New Cabo 52 Flybridge // Boat Crashes// Offshore Boat Handling - 07/09/2009
Offshore Motoryacht Newsletter July 8, 2009 If you cannot view the newsletter, click here. Tests You Can Trust
- New Cabo 52 Flybridge
- Volvo Plans Hydrogen Gens
- Sunseeker Predator 64
- Regal 44 SC Ranks #1
- Grand Banks 59 Aleutian
- Hydra-Sports 4100 SF
- Cruisers Yachts 447
- Yanmar Repower
- Sea Trials for USS NY
- Not All Engine Oil Is the Same
- Four Winns V338
- Fleming 65 Goes to Canal
- Garmin GPSMAP 440
- Monaco Classic Week
- Serious Marine Cleaner
- Selene Develops New Stern
- Angler Gets Record Irish Shark
- Readers' News & Submissions
- 23 Race Boat Crashes
- Capt. Steve's Weekly Lesson
Ducky Award Winner

New Cabo 52 Flybridge Challenges the Big Boys

Cabo 52 Flybridge Convertible
The new Cabo 52 has 3 staterooms, a 17’9” beam, carries 1400 gal. of fuel, weighs 50,000 lbs. and will make life difficult for Bertram, Hatteras and Viking battlewagons.

Let’s cut to the chase – Cabo has gotten to where it is today by building better boats than its cheap competition, and lower-priced boats than its high-quality competition. Cabo builds the important things right, yet does not lavish money on fine-yacht grade joiner work, gadgets, complex systems, re-inventing the wheel, and expensive marketing eyewash. What you see is what you get, and if you don’t see it, chances are it’s not there. For the last five years or so Cabo has given Bertram and Viking fits at the small end of their lines, and now it takes on the big battlewagons of the big three – Bertram, Hatteras and Viking. To find out more about the newest entry to the heavyweight navy --

cross ruler

New Product Breakthrough

Volvo Penta Plans Hydrogen
Generators for Boats -- 
-- Kiss Diesel and Gas
Generators Good-bye!

 Volvo Hydrogen Generators
Volvo Penta’s new system “reforms” hydrocarbons creating hydrogen which creates electrical current in a “power cell stack.” No noise, vibration, CO, or worries --

Next month a Volvo Penta subsidiary will hire around 60 people in an entirely new plant in Gothenburg, Sweden to manufacturer an environmentally friendly electrical power generator for powerboats and over-the-road trucks. The new system will use hydrogen and it will replace diesel generating systems putting out from 5 kw to 15 kw. That means it will be applicable to powerboats from about 25’ to 45’ – the heart of the diesel and gas generator market for companies such as Onan, Westerbeke and Kohler. The new system appears to have few, if any, moving parts and will therefore eliminate the annoying noise and vibration that current diesel-powered generators produce. Volvo says the emissions are a big improvement over current diesel generation technology. The big news here is that the new Volvo system does not have to wait for hydrogen distribution “stations” to be set up around the country, as its new unit will simply make its own hydrogen gas out of conventional fuels, including ethanol, biomass, alcohol, biodiesel. For more on this exciting development -- shock your mouse

Research our tests of Volvo engines

cross ruler

New Boat

New Sunseeker Predator 64:
She's Designed with Attitude

 Sunseeker Predator 64
Looks pretty doesn’t she? The bow isn’t too droopy, the mid-cabin portlight is wonderfully au courant, the swim platform is ample, the windshield is raked at 30-degrees – almost as much as a Lamborghini Gallardo LP 560 – and her sleek lines could make even a hidebound sailor swoon under his Tilley hat.

At the London Boat Show last January Sunseeker introduced its new Predator 64, a boat that the builder calls a “performance motoryacht” and says is capable of 35 knots, with the big diesels. She has three staterooms, a bunk for a crewman aft and décor that is as chic as anything the Italians could dream up, in fact it is Italian. Last winter BoatTEST’s COO visited the London Show and made a video of the new Predator 64, so if you have never been aboard a Sunseeker, here’s your chance. But be forewarned that this boat is not for everyone, nor does Sunseeker want to sell it to just anyone. The company is very particular. Take off your Topsiders, please --(Gucci loafers are okay.)

See Sunseeker Predator 64 video --

cross ruler

Top Ten List

 Regal 44 SC Ranks #1
In June Reader Interest

Regal 44 SC  Ocean Alexander 68  Chaparral 236 SX
#1-- Regal's 44 SC  #2 Ocean Alexander 68  #3 Chaparral 236 SX.

Of the 40 or so boats we wrote about in June, our readers once again exhibited their discerning eye and picked out the ones that were the most innovative or unusual. Probably most surprising (because she is so big) was that the Ocean Alexander 68 ranked #2. She is a go-anywhere Ed Monk design and her popularity among our readers attests to the fact that serious cruising is on the minds of a lot of our readers. That notion was reinforced by the #1 rank of the Regal 44 SC, which is a cruiser that is about 24’ more affordable. One of the smallest boats we covered ranked #4, but because it sells for about $10k one might think she would score #1 on the hit parade. To find out the rest of June’s Top Ten List --

cross ruler

Capt. Steve Says

Grand Banks 59 Aleutian RP:
Cruiser for the Last Harrah!

Grand Banks 59 Aleutian RP
A Grand Banks going 28 knots??? What’s going on here? What’s wrong with 8 knots? The Grand Banks Aleutian 59 is a breed apart. Dutch Harbor by sundown!

The fastest growing segment of the big boat market is offshore cruising motoryachts. Why are people buying these boats that typically cost anywhere from $600k to several million dollars in these troubled times? We think the reason is simple: for many retiring couples, it is simply now or never. Grand Banks’ Aleutian Series is the newest of their yacht lines and it is designed to appeal to the more sophisticated and adventuresome yachtsmen who have been spoiled by the planing speeds of express boats. In other words, people who are used to going fast and who don’t think that they can tolerate the more stately speeds of its Heritage Series, and who want more room, and have greater ambitions than its Eastbay Series might offer. To get Capt. Steve’s take on the Grand Banks 59 Aleutian RP --

Request a sea trial

cross ruler

Hydra-Sports News

Hydra-Sports 4100:
The Big Kahuna Offshore

Hydra-Sports 4100SF 

Capt. Steve put the Hydra-Sport 4100 through his maneuvering hoops and over hurdles and found her well-behaved at every turn.

“Kahuna” is a Hawaiian word, defined as a "Priest, sorcerer, magician, wizard, minister, expert in any profession." Prior to 1820 there were “kahunas” who built boats and it was their job to pass the skill on to the next generation. We couldn’t think of a better name for the Hydra-Sport 4100 as everyone could learn from this massive, 23,000 lbs. center console. She is the ultimate production center console in her class and price range. Owners of center consoles in the 30’s are moving up into the 4100. And owners of big battlewagon convertibles are down sizing and selecting this big kahuna of a center console because she has the beef they are used to. Let’s see what she looks like as Capt. Steve tests --

Request special factory pricing

cross ruler

Second Look

Cruisers Yachts 447
Sport Sedan Is Big!

Cruisers Yachts 447 
You’ll be hard pressed to find a 44’ boat with more usable room than the Cruisers Yachts 447 Sport Sedan.

Why settle for an express cruiser when, for almost the same price, you can have a sedan with 25% more deck area for entertaining, sunbathing, or just sightseeing? The answer to that simple question is one reason the Cruisers Yachts 447 has been so popular the last two years. It is simply a lot of boat for the money. Women like it because they feel secure both in the cockpit, on the flying bridge, and because it so big it is almost like a summer cottage. Men like it because the helm is high on the flying bridge which gives them great visibility when running and docking and the boat simply has a big-boat feel. The kids like it because of the great mid-cabin and a swim platform that is just above the waterline. And everyone loves the boat because it is powered by twin IPS 600 diesels with joystick control! Now let’s see what Capt. Steve likes about the boat – and what he doesn’t like -- 

Request a sea trial

Boat Repowering

Yanmar Repower:
Bertram 46 Battlewagon

Bertram 46 Repower
This 1974 Bertram 46 is for sale for $112,000. A few are even less, and many Bertram 46 are about $135,000.

The Bertram 46 was the offshore convertible of choice in the early 1970s and the model was built until 1988 when it was retired. The Bertram 46 was sold all over the world and is probably preferred by more fishing charter captains than any other. By our count there are about 100 currently on the market and most are powered with Detroit Diesel 8V92s or 8V71s. We found used Bertrams with anywhere from 435-hp to 750-hp, depending on how much bailing wire and duct tape was on them. Most people would choose not to own a boat powered with these engines at any horsepower. That’s why used Bertram 46s with DDAs are so inexpensive. To find out how much it would cost to repower one of these great old Bertram 46s with twin Yanmar 720-hp engines --

Read other Yanmar repower articles --

Navy News

Sea Trials for USS New York

Royal Purple will be conducting its own tests on the 684’ (208.5 m) USS New York sometime in November. Her 4 engines develop 40,000-hp.

Not officially a part of the US Navy fleet yet, the USS New York LPD-21 (Landing Platform Dock #21) has started her sea trails. She is the newest entry to the U.S. Navy's fleet of San Antonio-class LPD warships.’s very own COO Christopher Hughes is helping to arrange what is sure to be one of the most memorable commissions of any US Naval Vessel. will be testing the USS New York sometime in November and you will be getting the usual performance numbers of speed, fuel burn, noise levels along with a video of accommodations, engine room, and the helm. This is one vessel where all Americans are fractional owners. Setting this ship apart from the rest of the fleet is the fact that she carries within her bow, 7-1/2 tons of steel from the World Trade Center, which is intended to serve as a tribute, not a memorial. For more information and pictures --



Meridian Yachts

Larson Banner

Bayliner Banner

Maxum Banner


Royal Purple

Cruisers Yachts Banner




yamaha pwc

cross ruler

Engine Oil

Not All Engine Oil Is the Same

A new bearing surface appears smooth until magnified 1500X.
The same bearing surface roughened after using a leading synthetic oil.
The same bearing surface after being micro-polished by Royal Purple.
Royal Purple comes in different weights.

We must confess that when it comes to engine oil we have always thought that it was all pretty much the same and didn’t make much difference which brand or type we used. And when it came to synthetic oil – Wow! – do you know how much that stuff costs? Live and learn. We’re not embarrassed to admit we’re still learning and that is why we are so enthusiastic about passing on what we have found out about Royal Purple synthetic motor oil. Around the offices of we are so impressed with the stuff that we are all using it both in our boats and automobiles as well! It ain’t cheap, but because you don’t have to change oil as often and because of its incredible increase in lubricity we think that it is worth every dime. In fact, one of our staffers says that using Royal Purple has given him “peace of mind” because he now knows he’s using the best oil possible in his engine. To see how much Royal Purple reduces friction--lube the mouse

cross ruler

Capt. Steve Reports

Four Winns V338:
Oh the Places
You’ll Go!

Four Winns V338
The Four Winns V338 with Axius Joystick control makes docking a dream and with this beauty you can pull up to any yacht club with pride.

Whether it’s traveling to an offshore rendezvous with the sunset, or docktails at a remote marina at the edge of your chart, the Four Winns V338 will take you there with panache. With the Axius joystick stern drive system the whole family can take turns docking the boat just for the fun of it. At 33 feet, Four Winns has done a good job of getting the capabilities of a far larger express cruiser designed into a more affordable package. And as you can see in the picture above, the Four Winns V338 will turn heads and get thumbs up when you motor along. We asked Capt. Steve to take a good look at the V338. Here’s his report --

Shakedown Cruise

Fleming 65 Goes 900 Miles to Canal

Fleming Rafted
Rafted with a 55’ convertible fresh from Costa Rica, Tony Flemings 65’ Venture makes her way through the Panama Canal.

Tony Fleming's shakedown of a lifetime on his new Fleming 65 now takes him 900 miles from the Galapagos Islands to the Panama Canal. Along the way we learn about the failure of some important equipment. We also find out about how much fuel this vessel is burning and what sort of range is possible. Once in the canal, Tony gives us a lock-by-lock commentary about what it is like to take one’s pride-and-joy through this very commercial waterway amongst towering Panamax vessels. Join us as we transit from the Pacific to the Caribbean --

Read BoatTEST’s review of the Fleming 65 --

Electronics News

The Garmin GPSMAP 440 Basic Chartplotter for $399

Garmin GPSMAP 400
It’s the least expensive plotter in the Garmin lineup at $399, but boaters still are going without one. Once you have used a chartplottter you won’t want to leave home without it. 

Even with low prices, some boaters are still heading out the inlet without a chartplotter onboard. We find that a bit mind-boggling, but perhaps the old ones were too expensive, or too complicated, or too big, or hard to install. Garmin’s new 440 sells for only $399, and has a street price even lower, so we decided to take a look at it to see if it is worthy of a BoatTEST recommendation. If it would be good enough for a small boat, then why not also use it as a remote on a large boat? Read what Capt. Steve has to say about it --

Learn more about the GPSMAP 440 and where to purchase it

Save the Date

Monaco Classic Week: Belle Epoch Revisited

Monaco Painting
The harbor of Monte Carlo is one of the most breathtaking in the world and is at the heart of the yachting scene right in the middle of the French and Italian Riviera.

Save the dates: September 16-20 in Monaco. The word over cocktails at Harbor Court (the New York Yacht Club’s Newport, RI station) over the 4th of July weekend was that the Monaco Classic Week will be the one “don’t miss” yachting event in the Fall. While the emphasis on the water will be the great old classic sailboats from just before and after the turn of the 19th Century, there will be numerous classic steam-powered motoryachts and vintage powerboats on hand and there is even a predicted log race for the coveted Hublot Trophy. As always, finding dock space or a mooring in Monaco’s beautiful but snug harbor will be next to impossible, but don’t delay booking at marinas down the coast – and thanks to the economy there are still some slips available. For pictures and an itinerary of the week’s festivities --

Product Review

Shurhold's Serious Marine Cleaner

Serious Marine Cleaner
Shurhold products makes cleaning your boat feel like less of a chore.

With so many cleaning products on the market, the team at Shurhold asked us to give their “Serious Marine Cleaner” a try. Removing nasty stains, scum marks at the waterline, grease, dirt, scuff marks and other grime on a boat's various surfaces is an age-old chore, and one that can take a lot of time and effort. Let's see how it worked.

To find out the name of your closest retailer for “Serious Marine Cleaner”… 

Selene News

Selene Develops
New Sterns

Selene Stern
This is a 49’ Selene with its new stern. Note the tube for the stern thruster and the boat also has a bow thruster.

Ten years ago the first Selene Ocean Trawler yacht arrived in the U.S. and they tell us, since that time the Chinese company has sold nearly 400 boats. The company builds boats from 36’ to 66’ and has plans for a 75-footer. The boats are displacement-speed vessels designed to make 8 knots or so, most with one engine, but as you see in the picture above, that boat has twins. Howard Chen is the founder, designer and CEO, and has done tank testing to refine his hulls into a new, more rounded shape. The read more --


Angler Gets Record Irish Shark

Joe Waldis
Joe Waldis with his 1056 lb. (480 kg.) bluntnose six-gill shark.

The British media is saying this is the largest fish ever caught on rod and line in the waters of the British Isles. And it was caught by a 70-year old Swiss pensioner. It took Joe Waldis 35 minutes of almighty struggle to bring the 12’ 9” bluntnose six-gill shark to the side of his boat off the coast of County Clare in south-west Ireland, after it took his mackerel bait. This decisively smashes the record for the heaviest rod-caught fish in British or Irish waters, overtaking a 968 lb. bluefin tuna caught in 2001 (also off Ireland), and is more than double the weight of the heaviest rod-caught fish within the UK, a porbeagle shark of 507 lbs. taken off Orkney in 1993. To read more of this fishy tale --

Reader Report

Readers' News & Submissions Invited

Bill Noble
Bill Noble is one of BoatTEST’s most consistent contributors. He is pictured here during 4th of July celebrations last weekend with a cool Coors Light, his payment of choice.

Some of the best material that appears in the BoatTEST e-newsletters comes from our readers. With over 300,000 members around the world our readers are constantly on the water, shooting pictures, making Three Stooges sightings, learning seamanship lessons, catching big fish, to say nothing of surfing the web and running across photos and videos of interest to fellow powerboat owners. We invite all readers to submit anything you think your peers might enjoy or learn from. Submissions can be most anything of interest: pictures, links to videos on YouTube, articles, how-to-do-it tips, Stooge sightings, complaints, advice, I-learned-about-boating from-that stories, dead fish pictures, local newspaper stories, or your favorite boat pix. Be sure to include your full name and address as all submissions used will receive a BoatTEST coupon for one six-pack of Coors Light, or if you are under 21, a coupon for one six-pack of Dr. Pepper. Send to:

cross ruler

Boating Safety

Video of 23 Awesome Race Boat Crashes!

   Boat Crash :14 Boat Crash :20 Boat Crash :43
This is the most awesome boat crash video we have ever seen!

All over America this summer there will be all types of boat races from small outboard boats to huge offshore racers. If you think that boat racing is a lot safer than Indy Car racing, then you better think again and take a look at this video. While we know of no comparative statistics, our guess is that boat racing is far more dangerous. People might think water is soft but at 60 mph + it is as hard as concrete both for the human body and lightly-fabricated fiberglass boats. Not only that, as this video will show, at high speeds just about anything can make a boat get squirrely and cause the driver to lose control. Let’s go to the video tape --

cross ruler

Capt. Steve's Lesson #44

How to Handle Your Boat
in Different Sea Conditions

Capt. Steve

 You don’t want to be out in a small boat like this one in the above sea conditions, but knowing how to maneuver your boat should you encounter rough seas is important.

This week Capt. Steve goes over five new lessons and guidelines on understanding wave characteristics and how to handle your boat in different types of sea conditions. Learn how to approach a head sea and make the ride more comfortable for you and your passengers, learn how to handle the boat in a following sea. These are basic procedures which all recreational boaters should be aware of. 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

"Be patient! I'm telling you, this boat is a Chick-Magnet." - Cabral

Second Place
"Yup, no seagull will ever dare come near it!" - G. Wolf

Honorable (almost) Mention
"Poultry in motion." - Davis

This is a chicken tender. - J. Hole

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 7/13


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