What is Roplene?
Since Triumph boats are the only ones you are likely to encounter that are made of Roplene, which is quite different than fiberglass, no review of Triumph boats can start without once again explaining what this unusual material is and how the boats are made. In a nutshell, Roplene construction is a patented dual-wall system made by a multi-rotational thermal molding process using a recyclable marine-grade polyethylene.Powdered polyethylene is loaded into a large aluminum mold, which is moved into a computer-controlled oven and heated to approximately 500 degrees and baked and monitored by computers. The gunwales, transom, hull and deck caps are all molded into a single seamless piece. Once completed, the hollow interior of the shell is filled with foam, far surpassing the U.S. Coast Guard requirements for both foam quality and volume, making it virtually unsinkable. One major difference between Roplene and conventional fiberglass hulls is that the Roplene itself will float. The result is a boat that, as Bubba proved, can be trailered at high-speed on concrete and asphalt highways on its own bottom and suffer only superficial scratches. All scratches can be easily repaired and buffed out.
Take a Bow
Starting forward, the 235 features a large bow to which you can add rails (add $635) and a bow pulpit with anchor roller (add $1,110) for easier anchoring with safety offshore. To keep the bow unobstructed when you are working a fish, cleats are pull-up style, and even the bow port and starboard nav light in one fitting pops down to stay out of the way. Moving back is the anchor locker. Drink holders are located up front for the riders and fishermen as well as large lockers that can double as cushioned bench seats. The 25 gallon (94.6L) storage boxes are easy to clean and have sturdy stainless lift rods. Super-duty grab rails mean anyone up front has plenty to hang on to in rough water conditions. A wrap-around bolster is offered as an option (add $1,423) as is a cushion set for the bow (add $473).
If you opt for the T-top, which we recommend (add $5,506), you get a fold-away bench seat in front of the center console, which sets up quickly and stores away neatly for more room to room up front. You’ll also get four fixed and two adjustable rocket launchers, outrigger mounts, spreader light and a dome light. A pair of 15' Taco Grand Slam outriggers are also on the options list (add $1,613 ea).Access to the stern is good, with enough room to move quickly when a fish dives under the boat and heads to the stern. Inside the center console is easy access to electrical connections, room to mount the optional stereo (add $736) and optional vacu-flush head w/ pump out (add $2,213). The head option also requires the freshwater option (add $646). The center console can be a great place to load a bunch of gear for an offshore run and features 72” overhead clearance.
Moving around to the helm, the heavy-duty acrylic windshield also offers sufficient visibility. Instrumentation on our test ride had the Yamaha digital gauges to go along with the Yamaha outboard. Standard gauges include speed, tach, volt and fuel gauges with plenty of room left for adding a flat screen display and a fish finder. No electronics are offered by Triumph so you’re free to buy whatever brand you choose, rather than the brand the manufacturer aligns itself with. Steering is Sea Star tilt hydraulic with stainless wheel and speed knob.
The helm has a deluxe seat with flip-up bolster for plenty of standing room when driving. Green acrylic accents around the dash add a nice touch of color. Behind the helm seat is the bait station so everyone in the cockpit can get to it. It’s a 45 gallon (170.3L) livewell system with aerator and high speed pickup.
Caprails are wide and ready for adding more trolling gear, such as downriggers, to the two flush mount rod holders already in each side. Underneath is room to store up to six 8 foot rods. The stern cockpit area leaves enough room to bait your lines and still have someone working a fish at the gunwale. There are dual 25 gallon (94.64L) fishboxes are on either side in the cockpit that are outfitted with diaphragm macerator pumps. The boxes are also insulated to keep your catch fresh. Lids are on stainless gas shocks for easy lifting.
Optional jump seats (add $976) in each corner set up quickly and fold completely flush under the gunwale when space is needed. In the center of the transom is a cutting board top with a convenient fish measuring scale molded in. Dual drink holders are molded in for the folks casting in the back. Flipping the center down, you get great access to the engine splash-well and a place to stow a dive ladder. Another 25 gallon (94.64L) storage box is in each corner of the stern.
Specs and Power
The 235 Center Console measures 23’8” (7.21 m) length overall with a beam of 8’10” (2.69 m). Her light-weight design puts her in at just 3,400 lbs. (1,542.2 kg) dry without the engine. She is rated for outboard engines up to 300-hp and carries 145 gallons (548.9L) of fuel for a great day offshore without worries. She draws 16 inches (40.64 cm) with the engine trimmed up so slipping into a flat in the bay should be easy.Equipped with a Yamaha F250 the 235 CC has an MSRP of $57,182.00. Switch over to a Mercury 225 XXL Optimax and you’re looking at $56,832.00.Triumph’s 235 Center Console proves that just because you are looking for a utilitarian design, doesn’t mean you have to settle for a boxy, clunky looking boat. If you are looking for a rig that is just as happy charging offshore as it is working near shore with the family on board, the 235CC deserves a closer look. She is practically indestructible, almost impossible to sink.
Lowest of Low-Maintenance Boats
If you are not into maintenance, compounding your fiberglass boat a couple of times a year, and protecting it from UV rays as much as possible, but rather you want a boat that can take care of itself, then a Triumph might be the answer. If you keep your boat in a place that has lots of flotsam and jetsam, commercial traffic, or a smoke-spewing electric plant nearby, then a Triumph might be a good bet. Soap and water and a hose can usually get it looking like new, while a fiberglass boat might show its age quickly in such circumstances. Twenty-four BoatTEST.com readers who own Triumph boats have taken the time to fill out “Reader Reports” [To access the “Readers’ Reports” click on the red button at the top of the page.] and the theme that comes through loud and clear in most of them is: put a hose on it, and forget it. (All but two reports were generally favorable, which is pretty good given how cantankerous some people can be.)
At one time Triumph boats had the reputation of being a low price-point boat. Those days, if they ever existed, are long gone. Today, Triumph boats are solidly in the mid range of pricing for a 23’ CC boat. They are equipped just as well as most top-tier brands, and Triumph expects to be paid for it. However, Roplene and Triumph boats are not for everyone. They do not have a shiny surface, like a new fiberglass boat does, unless you wax it and buff it regularly – which most of its owners have no interest in doing. On the other hand, Roplene does not oxidize like gel coat which gradually becomes dull and even chalky with oxidation if not properly cared for each year. You don’t have to worry about gel coat crazing or blisters or some other boat or piling rubbing up against your hull at a marina in a storm. If you are into low maintenance and fishing, we think a Triumph boat should be on your short list.
Test Result Highlights
- Top speed for the Triumph 235 CC (2010-) is 45.0 mph (72.4 kph), burning 21.7 gallons per hour (gph) or 82.13 liters per hour (lph).
- Best cruise for the Triumph 235 CC (2010-) is 31.8 mph (51.2 kph), and the boat gets 2.62 miles per gallon (mpg) or 1.11 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 342 miles (550.4 kilometers).
- Tested power is 1 x 250-hp Yamaha 4-Stroke.
Standard and Optional Features
|Washdown: Raw Water||Standard|
|Outlet: 12-Volt Acc||Standard|