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244 vs 264

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We are in the market for a new boat. Well new to is. Going from a current crownline 210ls. Roughly 20ft of boat in water. To a 244 roughly 23 ft of boat in water or 264 roughly 25 ft of boat in water. No one has any 244 for me to look at but got on a 264 and obviously HUGE compared to my 20 fter. Will I notice a significant diff in the 244 in that 3 extra feet. Or should I really go to 264. I don't want anything too big. I still need to trailer with 1/2 ton truck. But need more room with 4-5 adults and cpl kids. Thanks

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They all shrink when you put them in the water. If you can tow the 264 and afford it, I think you'll love it. And I don't think it will be "too big" on the water.

For a more specific recommendation, it helps to know more:

- What will you do with it? Ski? Tube? Boarding? Long Cruises? Etc?

- Where will you boat - what's the water like? How rough? How often?

- Does speed matter to you? What do you expect?

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Like the water sports tubing and boarding. Not much on the cruising. But that's cause mostly of smaller boat on larger lake with bigger chop. Speed in not that important really. I rarely run wide open

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HAVENT YOU HEARD OF SHRINKAGE!! (in your George Costanza voice)

Reallly, boats do shrink in the water but on the trailer they grow...

You should notice a nice improvement in interior space over your current boat with the 244. If you take alot of "stuff" out with you, the 264 might suit you better for storage.

Towing with a 1/2 ton.... 244 is the way to go... I would get on my tow vehicle rant at this point but would drive myself further into tow vehicle depression. Seriously, I just bought a new Ram 1500 to haul ours with and I'm very disappointed. My fault here, should have done my due diligence and pulled the boat with it before buying it.

If I was wanting to haul a 264 any distance (over 20 miles one way or highway pulling) a 3/4 ton would be my choice. There may be others who disagree with that but i promise you, it would be a compromise.

The 244 impresses me with it's ride in the chop, there are some recent comments on another thread about these boats vs. Malibu's, Mastercraft's, Nautiques etc... I'm going to take the high road here and just say, there are quite a few of these boats on our lake and they all stay in the cove's. Hard for me to think about droping that kinda coin and have such limited use... anyway, I'm certain the 264 soaks up the rough even better.

Watersports, the 5.7 in the 244 is good, but you'll want more than a 5.7 in a 264. Trim Tabs on either boat are a hugh bonus, makes pulling much bettter.

JR

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Can't afford a new boat and a truck. Luckily we store our boat at lake and don't have to trailer but 1/4 mile to ramp. Good thing now I can put the crownline in the water with my wife's 4 runner

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Also, I've heard some discussions of how tight the big block 8.2 is in the 264, and the Volvo V8-380 or V8-430 will be about the size of small block. Also I believe the Volvo will outperform the equivalent HP Merc in out-of-the-hole & top speed.

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If alll you have to tow is 1/4 mile, I don't think you'll have much issue with a 1/2 ton truck. If you find the right 264, I'd say go that direction.

More room for people and stuff they bring is never a bad thing.

Also, enjoy the search, get the family involved and maybe even take a road trip to look at a boat or two.

JR

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When I first got my 256 (same hull as 264) I thought what the heck this is to big, well I am in my second year now and am very happy with the size, my kids have lots of friends and it works out great.

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HAVENT YOU HEARD OF SHRINKAGE!! (in your George Costanza voice)

Reallly, boats do shrink in the water but on the trailer they grow...

Towing with a 1/2 ton.... 244 is the way to go... I would get on my tow vehicle rant at this point but would drive myself further into tow vehicle depression. Seriously, I just bought a new Ram 1500 to haul ours with and I'm very disappointed. My fault here, should have done my due diligence and pulled the boat with it before buying it.

If I was wanting to haul a 264 any distance (over 20 miles one way or highway pulling) a 3/4 ton would be my choice. There may be others who disagree with that but i promise you, it would be a compromise.

JR

Hahaa, I remember that episode. Total embarrassment lol.

That was one of the first things I was told when I first laid eyes on my 276 - Holy crap that thing is huge! Then my buddy said it'll shrink a good ways once in the water but what you say about it growing back on the trailer is so true. A fascinating phenomenon.

I'm with you 100% on the 3/4 ton or more. I trailer the 276 to the ramp every time and I have a 2005 F-350 diesel and I felt that thing was slightly underpowered with that size boat until I changed the fuel injector module and it's been much better since. Still, I feel the only thing that will trailer that boat with complete ease is a 350 super dually! But now not only would it be a big boat with a big trailer but a huge truck too? It never ends.

BTW, I'm looking at this beauty of yours, WOW! Can I ask a few questions? Did you tint the windshield? That is so cool looking. What type of trailer is that with the killer rims including the spare? And what material are the guide posts made out of? They look like some type of foam or something soft that won't scratch the gelcoat. Is that something you can purchase or is that something you fabricated yourself? Thanks in advance and love the color, too.

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HAVENT YOU HEARD OF SHRINKAGE!! (in your George Costanza voice)

Reallly, boats do shrink in the water but on the trailer they grow...

You should notice a nice improvement in interior space over your current boat with the 244. If you take alot of "stuff" out with you, the 264 might suit you better for storage.

Towing with a 1/2 ton.... 244 is the way to go... I would get on my tow vehicle rant at this point but would drive myself further into tow vehicle depression. Seriously, I just bought a new Ram 1500 to haul ours with and I'm very disappointed. My fault here, should have done my due diligence and pulled the boat with it before buying it.

If I was wanting to haul a 264 any distance (over 20 miles one way or highway pulling) a 3/4 ton would be my choice. There may be others who disagree with that but i promise you, it would be a compromise.

The 244 impresses me with it's ride in the chop, there are some recent comments on another thread about these boats vs. Malibu's, Mastercraft's, Nautiques etc... I'm going to take the high road here and just say, there are quite a few of these boats on our lake and they all stay in the cove's. Hard for me to think about droping that kinda coin and have such limited use... anyway, I'm certain the 264 soaks up the rough even better.

Watersports, the 5.7 in the 244 is good, but you'll want more than a 5.7 in a 264. Trim Tabs on either boat are a hugh bonus, makes pulling much bettter.

JR

mustang001.jpg

That's a 2010 F150 towing a 9600lb 276 ssx.

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mustang001.jpg

That's a 2010 F150 towing a 9600lb 276 ssx.

Nice set-up. :) I'd like to add a 3rd axle to my tandem EZ Loader. Even though I'm about 400lbs below trailer weight limit, I think I would feel better with a tri-axle given I think I'll be trailering it a lot.

I did notice significant difference in towing ability ones I replaced the FICM in the F-350 turbo diesel. But the truck is older and I've used it extensively for my business hauling lumber and demolition material etc. that I feel her straining a bit going uphill with all that weight.

I take it this is before you modified the arch? Do you like it better now? You don't miss the option of being able to fold it back, Fitix? Either way, she's a beauty! BTW, did it come with the graphics or did you add them?

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Knot Today,

As an FYI, the big & beautiful 276 is really another size category up from the 264, (the 276 is 28'10"). Like the jump from the 244 to the 264, there is a jump from the 264 to 276, that the model numbers might not readily indicate.

You might find yourself open to cruising and exploring more on the 264, as it will handle the "big lake" you mention better than the 244, and way better than a 21' boat.

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Newbie to boating and the forum.

We just got a new 2013 246 SSI. we've put about 60 hours on it. Been in the ocean (inshore) and on the lake. Absolutely loving it! This boat works great for us as we have 4 teenage kids and usually have friends along for the ride. Can't speak to the open ocean but I have found this to be plenty of boat and we regularly have 10 or more aboard. Spent a week on the lake and easily pulled 3 tubes with a total of 7 kids on them. I was able to pull it 300+ miles to the lake with our Ford Expedition EL 2WD. We have the 300 hp Volvo and I have been just over 56mph with 4 people on board. The jump in cost for the 264 just didn't seem worthwhile given the increase in difficulty towing that much more boat.

Just my very novice .02.

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Hatem- Thanks for the compliments. The windows were tinted when I bought it. I always thought it was a good look when I would see a boat with the windows done but concerned it would make visibility difficult at night... It does, but does help out quite a bit in the day by creating a little more shade. The trailer is a Metal Craft, they do some custom stuff for several west coast marines... The thing looks crazy when we use the Escalade to tow it...we joke with our kids about shooting a rap video with it. To be honest, it's a little over the top for me but our kids and their friends think it's cool so if we can keep that image with them for a few more years, we're all for it...

Metal Craft did the guide posts with the dealers logo also. Covers are nylon over foam, they just slide down over the metal posts and will spin if you rub up on one. If your interested, you should be able to contact them on having some made, the posts just bolt onto the trailer and are width adjustable.

Fixit- Fantastic set up- Trailer and boat look very balanced and well sorted. Tri-axle trailer is the way to go! 276ssx has always been my favorite.

Not sure if your suggesting I said a 1/2 ton couldn't tow a boat like a 264 or for that matter a 276...? My brother-in-law likes to remind me that Tanner Faust used a F-150 Eco-Boost to tow a 727 on Top Gear (dogging me for buying that Dodge)... Anyway, never said it couldn't, just said, I wouldn't suggest it. Looks like it works for you though. Do you keep it on the trailer or in a slip?

JR

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I wont comment so much on the boat choice, both are great boats and you will be happy with whatever you choose. I will comment on the towing difference. When we bought or 264 earlier this year, I towed it several times with my 5.3 Silverado half ton. The truck did not like it and the gas mileage sucked. I had to add axle air bags to level the truck. I ended up purchasing a 3/4 ton diesel. Now I dont even know the boat is behind me.

You do not specify which truck you have and what it`s ratings are, but if you ever tow longer distances you will appreciate a 3/4 ton chassis with the 264. The heavier bigger frame, suspensions and brakes, will make a huge difference.

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I went from a Four Winns 21 foot to the 264 Xtreme. Love it. It certainly is different. I looked at the 24s, but just wanted that extra bit of space. I don't tow anymore either so with a slip at the marina the 26 made great sense. I also feel like the 26 is a perfect balance of spry on the water, but also a boat I will not outgrow anytime soon. I almost went 28, but happy to stay at 26.

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HAVENT YOU HEARD OF SHRINKAGE!! (in your George Costanza voice)

Reallly, boats do shrink in the water but on the trailer they grow...

You should notice a nice improvement in interior space over your current boat with the 244. If you take alot of "stuff" out with you, the 264 might suit you better for storage.

Towing with a 1/2 ton.... 244 is the way to go... I would get on my tow vehicle rant at this point but would drive myself further into tow vehicle depression. Seriously, I just bought a new Ram 1500 to haul ours with and I'm very disappointed. My fault here, should have done my due diligence and pulled the boat with it before buying it.

If I was wanting to haul a 264 any distance (over 20 miles one way or highway pulling) a 3/4 ton would be my choice. There may be others who disagree with that but i promise you, it would be a compromise.

The 244 impresses me with it's ride in the chop, there are some recent comments on another thread about these boats vs. Malibu's, Mastercraft's, Nautiques etc... I'm going to take the high road here and just say, there are quite a few of these boats on our lake and they all stay in the cove's. Hard for me to think about droping that kinda coin and have such limited use... anyway, I'm certain the 264 soaks up the rough even better.

Watersports, the 5.7 in the 244 is good, but you'll want more than a 5.7 in a 264. Trim Tabs on either boat are a hugh bonus, makes pulling much bettter.

JR

Gotta LOVE the shrinkage episode!

Im not quite sure I understand the absolute fear so many people have of towing boats the size of the 264. The boats dry weight is only 5400 pounds. Add trailer, fuel, toys, ice chests and you are looking at maybe an extra 2100 pounds max. If my 1/2 ton is rated to tow 10,000 pounds safely is there some reason I should be scared to tow something 2500 pounds less than the rated max? Is there something im missing? Do truck mfg's lie about their ratings? Granted a 3/4 ton diesel would pull it like a boss but is there a reason I should live in fear of using my 1/2 ton?

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Hatem, On the 08 276 the bimini's dont fold up. They have to be removed every time you use the upper tow point. This is the main reason we modified the arch. The first 3 seasons we did a ton of water sports. I've already towed tandem boarders with 7 aduts and 2 black labs on board. The graphics were on the boat when we bought it, you can add them easy enough because I had to replace the port side already. Check with Joe from Cecil Marine on the price(I think around 300 deer but i'm not positive).

JR, We keep her in a slip. It really does a nice job towing. If you look closely at the pic you'll see I have a weight distributing hitch on it. That's the only way a F150 can achieve the 11,300 lb rating with the max tow pkg. I usually only tow it 4 times a year, the beginning and end of the season and when I take it to Cecil Marine for winterization or repairs. When launching I do have to go over a bridge to Philadelphia where theres a nice big ramp to use. Cecil is about 30 miles from my house so that's not too bad either. I have thought about changing my brake setup to an electric over hydraulic actuater though. I'm not a big fan of surge brakes with 9600 lbs behind me so I take it slow and careful allowing myself plenty of distance to the car ahead of me. When we decided on the 276 I basically told my wife that if we didn't put it in a slip it was too big a boat to trailer every weekend. That being said if I did trailer every weekend I would've bought an F250 instead. But you still need a WD hitch on a stock F250 hitch to tow my boat.

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Hatem- Thanks for the compliments. The windows were tinted when I bought it. I always thought it was a good look when I would see a boat with the windows done but concerned it would make visibility difficult at night... It does, but does help out quite a bit in the day by creating a little more shade. The trailer is a Metal Craft, they do some custom stuff for several west coast marines... The thing looks crazy when we use the Escalade to tow it...we joke with our kids about shooting a rap video with it. To be honest, it's a little over the top for me but our kids and their friends think it's cool so if we can keep that image with them for a few more years, we're all for it...

JR

Hahahaa That's funny as heck! I'd pay to see that video! :D Hey, I'm with you on the kids, whatever makes them happy is usually good with us. It's all about them and these are the years they'll remember for the rest of their lives, for sure.

Metal Craft did the guide posts with the dealers logo also. Covers are nylon over foam, they just slide down over the metal posts and will spin if you rub up on one. If your interested, you should be able to contact them on having some made, the posts just bolt onto the trailer and are width adjustable.

JR

I have the posts on my traier but they have the PVC sleeve which I guess is better than bare aluminum or galvanized steel, BUT, it does leave a mark which is very bizarre. It's almost like it shaves a tiny, micro layer of that PVC and leaves it on the boat. It's very strange but you can actually grab that shaved layer with your fingernail and peal it off the gelcoat in one swipe. It's weird, but I guess it's better than a scratch but it's about as close to a scratch as can be. So those nylon/foam sleeves look like they'd be a much better option. I'll definitely be looking into them. Thanx.

Hatem, On the 08 276 the bimini's dont fold up. They have to be removed every time you use the upper tow point. This is the main reason we modified the arch. The first 3 seasons we did a ton of water sports. I've already towed tandem boarders with 7 aduts and 2 black labs on board. The graphics were on the boat when we bought it, you can add them easy enough because I had to replace the port side already. Check with Joe from Cecil Marine on the price(I think around 300 deer but i'm not positive).

JR, We keep her in a slip. It really does a nice job towing. If you look closely at the pic you'll see I have a weight distributing hitch on it. That's the only way a F150 can achieve the 11,300 lb rating with the max tow pkg. I usually only tow it 4 times a year, the beginning and end of the season and when I take it to Cecil Marine for winterization or repairs. When launching I do have to go over a bridge to Philadelphia where theres a nice big ramp to use. Cecil is about 30 miles from my house so that's not too bad either. I have thought about changing my brake setup to an electric over hydraulic actuater though. I'm not a big fan of surge brakes with 9600 lbs behind me so I take it slow and careful allowing myself plenty of distance to the car ahead of me. When we decided on the 276 I basically told my wife that if we didn't put it in a slip it was too big a boat to trailer every weekend. That being said if I did trailer every weekend I would've bought an F250 instead. But you still need a WD hitch on a stock F250 hitch to tow my boat.

You're right about the bimini top. My 2010 doesn't fold either (as per the true definition of folding) and you have to practically take the whole thing off to fold the stainless steel tubing. You have to unclip it off the arch, unzip it off the arch, remove it from all the tubing except the furthest most rail and then wrap it as best you can on that rail before covering it with that bimini cover they give you. Then fold that entire set-up towards the arch and that cover has 2 arms that slip into these two, turn-key snaps on top of the arch. Then there's only 1 tubing brace on the starboard side to secure the whole thing to the side of the arch while the portside just dangles. I have no idea why there isn't another one on the portside to brace all that tubing up nice and tight. So most of the holding pressure is on the 2 cover arms and the one starboard tube/clip. Very weird. You'd think Chaparral would have come up with a much better way to easily fold that bimini and secure it better. Oh well, small grievance. :)

With regards to that weight distribution hitch - do you need to disconnect it prior to backing down the ramp or not? I'm just wondering since it keeps that connection area between the truck and trailer nice and straight that it might be too stiff so that when you back the trailer down the ramp and it changes angles in relation to the truck, it might need disconnecting? Looks like a good thing to have if you're hauling that weight at least for long distances.

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Hahahaa That's funny as heck! I'd pay to see that video! :D Hey, I'm with you on the kids, whatever makes them happy is usually good with us. It's all about them and these are the years they'll remember for the rest of their lives, for sure.

I have the posts on my traier but they have the PVC sleeve which I guess is better than bare aluminum or galvanized steel, BUT, it does leave a mark which is very bizarre. It's almost like it shaves a tiny, micro layer of that PVC and leaves it on the boat. It's very strange but you can actually grab that shaved layer with your fingernail and peal it off the gelcoat in one swipe. It's weird, but I guess it's better than a scratch but it's about as close to a scratch as can be. So those nylon/foam sleeves look like they'd be a much better option. I'll definitely be looking into them. Thanx.

You're right about the bimini top. My 2010 doesn't fold either (as per the true definition of folding) and you have to practically take the whole thing off to fold the stainless steel tubing. You have to unclip it off the arch, unzip it off the arch, remove it from all the tubing except the furthest most rail and then wrap it as best you can on that rail before covering it with that bimini cover they give you. Then fold that entire set-up towards the arch and that cover has 2 arms that slip into these two, turn-key snaps on top of the arch. Then there's only 1 tubing brace on the starboard side to secure the whole thing to the side of the arch while the portside just dangles. I have no idea why there isn't another one on the portside to brace all that tubing up nice and tight. So most of the holding pressure is on the 2 cover arms and the one starboard tube/clip. Very weird. You'd think Chaparral would have come up with a much better way to easily fold that bimini and secure it better. Oh well, small grievance. :)

With regards to that weight distribution hitch - do you need to disconnect it prior to backing down the ramp or not? I'm just wondering since it keeps that connection area between the truck and trailer nice and straight that it might be too stiff so that when you back the trailer down the ramp and it changes angles in relation to the truck, it might need disconnecting? Looks like a good thing to have if you're hauling that weight at least for long distances.

No it doesn't keep it straight, the bars pivot where they're attached to the hitch. I've already pulled out of my driveway,backed up then pulled in straight and vice versa. Almost like a K-turn with a 34' long trailer. My whole setup is as long as a semi with a seabox on it.

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Excellent. Good to know. Thanks, Fixit. I might look into one of those WD hitches. Anything to help ease all that weight on the old, mama truck.

BTW, funny you should mention the length of your set-up. I was thinking the same thing because my truck, like yours has the 4 doors but I have an 8ft bed on mine! lol. More so for work. Feels like the thing stretches around the block lol. I don't think my trailer is as long as yours, though. Gonna have to measure it and see. 34'!? Wow, that's long!

IMG_1804_zpsfd7a9b2d.jpg

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Well, our boats are 28'10" and there's another 5' in front of the winch stand so you're at least 34' or more plus your p/u bed is 2 1/2' longer than mine. But if you have a standard hitch and check the capacity or your owners manual you'll see it's only rated for 6000 lbs I believe. The first time I towed my boat I rented a f250 from enterprise and it needed the WD hitch to achieve max towing capacity. I was told with the WD hitch, you can remove the rear wheels and pull it with just the front in 4X4 mode. Don't think I would try it though.

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