It’s a New Bottom, Too
Designer Lou Codega created an all-new boat when he drew the Regulator 28 FS, although he used the company’s 26 as an inspiration. During its 21-year life, the 26 FS has become Regulator’s most popular boat – more than 1,500 have been built, accounting for about 30% of Regulator’s total sales. The 26 FS carries its twin outboards on a bracket; when it was designed almost a generation ago, most boats did – at that time the integrated transom bracket was a newfangled design.
Codega said that a transom bracket “takes full advantage of the sharp bow entry and deep-V hull design.” The new boat rides on a classic 24-degree deadrise V-hull, a configuration that produces a soft ride (well, relatively soft, given the speeds the boats achieve) and good tracking. Codega predicted the 28 FS will reach a top speed “in excess of 60 mph [96.6 kph] while offering extraordinary efficiencies.” We haven’t tested the boat, so can’t comment – but 60 mph is pretty fast. Regulator didn’t have performance data at press time, either.
Why a Bracket?
Hanging the outboards on a bracket rather than on the transom has advantages, especially at high speeds; that’s why many outboard-powered raceboats use them. Moving the engines away from the hull improves the water flow to the propellers, which lets folks looking for ultimate speeds mount the engines a little higher to reduce resistance. It gives the props a little extra leverage to affect trim, and allows them to drag through the water when the boat’s wave-jumping, thereby maintaining thrust for more of the time the boat’s airborne. (Some outdrive-powered raceboats mount their drives on extension boxes to achieve the same results.)
We don’t know if Regulator tinkered with engine height or other factors to squeeze maximum speed from the twin 300 Yamahas – but beside racers nobody is more speed-obsessed on the water than fishermen. They want to get out to the fish as fast as possible to spend as much time as they can with baits in the water. Tournament fishermen are even more crazy about this, and we suspect they are some of Regulator’s best customers: The boats are not cheap (MSRP of the 28 FS is $159,995), and appeal to those for whom fishing isn’t just a pastime, but an obsession.
The only reason for a boat like the Regulator 28 FS to exist is to fish, so all its vital components are there strictly to get more fish in the boat or alongside so they can be tagged. The sole is flush, so no tripping as you move around chasing a fish. Passage around the console is ample, thanks to the boat’s 9’5” beam. All horizontal surfaces, including the forward seats, have molded non-skid. (Yes, there are cushions.) The console has 6’6” of headroom inside, and comes with an electric toilet and 6-gal. holding tank.
Although Regulator equips the 28 FS pretty well as standard, there are some options almost every buyer will want. Unfortunately, at press time we weren’t able to get prices for each one – suffice it to say a well-rigged 28 FS, without electronics, will run you around $170,000, or maybe a bit more.Everyone will want a T-top. The Regulator version includes an electronics box, spreader lights, LED work lights and outrigger bases. You can have the underside gel-coated to match the hull, if you’ve opted for a custom color (anything but white). A rocket launcher on the top is also extra. Outrigger options are Lee 18-footers or telescoping 16s, both with laydown mounts.
A windlass is optional, either in conjunction with a pulpit or simple bow roller; in either case it includes chain, rope and anchor. You might think a windlass is overkill on a boat like this, but many fishermen anchor in deep water and cast or drift baits; when it’s time to get underway, the windlass will be very welcome. And, of course, everyone will want a canvas enclosure to wrap the T-top.
Regulator is known for building excellent boats that satisfy the most demanding fisherman. They are also near the top of the price range, and the 28 FS is no exception. You don’t have to spend $160,000+ to get a nice 28-foot fishing boat; there are plenty around for tens of thousands less. On the other hand, you don’t have to buy a $100,000 European car, either, when a family sedan will get you there just as well. But if you have the money, why not? It’s the difference between having something adequate and something really nice.If you can avoid catching big-boat-itis, the 28 FS will be boat enough for many years, so you can amortize the cost down from the stratosphere. If we knew when we were young what we know now, we’d have bought a Rolex watch, Leica camera and Mercedes sedan, and would still be using them long after the final payment was sent. That’s how you should think of the Regulator 28 FS, or any top-flight boat. Buy it, use it, enjoy it and keep it – when it’s paid for, you’ll still have years of use left.(By the way, the 28 makes a great day boat for just taking friends out for a cruise and an on-board picnic.)
Standard and Optional Features
|Washdown: Raw Water||Standard|
Full Warranty Information on this brand coming soon!