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North River Trapper vs Commander

21290 Views 10 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  GOFISH
Well, I am currently re-visiting the topic of a new boat.......again..sooner or later, I am going to pull the trigger. Hopefully sooner! ;D

I am trying to decide on a boat I can take out in the salt, yet be able to run it in the river the majority of the time. I am wondering if anyone that has a Trapper or Commander has ran them out in the salt and how they handled the chop out in the salt.

Is there much difference really in the two models as far as the ride goes? I know on the river they are both superior rides, but as far as in the salt, I am not sure at all.

Any input would be appreciated.

Thank you in advance

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I have taken mine out in the salt on quite a few occaisions ..... no problem with the chop out there ....... same as a rough stretch out on the river or Harrison Lake during a blow ........ just watch for swells though as they can be fun. :happy:

Was out on Sunday ......... trolling along and all of a sudden about 5 or 6 big swells (6 - 7 feet)came in from the West. Couldn't figure out where they came from ??? ....... then found out later when I got home about the Sunami in the South Pacific. Thought it might be related ..... my wife thought I was crazy.

Then this am at work my cell rang ..... it was my wife telling me that there were many reports on the radio by boaters that noticed similar effects from it.

Wow, makes you really think!! :eek: That could have been so much worse I would say you are one lucky SOB! :thumbup:


As far as the difference betweem a Trapper or Commander, there was not much of a differnce. Mostly cosmetics and features, accesories, other than that they we the same! 2007 is a different story! If you want a Commander, you have to get it in the CommanderX, 21.6 ft, 78 inch beam and of coarse in the bigger sizes, 22ft, 23ft, 24ft etc. They don't make a the 21 foot Commander anymore, just the trapper in that size now.

I bought the 21 foot Commander last year before it got discontinued and absolutly love it! One of the main reasons I purchased the North River over other brands, was the gas mileage. When it came down to me purchasing a boat, it was between the north River and the Custom Weld, both very nice boats with a few major differences, at least I think so! The Customweld burnt 11.7 gallons per hour at 3,400 RPM's. The North river is about 400+ pounds lighter and burnt 7.9 gallons per hour at 3,400 RPM's. That is with the same jet pump, hamilton and virtually the exact same motor! :eek: My :2cents: Hope this helps
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Hey Berg

Hope this is not to much off topic but I was just wondering with all the research you did before your boat purchase,did you look at the Thunder jets and what was your opinion on them. I was looking at all the jets at the sportsman show and I know you did a lot of home work, Thought maybe I could skip some of the leg work and just pick your brain.

Centerpin 8)
Hey Centerpin, I was shopping there in Feb and Berg had PM'ed me a intresting tid bit, it was intresting to see that with the North Rivers were say the base priced one of the highest, BUT by the time you added all the extra's to some of the competitors to bring it up to the standard feature offered on the NR the pricing was damn near the same. Go over the standard offerd spec with a fine tooth comb.
P.S. Hey Rick is there another dealer for North Rivers here in the valley except our local one, not to name names.
Crazy D
Crazy Drifter said:
P.S. Hey Rick is there another dealer for North Rivers here in the valley except our local one, not to name names.
Nope, they are the only place in BC. Who were you dealing with their? Send me a PM!
I have the NR Sportster and I love it!! Small motor cover in the back gives lot's of room to fish. The Commander is the full up model and the trapper is the same boat as mine but with a different poer plant. You may want to take a look at the Trapper with the 4.3L V6 chev motor in it. Better mileage and more fishing room. Like I said, I love my NR, you won't find a better structurally built boat, but if I was looking to fish out of the boat all of the time and I needed the power of a V8 I would look at the Custom Welds with the built up fishing platforms. A couple of my buddies have the CW's and they love them. They are a little heavy and missing some of the detail I like but, they are a good boat. The North Rivers with the bigger V8's don't have much room to fish in the back compared to other models.

Down here you can get a new Trapper with the V6 in it for around $25,000 USD with good options. The V6 has plenty of snap. The guys at NR in Portland will take you on some awesome test rides, in some very skinny rivers and show you what the different models can do. I would take full advantage of that. They can also take you on a tour of the Man. Plant which is a couple hours south of Portland.
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here is my 2 cents , when you build a boat apples to apples you get the same price or very close, there is a few things to consider, What you are going to use the boat for, how you want the finishing and so on, I would buy a north river any day before I would bu a CW because of the components put into a boat, when we started I test drove 28 different river boat companies, did you know there were that many!!!!! very few were build through the exact same production line, When we build boats you get what you order, such as dual wipers, you dont get one moter powering 2 wipers, welded on cleats are not an upcharge, full bow bracing you dont pay extra for or the formed sides, forming a side reduce having to weld in structural supports that flat sided boats really need to be as strong, thickness of the flooring is important as well, and I hate the gaps in the sides for bait to get into, I like everything that should be welded, welded on, and I like that I can sit on my gunnels while fishing, I like a high swim grid. I like not having to stand up to see out the window and I like my steering wheel centered, I do not want to have to corrective steer as I am running my boat for long trips, IE.. Chine walk, I like a 4 point motor mount system over a 2 point any day, If you ask a north river owner you will get a biased opinion, Because he or she thought their purchase was the best , same if you aske CW or a t-jet dealer, all the same biased opinions, BTW Rick I never saw you stop by to actually compare the boats apples to apples, ;)by the way on a t-jet with a 1/4 inch bottom and a fixed frame top and slider windows, 350BFI and 212 we have it running at 6.8 GPH at 3400 with 4 people on board and a 50 gallon tank up the fraser to the mouth of the vedder, that boat was doing on the gps 31.4 MPH At wot 4050 rpm it was at 13.4 GPH and 46 MPH
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fuel rating should be taken with a grain of salt because air temperature makes a massive difference in fuel consumption. A 350 fuel injected with burn anywhere from 6 to 8 gallons an hour at 3400 rpm depending on the air temperature with a 2.4 kW impeller in a 212 hamilton. I take fuel readings on every pdi I do and they are all over the map. I have seen boats that are broken in get as little as 5 gal per hour in january and brand new engines in the middle of august burning 8.5 at 3400.
Hey, how come I never get the pleasure of having them clean my boat??? :happy: :happy:

Is that another diff. between a Trapper & Commander??? Something tells me I should have bought the Commander then ...... either way betcha business would definately pick up!!! :beerchug:

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