I LOVE my boat - is it overengineered?

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paul001

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Back at table rock lake when I was 17, my Dad bought me a 1982 18' McFast, 150 Johnson, trolling motor with one battery I manually charge after each fishing trip - simple and effective. I still have it and do the work on it myself when I go home and fish.

Three months ago I purchased a new ZV19 Sport ($70k with upgrades). It is absolutely amazing, and it is everything I could ask for in a boat and more. But is it too engineered for me to get functional?
  • Motor. Leaked oil (kink in hose), fixed and no problems since.
  • Leak. Breaking in motor - the hose for the speedometer pressure was not secured - spewed water under steering wheel on all the electronics. Fixed.
  • Electronics. USB ports, radio and back depth finder became inoperable. Short in a battery cable, with significant sulfidation on all four batteries. Cable fixed, batteries cleaned.
  • Auto-Bilge. Didn’t work, no floater originally installed. Fixed (light panel for auto-bilge still doesn’t work, but don't care).
  • Cover. The cover doesn’t fit (too short for Ultrex), so can’t be secured to frame. Cover acts as tarp with bungie cords, unable to prevent pooling. Currently, boat is in a wet slip. During each rain I have to periodically check boat, dump ponding water, retie boat cover down (which is fruitless) and manually operate bilge pump to prevent floundering. I am constantly looking outside at weather and checking forecasts. I can’t leave town or be unavailable during any rain for more than a couple of hours. Still waiting on replacement cover.
  • NEW: Battery Charger. The Noco Gen4 charger hasn't charged the batteries since it has been back from shop. No lights, at all. Confirmed 124 volts going into boat socket and socket secured to charger.
  • NEW: Battery. While checking voltage of AC, I also checked the batteries. One battery is dead. All four batteries indicate sulfidation starting again, so all four brand new batteries probably shot.
This will be my 4th visit to Cabela's, and my family is losing patience - so now I have to deal with that. I'm constantly taking off work to get boat to Cabela's or back to slip from public ramp - or bilge it when it rains (to the hysterics of my friends). I have to admit, it is starting to weigh on me.

I don't regret the decision, and Cabela's has been great and everything under warranty. But, I just want it to be generally functional for its purpose. I'm caught between spending 100 hours going through manuals and attending YouTube school to learn every wire, seal and hose on that boat so I can troubleshoot and fix everything, or fire sell it. At night, I actually take comfort that I can always just buy an old simple McFast fiberglass boat, foot controlled trolling motor, Walmart battery and charger, and go fishing. Honestly, I just want to fish.
 

olefisherman456

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north east ks.
I hear you loud and clear. had a 16 foot lowe line, early attempt at a tin bass boat fore and aft swivel seats, stick steer, small trolling motor,and vexelar graph . could fix anything on it . 50s model 40 horse merc. tore it down and worked on it three times in 20 yrs.it would fly and the graph would show a 1/16 oz jig in 30 ft of water. got a diffrent boat ,nitro 160 .trim and tilt stopped working . took almost 3 months to fix .glass boats dont work without it.
 

Twinpalms

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Apr 29, 2019
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Southern California
Back at table rock lake when I was 17, my Dad bought me a 1982 18' McFast, 150 Johnson, trolling motor with one battery I manually charge after each fishing trip - simple and effective. I still have it and do the work on it myself when I go home and fish.

Three months ago I purchased a new ZV19 Sport ($70k with upgrades). It is absolutely amazing, and it is everything I could ask for in a boat and more. But is it too engineered for me to get functional?
  • Motor. Leaked oil (kink in hose), fixed and no problems since.
  • Leak. Breaking in motor - the hose for the speedometer pressure was not secured - spewed water under steering wheel on all the electronics. Fixed.
  • Electronics. USB ports, radio and back depth finder became inoperable. Short in a battery cable, with significant sulfidation on all four batteries. Cable fixed, batteries cleaned.
  • Auto-Bilge. Didn’t work, no floater originally installed. Fixed (light panel for auto-bilge still doesn’t work, but don't care).
  • Cover. The cover doesn’t fit (too short for Ultrex), so can’t be secured to frame. Cover acts as tarp with bungie cords, unable to prevent pooling. Currently, boat is in a wet slip. During each rain I have to periodically check boat, dump ponding water, retie boat cover down (which is fruitless) and manually operate bilge pump to prevent floundering. I am constantly looking outside at weather and checking forecasts. I can’t leave town or be unavailable during any rain for more than a couple of hours. Still waiting on replacement cover.
  • NEW: Battery Charger. The Noco Gen4 charger hasn't charged the batteries since it has been back from shop. No lights, at all. Confirmed 124 volts going into boat socket and socket secured to charger.
  • NEW: Battery. While checking voltage of AC, I also checked the batteries. One battery is dead. All four batteries indicate sulfidation starting again, so all four brand new batteries probably shot.
This will be my 4th visit to Cabela's, and my family is losing patience - so now I have to deal with that. I'm constantly taking off work to get boat to Cabela's or back to slip from public ramp - or bilge it when it rains (to the hysterics of my friends). I have to admit, it is starting to weigh on me.

I don't regret the decision, and Cabela's has been great and everything under warranty. But, I just want it to be generally functional for its purpose. I'm caught between spending 100 hours going through manuals and attending YouTube school to learn every wire, seal and hose on that boat so I can troubleshoot and fix everything, or fire sell it. At night, I actually take comfort that I can always just buy an old simple McFast fiberglass boat, foot controlled trolling motor, Walmart battery and charger, and go fishing. Honestly, I just want to fish.
Glad that Cabela is working with you. BPS marine in Ontario, CA is another story. If you take your boat in for a problem and the “computer” can’t recognize the issue, well…. you‘re on your own. They can’t fix anything. Just prep new boats for new owners.
 

DONAOL

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Joined
Mar 25, 2021
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90
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Location
Finger Lakes
Back at table rock lake when I was 17, my Dad bought me a 1982 18' McFast, 150 Johnson, trolling motor with one battery I manually charge after each fishing trip - simple and effective. I still have it and do the work on it myself when I go home and fish.

Three months ago I purchased a new ZV19 Sport ($70k with upgrades). It is absolutely amazing, and it is everything I could ask for in a boat and more. But is it too engineered for me to get functional?
  • Motor. Leaked oil (kink in hose), fixed and no problems since.
  • Leak. Breaking in motor - the hose for the speedometer pressure was not secured - spewed water under steering wheel on all the electronics. Fixed.
  • Electronics. USB ports, radio and back depth finder became inoperable. Short in a battery cable, with significant sulfidation on all four batteries. Cable fixed, batteries cleaned.
  • Auto-Bilge. Didn’t work, no floater originally installed. Fixed (light panel for auto-bilge still doesn’t work, but don't care).
  • Cover. The cover doesn’t fit (too short for Ultrex), so can’t be secured to frame. Cover acts as tarp with bungie cords, unable to prevent pooling. Currently, boat is in a wet slip. During each rain I have to periodically check boat, dump ponding water, retie boat cover down (which is fruitless) and manually operate bilge pump to prevent floundering. I am constantly looking outside at weather and checking forecasts. I can’t leave town or be unavailable during any rain for more than a couple of hours. Still waiting on replacement cover.
  • NEW: Battery Charger. The Noco Gen4 charger hasn't charged the batteries since it has been back from shop. No lights, at all. Confirmed 124 volts going into boat socket and socket secured to charger.
  • NEW: Battery. While checking voltage of AC, I also checked the batteries. One battery is dead. All four batteries indicate sulfidation starting again, so all four brand new batteries probably shot.
This will be my 4th visit to Cabela's, and my family is losing patience - so now I have to deal with that. I'm constantly taking off work to get boat to Cabela's or back to slip from public ramp - or bilge it when it rains (to the hysterics of my friends). I have to admit, it is starting to weigh on me.

I don't regret the decision, and Cabela's has been great and everything under warranty. But, I just want it to be generally functional for its purpose. I'm caught between spending 100 hours going through manuals and attending YouTube school to learn every wire, seal and hose on that boat so I can troubleshoot and fix everything, or fire sell it. At night, I actually take comfort that I can always just buy an old simple McFast fiberglass boat, foot controlled trolling motor, Walmart battery and charger, and go fishing. Honestly, I just want to fish.
I’m right there with you. I’ve had 17 problems with my 2021 Nitro Z19 Sport. With out a doubt the Nitro quality control is very poor. Tracker service center has been pretty good about fixing most of the problems. Like you I fixed some myself. Right now three items left, new prop, mine is rusting and pitting, Bimini top frame damaged during shipping and the passenger dash has a hole in it, marks and gel coat peeling from day one. Four months on old. Have emailed Nitro and I don’t think they care.
 

Cory190tx

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May 25, 2020
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Location
Lago Vista, Tx
Back at table rock lake when I was 17, my Dad bought me a 1982 18' McFast, 150 Johnson, trolling motor with one battery I manually charge after each fishing trip - simple and effective. I still have it and do the work on it myself when I go home and fish.

Three months ago I purchased a new ZV19 Sport ($70k with upgrades). It is absolutely amazing, and it is everything I could ask for in a boat and more. But is it too engineered for me to get functional?
  • Motor. Leaked oil (kink in hose), fixed and no problems since.
  • Leak. Breaking in motor - the hose for the speedometer pressure was not secured - spewed water under steering wheel on all the electronics. Fixed.
  • Electronics. USB ports, radio and back depth finder became inoperable. Short in a battery cable, with significant sulfidation on all four batteries. Cable fixed, batteries cleaned.
  • Auto-Bilge. Didn’t work, no floater originally installed. Fixed (light panel for auto-bilge still doesn’t work, but don't care).
  • Cover. The cover doesn’t fit (too short for Ultrex), so can’t be secured to frame. Cover acts as tarp with bungie cords, unable to prevent pooling. Currently, boat is in a wet slip. During each rain I have to periodically check boat, dump ponding water, retie boat cover down (which is fruitless) and manually operate bilge pump to prevent floundering. I am constantly looking outside at weather and checking forecasts. I can’t leave town or be unavailable during any rain for more than a couple of hours. Still waiting on replacement cover.
  • NEW: Battery Charger. The Noco Gen4 charger hasn't charged the batteries since it has been back from shop. No lights, at all. Confirmed 124 volts going into boat socket and socket secured to charger.
  • NEW: Battery. While checking voltage of AC, I also checked the batteries. One battery is dead. All four batteries indicate sulfidation starting again, so all four brand new batteries probably shot.
This will be my 4th visit to Cabela's, and my family is losing patience - so now I have to deal with that. I'm constantly taking off work to get boat to Cabela's or back to slip from public ramp - or bilge it when it rains (to the hysterics of my friends). I have to admit, it is starting to weigh on me.

I don't regret the decision, and Cabela's has been great and everything under warranty. But, I just want it to be generally functional for its purpose. I'm caught between spending 100 hours going through manuals and attending YouTube school to learn every wire, seal and hose on that boat so I can troubleshoot and fix everything, or fire sell it. At night, I actually take comfort that I can always just buy an old simple McFast fiberglass boat, foot controlled trolling motor, Walmart battery and charger, and go fishing. Honestly, I just want to fish.
I’ve heard of buying a boat that was built on a Friday. But damn, I’ve never heard of everything else on the boat being built on Friday too! Hope it all works out for you but that’s a lot of unrelated stuff not functioning properly!
 

paul001

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Follow up - Got the boat back from the shop late that same week I posted. Boat has been absolutely perfect for the last two months, been fishing almost every morning. No other issues - all of the electrical/bad battery issues came from a faulty Gen4 charger. They replaced it and the battery which went bad because of it.
 

Kirby Wilson

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Springfield, MO
That is the only problem with buying a new boat, working on fixing all of the quirks. I happens on all brands of boats, just breaking in of a new boat. Once all is done then you still have a new boat without the problems.
Enjoy your new boat.
 

Allen Dronsfield

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Central, Fl.
Paul, Kirby is pretty much right with the quirks. Also the commentary about customer service, I completely agree that Tracker and White River could care less about your problems, they sold the boat now you deal with it. I have had my boat into the BPS Gainesville, Fl. Greg runs the service dept. and Greg is top notch.
My list of new boat glitches has been long on this 2019 Z20 Pro. poor set up from dealership, electrolysis on the lower end of the Ultex, anode, prop, lower end nuts on the ProXS, chine walk issues, etc. Like many of you I also had contacted Tracker, pretty much a waste of time. You would think that KVD and Ott Defoe and the rest of the pros that run Nitro's would step up to the plate and put some pressure on Tracker to change their ways. I have communicated with KVD a couple of times about the chine walk but I have had the engine raised and lowered on the jack plate and BPS was told by Tracker to put the engine back where they had it. I now regulate it with the hydraulic jack plate, about 2" great hole shot but chine walk kicks in about 66 mph on gps 70 on the gage. This boat had been test driven after the set up by the dealership at 78 mph, I have never been able to get past the chine walk to go that fast. Paul, I wish you the best with your issues. Kirby is also right that there are issues with all brands. I've even had a couple of hard core Ranger guy's state that they wish they had ket they're Nitro's rather than buying the Ranger's. Quality control on Tracker products comes by way of the owners not the manufacturer.
 

DONAOL

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Mar 25, 2021
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Finger Lakes
I’m right there with you. I’ve had 17 problems with my 2021 Nitro Z19 Sport. With out a doubt the Nitro quality control is very poor. Tracker service center has been pretty good about fixing most of the problems. Like you I fixed some myself. Right now three items left, new prop, mine is rusting and pitting, Bimini top frame damaged during shipping and the passenger dash has a hole in it, marks and gel coat peeling from day one. Four months on old. Have emailed Nitro and I don’t think they care.
UPDATE: Here it is five months of waiting and I still need a replacement prop, bimini frame and new console without a hole in it.. The replacement prop came in, but it was a used prop. I think Nitro and White River Marine could care less. Tracker service center is doing what they can, BUT they have not been given the parts. I to have wasted my time and extra money to repair this boat and Nitro / White River Marine will not reimburse me for my loss. Sad state of the times. "Buyer Be Ware" .
 

maybrfd

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Nov 6, 2020
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Mountain Home
As a one armed grease monkey and electron chaser, I can personally attest that I have fixed as many things as I have broken. I think any time you mass produce anything with humans, errors will occur. With mine, a couple of simple items, a broken speaker cover due to an over zealous tech, who broke a speaker ring so the cover wouldn't fit, and a couple of spot welds on the Rod locker cover. Having said that, both companies (seller and manufacturer) eventually stepped up. Sorry to hear about your issues, and hope, like I, that you responsible folks step up to the plate, so you can enjoy your craft for many seasons to come. I do love a trouble free day on the water!
 

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