Mission of the Hurricane SunDeck 217 OB
Like all Hurricane models the 217 OB is intended to seat as many people as possible and to be used as an affordable watersports platform on small lakes and rivers. Like all Hurricane deckboats the 217 can be used as a swim platform both at the bow and at the stern, making her deck a great place for kids. Mom and dad will love all of the room for socializing. Its major difference from most of the other Hurricane deckboats is that it is powered by an outboard engine.
• Designed for protected water.
When other builders began copying the deckboat concept many, of course, had to try to improve on the concept. The trouble is Hurricane got the basics right in the beginning. Kids use her as a swimming float, diving off both the bow and the stern. Her low freeboard makes it easy to re-board.
• Max, wrap-around seating.
By drawing the beam out to the bow Hurricane is able to have a U-shaped lounge that can easily seat five people with remarkable knee room. By having a port-side L-settee in the stern, the boat seats another four or five people around a café table.
• Seating capacity equals person capacity.
We are often amused that the USCG formula for calculating "passenger capacity" is usually greater than the number of seats for the average adult. Not so on the 217 OB which has a rated capacity of 10 people and can easily seat that many adults.
• No-frills base boat.
Over the years many builders have added amenities to their base boat which has naturally raised the price. Besides the obvious downside of higher pricing some buyers don't use the equipment or features built in. Hurricane has resisted that urge, has kept its price down, and allows the consumer to pick and choose the options wanted aboard from an a la carte menu.
• Changing room/head compartment.
Many boats in this size range do not have a changing room/head. The SunDeck 217 OB does and it is on the port side. Naturally, the Porta-Potti is an option.
• Outboard powered.
Perhaps as high as 95% of the sportboats built today are sterndrive powered. But that is slowly changing as the SunDeck 217 OB demonstrates.
The pedestal-mounted bucket helm seat is wide and has a bolster. The steering system is hydraulic and the wheel tilts. Instruments have fog-resistant gauges and are simple. There is an hour meter, which is a bit unusual and welcome. As usual there is storage under most of the seats so there are plenty of places to put PFDs, water toys, towels, and food. There is a 25-quart cooler and a sink on the starboard side abaft the helm. There are several aspects of the boat that are important from a safety standpoint. One of the them is the dedicated anchor locker in the bow, something we think no boat should be without. A Bimini top with boot comes as standard equipment and that is important for UV protection. All cleats and hand-holds are stainless steel.
When we look over the options list we see a number of things we would order. Fishing folks will want to go one way, and watersports dudes will go another.
We would add the optional iPod or MP3, a battery switch, and dual trays for dual batteries -- we never like to be with just one battery. Stainless steel rub rails will pay for themselves over a couple of years, particularly if kids are driving the boat.
Some people like snap-in carpet, but we could live without it in a boat like this that is designed for lots of activity. The café table that goes in the stern is optional, as is the pedestal base for another one in the bow. We'd go for two for those evening when it is nice to take a sundown cruise with friends around the lake. And, of course, we'd put in the Porta-Potti.
Anglers will want the optional live well with pump, a depth sounder, trolling motor harness and plug and rod storage clips. We'd go for the deluxe fish seat and mount it in the bow for comfortable casting.
Please keep in mind that Hurricane is constantly upgrading and changing its models so the specs of the 2012 217 SD may not be the same as what you have seen in the past on a similar model. The 2012 SunDeck 217 OB has an LOA of 20'10" (6.35 m) and an 8'6" (2.59 m) beam. With the drive up she draws 14" (0.36 m) and has a fuel capacity of 50gallons (195 L). As noted, she has a rated person capacity of 10.
According to Hurricane the boat has an MSRP as low as $33,999 when powered by the Yamaha F150TXR mentioned above. That does not include shipping, dealer prep, tax, or a trailer.
We do not believe that consumers should look at buying boats as a commodity. Buying a boat is not like ordering a load of gravel, filling up the tank with gas, or buying a pound of grapes. Most boat builders have their "sweet spot" to entice consumers and obviously some use price. But there is more to a boat than that.
Look at utility.
We'd suggest the buyers first look at the boat's "utility" for their purpose. For example, if there are ten people in a family or group of friends then a boat that holds ten people no matter how much it costs should be considered. If you have several young kids who love to jump off the boat into the water and paddle around, then a boat that can act like a swim float will provide hours of fun for them and joy for the adults. Finally, there are many boaters who prefer outboard power to sterndrives. Since outboard-powered sportboats are in the minority you may find it easier to sell one on the used boat market.
Standard and Optional Features
|Washdown: Fresh Water||Optional|
|Carpet: Cockpit||Optional Snap-in|
|Outlet: 12-Volt Acc||Standard|