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Author Topic:   Differences Between Conquest 23 and 235 Conquest
K Albus posted 08-07-2011 10:15 AM ET (US)   Profile for K Albus   Send Email to K Albus  
I am interested in learning the differences in the hull between the Conquest 23 and the 235 Conquest. I have reviewed Jim H's article about the introduction of the 235 Conquest at the Miami Boat Show, and various other articles available in the forum, but I have not seen any articles identifying specific changes made from the earlier model to the later model.

Boston Whaler's catalog lists the following specifications for the 235 Conquest:

Length Overall: 25 feet, 2 inches
Beam: 8 feet, 6 inches
Draft (Boat Only): 15 inches
Weight (No Engines): 3730 pounds
Maximum Weight Capacity: 3500 pounds
Swamped Capacity: 4400 pounds
Persons Capacity: 12
Maximum Horsepower: 300 hp
Minimum Horsepower: 175 hp
Maximum Engine Weight: 700 pounds
Transom Height: 30 inches
Deadrise at Transom: 20 degrees
Fuel Capacity: 122 gallons
Water Capacity: 12 gallons

I have not been able to locate any similar specifications online for the Conquest 23. I'm hoping that somebody with access to the appropriate catalogs can post the available specifications.

I'm also especially interested in hearing from anybody who has ridden in both hulls regarding any differences in the ride characteristics.

jollyrog305 posted 08-07-2011 11:44 AM ET (US)     Profile for jollyrog305    
Specifications of 2001 23 Conquest

LOA: 22'7" (6.88 m)
Beam: 8'6" (2.59 m)
Draft: 15" (.38 m)
Weight: 3650 lbs. (1655 kg)
Swamped Cap: 4500 lbs. (2041 kg)
Persons: 12

Deck / Cockpit
Self-bailing cockpit
29" interior freeboard
Bow and stern lifting eyes
Welded 316 stainless steel bow rail
8" cleats (2 bow, 2 spring line, 2 stern
with hawse pipes)
Heavy-duty rub rail
Telescoping swim ladder with stainless steel
grab rail
Motorwell drains (2)
Anodized aluminum-framed windshield
with vents
Gunnel-mounted rod holders (4)
Stainless steel cockpit toe rails
Stainless steel grab rails (4)
Stern-mounted rod holders (3)
20-gallon freshwater shower

125-gallon aluminum fuel tank
Bilge pump with float switch
Teleflex hydraulic tilt steering system
Stainless steel steering wheel
Instrumentation and electrical switch panel
Driver's side windshield wiper
Transducer mount area
Navigation lights
Cockpit lighting
Electric horn
Dual battery trays with switches
Mercury single pre-rig
225 XXL OptiMax Mercury engine
3-gallon remote oil tank with deck fill
Hydraulic trim tabs

Cabin Interior
Opening hatch with screen
Opening portholes with screens (2)
Cabin light
Lockable cabin door
Easy-clean interior materials
Backrest bolsters
Throw pillows (2)
Porta potti with deck pump-out

Bow anchor locker with drain
Bow storage lockers under V-berth
Under-gunnel rod racks
Cabin interior rod racks
Port and starboard side panel storage in helm area
In-deck fishbox with drain
Lockable port and starboard storage under seat
bases with drains
Lockable electronics box with removable door and
storage bag
Drink holders
Fire extinguisher pocket
Battery and oil storage

Sliding helm and companion seats with cushions
Hideaway stern bench seat
Helm and passenger footrests
Aft-facing seat cushions

Notable Options / Accessories
Mercury dual pre-rig
135 CXL OptiMax Mercury engines (dual)
150 CXL OptiMax Mercury engines (dual)
OptiMax Smart Craft deluxe gauge package
Striping and graphics (red or blue) with
matching cabin bolsters and pillows
Bow pulpit with roller
Bow pulpit with windlass and rode
154-gallon fuel tank in place of standard tank
Hard top with radial topgun outriggers, electronics
box, cockpit floodlight, dome light and rod holders (4)
Hard top with electronics box and cockpit floodlight,
dome light and rod holders (4)
Porta potti with deck pump-out, macerator and
overboard discharge
V-berth filler with cushion

Fishing Package (includes the following)
Fishbox pump-out
Livewell with raw-water washdown
Tackle drawer
Cockpit coaming bolsters

Sun top with boot (red or blue)
Weather curtain set: side curtains, visor and aft
drop curtain (red or blue) sun top or hard top
Gray pedestal seat cover

K Albus posted 08-07-2011 03:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Thanks for the specs, jollyrog. Is there anybody out there that knows the deadrise at the transom for the Conquest 23?
prj posted 08-09-2011 12:05 PM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
What years were these possibly different boats produced, respectively?

Are you also reviewing and considering the 21 and 23 foot Walkaround models designed by the Blackwatch fellow under the auspices of Reebok (I believe)?

I know you traveled the North Channel and Georgian Bay with each of those models and expect you got a close up look at them. While I don't want to discourage your 5 foot-itis, the 2-3 foot increment is a more traditional jump.


K Albus posted 08-09-2011 01:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
I believe the most recent version, the 235 Conquest, first appeared in the 2005 model year. Jim H wrote about its debut at the Miami Boat Show: . I've heard reports that the earlier Conquest 23 doesn't have a great ride. I'm wondering if the ride improved with the newer model.

The main reason that I am considering a new boat is because I particularly enjoy "trailer-boat cruising" on the big waters of the Great Lakes. My Dauntless 180 is a little bit small for that particular activity. Boats I am considering, in current order of preference, include: Pursuit 235 Offshore (also previously known as the Denali 235); Boston Whaler Conquest 235; Boston Whaler 23 Walk-Around; Boston Whaler Revenge 22 Walk-Through with Whaler Drive; Boston Whaler 21 Walk-Around; Boston Whaler Conquest 210/Eastport 205. One thing I don't want is a project boat.

I'm in no particular hurry to buy a bigger boat. My big trip for this summer has just ended, and there is currently no trip yet planned for next summer. If no big trips pop up on the planning radar, I may keep my Dauntless for another year.

diveorfish posted 08-09-2011 06:06 PM ET (US)     Profile for diveorfish  Send Email to diveorfish     
The deadrise at the transom is 20 degrees.

I asked Boston Whaler.

tom976 posted 08-10-2011 11:35 AM ET (US)     Profile for tom976  Send Email to tom976     
The 23' needed a few things to make it a good whaler. Trim tabs were an option that boat should have come with by default. Many had them put on as I did after the fact. (I put them on myself)

As for the ride? I really dont have any complaints. I've been out in sloppy weather and its been a dry boat.
Its the same hull as the outrage of that vintage/size.

martyn1075 posted 08-10-2011 06:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
I think the big difference is the transom. The 235 is squared of with one option of a single motor. The 23 Conquest (non Reebok) has a integrated transom much like the bigger Conquests 25 and up even the current models use it like the 305. The 23 conquest could be setup as a twin arrangement. If I recall the 23 Conquest is one sturdy 23 foot whaler not to say the 235 isn't but its a very stocky boat a huge jump up form the 21 Conquest a quite a bit smaller brother of the 23.

In comparison the older 21 conquest (not Reebok style) reminds me more of the current 235 Conquest if you know what I mean. The 23 Conquest reminds me of a current 255.

martyn1075 posted 08-11-2011 02:03 PM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
Further on the transom there is a door on the 23 Conquest to the platform which is a nice big boat feature offered on the larger models the 235 does not offer the door.
tom976 posted 08-12-2011 11:06 AM ET (US)     Profile for tom976  Send Email to tom976     
martyn1075, the 23 conquest was originally designed for twin engines. In order for whaler to price compete with grady etc they came up with single engine setups. Single engine conquests had to have lead weight added in the stern area to keep it from getting too bow heavy.

Mine is still from the vintage when whaler was putting on Yamaha motors on their transoms. People who asked me about it were surprised mine was the original motor that came with the boat.

I believe 1998 and newer normally had Merc on em when new.

martyn1075 posted 08-12-2011 11:54 AM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
tom976 interesting about the lead. My point was the 23 Conquest had the option due to its structure in the transom design the new one doesn't it can only handle a single. The single may be all that people would ever need in a 23 foot boat but the option was really nice to have I think but then again if you have to carry lead around I'm not sure anymore.
K Albus posted 08-12-2011 12:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for K Albus  Send Email to K Albus     
Are there three different variations of the Conquest in this size range, i.e., the 23 Conquest, the 230 Conquest, and the Conquest 235? If so, have the differences between these models been cataloged here (or anywhere else)? Does anybody know the years for the various models and the major differences between them?
tom976 posted 08-15-2011 10:03 AM ET (US)     Profile for tom976  Send Email to tom976     
I don't have the lead in mine. It was an option but I didnt find it entirely necessary. The boat is bow heavy compared to others but that does help when wanting to go through the nasty stuff.

K Albus, the 23 Conquest and 230 Conquest are one and the same. Technically its a 230 but its basically a 23' Conquest. Some say tomato some say tomaaaato.

jimh posted 08-15-2011 06:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
The 235 CONQUEST is a fairly recent model. I got a chance to go aboard and get a look at one--actually the 235 CONQUEST prototype hull that was being worked on in the special fabrication shop in Edgewater--when I visited the Boston Whaler factory in March of 2005. I had the pleasure of getting a tour of the boat by the head of Whaler Engineering. (See more comments on this boat in ).

As I recall, the 235 CONQUEST was intended to be a trailer-able boat, that is, the beam was intentionally kept at 8-feet 6-inches, the widest trailer width permitted on most highways without special permits.

For many years at Boston Whaler there was a re-use of hull molds for different models, and you'd see the same hull built as a center console and as a cuddy cabin. The newer designs like the 235 CONQUEST all have their own unique hull designs. This means the hull was designed from the start to be a cabin boat, and it won't be bow heavy as some other designs have been in which a shared hull design was used. On the 235 CONQUEST the cockpit gunwale height also seems to have been lowered, making the boat more like a classic Boston Whaler hull. On some of the other CONQUEST models the cockpit gunwale height is higher, giving the boat a different look and feel.

In almost all catalogue photographs of the 235 CONQUEST you see the optional hard top on the boat. I don't think I have ever seen a 235 CONQUEST--in person or in photographs--without the optional hard top. It would be interesting to see the boat without the hard top, for several reasons. First, the hard top is an expensive option, many thousands of dollars. It also adds 2-feet 6-inches of height to the boat. When on a trailer this can make for problems in vertical clearance. It can also make for more expensive storage options, too. The hard top also adds weight and wind resistance. The elaborately bent and welded aluminum tubing frame that supports the hard top is beautifully crafted, but it obstructs some sight lines.

Whaler lists optional canvas for the 235 CONQUEST, with a sun top and weather curtains available. But they don't show any photographs. I think you could have a very comfortable enclosed helm with the right canvas.

The 235 CONQUEST is designed only for a single engine. I don't see this as a problem in the modern era. The hull is rated to 300-HP. Now back in 1985 you could not get more than about 200-HP in a single outboard engine. A boat like this would be set-up with twin 150-HP engines. In 2011 you can easily get a 300-HP single engine--if you want that much power on the boat. Looking at the performance data we see:

225-HP = 43.3-MPH
250-HP = 45.9-MPH
300-HP = 49.5-MPH

Having a bit of experience in making long cruises in a boat of this size, you seldom want to go even 43.3-MPH. If I were selecting an engine for a 235 CONQUEST I would go with the 225-HP option because it cruises at 2.9-MPG at 25-MPH. That is very good fuel economy at a cruising speed that will be very comfortable.

I would not put an auxiliary motor on a 235 CONQUEST. I doubt many are set up with an auxiliary, perhaps only for the real die hard fishermen. Most fishermen won't want a cuddy cabin boat, anyways.

The 235 CONQUEST has a generous cockpit. The helm is moved somewhat forward, and this makes the cabin a bit compact. I did not actually crawl into the cabin and test the berths. One very nice feature of classic Boston Whaler cabin boats like the REVENGE is the berths are seven-feet long. The 235 CONQUEST berths looked shorter.

The 235 CONQUEST is quite a beast on a trailer. The dry boat is 3,730-lbs. The VERADO is another 700-lbs, and its rigging and accessories at least another 100-lbs. Add some fuel, water, gear, and the usual stuff on boats like this, and I would suspect the total boat weight will be over 5,000-lbs. (The performance data shows a test boat weight of 5,344-lbs.)

A trailer that can handle a 5,000-lbs boat will probably weight at least 1,500-lbs itself (if steel). This means the total towed weight on the trailer will be around 6,500-lbs. You will need a studly tow vehicle to pull the 235 CONQUEST up a steep ramp and tow it at highway speeds for long distances.

David Pendleton posted 08-15-2011 10:06 PM ET (US)     Profile for David Pendleton  Send Email to David Pendleton     
Kevin, Jim is right; there's a reason I tow with a diesel.
martyn1075 posted 08-16-2011 03:39 AM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
Boston Whaler is very clever if you look at their walk-around models from the once produced 205 conquest through to the current 255 they always left out an option that the next model up has. For example the 205 was cool but it left out insulated storage box's no problem the 235 has it. Oh but it would sure be nice to have full transom flexible for fishing yet offering ample space for family outings with pull out bench and transom door for easy access. No problem welcome to the 255. Or your could just buy a older 23 Conquest and you have it all as well a price tag that is probably much less than half of a new 255 Conquest.
diveorfish posted 08-17-2011 12:30 PM ET (US)     Profile for diveorfish  Send Email to diveorfish     
They are both good boats. Martyn1075 is probably right. If you could find a 23 conquest with twins you would have the total offshore-nearshore-lakeshore package at a good price.

I dont know for sure, but I would bet that the 235 Conquest rides a bit better in a head sea and the 23 Conquest is more stable and recovers faster. The 23 Conquest hull for some reason really does well in sloppy seas and if you keep the bow down the head sea ride is respectable. Looking at the 235 Conquest, the boat is 6 inches longer and the Vee looks to be a bit deeper in the front so you would probably ride better in a head sea.

Things I personally like better on the 23 Conquest is the euro-transom with transom door. It really makes getting in and out of the boat much easier. I also like the higher freeboard as well as it is more secure, but that is an opinion call because many hate the euro-transom and prefer lower freeboard. I also like that the 23 Conquest is really built for twins for offshore use. Again, that is just an opinion as twins are more costly.

Bella con23 posted 08-19-2011 11:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for Bella con23  Send Email to Bella con23     
As a 5 year owner of a 1999 23 Conquest I can tell you that the above posts are all valid responses. "Bella" was equipped with a Mercury 225 and no lead option.

The only time I noticed a balance difference is when we returned to the dock and washed down the boat. I would have to ask the kids to sit on the stern to keep the water flowing in that direction.

The boat balance was just over the center towards the bow but was never a problem with rain water as the weight of the water would always favor the stern and therefore allowed the bilge pump to evacuate the excess water.

Even after leaving the transom drain plug out for the night the boat tipped toward the stern.
See -

I handled this boat in many different seas and situations and never felt compromised. This includes 4-5 foot seas 20-25 miles off Cape Hatteras.

I towed the boat from central NJ to Cape Hatteras with a 2007 Infiniti QX56 (fancy Nissan Armada.) This SUV was is rated 9000 lb towing capacity and is quite capable of towing the load of a 23 Conquest and steel trailer totaling approximately 7000 lbs.

On flat terrain I was looking in the rear view to insure it was still there, but I felt it's presence in the hills of Southern NJ.

I will also say that I would not have owned the 23 Conquest without the hardtop option. However, I would like to "feel" this boat without the hardtop only because as Jim H. suggested it must add considerable weight towards top heaviness.

As the above responses suggest, this is a heavy and well built boat. My 23 Conquest outclassed my previous 24 SeaRay Weekender on many levels. One advantage my 24 SeaRay 260 V8 inboard/outboard had over the 23 Conquest was fuel mileage. I believe the 24 SeaRay was capable of at least 3 MPG compared to my 23 Conquest at 1.8 MPG at best.

Good luck with your decision and feel free to contact me with any additional questions.

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