Crestliner 1750 Bass Hawk Review

The 2017 1750 Crestliner Bass Hawk is an all new model that bass anglers have got to know about.


This article originally appeared on boats.com. Reprinted by permission.


We have a pretty healthy selection of Crestliner fishing boat reviews on boats.com, but most of them share one thing in common: they’re multi-species boats, designed for general fishing as opposed to being focused in on any one species or style of fishing. Crestliner does, of course, have pure bass boats in their PT and VT lines. What would happen if you took a bass boat and melded it with the multi-species Hawk line? The 2017 1750 Bass Hawk is your answer. Join us for an in-depth look at this all new model, in this video boat review.

One of the important things about this boat which we weren’t able to examine in detail during the video review is construction. It’s important to know that Crestliner uses a four-piece hull design with formed-in strakes in the aluminum hull and an extruded, full-length keel. The seams are all welded, and feature a tongue-and-groove interlocking system. Gunwales are also extruded aluminum, and have the SureMount mounting system designed in. Decking is aluminum, and the boat is wood-free. The transom gets double-welded and reinforced. Crestliner backs up this construction method with a limited lifetime warranty on all main-seam welds, and a three-year bow-to-stern warranty.

Blasting across the lake at speeds in excess of 50 MPH, the Bass Hawk felt plenty solid underfoot.
Blasting across the lake at speeds in excess of 50 MPH, the Bass Hawk felt plenty solid underfoot.

Another thing many people don’t realize is just how long Crestliner has been building boats, and just how much experience they have at it. Their history goes all the way back to 1946. You can see it the knowledge that comes with this sort of experience in details like that rod box we liked so much. Not only does it lock, have tubes to protect the rod tips, and have oodles of capacity, it also has a pair of gas-assist struts that hold the hatch up. Notice the use of nylock locking nuts, of their attachment points. And notice the hinges, which run the full length of the hatch.

Another place experience shines is at the helm station. Many small aluminum boats like this one don’t plan ahead for an electronics installation, and a chartplotter/fishfinder has to be binnacle-mounted. But Crestliner dedicated a flat in the center of the helm, so you can have flush-mounted electronics. Same goes for the foresight shown in including the electronics flat at the bow, something serious bassers demand.

How many 17-foot aluminum fishing boats have flush-mounted electronics at the helm? Not many.
How many 17-foot aluminum fishing boats have flush-mounted electronics at the helm? Not many.

As we mentioned in the video, aluminum wont’ be the first construction material choice of all bass anglers. Its light weight does mean the boat gets blown around more easily than a fiberglass boat, and foot for foot fiberglass tends to ride better. But between the easier trailering, lower initial and repair costs (note—even with maximum power and a trailer this rig barely breaks $32K), and the faster speeds with similar horsepower, for many people, a boat like the 1750 Bass Hawk is going to be exactly what they’re looking for. Is it the ideal boat for you? There’s only one way to find out for sure—get on board one, nail the throttle, and take that test ride for yourself.


Other Choices: For a model that’s a bit less bassy and a bit more multi-species, check out the Tracker Pro Guide V 16 SC. Or, if you want the protection of a full windshield, a boat like the Smoker Craft 162 Pro Angler might be of interest.

 

Crestliner 1850 Raptor SC: Freshwater Fish Hawk

This freshwater fishing bird of prey puts you in position to strike.


This article originally appeared on boats.com. Republished by permission.


Some freshwater fishing boats are aggressive hunting machines while others are simply transportation to the fish, and at a glance you can tell which one the Crestliner 1850 Raptor SC is. It looks aggressive and it acts that way, too, with a 17-degree deadrise hull that’s all-welded, up to 200 horses on the transom, and an arsenal of fishing features that will have those bass quaking in fear.

The 1850 Raptor SC strikes a pose somewhere between bass boat and multi-species boat, with the ability to fulfill the missions of both genres.
The 1850 Raptor SC strikes a pose somewhere between bass boat and multi-species boat, with the ability to fulfill the missions of both genres.

Like other Crestliners, the aluminum hull is manufactured from four interlocking tongue-and-groove pieces that are welded together. They’re backed by an extruded aluminum keel running the length of the boat, and meet at the stern at a double-welded transom. This construction allows for some very hefty powerplants—not all 18’ aluminum boats can handle 200 HP—as well as a variable-degree deadrise. While the transom has 17 degrees, the forefoot of the boat slices open waves with 35 degrees of deadrise.

Max out the power, and you’ll be breaking speeds of 50 MPH. Some might call it overkill in a boat of this nature; 150 horses more than does the trick, with a cruise of around 40 MPH and a top-end in the upper 40’s. Besides, the smaller powerplant will also help you keep cost down. And that’s going to be a big deal to a lot of anglers interested in the 1850 Raptor SC, because this is an eminently affordable boat. You can get one fairly well equipped in the mid 30’s, and shave even more off the price if you don’t load the boat with options. One word to the wise: you won’t regret paying the up-charge to get hydraulic steering; 150 or 200 horses is a lot to control with cables.

Specifications:

  • Length: 18’8″
  • Beam:  8’0″
  • Draft: N/A
  • Deadrise: 17 degrees
  • Displacement:  1,840 lbs.
  • Fuel capacity:  40 gal.

One of the things that keeps cost in check is the SC (side console) design, as opposed to the boat’s sister model, the Raptor Walk-Through, which adds a full-sized windshield and a passenger’s side console. True, that means you’ll be a lot more exposed to the weather on the SC, so if you like to go out even when there’s a driving downpour or 30 knots of wind, this design probably shouldn’t be your first choice. But that fact aside, there’s no shortage of goodies on this boat. Items like a built-in five-tray tacklebox, a locking and lighted rodbox, a pull-out fish ruler, and a 30 qt. removable cooler are all standard features.

The livewells this boat carries are a strong point, one which will be quite attractive to live bait anglers and those who need to keep fish alive until the weigh-ins. There’s a 12 gallon insulated livewell in the bowdeck, a 17 gallon insulated well in the stern, a 1.5 gallon baitwell in the forepeak, and all of them are aerated with a timer.

You can also add a number of gadgets to this rig with the SureMount gunwale mounting system. We’ve seen similar systems on aluminum boats before, but rarely with a list of options this long: tackle bags, tool holders, cutting stations, fender holders, drink holders, downrigger mounts, and even universal accessory mounts you can use for things like cell phones.

While serious bassers will opt for a bass boat and big-water multi-species anglers will likely search for a boat with more depth, the Crestliner 1850 Raptor SC provides an excellent middle-ground. If you want to hit the river for walleye one day then visit the lake for bass the next—and you don’t want to pay an exorbitant amount to do it—check this one out.

Other Choices: The Lund 1875 Crossover runs in similar waters, as does the Princecraft Xperience 188.

For more information, visit Crestliner.

 

Video: Crestliner 1650 Fish Hawk Boat Review

Our Boats.com review team put Outboard Expert Charles Plueddeman to work reviewing this compact fishing rig from Crestliner.

Read Charles’ Crestliner 1650 Fish Hawk Boat Test Notes

Video Boat Review Transcript

I’m here on one of Minnesota’s 10,000 lakes, testing the Crestliner 1650 Fish Hawk, a compact all-welded fishing rig that can do it all when it comes to angling. Except maybe put the worm on your hook.

Expert Interview

Steve, all the Fish Hawk models this year have this new console. What did you guys have in mind when you designed the shape of this?

Steve Magers, Crestliner Boats: What we were trying to achieve was plenty of room for electronics. We still have room for the smaller electronics on the side. But what we added was a platform to mount a round mount, which would bring your larger electronics right in front of the driver.

Read the full transcript of the Crestliner 1650 Fish Hawk Video Boat Review

Crestliner 1750 Pro Tiller Video Boat Review

Editor’s Note: The Boats.com video boat review team looks over a fishing boat that updates an old school steering approach: the tiller.

Read Charles’ Crestliner 1750 Pro Tiller Boat Test Notes

When I was a kid, you sat in the back of a fishing boat with your left hand on the motor. Steering wheels were for sissies. Today there are still some serious anglers who prefer the control and wide open deck that only a tiller steered boat like this Crestliner 1750 Pro Tiller can offer. It’s a traditional format but it’s not old school. Crestliner has kept its Pro Tiller line fresh and functional. Let’s check it out.

Performance

The 90 HP OptiMax outboard on our test boat is a two stroke and weighs less than a four stroke motor. That’s a great fit for this boat because you’ve already got the weight of the operator in the back so it improves performance. We had great cruising economy of 8.6 mpg at 19 mph, and a top speed of 40.4 mph.

Expert Interview

So Steve you’ve made some changes to the electronics locker on this boat. Can you show me how that works?

Steve Magers, Crestliner Boats: Well what we’ve changed is, this boat is used in rough water. So what we’ve done is stabilize the slide with a gas spring which is located here, to stabilize it when it’s out and also stabilizes when it’s in.

It looks like it’ll work a lot better than a thumb screw.

Steve: Yes it will.

So Steve, what kind of angler buys a tiller steered fishing boat?

Steve: This is for a serious fisherman that does a lot of trolling and wants a wide open cockpit.

Read the full transcript of the Crestliner 1750 Pro Tiller Video Boat Review

Crestliner 1850 Sport Fish: Video Boat Review

Charles Plueddeman reviewed this family friendly fishing boat on Boats.com. Watch the Video Boat Review. You can also check out his in depth Crestliner 1850 Sport Fish Boat Test Notes.

Family fishing boat: does that sound like an oxymoron? Crestliner doesn’t think so. This 1850 Sport Fish is designed to keep big water anglers safe and secure, but it’s also got some features that make it a great family fun boat. So you can drag bait all morning, and drag those screaming kids around in the tubes all afternoon, and never feel like you’ve made a compromise. One boat, one happy family. Let’s see how it works.

Performance

The Verado 150 on this boat delivers a nice combination of performance and economy. We got 6.2 mpg at 25 mph, that’s a nice fast cruising speed, and a top speed of 47 mph. This motor’s got some great mid-range punch, it really makes the boat fun to drive.

Expert Interview

Steve, this is pretty comfortable. It doesn’t feel like we’re sitting in a fishing boat. Who’s the customer for this Crestliner Sport Fish line?

Steve Magers, Crestliner Boats: Well this boat is for the family fisherman. It’s a very safe boat, deep freeboard, has a 17 degree deadrise hull for a smoother ride, but it has all the features of a great fishing boat.

Even a baitwell for my leeches.

Steve: Even a baitwell for your leeches.

Steve, to give it a better ride in rough water, the Sport Fish hull has seventeen degrees of deadrise. What exactly is deadrise?

Read the rest of the Crestliner 1850 Sport Fish: Video Boat Review transcript on Boats.com