A Wakeboat with Cruisability
Tigé has made its reputation pushing the wakeboat performance envelope, and doing so with panache. In the heady world of wakeboarding the Tigé brand has garnered something akin to cult status among its demanding owners, most of whom are wake dudes. But when we tested the Tigé RZ4 our captain made an interesting and surprising discovery -- she is also a capable sportboat that the whole family can enjoy as an ordinary day boat. Take a look for yourself...
New Features Video
Prestige 500S Yacht:
A Classic Cruiser with 3 Staterooms
A previous video showed the performance and handling of the Prestige 500S, and today we present the other half of the story – a video look inside. This is where she impresses us because her designers have managed to get the accommodations of a 60 or 65-footer in 50’. Equally compelling is the fact that Prestige is selling this yacht for what many builders charge for a boat in the low 40’ range. The important take-away is that this classic looking design is seaworthy, has three staterooms, and is being offered at an MSRP in the low $800s. It is rare to find a seaworthy yacht where all of the important things have done right for a “value” price-point. We think the Prestige 500S is such a find.
Let’s take a look...
Rinker 186 BR:
Starting You Out Right
Whether you're just starting out in boating, or winding down with a retirement that has you trailering a boat to lakeside retreats, you should take a close look at Rinker's 18' 9" (5.71 m) bowrider. We found her to be a capable contender in class. Rinker also makes room for upgraded power choices and amenities, which we like. With a base price of just over $24k, and fully loaded for $29k, this is an 18’ bowrider that gets you on the water safely for a reasonable price.
Let's take a closer look...
Sea Ray 500 Sundancer:
Now Zeus Pods and Joystick Are Standard
The 2011 model Sea Ray 500 Sundancer has been upgraded to Zeus pods with joystick control, so we recently tested the 500 to take her measure. What we discovered -- once again -- was that pod-drive propulsion is far more responsive and sure-footed than is the conventional inboard drive system with rudder steering. We're told that most new 500s are equipped with the Zeus pod drives and only a few are sold with the optional V-drive option.
Let's take a look at one of Sea Ray's largest boats...
New Test Video
New SeaVee 340i (aka Dream Machine):
The Beginning of the Single-Pod Era
Imagine taking a large center console and removing two to four outboards from the stern so you can go game fishing just like the folks in the big battlewagons. Further,
imagine putting in a single engine where it belongs -- out of the way, low, down in the bilge to optimize the vessel's vertical, longitudinal and athwartships centers of gravity. Now because the boat has a bow thruster and a pod drive you can have full joystick control for docking. This dream machine is the SeaVee 340i -- and there is literally nothing like her.
Step aboard here...
Jeanneau NC11 Yacht:
Large Day Boat And Coastal Cruiser
Jeanneau set their design team to the task of creating an entirely new concept in a small coastal cruiser. It needed to have versatility, storage and accommodations for the long haul, but also excel at being a day boat and a watersports platform. At first glance, we thought this boat looked a bit unusual. But once we started using her, and taking advantage of the NC11’s chameleon-like ability to adapt to new onboard venues, we were hooked and reeled in. The "NC" appropriately stands for New Concept.
See what that means...
New Test Video
New Regal 2500:
A 50 mph Bowrider
Regal is no stranger to modern styling and its all new 2500 is no exception. We found it loaded with thoughtful touches that raise the Regal 2500 up from mediocrity to something akin to a floating piece of nautical art (its towing arch notwithstanding). Putting the subjectivity of aesthetic considerations aside, its most notable attribute in our opinion is its handling at high speed. Years ago Regal’s designers broke the code on how to take a stepped hull and make it behave during aggressive cranking and banking. Our captain’s keen eye found a wrinkle or two, but how important are they?
Let’s take a look in a full test...
Cabo 44 HTX Yacht:
A Big Offshore Express Fishboat
Last winter Cabo introduced its newest boat, the 44 HTX, a hardtop express fishboat. In most ways she is a typical Cabo, but there is one word that stands out to best describe her – big. That bigness starts with her 18’ 6” max beam which falls forward in the interior accommodations and bow flair. At 43,200 lbs. displacement (light) she is a good compromise between a light open express and heavy battlewagon – and there is nothing quite like her on the market.
Let’s take a look...
The Proof Is In the Test:
The team at BoatTEST put the Shurhold Dual Action Polisher to the test on a very used and neglected boat. We used Shurhold products with this electric polisher and came away happy with the results.
Come along with Capt. Steve and see for yourself...
Buy a Dual Action Polisher and get one of each pad free:
1 FREE Buff Magic Pad
1 FREE Pro Polish Pad
Coupon Code at check out: BTS
Evinrude 150 E-TEC:
We Take a Look
"Under the Hood"
For the last several years Evinrude has made some bold claims about the properties of their E-TEC line of engines... things such as extended life, years before requiring initial maintenance, and then there’s that "continuing to run with no oil" claim. We decided to take an in-depth look at some of the components in a typical E-TEC, in this case the 150-HO model, and see what it is that makes them... well, what they are. But more to the point, we set out to answer the question of what is different about them, and can they keep running for up to five hours with no oil.
Check out our video tour of the Evinrude 150-HO E-TEC and see if you’re convinced that this engine solves a lot of problems, or just puts a new coat of paint on them.
Video of Gaffer Pulled Overboard by Swordfish
Having once seen a wireman pulled overboard by a green 1200-lb. (545 kg.) black marlin off the Great Barrier Reef when the wire tangled around his hand, this video resonated with us. The video won the Islamorada Fishing Film Festival recently. The swordfish was about 150-lbs. which is not large by any standard and the mate simply held on with pluck and was not fouled.
Take a look...
Rescue of the Week
60' Yacht Sinks 80 Miles
North of Kodiak Island
Thanks to proper preparation, modern electronics, and the USCG five men were saved recently when their 60’ motoryacht went down in the Gulf of Alaska on May 22. This sad event was kept from being a tragic one thanks to the owner/skipper Tom Alexander who not only had aboard survival gear, but the night before the sinking had run an emergency orientation session that included his crew and passengers practicing putting on survival suits and launching the life raft. It is unusual that we learn of the cause of the sinking, but it becomes pretty clear what happened as the story unfolds.
Read it and pass it on...
Lesson of the Week
How to Dock with Twin Inboards
This week Capt. Steve goes over six new lessons and guidelines on docking your twin inboard boat. Watch demonstrations with Capt. Steve approaching the dock, backing into a slip, and maneuvering the boat through close quarters. You’ll learn how to pivot your twin inboard, and how to “walk the boat” or move sideways without bow thrusters. The videos presented this week are part of BoatTEST.com’s Boating Course which is USCG-approved. Watch these video boating lessons every week on BoatTEST.com.
To view this week’s lessons --
To view past lessons --
Ducky Award Winner
"In today's market, I could only afford the interior. Next year, the hull!"
- T. Canter
"I told you to turn the prints around, Floyd! You built the dang thing inside out!"
- E. Jahoda
Honorable (almost) Mentions
"Extraterrestrials don't always travel in flying saucers." - P. Bolden
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