Offshore Motoryacht Newsletter - 03/18/2009
Offshore Motoryacht Newsletter March 18, 2009 If you cannot view the newsletter, click here. Tests You Can Trust

New Boats & Video Reviews

- Bayliner 340 Cruiser
- Formula 400 Super Sport
- Four Winns V358
- Grand Banks Eastbay 55SX

Also Inside:
- Meridian 341 Tested: A Mini MY
- Veteran Yachtsman Repowers
- Expedition Yacht of the Future
- Retro-Fit Joystick Coming from ZF
- SeaKey Can Save Your Boat
- Work from Your Boat with KVH
- Used Boat Prices Drop
- USCG Releases Report
- BoatTrader has E-Newsletter
- Is Your Boat Infected?
- Are You a Pirate?
- Are You a Boat Dealer?
- Capt. Steve's Weekly Lesson
Ducky Award Winner

Meridian 341 Tested:
A Mini Motoryacht

Meridian 341
Almost 36’ LOA, the 341 Meridian is a small cruiser
with big ideas.

The 341 Meridian is a sedan which has aspirations of being a mini motoryacht. The builder says it is designed for people who want to do extended cruising, and if it is your dream to someday own a large motoryacht, this is a fine place to start. There are not many true cruising boats in this size range, so you owe it to yourself to carefully check out this boat. Thirty-five feet is a bit stubby for a cruising boat and that is why boats in this range often have a case of the uglies.  Yet, somehow Meridian’s naval architects have managed to draw a 35’ 10” sedan bridge cruiser that doesn’t offend the eye. And packed into this boat are more accommodations and utility than one usually finds on these size boats. One of the most demanding captains we know of is Capt. Steve, so we asked him to test the Meridian and give us a report --

See video test of Meridian 341 --
See more tests of Meridian Yachts --

cross ruler

Boat Tests & Reviews

Bayliner 340 Cruiser

Bayliner 340 CruiserThe 340 Cruiser comes with a few new features for 2009, like a choice of interior configurations with standard fixed berth or optional open lounge layout, a private aft cabin separated by a solid bulkhead and door, and a Northstar 550 color chartplotter/GPS package. Another feature is the continuation of the new look for Bayliner. This isn’t your father's Bayliner anymore.  Take a look at the Bayliner 340 Cruiser.

Formula 400 Super Sport

Formula 400 Super Sport

Formula has made numerous changes with the latest version of the 400 Super Sport. The most recognizable is the change from a stern trunk to a multi-purpose sunpad that converts to a lounger where you can sit back, and relax while watching the action off the stern. Optional low-maintenance teak-grained vinyl decking on the swim platform and cockpit sole enhance the looks while not creating a back-breaking task to maintain. The helm sports a silver, burl or wood finish and the company has redesigned the galley for more function and better utilization of space.  Take a tour through Formula's 400 Super Sport.

Four Winns V358

Four Winns H310

If you are ready for the long weekends aboard an express cruiser and you don’t want to skimp on style and comfort, the V358 is fast becoming a yacht of choice to take you to your favorite get-away. She has all the comforts, style, and performance expected from Four Winns.  Four Winns offers many engine options from several companies so you can have a real choice here to find the right power for your application.   Join Captain Rob on his boat test of the Four Winns V358. 

Grand Banks Eastbay 55SX

Grandbanks Grand Banks has built in more luxury and room for entertainment and cruising  with the 55SX. For the single handers, there is now a side entry door for the helmsman. There are additional changes at the helm which make it more comfortable for long cruises, such as the plush captain’s chair and powered sunroof. The 55SX features two cabins and two heads as the standard layout, but is also available with three cabins.  Take a look at Eastbay 55 SX.

cross ruler

Repower News

Veteran Yachtsman
Repowers 40’ SF with Yanmar

40' Tollycraft Yanmar 6BY2-260
This 1990 40’ Tollycraft sistership was one of just a handful built before closing down in 1996. The 6-cylinder Yanmar 6BY2-260 diesels replaced twin 454 Mag 340-hp gas engines.

As you read this (on Wednesday March 18) two Yanmar 6BY2 260-hp diesels are being lowered into the engine room of a 19-year old Tollycraft at Collins Marine in Bethel Island, California. This is the latest project for a man who has sailed across the Pacific and ranged from Panama to Alaska in powerboats of all kinds. His name is Lee Simpson and he loves living aboard and cruising wherever he may be – and he does it for less money than most people. The latest boat and one that he is repowering is a  40’ Tollycraft. To find out more about this exciting repower project-- step on it. 

Watch Captain Rob's video about the 6BY 260.

cross ruler

Doral News

Doral Alegria Best
Performer In Class

Doral Alegria
At 45’3” LOA and 30,000 lbs. displacement, Doral’s Alegria powered by twin 435-hp IPS 600 diesels has best overall performance in her class.

Doral has tested more engine combinations in their Alegria than most any other builder in a boat this size. With a top speed of 41 mph this express cruiser is hard to beat. More important, the boat’s best cruise is at 30.5 mph where she gets slightly over one mile per gallon. The Alegria with IPS has joystick steering at low speeds making docking easy and fun. But the real story with this boat is the incredible attention to detail and the extensive use of wood below which gives the interior a warm and cozy yacht feel. And she is beautiful-- blending European styling with North American functionality. For more information --

See test videos of the Alegria -- Price Quote
See tests of all Doral boats --

cross ruler

New Design

Expedition Motoryacht of the Future

expedition yacht
This double “M” hull that is 33’ wide and 65’ long may well be the wave of the future for expedition cruisers and long range motoryachts.

They won’t fit behind houses in Ft. Lauderdale, but that’s a good thing because this design is intended for people who want to go places, lots of them, and in virtually any kind of weather. Readers might recall the article we published a fortnight ago about “Darth Vader’s” latest. Well, this is that boat’s recreational little sister. If you have something against catamarans, forget it because this design is beyond that. She is intended to go 45 knots WOT, but we’d like to see her go 20 knots and sip fuel. She has four staterooms below, crew quarters, plus a 30’ wide main salon. And that’s just the beginning. To read all about her-- pamper your mouse.

cross ruler

ZF News

Retrofit Joystick
Coming from ZF

ZF makes the fly-by-wire control systems for all of its transmissions and pod drives.

If you are planning to buy a new diesel-powered boat that has ZF marine gears this spring, you can have it fitted with ZF’s new Joystick Maneuvering System (JMS).  Viking, Tiara, and MasterCraft are already offering the system on some of their models. New boats at dealerships or in process at the factory can have the JMS installed or retro-fitted, according to a ZF spokesman. Moreover we’re told that ZF plans to offer a JMS retrofit for the aftermarket as early as this fall. To find out more about what is happening-- tweak your joymouse. 

Request more information.

Charter News

Discount on 101'
Megayacht Charter

Discount on Megayacht Charter
The new Hargrave Seafarer is a four stateroom boat
for charter on the eastern U.S. seaboard.

Recently we took a special video look at the new 101’ Seafarer built by Hargrave and now she is ready for charter. The boat is available from now until July anywhere from the Bahamas to Newport, RI. She comes with a crew of four, including stew and chef. The folks at Hargrave, who are handling her charter, tell us that the owner is giving $4000 off on the APA (advance provision allowance). She was designed for world cruising and has all of the amenities a vessel this size should have. Find out more information and her charter rate --

See BoatTEST video of Seafarer --

See BoatTEST videos of all Hargrave boats --


Larson Banner


Cruisers Yachts Banner



MasterCraft Banner


yamaha pwc
cross ruler

Safety Tip

SeaKey Can Save Your Boat (and YOU!)

The SeaKey system uses gps, satellite communications and cell service to alert authorities of the exact location of your boat.

The SeaKey safety system was first introduced in 2002 and is now installed in over 10,000 boats. This proven system is primarily directed at boater safety and boat security. Not only can you send an SOS at the touch of a button, but the system also tracks the boat in case of theft. It’s like “On Star” in automobiles, but it has far more uses, including keeping track of your kids when they use your boat, and knowing where your captain really is.  Read all about this incredible safety device--

See video about SeaKey. 


Work From Your Boat With KVH Broadband

KVH Broadband
Inmarsat service now covers the world
which means businessmen
can work from their boats.

Recently Inmarsat launched its newest I-4 satellite and now it has activated broadband service for mariners using KVH TracPhone FB500 and FB250. This means that businessmen can work from their yachts and stay in touch with the rest of the planet with both phone and broadband Internet service. Because of Inmarsat’s limited capacity, connection charges are not cheap. You can pay for connection by the minute, by kbs, or with a monthly subscription fee of $3300. Find out more -- 

See BoatTEST video about KVH Sat TV --

BoatTEST News

Used Boat Prices Drop with Recession

Used boat prices have fallen and now might be a good time to check classified listings.

Used boat prices are dropping just like new boat prices. If you have been thinking about buying a used boat but haven’t checked the prices in a few months, then we invite you to take a look now. To make it easier for you, now imports over 100,000 listings from so that you can check them out right on Likewise, BoatTEST’s videos and reviews can be accessed right on participating dealers’ listings on Buying opportunities have never been better for both new and used boats -- check out prices.

Boating Safety

USCG Releases
Report on Accident

Cooper's 21
NFL player Marquis Cooper’s 21’ center console was towed to the Bay Pines boat ramp for inspection.

Through the Freedom of Information Act the Associated Press has been able to obtain a 23-page USCG report on the accident that took the lives of three men, two of whom were NFL players, recently in the waters off of Clearwater, Florida. The report details the effects of hypothermia and the importance of filing a float plan. New information has come to light, but the USCG cautions that hypothermia may have affected the memory of Nick Schuyler, the lone survivor. For the AP report --

Read BoatTEST report “Beware the Angry Sea” --

Industry News

Has E-Newsletter

Boat Trader  Yacht Trader
Boat Trader and Yacht Trader publications are online and now have a newsletter.

In case you haven’t noticed, virtually everyone in the marine business is producing e-newsletters these days and our partners at joined the party. Trader currently has over 115,000 new and used boat listings. Their monthly newsletter is packed full of boats for sale, boating tips, boat show dates, news, and video tests from BoatTEST. Best of all the Trader e-newsletter is free.
To sign up now --

Maintenance Tip

Is Your Boat Infected with Mold Spores?

Mold remediation need not be a big chore if you catch it early and regularly.

The last several years mold remediation in houses has blossomed into a multi-million dollar business and has kept many lawyers out of the soup kitchens. We’ve all lived with mold all of our lives, but it is now an environmental flavor of the month, so you’d better not be caught with your spores down. Not only does mold smell bad, it can be bad for your health and degrade the finish of your boat costing you hundred of dollars when you go to sell it. Capt. Pauley will give you the quick cure -- wipe your mouse.

Member Services

Boat Pirate?

captain Jack Sparrow
Thar’s easy pickins for the bold this year if you know where to look. Each week BoatTEST’s Member Services matches up swashbucklers with boats that is nothing short of piracy.

Looking for a new or used boat but afraid you might not be getting the best deal? Smart buyers know that the best way to come out on a boat is to buy it right. There has never been a better time to buy than today. Simply let know what you are looking for and we’ll have dealers calling you with deals. Just sit back and wait for the phone to ring. Sign up here --

Boat Dealers ONLY

Are YOU A Boat Dealer?

Boat Trader
Lincoln almost became a boat dealer upon his return from New Orleans to Illinois by boat as a young man. Unfortunately, a dearth of available product forced him to open a dry goods store instead.

If you are a boat dealer looking for customers, might have some for you. All you have to do is check the list of boats our members are looking for to see if they want what you happen to have in stock. You might get lucky --

cross ruler

Capt. Steve's Lesson #28

How to Read Charts
and Plot Your Position

Capt. Steve

Capt. Steve explains a grid system and how to read lines
of latitude and longitude to help find a location.

This week Capt. Steve goes over fourteen new lessons and guidelines on reading charts and how to plot an exact position by using degrees, minutes and tenths of minutes to tell anyone exactly where you are in the world. If you’re going to be out in the open ocean it’s important to learn how to read charts for your own safety and to help give direction to other boaters, as well as your coordinates should an emergency arise. Capt. Steve also suggests getting into the habit of checking the Local Notice to Mariners which the Coast Guard publishes to report any changes or deficiencies in aids to navigation. The videos presented this week are part of Capt. Steve’s USCG-approved boating course called “Smart Boating.” Watch Capt. Steve's video boating lessons every week on

To view this week’s lessons --

To view past lessons --

cross ruler

Ducky Award Winner

whats going on here?

First Place
"For my third wish, I want to spend my life on a yacht, surrounded by beautiful women." - J. Giles

Second Place
"Our boat is so user-friendly that even a dummy can operate it." - K. Merritt

Honorable (almost) Mention
"That's one small stern for France -- and one giant leap for mannequins." - D. Mead

What's Going on Here?


You write the caption! Will you win the coveted "Ducky Award" for best caption?

Simply fill in your caption and you may get lucky -- quack here.

Please send all submissions by 3/22/09.


We Need Reader HELP!

If you have a picture that you think needs some explanation by our witty and clever readers, please send it to:

cross ruler, LLC
51 Bank Street, Suite 2A
Stamford, CT 06901