Looking For Some Advice On A 'toon

Discussion in 'Watercraft' started by Olive bugger, Mar 30, 2012.

  1. Olive bugger Active Member

    Posts: 2,377
    Woodinville, WA
    Ratings: +408 / 0
    I had a toon at one time but it went the way of all things and I retired it. Now I am looking at either a
    float tube or a pontoon. I have pretty much narrowed it down to two items.
    The Outcast Fat cat tube and the Bucks Bag South Fork Pontoon. I am limiting myself to those two.
    I will use it mostly in small lakes like Cottage, Storm, McMurry or Rattlesnake. Perhaps Dry Falls or
    some small Eastern Washington lakes.

    If I buy a pontoon, I would perhaps float the Yak or maybe the Sky from Sultan to Monroe.

    So what do you think? Outcast Fat Cat or Bucks Bags South Fork?
  2. LCnSac Active Member

    Posts: 515
    Sacramento, CA
    Ratings: +115 / 1
    I have had a Super Fat Cat for years. Honestly, I've never liked it that much, but I always had a pontoon as well. It's only fairly comfortable (I think the older version with the hard seat is more comfortable), it is pretty slow, and you can't row it. For a float tube it's hard to beat and it's very portable. Your decision is between two completely different craft. The pontoon is more versatile as you can't take the tube in moving water, but it's heavier and takes longer to set up. Ideally you need both, but if I were to choose one for stillwater only it would be the Fat Cat simply because you can take it anywhere. If you want to use it on moving water, then there is no decision. The 'toon.

    You can get a Scadden for $600 and have the best of both worlds but you stated your limitations so I didn't go there;-)
  3. Blue Active Member

    Posts: 1,143
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Ratings: +103 / 0
    Why just those two choices if I may ask? Like LC said that is apples and oranges on the two.

    If weight is an issue, the SFC. If size is an issue, why not look at the frameless models which would give you the best of both worlds. I mean a SFC weighs 12 lbs, an Assault weighs 23lbs. Bucks Bag Southfork...45lbs.
  4. Matthew Kaphan Active Member

    Posts: 271
    Olympia, WA
    Ratings: +41 / 1
    Buy the South Fork. It'll outlast you.

    I have an old Bronco which is more or less what the South Fork is, and it's indestructible. It only has 8' toons and I take it down rivers.

    M
  5. Olive bugger Active Member

    Posts: 2,377
    Woodinville, WA
    Ratings: +408 / 0
    I thank you all for your information. I have owned both a float tube and a pontoon. I never used the pontoon in the flowing water in close to 30 years. But I would like to have that option to move to waters that I can not reach with out a boat of some sort. For my uses a pontoon would be ideal in my mind. As I stated above, most of my fishing will be on still water and small lakes. I have a larger aluminum boat for larger waters.

    My reasoning is that I can put the float tube in the back of my car and take it anywhere I want to go. Access to the water is easier with it.

    With a pontoon, I will need to take it in the back of my pu or remodel my utility trailer to haul it inflated. Then there is the launch thingy.
  6. Blue Active Member

    Posts: 1,143
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Ratings: +103 / 0
    Again, I mention the Inflatable pontoon. No assembly, just inflate.
    This is everything, Oars, seat, bags, fins:
    [IMG]

    [IMG]

    8'6" pontube. Unside handles, just step in and carry.

    Just my suggestion
  7. LCnSac Active Member

    Posts: 515
    Sacramento, CA
    Ratings: +115 / 1
    So, your concerns are not having to screw with a frame and stowage. That is where the South Fork or any framed boat presents extra work and weight consideration. Sorry, but your needs are a hand in glove fit for a frameless. Creek Co. has a new one for $600, 28 lbs. For $700 the Scadden Escape weighs just over 20 lbs. and can handle Class II. A South Fork can be had in the high $400s on Amazon on occasion and is very good; a Fat Cat runs about $400. Buy both and you're covered or buy a frameless pontoon for a little less than both and you're also covered with one craft for still and moving waters. To me this is a no brainer based on your criteria, maybe because my criteria was very similar to yours. Since I bought the Scadden Renegade I haven't touched the Fat Cat but my daughter uses it. It's always nice to have something for a guest.
  8. jessejames Flyslinger

    Posts: 1,853
    Show Low, Arizona
    Ratings: +345 / 3
    You asked a simpke question which should you choose between a fat cat and a South Fork. I wont enter into sales pitch by the Scadden sales duo. My choice would be the pontoon. I own both of your choices and the Fat Cat gets very little use.
    I like the ability to use the 'toon on moving water, and the ability to row it when windy conditions would make it hard to fish in the tube.
  9. Blue Active Member

    Posts: 1,143
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Ratings: +103 / 0


    That is why I closed with my last comment. Just my suggestion. I had a SFC as one of my first tubes. A step up from a Caddis Donut, and they are still tops in their class. Mine did look quite different..LOL
    And I had a Bucks Bag and agree with they will out last.... I sold mine 15 years ago and it is still out on the water.
  10. LCnSac Active Member

    Posts: 515
    Sacramento, CA
    Ratings: +115 / 1
    I didn't want to sound like a Scadden pitchman either, but given his criteria that and a couple of other frameless choices seem to fit his needs better than the choices he gave. He may be fixed on either of the two, but it doesn't hurt to present an alternative, no?
  11. Patrick Gould Active Member

    Posts: 2,356
    Ellensburg, WA
    Ratings: +688 / 1
    With the tube you could just strap it on you back and walk into a bunch of lakes that don't have access for any other craft, but that one looks heavy and might not be fun to carry around.

    I like to hit the water and be fishing right away so something that you have to take out of a bag and inflate and then repack when done wouldn't work for me. I'm currently using a small Zodiac that fits on top of the car.
  12. IveofIone Active Member

    Posts: 3,051
    .
    Ratings: +1,064 / 0
    Before there were 'toons there was only float tubes. They are the epitome of portability and the Super Fat Cat is one of the very best of the bunch. I have tried both the foam seat and the inflateable seat and feel that the inflateable makes for a much more ridgid boat. As an old, lightweight guy (170#) the SFC with the shoulder straps is the only way I can get into some of the walk-in lakes I go to. An added plus is that buy just releasing a little air I can put it in the trunk of my economy car and do a 200 mile round trip for a fraction of what it would cost me to take my South Fork in the pickup or the Explorer.

    But I also love my old South Fork. It is an early model with the steel painted frame and is heavy as the hubs of hell but very durable. With a good depth finder mounted and a 30# minn Kota plus rod holders and custom storage it makes for an extremely comfortable day on a big windy lake like Coffeepot. I have used it in rivers as well but never anything like whitewater.

    If you can afford it get both but I would want a SFC no matter what. It is just so easy to use.

    Ive
    Ron McNeal likes this.
  13. Blue Active Member

    Posts: 1,143
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Ratings: +103 / 0

    You do realize you can do the same with the Assault. The bag is optional. As far as packing in, yes the Assault is twice as heavy, but standing inside and using the two side handles is non taxing and quite easy. Very well balanced. I don't want to sound like a Scadden ad either, but the SFC is his design ;).
  14. Olive bugger Active Member

    Posts: 2,377
    Woodinville, WA
    Ratings: +408 / 0
    Ive, have you been reading my mind. What little I have.

    I think I will opt for the South Fork, and if at some future time, I feel I need the float tube, I will jump on that.
    It was a lot of fun floating around dry falls in my donut years ago.
    I suspect that the fish cat would be a tad different. I already have the Minn Kota and the rod holder, and all I need is the depth finder, and pump. Ah yes, a whole other quest.

    Thanks again for all of your thoughts and input. I truly appreciate your help.
  15. LCnSac Active Member

    Posts: 515
    Sacramento, CA
    Ratings: +115 / 1
    For pumps, I think a Rule Inflator/Deflator and a K-Pump are great investments. There's another $150 but your SF will inflate in about two minutes and the K-Pump will top it off and you can carry it with you.

    Depth finder--I'm a big fan of the Humminbird RF35 that you wear on your wrist. My eyesight isn't that great but even I can read it without specs. With a frame a larger mount wouldn't make much difference in portability though.
  16. Blue Active Member

    Posts: 1,143
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Ratings: +103 / 0
    AND an air pressure gauge. I am not kidding on this one. Just like a car rides better on equal air, so will a pontoon. I am exhausted now, how about you LC....LOL
  17. jessejames Flyslinger

    Posts: 1,853
    Show Low, Arizona
    Ratings: +345 / 3
    LC and blue the Scadden twins.:)With your support Dave doesn't have to pay his sponsor fee to WFF.
    You guys on the payroll?
    jesse
  18. LCnSac Active Member

    Posts: 515
    Sacramento, CA
    Ratings: +115 / 1
    No, no affiliation at all, I'm just really pleased with mine. They not be for everyone, but it fits my needs well. I'd buy another in a heartbeat.

    The other one accessory I've found useful is the William Joseph wading belt/collapsable stripping basket. If you don't like a stripping apron but want a safety net dropping reels and spools in the drink and a stripping basket too, for $32 it's a good item. Nice wading belt too. Quality is acceptable, not stellar.
  19. Patrick Gould Active Member

    Posts: 2,356
    Ellensburg, WA
    Ratings: +688 / 1
    Yeah, I shouldn't have added the part about the Zodiac, it just confused the issue at hand. I wouldn't mind having an Assault type, and would leave it inflated and ready to go for the most part.
  20. Ed Call Mumbling Moderator

    Posts: 17,396
    Kitsap Peninsula
    Ratings: +1,355 / 9
    Between those two, get the pontoon. If you expand your choices and are interested in additional information, post that here or feel free to PM. I have had a lot of fun on a lot of different craft in a lot of different situations. Give your lake and occasional river use, I'd suggest the pontoon boat.