Valco prams?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by obiwankanobi, Oct 9, 2013.

  1. obiwankanobi Active Member

    Posts: 1,311
    Ratings: +98 / 0
    I had the opportunity to purchase a 8' Valco pram for cheap and was wondering what people think of them. It seems to be rock solid and looks very stable. I will have to add a few accessories and it should be good to go. Sadly I won't be on a lake until this spring with my current work schedule.

    Any Valco owners want to chime in?
  2. Stonefish Triploid and Humpy Hater

    Posts: 3,860
    Pipers Creek
    Ratings: +1,262 / 1
    Buy it!
    If you don't like it I'll buy it from you.
  3. Nick Clayton Active Member

    Posts: 2,863
    Ratings: +1,133 / 4
    Don't know much about them other than buy it. You dont see Valcos on the used market

    Try hitting to Yellowlab. If I recall he knows quite a bit about them
  4. nailbender Active Member

    Posts: 210
    Ratings: +34 / 0
    I think Nick is right, Yellowlab is like the curator of the pram museum. I don't own or need a valco but I'd like to get in line behind Stonefish. What makes them so much better than other 8 and 10 foot jon boats is the 40 +inch bottom. Most are 32 or 36" bottoms. Harborcraft also made a wide one but niether is in production anymore. Both usually bring a premium used in nice shape.
  5. freestoneangler Not to be confused with Freestone

    Posts: 4,015
    Edgewood, WA
    Ratings: +724 / 1
    My friend had one for nearly 20 years and the thing was a cork...never had a problem. They have a great reputation and good resale value. Have fun, be safe and get some.
  6. Irafly Active Member

    Posts: 3,615
    Everett, Washington, USA.
    Ratings: +1,052 / 1
    Should I trade my Spring Creek Pram in? Nah!
  7. Stonefish Triploid and Humpy Hater

    Posts: 3,860
    Pipers Creek
    Ratings: +1,262 / 1
    Nice score Obi
    You will really enjoy how much more stable your new craft is versus your current Spring Creek. The added width of the Valco makes a big difference.
  8. Mark Mercer Member

    Posts: 1,135
    port orchard, wa
    Ratings: +502 / 0
    I had a 13' Valco for a number of years... Damn !!! Wish I still had it, very well built aluminum boat.... Good score Obi....
  9. Don Freeman Freeman

    Posts: 1,253
    Olympia, WA
    Ratings: +206 / 0
    I had a 15' Valco Scout, which is a tiny, welded sled sort of design. It was superb, and I should have kept it. I also owned a 14' Industrial riveted model, and it was also very good. Don't have second thoughts about their products.
  10. Jim B Flyfishin' and homebrewin'....priorities ?

    Posts: 147
    Tacoma, WA
    Ratings: +28 / 0
    Just for grins, I Googled "Valco pram"....all that came up were hits for baby strollers...LOL!

    Jim B.
    Bert likes this.
  11. Dipnet aka Tim Hartman

    Posts: 901
    Silverdale, WA
    Ratings: +370 / 0
    Going back to all the years I worked at a marina, I recall Valcos as being pretty well-designed and stout boats. Of course, being on the salt we saw the larger Valcos and not prams.

    Didn't Valco also produce the Bayrunner boats? They seem to be a sweet ride also!
  12. tightlines411 Member

    Posts: 39
    SF Bay Area
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    I own 8' Valco pram. Very stable in the water. Great for lakes and slow rivers. Not good for high traffic
    boat lakes. Heavy for cartopping. My only gripe, does not row well(nose dives). I have older 3hp
    minnkota motor. If you plan on rowing only, you need to be in the near vacinity to where you want to
    fish. If you get the boat cheap, you will get your money back down the road. They are bullet proof.
    If you do alot of river drifting(back rowing), I do not think this boat was designed for that. Still water lake
    fishing is ideal(what I do). Good luck!
  13. Old Man Just an Old Man

    Posts: 21,628
    Dillon, Mt
    Ratings: +1,659 / 0
    My brother had a 10'er. Heavy as a tank and just as bulletproof.
  14. Jeff Dodd Active Member

    Posts: 1,581
    Langley, WA
    Ratings: +357 / 0
    I have wanted to try a valco Jon boat and once and a while I do see them for sale on CL. All the small valco joins I see are riveted and the bow does look pretty steep/flat as tight lines mentioned. The beam is what has me interested.

    In WA, Spokane must have more Jon boats than any other location. I look at their CL ads on occasion for beamy Jon boats like the valco you got. Good score!

    Look forward to your review or seeing it on the water.
  15. yellowlab Active Member

    Posts: 2,605
    In a van... down by the river, WA
    Ratings: +89 / 8

    That was my experience with Valco prams. Not enough fore to aft rocker and the bow would push alot of water versus glide over it. Stable but I'd rather not have cross seat stringers in a pram if possible.
  16. yellowlab Active Member

    Posts: 2,605
    In a van... down by the river, WA
    Ratings: +89 / 8

    I also owned the Bayrunner Baja 17' Center Console boat. I liked it better than I did the pram. Fully welded, flat floors, hidden cleats under the wide gunnels, 7' beam, high freeboard, full high bow rail, super light weight to tow, launch and fish. Got on plane with a Honda 50 Hp 4-stroke and sipped the fuel, a nice no hassle set up. I'd gladly own another one if it came along...

    Attached Files:

  17. Greg Armstrong Active Member

    Posts: 1,026
    Ratings: +342 / 0
    Yep, I think Valco and Bayrunner were produced by the same company.

    I had a 15' Bayrunner. Nice high flared bow and all welded. It had a tiller steer 25 HP on the transom.
    I found that with just myself in the boat and with a little side wind catching that nice high flared bow at planing speed, the boat would get real squirrely, real fast. Almost lost it a couple of times out in the Straits. It wasn't an issue when I had someone with me sitting in the front for trim. I tried trimming it, and adding what weight I had to the bow to counter it while out there on my own, but it was enough of a concern that I sold the boat.

    The Valco pram looks like a winner for its intended use to me though.