Consumer Guide: Types Of Fishing Boats

An overview of the different type of fishing boats and what type of lake they are best suited for.

Fishing boats can range in size and type from eight foot jon boats to sixty foot deep sea fishing boats. Most fishing boats on the market today are either fiberglass or aluminum, each having their own positives and negatives.

A jon boat is a small flat-bottomed boat that is suitable for small ponds and lakes. Most jon boats can handle two people with ease and when equipped with a motor, it is usually less than 10 horsepower. Most jon boats are made out of aluminum, are eight to fourteen feet in length and many are painted green or camouflaged to double as a duck hunting boat.

Regular fishing boats come in three styles: deep v, regular v or modified v. The 'v' refers to the angle and depth of the v shape on the bottom of the boat hull. This v is what determines how well the boat cuts through the water. Deep v's are suitable for deep, large lakes, as they are able to handle heavy waves with more stability. Regular v's are more suited to smaller and man made lakes as the smaller body of water is generally not as deep and the waves won't be as turbulent. The modified v boat is quickly becoming the most popular, especially in the south, because of its ability to handle speed as well.

Motors up to 200 horsepower can be attached to allow the boat to double as a speedboat, perfect for skiing or tubing. A general rule of thumb when selecting what type of bottom your boat will need is the larger the lake the deeper the v your boat will need.

Motors for fishing boats range in horsepower from five h.p. to over 200 h.p. Motors can be outboard, inboard, jet propelled or air propelled. The choice of motor will also depend on the body of water it will be used in and the personal preference of the buyer. Outboards and jet propelled are best on smaller and man made lakes, where inboards are normally used on larger lakes. Air propelled motors are used when bow fishing or traveling on lakes with heavy underwater debris.

Aluminum fishing boats can be as small as ten foot and as large as twenty four foot long. They can be painted to look like a fiberglass boat or left plain with only decals or striping to accent the look. Aluminum boats are the preferred boat for most man made lakes as they are more rugged than fiberglass and able to resist puncture from underwater trees or other debris.

Fiberglass boats are generally used in large lakes and other open bodies of waters. These fishing boats, with the exception of deep sea boats, can double as a ski boat and many even have sleeping quarters aboard. Almost all of the deep sea fishing boats manufactured today have a fiberglass hull.

All fishing boats can be equipped with live wells, fish finders, carpeting, captains chairs, fishing seats, coolers, trolling motors and just about any other fishing accessory that can be purchased.

Painted aluminum boats and fiberglass boats can come in colors to either match or compliment your vehicle and can also be purchased with matching trailers.

Research is the key to discovering which type of fishing boat is best for you. Decide first where you will be doing the majority of your fishing; will it be large lakes or small? Next, decide if you want a fiberglass or aluminum boat. Find local dealers and look at all the models available. Many boat manufacturers also have factory outlets where you can see how the boats are made. Look at all the options offered by the different manufacturers and also look to see what features come standard. The boat package you choose, in the end, will determine the success and the fun of your fishing adventures.

© High Speed Ventures 2011