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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Can anyone tell my how the Dolphin Super Skiff 16 and the Hells Bay Biscayne compare with regard to ride?

They seem to both handle rougher conditions well for 16’ boats. Does anyone with experience on these two boats have any input on the differences?

I am already aware of the difference in price.
 

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I’ve been in both and owned two super skiffs. Biscayne will ride better and feel much bigger. The super skiff is a smaller narrower boat at the water line. If you want a boat for rougher conditions look at a Marquesa. But how and where do you want to fish? Pole, anchor up? I used to take a lot of water over the bow on my super skiff when staked out waiting for tarpon. But I’m a little heavier than most 230.
 

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I got a chance to ride around on an Super Skiff in a variety of conditions and I have a lot of respect for that boat!
 

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Never been on a Super Skiff, but have spent a lot of time on my buddy's Biscayne. He had a 16' Mitzi prior, and the Biscayne feels MUCH larger than the Mitzi (which I know is not a good comparison with the Super Skiff). Biscayne is not as easy to pole as the Mitzi or as my SM 1656, but it still is great to pole and handles bigger water.
 

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I previously owned a super skiff and currently own a 2005 biscayne. The dolphin rides better in chop, but not by much. The biscayne is by far a better skiff for ocean side tarpon. The dolphin was constantly taking water over the bow while on the hook. the biscayne doesn’t take waves over the bow nearly as much. Both skiffs pole very well and are very maneuverable. The biscayne poles a couple inches shallower than the dolphin. The biscayne does feel like more boat on account of the 16’4” length vs the 15’10” length of the dolphin, but it is more visual than functional. Plenty of space on the broad front deck design of the dolphin. Can’t go wrong with either skiff and in fact I would love to find a budget dolphin super skiff and keep it in the keys year round.
 

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I own a 2005 Biscayne as well. I do know that the Biscayne hull underwent some modifications in 2012 which included a slightly deeper V, bigger spray rails and different hatch design where they open towards the stern instead of to the sides. I do believe that the post 2012 Biscayne rides better than a Super Skiff. My 05 can get pretty wet on a decent chop between 60 and 90 degrees. Regardless of the year Biscayne, I think it takes waves better on the hook than a Super Skiff. I’ve only taken one or two over the bow and it wasn’t even much water. I don’t think you can go wrong with either but if you’re going to be fishing Oceanside conditions then I would lean towards the Biscayne because the two likely pole pretty similar but the Biscayne can handle the seas better. My Biscayne is easy to spin on the pole and drafts about 7” with a Yamaha F70.

In short, if you want a better ride than a Super Skiff then get a Biscayne made in 2012 or later. Otherwise I would bet the Super Skiff and earlier Biscayne ride pretty similar in a chop, maybe even giving the nod to the Super Skiff.
 

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You really need to tell guys what your planned predominate use is going to be. Your question is just too broad. Most of the feedback you have gotten is good but it mostly talking about tarpon fishing and being on the hook and if that, for example, is your predominant fishing then there are better boats out there than either of those.
 

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Another question for those that have experience with both, which boat is drier in a cross or side chop? My Super Skiff is dry in a head on chop, but has plenty of spray otherwise depending on wind direction. Also, the bow does go under a lot when Tarpon fishing on the ocean.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
You really need to tell guys what your planned predominate use is going to be. Your question is just too broad. Most of the feedback you have gotten is good but it mostly talking about tarpon fishing and being on the hook and if that, for example, is your predominant fishing then there are better boats out there than either of those.
I would be using this skiff in New England to chase stripers. There are a few guys that do really well in Action Crafts/Sportsman but I like the idea of being able to pole the boat. This year I picked up an L4 Expedition and have been finding a ton of fish. We have 8-12' tides so most guys talk about how a shallow boat is not important, but I believe, and have confirmed with some guys, that a shallow boat can get me on flats earlier and posted up waiting for fish and they come in with the flood.

If you look at Cape Cod Bay you can see that a S wind in the morning can turn ugly quickly as soon as it turns W or N. I would like to be able to get back to the ramp once the wind shifts.
 

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Go bigger than a Super Skiff or Biscayne. I have a Marquesa at the moment. And the boats your talking about are ok in rough water but very limiting. Three people is crowded on either boat and the Super skiff will occasionally stuff the bow in a following sea of any size. If most of the guys are running Action Crafts in your area there’s a reason for it. If it were me I’d get a bigger skiff and mother ship a kayak or SUP (inflatable if you want it out of the way) if you want to go really shallow.
 

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for what is described - an egret my be the best thing out there - there is nothing more seaworthy or better in the slop - either 16 or 18. I've fished a new biscayne for a week - it is a super boat - the big bulbous front allows it to work really well on anchor and not bury the bow on a following sea - but there is no magic bullet - you need to choose your priorities. It was once described to me and I agree - choose the best boat for what you will do 90% of the time.
 

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I also agree - get an 18 footer unless there is a reason you cannot - doesn't seem like you will be poling all day long
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I've gone around in circles thinking about it and bounced from one skiff to another. I spend a good amount of time thinking about the SS and Action Craft. The Biscayne and Egret seem like the nicer options.

I can put a 16' skiff in my garage. For anything bigger I will end up extending my driveway and expanding the fenced in portion of my yard.

Long term with a young family the bigger boat might be the way to go.
 

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So Ive been on both and spent 4 years at MMA in Buzzards Bay so have a fair amount of experience with that fishery. Like others have said Id look at a marquesa. Still going to draft around 12in with a load and 2-3 people on board. Handle the big water fine and still pole better than an egret or hewes or old maverick.

Hard to beat the added couple feet of length in that chop and it has a much bigger feel than either of the boats you mentioned without sacrificing a ton of pole-ability
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
So Ive been on both and spent 4 years at MMA in Buzzards Bay so have a fair amount of experience with that fishery. Like others have said Id look at a marquesa. Still going to draft around 12in with a load and 2-3 people on board. Handle the big water fine and still pole better than an egret or hewes or old maverick.

Hard to beat the added couple feet of length in that chop and it has a much bigger feel than either of the boats you mentioned without sacrificing a ton of pole-ability
One of the guides in ACK just picked up a Marquesa. The drone footage posted on IG looked good.
 

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If the area you fish really gets nasty quickly at times and you want to be safe – a true self bailing 189 egret is in a class of its own- and I doubt almost anyone on this site would argue that
 
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