Captain's ReportNo Compromise Fish and SkiBy Capt. Keith Burton Test CaptainA flock of ducks surrounded our dock quacking and squawking away. It sounded almost like an audience of football fans at a Friday night game cheering us on as we launched the Skeeter SL190 for a full compliment of tests.The SL190 is a well thought out fish and ski with emphasis on fishing. Maybe the ducks thought they were going to get a treat. But the treat was on us as the SL190 didn’t take long to impress. First off, this is a very attractive boat. The fiberglass finish is top notch and the use of colors and a neat design marked this Skeeter boat as one to get folk’s attention.At 18’5” the engineers and designers packed the SL190 with a host of features that would please the whole family, whether they were into fishing or skiing. Clearly the approach was to make fishing a joy. Deck space is plentiful for this type of boat, and along with numerous storage bins for your fishing gear and skis you can keep the interior clutter free for a fun day on the water.We particularly liked the way Skeeter design the hatch latches. They are large compared to many other boats, and are designed to last. This is not a boat where compartment covers are going to fly up while underway at high speed.Feature LadenSkeeter has thoughtfully equipped this boat with numerous standard features, the type that you want. The cabin comes complete with a full set of instruments nestled in a smartly designed console. A full wraparound windshield with center walkthrough keeps the cabin comfortable at all speeds. There is a CD stereo radio and overpadded seats throughout the SL190 for added comfort underway. The center section of the rear bench seat can be removed for easier access from the stern deck into the cabin.Skiers will like the standard tow pylon that mounts in the same location as the rear deck fishing seat. It is easy to install and remove with just a few twists. A stern ladder is part of the package as well. We particularly like the anti-skid surface material applied to the corners of the boat and the full stainless steel grab rails along the gunnels port and starboard.At the bow is another fishing seat mount. But if fishing is not on the day’s agenda the bow can be framed with two comfy pads for enjoying the sun. As you would expect, storage compartment can be found throughout the cabin. At the rear are two livewells for your catch. There is below deck storage for your fishing rods and ski equipment and a built-in cooler under the center bench seat.Performance and HandlingOn the water the SL190 offers surprising performance when equipped with a Yamaha 150 horsepower four-stroke outboard and 14 ½ by 21 inch propeller. We found her best cruise just under 26mph at 3000rpm with a range of 182 miles. We achieved a top speed of 57.1 mph with two people onboard and a quick 2.2 seconds to plane, plenty fast for skiing.The SL190’s hull also makes easy work of choppy conditions, slicing through waves and wakes without any pounding or noisy hull slap. The overall feel is one of solid construction.Skeeter tells us that they use a state-of-the-art CAD-CAM design system to produce their boats with very tight tolerances. But that is not all. Once the design is set in the computer, it is checked for accuracy, then digitized and sent to a 5-axis CNC milling machine, which creates the design full-scale. You end up with a boat of precise symmetry and form. The on-the-water performance is proof that their design system works.Overall, the Skeeter SL190 is an attractive and well-designed boat with excellent performance and good speed. We especially liked the smooth performance over the water at high speeds and the solid construction underneath us. It is packed with innovative features that we think add a lot of value and fun in a fish and ski.
Test Result Highlights
- Top speed for the Skeeter SL190 (2005) is 57.1 mph (91.9 kph), burning 15.9 gallons per hour (gph) or 60.18 liters per hour (lph).
- Best cruise for the Skeeter SL190 (2005) is 31.4 mph (50.5 kph), and the boat gets 6.74 miles per gallon (mpg) or 2.87 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 182 miles (292.9 kilometers).
- Tested power is 1 x 150-hp Yamaha Four-Stroke.
- Time to plane for the Skeeter SL190 (2005) is 2.2 sec. seconds.
- Time from 0 to 30 of the Skeeter SL190 (2005) is 4.9 sec. seconds.
Standard and Optional Features
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