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MI Chappy

Sunesta vs. SSi

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I purchased a 2005 Sunesta 216 about this time last year.  It is my first boat. I like it, but I have found it pounds on wakes or bigger water when the wind kicks up.  I'm currently looking at a 2006 SSi 246. According to their respective spec sheets the SSi has 22 degree deadrise.  The Sunesta has 16 degrees.  Is this substantial enough to help cut waves better?  Also, the SSi I am looking at has 450 hours on a Volvo 8.1 GXI with Duo Prop drive.  Is that a lot of hours for this engine?  Any known issues with this engine or drive?  Thanks in advance for any guidance.

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22 degrees will ride MUCH better than the 16 on the Sunesta. 

450 hours is fine, in and of itself.  Condition of the boat means more.  Good engine and drive. 

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Which DuoProp drive? Stay away from the XDP. 

brick

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Chappy

 I am going to tell you something very important , basic , and fool proof about   ANY BOAT in water choppiness.

GO OUT in the water in the exact model  or a VERY SIMILAR boat.  In the CHOPPIEST water you want to run it in............NEW or USED.

It really is that simple.      Takes some time & effort on YOUR PART..........But there is NO other way.

Piece of cake.

 

(   Length, weight, shape of hull, width, engine weight.  Size, spacing, direction of waves.......Leaving & docking in the worst conditions you expect to get caught in.  All required to make a solid & lasting selection.   )

(   Then take that boat you like riding in by yourself  Load it with people you want to carry. Run it in the crappy conditions.  )

You will be happy with the final boat for years.  :)

 

 

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 Buying a boat is like picking a steady girl friend. Cheer leaders look great.

I found a intelligent woman that I talked with for hours & 3 drinks was far superior in the long run.

Substance is better than appearance with me.

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Chap changed the Sunesta deadrise in `08 to 22 degrees. If you like the layout of the Sunesta, you might look into an `08 or newer.

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22" Dead Rise on my Sunesta.  Have never seen a drop of water over the bow and have been in 2-3' waves.  A lot of it has to do with the captain on whether you and your passengers get wet.

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Lenco trim tabs make a huge difference in ride through choppy water.  Full deflection (bow down) forces the bow down and our 244 cuts through chop well.

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When my 186 SSI with 6 ...220 pounders got into a sudden windy & 5' waves with white caps I reseated the weight around correctly 3 biggies on the rear bench. wife & I drive & seat across from me. The lightest woman was in the bow seat leaning almost to the seat cushion. I had a LOT of drive UP to raise the bow to split the waves. About 2000 rpms on the 5.0L 220 hp engine. No waves broke or wind whipped into the boat.  The bow V knocked them down & away.

45 minutes of do not fail me now.

Bow must climb up to reduce or stop waves breaking into the boat of any open bow boat.  Plan carefully what you will do on a sunny day squall.

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On July 31, 2017 at 10:33 PM, MI Chappy said:

I purchased a 2005 Sunesta 216 about this time last year.  It is my first boat. I like it, but I have found it pounds on wakes or bigger water when the wind kicks up.  I'm currently looking at a 2006 SSi 246. According to their respective spec sheets the SSi has 22 degree deadrise.  The Sunesta has 16 degrees.  Is this substantial enough to help cut waves better?  Also, the SSi I am looking at has 450 hours on a Volvo 8.1 GXI with Duo Prop drive.  Is that a lot of hours for this engine?  Any known issues with this engine or drive?  Thanks in advance for any guidance.

I upgraded from a 20'6" Tahoe to a '12 246 SSI. 20 deg dead rise to 22 deg. Never looked back, but I will say two things on this: 1) IMHO dead rise is part of the equation but boat weight and hull length have as much to do with the ride as dead rise of the hull., and 2) the first boat you buy is where you figure out what you REALLY want in a boat. For me it was a longer hull, a higher freeboard, tilt steering, and a Bravo 3 drive. My advice is to not make the decision based on ride alone but also for the total package. You might need two seasons or even three to shake out exactly what your list of "on the next boat, we want..." Will contain. 

As as for the older vs newer Sunestas, I think every mfr  figured out the deckboat vs bowrider thing after about '08 and went with deeper Vs on deckboats, so much so that you can hardly tell the difference in the bow area. This is about when the Chap "pickle fork" bow design appeared, which widens the bow for the deckboats class but incorporates the deeper V. We looked hard at the Sunsesta 244 when we bought our 246 and the decision fell on cockpit seating arrangement. The Admiral just did not like the Sunesta seating layout as much as the SSI. Either way, I'd go for the latest model Sunsesta or SSi I could afford if I were in your shoes. 

 

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Personally found the 2006 246 SSi rode very well; reason for this is it shares the same hull as the 230 and 235 SSi which in short are excellent boats; probably the best I've driven for a 25' and under length overall. Volvo 8.1L is lots; should be fun.

2009 and newer 246 SSi WT models ride really well too. Have a little more all around performance, but with the hull pad, does not provide quite as much the comfort as the older 2006 246 SSi.

HUGE difference in ride between the 2005 216 Sunesta and the 2006 246 SSi. Power and space will be a serious upgrade too. 

Certainly agree with nkdenton's assesment of what makes a good riding boat.

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My view is the  Ride Pad is to help reduce the stern staying so deep with heavier engines at WOT. It  does that.

In rough off plane water. It should have very little effect.  

Edit due to slow mind. 

My SSI 186 with 5.0L  is EXTREMELY SENSITIVE with that pad down there.  I can trim it so perfectly the ENTIRE boat at + 50 is like riding on the top of a bowling ball. Every 1 second the boat pitches back & forth. & side to side. It feels like I am about to loose control & do a roll if it is possible. I feel more like it is flying.

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