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Author Topic:   Dauntless 16 performance
skred posted 03-18-2004 09:48 AM ET (US)   Profile for skred   Send Email to skred  
Anyone have any experience/performance data on 1997-1999 16 Dauntless with a 90 Honda or Merc?
Perry posted 03-18-2004 12:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for Perry  Send Email to Perry     
I have a 2002 Dauntless 160 with a Honda 90 mounted 2 holes up. With a 13.25 x 17 pitch prop it goes 40 mph at 5800 rpm but hole shot isn't too great. I use a 13.75 x 15 stainless for everyday use. It gives the boat a good hole shot and tops out at 38 mph. It will go a little beyond the 6000 rpm redline with the 15 pitch prop if I am not careful but I usually boat in rough water and am not a speed demon anyway.

The scuppers are above water with 1/2 tank of fuel and no one aboard.

I average 2.5 gallons an hour and up to 7.5 miles per gallon if conditions permit.

I boat in only salt water and so far, over 200 hours of trouble free use.

I hope this helps

Marlin posted 03-18-2004 10:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for Marlin  Send Email to Marlin     
I boat in only salt water...

Hey Perry, you need to get out in fresh water more often. Just put the boat on the trailer and drive to your nearest Great Lake! ;-)

jimh posted 03-19-2004 12:46 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Perry--those are astonishing numbers!

Given 2.5 gallons/hour and 7.5 miles/gallon, the average speed is thus 18.75 MPH.

Consumption of a 2.5 gallons/hour implies about 15 pounds/hour of fuel. The typical internal combustion engine burns about 0.5 pounds of fuel per hour per horsepower, so your average horsepower is 30-HP.

What amazes me is that you get 18.75 MPH with 30-HP on the 160 Dauntless.

Perry posted 03-19-2004 01:31 AM ET (US)     Profile for Perry  Send Email to Perry     
Marlin, if I weren't surrounded by Pacific Ocean, I'd drive to my nearest Great Lake to dip my boat and trailer:-)

Jim, I didn't mean to imply that I get both 2.5 gph and 7.5 mpg at the same time.

I average around 2.5 gph per tank. When I fill my tank, I divide the gallons by the hours on the meter to get the gph. For instance, last time I filled my tank it took 35 gallons and the boat registered 14 hours during that time. 35 divided by 14 is 2.5 gph.

While traveling at 23 mph and doing 4000 rpm, I can go approx. 7.5 miles per gallon of gas. This is what I mean by getting 7.5 mpg under ideal conditions.

skred posted 03-19-2004 07:39 AM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
Thanks for the feedback, folks. I had feared that the 16 was slower and less fuel-efficient than a lot of other models. This is very encouraging. I'm sorely tempted by the model I described, and am checking it out this weekend. Fortunately, I AM on a Great Lake already, and there's only a few things I miss about salt water: 1. The smell; 2. Washing everything down after an outing; 3. All that great fishing.
skred posted 03-19-2004 07:40 AM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
Forgot one question: Is there a difference between the 1999 and the 2002 D16 hulls and/or weight?
Marlin posted 03-19-2004 10:49 AM ET (US)     Profile for Marlin  Send Email to Marlin     
Perry- yeah, details details...

skred- There appear to be very few differences between the original 16' Dauntless hulls and the current ones. Up through early 2001 (I think), the hulls had a "notch" or "pocket" in the bottom along the centerline at the transom. Apparently this was to allow use of a shorter-shaft motor, or maybe a jackplate, to permit very shallow-water use. With the advent of the heavier 4-stroke motors, that notch was filled in for additional aft bouyancy. The general consensus seems to be that the notched hulls are a little more reluctant to get on plane and a bit more susceptible to porpoising. Overall, I think the hull shape of the Dauntless makes all years a bit slow to plane compared to the Montauks, but it's not a very serious problem. I added a hydrofoil this winter, but haven't had a chance to try it out yet.

It appears from pictures in the 2003 catalog (but of an earlier hull) that at some point the aft corner seats were open underneath, while later models enclosed that area making it accessible by opening the seat top. I've never seen this first-hand, so perhaps those photos may have been of a pre-production boat.

At some point prior to 2003, the factory bimini was reversed. All models use a strut to support the bimini arch when it is folded up, but earlier models ran the strut aft while later models run the strut forward. No big deal either way, as far as I can tell.

Finally, I believe that there was a recall on the very early Dauntless hulls to change something with the fuel fill and/or vent line to fix early complaints of fuel smell in the boat and difficulty topping off the tank.

Hull dimensions and weight are constant across all years.

My boat is a 2003 with a 115 Mercury 4-stroke, propped with a 13.25 x 16. Top speed is about 44.5 mph lightly loaded at 6000 rpm. Overall fuel usage last year was about 2.0 gph (68 hrs, 137.9 gal) in mixed use, mostly cruising just on plane at 22 mph and 3200 rpm with some no-wake zones and low-speed sightseeing thrown in. I don't have good numbers on mpg for you, but Perry's numbers don't sound outrageous to me. On the one long run that I measured, I went 77 miles on exactly 1/4 of a 45 gallon tank, as measured by the questionable fuel guage. That trip was about 24 mph, 3.2 gph, and 6.8 mpg.


skred posted 03-19-2004 12:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
Thanks again. It seems the only even slightly negative observation is that it may be a bit slow to get on plane. That might be an issue pulling a skier, but otherwise, I don't think it's much to worry about. It's not enough to put me off seriously considering the one I'm looking at. Geez, Julius; that Honda 90 looks huge back there.....
cmarques posted 03-19-2004 08:26 PM ET (US)     Profile for cmarques  Send Email to cmarques     
The transom notch is on models up to early 2002. My 2002 Dauntless 160 has a notch and according to Chuck Bennett at BW was built in May 2001 as a 2002 hull.
I don't keep good track of fuel info but several times have run 25+ miles offshore and trolled 4-5 hours and run back in using 20-24 gallons of fuel with a 90 2s Mercury. My fuel gauge wll read less than 1/4 left and take only 20 gallons to fill so not too accurate but works as a safety margin.

In this picture you should be able to clearly see the 'notch' on mine.


cmarques posted 03-19-2004 08:28 PM ET (US)     Profile for cmarques  Send Email to cmarques     
Anyway... that didn't work. If you go to the picture with mine on the trailer you can see. Didn't mean to get all of them in there.


Perry posted 03-19-2004 09:03 PM ET (US)     Profile for Perry  Send Email to Perry     
skred, here is a stern view picture of my boat. Notice that the scuppers above water.

Marlin posted 03-19-2004 09:04 PM ET (US)     Profile for Marlin  Send Email to Marlin     
Thanks for the correction on the year. I think the link you wanted was

Compare that to my 2003 transom at

Anyway, I wouldn't let the difference worry you.


Moe posted 03-19-2004 09:37 PM ET (US)     Profile for Moe  Send Email to Moe     
Here's another perspective of 160 scuppers with a Mercury:


Marlin posted 03-19-2004 10:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for Marlin  Send Email to Marlin     
Hmm, that boat looks vaguely familiar... ;-)

By the way, that's in fresh water with a full tank. In salt water, just the bottom portion of the scuppers are wet. Maybe a half-inch lower than Perry's picture.


Moe posted 03-19-2004 11:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for Moe  Send Email to Moe     
Marlin, given that skred is on Lake Michigan, that should give him a good idea how it will sit in the water there with no one aboard.
Perry posted 03-20-2004 01:47 AM ET (US)     Profile for Perry  Send Email to Perry     
Chris, my boat was built 3 months after yours and has no notch. I guess you are right about the mold change mid year 2002.
skred posted 03-22-2004 08:53 AM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
Thanks a bunch for all the helpful information. It is with a combination of deep regret (on the sale of my '85 15 CC), and great pride (on my new ride), that I announce my purchase of a 1999 16 Dauntless w/ 90 Honda 4s. Went to "look" at it (Hah!) and realized it fit my uses perfectly. I had seriously planned on a 130 Sport, since I fish/boat either alone or with one person., and have never had any trouble on Lake Michigan, but these old bones kept telling me that comfort overrides economy at this stage of life. So, it is with sad feelings, and fond memories, I now move my CW presence to the Post Classic forum, looking forward to an equal amount of animated and informative interaction.
It is now my melancholy duty to move to the Classic section and bid my farewells; realizing of course that I do have a store of classic whaler experience to contribute where needed.
FYI: I'm going to post a photo on the "other" site's photo section today.
I know I will have a lot of questions about this boat, so I will appreciate all the feedback I can get.
skred posted 03-22-2004 09:07 AM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
I forgot to mention that the photo I posted was taken before the installation of 20-inch Whaler-supplied grab rails just aft of the front cleats. I liked the idea of a place to hold onto up front, but not so much rail as to hamper access from the bow and forward quarters. It also dresses the boat up nicely. I'll try to post a photo after I pick up the boat Thursday.
Perry posted 03-22-2004 12:33 PM ET (US)     Profile for Perry  Send Email to Perry     
Congratulations on your new purchase. I'm sure will enjoy your boat. Let us know if you have any furhter questions about the Dauntless 160.

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