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Author Topic:   Rage Models
pglein posted 07-19-2005 04:50 PM ET (US)   Profile for pglein   Send Email to pglein  
I did a search for info about Rage models and I know there's a lot out there, but I was wondering if we could sort of consolodate some of the pertinent information about them into one place.

I was hoping there was a Cetacea page dedicated to them, but I didn't find one. Maybe an idea for the future?

Anway, the reason I ask is because a friend of mine wants to buy a boat. He is mostly interested in buying a Yamaha type jet boat. That doesn't quite compute to me, since I have no need for a jet boat. But he explained to me and I guess it makes sense. While he will frequently be using his boat here in the deep waters of Puget Sound where prop boats are king, he also wants to use it on the rivers and shallow lakes of his home town near Portland, OR. So I guess a jet boat makes sense for him. However, he's also an avid fisherman and him and I have had great fun lately setting and pulling crab pots from my 13'. So, I'm not sure that a Yamaha type jet boat really meets his needs from a functionality standpoint. Enter the Rage series of boats.

From what I can tell, the Rage boats seem to be the best mix between the go-fast fun of a jet boat, and the no frills utility of a traditional Boston Whaler. The only other option would be some sort of aluminum jet powered river boat, but their flat bottoms are not appropriate for the waters of Puget Sound.

Anyway, I want to make some recommendations to him about the Rage boats and what years/models to avoid and look for. I know there are some well known problems with certain engines, but I can't recall precisely which are to be avoided and what those problems are.

Anyone have any advice for someone considering a Rage?

where2 posted 07-19-2005 11:48 PM ET (US)     Profile for where2  Send Email to where2     
A wealth of information at your service... Ask away with the questions.

The Boston Whaler Rage: Someone check Tom Clark's CD, I am thinking it was introduced around '92-'93 as a 13'-14' model with a Yamaha 650cc Wave Runner III engine mounted under the center console. From there, we progressed in '94-'96 using a 14'-15' hull and either a 90Hp or 115Hp OMC Turbojet (essentially a typical OMC powerhead with slight modifications attached to an "inboard" jet pump, engine was mounted under a large stern hatch) The final years were the '96-'97 15' Rage was powered by a 175Hp Mercury Sportjet powerplant (ask Tuna1 about that model, he owns two). '97-'98 also offered the 18' Rage (looks like a Ventura: bow-rider dual console, powered by a 351W Ford, coupled to an American Turbine jet pump)

General problems: Short lived model with many different engine offerings. As such, it suffers from gross generalizations which may or may not apply to a particular hull & engine combination. Although the early models with 50-90Hp engines may be generalized as "under powered", the later 15' models with 115Hp-175Hp, and the 18' with a 351 Ford are not generally considered "under powered".

Weeds are a general problem with any jet boat, regardless of make, model, or horsepower. Jetboats are plagued by weeds in ways you don't understand until you run one in a weedy area. The OMC Turbojet (and possibly others) used the jet pump as a cooling water source. Any weeds which go through the jet pump are sliced and diced and have a possibility of running through the cooling system of the engine powerhead. Many Rages were either retrofitted or factory offered with raw water strainers which collect the "salad" before it begins to clog the passages of the engine. However, you do have to realize when you've run through weeds and need to check the strainer occasionally while running the boat.

The 1995 15' Rage I own is powered by a 115Hp OMC Turbojet. It runs 34mph at WOT with one person aboard. It has LOADS of storage space unimagineable in any other 15' boat. Without any trim tabs or nozzle trim as standard, it runs at one attitude while on plane, and cannot be trimmed like an outboard powered boat (to vary the bow entry into a chop). It has higher freeboard than a classic 15' Sport, and can be operated from its center console in a standing position if you are shorter than 6' tall. She carries 23 gallons of fuel, which seems like a lot until you recognize the ineffiency of a jet drive. If I had to make an educated stab at it, I'd say the Rage burns twice the fuel of my 1985 15' Sport powered by a 1985 70Hp Johnson. (an outboard is more efficient at idle speeds, and high speeds due to the direct thrust applied by the propeller).

In order to be a "ball of fun", your friend will want atleast a 115Hp model. As many forum members tend to lean toward maximizing the horsepower on their outboard powered hulls, the 15' Rage is probably the "most fun" in it's last rendition packing the 175Hp Mercury Sportjet. The engines are not interchangeable between Rage models, so Do Not expect to purchase an OMC powered hull and drop a crated Mercury Sportjet into it. Tuna1 claims his 175Hp models will run 60mph+ which is considerably faster than the 115Hp I own. That being said, as with all small boats the top speed on choppy water will be reduced to whatever the driver can bear. The 15' Rage is not a "big water" boat in terms of hull design. It may rank on the same level of comfort as your 13' when Puget Sound begins to get choppy.

Most of the advice you will likely see says "Avoid the Rage's like the Plague". However, having owned one for a year now, I actually like the quirky little girl. My wife was quite skeptical at first. However, after one 180° spin, a large smile grew on her face and she said "You can keep the Sport, this Whaler's mine. That was fun, lets do it again!"

jimh posted 07-20-2005 12:57 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Complete specifications and production history have been available for some time. See:

Larry posted 07-20-2005 11:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for Larry  Send Email to Larry     
does anyone know how many Rages were made?
pglein posted 07-21-2005 02:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for pglein  Send Email to pglein     

Thanks for posting the specs. I had seen those. What I'm mostly looking for is owner experiences. Especially the quirks of each model. I vaguely remember people expressing some opinions on certain models and I am hoping some people can chime in.

I actually think the Rage models are probably deserving of a Cetacea page.


Thanks so much for your input. That was quite informative.

BOB KEMMLER JR posted 07-21-2005 08:23 PM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
Depending on his pocket book,definately get the 175 Merc sportjet powered Rage.Damn near bulletproof and stock will do 55 mph+
TRAFFICLAWYER posted 07-21-2005 09:16 PM ET (US)     Profile for TRAFFICLAWYER    
"I actually think the Rage models are probably deserving of a Cetacea page."

There is a dedicated area on your computer called the Recycle Bin where Rage info should be stored.

Larry posted 07-22-2005 10:11 AM ET (US)     Profile for Larry  Send Email to Larry     
Go chase an ambulance!
BOB KEMMLER JR posted 07-22-2005 11:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for BOB KEMMLER JR    
whoz yer daddy posted 07-22-2005 07:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for whoz yer daddy  Send Email to whoz yer daddy     

Your friend will also discover, as did I, the there is a very wide range of prices for rages, mostly depending on engine condition (although overall condition of hull, seats etc will impact price as well). I paid $5500 for my '95 rage 15 eariler this summer, which is pretty much top dollar, but the boat was litterally like new, and I doubt the 115 turbo jet had more than 100 hours on it. I have seen the same boat sell for as little as $2000, but the enging was shot and parts can be hard to get for those OMC's. There is a company out there called Turbo Marine that bought up most of the OMC oem parts when OMC tubed, if your friend ends up with the 115 (or 90) OMC, he will want to know about them. Don't let the bad expieriences of a few unlucky people taint your opinion too much, I read this site often and there are plenty of horror stories about outboards giving people fits. Good maintainence and proper care are the key (where2 ain't kid'in about that strainer, and there are a few more tricks to keep the engine cool), but you have to have a little bit of luck thrown in!

Good Luck, it's a fine boat and I get tons of compliments whenever I'm beached on a sandbar with other boats!


pglein posted 07-25-2005 01:46 AM ET (US)     Profile for pglein  Send Email to pglein     
Well, now he's got his mind set on a simple Sea Ray bowrider. He gave up on the jet boat concept once he started thinking about the fuel economy and how rare he was going to use it in the rivers.
where2 posted 07-25-2005 12:30 PM ET (US)     Profile for where2  Send Email to where2     
First you said "He's an avid fisherman"..."We've had great fun pulling crab pots", then you said "He's got his mind set on a simple Sea Ray Bowrider"?

I guess he wants some place comfy to sit while he fishes? Most people I know who fish seem to avoid the bowriders entirely, since they're usually not rigged for fishing. No Livewell, no pole holders, no tackle drawers, no rod storage under the gunnel. (just a casual observation)

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