Boat Review by: Rick Layzell
Imagine dreaming of an 18’ 6” fishing machine built by a 60 ++ year old trusted Canadian brand that had everything you could ever want for your time on the water. Now open your eyes and go take a very long look at the Princecraft Platinum SE 186. Your dream boat is sexy on the outside, beautifully appointed on the inside and she is set up to fish as much as you can dream.
The high gloss exterior is crafted using high solids urethane paint and is treated with a great looking decal package and raised Princecraft logo. All anglers will appreciate the double reverse chine hull design which noticeably improves stability when two or more anglers are on one side of the boat landing or netting a fish. The location of the interior coaming pads was thoughtfully done and will also be appreciated during these moments.
The Platinum SE 186 is loaded with tons of standard fish friendly features. There are 6 seat base locations to choose from, an in floor lockable rod organizer for six 7’ rods and a lockable storage compartment in both side panels of the cockpit. There are 17 gallon (64 L) livewells in BOTH the bow and stern casting decks. Both livewells feature the Pro Flo Plus, aerated electric fill system with intermittent re-circulation, overflow protection, remote control thru hull drains, lighting, anti-spill covers, insulated lids and a protection filter on the filler pump.
Our test boat featured the multi-function Simrad Go7 screen with touch screen, fish finder, down scan imaging and GPS functionalities. The bow casting deck was highlighted with a Minn Kota 70 PD V2 trolling motor with iPilot.
With all her fishing features Princecraft still paid attention to creature comforts. Both deluxe convertible seats use no pinch hinge designs and the captain’s seat has a built-in heating feature. The raised bow casting deck features an anchor locker, multiple extendable cargo nets, a deep cycle battery compartment, a generously sized self-draining ice chest and an additional gear storage compartment. The aft raised casting platform was highlighted with additional battery storage, a pair of fold down jump seats, additional storage and a uniquely designed location for storage of the bimini top.
The Platinum SE 186 is a very capable performer with the proven Mercury 150 XL on her stern. Loaded with a full 140 L tank of fuel we jumped on plane in 3.83 seconds and flew quickly to a top speed of 47.7 MPH – I do think she’s capable of a little more though as our max RPM on test day was only 5,280. Cruising at a variety of speeds was effortless (the Panther XPS power steering system is an awesome option) and we cruised at both 29.3 & 21.5 MPH.
There are a lot of choices in the critical 17 – 19’ fishing boat game. If you’re looking for a great performer, backed by a Canadian brand that understands your needs and has been around for a long time then be sure to take a long look at the Princecraft Platinum SE 186.
|Length:||18' 6"||5.6 m|
|Dry weight:||1,651 lbs||748 kg|
|Draft:||2.75 feet||83 cm|
|Fuel Capacity:||37 US gals||140 L|
|Base Engine / Drive:||Mercury 150 XL|
|Engine HP:||175 Max|