Trim tabs make a boat ride larger? How much larger?

fishonfishon Posts: 970 Officer
How much larger would a typical 20 ft bay boat feel with trim tabs added? Or would a 16/18 ft with trim tabs ride similar to a 20ft with out? Just trying to get a feeling of how much better ride one can look forward to by adding trim tabs? Thanks
Triton 1870 Bay Sport, 115 merc. 4/stroke,
Fish Shallow saltwater, lakes central Fl. And Lake Oconee Ga.
Live in Lakeland


  • FS DanFS Dan Posts: 2,353 Moderator
    Trim tabs wont make your boat any bigger. Its just a saying. What they do is give you added control of your boats attitude while running through the water. By allowing you to run bow down thru choppy water, your hull shape can split the water. Think of jumping off the diving board, would you rather knife in or bellyflop. Its the same priciple at work when running thru a chop, each on-coming wave contacts the boat, the tabs let you decide where.

    This allows you to use the boat to its full advantages, thus a 16 being used to its full advantage might equal an 18 that isnt. Hull design will also play a factor.

    Formerly Catmandew
  • CaptTaterCaptTater Posts: 20,096 AG
    9" ones add 9" to the running surface. :) As said the key is letting you use different parts of the hull for the right part. I won't another monohull without them.
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  • Jeff2011Jeff2011 Posts: 26 Greenhorn
    I added tabs to my SV2100, totally different boat in moderate to heavy chop. Best investment added to date!
  • ChuckDChuckD Posts: 1,474 Officer
    20' bay boat with tabs = 35' sport fisher. :hairraiser

    Like said above, on smaller boats, they make a very noticable difference. I really can't imagine owning any boat going forward without them.
  • VertigoVertigo Yankeetown, FLPosts: 617 Officer
    I've owned and own boats with tabs and without. The usefulness of tabs really depends on the boat. Most bay boat designs will benefit from tabs, which can counteract porpoising, help to jump up on plane, counteract an unbalanced load, help to run more comfortably in chop, etc. OTOH, a well designed hull may not need the assistance of tabs to do the job for which it was intended. You might find that you can get most of the benefit of tabs just by playing with the motor trim and/or with an anti-ventilation plate.
  • cookin outcookin out Posts: 237 Deckhand
    I took some advise years ago on an older boat and was told to put the widest tabs I could put on......WOW what a difference they was a 22 foot angler and I had 18 inch tabs on each side....
  • Pioneer180Pioneer180 Posts: 124 Deckhand
    Won't ride larger. It just will ride better. I added them 2 weeks ago to my 18' boat and it is just more stable overall. If you think jumping less in some chop is like a bigger boat then maybe you can say it rides larger. But I think not like 3' larger.
  • rehartlinerehartline Posts: 794 Officer
    I put Lenco's on my 18.5 ft bay boat and swear by them. Well worth the investment.
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