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Author Topic: Need your opinions on a new boat line  (Read 4143 times)

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robtheboatman

Need your opinions on a new boat line
« on: August 09, 2012, 11:30:09 AM »

We are looking at taking on a new line of boats, and I wanted to get your opinions on the Phoenix brand of boats.  I got a chance to take one out, and it was pretty impressive. I have seen a few on Lake St Clair, but wanted to get the fishing publics point of view on the brand.  Any input would be appreciated.

Thanks
Rob
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VinceR

Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2012, 04:13:15 PM »

Rob, I"ve seen a couple of Phoenix boats on St. Clair. Nice looking boat. Thing is, it is very similar in design (hull) to Stratos and Triton as the designers and engineers were associated with both of those companies at one time or the other.

From what I can tell, most of the innovation is in the interior layout. Not sure if that will be enough to draw a significant number of anglers from the known "favorites".

As you are well aware, Michigan anglers tend to be fiercely loyal to the faves.  Seems that the new builders have a hard time getting a foothold in this area (even some of the older established brands). Plus, it's ties to BeeLine (formerly Bumble Bee) may not help, as they have not sold well, here.

What will help is if it proves to have an "amazing" (read, dry and smooth) on the "big water", and is a stable fishing platform on the same water. Boat construction and customer service (at the factory level) will need to prove themselves, too. Even then, you have get them out there so that the anglers can see (and feel) for themselves.

Just my humble opinion.     
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bob o

Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #2 on: August 09, 2012, 08:29:59 PM »

as you proably already know Basscat purchased Yar Craft boats and now manufactures a complete line of bass and mulit-spieces boats. the walleye boats would be a big draw to the musky, walleye, pike and perch jerkers as well as having a full line of the best backed bass boats made. check them out i don't know of any other basscat dealer in michigan but i see lots of them on LSC every time i head that way
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mikesmiph

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Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #3 on: August 09, 2012, 08:36:00 PM »

When I was shopping boats for 2 years, (before it became financially impossible for the time being) Phoenix was #2 on my list. I really like the layout of their boats. I never did get a chance to ride in one. I would hold judgement until I could get out in one on St Clair in semi-rough water. Personally, I think there is plenty of room for a newcomer in the area. Not everyone is hooked on the old standards.
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LennyB

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Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #4 on: August 09, 2012, 09:01:30 PM »

Being from SE Michigan and primarily fishing Lake St. Clair, Erie, and the local inland lakes, I would be looking at Ranger, Triton, Basscat, and maybe the Stratos Elite series with the Champion hull for the big water as a consumer. As far as selling them as a retailer, I would not carry Ranger or Stratos because Cabela's and Wonderland already do and you be in direct competition with your neighbors. Tritons are available at D & R in Kalamazoo which is pretty far for an East sider to drive for service, so I would consider them. They have a very good product at a very competitive price. I'm not sure who sells Basscat but I don't think anyone close does. I've never seen or heard of a Phoenix dealer in this area which may be a plus to carring them as long as they have good marketing as well as a good product. I'm not sure how they will stack up against the brands mentioned above. My first choice would be Basscat to sell based on there marketing, quality, reputation and lack of local dealers selling them. My second choice would be Triton for the same reasons. The Phoenix lines reputation would have to be built in this area and could be an up hill battle. Just my 2cents  
« Last Edit: August 09, 2012, 09:06:07 PM by MBFT »
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fish hound

Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #5 on: August 09, 2012, 09:28:57 PM »

I looked at one at the show a year ago, and didn't like the way the glass under the decks wasn't "finished".  It' raw shards of glass, any wiring not in a rigging tube would chafe pretty bad.  Having said that, the one I've seen in a tx looked like it was pretty fast w/ 250 SHO.
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Mike S.

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Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2012, 04:30:07 AM »

I looked at the 2 of them that were at the Grand Rapids fishing show this year. Wasn't impressed in the least bit. Not saying it isn't a good boat, just wouldn't ever consider one. The front decks were very narrow. It reminded me of my old Nitro. I would try to pick up a known brand here, one that has a known reputation.

There is a Bass Cat/Legend dealer here on the west side, but those would be good ones to look into. I spent an entire day fishing with the Legend rep from the area, and he asked me if I knew of any other dealers who might carry their line. Unfortunately for Muskegon, all we have is a Lund dealer. I have the Legend rep's number if you want to talk to him. PM me if so. It's getting to the point where every 20 footer on the market is 50 grand, so price shouldn't be an issue.
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Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2012, 07:50:36 AM »

Lake Drive Marine in Coldwater carries Phoenix in their showroom.  Give Jeff a call over there.

Camp and Cruise in Marne carries Bass Cat and Legend, though I don't beleive they have a Cat in stock at this time.
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Manxfishing

Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #8 on: August 10, 2012, 06:50:30 PM »

Rob,

I'd be interested in were do you think that the Phoenix brand fits in with price point and quality?




« Last Edit: August 12, 2012, 07:39:13 AM by Manxfishing »
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Bender

Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #9 on: August 10, 2012, 08:08:53 PM »

I looked at several of their boats at the Classic a couple years ago and they were impressive. I'm curious as to their price on the 618 because there are a lot of Stratos 285's out there but they replaced that boat with the VLO which is more expensive but looks like they made it a lot cheaper. I'm sure you would sell some 921s and 721s, but the 18' market should be a little more open.
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Roy Randolph

Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #10 on: August 12, 2012, 12:18:08 AM »

Rob,

You know me and what brand I hold dear to my hart

But with that said I did look at a couple at the shows as well as photos of others

1st and foremost I noticed is the compartment on the passenger side as part of the passenger rod ramp. (They call it the “PASSENGER ROD BOX”) This was my biggest issue! My brand had the same design years ago and ended up either repairing or replacing a lot of caps due to the fact that this compartment couldn’t hold up to the stress we place on these boats and would have large cracks in the corners of the compartment walls next to the seat and at the passenger’s feet. (Mine at the time was repaired twice) Maybe Phoenix increased the support there but it didn’t appear that way on the one I looked at.

What I did like was the deck layout, I never could understand why manufacturers think we would prefer to use a rod locker to put tackle in.

Dash is simple with plenty of room for large electronics including space for a ram mount

I like seeing the metal fenders on the trailer I won’t own one with glass fenders that cost an arm and leg to fix/replace when too many co-anglers don’t know or care how they drive a rig.

Dimensions are nice, on the 921 but think any boat 20’ or larger should carry more than 50 gallons of gas.

Last but not least warranty and service is just as important if not more important than anything else and I would spend a good portion of your research on this subject and see what reputation they have. You’re putting your reputation on the line here!

All in All a nice platform but it comes down to price, if its priced up there with the major brands you’re not going to get many people to take the leap.

You and I both know unless Texas falls in to the ocean I’m a very unlikely sale but I hope this helps.
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LAPORTE

Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #11 on: August 12, 2012, 08:32:16 PM »

Skeeter ....??
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robtheboatman

Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #12 on: August 13, 2012, 10:56:49 AM »

Rob,

I'd be interested in were do you think that the Phoenix brand fits in with price point and quality?






The reasons that I believed they would be a good fit in our market would be price, quality, and layout design.  They price out quite a bit less than the Ranger, and just a bit more than the Nitro.  I am looking at the team running the company, and they are all from the Stratos/Champion mix that everyone seemed to like, of the late 90's until  the Ranger take over.  They are also one of the only companies that is growing (I understand they had no where to go but up), but as they grow and get more money, I would think that would translate into newer/better ideas and products.  I had a chance to see one that had been ran on St Clair for almost 2 seasons, and was really impressed with how well it has held up.  I have only driven the boat on calm water, but a few different owners have have given me a lot of feedback, and they were more than satisfied with the ride of the boat.  Gary Clouse (the president) is a big tournament guy, and I fell in love with the way he layed out the 921 series boat.  Most everything that you would normally have to order, comes standard on the boat, and from a rigging/service/parts standpoint, that is a big bonus.  So far in my dealings with the company, I have found that personal touch that you lose with some of the bigger corporations.  The Pierce family gives that feeling to their customers and that is why you see the Basscat guys on here being so loyal to them.  Those are a few of my thoughts, feel free to call or email me if you want to discuss any of them further.

Thanks for the input

Rob 
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River Rat

Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #13 on: August 17, 2012, 09:28:57 AM »

Rob,

If you want to take a look at my Legend Alpha 211, just let me know, I'll hook it up and bring it by.

Scott
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Mike S.

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Re: Need your opinions on a new boat line
« Reply #14 on: August 18, 2012, 08:01:17 PM »

Hey Scott, empty your message box so people can send you messages. I tried, but it is full.
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