View Full Version : 03 Outback for a family
12-14-2007, 10:25 AM
Looking at an 03 Outback with 190 hours. The price is good at $15k. This will be my first boat besides a 14 aluminum boat with a 20 hp motor. I am torn between going cheap with a 18 ft I/O and "splurging" on the Outback. My boys are 7 and 9. I would like to introduce them to skiing and wakeboarding. I never had the opportunity as a kid but have really enjoyed it the few times I have been as an adult. My wife thinks we need a lakehouse to really enjoy a boat but I won't go there in this thread.
My question how does the Outback fit in the "family boat" category? I will be doing alot of tubing and cruising until I get them up to speed on skis. I will also be training the wife to drive so I can get some ride time. Will the Outback beat us to death cruising the lake? I shouldn't get hurt to bad in resale if we decide the boat does not fit us.
12-14-2007, 11:18 AM
Sounds like the identical story I had back in 2002 when I bought my 98 Mobius (in 98 the Mobius was an open bow Outback). I bought it from a dealer in January and got it below book value. Best choice I ever made and the boat is still worth more than what I paid. The boat is a fun boat to drive, simple to work on, looks good on the water and it will make learning wakeboarding or skiing easier as you have the torque throughout the powerband. 15K sounds like a killer deal. Good luck.
12-14-2007, 12:23 PM
Hope this helps
12-14-2007, 12:23 PM
I gra gee ated up from an I/O. '88 Bayliner w/ Volvo-Penta 140 hp.
I sure do miss the gas milage of the 4 cyl, and we learned how to ski and wakeboard behind it. Plus learned a lot of do's and don'ts of owning a boat like that. Glad I had that experience be4 buying me '04 OB. Am much better prepared for the routine maintenance and service an inboard requires, not that the OB requires alot. Actually, very similar to the I/O.
If you are reasonably comfortable 'shade-treeing', the OB is (IMHO) the better choice. 15k sounds reasonable (no pics to judge by). Will hold re-sale better than the I/O, definitely.
Hope this helps
12-14-2007, 02:36 PM
My vote for the Outback as well. I started with a jetski, moved to an I/O for a couple years, and then got my '05 LSV. You'll outgrow the I/O quickly.
My youngest started skiing at 5 and wakeboarding at 7. Kids learn so fast. Go easy on the throttle when you first pull your kids.
Buying a boat was one of the best things I've ever done for my family.
12-14-2007, 06:25 PM
I come from a family which has had aboat in the family since1971 on. We have had various versions which were all a lot of fun and variing degrees of work to maintane.I/we always were envious of true skiboats whenever they were nearby.Now that i can say i actually own one, an 07 Outback I can honestly say ther really is no comparison.I learned the hard way using many varieties of underpowered and overpowered boats to ski behind and a true skiboat wins hands down on easiness to learn to ski behind. My wife enjoys driving the boat as do every other person of age i've let behind the wheel. I'm in the process of teaching my almost 16 yr old daughter to be my personal driver and at this point she is a very courteous and contiencious driver although not legal here in Canada ''YET''. She is my choice of drivers in my family. Back to the boat ,price sounds good hrs are reasonable should be in good shape if maintained ,If it works for you go for it I wish i hadn't waited this long. These boats are ''FUN''. Good luck. :D
12-14-2007, 06:28 PM
I've got a '99 Outback after moving up from an older I/O. My kids are 10 and 13. If I were you and could swing it, I'd go right to the inboard. The kids do everything behind it and you don't have that lower unit hanging out there. As far as having the wife drive goes, I could rarely get my wife to drive and pull me with the I/O as the front came up until planing out and she would freak. But she pulled me every weekend last summer with the inboard as she felt much more in control with the tighter steering and acceleration on plane. Good luck.
12-14-2007, 08:34 PM
I agree with all the posts above,except no one answered one of your questions.They are GREAT ski boats but aren't suited for a-lot of rough water.That said I don't think I'd ever own anything but a DD ski boat.I just avoid real rough water.JMHO
I agree with James they can be rough, I have had DD for over 20 years and they are actually much better than they used to be in rough water. But once you get a inboard you will never go back to anything else! If you want room then get a V drive which is a little more family oriented.
This summer we upgraded from an 18 foot I/O to the Outback.
We use this boat exclusively as a family fun boat. We keep the boat on a fairly big lake that can be very rough and do our water skiing and wakeboarding in a river nearby.
We don't feel like we have had to sacrifice anything when switching to the Outback. We chose the Outback over a V-drive because we have 3 generations of committed water ski fanatics and are just experimenting with wakeboarding. I have a personal preference for the layout of the DD boats over the V-drive boats.
This Outback feels very similar to our 17 year old "deep V" hull I/O on rough water and is vastly superior in every other respect.
Get the outback. You will not be disappointed.
12-16-2007, 06:55 AM
All us OB owners sound kinda partial, don't we?
12-16-2007, 09:45 AM
I would definitely recommend the inboards over any I/O. Just remember that DD or V drives are not good at reversing with any sort of precision control which makes docking pretty intimidating until you master the art of approach angles and judicious shifting. The OB also has a a very low freeboard and will take a wake right over the bow if you don't keep some power on.
You made me smile when you spoke about the water over the bow! I can't tell you how many times I saw the bow dip and knew a wave was coming over the windsheild! The funny part is your passengers sitting next to you are facing back and have no idea that they are about to get a major soaking!!!!
12-16-2007, 10:15 AM
I've mastered the art of soaking the girls riding in the bow.
For some reason, I find it VERY amusing
I never thought of that!!! The ole MC is a closed bow! When it dips into the water and then raises back up I watch all of this water ride across the bow and then up and over the windsheild so I know it is coming. That doesn't help much as I get soaked too. But yeah I guess now I will get to stay dry and however is sitting up there is going to get it! One thing I did notice when we test drove the Outback V was how much nicer it does ride in rough water. I actually looked for wakes and other rough water when we were out there and I was impressed. In the MC if it is rough we can only go about 15mph while cruising or it will beat you to death. There is not much of a v-hull before it goes to the flat bottom. Now that we are branching out (it used to be just me and my wife on slalom skiis on the course only) I am getting excited about a new boat. The Atlanta boat show is just a few weeks away!!!! We have our tickets and are ready to go!!!!
12-18-2007, 10:34 PM
Outback all the way, were 5 with kids 4, 6, and 7. Every one loves the ski platform for swimming, wife loves driving for me now, and is very comfy for just floating around, heck I've even gone suba diving off of the back. As far as the cruising goes, keep the speeds low and pick your time to go. Unless you're on a smaller lake like us the no problem. And if your interested in the lake house thread check out our discussion, glad to have you join in.
Glad to see you back Sled,
Have you seen the incentives for the boat show? I am having a dilema! At the Atlanta boat show when we order a OBV I will pick the board racks, the bimini top, the appearance package, and the wake plate. But I will also order a Teak deck (have always had teak and cannot change), a tower, water strainer and the one I am having trouble deciding if I want to order is the gravity one option. What are your thoughts as it is an 800 dollar option? I mean does that 1 bag really make a difference?
12-19-2007, 08:00 AM
If you have younger kids who are gonna wakeboard, get at least Gravity 1 as it will help with resale and the kids will grow into it..
When I had my OB, the wake was fun with a few folks in the boat, but never high end.. we filled up fat sacs manually when needed.. what a pain.. go for Grav I at least
12-19-2007, 08:57 AM
My '04 OB has the Grav I. Although the bag weighs just under 300# where it is positioned behind the motorbox, I think, is strategic. I do have the twin 440#'s which makes a shade over 1100# when all three are filled and gives an 'upper level intermediate' wake (if'n there is such an animal in captivity). But the Grav I definitely contributes, at least on the DD. Don't know bout the 'V', but sure it can't hurt, right?
Hope this helps
Well I am convinced now to order it with at least one bag (Gavity 1). When I test drove the boat this past summer we were mostly concerned with having too big a wake (because we like to slalom ski) but it was not bad at all. Then the salesman hit the button on the wake plate and slowed down and at this point in time I finally and fully understood what a Wakeboard Boat Wake was supposed to look like. My wife and I both went WHOAAA!!! Look at the size of that wake. And this was witout any ballast. So that was were I was coming from in trying to decide if we needed it or not. Now I guess the wake we did see isn't nothing yet, it only gets bigger. I think the first time I try to jump one on a wakeboard I will be scared!!! :shock: I am assuming that my kids will want to be all around skiers and wakeboarders!
12-22-2007, 07:05 PM
Sorry about the delay, tis the season you know. I'll post some pics later about what 3 outback owners from the midwest do when the water gets to hard to float on.
Bottom line is as everyone else has mentioned, get the system in the boat from the factory. I was checking out my buds gravity one set up thinking of how I was going to add it. Definately would have been easier to order with. Just will be more pro looking from the factory and adding the plumbing under the floor after the fact just looks like another reason for me to break off with a volley of 4 letter words about how stupid I was for not ordering the system and how could anyone design such an impossible boat to work on. Of course the later has no basis in fact but I swear those words will leave my mouth.
The other item you mentioned is the hydraulic wake plate. As has been mentioned many times before the plate is not for creating a wake but for refining it, it also helps flatten out your V-Drive wake to make it more skiable, someting I'm sure your wife will appreciate, especially if shes a lite weight like my wife(they really don't like flying through the air with the greatest of ease when they hit a large wake).
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