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 Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40 
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Post Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40
Howdy yall, I'm finally putting money down on a rig this week. Only thing is the boat dealer im using can get me a war eagle 648 with a 40 horse power mercury or a gatortail 40 horse. I'm wondering if the outboard will leave me wanting the gatortail, its a 4,000 dollar difference between the two. Any info about how tough each one is or any pros and cons would be very appreciated.


Tue Mar 16, 2021 2:24 pm
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Post Re: Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40
Would depend on your intended use and expectations.

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Tue Mar 16, 2021 2:30 pm
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Post Re: Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40
Are you going with the war eagle hull either way?


Tue Mar 16, 2021 4:33 pm
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Post Re: Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40
Jamesriverrat wrote:
Howdy yall, I'm finally putting money down on a rig this week. Only thing is the boat dealer im using can get me a war eagle 648 with a 40 horse power mercury or a gatortail 40 horse. I'm wondering if the outboard will leave me wanting the gatortail, its a 4,000 dollar difference between the two. Any info about how tough each one is or any pros and cons would be very appreciated.



If you don't already KNOW you need a MM - get the outboard....

Overall it is far more user friendly - faster - better resale - more reliable - better in every way...

Except one.... Getting where an outboard has trouble getting into and just can't get out of...

If you put that one thing at the top of the priority list get a MM....

If you get a MM there are much cheaper options than a GTR - like a 23 LT from any major
manufacturer on just about any hull that can accept it.... But a big badass SD on an 1848
is a sweet thing in a lot of nasty places... Oh and a 16 ft hull don't work right with a big 300lb
heavy in the ass SD but is pretty sweet with the 150 lb 23 LT !

If you only have one boat - buy an outboard.... If you are not sure get a 23 LT with the
money you saved and slap it on from time to time...

A MM is a tool - not the only tool - but a tool...

You might need a good shotgun too...

A nice truck is cool...

And a dog !

Oh - and a gal that will put up with all this stuff too !

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Tue Mar 16, 2021 9:29 pm
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Post Re: Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40
What giga said. Maybe it's different in the south, but 90% of the guys I see with MM's don't need them and buy them because they think it makes them "cool duck hunters." There are very few places here in the west that necessitate a MM. There's a few but you significantly limit your applications by hanging one off your transom. They suck to fish with, Reverse is very limited, speed and load carrying are worse than with an outboard. Also, maybe they've changed their hull designs but War Eagle boat hulls are not ideal MM hulls. I owned one years ago and it was fine with an OB on the back but I wouldn't hang a MM on that hull. Is your primary use gonna be in shallow muddy or soft bottom with a lot of vegetation? If not, you don't need a MM.

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Wed Mar 17, 2021 9:44 am
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Post Re: Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40
It used to be you could have a nice tiller jon boat, with a 25-40hp outboard that was good for fishing and swap out a greasy longtail for hunting season. Or have some beater jon boat with a longtail to use during duck season, and use your nicer boat for fishing/recreation. Once surface drives started taking off, and the technology got better – reverse, neutral, power trim, and the ability to move at respectable speeds - it became feasible to have just one do it all boat. I’m sure there are those that have them and don’t really need them, but the same can be said for 4WD trucks. Noise and reliability of the outboard would be the biggest pro in the Mercury column for me. I switched rigs this year and thought long and hard about going with an outboard this time around, but it wouldn’t work for what I do most. You may need to be realistic on what you will be using it for the majority of the time, and let that make your decision.

If you do end up going with a gatortail, get a gatortail boat or some other boat designed for the abuse the surface drive is going to dish out. That may mean that the entire rig costs you a little more upfront, but you won’t be going through this process all over again in a year or two.


Wed Mar 17, 2021 1:30 pm
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Post Re: Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40
That $4000 difference will increase by $700 for heads....then, another $700 for exhaust. Then, another $1200 for cam...then, another $1500 for a performance tuner....

Let’s not even get into what the repairs will cost you.

In short...get the outboard.


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Wed Mar 17, 2021 9:01 pm
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Post Re: Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40
I appreciate all the advise, im going with a slightly different boat. Gonna be the gladiator 750 with a gatortail 40. The river i run is shallow mud and sand bottom with lots of trees and narrow cuts. I've torn up a Carolina skiff with a 20 horse several years ago and started to look at mms there just aren't alot of dealers in Virginia. I'm not concerned about speed so much as not breaking my boat running around at night/ early morning. I'll try to post a good review on it.


Thu Mar 18, 2021 10:40 am
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Post Re: Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40
Gladiator 750 - only .100 and built with a transom designed for outboards and has a
bottom profile with ribs and a mod-v - NONE of which is desirable in a mudboat hull not
to mention too short and will be heavy in the ass end which is a nightmare over sand
and buy an extra prop cause you will need one after just a few sandy bottom hunts....

Not bad for a "first" mudboat - but far from ideal....

Nearly every true mudboat is built with .125 for a good reason - and true mudboat
hulls have flat slick bottoms with no ribs for a good reason...

If your in love with that hull - the 23 LT would be the best MM for sandy bottoms as
the smaller 9" diameter prop will outperform a SD with a 12" prop over sand and
won't be heavy in the ass with the lighter 23 LT when taking off and a 23 LT will
plow out of wet cement in a pinch also prop wear is much less than with a SD...

Just so you know - each SD unlike outboards likes a different transom design
a detail seriously lost to those who are new to mudboat hull designs !

Buying a hull specifically designed for a specific SD gives the best results....

This is why guys here often talk about their "first" mudboat - because they sold it
and tried to do a better job of matching their hull to motor combo from learning
about their mistakes in their "first" mudboat....

Better luck on your "second" one in a year or two...

Just sayin' ! Took most of us 2 or 3 tries to figure out why everyone said go with at least
an 1848 and buy the hull built and sold by the same guys who build and sell the SD !

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Thu Mar 18, 2021 10:54 am
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Post Re: Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40
Still wonder why guys ask for advice here - they never listen !

:roll:

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Thu Mar 18, 2021 11:21 am
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Post Re: Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40
I hope OP buys a Dixie.


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Thu Mar 18, 2021 11:28 am
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Post Re: Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40
If you wanna do it right, listen to giga. If you want to spend a lot of coin on a boat that never really performs to its potential but you want a boat that you think looks "cool," do what you want. There is no perfect set-up for everything. You have to assess what your primary use is and the boat that bests suits that application. Every boat will have some limitations, whether it be load-carrying, speed, maneuverability, etc. You have to be honest about what you really want out of the performance of a boat and not just what you think looks cool.

Side note: Kinda comical that War Eagle is trying to enter the mudboat market wih a .100 hull with pods. :roll:

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Fri Mar 19, 2021 8:15 am
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Post Re: Mercury 40 horse or gatortail 40
0.125" flat bottom hull with a long tail motor for the conditions you described.

If you have ANY doubts, go on Instagram and look up a guy named Carson Keitt. He is in South Carolina and runs areas like you describe with an Alweld hull and a Backwater Longtail. He goes places a surface drive WISHES it could go.

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Fri Mar 26, 2021 10:17 am
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