Lund is a company that specializes in manufacturing fishing boats from both aluminum and fiberglass.
They are very popular in the American Midwest and Canada and are generally seen as a premium brand.
How good are they?
Here’s How Reliable and Good Lund Boats are:
Lund Boats are more expensive than most of their competitors’ boats, and most owners feel the boats are worth it. They are built from quality materials, backed up with a strong warranty. Their durability has been proven in fresh and saltwater, on rivers, lakes, and the sea. They have earned their status as a premium brand.
A Brief History of Lund Boats
The company traces its roots to 1948 (some sources say 1947) when G. Howard Lund created a prototype aluminum fishing boat in Minnesota.
Alumacraft was already having success in manufacturing aluminum fishing boats. The story is, he drove around with the boat on top of his car until a boat salesman noticed it.
This salesman worked for the Inland Marine Corporation, and he asked Lund for 50 more aluminum boats. Lund set up a facility in New York Mills, Minnesota, in the heart of the inland fishing country and began producing in earnest.
They proved to be popular, and the orders continued, and the company grew.
In 1961, the company was re-incorporated as the Lund Metal Craft company and shortly afterward expanded into fiberglass manufacturing. Later they acquired the Shell Lake Boat Company and expanded from fishing to include family recreation.
The 1970s saw the introduction of several iconic models like the Mr. Pike and Tyee and expanded the offshore line with 22-foot cuddy cabins and even some sailboats.
In the 1980s, Lund closed the Shell Boat facility, where their fiberglass operations concentrated on their aluminum offerings. In the 1990s, they expanded into the pontoon boat market.
In 2000, Lund was inducted into the Minnesota Fishing Hall of Fame. G. Howard Lund died in 2003.
In 2004, the Brunswick Corporation acquired the company, and in 2008 the company re-entered the fiberglass boat market.
Today, the company is going strong, building a reputation for quality and durability for over seven decades.
How Reliable Are Lund Boats?
Lund is generally seen as a premium aluminum brand, and they are more expensive than most aluminum boats, but most owners seem to feel they are worth it.
Lund injects high-quality closed-cell foam into all of their boats for flotation even when there is significant damage to the hull. This ensures you will make it home in almost any circumstances that you take your Lund into.
Even their detractors appreciate the fit and finish. They use superior electronics, and their wiring is excellent.
Performance is also where Lunds are generally seen to be superior to other similar brands on the market. The stability of the ride, the speed, and the handling are all usually praised by their owners.
Another strong factor Lund owners point out is the layout. There is no “dead space” when it comes to being set up for fishing in particular.
How Durable Are Lund Boats?
All of the Lunds are riveted rather than welded.
There is a general perception that welding makes superior seams, but most Lund owners on boating and fishing forums report no problems with their riveting.
This is attributed to the quality of the construction process and the oversight in manufacturing. Some owners also feel that the advantage of welded versus riveted is overstated or simply wrong and that their experience backs this up.
The debate is interesting, with partisans on both sides claiming to have science on their sides. Now that Crestliners (welded) are made in the Lund (riveted) plant, the debate among sales reps for these lines and methods has calmed down, though owners still debate it extensively on forums.
Lund advertises the higher quality of the materials they use. Even though the hull is a bit thinner than other makers, they say the grade of aluminum is higher, and it is better supported by their full-length and closely-spaced I-beam construction.
There are some reports of problems with their transoms made from a composite, but Lund covers them with a lifetime warranty.
What About Older Lund Boats?
Older Lunds are also regarded to have been constructed with quality workmanship and materials.
There are always changes and improvements over time, but Lund is perceived as a leader and developmental edge.
Their iconic lines from the 1970s and 1980s are still highly regarded, and some of them can command top prices if they are in good condition.
Many buyers on forums report difficulty buying older models, as they are usually not on the market long before they are purchased. This is more often the case in the mid-west than in other parts of the United States, but it does speak to the reputation they have developed for durability over the years.
It should be pointed out that some commenters on forums had noticed a decline in quality shortly after Brunswick purchased the company.
This drop in quality was not in the hull construction but rather finished details like seats and carpet. These particular complaints seemed to cease around 2012.
Do They Still Make Parts For Older Models?
There are still a lot of older for older Lunds available.
Given that their manufacturing plant has never moved and many of the dealers in their network have been involved with Lund for many decades, it can be surprisingly easy to track down parts.
Even those that are no longer made can sometimes be obtained by working with dealers’ networks, particularly those in the mid-West. Over time, their shops tend to accumulate old parts.
There also online retailers that sell OEM parts for Lunds, such as greatlakesskipper.com.
While there is no forum specifically dedicated to Lund boats, several forums have Lund subforums, such as In-depth Outdoors, and owners exchange information here. It can be a resource to find particularly difficult parts.
Finally, there is a Lund Boat Owners Facebook group, and they may help locate obscure parts.
What Are Typical Problems With Lund Boats?
Because their models are riveted rather than welded, some Lund boats can develop leaks.
Repairing them can be difficult, though it usually means drilling them out and replacing them with a larger rivet.
The relative thinness of the aluminum on many of their models has caused some problems, as they are more prone to dents and damage.
The wooden floorboards can rot out as water gets into them over time, though their lifetime warranty covers this.
For a more in-depth examination of common problems with Lund Boats, please see our companion article on the subject here!
How Long Do Lund Boats Last Compared To Similar Brands?
The general perception is that Lunds will last for a very long time, particularly in other aluminum brands.
Being constructed with rivets has not seemed to affect the longevity of the average Lund boat adversely.
“My uncle bought a 16.5 deep hull Lund boat with a windshield back a year or two before I was born (mid 60’s). The boat looks very much like today’s Tyee… It had no bilge pumps, but it never leaked water, so the only water drained when the plug was pulled water taken over the side or rainwater. After 30 years… last I heard, it still had its original paint job.”
[Source: Walleye Central]
Even on those that have problems with rivets breaking, they say they are easy to fix (particularly in comparison to fixing a cracked weld).
Do Lund Boats Hold Their Value?
Although some attribute this to their higher initial price point, Lund boats have a reputation for holding their value.
A 1775 Impact Sport made in 2015 sold new for $29,725 in that year. This boat has a current average resale value of $22,900. This is a depreciation of 23%, which is very good for about 5 years.
Looking at their iconic 1900 Tyee, it sold new in 2015 for $46,846. Currently, that boat has an average resale value of $35,660, a depreciation of 24%. Again, that is very favorable.
Checking most of their models yields similar numbers, so it is safe to say that Lund boats hold their value well, and the rate of depreciation shows that it is not just due to their higher cost.
Are Lund Boats Still Being Made?
Lund boats are still being made in the place they always have been, in New York Mills, Minnesota.
Their warranty is a lifetime for the seams, transom, flooring, and three-year stem to stern. They range in price from a $1,000 Jon boat to the 2175 Pro V Limited, which starts at $97,345.
While they make many models, most of them are based on their straightforward fishing boat design. The Tyee is their prototypical design.
There are lively debates online about the various brand of aluminum boat manufacturers.
The name of Lund is always brought up, and while there are a few detractors of the brand and construction method (rivets) in general, most owners are pleased with their boats.
Lund is a premium brand, but the majority of owners feel that, in this case, you are getting what you pay for.