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Author Topic:   CONQUEST 305
thomasfxlt posted 08-04-2005 11:55 AM ET (US)   Profile for thomasfxlt   Send Email to thomasfxlt  
I'm looking pretty seriously at the CONQUEST 305. It's down to that or the Grady Marlin. I love the layout of the 305 and my wife likes it better as well. I am a bit uncomfortable with the Boston Whaler, though. Maybe some of you with experience with this boat (2005 305 Conquest) can help me with a few things.

Ride. Is it a pounder? I can't find the deadrise specifications in the literature. The dealers says 20-degrees of deadrise at the transom, but I think I found a thread where someone indicates it's 18-degress of deadrise. I would not call that a deep vee.

Dry or wet?

Overall construction quality of the big boats.

Thru Hulls, plastic or bronze?

Thanks in advance. I sure love the boat in principle at this point.

bsmotril posted 08-04-2005 12:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for bsmotril  Send Email to bsmotril     
All the Conquest hulls are extremely dry. More so than any other design out there I can think of. The smirk on the bow does an excellent jjob of knocking down spray and forcing it well away from the hull, even with the wind on the beam. Construction quality is as good, or better than the smaller boats. On my 98 Conquest 23, the scupper through hulls at the waterline were plastic, below hull fittings for baitwell and seawater intake were metal. Not sure what they are on current models.
BarryGreen posted 08-04-2005 02:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for BarryGreen  Send Email to BarryGreen     
thomasfxlt - I can't attest to the 305 Conquest but I have a new 2005 235 CQ that you can probably draw some conclusions from.

1) My understanding is that the 235 has a 20 degree deadrise at the transom. Not quite an Outrage, but I'm not sure you'll see much difference in the real world. The up side is that it gets up on plane nicely with much less bow rise, and makes better speed with less power. Still very seaworthy.

2) Definitely a dry boat. In fact, my 1998 20' Outrage was definitely a wetter boat than the 235 in similar conditions, although neither would be what I would call a wet boat.

3) This is my third new Whaler, and is far and away the best built and finished of all. I've owned a lot of boats, including three Stamas' (which until now I considered to be one of the highest quality boats made) but the fit and finish of the new 235 is outstanding.

4) Based only on appearance, my thru hulls are all metal (chromed brass/bronze I imagine) except for the short thru-the-bottom drains from the deck wells and possibly the garboard drain, which are "plastic". I also think you'll find folks who feel the current "plastic" thru-hulls BW uses are preferable in a number of ways to the "rolled" brass thru hulls used on the older boats.

Hope this helps.

GradyFan posted 08-04-2005 07:40 PM ET (US)     Profile for GradyFan  Send Email to GradyFan     
I can't speak for the 305 Conquest or the Marlin but can relay to you that Grady's SV2 hull is not just marketing hype.

I own a 26' Grady Islander and this baby cuts through a headsea like butter. In fact the first thing I noticed with this boat is I don't have to slow down for anything... doesn't pound at all. That is unless its a 4 -
5 foot short period chop... then well, I guess I'd need a Marlin to run through it. :)

My advice, especially when making such a large investment is to take both of the boats out for a good demo in some snotty conditions. Buy the one you like best.

For counterpoint you can check out the greatgrady site.

macfam posted 08-04-2005 09:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for macfam  Send Email to macfam     
I would have to agree w/ GradyFan, be sure you give a thorough test drive to those boats. You're talking lots of dough.
I've been in many Gradys, and they do perform well in a head sea. However, there are varying opinions on how Gradys perform in a following sea, including the SeaV2 hull.
Some SeaV2 Gradys are horrible in these conditions.

I've heard great things about the new Boston Whaler 305, but I've never personally been on one.

A 305 w/ twin Verados........sweet!!

GradyFan posted 08-04-2005 10:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for GradyFan  Send Email to GradyFan     
Yeah, a nasty following sea in a SV2 can be sketchy, gotta keep the bow nice and high or the very sharp forward vee will steer you around a little more than you'll like.

thomasfxlt posted 08-05-2005 06:20 AM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     
Sounds like the Grady can have a bit of "cat" tendancy when the nose is down.

Thanks for the feedback folks. I'm deciding this weekend.

GradyFan posted 08-05-2005 08:03 AM ET (US)     Profile for GradyFan  Send Email to GradyFan     
Another thing... I imagine if you're planning on going far offshore unsinkability takes on a whole new meaning. The Marlin has positive floatation but I'd be surprised if it floated level.
handn posted 08-05-2005 09:39 AM ET (US)     Profile for handn  Send Email to handn     
We have a 305 Conquest and have 400 hours on the boat including a 800 n.m. cruise in the Sea of Cortez. Ours has 225 4-stroke YamaMercs.
1. The ride is great. The boat likes to be trimmed all the way in and will plane at minimum speed with a comfortable ride into virtually any sea. The minimum planing speed is 13 knots and with 4-bladed props, it will hold this speed up big rollers. Side to side motion is minimal and the boat is a comfortable fishing platform. Following sea performance is great, even on autopilot. We have been out in virtually all sea conditions and have no complaints about the ride and handling. Earlier big Whalers had notched hulls and poorer hull performance. The 305 hull was redesigned and the performance shows it. The deadrise at the stern is 18 degrees. Top speed is 31 kts and cruise at 4500 is 24 kts. Fuel economy at 20 kt cruise is 1.2 mpg nautical and trolling at 7 kts with one engine is 2 mpg nautical.
2. The boat is wet when running into tight chop with the hammer down. You can put hundreds of gallons over the top while the ride is still comfortable. The boat is heavy, the hull is designed to put the bow in the water and with heavy seas, the spray rails can't do their job. We have weather curtains on all year and slow down when the water starts going over the top. Most of the time, we roll the curtains up. But in certain sea conditions, spray can't be eliminated by trim and speed changes.
3. Fit and finish is great. This is our second new Whaler. The first one looked like new after 5 years and this one is just as good. All the hardware and accessories on the boat are of top to very good quality. Thru hulls are brass or bronze on the bottom and marelon on top. Marelon risists fouling better than metal. BW customer service is first rate. They have supported us even in Mexico.
4. The boat is a looker. The helm seat is designed to be either a seat or a leaning post. We still love being on the boat after a year and a half.
I agree; take both the Whaler and the Grady out and buy the one you like.
thomasfxlt posted 08-05-2005 10:47 AM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     

Thank you for such a detailed report on the boat.

As I stated, I love the layout. My biggest concern is the ride quality. We live and boat in the lower Keys (Summerland). Inside the reef on days with 10-15mph winds,it's choppy. 2-3' with short frequency. Will this cause bow spray in this boat? I've got a 5 mile run to get past the reef through this stuff. These kinds of days will produce 3-5' swells with a wide frequency outside the reef and it sounds like the Whaler will handle that easily and without much ride compromise or spray.

Sounds like the Bahama runs would be great in this boat.

DaveH posted 08-05-2005 12:04 PM ET (US)     Profile for DaveH  Send Email to DaveH     
I apologize for the completely off-topic response. Since Summerland Key is so small, please be on the lookout for a 1967 Corvette Coupe with a 427ci/400Hp. It's a beautiful marina blue with a white stinger on the hood (only one like it). That car was in my family for 26 years until this January. That owner sold it to the new guy on Summerland Key. You can tell the new owner he can contact me if he needs any vehicle history.
-Dave Hanington

By the way, the Conquest 305 is a very well built boat. Since the factory is in Edgewater, FL (just south of Daytona Beach), I would call the factory and arrange a visit on its monthly scheduled tour day. Don't take our word for the quality, see for yourself.

Here's an article written by Jim Herbert (Jimh), our moderator and web site owner:

handn posted 08-05-2005 05:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for handn  Send Email to handn     
I don't think the 305 would be wet in the chop that you describe. You might get a drop of spray now and then but the boat would be mostly dry and offer a smooth ride. We have similar sea conditions in the Sea of Cortez and the Conquest is dry in these conditions.
Where the Conquest gets wet is when the chop runs against the tide. The Sea of Cortez is like a bathtub and fills and empties each day and tidal currents can be extreme where the Sea gets shallower or around islands. If the chop goes against the tide, you can get 3-5 footers with froth on the top three or less seconds apart. The Conquest will blast into this stuff at planing speed without sending us to the chiropractor but will be wet doing it.
We purchased the boat in California and spent a few hours on the big rollers out in the Pacific and the boat would go 25 knots without kicking up any spray in those conditions.
We have the cruising package of generator and air. That and a full load of fuel adds quite a bit of weight and contributes to the spray. If you dispense with those items and go out with a half tank of fuel, the boat would be drier.
When you go to the Bahamas, you will find that the boat has plenty of range and offers surprisingly comfortable accomodations. With four strokes, everything is quiet and you can converse, listen to music and even hear the radio over the boat noise. It makes much less noise than my friend's twin diesel sportfisher and much less noise than my old 23 Conquest with a single 225 Optimax. Everything is well thought out and is fine as a live aboard for a few days. If you get caught in rough seas the boat feels safe even comfortable.
On our cruise, we were the smallest boat at all the anchorages and attracted a bit of attention.
If you hook a billfish, you will find that the boat handles well. You can pivot and backdown using the clutches and chase him going forward if necessary. There is mimimum hull roll if you get beamed and the padded coaming pads are comfortable. It has a walkaround hull so if the fish gets under the boat, you can follow him without going overboard.
The factory anchor and windlass work great. We spliced another 200 feet of rope onto the 150 feet of chain and line supplied by the factory so we can anchor in up to 50 feet of water.
The only thing that was a pain was dealing with the dingy. It lived uninflated on the foredeck. To inflate it, we lugged it back into the cockpit, blew it up and tossed it overboard. Then the motor was retrieved from the "cabin" under the companion seat and installed on the boat. With practice, that got to be about 40 minutes of unpleasant labor to set up and the same time to stow the dingy.
On the next cruise, we will leave the outboard at home or perhaps take inflatable kayaks.
Hope this information helps. Let me know if you have any other questions.
thomasfxlt posted 08-05-2005 06:04 PM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     

You are a neat guy. Sounds like you and your bride have been having some fun with the boat. I agree though, the dingy thing would be a pain on this platform.

Thanks again. Your insights are helpful.


mad max posted 08-10-2005 08:40 AM ET (US)     Profile for mad max  Send Email to mad max     
I have a 27.5 conquest, great boat.
mad max
mad max posted 08-10-2005 09:16 AM ET (US)     Profile for mad max  Send Email to mad max     
I have a 27.5 ft quest and I love it. It is a great comfortable fishing boat. I took it from naples to cuyjoe key across florida bay in 3-4 ft quarter seas and did 20 knots all the way with very little pound. It was a little wet but fine with the curtains up. I know a person whoI think has the vet on cuyjoe key. e mail me\mad max
jimh posted 08-11-2005 09:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
thomasfxlt posted 08-12-2005 10:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     
Bought it!
handn posted 08-14-2005 09:49 AM ET (US)     Profile for handn  Send Email to handn     
Please follow up and let us know what you think of the boat.
thomasfxlt posted 08-14-2005 11:15 AM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     
I will. I pick it up this Wed/Thurs.

This is a loaded 305 with twin 250 Verado's. I'm rigging it simply with a Garmin 3010, Lowrance 19c finder/plotter and an Icom. I'd like an autopilot, but I'm going to wait because the options for Verado are limited.

Who doesn't get a bit of buyers remorse. So many great boats out there. The biggest concern I have in retrospect is this whole swamped weight thing. BW makes such a big deal about being unsinkable, it appears there is not much real margin on this boat at 2200 lbs. Does the air and gen. weight have to come off of this as well as motors and people? I'm not sure she'd float at all if it does. I did see a comment about the cabin flooding being in the calculation. If the cabin door was kept closed and not allowed to flood, that would significantly increase the capacity.

Anyway, I'm buying the boat. I seatrialed last Thursday and was very impressed with the stability of the platform. We were in choppy seas inside the reef. 2-3' chop and the boat handles great. No pound and very little spray.

I love the Verado controls, especially the autosync. Steering is a dream. At idle they are the quietest 4/s I've owned.

This thing feels safe and durable. I love the overall layout for my purpose. Great fishability coupled with creature comforts for the family. The lounge seating across from the helm seat is great.

The cockpit in this boat is the best. It's a dance floor back there. I suppose the fishboxes could have been deeper, but there are two. I'll be lucky to fill one anyway.

This is a heavy boat. Pitot on the Smartguage showed 28mph at 4700 rpm and 39.8 mph at 5700 which appeared to be top-end. I thought these Verados were suppose to rev up to 6200/6400. I suppose it's the propping. I'll be interested to see the real performance by GPS. I forgot to bring my handheld on the trial.

Very little nose pitch when you pop it out of the hole. I love the balance of this vessel. She stays down and it makes it easy to control the slap.

I was surprised there was no tab level indicator. I'll add that.

Stay tuned for a detailed report. Thanks to everyone for their input.

BarryGreen posted 08-14-2005 06:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for BarryGreen  Send Email to BarryGreen     
thomasfxlt -

Conbgratulations on your choice.

Two items:

1) I don't know if the boat you tested was the one you bought, or another. Several of us on the site have the same issue as on the boat you ran, with the Verados not propped to run at the upper end of the WOT range (5800-6400). Merc specifically states in the engine manual that 6200-6400 is preferred. If your Verados are running 17" pitch Rev4's you might want to try the new 15" pitch units. I would expect many models are now shipping with the 15" prop that was just released, so check first. My dealer agreed to do a 17" for 15" swap for my 250 Verado on a 235 CQ.

2) I agree on the trim tab indicators; for that kind of money you'd expect something other than the bare Lenco controls.

sideshow posted 08-15-2005 07:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for sideshow  Send Email to sideshow     

I just took delivery of my 305 2 weeks ago. Same fitout as you except Raymarine C-80's. I can't speak highly enough about the boat. My thoughts are exactly as yours are. Lots of room on deck, yet comfortable down below. I have just stepped down from a bigger flybridge game fishing boat. Last Friday I went out 40 miles in what turned out to be very average conditions, the 305 was very impressive! I felt just as comfortable as in the bigger boat yet far more confident handling the 305. The 305 offers the same level of enjoyment as a bigger boat without the same expense and ongoing work.

I also noted the rev range with the Verado's. Mine was also a little low. Raising the engines up 1 notch will improve the performance noticably. My dealer and I felt that the engines are mounted a little low by Whaler. I am however interested in the effect changing props will have.

Not convinced with the Lowrance. Had 4 Lowrance units in the last 3 years. All three had to be replaced. Raymarine, Furuno & Simrad are my suggestions.

Congratulations on on a smart purchase, you'll love it!

sideshow posted 08-15-2005 07:11 AM ET (US)     Profile for sideshow  Send Email to sideshow     
Barry Green

I have a friend with a 255 Conquest with single 250 Verado. He has also raised the engine by 1 notch and noticed a definate improvement in performance. You might want to check it out on your 235.

thomasfxlt posted 08-15-2005 09:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     

Nice to find another 305 buyer. I was beginning to think that handn had the only one.

How do you like your Verados? They seem like great motors and controls in concept. Hopefully they will live up to the vision. I went back through the boat today, looking for fuel filters and separators. There aren't any. I guess all of that stuff is on board the engine under the cowling.

Have you found the boat to be as wet as handn in similar conditions? Seems to be the boats only fault.

A few things I learned today. Whaler stated that the boat wet is a max. of 12,000 lbs. I calculate 12,300 with the Verados, generator, ac unit and diesel tank. Add for gear, water and ice, it would be higher yet. I'm not sure if Whaler is saying they fudged the weight to the high side or if they really don't know. I'm hoping for under 12,000 wet. In any case, it is a heavy boat.

Can anyone tell me specifically where the three fuel tanks are on the boat and what each one holds?

Is the cockpit floor mechanical area as well thought out as it appears? Access is phenominal. I'd be curious to hear a surveyors opinion of this.

Props on my boat are Mirage 3 blade, 15 pitch. Is that the new standard issue?

Another thing I learned is that the Smart Guage system has a transducer for depth. The Garmin I'm installing will have the sounder intereface with transducer as well. Adding a third for my Lowrance is not a good idea as they will interfere. Looks like I'll be using the Garmin finder. It's not bad. I had the 2010 previously and it was competent. I did add the XM weather interface box and antenae today. I think that will be a great service. I'll give it a try. A bit spendy per month, but the thing give you a tremendous amount of info. NOAA weather radar, lightning strikes, current, wind, wave height and freq. and more. It overlays the radar on the plotter.

thomasfxlt posted 08-15-2005 09:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     
One more question for handn and sideshow;

Did you guys transom mount your ducers or go thru-hull. My dealer has opted for transom mount. As I inquired why, they say that the pocket in the boat where thru-hull would be used requires a ferring block. There appears to be some concern that this may interfere with proper water intake on the Verado. Any experience here?

Peter posted 08-16-2005 10:56 AM ET (US)     Profile for Peter  Send Email to Peter     
Based on my own experience running Mirage and Revolution 4s on a 27 Whaler WD, I think you'd be better off with 15P Rev 4s than 15P Mirages on the 305 Conquest. Certainly don't commit to the 15P Mirage without the dealer letting you try the 15P Rev 4s first.
sideshow posted 08-17-2005 05:39 AM ET (US)     Profile for sideshow  Send Email to sideshow     

Love the Verado's! Wouldn't have the boat any other way. I have no preference in terms of outboard manufacturers, however the 305 with Verado's is a perfect match. The boat gets on the plane very quickly, I was amazed at how easily it does. The combination of ride comfort and engine quietness make it an extremely comfortable boat to travel in. I have the Mirage 3 blade 15inch props, haven't tried any others. Once again check with raising the engine mounting height to increase rpm. Whaler definately mount the Verado's slightly low. The improvement is significant.

Not sure on the exact weight of the boat apart from heavy! Can't remember the fuel tank locations however they are shown in the owners manual.

In heavy seas water does drain into the walk around and into the cockpit. However under the hardtop with the weather curtins up it is very sheltered. However under these conditions I am yet to find a boat that isn't wet!! The cockpit does drain very effectively.

I have a transom mounted transducer that works very well. My dealer also mentioned issues with the thru hull transducer fitted after manufacture of the boat.

Also don't forget the 17inch drop down TV/DVD player in the cabin! Works a treat late at night!

thomasfxlt posted 08-17-2005 10:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     
Picking up the boat Thurs. AM.

The dealer is reluctant to change motor setup at this time. Somehow or other the service dept. got Whaler corporate into the act and they are quite defensive about the setup. They insist that they've tested and that the factory setup is the ideal compromise "all conditions" setup. The dealer will work with me and make changes but advises me to wait. I'll get an agreement to swap the props if I choose and to get the motor position changed at least once on them.

Thanks for everyones input. I'll post my experience this weekend.


sideshow posted 08-18-2005 03:14 AM ET (US)     Profile for sideshow  Send Email to sideshow     
That makes good sense. Good Luck
thomasfxlt posted 08-18-2005 09:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     
I had a bit of a rough start to the day. The 305 was suppose to be ready by 11:30, but final cleaning wasn't done. They finally got off the boat by 12:30 and then the final inspection guy started going through mechanicals. No generator. Took them 2-1/2 hours to figure that out. Bad panel on the gennie. Took one off the other 305 on the lot and it was ready to go.

The motors were left in the factory setting. Apparently there is no Rev 15 pitch, 4 blade, left handed prop yet. Have to wait for that.

The Garmin is sweet with the XM weather. Check it out!

Quick test ride with the delivery captain and off we went. I had a 60 mile run home from Islamorada to Summerland. Great opportunity to see what the boat had in store for me.

First, the boat gets up on plane like a dream . No bow rise and low planing speed as has been mentioned here.

The Verado controls are sweet. Steering is great and you can take your hands off the wheel without having the thing torque on you.

This is one quiet hull. The only analogy I can muster is the sound you get when you tap on sheetrock and find a stud. Solid! No vibration.

When I sit at the helm , my eyes are eye level with the windshield frame. I have to either stand to look over, or sit in the chair without the bolster. Minor irritation.

The transom seat is best of class in the industry. It's the widest and it's solid. It's not the quietest spot on the boat when your cruising. The Verado's are quiet, but still alot of noise when you're right in front of them.

I didn't fish today, so no report on the cockpit other than I know it's going to be awesome.

The mechanical hold in the deck is well thought out. Everything is plainly marked and accessable.

The boat will need some tab depending of wind and direction. Leveling the boat caused no reduction in rpm's or speed. Tabbing port and starboard to dig the nose did result in rpm reduction as expected. I was in a light chop today with a following sea. The seas got a bit sloppy ocean side and the boat didn't notice it all. I crossed some lobster boat wake to check out the slam and it was non-existant.

Top speed was almost 44mph at 6000 rpm. Cruise at 4500 was 32mph. I can live with that. The boat was light. 110 gallons of fuel. 2 people on board, little ice. Full water tank. I can live with 31-32 at 4500. Fuel consumption at that speed was 28 gph.

The boat handles nicely. Smooth banked turns. It's a bit flat until your crank it a bit, then it lets go and gives you that v-hull turn.

My port side curtain snaps don't line up with the boat snaps. How can I fix this? Can the boats' snaps be slid into place? They seem locked in place.

I'm not sure about the smart guage yet. I don't like all the screwing around to find basic info. I'll experiment with setting up the display tomorrow. I need rpm's, flow, and few others. I'm sure it can be customized.

I wish there was a glove box at the helm for charts and other stuff. The Grady had a mesh net in the hard top. This boat could use something like that.

So far so good. I'm very impressed overall. Thrilled with the ride.


sideshow posted 08-18-2005 10:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for sideshow  Send Email to sideshow     

Well done. She's a beauty.

You can customize the smartcraft home page to a certain point. My side curtains didn't line up either however my dealer assures me the clips can be adjusted. I'm still to adjust mine.

Peter posted 08-19-2005 07:58 AM ET (US)     Profile for Peter  Send Email to Peter     
Sounds like a nice ride.

I just found out that the 15P Rev 4 is only made in a righty for now. I don't really understand why they do that because its not only the single engine applications that might have a hard time turning up to 6100+ RPM. Why not make both lefties and righties?

Is the 6000 RPM at WOT achieved with the motors trimmed up to reach the best top speed? If so, then I'm guessing here that with a full load of fuel, those motors are going to have a hard time turning much above 5800. Perhaps they'll loosen up a little over time after they have "broken in". Because you'll lose atleast 200 RPM turning Rev 4s versus Mirages of the same pitch, now I'm not so sure that 15P Rev 4s (if a pair were available) would work on this rig even though I think this large rig would clearly benefit from more blade surface that the Rev 4 provides as I have found to be the case with my 27 Whaler. Of course raising the engines up a hole would improve the RPM but would increase the risk of propeller blowout in a heavy chop or sea state, something that is surpressed quite well by the Rev 4s.

My next GPS will have the weather overlay. Could have really used it last weekend with the severe thunderstorms we had.

Not sure how the windshield frame is constructed on the Conquest 305 but if the snaps on the windishield are on sliders which fit into upper and lower grooves cut into in the frame, all you have to do is slide the snaps into position. Might require just a very gentle urging with a flat head screw drive to get them to move. If the curtains aren't snapped down, those slidable snaps on the windshield frame will have a tendency to move around abit. Also, try to pick a hot, sunny day to snap the canvas into place and leave it like that for a while to "stretch out". The canvas tends to shrink a little over time when not secured to the snaps, and when its cold out it can be difficult to snap into place if it hasn't been used in a while.

BarryGreen posted 08-19-2005 12:57 PM ET (US)     Profile for BarryGreen  Send Email to BarryGreen     
Sideshow - I want to first feel out the change when going from my current 17P Rev4 to the 15p prop. If that gets rpms up to 6200 or so I'll probably be happy. BW did such a nice job of mounting the 250 Verado that I almost hate to carve out the sealant and break it loose from the transom to move it up that one hole. If I still have issues, however, that's definintely on the to-do list.

Also, I just installed a Lowrance 110C on my 235CQ. What a fantastic piece of electronics! I'm on a large lake that Navionics has a hi-res chart for, and the display is startling. I'm still experimenting with the features, but it's quite a unit. Also, I mounted the Lowrance 200kHz skimmer transducer on the port side across from the Smartcraft transducer, and they don't intefere with each other. Always interesting to compare speed and depth readings between the Smartcraft and Lowrance systems.

thomasfxlt - I agree on the Smartcraft system; I'd much rather have guages even if it meant I couldn't check blower boost or bolt torque. However, if you use the "customize" icon and set it up for the attributes you consider most useful, it's certainly workable.

sideshow posted 08-19-2005 05:20 PM ET (US)     Profile for sideshow  Send Email to sideshow     

Let me know how you go with the change in props. If you can find your solution that way it is the prefered option.

I had a bad run with Lowrance. I have also heard rumors that the Lowrance gear works better in fresh water. I never had any problem with their GPS gear, however their sounders and transducers gave me plenty of grief! I've had Raymarine on my last 2 boats and I must say it has never missed a beat.

I believe you can add some of the Mercury gauges to run with your SC5000. I looked at adding a couple however after getting used to the SC5000 I don't mind it.

thomasfxlt posted 08-19-2005 05:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     
Gennie problems again today. I opened the intake water valve in the mechanical hold, started the blower and then started the generator. It ran fine for about 2 minutes then shut down. I restarted and it shut itself down within 10 seconds. Seems like it's overheated and some temp. sensor is shutting it down. The water pressure from the intake flows through the separater filter and then into the gennie. Seems like it's self priming because the water pressure coming from the hull bottom fills the separater. Creates a constant flow with the intake valve open. Maybe there is some water pump in the gennie that's not working? Does the water exhaust out the same port as the engine exhaust. If so, I do not have any water flow. Could it be airlocked? How do you fix that problem?

sideshow posted 08-20-2005 08:33 AM ET (US)     Profile for sideshow  Send Email to sideshow     

The water & exhaust both come out of the same port at the rear near the live bait tank. Otherwise I don't have any clue!

dhlaw posted 08-20-2005 07:23 PM ET (US)     Profile for dhlaw  Send Email to dhlaw     
Yes there is an impeller that is in line on the gennie. I would get a njew one and an extra. They are easily replaced and cheap. My 295 has gone through a couple....
thomasfxlt posted 08-20-2005 10:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     
Thanks for the tip. The gennie guy is coming out Monday morning. I'll bet that's what it is. I'll get a spare and watch how to put it in.

Used the boat some today with about 10 people on it. This is a big boat Everyone had a seat on deck. I added two deck chairs, but there is ample room in the cockpit for them. The transom seat is very popular. As the day wears on and people get tired of the sun, the companion seat across from the helm gets busy. The toughtest part of having so much room is keeping track of everyone. As the captain, I take responsibility for everyone at all times and the kids want to be all over this thing. I found myself rounding them all up priior to doing anything and getting them on their butts. In spite of my directives, they want to roam.

The Verado's electronic controls are a masterpiece. If they are as reliable as they are functional, it will be the outboard product of the decade. When you couple the shifter controls with the throttle control and steering, you get a package that really shines. Docking control is amazing. You can get the motors around fast and you never fight the mechanics of shifter cables. The result is smooth and instant control when you need it.

thomasfxlt posted 08-22-2005 05:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     
Bad impeller it was. I'm not sure why it disintegrated, but it did. The gennie had been run at the dealer for about a 1/2 hour after they figured out the panel was bad and replaced it. We shut the intake water off for the ride home and I opened it before I turned the gennie on the next day. Tiz a mystery. Now I own a spare.

handn posted 08-22-2005 07:40 PM ET (US)     Profile for handn  Send Email to handn     
My 225 YamaMercs twist 17p revolution 4's at 5500 rpm which is in the middle of the recomended range. You have more hp and from your performance numbers, I would be hesitant to change props. I doubt you would better you top speed and you are not stressing your engines with too much prop pitch.
I have a Furuno Navnet all in one unit with a thru hull transducer. Yes, it did require a faring block. I get a bottom contour reading down to 1500 feet. I can't say what the performance would be with a transom mount tranducer but the specs on the Furuno transom mount were no where close to the specs of the thru hull.
The snaps on the windshield are easy to move. I use a piece of 1x1 soft pine and move the snap lightly into place with a hammer tap on the pine.
I had generator troubles initially. I burned up one impeller by starting it without a prime. It is easy to prime the generator by unscrewing the sea strainer until water runs out the top.
I had a loose connection in my generator which caused it to shut down because it had no oil pressure. It had oil pressure but there was a loose connection in the generator switch inside the cabin. Since everything has been fixed, the genrator runs perfectly and is a pleasure to have. I went on a two week cruise and used only a half tank of fuel. It burns .4 of a gallon per hour.
There is another 305 owner other than Sideshow and myself who you can find if you archive the forum.
Other than the generator, the other significant problems I had were cabin leak problems. These have all been fixed. If you have a leaky cabin, I can tell you where to look.
Glad you like your new boat.
sideshow posted 08-23-2005 05:35 AM ET (US)     Profile for sideshow  Send Email to sideshow     

Am interested to know where you had your leaks so I can check mine.

handn posted 08-24-2005 11:09 AM ET (US)     Profile for handn  Send Email to handn     
One leak was around the windshield wiper gasket on the port side. The cure was to tighten the wiper harder against the gasket.
Another leak was where the t-top post joined the deck on the port side. Cure, take off the headliner, remove screws and nuts and caulk with 5200,
The last leak was around the rub rail and the port side. Water flowed down the cabin wall when running in heavy seas. Cure, remove rub rail and caulk where hull and deck joined together and also caulk where rub rail attached to hull.
Occasionally, we have minor leaks around the portholes. Cure, clean the salt from around the gaskets and tighten fittings slightly.
Hope this helps.
jimh posted 08-29-2005 01:08 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Re the choice of propellers for VERADO engines which limit the wide-open throttle (WOT) RPM to the low end of the recommended range:

I have some correspondence with Boston Whaler which indicates that the Verado has a broad power band and can develop its rated horsepower even at the low end of the (WOT) RPM range. Thus the choice of propellers can be made with this in mind. It may also be that running a slightly higher pitch propeller improves the fuel economy at cruise speeds.

The power band of a supercharged four-stroke may be different from classic carburetor two-strokes. In two-strokes, long expereince has shown that it is better to pick a propeller that lets the engine wind up all the way to the top of the RPM range. This may not be completely applicable to the VERADO. Mercury may be preparing some additional guidelines to help builders, dealers, and owners choose propellers for VERADO engines with this wide power band in mind.

Peter posted 08-29-2005 02:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for Peter  Send Email to Peter     
The Verado's WOT rating is from 5800 to 6400 (600 RPM delta) which is not very broad at all considering for decades 2-stroke have typically had a 1000 RPM delta. I've read accounts from Verado users on other forums that suggest that a Verado is no different than any other outboard and should be propped to achieve at least 6100 RPM, the midpoint between the lower and upper limits.
jimh posted 08-29-2005 10:28 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Peter--My reading tells me that choosing a propeller that lets the engine wind to the very top of its rated RPM range is a good idea, too. But let's see if Mercury comes out with guidelines for the Verado that are contrary to this.
DaveH posted 08-31-2005 02:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for DaveH  Send Email to DaveH     
I just saw the pictures of your new 305 Conquest on THT. Very nice boat and a great location you have on Summerland.
thomasfxlt posted 08-31-2005 09:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     
Thanks Dave,

I'll keep my eye open for that corvette.

DaveH posted 09-03-2005 04:20 PM ET (US)     Profile for DaveH  Send Email to DaveH     

With regards to the 'Vette, I needed to send this gentleman some documentation for FL registration. He knows how to contact me now if he wishes. Thanks for the kindness.

sideshow posted 09-03-2005 10:27 PM ET (US)     Profile for sideshow  Send Email to sideshow     
305 Conquest Owners

Please read the performance report on the is forum for the 320 Outrage. It has just been posted. Confirms my thoughts on the engines being mounted a bit low.

thomasfxlt posted 09-10-2005 09:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     
I've had the opportunity to put a solid 15 hours on the 305.

Absoultely love the Verado's. I hope they hold up.

My kids love this boat. They can stay out of the sun under the hardtop. They can go down below to have their snack. They love using the walkaround to get to the bow and hang out.

My boat buddy took the helm today so I could roam around under power. I sat on the stern bench seat while cruising and it is clearly a great place to be. Smooth ride and the motors are quiet enough to make it comfortable. The seat is great. I wish the backrest was a bit taller, but that's a minor deal. I'm sure it's fine for most people.

I'm still experimenting with the setup for cruise in rougher sea conditions. She definitely likes to run bow down once the seas get a little snotty. The midship to transom deadrise is not significant enough to come down hard and carve the wave. If you can keep the bow from popping up, the ride is great. Have any of you with this boat tried to trim the motors out and tab the bow down in rougher conditions? I'm going to try that next time out and see what she does. It may help fuel economy. With the bow down, she'll take some spray. I closed the front curtain and no big deal. I didn't have to put down the sides.

I ran the boat 25 miles to the wall early this week in ideal conditions. Wide frequency 2' swells. Awesome and fun.

We snorkled Looe Key today. It's a great dive platform. I've reef fished the rig and run it offshore for Dolphin. It's great in either application. So far, no equipment failures other than the AC unit and I'm pleased. The boat is a pleasure to drive as I've said before. The competition has a tough competitor here.

handn posted 09-12-2005 06:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for handn  Send Email to handn     
I run my 305 with the engines trimed all the way in. If the engines are trimed out even a little bit, speed goes down without changing the throttle.
If the seas are heavy and I am running into them, I throttle back to minimum planing speed (about 13 knots) and use both tabs to put the bow down even more. Interestingly, in these conditions, using the tabs gives the boat a little more speed at the same throttle setting.
If I am taking too much water in 4-5 footers, I trim out and mush along at sub planing speeds, with the bow up making about ten knots and using lots of fuel. The other alternative in really snotty weather is to tack back and forth at minimum planing speed. When doing this, I use one tab or the other to put the side of the boat facing the head sea higher than the other side to minimize spray.
I had additional canvas and velcro sewed onto my curtains around the zippers in the front to cut down on the water that gets into the cockpit.
If the engines are moved up a notch, I am not sure if it will help the performance of the boat since it runs most efficiently with the engines trimmed all the way in.
Also, I would be hesitant to use Mirage props as the minimum planing speed would increase by 2 to 3 knots, decreasing the real world performance of the boat in nasty conditions.
Going down sea is a breeze. The boat is dry, bow steer is minimal and it is blast to go off the top of a big wave and land softly with a big whoosh.
thomasfxlt posted 09-14-2005 08:07 AM ET (US)     Profile for thomasfxlt  Send Email to thomasfxlt     

Your boat slows down as you trim up the motors? Mine speeds up. Hmmm...

If I'm at a modest cruise, 22-25 mph and I start to trim, I increase rpms and the boat speeds up, significantly. I don't understand why you lose power? Same at the higher RPMS.


Peter posted 09-14-2005 08:40 AM ET (US)     Profile for Peter  Send Email to Peter     
Trim tabs functioning properly?
dhlaw posted 09-14-2005 10:38 AM ET (US)     Profile for dhlaw  Send Email to dhlaw     
You need to drop the motors one hole. The X dimension sounds much too high....
handn posted 09-20-2005 10:52 AM ET (US)     Profile for handn  Send Email to handn     
Obviously, there is a difference in lower end configuration of YamaMercs and Verados. The former runs best trimmed all the way in and the latter likes some trim out.
It increases Verado powered boats performance if the motors are raised. Does anyone have any experience raising the motors on YamaMerc powered crafts?
When the Verados are raised, does it make any difference in low speed handling?
sideshow posted 09-20-2005 05:03 PM ET (US)     Profile for sideshow  Send Email to sideshow     
Just raised the Verado's on my 305 fitted with 15 inch Mirage props. Low speed handling has improved. The boat gets out of the hole noticably quicker.

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