New to salt water

Discussion in 'Newbie Lounge - NEW' started by TexasBryan, Oct 12, 2017.

  1. TexasBryan

    TexasBryan Member

    Oct 12, 2017
    College Station, TX
    2001 Sedan Bridge 400
    Cummins 6CTA 8.3
    We currently live a couple hours from the Texas gulf coast and we are currently considering purchasing our first salt-water boat.

    We hope to use the boat as a weekend destination and for day-trips in order to gain more knowledge and experience so that we might consider more extensive boat journeys in our retirement years.

    We have a lifetime of experience on freshwater lakes, including several Sea Ray's, but minimal experience with salt water.

    We welcome your thoughts and recommendations as to minimum/maximum boat size and layout for an entry-level into salt-water boating and marina life on the gulf coast.

    Thank you!
  2. northern

    northern Well-Known Member

    Jan 17, 2007
    West coast Vancouver to Alaska
    380 Aft Cabin 1989 GPS and Charts by Nobeltec
    Twin 454 strait shaft
    The main difference between salt water and fresh water is you get bigger waves on salt water and you can not drink the water. Motor wise a closed cooling system does not see salt water except for the exhaust system that needs to be serviced about every 5 years.
  3. fwebster

    fwebster Well-Known Member TECHNICAL Contributor PLATINUM Sponsor

    Oct 6, 2006
    Middle Tennessee ; Panama City Beach, FL
    1996 450DA
    3116 Caterpillars
    If you plan to leave the boat in saltwater, don't even consider a boat with i/o power; v-drives or inboards are a must. If you can store the boat on a lift or in a dry stack facility, then any boat will let you get on the water and learn the difference between coastal and lake boating.

    Keeping the boat in a marina, however, opens a lot of doors for you in terms of learning from slip neighbors, meeting new people, and just over all enjoyment of the boat. After being in the marina here for 20+ years, some of my closest friends are folks we met at the marina.

    As far as handling the boat and your overall satisfaction of the coastal boating experience…..and I know this is sort of a cliche…….but buy the biggest boat your pocket book can handle and it will save you lots of money in the long run by skipping over multiple trade-up's. We have a 450DA and it is easier to run and handle than a lot of smaller outdrive boats and it would be difficult for me to be happy with anything smaller for coastal cruising.

    Enjoy the boat search……...

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