Pontoon or small wooden boat?

Discussion in 'Watercraft' started by jonbackman, Mar 28, 2010.

  1. jonbackman

    jonbackman Member

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    So I'm trying to come up with a one-man fishing vessel, and I've narrowed it to two choices. One is the obvious pontoon boat choice. I'm not looking for info on "WHICH TOON SHOULD I BUY?". The other option is a small wooden pram that I found plans for building online. Some of you may have seen it referred to as the portuguese-style dinghy. It requires only two pieces of marine plywood to build, and appears quite stable. Seems to me it would make a nice little fly fishing boat. The website is http://koti.kapsi.fi/hvartial/dinghy1/simboii.htm

    I'm mostly considering stillwater use, as I prefer to fish moving water from the bank. I wonder if the pontoon option would just be more realistic for transport and fishing use. Any opinions are appreciated.

    -I'm sure the easiest answer is "get one of each", but right now, that isn't an option.
     
  2. jcalderon

    jcalderon Member

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    After owning big toons, small toons, and everything innbetween, I vote hard boat hands down. To me, you can do Everything in the hard boat that you can do in the inflatable. The only difference is that you are higher and dryer in the hard boat. It is also alot
    more fun to be able to stand and see the structure that you want to fish. Also, for me the ability to bring my dog along makes all the difference in the world. Cheers
     
  3. Glenn Kramer

    Glenn Kramer New Member

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    Bottom line to me is: Do you want the capability to move the craft while your hands are on the rod. I have both, use both, but.......being able to manuever with your fins is a mighty nice feature. I also absolutely detest fishing with an indicator. My 2 cents!
     
  4. Ed Call

    Ed Call Mumbling Moderator Staff Member

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    In still water I've really loved the versitility of the toon but always wondered about sitting high and dry in a pram. The ability to use the toon, not to fish while floating, but to reach a number of banks to fish from on a river really sells me on the pontoon. You might hike into a handful of bank spots in a day. You can float to dozens, bank the boat and fish 'til you are ready to move. If you are fishing and happy, who cares what anyone thinks but you! Best of luck.
     
  5. shawn k

    shawn k Active Member

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    For fishing still water a pram with an electric motor wins hands down.
     
  6. tomc

    tomc Member

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    I was on the lake today in my peeper and it didn't matter what you were in it was wet, but my peeper does track better than my 'toons do.
    Tom C.
     
  7. Jerry Daschofsky

    Jerry Daschofsky Moderator Staff Member

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    I've owned most styles of boats out there. I am a toon guy, most of you know that. But guess what? I prefer a pram (and still have my old pram). I used mine on rivers too mind you as a one man boat pre "one man toons". But I prefer to row a pram then a toon on flat water anyday.
     
  8. yellowlab

    yellowlab Active Member

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    Im a pram guy... recently bought a toon, but haven't even rowed it yet, it might be going up for sale soon.
     
  9. Michael Nelson

    Michael Nelson Old And In The Way

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    I agree. I have a Spring Creek Hopper II with electric motor and oars and anchor setups front and rear. It is WAY easier to fish out of than my NFO Outlaw Rampage 'toon. The only reason I am selling the pram and keeping the 'toon is for ease of transport. I live up a flight of stairs in San Francisco and have had to devise a block & tackle setup to hoist the pram up and down the stairs, plus I car top the pram on top of my Honda Civic and it cuts my gas mileage in half. If I had a better place to keep the pram and a pickup to haul it in, the pram would be the CLEAR winner.
     
  10. TD

    TD Active Member

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    I have a boat and a pontoon. On lakes I always use my boat. I like to be able to stand, easily have a cup of coffee and snack while I fish, and even keep a bottle to answer nature's call. My boat is warmer and much more comfortable. I think they are both about equal when it comes to how much effort it takes to haul one and get it in the water and fishing. I can even take my boat out on the sound on calmer days. I use a small outboard to get around and get on the oars when I find an area I want to fish. I also like to share a boat with friends and family when we go together.
     
  11. Jim Wheeler

    Jim Wheeler Full time single dad and pram builder

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    I went and looked at the design from the link you supplied. Well, I'm just a dumb old boat builder but a boat that is 7'4" long and has a bottom width of 22" is not going to be stable. Our smallest pram at 7' 10" has a 39" bottom width. If you want a wood boat I would pick a hard chine pram design and if you want to go cheap find a set of Sabotina plans (now out of print) which is one of the most stable designs you will find. You could also look at Smith Brothers in Bow, WA. We build their pram in the winter when I can slow down glass prams for a bit.

    Jim Wheeler
    Spring Creek Prams
     
  12. yellowlab

    yellowlab Active Member

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    I am picking up two Smith boats this week. I had Fred and Ron refinish a 10' boat that I recently purchased with the thought that I'd keep it but ended up falling in love with an 8' boat that my buddy had them build. Smith boats are beautiful, Spring creeks aren't too bad either.. I own them both!
     
  13. Trout Master

    Trout Master Active Member

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    Admiral Yellow lab has a fleet.
     
  14. yellowlab

    yellowlab Active Member

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  15. Phil Fravel

    Phil Fravel Friendly

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    A pram definitely offers more in comfort and space. For me I prefer to have fins in the water on a pontoon. It is easier to hunt for feeding trout without having to droop a anchor every time I want to move a short distance. Along with when trolling or searching for fish it allows you to keep your fly rod in your hand, instead of a rod holder.