Crestliner 1750 Fish Hawk SC

Curved surfaces are stiffer than flat planes, and during my test ride, I detected no flexing of the gunwales even while hopping wakes.

One might think that the tumblehome displayed aboard Crestliner's 1750 Fish Hawk SC is an affectation. In truth, that inboard turn of the topsides at the gunwale provides more than style lines — it's an engineering technique to maximize function. Curved surfaces are stiffer than flat planes, and during my test ride, I detected no flexing of the gunwales even while hopping wakes that kicked up late in the afternoon. Tumblehome also makes possible a little extra stowage, which Crestliner put under the 1750 Fish Hawk SC's rails. From the 8-foot lockable rod locker and the cooler/dry stowage under the aft gunwales, to the cargo netting in both sides of the bow, this boat carries loads of gear where readily accessible yet not under foot.

All welded, just like a Coast Guard cutter, this is one durable fish boat. I was particularly impressed by construction details such as the through-bolted cleats and the rugged knees bracing the transom. The welded panels comprising the hull are tongue-and-groove, and Crestliner uses aluminum for under-deck support, giving the boat a confidence-inspiring ride. It scoots onto plane, and even with the big torque from the deep 2.33:1 gear ratio of Mercury's 115 four-stroke, motor and boat never felt at odds. Re-entry coming off wakes was smooth, and reversed chines deflected spray back into the lake.

As an angler, I loved the two livewells, the additional eight-rod locker and the two huge dry lockers in the bow. But little details, such as the catchall at the bow in which to chuck lures while you're swapping them out in search of the day's hot pattern, impressed me just as much.

Extra Points
• The trolling motor battery compartment is on centerline, where adding this option won't cause a list.
• The extruded gunwale, which creates the tumblehome, provides for boat covers that attach with convenient J-hooks, rather than bothersome snaps.
• The stern livewell includes a standard bait bucket.
• Six pedestal seat locations include the raised casting deck at the stern.

Test Drive * Test Engine: Mercury 115 HP 4-stroke * Test Prop: 13" X 19" aluminum, 3-blade * Test Load: People (396 LB.) Fuel (24 GAL.) * Top Speed: 44.3 MPH @ 6,020 RPM * Most Economical Cruise Speed: 22.2 MPH @ 3,500 RPM, 3.0 GPH Vital Stats * Length Overall: 17'6" * Beam: 7'11" * Dry Weight: 1,100 LB. * Seating/Weight Capacity: 6/1,360 LB. * Fuel Capacity: 24 GAL. * Max HP: 125 * MSRP: $24,239* * NMMA Certified: Yes