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What's your opinion on outboard jet motors? I've read they're very loud and hard on fuel BUT they can go on small, shallow rivers.
I'm looking for the most versatile boat I can get, one that I'd like to use on the St. John River below Fred'n 20% of the time, headpond 10% of the time, small lakes (Harvey, Spednic, etc.) 50% of the time, Miramichi River for spring salmon 10% and duck hunting 10% of the time. Thinking of a 16-18 foot Jon Boat with side consoled and 40-75HP motor...
What would you get?
 

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IMO, I wouldn't buy a jet unless the main use was in water less than 3 feet, and in that case i would buy a smaller boat ie 14-36.

I have a 16-48 jon with a 30 HP prop. If you know the area, just get up on plane, you will draw less water anyway.
 

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when our group got picked to go fish the restigouche a few years back.. when we arrived at the put in spot for three sisters.. the group coming out had a jet outboard motor on their canoe.. let me tell you it was f***ing loud!!! not the motor but the noise from the suction of the jet pump.. ya it was loud, won't ever forget that.. fish gotta be spooked?!
 

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A 40 HP JET IS ACTUALLY A 60 HP MOTOR WITH A DIFFERENT BOTTOM END. THEY ARE NOISY AND HARD ON FUEL (ECONOMY OF A 60HP WITH SPEED AND POWER OF A 40HP), BUT GREAT IN SHALLOW WATER.
 

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I have two boats, one with a 45HP Mercury Jet and one with a 225Etec. The jet is a bit noisier than a conventional outboard but I don't find it unreasonably so. The negatives for the jet are that it will bog down in weeds and it is harder on fuel than the same horsepower outboard. Not so great on big bodies of water but wonderful on all of our smaller lakes.
The positives, in my mind, far out weigh these few points. The jet allows you to explore the lakes with a lot less fear of taking off a lower unit. As you know there are no hydrographic charts for our lakes and the jet is a lot more forgiving if you make a mistake. I picked mine up at Phil;s in 2001 and it is still going strong. I have been in a lot of local lakes that I would never have explored with a conventional outboard. So, there is a somewhat higher fuel cost but a lot more leeway in where you run and it makes it a lot more fun to explore new lakes.

Rick
 

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I would recommend you max out the hp on the jet drive. Just keep in mind that it takes way more power and gas to achieve the same speeds as a normal propeller driven unit. They are expensive and sometimes it might be easier and cost effective to look into a older unit that can take a beating.

Henry Nguyen,

Legend Boats
 
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