because that gave other bidders more confidence on the engine.

Here is my budget (Excel sheet).

We did add a lot of stuff besides the bare minimum jackets, skis and wetsuits.
Big perks:
Boom Bar
New Goode Ski
Perfect Pass
New Prop
New Stereo

Depending on your state think about tax. In Colorado, they only collect tax on the trailer.....not the boat :confused:. Anyways, be sure the value of the trailer is proportional to the boat. Pawn shop just guessed.....valued my trailer at $2000! Should have been closer to $800 - $1000.

Anyways, good luck and keep researching. It really helps!





Here is a good search engine site:


http://www.jaxed.com/cgi-bin/mash.cgi?cat=cpboat&itm=mastercraft&loc=&fil=205&ys=&ye=&ps=&pe=&pgs=50&submit=++++go++++

Seems to find quite a bit of recently listed boats.

east tx skier
12-09-2009, 11:07 AM
I have similar feelings about little ones. IMO, they need to sit in the more stable seating areas and in a place where an adult can ensure they stay seated. Not sure I would make the bow an adults only area, but the 3 year old would typically not ride there.


We don't have any teens or tweens in our extended family just yet. Just old farts and little kids all under twelve. Adults only is a bit generalized.

Back to the boats, ski behind everything before you buy. The difference between the ski wakes of older 190 and 205 are pretty minimal. The newer 205 is a little more distinct. Each boat has its benefits and drawbacks. But if you just walk around the trailer, kick the tires and sit in the driver's seat, you won't know how you feel about the boat you end up with versus what you could have ended up with.

If the seller is not willing to take you out on the water, cross that boat off the list.

I agree on traveling for the right deal. I got lucky and found both of my boats within 200 miles. However, I sold my 205 to a nice fellow from Canada. There are a lot of people on this forum who will be happy to go give a boat a first look for you if it's near to them.

Jesus_Freak
12-09-2009, 12:59 PM
This may have been discussed already (havent read every post), but I typically leave the back seat out of my 205 in order to have plenty of floor space for all of my family's gear. The inclusion of all of our gear makes for fewer trips back to the dock. We sometimes keep a medium-sized tube in the area the back seat normally occupies and still have pylon skiing available. With the seat out, someone is always having to sit in the bow. So, another way to look at it is, the open bow allows the same seating (for old enough passengers) with more floor space.

Probably obvious, but I thought worth mentioning...

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 02:40 PM
Although you are getting a boat, don't forget about the gear! Glad you remembered.

Also, consider long distance as mentioned above. I bought mine from a "Pawn Shop" off of Ebay. I had a local boat guy check the boat out for me but mainly checked out the engine. I figured, so long as I had a good engine, I can fix the rest. Everything turned out great (except the posting of MY compression test results on the Ebay Auction :mad:). Probably drove the final auction price up higher because that gave other bidders more confidence on the engine.

Here is my budget (Excel sheet).

We did add a lot of stuff besides the bare minimum jackets, skis and wetsuits.
Big perks:
Boom Bar
New Goode Ski
Perfect Pass
New Prop
New Stereo

Depending on your state think about tax. In Colorado, they only collect tax on the trailer.....not the boat :confused:. Anyways, be sure the value of the trailer is proportional to the boat. Pawn shop just guessed.....valued my trailer at $2000! Should have been closer to $800 - $1000.

Anyways, good luck and keep researching. It really helps!





Here is a good search engine site:


http://www.jaxed.com/cgi-bin/mash.cgi?cat=cpboat&itm=mastercraft&loc=&fil=205&ys=&ye=&ps=&pe=&pgs=50&submit=++++go++++

Seems to find quite a bit of recently listed boats.
Thanks for the info. Taxes are definitely going to be a hit, people around here seem to love throwing money toward the government. That's another reason to buy older. ;) I'll check out the search site from home, seems to be blocked here at work.

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 02:42 PM
We don't have any teens or tweens in our extended family just yet. Just old farts and little kids all under twelve. Adults only is a bit generalized.

Back to the boats, ski behind everything before you buy. The difference between the ski wakes of older 190 and 205 are pretty minimal. The newer 205 is a little more distinct. Each boat has its benefits and drawbacks. But if you just walk around the trailer, kick the tires and sit in the driver's seat, you won't know how you feel about the boat you end up with versus what you could have ended up with.

If the seller is not willing to take you out on the water, cross that boat off the list.

I agree on traveling for the right deal. I got lucky and found both of my boats within 200 miles. However, I sold my 205 to a nice fellow from Canada. There are a lot of people on this forum who will be happy to go give a boat a first look for you if it's near to them.
Thanks, that's good to know. I definitely want to drive the boat before deciding. Not sure if I have to ski behind it or not, especially if I buy in January, but I have to be sure it runs right.

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 02:44 PM
This may have been discussed already (havent read every post), but I typically leave the back seat out of my 205 in order to have plenty of floor space for all of my family's gear. The inclusion of all of our gear makes for fewer trips back to the dock. We sometimes keep a medium-sized tube in the area the back seat normally occupies and still have pylon skiing available. With the seat out, someone is always having to sit in the bow. So, another way to look at it is, the open bow allows the same seating (for old enough passengers) with more floor space.

Probably obvious, but I thought worth mentioning...
Thanks. I'm still thinking through carrying stuff in the boat versus leaving it on the dock. The lake really is small enough that returning to the dock to swap skis, pickup a tube, etc isn't a big deal.

east tx skier
12-09-2009, 04:29 PM
Thanks, that's good to know. I definitely want to drive the boat before deciding. Not sure if I have to ski behind it or not, especially if I buy in January, but I have to be sure it runs right.

I would ski behind it for sure. But that's me. As for driving it, take your time. Run it all over the rpm spectrum. Shut it down, let it sit, then do it again. Don't be in too big of a hurry.

dmminfla
12-09-2009, 04:41 PM
This looks like it might be a good deal. The auction has ended but I'm sure you could contact the seller. Be patient when looking now and then you can find a great deal. I pikcked up my 97 205 way under priced.


http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/1996-Mastercraft-prostar-205-fuel-injected-MINT-DEAL_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQitemZ120494229857QQsspagena meZRSSQ3aBQ3aSRCHQ3aUSQ3a101#v4-15

C36
12-09-2009, 05:43 PM
Thanks. I'm still thinking through carrying stuff in the boat versus leaving it on the dock. The lake really is small enough that returning to the dock to swap skis, pickup a tube, etc isn't a big deal.

This is something you should take into consideration with the design/configuration of the dock - our dock is long enough that we can approach the dock nose first, spin the boat while we are off the side, glide in parrallel (now with nose pointed out into the lake), load/unload, and then of we go. We have bumpers tied to the dock all the time so we can do a gentle bounce off the dock on the approach in.

ShawnE
12-09-2009, 07:47 PM
If you don't care for the look of a tower you may want to consider using an extended pylon. We have a '92 205, and with the taller pull point, the kids can still use the rear seat to cheer on their friends. There is a guide that keeps the rope out of the way.

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 08:33 PM
This looks like it might be a good deal. The auction has ended but I'm sure you could contact the seller. Be patient when looking now and then you can find a great deal. I pikcked up my 97 205 way under priced.


http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/1996-Mastercraft-prostar-205-fuel-injected-MINT-DEAL_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQitemZ120494229857QQsspagena meZRSSQ3aBQ3aSRCHQ3aUSQ3a101#v4-15
Thanks for the link. I remember looking at that listing, but dismissing it because it's too far from home, about 7.5 hours. I'll look it over a bit more and possibly contact the seller. Interestingly, the seller has also listed an 88 190 with a tower...

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 09:02 PM
This is something you should take into consideration with the design/configuration of the dock - our dock is long enough that we can approach the dock nose first, spin the boat while we are off the side, glide in parrallel (now with nose pointed out into the lake), load/unload, and then of we go. We have bumpers tied to the dock all the time so we can do a gentle bounce off the dock on the approach in.
The mist and scenery in your pics reminds me of Winnipesaukee, the lake I grew up on. While I miss the lake, and NH, I absolutely do not miss the long, cold winters.

I'm still thinking about the dock configuration. I'm limited on how far out it can go and how big it can be. I need to get out there soon and take some depth measurements before I decide on the final design. Being able to swing the boat around so you can leave bow first is a good idea.

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 09:38 PM
I would ski behind it for sure. But that's me. As for driving it, take your time. Run it all over the rpm spectrum. Shut it down, let it sit, then do it again. Don't be in too big of a hurry.
Test skiing behind it just brought back a memory from looooong ago. I think it was around 1972 when my father decided it was time to buy a new family boat. In order to be sure it had enough power they did a test by pulling my older brother. I guess they figured if the boat had enough grunt to get him up, it could pull anyone. It did and we bought the boat.

Thanks for the input on the test drive. I also plan to insist that the owner let me see how the engine starts cold.

I'm a little unsure how to handle a test drive this time of year. I'm sure many of the boats I'm looking at here or further north are already winterized. I'd hate to have someone put a boat back in service for a test drive and then tell him thanks, but no thanks. Is there a protocol for this?

TEAL98
12-09-2009, 10:01 PM
Piper Chuck... where are you located? And what kind of a Piper are you in? Cherokee, Comanchee, Seneca, etc? You talk about skiing bringing back memories, N8611W brings me back some memories:cool:

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 10:21 PM
Piper Chuck... where are you located? And what kind of a Piper are you in? Cherokee, Comanchee, Seneca, etc? You talk about skiing bringing back memories, N8611W brings me back some memories:cool:
Living in Columbia, SC since the end of July. Moved here after 27 years in the Raleigh, NC area. Actually, the piper isn't related to flying, even though I have been known to fly radio control Cubs, it's got something to do with the only musical instrument I ever learned to play.

piper_chuck
12-09-2009, 10:35 PM
Here is a good search engine site:


http://www.jaxed.com/cgi-bin/mash.cgi?cat=cpboat&itm=mastercraft&loc=&fil=205&ys=&ye=&ps=&pe=&pgs=50&submit=++++go++++

Seems to find quite a bit of recently listed boats.
Finally got a chance to try out this link. Great site, thanks. It finds 3 of the boats I had mentioned along with several additional open bow ones that I hadn't seen yet.

piper_chuck
12-18-2009, 02:10 PM
I might make a road trip to NC tomorrow. Depends a bit on the weather. There's a '93 205 on consignment at a dealer in NC. The asking price is $8900. The sales person said it's in great shape and has good, and even, compression on all cylinders.

One downside is the boat has no trailer, the owner kept it at a marina with dry stack. I would have to find a trailer. The salesman said they could get a new single axle Ez Loader with brakes for $2500. Another option would be to find a second hand trailer somewhere.

In the same direction there's also a '98 205 with 325 hours for $13,900. If this is in similar condition as the '93, it seems like a much better deal.

I also saw an '89 Tristar 190 and a '90 Maristar 210 for sale in NC, both under $10K. The Tristar would be in the same direction as the other two, the Maristar is in a different direction.

If I don't go up there I may see if the '95 205 is still available locally. The asking price was $8500, it comes with some extras (tower, perfect pass cruise control, ballast system), and is injected rather than carb'd like the '93. The downside to this one is it needs a fair amount of interior work.

Decisions, decisions, decisions...

dmminfla
12-18-2009, 02:57 PM
Here is one with a trailer for 8500.00


http://columbia.en.craigslist.org/boa/1484420285.html

piper_chuck
12-18-2009, 03:05 PM
Here is one with a trailer for 8500.00


http://columbia.en.craigslist.org/boa/1484420285.html
Thanks. I'm work, so I can't view CL. I have the description saved in my email, which I can get to from work. The listing number matches. The owner sent me additional pics. The interior needs a fair amount of work, which makes me wonder how well it's been maintained mechanically.

Based on the weather forecast for Charlotte tonight and tomorrow, I don't think I'm heading up there tomorrow. If I look at a boat this weekend it'll probably be this one. It's within 30-45 minutes of home.

jipster43
12-18-2009, 08:36 PM
I'd go with the 190. It would be a lot easier to get a new boat later than it will be to do things to your home - especially with youngsters running around. I come from a family of five kids and we always had closed bow boats and it never cramped our style. My brother has an open bow and it is rarely needed. But, again, if you need to expand later, you can but for now that extra cash you save can go to the purchasing of gear. I can't imagine anyone is going to complain about being towed behind a 190.

JP :)

piper_chuck
01-11-2010, 12:10 AM
This 91 190 is for sale locally: http://s5.photobucket.com/albums/y178/byro01/Mastercraft/

The owner and I have traded emails. He's asking around $8,000. Said the interior is new and the engine has 670 hours. Also has dual battery, new tires and lights on the trailer. Includes a few extras like prop puller, strut bearing puller, and some other general boating stuff.

From looking closely at the pics, it looks like the trailer has some rust that's been painted over. The interior looks pretty well done. There are some obvious scratches on the gelcoat, that he's clearly shown. Swim platform looks good and the engine looks clean (although that says nothing about its condition inside). One thing I am curious about is the blower vents. Aren't they supposed to have something over them?

I realize it doesn't have the space of a 205, but it should do well for a few years while my daughters are young. The lower price would let me put more money into the house and water toys.

Anyway, I'm new to MCs. I'd be interested in input on whether this seems like a reasonable deal and if it's worth checking out?

thatsmrmastercraft
01-11-2010, 01:35 AM
Around $8,000 seems reasonable. Its no surprise that a trailer of this vintage is in some need of work. I would want to have a few whacks with a ball peen hammer to assess the extent of the rust. If the trailer craps out and you need a new trailer, there goes the good price. With the new house looming, will you have time to renew the trailer?

I would also like to see the results of a compression test and hear the engine run.

Touching up some scratches in the gel-coat shouldn't be too bad.

If everything checks out I would probably pull the trigger on this boat and be happy.

piper_chuck
01-11-2010, 10:20 AM
Around $8,000 seems reasonable. Its no surprise that a trailer of this vintage is in some need of work. I would want to have a few whacks with a ball peen hammer to assess the extent of the rust. If the trailer craps out and you need a new trailer, there goes the good price. With the new house looming, will you have time to renew the trailer?

Thanks for the hammer tip, hadn't thought of that. I also need to review the threads on judging the condition of a trailer. The trailer will be used to get the boat home, less than 15 miles, and to store the boat until I build a dock and install a lift. Dock and lift construction will begin as soon as they've cleared the lot to begin the house. I anticipate having the dock finished within two months. Once that's done, the boat will stay on the lake until late fall. I'm still deciding whether I want to keep the boat on the lake during the winter or not. It seems like many people do. The garage will have room for the boat if I decide to keep it there for the winter. Once the house is done I should have some time to work on the trailer. An alternative is I have a cousin in Columbia who just happens to own a body shop. I may send the trailer to them and let them work on it when they've got some free time.


I would also like to see the results of a compression test and hear the engine run.

I definitely want these. My first visit will be a visual inspection. If the boat looks good I'll schedule a followup visit to check compression and take a test drive. If he's unwilling to allow a water test I will probably pass on the boat.


Touching up some scratches in the gel-coat shouldn't be too bad.

If everything checks out I would probably pull the trigger on this boat and be happy.
Thanks for the input. I'll see how it looks and go from there. If it doesn't work out, there are other boats out there, including a 98 205 that my wife has given her approval for (note that she doesn't worry about where the money comes from, that's my problem). The 98 also has a rusty trailer...

thatsmrmastercraft
01-11-2010, 05:29 PM
Sounds like you have a handle on the boat buying process. Off season and a poor economy sure put a buyer in the drivers seat (no pun intended).

Good luck.

Chicago190
01-11-2010, 05:51 PM
In your situation, I would only be concerned that the trailer is (1) safe, which it appears to be; (2) if it will significantly effect resale. You might be able to negotiate the price down based on the trailer, and since you won't use it during the summer you'll have plenty of time to do the reconditioning yourself. That is assuming it isn't totally shot, which you won't know without inspecting the painted areas. The obvious concern is that the trailer was used in salt water. Check for rust in unpainted areas on the trailer like the jack, axles, etc. Also, the engine will show signs of rust if the boat was used in salt a lot. Manifolds, exterior of the block, pulleys, etc. will probably be a good place to check for corrosion.

The scratches in the gel coat don't look too bad. It doesn't look like the scratches were deep enough to reach the fiberglass, which is good. You might be able to wetsand those scratches out yourself. Also, the gel looks slightly oxidized, which you can remedy with a mild rubbing compound and buffer.

Ski-me
01-11-2010, 06:11 PM
Looks like a nice boat. I did notice a pretty big chunk out of the prop so be ready to replace that baby. At least keep that in mind during negotiations. You may get some vibration during the test drive. If he has a spare that looks better, you may want to try that instead to be sure there aren't any other "vibrations".

piper_chuck
01-11-2010, 06:38 PM
Looks like a nice boat. I did notice a pretty big chunk out of the prop so be ready to replace that baby. At least keep that in mind during negotiations. You may get some vibration during the test drive. If he has a spare that looks better, you may want to try that instead to be sure there aren't any other "vibrations".
Hadn't even noticed that in the picture, good catch! That's definitely an issue, props aren't cheap. He hasn't mentioned having a spare, but I'll ask. I'm also going to have to check the shaft carefully to be sure it isn't bent.

piper_chuck
01-11-2010, 06:44 PM
In your situation, I would only be concerned that the trailer is (1) safe, which it appears to be; (2) if it will significantly effect resale. You might be able to negotiate the price down based on the trailer, and since you won't use it during the summer you'll have plenty of time to do the reconditioning yourself. That is assuming it isn't totally shot, which you won't know without inspecting the painted areas. The obvious concern is that the trailer was used in salt water. Check for rust in unpainted areas on the trailer like the jack, axles, etc. Also, the engine will show signs of rust if the boat was used in salt a lot. Manifolds, exterior of the block, pulleys, etc. will probably be a good place to check for corrosion.

The scratches in the gel coat don't look too bad. It doesn't look like the scratches were deep enough to reach the fiberglass, which is good. You might be able to wetsand those scratches out yourself. Also, the gel looks slightly oxidized, which you can remedy with a mild rubbing compound and buffer.
Thanks. I'll take the time to check the areas of the trailer and engine you mentioned very closely. I'll also see if I can get more of the history.

JohnE
01-11-2010, 07:21 PM
$8K seems like a very good price. You can keep it as long as you want and still get your money back if there are no surprises.

piper_chuck
01-13-2010, 07:05 PM
Went to look at the boat today. I posted my observations in the CL thread (http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showpost.php?p=653454&postcount=1771) since that's where I found out about it. I'll keep my thoughts in this thread focused on whether I think this is the right boat for me or not.

I now understand the comments about the lack of space. After being in a 98 205, the 91 190 does indeed feel cramped. I think it would be ok, but more space sure would be nice.

It has a powerslot transmission. I had researched this earlier and don't see a need for this personally.

I told the owner I'd let him know in a day or two whether I wanted to take it for a test drive...

east tx skier
01-13-2010, 08:38 PM
Went to look at the boat today. I posted my observations in the CL thread (http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showpost.php?p=653454&postcount=1771) since that's where I found out about it. I'll keep my thoughts in this thread focused on whether I think this is the right boat for me or not.

I now understand the comments about the lack of space. After being in a 98 205, the 91 190 does indeed feel cramped. I think it would be ok, but more space sure would be nice.

It has a powerslot transmission. I had researched this earlier and don't see a need for this personally.

I told the owner I'd let him know in a day or two whether I wanted to take it for a test drive...

A couple of things ... What it lacks in seating, it makes up in storage. I don't remember what I did before I had all of the under bow storage I have now. Also, you might want the pslot on the 91 because the horsepower is a bit lower than most of the 92's and 93's I've seen (most of those later years seemed to have opted for the HO 351.

Really, I think you'll be happy with any of your choices. But just wanted to put in a few plugs for closed bows and gear reduction.

piper_chuck
01-16-2010, 05:47 AM
A couple of things ... What it lacks in seating, it makes up in storage. I don't remember what I did before I had all of the under bow storage I have now. Also, you might want the pslot on the 91 because the horsepower is a bit lower than most of the 92's and 93's I've seen (most of those later years seemed to have opted for the HO 351.

Really, I think you'll be happy with any of your choices. But just wanted to put in a few plugs for closed bows and gear reduction.
Thanks. After thinking about this particular 190 I think I'm going to pass. Not knowing what it looked like before the new interior makes me wonder how well it was maintained in the past. It seems like a pretty good deal, but there are a number of things (trailer brakes, prop, and the owner made a few comments leading me to believe he's had issues with the carb) that would need to be fixed...

Meanwhile I took a 98 205 out for a drive yesterday. It's been very well maintained started immediately, even though it was coming out of winterization, and ran flawlessley. I had my daughter with me and she loved riding in the bow. While it's going to cost more, I think it will work out better long term for family skiing. I'm waiting for an answer from the owner on a package price for the boat and something else he's selling that I need.

Ski-me
01-16-2010, 08:13 AM
Good to hear and keep us posted. Also, get some pics up when you get a chance.

I love our 205 and really couldn't even consider the 190. Sure, there may be more storage but you really need people room....not gear room......hence the 205.

The 98 is the way to go for an all purpose boat. The sides are higher (and safer for the kids) compared to the 94-95 era but you get fuel injections too. As I said before, I did not want to consider anything other than fuel injection. 94 and newer had this so you are good to go.

stevo137
01-17-2010, 07:43 PM
Closed bow for me. :)

As long as resale is of no concern for you...

piper_chuck
01-17-2010, 09:11 PM
Decision's been made. Going with the '98 205 I took out Friday. I'm also buying a Hydrohoist from the owner that's already setup for the MC. Not sure exactly when I'm getting the boat, have to make storage arrangements for the next 6-8 weeks until I can get the dock built and lift installed.

thatsmrmastercraft
01-18-2010, 12:16 AM
Congratulations on a fine choice. I'm sure you will be very happy with the 205.

André
01-18-2010, 07:02 AM
Closed bow for me. :)

As long as resale is of no concern for you...

Wow!You're out of jail?
Welcome back,hope you're doing fine

Jesus_Freak
01-18-2010, 12:48 PM
Congratulations on a fine choice. I'm sure you will be very happy with the 205.

I second that. Good news.

east tx skier
01-18-2010, 02:53 PM
Closed bow for me. :)

As long as resale is of no concern for you...

What's up, Stranger!!! A picture of your closed bow makes it an easy decision! Hope all is well!

stevo137
01-18-2010, 09:23 PM
What's up, Stranger!!! A picture of your closed bow makes it an easy decision! Hope all is well!

Doug, for us, it was fine but if I had more than two kids, the 205 is a great combination for a family and you can still ski your arse off behind it. 8p

http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e27/stevo137/MemorialDay06021.jpg

piper_chuck
01-18-2010, 09:50 PM
Nice pic Stevo!

Speaking of pics, I got a few more today.
http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/picture.php?albumid=165&pictureid=962

http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/picture.php?albumid=165&pictureid=961

http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/picture.php?albumid=165&pictureid=960

piper_chuck
01-18-2010, 09:53 PM
http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/picture.php?albumid=165&pictureid=959

http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/picture.php?albumid=165&pictureid=958

Ski-me
01-18-2010, 11:03 PM
Looks like you got a good one!

thatsmrmastercraft
01-18-2010, 11:06 PM
That is a very sharp looking boat.

etduc
01-19-2010, 09:06 AM
http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/picture.php?albumid=165&pictureid=959

http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/picture.php?albumid=165&pictureid=958

Your going to have to look up, Harold's teak thread.

Nice looking boat.

"You've done well, young Skywalker."

piper_chuck
01-19-2010, 06:27 PM
Looks like you got a good one!

That is a very sharp looking boat.

Your going to have to look up, Harold's teak thread.

Nice looking boat.

"You've done well, young Skywalker."

I second that. Good news.
Thanks everyone. I'm really looking forward to getting it down here and being able to play on the water again. Of course I still need to work out those logistics and then get it insured and get a decal for using it on the lake and get the dock plans approved and permitted and get the dock parts ordered, and build the dock, all the while dealing with the house construction and all the projects I've lined up to add some sweat equity, along with work, family, exercise, etc.

Hmmm, is it July yet?

Being able to take the girls out for some time on the lake will be a good break from the above....

east tx skier
01-19-2010, 09:13 PM
Doug, for us, it was fine but if I had more than two kids, the 205 is a great combination for a family and you can still ski your arse off behind it. 8p

http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e27/stevo137/MemorialDay06021.jpg

That's why, with a closed bow, I'll stick to two kids. :)

Nice looking 205, Piper!

piper_chuck
01-19-2010, 10:47 PM
That's why, with a closed bow, I'll stick to two kids. :)

Nice looking 205, Piper!
Thanks. For us, open or closed bow doesn't matter wrt kids, two's plenty for us. ;)

coz
01-20-2010, 07:54 AM
Nice job PC, great looking ride, you gonna love that boat :headbang: looks exactly like mine only red :D

dmminfla
01-21-2010, 10:39 PM
PC, Congrat's on the 205 you won't regret it! (as I metioned in post 2) Here is a pic of our move up, with the kid's freinds( my two turn into six in a heart beat), and all the gear and we do leave tubes at the dock. We still manage to fill the boat with wake boards, knee boards and skis. Please don't blame me for the 86 redo that's the way I bought it. I'd love to own another 80's Mc one day but the 97 205 meets our needs better today. Enjoy!

piper_chuck
01-25-2010, 07:12 AM
Nice job PC, great looking ride, you gonna love that boat :headbang: looks exactly like mine only red :D

PC, Congrat's on the 205 you won't regret it! (as I metioned in post 2) Here is a pic of our move up, with the kid's freinds( my two turn into six in a heart beat), and all the gear and we do leave tubes at the dock. We still manage to fill the boat with wake boards, knee boards and skis. Please don't blame me for the 86 redo that's the way I bought it. I'd love to own another 80's Mc one day but the 97 205 meets our needs better today. Enjoy!
Thanks to both.

Planning to pickup the boat on Saturday as long as the weather's decent.

Jerseydave
01-25-2010, 08:44 AM
nice boat, piperchuck! Even though I loved my '94 190 when I had no children, with kids your choice of the 205 makes alot more sense.

Ins advise, check with www.usawaterski.com (global marine ins.) I got my best deal through them (under $400/year for my '05 X-star, $50K replacement value)

IF you play bagpipes, you have that in common with my friend on here, "lazypiper".

Best of luck with your new water toy!

-Dave

piper_chuck
01-25-2010, 01:42 PM
nice boat, piperchuck! Even though I loved my '94 190 when I had no children, with kids your choice of the 205 makes alot more sense.

Ins advise, check with www.usawaterski.com (global marine ins.) I got my best deal through them (under $400/year for my '05 X-star, $50K replacement value)

IF you play bagpipes, you have that in common with my friend on here, "lazypiper".

Best of luck with your new water toy!

-Dave
Huh, there's another piper on here? I'm temporarily retired from piping (everyone planning to attend CSM can breathe a sigh of relief knowing I won't be bringing bagpipes along), but still have them and practice occasionally.

Thanks for the insurance tip. I saw a thread in the recent past about insurance and will skim through that again too.

Jesus_Freak
01-27-2010, 12:38 PM
...I'm temporarily retired from piping (everyone planning to attend CSM can breathe a sigh of relief knowing I won't be bringing bagpipes along), but still have them and practice occasionally.

Does this imply that you have decided to go to CSM? If so, please do bring the pipes along. If I hear those playing in the distance, it may help me get a few extra buoys. :rolleyes::)

piper_chuck
01-28-2010, 09:54 AM
Does this imply that you have decided to go to CSM? If so, please do bring the pipes along. If I hear those playing in the distance, it may help me get a few extra buoys. :rolleyes::)
Yup, probably going. Just hedging a bit because at that point we'll be well into the house construction. I've got a rather extensive list of owner sweat equity projects, many of which have to be done at certain points of the construction (extra security and low voltage wiring for example). I'm going to do as much as possible during the week after work, but will also need weekend time. If one of those points is on the CSM weekend, I may end up not going.

As far as the pipes go, I'll have to see if I can make time to practice a bit...

piper_chuck
03-07-2010, 07:46 AM
Boat came home with me from Charlotte yesterday. I want to do a few things to it, wash/wax, protect the vinyl, make a list of other things to do, etc.

It's supposed to be mid-60s this afternoon so I may put it in the water and take it for a spin.

JohnE
03-07-2010, 07:50 AM
Yup, probably going. Just hedging a bit because at that point we'll be well into the house construction. I've got a rather extensive list of owner sweat equity projects, many of which have to be done at certain points of the construction (extra security and low voltage wiring for example). I'm going to do as much as possible during the week after work, but will also need weekend time. If one of those points is on the CSM weekend, I may end up not going.

As far as the pipes go, I'll have to see if I can make time to practice a bit...

Pay the electricain.....they need to eat too.:D

Seriously, if you knew what you'd be missing, you'd find a way to make this event. Especially being so close. We're 900 miles away and this will be our 4th one.

blackcreek
03-07-2010, 08:33 AM
I have a 97 205/Lt-1 that looks just like yours. I use the boat for cruising as much as skiing, you will not regret the extra seating space in the bow. It is usually a fight for the bow seats, adults or kids. The design of the ski platform is poor in my opinion as it is weak in the middle and sags. My spring project will be a good platform cleaning and beef up with some added support. I can't find many other flaws with the boat, fits my needs perfectly.

TayMC197
03-07-2010, 09:40 AM
Doug, for us, it was fine but if I had more than two kids, the 205 is a great combination for a family and you can still ski your arse off behind it. 8p

http://i36.photobucket.com/albums/e27/stevo137/MemorialDay06021.jpg

Just realized there is a really nice 190 in the picture.. You guys might want to take a look at it. :D

piper_chuck
03-07-2010, 09:42 AM
Just realized there is a really nice 190 in the picture.. You guys might want to take a look at it. :D
Wow, hadn't even noticed the boat before! :smile:

ski/hunt
03-07-2010, 10:07 AM
You can add thousands in accessories but one pretty lady can make the boat...... Perfect!!!

TayMC197
03-07-2010, 10:32 AM
I think adding accessories is cheaper in the long run

thatsmrmastercraft
03-07-2010, 10:53 AM
I think adding accessories is cheaper in the long run

Doesn't have to be, but it sure works out that way some times. Statistically about half the time.

piper_chuck
03-07-2010, 09:39 PM
Spent much of the day working on the boat. Mostly washing, waxing, and lubing up the seats per the directions found here. Also took stock of a few things I need to work on. Tomorrow I will take it to a local boat dealer to store until I can build my dock. I'll put the cover on when I get it there. Leaving uncovered for now so the carpet can dry.

You can add thousands in accessories but one pretty lady can make the boat...... Perfect!!!
Does that mean mine is double perfect?

piper_chuck
03-07-2010, 09:43 PM
And in case anyone was wondering, yes it does have a swim platform. I had it off to make it easier to wash and wax the stern. My oldest daughter insisted I put it back on so she could sit there for yet another photo op. Didn't have teak oil, so I still have some work to do on it.

piper_chuck
03-07-2010, 09:48 PM
Pay the electricain.....they need to eat too.:D

The electrician, plumber, framers, roofers, contractor, etc will be getting plenty of money. The extra things I want to add are too easy to pay the $35 per box charge.


Seriously, if you knew what you'd be missing, you'd find a way to make this event. Especially being so close. We're 900 miles away and this will be our 4th one.
Working on it. Which of the Boston burbs are you from? Lived in Needham from first to seventh grade. Then we moved to RI until I graduated from URI and moved south.

h2oskifreak
03-07-2010, 09:48 PM
And in case anyone was wondering, yes it does have a swim platform. I had it off to make it easier to wash and wax the stern. My oldest daughter insisted I put it back on so she could sit there for yet another photo op. Didn't have teak oil, so I still have some work to do on it.

That 205 looks really nice. Also, looks like the kids are pumped to see spring coming.

piper_chuck
03-07-2010, 09:55 PM
That 205 looks really nice. Also, looks like the kids are pumped to see spring coming.
Thanks. I'm pretty happy with my purchase. Yes, the kids are pumped.

My oldest really wanted to take the boat out today. I haven't had a chance to go pay the taxes and get the registration, so no boating today. Hopefully I'll get those done this week and figure out how to get the old numbers off, so we can put it in the water next weekend.

blackcreek
03-07-2010, 10:07 PM
I went to USC and dated a girl that lived on lake Murray. Spent a lot of time on that lake behind her parents boat.

91tristar190
03-07-2010, 10:10 PM
i have a tristar 190. the open bow is great for 3 kids. Mine are 13 yr. old twin boys and a 4 year old girl. I would go open bow for sure but, i would also try to to 205. you will need all of the space you can get. Good Luck!

ski/hunt
03-07-2010, 10:13 PM
Piper, as a father I must say nothing is more "perfect" than happy and excited kids. I too have become a new 205 owner and have two little ones who can't wait(just like daddy)! Find a way to make CSM I'd like to meet you and family if you all can come.

JohnE
03-08-2010, 08:23 AM
The electrician, plumber, framers, roofers, contractor, etc will be getting plenty of money. The extra things I want to add are too easy to pay the $35 per box charge.


Working on it. Which of the Boston burbs are you from? Lived in Needham from first to seventh grade. Then we moved to RI until I graduated from URI and moved south.

I was joking of course.....I'm an electrician.

I'm from Milford. But I do a lot of work in Needham. It's changed a lot since you grew up there. One of my builders is born and raised in Needham and we've talked a lot about it.

cdstukey
03-08-2010, 09:39 PM
I haven't had a chance to go pay the taxes and get the registration, so no boating today. Hopefully I'll get those done this week and figure out how to get the old numbers off, so we can put it in the water next weekend.

If they're decals, a little bit of heat from a hot air gun or blow dryer and they should peel right off.

piper_chuck
03-09-2010, 06:25 AM
If they're decals, a little bit of heat from a hot air gun or blow dryer and they should peel right off.
Thanks, I'll give the blow drier a try this weekend, assuming the rain is finished by then.

piper_chuck
03-09-2010, 06:27 AM
I was joking of course.....I'm an electrician.

I'm from Milford. But I do a lot of work in Needham. It's changed a lot since you grew up there. One of my builders is born and raised in Needham and we've talked a lot about it.
I probably wouldn't recognize the place it's been so long. I've used google earth to look up where I used to live and was able to find both houses, we moved once within Needham.

piper_chuck
03-09-2010, 06:28 AM
i have a tristar 190. the open bow is great for 3 kids. Mine are 13 yr. old twin boys and a 4 year old girl. I would go open bow for sure but, i would also try to to 205. you will need all of the space you can get. Good Luck!
Thanks, I ended up getting a 205. I think we'll be happy with it.

piper_chuck
03-09-2010, 06:32 AM
Piper, as a father I must say nothing is more "perfect" than happy and excited kids. I too have become a new 205 owner and have two little ones who can't wait(just like daddy)! Find a way to make CSM I'd like to meet you and family if you all can come.
Happy kids, and happy wife occasionally ;), is what it's all about. I've got CSM on my calendar, it'll be great meeting you and other netizens who hang out here.

CantRepeat
03-09-2010, 06:51 AM
I would say the 205 for sure. We have a 210 O/B and it's still to small most of the time.

h2oski
03-10-2010, 12:39 AM
Ive got 3 words for you. 205= resale,resale,resale