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  1. #1

    Default Raft.....Help Me Decide.....

    Well, the time has come to purchase a raft. It will be used throughout the western United States, for both single and multi-day floats, as well as stillwater use. I am looking at either the StreamTech Salmon Fly (the 14 footer) or the Outcast PAC 1400.

    I first saw the StreamTech boats (Stream Tech Drift Boats- Fishing boats, whitewater rafting boats, Stream Tech, Fly Fishing boats) a few years ago and immediately liked what I saw. I like the looks of the boats, I like the accessories and I think it is one fine boat. From what I have heard, they are very good boats that are well thought out and durable.

    The Outcast boat (Outcast Sporting Gear | Fishing pontoon boat float tube and rafts for serious anglers) I am not so sure about. The boat itself looks nice, but the frame looks chinsy (cheap). However, it is a NRS frame, which I have heard good things about. This boat is a bit narrower and will not carry as much of a load (not a big deal, just a bit more cramped).

    The Outcast boat is quite a bit cheaper than the StreamTech, however the StreamTech price includes things like counter balanced oars, pump, repair kit, etc. I am looking for feedback, both good and bad from those who have experience with either or both boats!

    Thank You!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Wasilla / Skwentna, Alaska
    Posts
    15,518
    Blog Entries
    113

    Default Re: Raft.....Help Me Decide.....

    I have 2 OutCast rafts, the 13' Fish Cat and the 9' Cougar with the quad bladders & toons. Great warranty 5 year, and if you but from a dealer they are great with any problems you may have.

    Plenty of OutCast boats on the rivers here in AK. neither of mine are like the one on the link but they and the oars are good quality, we can be pretty rough on them here. The frames are heavy enough that I can run a 3.3 Merc off the big raft if I want. We do not do any crazy white water just floats for fishing.

    Whatever you buy a dealer is almost a must unless there are none within a reasonable range. I drive 55 miles one way to reach the one here.

    Ard

    Anywhere can be the land of great expectations, broken dreams, or paradise found, it's all up to you.

    Life On The Line - Alaska Fishing with Ard
    Ard's Forum blog, Alaska Outdoors

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  4. #3

    Default Re: Raft.....Help Me Decide.....

    I would definitely like to hear input on this as well. I'm moving to Bozeman next month and shopping for a raft. I've narrowed it down to the same 2 options although I haven't ruled out the Green Drake from Streamtech.

    I'm about 90% leaning towards dropping the coin and getting the Streamtech I just need to check one out in person. Fortunately, Link from Streamtech set me up with another Bozeman resident that is letting me look at his raft when I get out there.

    I would love to hear input from anyone that owns either brand.

    Thanks.

  5. #4

    Default Re: Raft.....Help Me Decide.....

    Obvious question is : do the waters you fish require a raft over a drift boat?
    Because there is nothing like a hard bottom boat.

  6. #5

    Default Re: Raft.....Help Me Decide.....

    Quote Originally Posted by South Holston View Post
    Obvious question is : do the waters you fish require a raft over a drift boat?
    Because there is nothing like a hard bottom boat.
    85% Yes. The majority of the waters I will fish will be Colorado, Idaho, western Montana and Oregon. Some may be better in a hard boat and I agree, I like the creature comforts of a hard boat! Especially when it comes to winter fishing.

    That being said, I'm willing to sacrafice a little to have the convenience of a raft. I'll deal with dry bags and perhaps less storage, to have something I can be a bit rough with, especially on new and less traveled waters.

    ---------- Post added at 07:39 AM ---------- Previous post was at 07:36 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by swampdonkey View Post
    I would definitely like to hear input on this as well. I'm moving to Bozeman next month and shopping for a raft. I've narrowed it down to the same 2 options although I haven't ruled out the Green Drake from Streamtech.

    I'm about 90% leaning towards dropping the coin and getting the Streamtech I just need to check one out in person. Fortunately, Link from Streamtech set me up with another Bozeman resident that is letting me look at his raft when I get out there.

    I would love to hear input from anyone that owns either brand.

    Thanks.
    My major issue with the two is cost difference. I have the ability to pick up the Outcast at a very good price. When its all said and done, the Outcast would be roughly half of the price of the StreamTech (especially if you start throwing dry boxes in there). If the two boats are that close, there is no way I'm paying double.

    With that said, that StreamTech looks bad ass and everyone that I know that has been in one has raved about it. Plenty of storage, comfortable, easy to handle, etc. If the prices were close, it would be a very difficult decision.

  7. #6

    Default Re: Raft.....Help Me Decide.....

    I hear you on the price. That was my hang up as well but like you I've heard really only excellent reviews on the Streamtech. I normally lean towards the frugal side but I plan to basically live out of this thing during the summer and fall so think I'm going to spend the money and get what I really want....or I think I want.

    I've also found over the years the gear I've paid a premium for has far outlived the cheaper options. I'm not saying the Outcast is a lesser equivalent as I don't have any experience with them but mostly basing my logic off lots of reviews. It would be nice to hear from any owners that think the Outcast is all one needs.

    I've read hours worth of opinions on rafting forums and the only complaint I've hear about the Streamtech is the price tag.

  8. #7

    Default Re: Raft.....Help Me Decide.....

    Quote Originally Posted by swampdonkey View Post
    I hear you on the price. That was my hang up as well but like you I've heard really only excellent reviews on the Streamtech. I normally lean towards the frugal side but I plan to basically live out of this thing during the summer and fall so think I'm going to spend the money and get what I really want....or I think I want.

    I've also found over the years the gear I've paid a premium for has far outlived the cheaper options. I'm not saying the Outcast is a lesser equivalent as I don't have any experience with them but mostly basing my logic off lots of reviews. It would be nice to hear from any owners that think the Outcast is all one needs.

    I've read hours worth of opinions on rafting forums and the only complaint I've hear about the Streamtech is the price tag.


    I'm right there with you in buying quality the first time. All of my fishing and hunting gear is top of the line (Loomis, Hatch, Renzetti, Browning, PSE, Sig Sauer, etc.) and it performs and lasts. If I'm spending the coin on something, I more than take care of it and usually baby it!

    I think I mentioned it in the first post and I am sure you are aware of it, but the StreamTech packages also come with the pump, repair kit, counter balanced oars and some other things. If I go the StreamTech route, I'll be getting everything from him, including trailer, boxes, etc.

  9. #8

    Default Re: Raft.....Help Me Decide.....

    Yeah same here. I debated just getting the raft but I'm gonna buy the whole package if I pull the trigger. I know lots of guys build their own frames and customize them how they want to save some money. However, I'm to excited to be living out West to spend all summer building or outfitting. I want to start chucking flies.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Wasilla / Skwentna, Alaska
    Posts
    15,518
    Blog Entries
    113

    Default Re: Raft.....Help Me Decide.....

    As you probably got from my first post, I can only comment on the Out Cast rafts. They have been working for me through 6 years now without any complaints. There was a leak in a bladder on the big one but AK. Raft & Kayak replaced the bladder & valve no messing around.

    I can't stress it enough, get something that will have a dealer capable of service within a reasonable drive. These are great until there is a problem, that's when you really don't want to be dealing with an 888 phone number.

    Also, I take my rafts down at seasons end. I store the deflated hulls and bladders flat in the loft of our heated garage. I don't roll them up for storage, I did that the year that I had the leaky tube............... Not sure it really helps but I clean them up, deflate, and store for the winters and they are like new every spring.

    One other thing, I know we want small rafts for transport purposes but that 13' job of mine makes a great one man raft. They come with 2 seats but I pulled it and put an extra cargo deck where the seat was. On a long float it's better to have plenty of room. I also notice the larger boat being much easier to handle in heavy water conditions than the little one. Sitting up on the pedestal seat helps out a lot. If you get anything with pedestal seat for the rower, I put a swivel on mine and love it.

    Ard

    Anywhere can be the land of great expectations, broken dreams, or paradise found, it's all up to you.

    Life On The Line - Alaska Fishing with Ard
    Ard's Forum blog, Alaska Outdoors

  11. Default Re: Raft.....Help Me Decide.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Hardyreels View Post
    As you probably got from my first post, I can only comment on the Out Cast rafts. They have been working for me through 6 years now without any complaints. There was a leak in a bladder on the big one but AK. Raft & Kayak replaced the bladder & valve no messing around.

    I can't stress it enough, get something that will have a dealer capable of service within a reasonable drive. These are great until there is a problem, that's when you really don't want to be dealing with an 888 phone number.

    Also, I take my rafts down at seasons end. I store the deflated hulls and bladders flat in the loft of our heated garage. I don't roll them up for storage, I did that the year that I had the leaky tube............... Not sure it really helps but I clean them up, deflate, and store for the winters and they are like new every spring.

    One other thing, I know we want small rafts for transport purposes but that 13' job of mine makes a great one man raft. They come with 2 seats but I pulled it and put an extra cargo deck where the seat was. On a long float it's better to have plenty of room. I also notice the larger boat being much easier to handle in heavy water conditions than the little one. Sitting up on the pedestal seat helps out a lot. If you get anything with pedestal seat for the rower, I put a swivel on mine and love it.

    Ard
    For me, service will be non-existant. I live in Phoenix, Arizona and I will be traveling a lot to fish since the fishing is soooo stellar here!

    As for storage, I plan on keeping the boat inflated all year and stored on a trailer specific to that boat. Once this thing goes together, I do not anticipate taking it down.

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