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Author Topic:   1996 DAUNTLESS 20
wyeisland posted 10-26-2004 11:24 AM ET (US)   Profile for wyeisland   Send Email to wyeisland  
I have a 1996 Dauntless 20. It is a dual console with bow seating. It has a maximum capacity of 9, maximum rated horsepower is 225.
I have found this is a superior family boat. We mostly ski and cruise, no fishing. The seating arrangement is excellent and the ride is dry. In rough or open water the boat becomes a 5 seater but on flat days the boat has no problem cruising with more.
What hull design do I have? It looks like the Outrage of 1996 but I can not tell. Thanks, Paul
merc125 posted 10-26-2004 05:23 PM ET (US)     Profile for merc125  Send Email to merc125     
I've just emailed about this and they tell me it is the same as Outrage 20.

"The 1997 20' Dauntless/Ventura is 19'8" long, 8'4" beam, 15" draft, 2350lbs estimated dry weight, 4800lbs swamped cap, 9 person cap, 225 hp max, 130 hp min, 25" engine shaft length, 87 gallon fuel capacity. Actually, the 20' Ventura/Dauntless has the same outer hull as the 1996-1999 20' Outrage, also."

What motor are you using and what type of performance do you get? Mine has a 1998 Evinrude 175, 17"P SST prop, 3500 rpm 24 mph, (minimum on plane speed),cruise 4500rpm, 34 mph, Wot 5500 rpm 43mph, full tank and 3 passegers. MartyD

wyeisland posted 10-26-2004 05:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for wyeisland  Send Email to wyeisland     
Thanks for the reply. I have a 2001 Optimax 225. This gives the boat great performance. I hit 50 with one or two people. Its an excellent ski boat. My wife pulls me at 4000rpm at about 38mph.
By the way, this Optimax has all new fuel injectors due to engine failure when I first got the boat last year. It took money to fix it but the boat is a ton of fun and safe in all conditions. My whole family loves it. It has the best, most comfortable seating that I have seen in a whaler.
DBOutrage17 posted 10-27-2004 10:04 AM ET (US)     Profile for DBOutrage17    
Hi, I have a 1996 Outrage 17 that I bought new so I have the Boston Whaler brochure from back then.

According to the specs on the back, you also have the same hull as a 1996 Outrage 19 (there wasn't an Outrage 20) and should have a 91 gallon gas tank. These were the "accu-track" hull designs.

vermilionwhalers posted 04-02-2005 04:46 PM ET (US)     Profile for vermilionwhalers  Send Email to vermilionwhalers     
Hi - Thanks for this thread! I'm looking at a 1996 Dauntless. When I first saw the pictures, my reaction was "That's a Ventura, not a Dauntless!" Is there enough room to stand behind the steering wheel without sitting down? Can the seat be turned around to turn it into a "leaning post?" I grew up standing on a boat and that's why I lean toward the CC models; however, the "Ventura" style is more family-friendly, IMHO.

Thanks for any response..
Doug Johnson

jimh posted 04-03-2005 10:59 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
It looks as though the 1996 DAUNTLESS 20 and 1996 OUTRAGE 19 share very similar hull dimensions.
merc125 posted 04-03-2005 02:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for merc125  Send Email to merc125     
I have a 1997 Dauntless 20, and find I stand while driving most of the time.
The boat is equipped with a tilting helm ,and to comfortably stand I must have the wheel in the most vertical position. In addition I must slide the seat all the way back. It is comfortable but close.
I would like to add a speed knob to the wheel but don't have enough room. I'm about 200# and if you were very much larger, you might not fit.
Also while standing your head is above the windscreen so be prepared for noise.
This is a great family boat, and will also meet the needs of all but the most hardcore fishermen.
Our bimini top is almost always up and its mounting bracket is the only weak spot I have found on the boat. The bracket was screwed on and has pulled out.Thru bolting is first on my list this spring.
I would also check the liner of the motor splashwell as that is only screwed to the transom and may have loosened. MartyD
phatwhaler posted 04-03-2005 07:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for phatwhaler  Send Email to phatwhaler     
The only difference between the 1996 Outrage 19 and the Outrage 20 for 1997 & 1998 is:
1. It says 19 after Outrage on the hullside.
2. The interior gel-coat is a slightly different color than the hull.
3. The 1997 and 1998 models had white plastic for the doors and dash etc.. The 1996 had black plastic pieces.
4. The 1996 models supposedly have a 91 gallon tank, and the 1997 and 1998's have a 87 gallon tank.

These are the only differences I have found.

Also worth noting is this hull is still available from the commercial side of the house. Justice 19

phatwhaler out.

vermilionwhalers posted 04-04-2005 08:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for vermilionwhalers  Send Email to vermilionwhalers     
Marty - Thanks for the info. Growing up I'd peek over the windshield of our Century 21 cuddy - great way to get your hair blow-dried! I'm going to look at a 96 Dauntless 20 this month. Does anyone have advice about ease of launching? This would be a bit more weight in a boat than I have been looking for.

Doug Johnson

FRTDOG540 posted 04-08-2005 09:57 AM ET (US)     Profile for FRTDOG540  Send Email to FRTDOG540     
I have a '99 D/V 18' with a 175 Ficht. It is the best family boat I have owned..We have an '82 Newport up at the cottage in Canada and its great for the kids to run around in, but you feel worn out after a sunny day..The ventura is smooth, feels real solid, and fast..I use a land and sea prop and get 53 off of the gps...You won't go wrong with the 20' hull...Good luck!!


vermilionwhalers posted 05-01-2005 05:33 PM ET (US)     Profile for vermilionwhalers  Send Email to vermilionwhalers     
Hello and please welcome me to the "Dauntless 20" club. Just purchased today. 1997 Dauntless 20 with 200 Merc Offshore. Pics to come when it's all cleaned up. We will water test later this week. My wife is very excited as this is the first Whaler she has seen - after looking at many models - that she fell in love with. I agree it's the best Whaler for the price and for family fun.

Couple questions: Trim tabs needed? Doel-fin? It has neither, but has the cool drinks table and sun top. I'll get you my observations after the test.

Doug and Sandy

wyeisland posted 05-01-2005 06:06 PM ET (US)     Profile for wyeisland  Send Email to wyeisland     
You bought a great boat. My wife loves it. That goes a long way when spending boat money. I have a Doel fin but no trim tabs. Check out pictures of launch day.

vermilionwhalers posted 05-01-2005 06:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for vermilionwhalers  Send Email to vermilionwhalers     
Paulkath: Thanks, we're way ahead of you and have already printed out your pictures and are enjoying them. Thanks for the info. I thought a fin on the motor would work best. I can hardly wait for our maiden voyage in the 20. We will keep everyone informed.
SEGrin posted 05-02-2005 08:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for SEGrin  Send Email to SEGrin     
I have a Ventura 18 and found that I couldn't comfortably stand to run on plane. Sitting down was painful in rough water. I bought a taller seat pedestal and now I can keep my feet under me to cushion the landings. Unfortunately, I now sit above the windshield and occasionally get a faceful. On the other hand, I can see over a passenger in the bow seat.
Just a suggestion. Enjoy your boat - they're great.
merc125 posted 05-03-2005 07:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for merc125  Send Email to merc125     
While a doelfin might help on a smaller lighter boat, I think its too small to be of much use on a Dauntless 20. I've purchased a 4 blade OMC Renegade propeller,( which is described as a "stern lifter") to help change the running angle and lower my minimum planing speed.
Tabs couldn't hurt, but I hate drilling holes into a perfectly good boat, MartyD
vermilionwhalers posted 05-05-2005 10:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for vermilionwhalers  Send Email to vermilionwhalers     
Hi - Just looked at her (1997 Dauntless 20) today, but cannot water-test until next week. They installed a Stingray hydrofoil per my request. Supposed to help up to 300 hp engines. Guy had a Ventura 1998 just next to me - really tricked out with fishing gear: too much for my taste. He said he stands most of the time; found he liked a bit more weight in the bow to keep her down. I'm hoping the hydrofoil helps. A really nice beamy boat and we can hardly wait to try her out. Nice Mills bimini and I notice there's zippers on other sides. Does anyone have the full Mills canvas and how much $ would I be looking at?

Also the 200 Merc Saltwater series does not say EFI but the fellow with the Dauntless assured me it must be. Does anyone know?

Thanks. Pictures as promised WILL be on the way....

Doug Johnson

vermilionwhalers posted 10-12-2005 08:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for vermilionwhalers  Send Email to vermilionwhalers     
Hello and sorry about the wait. We have just pulled our 1997 Dauntless 20 out for the year after a great summer. The 200 Merc offshore performed great, and we went through only about 90 gallons of gas.

I added a dole-fin (not sure if that was the exact make) which made a great difference in the handling. Planes easily without much bow rise at all. Also added the OEM bow cover from Mills - not cheap, but well worth it. Easily installed one sunny afternoon at the dock with a six-pack of Heinekens! Later in the season the bow cover made it much less windy on those cool evenings. I will be adding the full Mills covers next season.

This is the best boat I've had. Performed great in many different kinds of chop, launched and towed easily, and I was lucky to have no problems with the motor all year.

Anyone interested in Pics please email me. I have some in the water, and one juxtaposing with my other BW - a 15 Sport. Interesting the difference just 4 feet makes!

Please look for another post in the Repairs/Mods section: I'm looking to add raw water washdown for next year.


20dauntless posted 10-12-2005 09:57 PM ET (US)     Profile for 20dauntless    
Wow, you only used 90 gallons! I have the same boat with a 1997 Yamaha 200, and it uses about 10gph at 4000rpm. How many hours did you use the boat? Thanks.


vermilionwhalers posted 10-13-2005 09:56 AM ET (US)     Profile for vermilionwhalers  Send Email to vermilionwhalers     
Just guessing - Not too many. Probably 3 two hour trips, 10 one hour trips, and 20 crossings at 15 minutes each. By my math that's 21 hours. Also I still need to add about 45 gallons to top off the tank for next year.

We did a lot of chainsawing instead of boating this year...

vermilionwhalers posted 10-13-2005 10:00 AM ET (US)     Profile for vermilionwhalers  Send Email to vermilionwhalers     
Sam - Also cruising @ slower speeds - my wife doesn't like to go too fast. I'd say we'd rarely go over 4000 rpm (3500 plus trim-out), and many times just idling (pontoon-style). The Merc seems pretty efficient. Didn't go through a lot of oil, either.
20dauntless posted 10-14-2005 07:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for 20dauntless    
thanks for your response. The numbers make a lot more sense now. I almost always run 4000-5000 rpm when the water is flat enough, so that is why I use so much more fuel than you. Thanks,
vermilionwhalers posted 06-13-2008 09:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for vermilionwhalers  Send Email to vermilionwhalers     
We are going to repower our 1997 Dauntless 20. I just received an email from Whaler that lists the max engine weight at 540 pounds. That rules out the Suzuki four strokes, but keeps the Verado in the running. We are currently leaning toward putting a new power head on our 200hp Merc Offshore, about $6000. To buy new? Verado would be $16,000, which includes controls.
boatdryver posted 06-14-2008 10:23 AM ET (US)     Profile for boatdryver  Send Email to boatdryver     
I noticed on this thread recent postings about fuel consumption with different motors on a 20 ft Dauntless and one person thinking of a repower, so I'll jump in with my experience just for interest's sake.

I recently bought a 2007 200 Dauntless which came with a Generation I 175 HP 4 cylinder Verado.

This model of Dauntless is a 20 ft. center console model and so even with a 75 gallon fuel capacity it is a little lighter than the 20 ft dual console 20 ft Dauntless' discussed in this thread. So Whaler in 2007 equipped it with a 175. Now they offer a 4 cylinder 200 HP (same weight =510 lbs)

Anyway, here's a link to my fuel consumption data in case it would be of interest. This is my first Verado of course, and I'd be a little skeptical owning such a complicated motor (supercharger) when it gets to be 15 years old, but for now I couldn't be more impressed with the acceleration, quietness, economy, and the lack of smoke and exhaust smell when going slow downwind.

That said, you can buy a lot of gasoline for the $10,000 difference between a new powerhead for the Merc Offshore 2 stroke and a new Verado for your Dauntless 20.

My data shows fuel burn of 5.5 gallons per hour at 4000 rpm=27 mph=4.9 MPG. But these figures are from a test run with only me on board and half fuel.


twinfallspuddle posted 08-21-2008 09:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for twinfallspuddle  Send Email to twinfallspuddle     
Hi, just read thru the posts and see that most owners have a similiar attribute to mine. I wanted a whaler but my wife wanted a bowrider. this boat was love at first sight for both of us. My BW (and Yamaha) dealer had it on the floor with their other Whalers, none of which were powered. They suggested a 175 but it was rated to 225, that power was the step point for a larger block instead of just greater compressionfor the 200 and it was only a $900 difference in price. Three years ago a friend got the same boat with a Merc 175 offshore. Boy am I happy I got the 225

I do not have any special tabs or doelfin. the boat begins to plane at 3000 rpm and runs 30mph at 3200 rpm @wot 5500 it will reach 52-54mph per gps. this is of course with only two tucked in people, flat water/no wind and bimini down


cheeseburger posted 06-27-2010 10:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for cheeseburger  Send Email to cheeseburger     
I bought this model unseen via EBAY from Florida (I live in BC) and have now reprowered it with a Optimax 200. There are some things that I would like to do to the boat but I would like some qualified Whaler opinions. [Solicits a private discussion. Sorry--we do not encourage private discussions. You should post your questions in a new article so that we can have a public discussion. The entire purpose of this website is to provide information to all, not to encourage private discussions.--jimh]

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