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New member,...prospective Bennington owner!

Discussion in 'Midwest U.S.' started by Dewey643, May 12, 2019.

  1. Dewey643

    Dewey643 Member

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    Hello everybody,...name is Dewey,...and I am a new prospective Bennington owner. I toured the factory and I am impressed with the build process. I'm in the very early stages of pontoon ownership. I have picked out the model I believe should fit my budget,....that is always the utmost important thing to me,....that it fits the budget,...don't want to get more than what I need or can afford. Being new to this,I have chosen to go with an 18 ft. pontoon. I'm single,and will be on boat by myself probably 90% of the time anyway,so there's no need for anything bigger! I looked at,...and considered,...16 ft.,.but feel that's too small,...again,18 ft. is plenty big enough! I boat primarily on northern Indiana lakes,and nearby flood control reservoirs. The model I have chosen is the S 188SLV,...their value line model!
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2019
  2. sjhorner9475

    sjhorner9475 Well-Known Member

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    One of the great things about Bennington is they offer a model, floor plan, and size that fits nearly every need out there. You will find members of this forum eager to give advice and guidance. We love to spend other peoples money. Almost all the advice provided on this site is good sound advice, but you do need to remember it is based on the members' experience and their opinion. We all have different goals when purchasing a boat, different ways we use our boats, and boat on different types of water. Read the advice, compare it against your goals of boat ownership and then make the decision that works best for you.

    Congratulations on choosing to become part of the Bennington family.
     
    Dewey643, Vikingstaff and Lay Lake like this.
  3. Lay Lake

    Lay Lake Member

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    Everyone has a budget that they attempt to keep. I would never want you to spend more than your budget allows. I looked on the build site and noticed a couple of things. The slv line has a no haggle price, but if you look at the other lines they are listed with msrp. Don't let this scare you. You should be able to get 20, maybe even close to 30 percent off (depending on the dealer) of the msrp. That brings the s series price really close to the slv series. The advantage of the s or any of the higher series is the array of options to choose from. Again, you should definitely stay within your budget, but just giving you something to think about.

    Congratulations on considering joining the Bennington family!
     
  4. goldnrod24

    goldnrod24 Moderator

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    Welcome. Yeah, you have opened a real can of worms. Next thing you know, we will have tried to talk you into a 28' wide body with twin 425 Yammis with solar powered autopilot/GPS and supercomputer-controlled power steering. :) But hold firm to how you plan to use your boat and your budget. As you will learn, Benningtons have great resale, so when you are ready to buy the one described above (or whatever), someone will be willing to pay a premium for yours!

    Keep us posted!
     
  5. Dewey643

    Dewey643 Member

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    I may have another look at that,...I may have missed that,and may do another boat build in that S series just to have another pontoon to consider,but still stay within budget!
     
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  6. Bronco

    Bronco Active Member

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    Congrats and welcome, Dewey. Plus one on the s line. With discounts you can get a more optioned boat, if that's what you are looking for.

    My 2 cents is that on my 22ssbxp 2 pricey options that aren't sexy proved to be some of the best money that I spent : center toon storage and a keeper rail for the swing back seating so that it usable seating even underway.As I said, they weren't cheap but they are in constant use every time we go out. You can never have enough storage and maximize your layout for more seating no matter what size boat you decide to get, IMHO only. Everyone uses their boats differently but for our family these turned out to be well targeted spends.

    Though you noted that you will be the only one going out 90% of the time, that can change over the time of ownership and extra storage and seating can extend your ownership life. And, if you do decide that you want to sell it, those options (frankly, lots of other options, too) can support resale price

    One other thing to know with the s line is that some options come standard (for example, extended fore and aft decks were included), thus, any discount of the boat price that you get flows through to those features that might otherwise be full price options.

    I'm not advocating exceeding budget, but just to examine all of the packages and to negotiate price. If you can get within budget, great. If you can't you will still be getting a high quality Bennington that you chose for years of enjoyment. It's hard to go wrong with any avenue here.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2019
  7. Dewey643

    Dewey643 Member

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    I done a "build & price" on an S 188SL this afternoon,and going to compare it with the S 188SLV I have had quoted to me.
     
    Vikingstaff likes this.
  8. Dewey643

    Dewey643 Member

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    I mentioned I boat,...or have boated,...on nearby flood control reservoirs,...the main problem with them that I experienced when I had my little 14 ft. utility-V bottom is those reservoirs become rough when the wind kicks up! Not sure how an 18 ft. pontoon would act in those conditions,though. Even small lake chains can get rough if wind kicks up enough. I always watch weather forecasts,...if they predict high winds,I won't go out no matter how large a boat I have!
     
    kaydano and Vikingstaff like this.
  9. SEMPERFI8387

    SEMPERFI8387 Moderator

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    Remember, it’s just you till friends and family find out you got a boat ..... then ... “all aboard” ....
     
    Bronco, lakeliving, Michiman and 3 others like this.
  10. Dewey643

    Dewey643 Member

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    Well,yeah,....that will be true,...especially my friends from church,....I KNOW they will want to go out! Then you have family!
     
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  11. Mike31406

    Mike31406 Well-Known Member

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    Well said.
     
  12. Mike31406

    Mike31406 Well-Known Member

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    You are making a good decision considering Bennington. Some of the best advice I got from this forum was to “buy your last boat first.” Believe me in the long run it is much less expensive that way. I ended up exceeding what I was comfortable in spending by a considerable amount but we are so glad we did. We love our Bennington. It has been used for two seasons now and it still looks/runs like new.
     
  13. Dewey643

    Dewey643 Member

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    I've looked at brands like Sylvan,Qwest,Starcraft,etc. They don't match Bennington's build quality! Just my opinion!
     
  14. Michiman

    Michiman Well-Known Member

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    That's probably a good rule to follow as a pontoon will only marginally handle rough water better, particularly when loaded.
     
    Vikingstaff likes this.
  15. Dewey643

    Dewey643 Member

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    Well,...I completed step 1 towards my goal of owning a Bennington,...paid off a loan yesterday. Step 2 is either selling that stupid motorcycle that I should not have ever bought,or trading both it,and my Ford Escape in for a new 2019 Ford Ranger! Step 3 will involve getting rid of one last credit card bill! Step 4 will involve deciding which pontoon to go with,...S 188SL,...S 188SLV,..or maybe S 168SL. I would prefer 18 ft. though! If I have to wait for 2020 models to come out,...so be it! Hopefully these models I mentioned will still be in their 2020 line up! I'd say as it looks right now,...to make this affordable,...I'll have to go with their value line SLV models! You go with what you can afford...if I have to do a 16 ft. pontoon,...I'll do a 16 ft. pontoon!
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2019 at 9:46 AM
  16. Vikingstaff

    Vikingstaff Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like you have a clear game plan. And heck, better to get on the water, than not do it at all. Best of luck with the game plan falling into place.

    Normally I’d say nothing wrong waiting a year to not rush it and make sure its the best boat at the best price for your budget. Those models will be there without a doubt in 2020 too. Of course, costs creep up each year as well, so when combined with current tariff volatility issues, there might be something to be said for springing for it now instead...?
     
  17. SEMPERFI8387

    SEMPERFI8387 Moderator

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    Being you’ve never had one before, I HIGHLY recommend spending a day on a 16’ and with another person if you think that may be the norm. You might quickly find a 16’ is too small (or maybe not?). We survived 3 years on a 615 (6x12 deck) Gillgetter. We dealt with it that long so we didn’t take a bath on trade. Our 23GCW is 25’ tip to tip. We have to text each other to communicate it’s so big .... :D:D
     
  18. kaydano

    kaydano Well-Known Member

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    As far as passengers goes, church out PDX hosedragger.

    Funny, spell check changed "check' to "church". Seemed appropriate for this discussion, so I left it.

    Listen to Dave. If I was single, no kids, I'd have Dave's boat (Semper). He was limited on hp by local lake rules, but my personal favorite use of our pontoon is slow cruising and anchoring. Which means you'll be fine with a 20 hp. Shift your $ from motor to boat so you can get a nicer boat now. You can always add a bigger motor later, which can cost as much as your boat, when you get married and have kids. Your new Bennington will still be around.

    You never mentioned motor size. You are getting a motor, right?
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2019 at 9:35 PM
  19. Dewey643

    Dewey643 Member

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    If I end up with a 16 ft.,...I may be able to get away with a 30 HP motor,....if I am able to go 18 ft.,...I want at least a 50 HP since 18 ft. rated for 60 HP max. with 23" tubes!
     
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  20. Dewey643

    Dewey643 Member

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    I'll wait a year if I have to,....if that becomes necessary! Good to know these models will also be available for 2020 model year! Will keep up to date as things progress!
     
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