Our side gig here at BOE Marine is RC Boats. And we know a lot about them. We offer them for sale simply due to our love for the hobby, and hope to bring this joy to our great boating customers. With that said, the various levels of quality found in RC Boats can vary significantly. Hopefully this brief article can help you make the best decision.
If you have shopped for a RC Boat you've probably found the prices and claims are all over the board. One 30" boat on one site says it will do 50MPH and costs $120, while another 30" boat on another site says it will go 35MPH and costs $600. We've found performance claims to be hit or miss. Speeds are often used to attract buyers. A faster boat must be better right? Often you can find videos on Youtube about performance and can see for yourself how well they run. Generally speaking, the higher the kV of the motor, or the higher the battery voltage, the faster the boat will go.
Next is quality of materials. A "hobby quality" boat, like the ProBoats we carry, are made of high quality materials. They are more durable. The plastic is not as brittle. Stainless steel will actually last in the elements. Electrical connectors can handle getting wet. The boats from places like Amazon are the comnplete opposite, and are very cheaply made. Parts will crack, bend and corrode easily.
Serviceability is the next major difference. Hobby Quality boats have a full array of replacement parts. So if you break a rudder, you can buy a new rudder. If you fry a motor, you can buy a new one. You will get many years of operation out of these boats for that very reason. On the other hand, if you break a rudder on your amazon boat from running over a stick, your boat is junk. A replacement rudder is not available in most cases. So you may have saved a few bucks when you bought it, but now it is trash.
Finally, support and warranty. If you can't get your transmitter to connect on your Amazon boat, what are you going to do? You can't call Amazon. I guess you can google it to see if anybody else has gifured out how to fix it. When you have a Hobby Quality boat you can call your dealer, or the manufacturer. People with real knowledge of these boats will be on the other end of the phone to get you going. If somethign does break within the warranty period, you can have it replaced for free. Basically, if you want to use your new boat multiple times over the years then you'll want a Hobby Quality boat such as those offered by us from Pro Boat. If you just want to use one once or twice for the novelty of it, then a cheap one from Amazon might be the ticket.