Pontoon Boats & Specialty Boats
It wasn’t that long ago that pontoon boats themselves were considered specialty boats. In the 1980’s pontoon boats would be relegated to a space in the back of a dealers booth. Dealers would have every color of every model of fiberglass or bass boats on display and usually only a couple of pontoons. Display pontoons were often used as closing offices. That’s all changed today. Pontoons are no longer specialty boats, but there are several models that still carry the specialty label.
Low front fence for casting. Seats can be mounted inside or outsie the fence.
Fish n Cruise
4 Point Fisherman
Boaters have been fishing off of pontoon boats since day one. Older pontoons had large front decks and two fishing seats in front of the fence worked fine. Bass Tracker introduced the Bass Buggy in the 1980’s specifically for fishing and most manufacturers offer a pontoon set up for fishing.
The boat at the top-left of the page, is a simple platform with seats and a lot of walk around room. Above-right is a Fish N Cruise model. Fishing seats up front with seating for the family under the bimini. The boat directly above is the 4-Point Fisherman. The fence covers the entire deck with fishing seats in all four corners. An L furniture group beneath the Bimini top allows plenty of seating for cruising. The fishing seats in front are deluxe high back recliners for casting in comfort.
Extra floor plates anywhere you wish to fish.
Rebuilders Note: You can turn almost any pontoon into a fishing pontoon. Just position a fishing seat (plain or deluxe) either on the front deck or inside the rail. Mount your fishing seat on a removable pedestal and get extra floor plates. You can move the seat almost anywhere you install a floor plate.
Bow Fishing is popular in some areas. I do not believe any new boat builders build a bow fishing model but rebuilders can easily adapt on old boat for bow fishing. You just need an elevated deck in the bow.
This type of specialty boat goes by different names. Fun-Ship, Fun-Deck or just Deck Boat. It’s basically a pontoon fence, top, and upholstery, on a fiberglass hull rather than pontoons. Godfrey Marine has been building the Hurricane almost as long as their Aqua Patio, Sweetwater & Sanpan pontoons. The idea originated when pontoons were slow. A fiberglass hull provided the performance of a speed boat yet the wide flat deck gave you plenty of seating. Bayliner made a 27’ fiberglass boat, Rendezvous, in the 1990’s. It seems like with the cost of the modern aluminum chassis; bigger tubes with special features, stronger frames and transoms, etc. that the cost of a fiberglass hull might not be much more than aluminum tubes.
Hunting or wildlife observation platform. An old pontoon chassis is the perfect wide-stable platform for the sportsman or wildlife observer. Just add a framework to drape some sort of foliage over and anchor it.