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Author Topic:   Ventura--Anyone have one?
jimh posted 06-22-2000 12:50 AM ET (US)   Profile for jimh   Send Email to jimh  
We have this running battle in my family about what the next boat should be. I say. "Outrage" and my wife Chris ways "Ventura."

I always tell her that I've never, ever, seen a Ventura, except in catalogues and at boat shows. But never on the water!

Does anyone out there have a Ventura?


lhg posted 06-22-2000 01:51 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Jim: At the risk of becoming an enemy of your wife before ever meeting her, I should say that if you buy one I'll never speak to you again!! You are much too experienced an offshore sailor & boater to be ever caught in one of those! As you know, this is Sea Ray's effort to make sure they cover the bow rider market, of which they were one of the inventors, using the Whaler brand, since Sea Ray themselves doesn't offer much in small boats these days. The boat, I'm sure, is still a fine Whaler unsinkable hull, but it is strictly a "booze & cruise" fair weather day boat model, with extremely limited offshore, and no cruising or fishing, capability, and not in the fine tradition of rugged Boston Whalering! I'm also told the Dealers, except for inland lake boating, can't give them away, which is why you don't see many. The pre-Reebok, Boston Whaler Company would never have offered such a model, always advertizing that Whalers have never attempted to be floating automobiles.
dgp posted 06-22-2000 04:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for dgp  Send Email to dgp     
Jim..I'm sure one of our forum members has a Pontiac Ventura. That one might qualify as a classic! Don
bigz posted 06-23-2000 06:13 AM ET (US)     Profile for bigz    
James --- take a look see at this Sea Ray '90
on eBay today --- see a resemblance to your Ventura === chuckle


Bill D posted 06-23-2000 07:16 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bill D  Send Email to Bill D     
Jim, I'd have to agree with Larry. I had a friend who had a Hydro-Sports version of the Ventura style of boats. He bought it because his wife thought she'd go out in it more often than a CC. It didn't work out that way and he sold it pretty quick. I would have bought the Outrage if it were just me, but I
have to say the cuddy (Conquest) has worked out better than I thought. I do lose pure fishing space to the bow. But the cabin with the head and a place to get out of the sun and weather has really worked out nice. My wife will go out with me a lot more often than she used to with the old Whaler. So for me the trade off in "fishablity" is more than made up for by having her enjoy the boat as much as I do. Also the bow deck is plenty flat for casting to fish and actually helps due to the height advantage.
PDM posted 06-23-2000 10:51 AM ET (US)     Profile for PDM    
I would like to add my two cents to this Ventura vs. Outrage debate because I just struggled with the same choice. The new Outrage and the new Ventura are both nice boats. I think they may both be the same hull design so basically the only difference is the layout. I actually bought a Dauntless bowrider which I know is a different boat but I still had the bowrider vs. cc debate. In my case which sounds like everyone else, my girlfriend and my brother's wife both liked the seating and sunning areas which make the Ventura a nice lounge around and ski boat which is what we do 50% of the time. On the other hand its not a terrible fishing boat because you have plenty of open space. Sure its not a fishing machine but life is full of compromises. I think you should buy the boat that fits your lifestyle. When it comes right down to it, a Whaler is a Whaler.

The Dauntless/Ventura is fairly popular boat on Cape Cod where I tend to roam so I wasn't reluctant to buy one. No regrets so far and I'm looking forward to years of enjoyment from my boat.

lhg posted 06-23-2000 12:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
My comments on the Ventura were only meant for Jim H, and what limited information I have on his boating interests. Not meant to offend others who could have very different reasons for buying a different style of Boston Whaler than I might have. The company is obviously trying to appeal to a wider range of buyers than in prior years. I should really learn to say less and be a lot less opinionated. I'll keep working on it, in the interest of making this a better forum in which to participate!
Barry posted 06-23-2000 08:59 PM ET (US)     Profile for Barry  Send Email to Barry     
How big a boat are you considering? What about a Revenge?
jimh posted 06-24-2000 01:25 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Permission to extend my remarks....

Last fall I dragged Chris to the big in-water boat show at Metro-Beach (Lake St. Clair).

We hopped on a variety of Whalers in the water. I would get behind the center console and hold on to the wheel and throttle(s) and exclaim, "Man, this a a great boat."

And Chris would stand there and say, "Where do you expect me to sit for four hours?"

I had to admit, on many center console boats she had a valid point.

"If you think I am going to sit on a cooler for four hours, you're wrong," she'd say. I could see her point.

Then we got to the VENTURA. "Here," says Chris, "is a boat I can sit in. She liked the seats, the bow seating, the whole boat.

It was September and the dealer still had not sold this VENTURA; that's why he dragged it to the boat show.

[ASIDE: I was back at this same dealer last weekend and he has sold his entire inventory of 2000 Whalers already, except for one 22-Duantless, one 23-Conquest, and one 11-foot Standard. I am not counting a few 13-Sports still coming, but he sold three of them that week.]

I was pretty less-than-excited by the VENTURA. I don't think it is the boat for me.

But I do really enjoy boating with Chris along, and we probably do more boating together, far more, than I do alone.

So finding something that is comfortable for her is pretty high on the list of priorities.

Ultimately, what kept us from jumping on the Ventura was the price. I don't remember exactly what they were asking for it, but I kept thinking, "Am I going to have $30,000 more fun in this boat than the one I have already?"

And to get back to the original question, I guess no one has a VENTURA out there, right?

Barry posted 06-24-2000 05:52 PM ET (US)     Profile for Barry  Send Email to Barry     
Sounds like we're in the same boat. Or at least looking at the same boat for the same reasons 8-)

I've been looking for a BW. I've got 2 boys 9 and 11 that love to fish and would love to learn how to water ski. I had a generic 19' fiberglass bowrider, similar in layout to the 18 Ventura, but got rid of it years ago when the kids were just tots. Now I've got the bug bad.

I was initially considering a Montauk or an Outrage (17, 18 or 22). However, this summer we just bought my wife a new Olds Silhoutte minivan so now I've been mainly been looking at the Montauk and smaller Outrages (17 and 18) due to towing capacity. The van is rated at 3500. I already had a hitch installed!

I recently found a nice Montauk through this forum but when I showed my wife the photos her response was "you expect me to spend the day on the lake in THAT?" Guess she's used to the "luxury" of the old bowrider that we boated in for 10 years.

Meanwhile I've wanted a BW every since I lived in Wilmington, NC from '75-'77. I spent a lot of time on the water then. Did a lot of skiing, fishing and diving. I remember one time, surfacing from a dive 40 miles out. There parked next to the 42' Post we were chartering was a 17' Montauk. Admittedly it was a gorgeous day, the weather was great and the ocean was flat. I was still impressed!

And I still think the Montauk would be fine now. While the Ventura looks like a nice boat, the only model I could consider would be the 16' due to the weight. Alot more money for a little more luxury. Besides, I don't think you could stand up and drive the 16 Ventura!

Anyway, so I still don't have a BW. I'm heading up to Georgian Bay this Friday with the boys for a week of fishing and have been forced to borrow a friend's 16' bass boat. 8-(

dave_maggio posted 06-26-2000 11:19 AM ET (US)     Profile for dave_maggio  Send Email to dave_maggio     
Have either of you looked at or for a used 17' Dauntless bowrider? Are they ok running boats? I keep seeing ads for 95's and 96's selling for 16K to 18K.

Sidenote: I guess that I got lucky on this one, my wife liked the center console model. Hahaha...


whalernut posted 06-26-2000 04:59 PM ET (US)     Profile for whalernut  Send Email to whalernut     
Dave, I have test drove a 95` `17 Dauntless. I really don`t like bowriders, but the boat handled the waves of Lale Erie very well. It has the Acutrack hull, so it is a deep V. It had a 130h.p. Merc. on it and it really moved! My wife loved it and she wanted it, but I wanted a Montauk or a `17 GLS, so she got mad and wouldn`t sign the loan form. We got into it pretty good, but the bottom line is, I feel it is a good all around design. The only thing I didn`t like about the boat was the steering, it had tilt steering(they all came with tilt steering), it was kind of sloppy, too much play. As for used prices, that boat was going new in Ohio for $17,500. So I don`t see the used prices being as high as was mentioned? Maybee it is all location,location,location! Regards-JACK.
dave_maggio posted 06-27-2000 08:34 AM ET (US)     Profile for dave_maggio  Send Email to dave_maggio     
Jack, I was just offering a used 17' Dauntless up as an "inexpensive" (all things are relative right???) alternative to a new ventura. Personally, I would have a tough time swallowing a 30K price tag for a new 18' bowrider especially when I have the feeling that the 17' hull might be better in a sea than the 18' hull. FYI, I'm personally not a big fan of bowriders either. -Dave
Ed Stone posted 07-08-2000 11:22 PM ET (US)     Profile for Ed Stone  Send Email to Ed Stone     
Hey Jimh,
So what's the deal are you buying the ventura?I for one am wondering what year and size whaler you will purchase.there is no way you would buy a Neo-classic.What size vehicle are you towing with?
Good luck!
RFK posted 08-08-2000 03:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for RFK  Send Email to RFK     
Please help me out on language. Several people have used the phrase Dauntlass bow-rider. Isn't that a Ventura? I thought Dauntlass only came in a cc format.
bigz posted 08-08-2000 04:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for bigz    
You are 100% correct --

Dauntless = center console

Ventura = walk through bow rider ---

Things occasionally get a little confusing around here don't yeah know


dgp posted 08-08-2000 04:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for dgp  Send Email to dgp     
bigz, in the years '95-97 the Dauntless 17 and Dauntless 20 were both dual console bow rider models. I formerly owned a '97 Dauntless 17.
RFK posted 08-08-2000 09:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for RFK  Send Email to RFK     
dgp, thank you for the correction. I got out my old brochures and sure enough the walk through was there.
bigz posted 08-09-2000 06:33 AM ET (US)     Profile for bigz    

Sorry, I was stating the fact of what is available today --- misunderstood the question, that it was referring to the early years of these models.


Ed Stone posted 08-09-2000 08:11 AM ET (US)     Profile for Ed Stone  Send Email to Ed Stone     
Neo-classic bowrider>ventura
Classic bowrider>GTX
How many years did the classic bowrider last?
jimh posted 08-10-2000 01:06 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
I started this topic somewhat as a rhetorical question; I wasn't really going to go buy a Ventura.

And, in fact, I didn't buy one! But they are still interesting boats, and thanks for the info the the older "GTX" hull, which I had not heard of before.


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