What Sea Ray models do you love and why?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Covedog, Jan 3, 2014.

  1. Covedog

    Covedog New Member

    Mar 8, 2012
    Bainbridge Island
    2008 340 DA, 2015 Glastron 160 gt, Pygmy glass over mahogany 17.5 and 14.5 kayaks (I built)
    Twin 8.1 Merc V Drive on the 340, 75 Merc on the Glastron, Lehr 2.5 on Saturn tender
    This should be fun! I'll get the topic started with my previous boat, the 99 290. Loved that boat for all that it did for the size of the boat, gangways to access the bow (I leave canvas forward of the radar arch up 24/7 so a walk thru windshield doesn't cut it for me - and I upgrade the canvas windshields to polycarbonate so you really don't want to be taking the sections in and out). The Admiral started hating the cockpit layout - not having a forward facing seat while underway so bye bye 290.
    Hello 340! I had been researching boats all last winter (and had a few months down due to surgery so had extra research time) and kept coming back to the 2003 and newer 340's. Found the right boat and got her last summer.
    We typically day boat and occasionally destination cruise so it's mostly just two of us on the boat and a few guests now and then. Always just us two sleeping on the boat.
    Underway, we love the 3 cockpit forward facing seats that allow 3 or 4 to hang out up front and chat. And my upgraded polycarbonate windows make the cockpit forward and lateral views totally transparent and it feels so open and airy.
    The Salon is roomy, open and airy yet nice and private for sleeping with curtains closed. The gloss cherry wood is rich and timeless. Aft couch/berth is great to hang out when someone is sleeping or napping in forward berth.
    Nice gangways make bow, anchor and forward cleat access a breeze without affecting cockpit activities.
    Aft cockpit seating with table is great for meals or happy hour or just hanging out.
    The (gorgeous black) hull is fast, efficient and seakindly in a wide range of conditions, and you really only need tabs for lateral trim.
    And, those twin 8.1's with V drives are fantastic.
    So, for how we use the boat, I think the layout and design makes the 340 one of the best Sea Ray designs. I also like the current 450 and 580 Sundancers as they are bigger and sweeter versions of the same basic concept!
    Last but not least: My boat gets so many compliments every where we go! I sure like that!
  2. HUMPH

    HUMPH Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Nov 4, 2009
    2003 410DA,
    2009 Walker Bay 13’
    CAT 3126TA's 350HP/
    50HP Honda
    There is something about the early 2000's 410DA that I like. I just can't put my finger on it...
    But seriously folks, it depends on the area I am boating in and what we are doing. Where we are and how we boat on the Delta, a 38' to 45' boat is perfect. If I am taking trips out in the Pacific, the 560DB hands down. Cruising the waters of FLA may be different as would a lake in the middle of the Country somewhere. I maybe would prefer a 350SLX there.
  3. blaster

    blaster Active Member

    May 23, 2011
    potomac river
    2010 sea ray 205 sport
    F150 5.4 xlt 4x4
    Mercruiser 4.3 mpi alpha 1.62
    I really love my 205 sport. Its a perfect size to trailer long distances and its not too heavy. Its great for hauling the kids around and for water sports. My floor plan has lots of open space to walk around instead of just sitting in a seat. It has plenty of power with the standard propultion and it gets good fuel economy for a boat in its class. It handles rough water well and is a sturdy ride. And it fits my needs perfectly.
  4. wjglampe

    wjglampe Member

    Dec 5, 2011
    Minnesota St. Croix River
    03 450EB 6CTA 8.3 480C Cummins
    08 350DA 8.1's SLD
    02 340DA 8.1's SLD
    89 32 Carver Aft SLD
    6CTA 8.3 480C Cummins V drives
    I almost purchased the newer 340 for all of the same reasons you mentioned until I came across the 2008 350DA hardtop. That has everything the 340 has and MORE. Built in grill, walkthrough windshield, helm bolsters that swivel to the rear, separate shower, transom rumble seat, etc... Obviously everyone's budget is different but the 2008/2009 350DA hardtop is one sexy boat. It was rebranded a 370DA in 2010. (Same hull).
  5. boltman

    boltman Active Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Flint/Swartz Creek MI, Ported in Whitehall/Montagu
    480 Sedan Bridge
    "Sea Ray's Best Boat Ever Made"
    700 hp MANS Diesels Thundering Cathedrals of Torque!!
    480 sedan bridge 2003 and a 1987 22' Pachanga and I'm still looking for s cherry mint pachanga missed one in Kentucky last year .....
    And as for why everyone knows the 480 is Sea Rays best boat ever and so was the 22' pachanga .
  6. CV-23

    CV-23 New Member

    Jun 25, 2010
    Williamsport, PA
    1990 270 Sundancer, 2003 Ford Excursion 4x4 Limited
    454 merCruiser w/Bravo 1
    Since I'm a buy it for cash guy, we wanted the largest, best built boat, 1989 or newer that could be trailered and priced under $20,000. Along came a two owner 1990 270DA with a like new trailer built for it. It was maintained by a Sea Ray Dealer and had lots of records of service done and only750 hours. We looked at about 8 of these boats with V6 twins or a single engine 454 setup. None were as nice as this one and it had a trailer! The Single 454 Bravo1 setup is tried and true and cruises with authority.....plenty of room to work also in the bilge! To replace this cabin setup and cockpit space, we would now have to go over 30ft now and twins. The only other model I would now consider with twins would be the 1989-1992 280......a huge 280 with real 350/260hp roller cam motors. We have one of these V8's in our CV-23 that runs 50mph all day if needed. The Bravo1 is nice but the Alpha 1's are easy to work on and counter rotating would be sweet. The larger beam of the 280 at 10' 5" could be an issue where we now boat but it would be one sweet ride. Just love the 270 or some call it a 290. For a newer boat....the 2002 300DA with 5.7L twins would be nice...Mike.
  7. dwna1a

    dwna1a Well-Known Member PLATINUM Sponsor

    Apr 23, 2012
    James River
    88 Weekender 300 "Seahorse"
    Twins 350
    Like CV I wanted to pay cash and my wife set the price at 10gs. I knew I wanted twins, inboards, and a WE. I had a Sundancer back in the 90's. The rear berth always smelled of gas and exhaust fumes with no head room. Now that I have the 300 with the hardtop....my next one WILL have a hardtop! I love the lines of the 48SB, she looks like a SeaRay. I would love to see one up close and take a walk around her, but for now I'm very happy with my 300
  8. Quint4

    Quint4 Well-Known Member TECHNICAL Contributor SILVER Sponsor

    Oct 6, 2006
    S.W. Ohio
    330 Sport Bridge
    5.7 MPI 350 Merc Bluewaters
    I think the mid to late late 90's era 330DAs have that timeless Sea Ray profile.

    Kinda like a '78 vette.....it never gets old.

    I came close to buying this perfect 1998:

  9. my3sons

    my3sons Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    Feb 24, 2009
    Upstate NY (lake Erie)
    2004 400DB, Onan 9 kw Gen, Highfield RIB,
    Cummins 6CTA
    The 80's....late 80's 390. That is an awesome boat that every time I see one that is well kept/restored, I melt
    The 90's.... the mid to late 90's 370 DA.
    Honorable mention.....Never knew much about the 410 express, but recently have been able to spend a little time on a 2000 410 express, and the straight 450 HP Cummins make this boat awesome to drive and a joy to work on in the engine room. A real sleeper, they should be more popular than they are IMO.
    We have recently "come out from down below" on a model we have been waiting for to get old enough to buy, and so far so good.

    The Sea Ray that started it all with us was a mid 80's 340. It was from the 1000 Islands area, Green canvas, well kept and maintained teak work, named "Care Free"
    We would see it for many years when we visited the area, and every year we saw it, it looked better than the year before. We dreamed of the day we could own a boat like that. We often talk about how that boat is responsible for making Sea Ray owners out of us.
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2014
  10. Joe5.0

    Joe5.0 New Member

    Jun 18, 2012
    Lake St. Clair
    276 Cuddy Cabin
    350 MAG ECT w/B3
    I think the 280 / 290 Sun Sport's are pretty timeless and an awesome layout. Not many cuddies made anymore with a 9'+ beam and under 30'. I couldnt find the "right" one local, so we ended up buying new, but I still search to see what's out there. I sometimes wonder how much I'd like twin 350 Mag's with the Corsa exhaust......
  11. Big Island Lifer

    Big Island Lifer Active Member

    Feb 1, 2010
    '96 330 Formula SS
    For Sale '85 255 Amberjack
    Single 5.7
    92-94 310 Amberjack. The 94 is my favorite. A classic day boat disguised as a fishing boat. A huge beam in a relatively short package.
  12. BritLady

    BritLady Active Member

    Jul 30, 2011
    FL West Coast
    2006 - 340 SeaRay Sundancer, Garmin 840XS GPS & Garmin 7401XS GPS
    2013 - Mercury 280 RIB Dink 8'10"
    Inboard 8.1 Horizon Mercruiser & 2015 6HP Tohatsu O/B.
  13. Bryank

    Bryank Member

    Jul 3, 2008
    Catawba Island, OH
    2001 410DA
    Mercruiser 8.1S Horizons
    I have owned six boats and the best Sea Ray has been the 410DA I own now. For my situation I could not imagine a better layout and utilization of space and comfort. The boat performs well, even with gassers, though it does get thirsty. With this boat, I feel like I will only downsize from here.

    Still, my 2004 Formula 34PC was the best boat I owned overall in terms of performance, QUALITY, and overall fun. But that's not what this topic is about, so I digress...
  14. xravenx

    xravenx Member

    Oct 5, 2006
    Baltimore, Md.
    370 Sundancer 1995
    8.1s (2013) w/ V drives
    For me it is the mid to late 90s 450DA, second best boat Sea Ray ever made. It is like a 370DA on steroids, should have bought one a few years ago when I had the chance. Saw a couple votes for the mid to late 90s 370DA, seems the 330DA, 370DA and the 450DA has a look that will never look dated
  15. Converse48

    Converse48 Well-Known Member

    Nov 20, 2006
    Chesapeake Bay
    2010 McKinna 57 Pilothouse
    The original 24 "weekender" from the late 70s, early 80s was a true breakthrough. I remember a boating family that I grew up with (on Bush River no less, John) who bought one, and it had more usable room and sleeping space than the 31' Ulrichsen my Dad was rocking at the time. And it was fiberglass! Woot woot.

    As others have stated, the late 80s early 90s 390 wide body were awesome boats. Dad had a diesel version, my brother had one with 454s. Both were really great boats. That back deck went on for miles!

    But the top for me is the 480DB/50DB/52DB model in all its various iterations. Probably the 52DB with MANs being the peak of the evolution of this species.

    I like the little boats too… a buddy has a 180 that is to die for.
  16. ZZ13

    ZZ13 Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Nov 25, 2009
    Lady's Island, SC
    2001 400 Sedan Bridge
    Cummins 450 Diamond
    Anything built from 2002-2008. Those boats look so sleek. They will look new 30 years from now.
  17. fwebster

    fwebster Well-Known Member TECHNICAL Contributor PLATINUM Sponsor

    Oct 6, 2006
    Middle Tennessee ; Panama City Beach, FL
    1996 450DA
    3116 Caterpillars
    Not just because we own one, but the 90's 450DA is in the top 2-3 best ever Sea Rays produced.

    1. timeless styling…..I am still asked regularly by buyers in our marina (new catalog under their arm, walking to docks after getting confused by the choices) where is "that one" in the catalog?
    2. easiest big boat to handle, by far. They are perfect for a couple, particularly if the lady isn't adept at line handling. No thruster needed.
    3. a little slow @ 20 its, but very efficient……about 20 gph at cruise
    4. huge interior….2 heads, sliding pocket doors between sleeping areas
    5. With a 14 ft beam, the cockpit is huge….great boat for diving, entertaining, sunning, fishing, or whatever. 7
    6. cored construction, but thought of by Sea Ray was the "ice breaker hull"
    7. Engine space so large 2 full grown adults can pass between the engines….a dream to work on if you do your own maintenance
    8. a great sea boat…..soft easy ride, very dry and no worries about getting home when the seas turn ornery
    9. very flat running angle……you are never blind coming up on plane.
    10. 2 level swim platform……..the lower one is gigantic -full width go the transom and 4+ft. wide. Boarding ladder is a fixed welded ladder-not a telescoping one under a finger mashing trap door on the top of t he platform.

    Wishes? A few…..Cockpit heat and air… Enclosed hard top…about 200 more hp per engine…….but certainly not enough to give up a 450DA to get.

    Next favorite model is the 60/610DA……….has everything the 450DA does, but everything on the wish list too. It is just too big to use the way we use our 45..
  18. BrewCrew

    BrewCrew Member

    Apr 23, 2013
    Grand Haven, Michigan
    2001 460 DA
    Cummins 6CTA
    I really love and appreciate them all. My favorites are the swooping lines of the 2003-2008ish 420/440 and 480 dancers. They really set Sea Ray apart at that time. I hope to own a diesel powered one someday.
  19. Lake Erie Monster

    Lake Erie Monster New Member

    Feb 19, 2013
    Cleveland Ohio
    1976 SR-V 240. Bought site unseen
    302 Mercruiser
    The old late 70s-early 80's, 300 express's will always hold a special place in my heart. that what the kind of boat my father had and the first boat i learned to dock, the first big boat i soloed on, and the boat that made me a fan of sea rays. I have so many memories from "The Free Spirit" from taking girlfriends in high school out for rides to making it home in a nasty storm that came out of nowhere with my father looking like he did that sort of thing all the time, to even sneaking it out for a joyride one time. the biggest regret i have about that boat is that i had just bought a Bayliner when i stumbeled upon it forsale by pure chance and i there was nothing i could do......

    I also like the sedan birdges (27-30ft from the 80's), just something about being able to choose between upstairs or down stairs.
  20. Havana Shamrock

    Havana Shamrock Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor GOLD Sponsor

    Sep 9, 2008
    Long Island. N.Y.
    2005 500DB
    Furuno Tztouch2 12” MFD x2
    Furuno NXT radar
    Furuno Navpilot
    Honda 30HP
    Sea Doo 90 HP H.O.
    I really liked the 2000's DA's and the 480DB we liked the port lounger on our 320 the lines are beautiful she was pretty efficient and the cockpit was great for entertaining, easy to dock.
    The 480 has three staterooms, hardtop, with helm A/c and aft mounted Helm for easy docking also, large salon, galley up .you may notice I didn't mention our current boat, I like the looks, of the 36DB love the 1/2 hardtop, seperate shower, and visibility while in the salon, I consider this boat another transition boat if we don't move to a 420DB, 480DB then it will be down to a 290.350 SLX ,,

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