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Author Topic:   Comparison between Boston Whaler and Maritime Skiff
Seagull6 posted 01-19-2004 07:23 PM ET (US)   Profile for Seagull6   Send Email to Seagull6  
In the process of checking deals/features on Whalers on the web, in magazines and at boatshows, I came across the Maritime Skiff website and I like the hardtop console on their 23 Patriot ( This model also has a small berth and porta-potti down below. With a 150 HP Suzuki 4-stroke the 23P runs about $45K. The company owner, Paul Hureau, used to work for the BW commercial division in Massachusetts before they moved to FL.

Can anyone here compare Boston Whaler to Maritime Skiff boats? For starters, I'm guessing that the Maritime Skiffs don't have the resale of Boston Whalers. There's one curious thing about the Maritime Skiffs; the hulls and consoles are manufactured by North End Composites in Brooklin, ME and then go through final assembly in Massacusetts.

Any information or comparisons would be appreciated.

Chuck Gullage

lhg posted 01-19-2004 07:32 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Have no idea what these boats are, and have never seen one.

But for that kind of money I'd look real hard at a new Whaler 22 Guardian with same engine.

This seems to be our week for other boat comparisons, and this site is really not best place to ask for those. All you'll get is Whaler, Whaler & Whaler around here. So far we've seen Mako, Scout, Sea Craft, Regulator, etc, all by new registrants. None fared very well. What's next?

bricknj posted 01-19-2004 07:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for bricknj    
They sell these in Brick ironically enough.

I have looked at them and considered the 20 Patriot before I settled on my boat, a 190 Nantucket. But the 20 Patriot actually is more of an apples to apples comparison with a 21 Outrage size-wise (I believe the 20 P is 20.5 feet or so.

The features that can be attributed to the 20-P are an unsinkable, bulletproof, quick planing hull that can fly on little horsepower due to its light weight. That is an advantage, but can also be a disadvantage if you like to troll (the wind can move/take it.

The 21 Outrage, and the 190 Nantucket, for that matter are substantially heavier boats and more "stable riding." The Nantucket is about 2050 pounds, 18 feet 10 inches, and 8 foot beam for example, while the 20P is 1700 lbs, 20 feet 7 inches, and 7 feet 6 inches beam.

Which do you prefer? I guess it depends on your intended use and where you will boat. I would imagine fans of the older legendary classic and elegant whalers might very well embrace the MSkiffs. I like them and was very tempted.

I pulled away after seeing the boats because 1) unsure of resale if/when I trade up 2) the interior of the boat is..well...a skiff. unfinshed if you may. wouldnt't bother many, yet it kind of bugged me. 3)the price. While you would think Mskiffs 20P would be much cheaper than Whalers I found that not to be the case. The great thing about the Mskiffs is you start with a bare hull and choose ALL of your options. IE that neat console with the top you saw. When you add it all in it adds up in a shocking way. The 20-P that I looked at with trailer was about 32k. I went Whaler.

Good luck Chuck

RonB posted 01-19-2004 09:11 PM ET (US)     Profile for RonB  Send Email to RonB     

I think we are seeing a recent increase in talk of other boats for a couple of reasons. One, it's cold out up here (Northeast) and we have nothing better to do than size up our Whalers with other Whalers or other brands. To add fuel to that argument, a lot of us have gone to boat shows recently which are pretty popular this time of year.

Deep down, although some of us talk (or write about it) I think we would be disappointed in moving to another brand. I just mentioned Scout in another thread as I saw a fellow CW member is looking at one, but after posting, I thought if that is the route I'd like to go (more family oriented than my post classic Outrage) I'd probably look at a Ventura or small Conquest.

I say it's cabin fever!


NFORKFISHEAD posted 01-19-2004 10:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for NFORKFISHEAD  Send Email to NFORKFISHEAD     
Go to and type in maritime skiff in their search engine. You'll find a bunch of information on them. Good luck.
cape_rover posted 01-20-2004 06:41 AM ET (US)     Profile for cape_rover  Send Email to cape_rover     
I've heard the Maritime Skiff (20') is squarelly in a following sea but I have not experineced it myself.
jimh posted 01-20-2004 09:23 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
The MARITIME SKIFF brand has a strong Boston Whaler heritage. See:

for the full story. If you are local to that area they may be an alternative, but I don't think you'll find them too far afield from New England.

If they were made down the street from me and attractively priced, I would certainly give them a look.

tbyrne posted 01-21-2004 11:02 AM ET (US)     Profile for tbyrne    
My $.02:

They are well thought out, but their interior fit and finish is like that found on a workboat. They are made with almost a rolled edge gunwale, have a rough splatter coated interior and plenty of plywood in the decking. A Whaler's fit and finish is far superior (finished hatches, molded-in nonskid, sturdier consoles, etc.).

When you start adding options, their prices quickly get beyond those of a workboat. There's nothing wrong with their functional interiors - I just think their prices are too high for what you get.

andygere posted 01-21-2004 01:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
A regular forum member, Hardensheetmetal, owns or has owned a Maritime skiff. He'd be an excellent contact for information on these boats, especially in comparing them to Whalers.
bwh12 posted 01-22-2004 04:42 PM ET (US)     Profile for bwh12  Send Email to bwh12     
I owned an 18' Maritime Skiff with a 70 hp 4-stroke two years ago. I sold it when I moved, resale was not a problem in New England. The best features of the boat were ability to plane at low speeds, and very dry. I did not notice any handling deficiencies, and took it up to 2
30 miles offshore. The fuel injected engine (OMC by Suzuki) was just great. I would not go back to a two stroke if I bought a new boat or were to re-power my 13' sport.

Dislikes? I modified the standard pilot seat by adding the reversible locking seat back from a Dauntless. This is a very nice feature used by Whaler and Grady in their small boats. I asked Maritime if they would add this option and they told me "maybe", but I still don't see it on their web site, too bad. Also, the rigging tunnel was too close to the boat centerline, making the cable steering unnecessarily stiff. The 25 gallon fuel tank under the console had no filler opening or overboard vent, which, although not strange to whaler owners, was surprising coming from the manufacturer.

Yes it is expensive when considering the no frills rolled edge construction and non-gel coat interior. On the other hand, this is precisely why you can configure the interior any way you want. Still, at the time I bought it, it was a lot less than a new 18' Whaler. I'm not sure I would buy a new Maritime again, of for that matter a new Whaler. But a used one of either make would be nice. Just my two cents.

hardensheetmetal posted 01-22-2004 05:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for hardensheetmetal  Send Email to hardensheetmetal     

I owned a MS 2090 and now own a 1690. The 2090, which is the lower end model, had one version of thier pilot house. The boats are well built, and can handle some pretty rough water. I had a hard time dunking the bow of the boat in 4'-6' rollers. Most of what has already been said is correct. I liked the boat for its utilitarian interior, which is a rough speckled gelcoat, very easy to cleanup. The boat was light and got right up on plane with only 90hp (as does the 16 with a 50). I found that the 16 rode a bit nicer than my 17 Montauk.

I bought my 2000 model 2090 used in 2001 for $16,000.00 with an extended warranty from a dealer and sold it in 2002 for $15,000.00. I purchased my 1690 just to have something to fish from. I paid about $10,000 for that, I believe new the same boat with a 50 Honda and trailer would run around $16,000.00. I think they hold their value as well as any other boat, especially around New England as JimH pointed out.

I have spoken to Paul and Bev at several boat shows, they are nice people. Paul has some good stories about working at Whaler.

The fact that NE Composites makes the hulls is not that odd, I believe thay do the tooling for molds and make hulls for quiate a few manufacturers (including Grady White and Viking) as well as 29' Back Cove Yachts (which are actually the smaller boats from Sabreline).


bricknj posted 01-23-2004 10:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for bricknj    

This is posted for sale on another website.

1999 Maritime Skiff 2090 (loa of 20'6")

Maritime Skiff front casting platform w/ lockable storage
KentFab Marine custom leaning post and rear casting platform
26 gallon gas tank
MS Center Console w/ windshield and grab rail
MS cushion set (Bow cushion & CC seat)
Ritchie Compass
Lowrance - Eagle Strata 128 Plus Fish finder with speed and temperature
Apelco Raytheon Marine VHF 4500plus Waterproof Radio
2 Batteries with A/B switch (locking)
Fly rod holders (4 upright, 2 vertical)
8 standard rod holders
Accessory plug in console (12 V)
94 Quart Igloo cooler mounts under leaning post (cooler included)
Stainless Side rails (Maritime Skiff)

1999 Honda 90 four stroke engine
Racor fuel filter
Stainless Steel Prop
Spare Prop
Always professionally maintained, recently tuned

1999 Caulkins Bunk Trailer
Full Spare tire mounted on trailer
2 extra hubs (new in box)
Guide on posts for easy loading

Price is $18,000. Email at

Thanks, Greg

BillD posted 01-28-2004 02:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for BillD  Send Email to BillD     
I looked long and hard at the Maritime Skiff 18' model 2 years ago before buying a 2000 Outrage 18.

What everyone else says is true about them.

They are great boats. They are designed well and handle well. Their light weight makes them fly.

The downfall for me was the price / fit and finish combination. For esentially the same money I could buy a 2 year old Whaler with better fit / finish, and all the electronics that the original owner installed.

When they first came out they had a lower price point that made them much more attractive.

Many fishing guides and fly fishermen up here in New England love them for the easy trailer ability, and the fact that they can be completely customized by the dealer or by themselves.

A friend of mine who fly fishes had retactable cleats and a casting platform installed, difficult to do on a regular production boat.

jaccoserv posted 02-06-2004 02:15 PM ET (US)     Profile for jaccoserv  Send Email to jaccoserv     
One thing I can tell you about North End Composites(I think it may be known as Northeast Composites) in Maine, they manufacture VERY high quality vessels such as Sabre and Sabreline sailboats and downeast-style cruisers and the new Back Cove 29. So, if nothing else, the boat is bulletproof and the finnish most likely outstanding.
myakka posted 07-12-2004 08:22 PM ET (US)     Profile for myakka  Send Email to myakka     
I dont know how useful this post will be, this thread being a few months old and all. Maritine skiffs are assembled on Oak st in pembroke Ma., across the street from Ritchie compass. The custom welding company they use is Kentfab. They are located across the street from the old Whaler plant in Norwell(2nd plant, the Rockland plant was about 10 min. away)
djdris posted 03-11-2006 11:09 PM ET (US)     Profile for djdris  Send Email to djdris     

I almost find it funny ( we all get caught up in the " brand loyalty" that we have for our boats) on how brainwashed some of us are when it comes to our boats

The current Boston Whalers have little in commmon with that old company that was swallowed by Brunswick marine. The influence of other Brunswick hull companies like Sea ray slowly turned the old traditional whaler - that so many of us were devoted to - in to a boat that was NOT the whaler that we knew and loved. Even the EPA ( with toxic issues on the foam construction) had an impact on the whaler change and if you search a website by Mr David Pascoe who shows some alarming contemporary construction problems ( the guts of a Sea Ray torn open after Katrina hit ) with corporations that are now looking to build hulls with less fiberglass and more light weight composites - will give us all some doubt if we are being buying "baylners" and not whalers.
These are not the same boats your father took out to the canyons in nasty weather and one should think twice before re-finnancing the house to buy a boat that is part of the largest marine corporation in the world.

Sal A posted 03-12-2006 05:34 AM ET (US)     Profile for Sal A  Send Email to Sal A     
Thanks for clearing that up. You just saved ne a ton of dough. Where can I send my appreciation?
fla656 posted 03-14-2006 12:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for fla656  Send Email to fla656     
Want a real whaler, buy a CPD whaler, just my thought...
highanddry posted 03-14-2006 10:39 PM ET (US)     Profile for highanddry  Send Email to highanddry     
"The current Boston Whalers have little in commmon with that old company that was swallowed by Brunswick marine. The influence of other Brunswick hull companies like Sea ray slowly turned the old traditional whaler - that so many of us were devoted to - in to a boat that was NOT the whaler that we knew and loved. Even the EPA ( with toxic issues on the foam construction) had an impact on the whaler change and if you search a website by Mr David Pascoe who shows some alarming contemporary construction problems ( the guts of a Sea Ray torn open after Katrina hit ) with corporations that are now looking to build hulls with less fiberglass and more light weight composites - will give us all some doubt if we are being buying "baylners" and not whalers.
These are not the same boats your father took out to the canyons in nasty weather and one should think twice before re-finnancing the house to buy a boat that is part of the largest marine corporation in the world."

The above is total BS. Further, the artical is about SeaRay and mostly concerned with large boats over thrity feet and not the smaller power skiffs like Boston Whalers new and old.
The real difference is that new Boston Whalers are better, stronger and more seaworthy and this just chaps your a**. Clearly, larger boats contructed of foam begin to see diminishing returns in stregth to bouyancy, weight issues and foam to glass ratios that are not conducive to durability. This is not the case with trailer size Boston Whaler boats of any era.
This is of the same sort of trash as Mercury engine bashing and OptiMax bashing so prevelant here.
Fact is that so called "classic" Boston Whalers have as much "hamburger helper" as any new Boston Whaler and -- laughing--it is mostly water logged.
Meanwhiel, if your in the market for a fifty footer, don't get a hamburger helper foam hull.
So, those hulls at Birbarie Marine video clips with the bulldozer on top of them are what--exactly?

djdris posted 03-26-2006 02:21 AM ET (US)     Profile for djdris  Send Email to djdris     

Well I guess you just cleared that all up and showed everyone that I have no idea what I am writing about

I have always been a Whaler "fan" and it is obvious that the real " agenda" comes from you when you bring the Merc Optimax into the discussion ( probably a far superior engine than any Yamaha in your marine experience as well)

If you believe that that current whaler hull design ( most obvious don't require an engineering degree) with its higher freeboard, wider beam and higher deadrise, are basically the same as the classic hulls there is no point in further discussion

I don't mean to harm the Whaler name but do some research and you might learn that the basic materials, construction techiniques ( which were unique to whaler) and bonding methods have changed and are much more " mainstream" ( meaning closer to other hulls in the Brunswick family as well as other competitors) than those whalers of the past.

I am not raining on the whaler parade here but pointing out some facts. I still believe they are good boats B Whaler is a long ways from that small private company in Rockland Ma .... Part is due to marketing pressures and part is due to the Brunswick corp changes ( your mercury Optimax which is part of the " Brunwick package" gets the job done too but there are other options.........
(( how many top hulls that are not Brunswick products come factory rigged with these outboards ? not many))

don't mean to upset the followers here. ( have owned my share of Whalers and others)
if you want to spend your money on pure emotion - then buy the whaler/merc

Lars Simonsen posted 03-26-2006 03:32 PM ET (US)     Profile for Lars Simonsen  Send Email to Lars Simonsen     
Clearly, the design of the modern hulls is different than the classics, and which is better or more desireable is a legitimate subject for debate.

The construction of the modern hulls, however, is not terribly different than the classics, and in some respects is better. I've owned both a classic and a "non classic" whaler, and I don't think either hull was better than the other in terms of construction. Both were built like tanks, unsinkable, with excellent fit and finish. Admittedly, the hardware installed on the modern hull was cheaper in some ways than the classic (the reversible pilot seat being the primary example, and the lack of teak, which is another debatable change).

My understanding is that the modern hulls have some hand laid fiberglass, which the "classic" hulls do not. Many would agree that this is an improvement. Also, the modern hulls are heavier due, apparently, to the more substantial fiberglass skin and denser foam.

In my opinion, the classics are the more beautiful boats. But there's no doubt in my mind that the new hulls equal or exceed the classics in terms of construction.

Having said that (and in a lame attempt to keep to the subject at hand) I don't know anything about Maritime Skiffs, but I'm proud to own a modern boston whaler (with an optimax, I might add).

jimh posted 03-26-2006 05:28 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
A visit to the Boston Whaler factory will permit first-hand observation of the careful engineering and fabrication which goes into current Boston Whaler boats. The Unibond™ construction technique remains the same, and is probably accomplished today with greater uniformity and consistency than in the past.

The only drawback to a new Whaler is the hefty price. In their day, however, the classic boats were equally as expensive, and perhaps even more so.

Where Legends Are Made

djdris posted 03-26-2006 10:33 PM ET (US)     Profile for djdris  Send Email to djdris     

I appreciate your considerate and well thought out responses ( unlike the first guy who reacted like I insulted him or a family member - when I raised the facts that whalers have indeed changed) and its great to have such brand loyalty !!

whalers are obviously still great boats but my only point ( maybe not written well on the first post) is that the old thin "skinned" whaler which wasn't even meant to ride on a roller trailer NOW has guts that are closer to most other hulls. Some now have actual stringers/frames ( which isn't a bad thing) with more glass to keep their integrity. They also had some issues with the foam from the EPA and ( ironically) actually followed companies like edgewater with a modified stringer/blown foam construction which used the foam and a frame.

My only point ( not intending to upset anyone as I have always been a huge whaler fan) is that now with some of the new construction techniques ( which might actually be better but less estoteric than the old hull) along with the higher freeboard - is that if one is indeed shopping for a boat like a Carolina skiff they might want to look at OTHER Boats. IF they want a traditional hull like a regulator, yellowfin or Grady than they might want to compare those boats to the whaler.....
We have many options these days and there are a LOT of quailty hulls out there ..........while 20 years ago it seemed like there was Boston whaler and a bunch of distant seconds.

djdris posted 03-26-2006 10:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for djdris  Send Email to djdris     

One other point.
NOT to offer too many dissenting opinions on this site but Somehow I am dissapointed that Whaler hasn't been able to keep some form of independence ( tough when owned by the largest marine corp in the world) and allowed customers/dealers to buy their new factory rigged Whalers with ouboards of choice
B Whaler is too good of a boat and too expensive to basically force a customer to go with a merc engine. If the Mercs are as good as they believe, then Brunswick/whaler should let the customer decide on what he or she believes is the Best engine for their very expensive investment

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