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All boats have some problems. Nothing can be perfect all the time with current and weather as well. Our boats where i live never did deep drop trips so i am sure it can be a nitemare with 80+ peeps in 500ft +. The boat i worked on and fished on since 1979 limits the amount of people to 30 on the 34 hour trips and 50 on the 12 hour trips. It may cost more but who wants to fish long trips with 80+ peeps? As for heads being up front, we had party boat that the heads would spit at you in rough weather.
 

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Are you willing to pay more? Limited load fixes all of your concerns.

My two grips complaints are people using spinning reels bottom fishing and the electric guys with 5 hooks and a lb of hardware on their line, but I try not to complain too much 馃槀 Its a party boat, people are going to fish how they want to.

@RWC show up an hour early typically really easy to grab 20+ pinfish in half an hour at the dock.
I know my days of party boat fishing are done. This has become a rich mans sport. I am from the old school of keeping everything i get and selling it. Now with limits and closed seasons and cost to go out i pretty much gave it up. No way i would get on any boat with 80 peeps let alone fish with them in 500ft+. I still do work once in a while on the boat i used to work on years ago and we just trade my pay for trips. But for me paying $500 for a 34 hour trip, them days are over for me. Crazy to think a 34 hour trip cost $65 back in the late 80's and sometime you could sell $400 worth of fish. The key to good fishing on any boat is the Capt. Some don't have that extra touch while some just have what it takes to put fish on the decks.

I fished for a living on these boats at times up to two years at a time and it all comes down to the Capt to make money. I know the days of making money are over. I spent over 38 years on all kinds of party boats and seen it all just about. Our boats in my area all run slow now to save fule. I miss the speed days when party boats would fight each other to be the fastest.
 

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There's moments of chaos on any and every party boat you fish, be it east coast, gulf coast and west coast. Ive fished all 3, its the same regardless. It's just part of it and what you're getting into for the low price of getting your saltwater fix. Myself personally, ive learned to avoid the 12 hour party boat trips fishing elbow to elbow.
It still beats buying a boat for sure. My friend wants to get a 100k boat and thinks there is money to be made selling fish under the table. I say he is nuts. With gas prices and sucky fishing we have anyone thinking of such a thing needs to be in a nut house. I hard core fished since i was a kid and just burned out on it. This is not the early 1980's anymore when you get could 200lbs of gags on a 11 hour trip. All the best times of my life were on a party boat. Had some crazy trips back in them days.
 

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I never liked fishing on the newer Florida fisherman they built in 1989. It's a cat that was built too low to the water and 3 ft sea makes it feel like 8 footers. They only run at 7 knts.
 

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We had a boat over here on the west coast of FL back around 1993 thru 95 that was called the Ranger 5 and i was told it came from TX. Not sure if anyone heard of it or not. It was a big V hull with V16's.
 

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It ran out of Galveston for a while... before my time but indeed from Texas.
It was a big boat and we ran two 34 hour trips a week on it. Started out with a bang and had a great Capt that ran it. Would do 17 knts easy. It was a roller and would swing around on spots. But was much better than the Florida Fisherman 2. Owner sold it late 95 and it went to the islands.
 

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It docked at the Yacht Basin for a while. It was originally from back east somewhere. It had heated handrails for winter fishing and aircraft type seats with seatbelts for rough water.
Matt ran it when it first started here in FL. This is not the same Matt in this thread. The owner was nuts and had a great biss going as he cut the price to $60 a trip for a 34 hr trip on the mid week and $75 on the weekends. That sure made the Florida fisherman mad. They had to cut prices to match. Owner got cheap and stopped the free coffee and free steak dinner drawings. He ran off a lot of people and Matt got fed up and left. Got a new Capt and BOOM one of the engines blew before they got out of the pass. I sure made good money fishing on that boat. Galley was up front and it sure ran thru the cooks. Must have had 30 cooks on that boat. I cooked on it for about a year.
 

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Come fish Long Range out of San Diego if you want comfort. They are just unreal. After fishing out of Hubbards in FL its like stepping into a whole new world. I have yet to fish with Capt. Matt and hear some excellent things. Hopefully sometime soon.
Independence Sportfishing, Excel, Intrepid, American Angler, Royal Polaris. Book a year out as they all sell out.
I would like to fish with Matt for kicks if i was ever in TX. Nice to be a on boat that is not scared to run fast.
 

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the good old days are gone, what a shame
Whole diff type of people now vs the 1980's. Our regs all sold fish back in the days. They started all these rules and fish limits in the 90's and none of the boats would enforce them. Then they cracked down on the boats and started giving out heavy fines around the year 2000. They then started to target the places buying fish. Not sure what all went on with the boats out of TX and if people sold fish back in the day. I don't know anything about the bottom or fishing over there. Seems the boats over there fish deeper water. We never fished past 240ft most of the time. One time on the Ranger we tried to fish two wrecks in 270ft and did not have enough scope for the anchor line and would drag everytime we tried to get over them.
 

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Everyone did their damage over the years. I was told how great the fishing was in the mid 60's 30 miles offshore off of Clearwater FL in 100ft. 25 lb red snaps and 25lb red grouper. By the mid 80's the fishing was getting pretty bad for the 11 hour trips 60 to 100 miles offshore.
 

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Sure had some unreal trips over the years. I started about what was the tail end of the good fishing in 1982. It had to be crazy in the middle grounds on them tall peaks back in the 1940's and 50's if anyone even fished that far offshore. You really only needed to go 20 miles offshore back in them days. But it only took us about 30 years to wipe it all out.
 

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Going on a 12 hr trip Sunday. Gonna be one hot SOB , no A/C on this boat. Get my 2 fish limit in 5 mins time for red snaps and pray i can get past the red snaps and get some other kinds of fish.
 

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I did good on the 12 hr trip. Ran out 44 miles to start and 2 nd stop the boat had 60 head of red snaps. I got two 10 lb red snaps in about 10 mins time. Once they stopped biting the mangrove snaps were taking small live pinfish and i ended up with 7 Mangos from 3 to 7 lbs. I had one gag that was a tiny bit short. Just sad news all around for gags the last few years.
 
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