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How "Ocean Worthy" is a SS 188 OB?

This question was posted on the Hull Truth boating forum with mostly non Hurricane owners replying.  Many of the replies were that deck boats should not be taken into the ocean because of their shallow dead-rise (some said you need at least 20 degrees).  I'd like to get some experienced Hurricane owner's take on it.  I know this is a relative question because in my younger, and crazier days, I've taken a 10ft. jon boat out.  So my question is... what should the conditions be to "safely" and "comfortably" take a SS 188 OB out an inlet (like Ponce Inlet, FL) to cruise or fish close to shore?    


  • trubedortrubedor Member Posts: 10 ✭✭
    Ok..I have the 203 wihich is about 2 feet longer.  How Ocean Worthy you ask?  Well...I wouldn;t take mine out more then some inshore fishing unless seas were dead calm.  20 feet is kind of as small as you want to get with those low gunwales, seas over 2 feet can give you some issues especially with waves cross breaking.  I run my 203 out of Manasquan Inlet and stay within 1 mile of shore and unless dead calm (<2 feet) , I get a good rocking and get really nervous.  You really need a different kind of hull (deeper V) and vessel if you want to go anywhere offshore and feel safe I would think.  These boats look big on land, but out there you're a little cork...My advice.  If offshore fishing (or even near shore fishing) is your bag, go for a bigger, more substantial model (24+ feet) with a deep v hull.  Oh yeah...and make sure you have all the safety equipment you're supposed to have, plus a good marine'll be surprised how quickly you'll become alone out there.  Happy fishing!
  • EpavukEpavuk Member Posts: 26
    Thanks, trubedor!  Great advice.    
  • cjjjdeckcjjjdeck Northern NJMember, Moderator Posts: 1,386 ✭✭✭✭
    Gee Epavuk, there are a ton of FL based Hurricane owners, I would have expected more responses to your post.
    2012 SD237 I/O Mercruiser 5.0L MPI ECT/ Bravo 3
    2012 Load Rite Elite Tandem axle trailer

  • RDeanRDean Member Posts: 4
    I ran my SD187 a few miles out from Crystal River and also offshore from Clearwater up to Honeymoon Island. Only in the gulf and on calm mornings. The day we went out to Honeymoon started out glassy but the end of the day ended up choppy. It never made me nervous but was an uncomfortable ride back. The Intracoastal and Gulf were equally rough that day, sometimes the Intracoastal is worse from wakes. I would not feel comfortable being out of sight of land or not being able to be back inshore within about 20 minutes of conditions starting to change. If you are paying attention it should be perfectly safe, just be ready to come in ahead of the summertime storms.
  • 1pointofview1pointofview Member Posts: 74 ✭✭
    The whole reason I purchased my ss188 last year was 2 fold.  I wanted a solid boat that had enough room for 2 families that we could putt around in and pull some people on the water.  2nd was I wanted something safe on the water during weather and such. 

    I was in Fort Walton Fl when I came across the ss188 after I was looking at some pontoons and the salesman asked me if I would like to try it out.  we sea trialed it during high winds and what looked like really stinkin big white capping waves.  We took the boat just past the breakers and turned around just to get a feel for how well it held up.  we were not going fast at all. I would say just a few miles an hour if that just riding the waves.  After the sea trial in realllllyyy rough conditions I felt it would be an safe bet with 99% of my inland lake needs.

    My salesman said during calm days, he takes people out into the gulf but does not go out further than 1 mile.  

    Long story short, if you are skilled and experienced you could get away with hitting the open water but It would have to be super calm before I take my family in my 188 out of the bay of Destin/Ft Walton.  But that is just me..
    2013 Hurricane SS188
    115 Yam
    Magic Tilt Trailer
    Hotty Toddy
  • darrenwncdarrenwnc Member Posts: 1
    I've only been a boat owner for a couple years (2010 SS 201 I/O) and primarily use it for inland entertainment.  Last year, my wife and I got a hair and took it out to the intercostal off NC and let me tell you it was a humbling experience.  I thought I did my research (on this and other forums along with discussions with local marine folks) and throught I had a fairly decent handle on what to expect, but I was dead wrong.  We hit the IC with about 2-3ft chop and like trubedor mentioned above, it was like being a cork.    We continuously got alot of wash over the low gunwales which made my wife and I more and more nervouse as the day progressed.  I've been in Deep V's in the IC and deeper and would recommend those over a Deck anyday.  First time and last time for us with our deck which is kind of depressing becasue I was really looking forward to expanding my fishing hole "black book".
    2010 SS 201 I/O
    Mercury 4.3TKS
  • cjjjdeckcjjjdeck Northern NJMember, Moderator Posts: 1,386 ✭✭✭✭
    Hurricane boats have a hull classification of Category 5.  Here's the Range of Service designation as described in the boat building industry:

    Category 5 hull “Range of Service” designation
    “Trips on inland waterways and lakes.  Also included are day trips off the coastline, confined to shallows and/or sea areas located at a distance not exceeding 0.75 nautical miles, measured from the shore and/or the main land”

    Two other factors that affect performance in rougher waters is length and weight.  The "four digit" Hurricane models have a different deadrise angle than the "three digit" models (16 degree verses 12.5 degree in most instances).  Higher angle deadrise contributes to smoother performance in rougher water.  Most V-hulls have a 20 degree or higher deadrise for comparison.  So, for example, a 23 foot "three digit" model will perform better in rougher water than a 19 foot "three digit" model will due to increased length and weight.  The "four digit" models will perform better in rougher waters than the "three digit" models due to their higher deadrise angle. 

    Regardless of the performance improvement of one model over the other, Hurricane boats are not designed for use in open and deep ocean.  Stick to inland water and protected bays.
    2012 SD237 I/O Mercruiser 5.0L MPI ECT/ Bravo 3
    2012 Load Rite Elite Tandem axle trailer

  • aaa1950aaa1950 Member Posts: 19
    Great information! I have been wondering about this situation as well. I have only been in the NC ICW and Bogue Inlet area once with my SDS 188 OB and I felt a little uncomfortable with the water conditions.  
  • mlmeadormlmeador Member Posts: 12
    Looks like this one has been answered but one additional consideration. On my 2008 FunDeck 238 REF, the batteries are not protected by a watertight hatch (perhaps this has been installed on more recent models).  If you get a lot of water on deck, it could also knock out your power....Marty
    I have a 188 outboard and live in Clearwater Florida. The boat will hold up to any other 20 foot boats is rough waves. If you are going offshore you need to be experienced boat will hold up 100 percent. The problem with the 188 is that it does not handle heavy waves smoothly. I added trim tabs to my boat and it made a huge difference.
  • skidtrashskidtrash Member Posts: 60 ✭✭
    I have a 187OB and anything over 2 feet out the inlet is pretty much idle speed no faster..... down here in Palm Beach its often less than 2ft off shore so we can spend a lot of time out side

  • psfrizzpsfrizz Member Posts: 11

    I live in Florida with a 188 OB, I don't take it on the ocean, I have taken it to the Keys though, its much calmer there for the boat, especially on the Gulf side.

  • cjjjdeckcjjjdeck Northern NJMember, Moderator Posts: 1,386 ✭✭✭✭

    A friend of mine was travelling through the Keys with his motorhome last year and told me he saw Hurricane boats everywhere he went down there.  They must be popular down there.

    2012 SD237 I/O Mercruiser 5.0L MPI ECT/ Bravo 3
    2012 Load Rite Elite Tandem axle trailer

  • njm130njm130 Orange Beach, ALMember Posts: 10
    I just bought a SS 231 for the versatility of me wanting to fish inshore saltwater and fresh water lakes and my wife wanting a pontoon for party/entertaining.  I'm moving from a 23' deep V center console (2007 Pro Line 23 Sport) and I can tell you this, do not expect it to ride like a deep V.  It is a completely different animal.  We feel all chop and boat wakes due to the 12.5 dead rise over the 21 dead rise of the deep V.  This boat is not designed to take a beating and we slow waaaay down for 1 ft seas/wakes in the bay.  The console and T-top are not secured enough for rough water, but calm seas and it handles like a dream... turns on a dime too.

    That said, we love it!  We can nose in to shallow water and walk right off the bow to the beach instead of anchoring off shore and wading in.  It is great in skinny water with a 14" draft so we can scoot all the way in on sand bars, coast lines, fishing back bays, etc.  It has a low profile and therefore low sail (wind pushing boat) so is easier to maneuver with one engine than my CC.  Also, you get the room of a 26-28' CC in a 23' boat.  

    Just have to choose your poison.
    2014 SS 231 w/Yamaha 200 

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