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Author Topic:   1999 Dauntless 18
twaler posted 06-26-2003 09:52 PM ET (US)   Profile for twaler   Send Email to twaler  
We have found the above mentioned in the "Boat Trader".
The picture looks like the console is differant from the 03 brocure.
Anyone out there has thoughts on this boat & the changes made since it was built would greatly be appreciated.


Lars Simonsen posted 06-29-2003 08:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for Lars Simonsen  Send Email to Lars Simonsen     
I have a 1998 18' Dauntless. I think that was the first year they made this boat. The 1998 through sometime in 2001 have a "transom notch" which is a pocket or tunnel in the bottom of the hull at the stern of the boat. I'm not sure what the pocket is for, but I think it makes for a faster hull. The down side of the pocket is that it makes the boat squat a bit more in the stern. Also, unless your motor is mounted right, the transom notch can cause the boat to have a lot of bow rise, and once on plane, has a tendency to porpoise.

I think as the boat "evolved" the finish improved a bit; it's my understanding that BW moved the cushion snaps to different locations to make the cushions stay in place better (my cushion on the bench seat/locker has to be in the back of my suburban when I'm towing, or it needs to be strapped down with bungee cords to keep it from blowing out while I'm trailering it.)

It's a very beamy 18 footer. As a result, tHe boat is very roomy, and very stable. However, it can also be somewhat rough in large chop.

I've recently raised my motor to the third hole, and put a 19" pitch stainless Stiletto propeller on mine, and it made a major difference in performance. Previously, I had a 17 inch pitch aluminum prop, and the motor was mounted at its lowest setting. WIth the motor raised up, and the new prop, the boat rides much higher on the water, and as a result is much smoother in rough water. Also, I picked up about 10 mph in top speed.

I took my wife and three sons through Oregon Inlet (NC) and into the Atlantic today, and despite some fairly decent chop on top of about 3 to 4 foot swells, the boat road very smoothly and comfortably.

I don't really know how the console has changed over the years. On mine, I wish the console and bench seat were a little farther apart. I like to stand when I'm piloting the boat, and even for a fairly skinny guy like me, there's not much space between the steering wheel and the bench seat.

The fuel fill port is not well located; it sits in the splashwell, facing the motor. I trailer my boat, so I just have to tilt the motor down and then I can fill it up standing at the back of the boat. If you keep it in the water and have to fill it while standing in the boat, that could be a problem, also, the tank is not well vented, so you have to monitor the tank closely as you fill it to prevent it from regurgitating fuel as you fill it.

All in all, I'm happy with the Dauntless, and find it to be a very good all around boat. I use mine for fishing, skiing, cruising, etc. It does all of those things well. I use it primarily in the Albemarle Sound and CHowan River, but live close enough to the Atlantic ocean that I do use it for nearshore fishing as often as possible. I haven't been far offshore with it, but I don't consider any 18' boat to be suitable for offshore use (except on very calm days).

BWdaunt18 posted 07-02-2003 12:09 PM ET (US)     Profile for BWdaunt18  Send Email to BWdaunt18     
I own a 2001 Dauntless 18 with a 135 Merc Optimax. My boat has the notch in the hull at the transom.

My comments and experiences are very similar to Lar's.

I am in the process of smoothing out my ride. Lars, what size engine are you running? Do you have trim tabs?

BWdaunt18 posted 07-02-2003 12:11 PM ET (US)     Profile for BWdaunt18  Send Email to BWdaunt18     

I am curious, what is your top speed? On smoooth water with a full tank and two occupants, I top out at about 42mph.


Lars Simonsen posted 07-02-2003 09:11 PM ET (US)     Profile for Lars Simonsen  Send Email to Lars Simonsen     
I also have a 135 Optimax. I put an old "Whale Tail" hydrofoil on it. It's probably the lowest tech hydrofoil ever made (basically square plate of 3/16 aluminum with two corners lopped off; it has two slight crimps in it to give it a downward "wing on each side). A friend of mine had it in his shed a gave it to me, and being the cheapo that I am, it's now bolted to my motor.

My top speed with a full tank, just me and some fishing equipment is 50 mph (a little chop helps get some air under the boat, and makes it easier to push it to top speed). With two people, (and a full tank and some fishing equipment) I probably can get about 47.

I don't have trim tabs. I've considered them, but the price has deterred me up to this point. I'm pretty satisfied with my performance, and don't see any need for them at this point. I do think that the hydrofoil on my motor helps, but I'm sure trim tabs would make an even more dramatic improvement.

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