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Review: Rinker Captiva 186 Fish & Ski OB

A boat for those who want the comfort and performance of a bowrider while providing versatility for anglers.

With the successful 2012 launch of the first Rinker outboards in more than 20 years came a wave of requests for a fishing package. In response, the company has introduced the Captiva 186 Fish & Ski to satisfy the needs of family boaters who want the comfort and performance of a bowrider while providing versatility for anglers.

Featuring sleek styling, the 186 F&S OB (also available as an I/O) announces its fishing DNA from a distance with a standard bow-mounted Minn Kota trolling motor, and when you get up close, you’ll notice a single pedestal seat receiver in the bow and two at the stern.

Conversion from sport boat to fishing machine is a snap. Simply remove and stow bow cushions, place the included pedestal mount in place and relocate one of the two aft cockpit seats. To fish from the rear deck, the other cockpit seat quickly mounts atop a second pedestal mount. Inside the in-floor locker, you’ll find plenty of dedicated rod storage to keep your equipment safe and always within reach.

On the water, the 186 cruises smooth and easy, and feels solid when under way. Crisp handling and effortless full turns at speed reveal the thought and engineering put into the hull design. Even at lower horsepower (standard power is a 90-hp Yamaha outboard), this boat feels quick and agile.

Rated at up to 150 horsepower, there are plenty of options in between to dial in the sweet spot depending on how you will use the boat — loaded up with family and friends ready for tubing, or you and a buddy out on the lake at sunup. All things considered, it seems like the 115-horsepower Yamaha on the test boat was right on target, planing quickly with two adults on board and reaching just over 40 miles per our at wide-open throttle.

The cockpit has an interesting layout that’s functional for both sport boat and fishing mode. The rear area has what amounts to two removable seats with backrests on each side and a bench in the center. The seats convert easily into fishing pedestals either in the bow, on the rear deck or in their original location. Removing the middle bench cushion provides access to an oversized cooler, and the entire area is covered in a non-skid surface to make it easy to move around the boat when fighting fish. Parents will appreciate the deep cockpit for safety, and the full cockpit liner, which will clean up a breeze at the end of the day.

In the I/O version, there’s a rear sun pad that can be removed (again with a non-skid surface underneath) to make room for pedestal seats on either side and provide access to an aerated livewell. You’ll also find a telescoping boarding ladder at the rear swim platform, in both the OB and I/O models.

Color theme options are striking, with six different accents to choose from below the rub rail, including Blast Blue, Chili Red and Dark Platinum. Matching upholstery complements the selected exterior hue. The color theme is even carried through to a painted, single-axle EZ Loader trailer, which is included in the price.

Other standard features include a Sony stereo with CD player, sport steering wheel, stainless-steel ski tow eye, and –£turned titanium–§ dash and helm accents.

f you’re looking for a great combination of family sport boat and tough fishing machine, check out the all-new Rinker Captiva 186 Fish & Ski.

Rinker Captiva 186 Fish & Ski OB
Length Overall: 18 feet, 8 inches
Beam: 7 feet, 4 inches
Draft (drive up): 1 foot, 4 inches
Dry Weight: 1,750 pounds
Fuel Capacity: 26 gallons
Power: 90-hp Yamaha F90XA
Base Price: $28,825

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