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Everything posted by Exoset

  1. Well, the more I am thinking about it, the more I tend to agree with you… which is why I am strongly considering to upgrade the whole boat, not just for the joystick obviously, but I can't think of upgrading to a boat without it. Most of the dealers here are giving me 100 K for my boat, adding 25 K we are at 125 000, I am more or less 50K away from the Four Winns or one of the 2 Regal I am targeting… I am also keeping in mind that adding the optimus 360 is an investment I will lose in term of money in my Sig...
  2. About Optimus, we are talking about 14-15 K USD including DTS and joystick. Another way to go is with Side Power with a bow and Stern Thruster (allows you to go side ways too). I will look into the Evinrude system, never heard anything about it so far. Since I am toying with the idea of upgrading there is 2 brands above the others for my needs : Regal and Four Winns Four Winns Vista 355 : Pro : Massive Express Cruiser with hard top, the Head is massive, Deadrise is 19, beam is 11.6, weight is 13 650 lbs and length is 35 ft still towable. Can be found between 170 000 and 200 000 loaded with dts/joystick either Merc or VP. Four Winns have the best cabin interior so far, hard top is the most beautiful overall, windows on the top and on the sides. Con : Access to the bow isn't easy, steps are small, bridge cushion are cheap and need to be replaced even when new https://www.guideautoweb.com/boat//specifications/four_winns/vista_series/v355/2014/ Regal 33 Express : Pro : Express Cruiser, V Berth is a queen size, aft is either a King or 2 separate single sizes (best choice for the kids), Wet bar with smoke free grill, différents configurations in the cockpit, access to the bridge is easy through large steps on the cabin's door, arch is foldable. Deadrise is 19, weight is 12 650 lbs, Length is 34 Ft by 10.4 ft wide. Easier to tow. Price is between 160 000 and 250 000. Con : Arch instead of Hard Top, hard to find even in 32 Express models, Head is smaller than Four Winns https://www.guideautoweb.com/boat//specifications/regal/express_cruisers/32_express/2014/ Regal 35 Sport Coupe : Pro : 2 queen size bed in the cabin (V Berth and AFT), same wet bar as 33 Express with grill, same versatility in the cockpit, Head is bigger than the 33 Express yet smaller than the Four Winns, Coupe model (no more canvas), A/C in the cockpit, electric sunroof, Deadrise is 19, weight is 12 900 lbs, Length is 37 Ft by 11.4 ft wide.It is the lowest on the trailer (except if the 33 express arch is folded) Con : Access to the bridge is difficult due to narrow steps, afraid to lose the freedom sensation inside the cockpit https://www.guideautoweb.com/boat//specifications/regal/sportyachts/35_sport_coupe/2014/ Funny thing is, if you asked me 5 years ago to name 2 brands, I would have probably told you Chaparral and Sea Ray, but about Chaparral I can't go with them anymore, here is why : - The 330 Sig is a good boat, but it is the smallest in this range. Including the head. - Chaparral abandoned the cruiser segment… - Not a big deal but The Chap have the flattest belly of all with 18 Deadrise - The Vberth nor the aft beds are truly Queen size beds - The Head is no different than my 290 - At best the wet bar is non existent - Poor Arrangement vs the competition - Pricey without any reason to be. About Cruiser Yacht, I saw the 350 and liked it, same for Formula 34 Performance Cruiser, but there is 2 things I can't get over with : Height and Weight. I won't be able to tow either one of these (Either above 13.6 ft High or Heavier than 15 000 lbs)boats without downsizing... But again, those are my needs, we are sleeping in the boat a lot and planning to do it even more often… what is the best suited for me isn't necessarily the same for another family :).
  3. Exoset

    Best GPS/Chartplotter

    Well that would be Garmin for me mainly because of the features, I mean, with G2 Vision charts and auto pilot you just have to pin point on your gps, and you let it go, active captain is a cool feature too, I like being able to drive the boat with my smartwatch when on the bow or even enjoy controlling the fusion stereo. I had a Lowrance HDS, cool product but more fishing oriented. For pleasure boat I would say Garmin, for sailing probably Furuno, for fishing Lowrance/Navico/BG. There is only good products nowadays but some of us have preferences :).
  4. Exoset

    Water getting in my chaparral horn.

    Bought a Dual Ongaro as well.
  5. Exoset

    Water getting in my chaparral horn.

    Kids like to use it
  6. Hey Iggy, sorry didn't saw your post yesterday :s. The 2 bars behind are for the canvas, I have made them this way in order to extend the shade, wife wanted more shade for the kids. Moreover, it adds more room when the canvas is closed, As I remember the old one were curved in the back and it was difficult if we wanted to eat in the cockpit. Love it that way
  7. Well you know, I am towing my Sig 290 behind the RAM and (Sig specs are 31 ft long by 10 ft wide and Regal spec are 34 ft long by 10.4 wide), I took all the required permits back and forth this year and it cost me around 1300 USD for both (just gave the job to J.J Keller company). I am still wondering if I will take them next year… I mean, the 290 is 1.4 ft wider than legally authorized, which means 8.4 inches on each sides. Let's face it, below the waterline you are at 8.6... so it almost invisible. My point is, with the truck you have… you are good to tow this kind of boat easy if you want to. I am doing it. And you can fold the arch for height concerns :p.
  8. Oh wow Sundancer 360 is a beast indeed Which year ? But I understand, in my case I don't have many choices in Canada, I have to make at least 1000 - 1500 miles to have a cool spot for the holidays so I don't mind a couple hundreds more, which is why we push to the Keys, but if I were closer like you, I would probably do the same. How is the water in Pensacola ? I guess better than Galveston Ho, and I was thinking, we talked about the idea of an upgrade on another thread, look at this (Same range as 330 Sig. still easily towable) :
  9. I was on Marathon area, I wanted to avoid spring breakers inn the upper keys and Key West in the lower since it is more a family trip :), I went to Looe Keys and wow man it is so destroyed down there, no comparison from 2 years ago… cristal blue water just disappears, on gulf side it is like you don't have any fish anymore... To be honest, the hole shot increased a little, I just installed Auto Trim Pro from Bennett, and it is like I never changed the arch for the hard-top. When I wrote about the modification last year I had a pretty amazing deal on a sank Sig 310 2017, but I asked Chaparral about buying a new before that and they told me that you can't buy this kind of parts but if it was possible the price was more thank 10 000 USD for a brand new (without the hatch, lights, etc). I am glad I was able to find one :p. For the SS bars, I spent a lot of time thinking about this, making different templates with different angles, SS quality (304 vs 316), etc.. when I had the right one, I went to a specialized shop and ask them to make the bars as I asked. Cost me around 1 000 USD I think, so it was the longest part but not the most expensive. The cool things is the insurance came to see the boat and since I had all the invoices, all the modifications are covered. ------------ I am now wondering if I should keep going with Seastar Optimus 360 to have DTS and Joystick, or just enjoy the boat as it is for a couple of year and then upgrade to a Regal 33 Express… because no matter how updated the boat will be, I will never be able to have the room like the Regal. Since I am confortable with towing a 10 feet wide boat I will stay in this range (33 Express is 10.4 wide, 34.4 feet long and lower than the Sig). The 35 Sport Coupe is a good choice but 11.4 ft wide… the truck will be able to tow it but on the road I don't want the stress to be too high...
  10. I was at Marathon Boat Yard here : https://marathonmarinaandresort.com/ Love the place and the staff, but it is mainly because there is not a lot of places where you can find docks with amenities and RV spots. What I dislike the most is the absence of floating docks, make it a real pain with the dogs at low tide. but other than that everything was perfect for us. I know you're boating a lot in the area, I hope we will meet somewhere one day ;). On the water I am always looking for fellow Chaparral owners
  11. Hey TP, we will catch up one day I am sure of it :p. Why sticking in Pensacola area ? Because you liked it that much or because of the distance ? Did you went to the Keys this summer in the end ? Winter is coming and it will be a long one (as usual in Canada), I will have all the time I need to make something cool and since I used the Mavic Pro a lot I will have a better material than 2 years ago :p
  12. Hey Hatem, I am good, just came back from Florida Keys where we stayed in the boat for 5 entire weeks. Let me tell you that it was way better than 2 years ago in the sig 270 ;). Even if Irma made a great deal a lot of damages.. on land and under the water... About your question, it is a 2017 310 Sig Hardtop on a Chap 290 Sig 2004 (both are 10 ft wide). About the hardtop itself… well the most difficult part was to custom made the stainless bars on the front. Next was all the electrical aspect since I wanted to have the same lights ase the 310 (with different colors). Thing is, the hardtop itself is VERY heavy, I mean, I was able to remove the arch by myself, but man… the hardtop was a whole different story, we had to be 6 Men to lift it and in the end we had to lift it with a big Forklift, but other than that we just had to bolt it in place. No fancy fiberglass work, the hardtop fit just un place, 3M Seal caulk and you're done ;). If I had to do it all over again I will, but only if I had to stick with Chaparral. Don't know if you saw the Regal 33 Express but in this range of boat, it can't be beaten in any aspect (Queen size AND King size (or both single) in the cabin, wet bar with grill, real shower, etc... If I had to upgrade that would be for a Regal 33 Express for sure I am making a video of our trip, like last year, I will post it here, in the meantime here are some pictures :
  13. Exoset

    Trailering 330

    I would recommend to put the boat on an hydraulic trailer, this way they are able to lower it and you should stay below 13.6 ft which seems to be the standard height on Interstates. I put the same hardtop as you on my 290 and believe me... you don't want to remove it, it is pretty heavy and sealed. Good luck
  14. Exoset

    Hydraulic Assist Steering on Chap SC 250

    I upgraded the steering system last year on my Sig 290 2004 and I had the same problem, lock to lock it was like 6 turns . Purged the system for any air with a big tool from seastar and it disappeared, cost a couple oh hundreds dollars. The guys told me that sometimes, depending where are the air bubbles it happens. We let his tool purging the system during 20 minutes and I went down to 3.5 lock to lock and it was also waaaay smoother.
  15. Exoset

    Keys Trip

    Hmmm I will look into it, perhaps Friday June 22 could be the best day to join you since I want to go in Miami. This way we could ride together from Key Largo to Miami. Will you launch your Sig at Miami then all your trip will be done in the boat or will you move it on the trailer every time you change of spot ?
  16. Hi guys, I have a 2017 Dodge RAM 3500 Mega Cab Dually Laramie Limited 6.7 Cummins and so far, I am very pleased with it, plenty of torque, of room inside, etc.. There is one flaw though, the tank is a 31 gal. Far too short for my needs, I mean, the truck weight 14 000 lbs empty, the boat + the trailer are about the same which means 28 K total, and I am supposed to tow all the way down to Florida with ... 31 Gallons, I guess I will have to stop at the gas station every 250 Miles... or I could replace the tank. I saw 2 company in this field of activity : Titan Fuel Tanks : Made in USA, made of High-Density Cross-Linked Polyethylene (Military Grade), lifetime warranty, lighter and stronger than the original, 50 Gal. instead of the actual 31 Gal. Price : 1249 $ http://titanfueltanks.com/products/mid-ship-fuel-tanks/dodge-mega-cab-short-bed-super-series-2013-2018-7030213 Transfer Flow : Made in USA, made of aluminized steel, Six Year/Unlimited Mile Warranty, 50 Gal. instead of the actual 31 Gal. Price : 1717.85 $ https://www.transferflow.com/shop/product/0800116381?p=1&c=10&s=p- In short, both have the same capacity but they are made of different materials, of course each company is defending his choice, this video doesn't lie though : I am well aware that I will have more hit on the Dodge or Cummins forum about that, but I wanted to share this with the crew here, just in case in case someone encounters the same problem one day. I guess I am leaning toward the Titan Fuel Tanks option, my fuel gauge should remain accurate but my DTE (Distance To Empty) will not... as the EVIC will still see a 31 Gal. Tank. I can deal with this DTE is not vital to me. Other than that we are talking of 2-3 hours of labor @home. If someone have done this before, any input will be appreciated or if interested I will post the outcome
  17. Well I will let you know around the end of April, with the 3500 AISIN I have a lot more torque than I had with the 2500, I guess I should be closer when towing, in term of consumption, compared to when I am not. Combo truck/boat is also heavier than before so I just hope to keep at least the same range than with the 2500/ Sig 270 from 2 years ago. Lanes seems narrower with the Sig 290 fat $^&, the trip will probably be a little more exhausting, I will have to be more focus. But despite all of this.. I am so eager to be in June
  18. Exoset

    Keys Trip

    During the month I will be in the Keys, I have planned to go in Miami for 2-3 days, if you guys are around between 12 and 18 June, I will try to meet you at the haulover. Let's stay in touch in this thread
  19. Exoset

    Trailer measurement needed

    I measured my Sig 290 2004 I it was 24 ft from transom to bow-eye, if it can help.
  20. Done it last week and I was waiting to see the benefit of it. I took the Titan 50 gal. tank and it is just so much better than the previous.. Jeff, I guess you have the 31 gal. like me ? With the dually I could make around 430 miles before hitting the reserve. I just done 870 miles today and fill the tank with 42 gal. on a total of 50. Which means reserve is now 8-9 gallons instead of the previous 4 gal. I saw the difference in term of material and size between the 2 tanks (they were on the ground side by side) and the Titan looks far more durable than the old one. Tank + labor cost me around 1500 USD taxes included and if I had to ? I would do it all over again :). I will let you know how it is when I will get the boat in the end of April and towing. Remember the truck weight 14 K and the boat + trailer is probably around the same which means I will probably drop to 500-600 miles before hitting the reserve ( I am never going this close of the reserve though :p) so let's say refill every 400-450 miles. Oh and you are right Jeff, I am only going on Interstates and tanking in Truck stops for 3 obvious reasons named : Length ( 64 ft), width (10 ft) and height (13.6 ft). I guess that is a problem you encounter only when trailering a cruiser. I didn't want to go with a tank in the box because I have a one piece tonneau cover which means I couldn't fill the tank, I also didn't like the idea of all the modifications you have to make to link it to the main fuel system (splitter, cut the fuel pipe, etc...) Here is why I can't fit the additional tank in the box :
  21. Exoset

    SmartCraft display freezing

    Yep I was talking about AIS, my SIMRAD is NMEA2K so simply plugged in the backbone as any device. I can be wrong but it is the AIS function who's allowing you to see the vessel name in your chartplotter, proximity alarm, etc... Have you adjusted the baud rates in the VHF and the Chartplotter ? I do know that you can add your buddies with their names etc, and then chat with them on private channels, but I didn't know about any sort of polling through this way. Sounds weird about your trim, as soon as it is plugged in digital it should show up in the VV4, did you enabled it in the settings ? It is disabled by default.
  22. Exoset

    SmartCraft display freezing

    Yeah I have the same 15 sec as you but I have 2 engines which means I start the first and it is almost already ok when the second engines come up. I read they reduce the boot time in the newer versions (502/702) but you and I didn't had enough room to fit them in our dash so... no regrets :p. Have you been able to test the eco mode ? About the VHF I like having them on the chartplotter, I wish I bought a transmit/receive instead of just a receiver though Simrad RS35. You can see others but they can't see you
  23. Exoset

    Keys Trip

    Kind of weird to quote itself but... I forgot to mention something, don't forget your decal if you are planning to boat in a US area. cost is 28-29 USD for 31 ft and more at https://dtops.cbp.dhs.gov/main/# and can be order online and shipped. If you're smaller than 30 ft, I think you just have to go in the nearest harbor when you arrive. Same thing about your VHF licence, go to : http://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/smt-gst.nsf/eng/sf08764.html and fill the IC-3020, I think you will have a small fee of 36 CAD. This way your MMSI will be known in US just in case you are in trouble or need/want to use your VHF. If you can afford it, I highly recommend an antifouling on your hull, salt water tends to be... corrosive I think those points are pretty useful, and even if it is not required, remember that US flag goes on the bow and Canadian flag on the stern not like me in the video :p.
  24. Exoset

    Help me pick a truck

    I don't think there is still bad trucks on the markets nowadays, pick the one you like the most and go for it ;). I am with @soldier4402 though, I wouldn't discard half tons too quickly. I mean a 264 Sunesta weight something like what ? 5500 lbs dry ? Add 2k of trailer even less if you go stainless with more or less 10% of 7500 lbs for your stuff which means 750 lbs. Total of 8250 lbs, I guess a half ton, no matter if is a GM, a Ford or a RAM, should be able to tow this load. My 2 cents
  25. Exoset

    Keys Trip

    Are you planning to come all the way down to Marathon ? I understood that it was too far and you didn't have enough time which is why I was planning to came in Miami to meet you guys but if you are coming to Marathon, I will just wait :p.