Choosing Skiff: ?Egret 189 ?Ranger Ghost 184 ?Hewes Redfisher 18 - Troubled by choice

Ghost147Ghost147 Posts: 30 Deckhand
Hi all,

I am from Australia and fish a fair bit in the bay. Hence, currently I use a bay-type boat which crosses over to being a flats boat when chasing such flats species. However, in certain areas, chasing Golden Trevally on the flats, Aussie Permit, etc, a flats skiff would be ideal. Some of the guides are using the Hewes Redfisher which seems to perform well, however, I'm in my research phase and currently after looking at some forums, sites, reviews, etc, also, personal asthetic tastes, I've come down to a few choices:
Ranger Ghost 184
Egret 189
Hewes Redfisher 18

The Egret 189 has become top of my list.

I understand the differences between a technical poling skiff and a flats skiff so that is not exactly the issue. I also know, no matter what boat you are in, a cross wind, cross current spray is generally going to occur. I'm looking for you forumites who have extensive experience with these types of skiffs to provide the pros, cons, advantages and disadvantages, differences in the hull design and construction if possible to enable me to make a good informed choice.

To get to the areas where I fish, at times it can become choppy, especially during strong tidal surges. Most times, I am not going out to fish rough weather as the fish I chase do not respond to such, hence chasing pelagics such as mackerel and longtail tuna would not be a problem in a skiff.

I hope that information helps somewhat. And thank you for your responses


Michael
East Coast Sportfishing Ventures
International Federation of Fly Fishers Certified Casting Instructor
International Federation of Fly Fishers Fly Tying Group Member

Brisbane, Australia

"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."
Martin Luther King Jr., 1963
"Just because a fish swims away, it does not mean it will survive! Think about your fish handling methods!"

Replies

  • FS DanFS Dan Posts: 2,325 Moderator
    http://forums.floridasportsman.com/showthread.php?89495-Egret-189-Build

    Renegade posted a build of a beautiful 18, he liked it so much he upgraded to the 2011

    http://forums.floridasportsman.com/showthread.php?87557-Egret-2011-Dream-Build-Thread

    another beautiful boat.

    With their rough water ability, and flat/bay layout, it sounds like an egret would suit your needs nicely.

    CMD
    Formerly Catmandew
  • Ghost147Ghost147 Posts: 30 Deckhand
    Thanks for the thread information CMD.

    The build quality of the Egret is incredible. I'm in awe of the attention to detail with every part of that boat. The Egret is certainly a special designed boat. I guess it is more difficult for me as I live in Australia, however, I'll make contact with Egret Company and go from there. Thanks you very much.

    Michael
    East Coast Sportfishing Ventures
    International Federation of Fly Fishers Certified Casting Instructor
    International Federation of Fly Fishers Fly Tying Group Member

    Brisbane, Australia

    "The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."
    Martin Luther King Jr., 1963
    "Just because a fish swims away, it does not mean it will survive! Think about your fish handling methods!"
  • FS DanFS Dan Posts: 2,325 Moderator
    Even though its called Florida sportsman, we are happy to help anyone, from anywhere. You never know when someone may return the favor with request for info on Australia.

    We have several members who have owned more than one egret, so if you have any specific questions. They are a wealth of information.

    CMD
    Formerly Catmandew
  • VeroDDVeroDD Posts: 297 Deckhand
    I agree, the Egret is a terrific boat. I have owned 3 Maverick/Hewes/Pathinder boats and they are good also. You might want to consider the Maverick 18.5 Master Angler instead of the Redfisher. I think it is more comparable to the Egret.
  • gumgatorgumgator Posts: 124 Officer
    Egret is on different level all together. If you have to cross any open water, the Egret will get you there drier and more comfortable than the rest.
    a733be5f-c7db-41a8-912c-98a88c9a32ca.jpg
  • MonomanMonoman Posts: 977 Officer
    Call Frank at Egret. Also, there is an active Egret section here... http://forums.floridasportsman.com/forumdisplay.php?70-Egret-Boats
    This signature intentionally left blank.
  • Renagade69Renagade69 Posts: 1,213 Officer
    The Egret is a great choice for the conditions you fish in. Do you pole your boat? If you plan on using a trolling motor to get you moving on the flats then consider an Egret 2011(20'11'') model. It floats in the same depth of water but as hard to believe as it is can handle more rough water than the 189.You are not going to pole it though. Let me know if you have any questions.

    Build thread here http://forums.floridasportsman.com/showthread.php?87557-Egret-2011-Dream-Build-Thread
  • Ghost147Ghost147 Posts: 30 Deckhand
    There is an issue that I have been researching with the Egrets which I'm sure you guys will be able to answer.

    Two issues have been raised in my research:
    a. hull slap
    b. poling

    I will be poling the skiff on the flats as I'll be chasing Golden Trevally, Aussie Permit and other species, so the Egret 189 is more my consideration over the 2011. So, I do need the vessel to be poling friendly.

    Secondly, chasing tuna, mackerel and other species it requires a fairly "silent" approach and hence hull slap needs to be kept to a minimum. I will be using a trolling motor as certain areas I am in are not poling areas but rather trolling areas around shallow reef bay islands chasing species like Australian Snapper, Emperor, Sweetlip, etc.

    I'm not fishing overall rough water, as rough water around the bay is quite dangerous overall and becomes quite unfishable waterways, so most times, "rough" water is very manageable here. I wouldn't be taking clients out as the cross current and cross winds with shallow waters creating turbulence are not nice all-round, even in my vessel now.

    So, hopefully you'll be able to let me know about the experiences you guys are having with the Egrets and also, why is it therefore, if the issues are not really major, that others see massive problems and hence have steered away from the Egret. Is it because they are more looking at a technical poling skiff?

    Michael
    East Coast Sportfishing Ventures
    International Federation of Fly Fishers Certified Casting Instructor
    International Federation of Fly Fishers Fly Tying Group Member

    Brisbane, Australia

    "The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."
    Martin Luther King Jr., 1963
    "Just because a fish swims away, it does not mean it will survive! Think about your fish handling methods!"
  • T-shirt BobT-shirt Bob Posts: 160 Officer
    I had concerns about hull slap when I bought my 16 Egret because I was coming from a Maverick HPX which is absolutely silent. The Egret is slappy but I have learned that there are only a couple of chop directions that bother it - 95 times out of 100 I can just setup from an angle where it isn't an issue and the boat is super stealthy. For what it's worth, I can't remember my old Hewes LT 18 (pretty much the same mold as the redfisher) being any more quiet than my Egret. Can't speak for the Ranger product.
  • Saltwater JunkieSaltwater Junkie Posts: 982 Officer
    Ghost147 wrote: »
    There is an issue that I have been researching with the Egrets which I'm sure you guys will be able to answer.

    Two issues have been raised in my research:
    a. hull slap
    b. poling

    I will be poling the skiff on the flats as I'll be chasing Golden Trevally, Aussie Permit and other species, so the Egret 189 is more my consideration over the 2011. So, I do need the vessel to be poling friendly.

    Secondly, chasing tuna, mackerel and other species it requires a fairly "silent" approach and hence hull slap needs to be kept to a minimum. I will be using a trolling motor as certain areas I am in are not poling areas but rather trolling areas around shallow reef bay islands chasing species like Australian Snapper, Emperor, Sweetlip, etc.

    I'm not fishing overall rough water, as rough water around the bay is quite dangerous overall and becomes quite unfishable waterways, so most times, "rough" water is very manageable here. I wouldn't be taking clients out as the cross current and cross winds with shallow waters creating turbulence are not nice all-round, even in my vessel now.

    So, hopefully you'll be able to let me know about the experiences you guys are having with the Egrets and also, why is it therefore, if the issues are not really major, that others see massive problems and hence have steered away from the Egret. Is it because they are more looking at a technical poling skiff?

    Michael

    You've come to the right place....here you will find some of the most passionate boat owners on any forum. That is the best way to discribe Egret Boat Owners.

    I own an 18 Egret and have had it longer than many of the of the other owners that will chime in this conversation. That being said. I can tell you from expierence that the boat does have hull slap. It's not a boat that everybody will pole all day. Maybe somebody can, I can't. When I find myself in windy conditions I Like to put my self so the wind is at my back, making the boat very quiet. Additionally, the boat spins or pivots very well to change direction. The boat is also very well balanced and the bow does not blow off in the wind. I have caught many tailing Redfish and tailing Bonefish out of this boat. This boat will broaden your fishing areas as it is so vertsital. The Egret 18 is one of those boat that you can buy without a sea trail, based solely on it reputation.

    I could talk to you about this boat for an hour. But, I'll end with what I've said in the past..."I wouldn't trade you my used Egret for a new anything else in it's class". That should tell you something. Call Frank...Pete Silot
  • SEARUNNERSEARUNNER Posts: 284 Deckhand
    You should also toss the Action Craft 1890 in the hat to look at as well. I think the 1890 Action Craft and 18 Egret are the two best flats boats out there. My 2 cents anyways...
  • Saltwater JunkieSaltwater Junkie Posts: 982 Officer
    You've come to the right place....here you will find some of the most passionate boat owners on any forum. That is the best way to discribe Egret Boat Owners.

    I own an 18 Egret and have had it longer than many of the of the other owners that will chime in this conversation. That being said. I can tell you from expierence that the boat does have hull slap. It's not a boat that everybody will pole all day. Maybe somebody can, I can't. When I find myself in windy conditions I Like to put my self so the wind is at my back, making the boat very quiet. Additionally, the boat spins or pivots very well to change direction. The boat is also very well balanced and the bow does not blow off in the wind. I have caught many tailing Redfish and tailing Bonefish out of this boat. This boat will broaden your fishing areas as it is so vertsital. The Egret 18 is one of those boat that you can buy without a sea trail, based solely on it reputation.

    I could talk to you about this boat for an hour. But, I'll end with what I've said in the past..."I wouldn't trade you my used Egret for a new anything else in it's class". That should tell you something. Call Frank...Pete Silot

    Michael. Here is a link to the USCG test on a 18 Egret. http://forums.floridasportsman.com/showthread.php?62005-Egret-189-Coast-Guard-Test

    About the Vantage, I've never been in one. But from looking at the pictures on the web. If I were to throw a 40 to 50lbs. Cobia in the deck there wouldn't be any fishing rods left to go fishing for the rest of the day. That's not a problem in the Egret.

    Send me your email address and I'll tell you about the boat in detail. my email address is: capt.petesilot@gmail.com

    Best Regards.. Pete
  • Ghost147Ghost147 Posts: 30 Deckhand
    Thanks guys for the information. It has given me a lot to think about and certainly I think my decision has been made easier than when I started this research.

    Michael
    East Coast Sportfishing Ventures
    International Federation of Fly Fishers Certified Casting Instructor
    International Federation of Fly Fishers Fly Tying Group Member

    Brisbane, Australia

    "The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."
    Martin Luther King Jr., 1963
    "Just because a fish swims away, it does not mean it will survive! Think about your fish handling methods!"
  • esteroestero Posts: 2,037 Captain
    NOTHING IS POLITICALLY RIGHT THAT IS MORALLY WRONG
    ___Abraham Lincoln
  • Capt. Gregg McKeeCapt. Gregg McKee Posts: 201 Officer
    I agree with Estero. You really should take a look at the 18 foot Beavertail BT3 or Vengeance/BTV. Mine has a true 8 inch draft, poles dead silent, easily handles the same types of open waters that you've described, and has a fit and finish comparable to the Egret or Hell's Bay.
  • Capt. Gregg McKeeCapt. Gregg McKee Posts: 201 Officer
    Forgot to mention that a really loaded BT3 will run you in the low $40k range.
  • Renagade69Renagade69 Posts: 1,213 Officer
    Ghost147 wrote: »
    Thanks guys for the information. It has given me a lot to think about and certainly I think my decision has been made easier than when I started this research.

    Michael
    Glad we helped. One day I hope to fish your neck of the woods. Post some build pictures if you have one made.
  • Ghost147Ghost147 Posts: 30 Deckhand
    Estero and Capt. Gregg,

    I thank you for providing another skiff as an option. I agree, it is a beautifully designed skiff like a lot of the other brands on the market. The greatest issue though is the fuel capacity and knowing the type of runs I do in certain areas, it won't suffice unfortunately. This is where the Egret 56 gallon tank, along with its design as well has been leading the decision making process for me.

    Regards

    Michael
    East Coast Sportfishing Ventures
    International Federation of Fly Fishers Certified Casting Instructor
    International Federation of Fly Fishers Fly Tying Group Member

    Brisbane, Australia

    "The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."
    Martin Luther King Jr., 1963
    "Just because a fish swims away, it does not mean it will survive! Think about your fish handling methods!"
  • esteroestero Posts: 2,037 Captain
    That's a lot of fuel. Good luck and let us know how you did. (Fish pictures) on the Egret....................
    NOTHING IS POLITICALLY RIGHT THAT IS MORALLY WRONG
    ___Abraham Lincoln
  • Ghost147Ghost147 Posts: 30 Deckhand
    Well,

    After all the helpful information and advice, I can certainly say I have made that decision and now looking towards financing the vessel. After looking at numerous skiffs, I can certainly say that it is amazing the quality of design and workmanship that is done on each vessel and that to all skiff brands, is to be commended. I can also say, that in Australia, we are very much behind in relation to the exemplary detailing.

    I have decided upon the Egret 189 and now I'm on the sketch book designing each aspect of the vessel. Essentially it is only tweaks in terms of console design, push pole holders, push pole platform, rod lockers, etc.

    It was not only the design of the Egret 189 that really had me in that direction, but also its fuel capacity. 56 gallons is a heck of a lot, however, some of the runs in Hervey Bay, you don't want to be thinking about, "how much fuel do I have left". Furthermore, the USCG test blew me out of the water and that is the type of vessel that is required to pass the Marine Safety Test here in Australia.

    It will take a little time to get it all together and finance the whole deal, however, I can most certainly say, that Australia will have its first Egret 189 on for all show and hopefully, some of the guys will towards purchasing an Egret in the future.

    Thanks to all for the information that you have provided. It has all helped in making that decision.

    Michael
    East Coast Sportfishing Ventures
    International Federation of Fly Fishers Certified Casting Instructor
    International Federation of Fly Fishers Fly Tying Group Member

    Brisbane, Australia

    "The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."
    Martin Luther King Jr., 1963
    "Just because a fish swims away, it does not mean it will survive! Think about your fish handling methods!"
  • esteroestero Posts: 2,037 Captain
    Good luck with your new boat and let us see some fish pictures from it..........................
    NOTHING IS POLITICALLY RIGHT THAT IS MORALLY WRONG
    ___Abraham Lincoln

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