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MB B52 23' Alpha vs. Axis T23 (or 2017-2019 LSV23)


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Hello,

I’m in the market for a new boat and am honing in on 3. I have a 5, 10 and 13 year old and as a single dad tend to take out other families so space and versatility is important. I also know the kids will get more into surfing as we go and I don’t want to upgrade again anytime soon. I’m considering the B52 23 Alpha, Axis T23 or a lightly used (2017-2019) LSV23. I like the simplicity of the Axis’ surf system but the MB has a better layout IMO. I’m worried about durability and a 3 year warranty with the MB vs. the 5 year with the Axis. 

Any feedback would be greatly appreciated. 

Thank you. 

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I don't have an Alpha, just a "classic" 2016 F22.  I have a friend who has had a 2015 T22, a 2017 LSV23 and now a 19 A22.  In short, they really are all fine boats.  From a wave perspective, I personally think my F22 beats all three of them. My friend would probably disagree, though ;-).  MB wave is harder and steeper where the Malibu/Axis wave is glassier, less steep and somewhat softer.  Wakeboard wake is different but not really better or worse between them - MB is steeper and has more lip where the Malibu/Axis is rampier and softer (probably easier on knees). Overall build quality and interior comfort and materials I'd give the nod to my F22 over the Axis boats (especially in terms of seating foam).  The Malibu was nicer than any of them in that regard.  Malibu makes very nice boats with lots of thoughtful details in the interior.  Nicer than my MB but I don't know about an Alpha.  Axis is more obviously their "budget" line and omits some of that stuff but you do still get their very well designed watersports hulls.

If I were you, I'd probably narrow down to MB or Malibu - the Axis just doesn't really offer anything over the MB, in my opinion. 

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My FIL has an 2017 axis and I hate the vinyl in that boat I think it will need to be replaced within the next few years. And the cushion padding is soft but it bottoms out quick. The piping in the vinyl is off by 2" between some seats. It looks like shit! I also have no idea why that damn boat alarms everytime the auto bilge kicks on. I love the wave it throws but I hate the interior. Also I prefer the Chevrolet engines in the Malibu/Axis boats.  But the MB wave is great and the boats are solid. My F22 is much smoother in rough water than his A22. Not sure how deep the water is you'll be surfing but I've read that the horizontal gate system boats make a better wave in shallower water. 

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Thank you, @BTown801. I'll be in the Willamette / Columbia rivers here in Portland which will usually be 30-50 feet of water so depth shouldn't be much of an issue. We do get some chop on the rivers though so I like the idea of a smoother ride in the water. 

Does anybody have opinions on he 400 vs. 450 motors? We're at sea level in Portland but I do go to Tahoe for a week every year which is 6,200 feet. Thanks!

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Wave is totally surfable for beginners, kids, whatever.  You don't have to fill everything up if you want a smaller wave.  In my experience, though, a strong wave just makes it easier or everybody.

Regarding Tahoe, I can tell you that we spend 10+ days boating there every summer (just got back from a 9 day trip and going for another 5 soon).  We have the 400 in our 16 F22 and have zero problems at that elevation.  We boat with a FULL load of people when we cruise to Skunk Habor, Sunnyside, Emerald Bay, Zephyr Cove, etc. (10 - 14 people) and the boat easily gets up to speed and cruises, and will run full 5400 rpm WOT if we want to.  We surf a bit lighter up there than normal but the boat still produces a phenomenal wave and we have plenty of power with a 15X14.25 x .150 cup (2247 ACME) prop.  I don't know how much difference a 450 would make up there but it certainly wouldn't hurt.

 

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As The Edge said in another thread, make sure you really read through both warranties and understand what’s actually covered and what’s not. Not all warranties are created equally. Don’t assume one is better than another just because it has a longer timeframe. 

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