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You may have seen them going down the highway. Those powerful jet boats with the name of a sponsor etched along side their sleek sides. You may have heard them as they raced across the top of the water, looking as if they could take off and fly at any moment. A jet boat is an amazing piece of machinery to watch. What sets them apart from a regular water ski boat? Power, and lots of it.
A jet boat may have a typical hull, although most of the racing jet boats are much larger in size, however it's the power source that really sets it apart.
There are several things to remember about the engine in a water ski boat. Because of better technology, many engines have 300 horsepower.
Look for dual in-line baffle type mufflers or you can build your boat with silent rider mufflers or stainless exhaust tips. If you're buying a used boat, hire a marine surveyor to inspect the engine and ensure it is functioning properly.
If you're looking for a top of the line boat that very few people will have out on the water, consider purchasing a limited edition boat. Boat manufacturers make these boats at certain milestones, such as 25 years in the business. These limited edition boats usually have a sleeker design, more features and exciting accessories. The best part is you'll have a unique piece of boat history.
Lakes and rivers have long provided a source of enjoyment to people. These natural areas provide spectacular opportunities to fish, swim and boat. Like all other things if not taken care of, we can easily destroy them.
Watersports boats, whether they are jet skis or full-sized ballast-equipped boats, can do significant harm to the lakes they use. The waves produced by these boats pummel the shoreline, eroding away dirt and eventually contaminating fish breeding areas. In places like
Another significant issue specifically with ballast-equipped boats, like
Because of the potential damage that can be caused by these boats, there is legislation being considered in some states banning the use of ballast boats. In order to responsibly own a watersports boat and protect the body of water the boat is being operated in, the owner should do the following things:
Wakeboarding has come a long way since the original Skurfer board was introduced back in the early 80s. Boarders realized that in order to up the margin of performance and to do bigger and better tricks to outdo competition, better boats were needed. Sure, any boat will pull a wakeboarder. However, in order to be competitive the boat needs to provide a large wake so that the boarder can get up in the air to do their best performance. It was discovered early on that the deeper the draft, the bigger the wave. Unfortunately, the boats that were able to make suitable waves were too slow to pull the boarder. Then came the ballast equipped boats. The entire concept of the ballast boat is to actually suck water into the boat to increase draft, while at the same time, keeping enough boat out of the water to for a suitable speed. This design took care of the problem completely.
If you want to see a great example of a wakeboarding boat, check out Malibu Boat's line of Wakesetter wakeboarding boats. These boats actually have three ballast areas to create the best waves, cruise control to allow for easier wakeboarding and once you get out of the water, it even has a hot shower available.
What to look for in a good Wakeboarding Boat:
Many people think that once they've purchased a water ski boat, they are ready to hit the water. Don't leave the dock without being prepared. There are many ski boat accessories that are absolutely necessary for a safe as well as fun boat ride. Take a look at the following checklist to see if you have everything you need for your water ski boat:
When using a tow rope on a wakeboard boat, you want to consider the rope's length because this is associated with your boat's speed and the success of your wakeboarding experience. A faster boat will be able to hand a longer rope. If you find that you are riding in the wash of the wake, try speeding up the boat or shortening the length of the rope.
Before you head out to shop for ski boats, you may want to do a little research. Whether you are shopping at a dealership, an on-line auction, or purchasing a used power boat or ski boat from an individual seller, it pays to understand that there can be quite a big difference from one ski boat to another. Consider the following features:
You should look for ski boats with a relatively flat bottom, because this creates less of a wake for skiers. Most water-skiers also want a pole close to the center of the boat and many tournament boats have a pole which to ski from. You should also find a ski boat that has an engine in the center of the boat because this will also cause less of a wake. A powerful engine will help pull the skier out of the water quicker. A ski boat needs skegs in order to keep the boat going straight, so keep an eye out for those. Skegs also help the boat when turning.
In an era of specialized motorcycles, cars and even telephones, there is no doubt that boats would follow the same trend. There are jet boats, ski boats, wakeboard boats and specialized water ski boats. If you go down to any resort area you are likely to even find boats that cater to parasailing.
Every type of boat has it own unique features that make it perfectly suited to its task. A ski boat usually has places to tie a rope, an observer position and a suitable platform for easy departure and entry. Wakeboard boats have a ballast system that allows water to be uploaded to make larger waves for the wake boarder to jump. Parasailing boats are usually very powerful boats with a large deck to the rear and a mounted winch to allow the parasailers an easy liftoff and recovery.
Specialized equipment also carries a higher price, as well. If you wait a few years, you are sometimes able to find used boats and pay quite a bit less. One thing about specialized boats is that they are usually well-made and have better quality components than die-cast boats.
Watersports boats are produced with specialized purposes in mind, but even for general pleasure use, the quality and reliability can't be matched.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|