BoatTEST Newsletter 02/13/2008 - 02/13/2008
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67th Annual Miami International Boat Show
Miami Boat Show Opens Tomorrow
Thousands of boats, engine, electronics and accessories will be on display at the country's largest boat show
Date & Time 2-14 10-6
2-15 10-8
2-16 10-8
2-17 10-8
2-18 10-6
2-14 $30
2-15 $16
Kids 13-15 $6
Kids under 12 &
Collins Ave. Free
3 Powerboat Venues
Miami Convention Center
1901 Convention Center Drive
Miami Beach
Small boats, engines, accessories

Sea Isle Marina
1635 N. Bayshore
Powerboats 35' -55' +/-

Collins Ave.
Between 41st & 51st
Large powerboats, 40'+

Boat Handling Break-Through of the Decade!
MerCruiser: First to Market
with Sterndrive Joysticks
The #1 fear of boaters is not sinking offshore or drowning, it is docking the boat in front of ones friends and making a hash of it. BoatTEST Bookstore's docking guide books out sell all other titles 4:1. Two years ago Volvo-Penta first solved the problem for owners of diesel-powered express cruisers with its IPS, and now MerCrusier has become the first to do it in production of gas-powered sterndrives with a system called Axius. Capt. Rob Smith interviews MerCruiser President Kevin Grodzki about the new fly-by-wire technology…

A revolutionary docking break-through
The joystick comes to sterndrives
will change boating
Control software can be
axius 5
has back-up system

See the New Axius Joystick in action at the Miami Boat Show at the Sea Isle Marina venue in these boats: Crownline 300LS, Formula 370SS, Maxum 2900, Rinker 350, Sea Ray 310DA.

Six New Boats Tested

Manitou 22 X-Plode
Cruise SHP
manitou 22
The 22 X-plode Cruise is a new addition to the Manitou line-up this year. This model features room for 10, V-Toon technology and Manitou's Sport Handling Package (SHP).
See test speeds and video.
Smoker Craft 182
Pro Magsmokercraft 182
This well equipped 182 is the flagship of Smoker Crafts's Pro Mag series.  Equipped with a single 150-hp Mercury OptiMax on test day, the 182 hit an impressive top speed of 49.0 mph.
See complete test results and video.
Baja 277 Islanderbaja 277
All have come to expect speed from Baja, but this Baja delivers not only speed, but comfort too.  The 277 model boasts room for 10 and on test day reached a thrilling top speed of 60.2 turning 5000 rpm.  See test and video.

Four Winns H200

four winns h200
From eye-catching graphics to the collapsible ski arch, Four Winns H200 Frenzy Edition features almost everything a watersports enthusiast could need for a day on the water. 
See test and video.
Sun Tracker Party Barge 25 Regency Edition
sun tracker 25
The Regency edition of Sun Tracker's Party Barge 25 is loaded with classy looks and thoughtful design at an affordable price: $27,495.
See test and video.
nitro z7
The Nitro Z-7 has all of the features a serious angler is looking for and the $21,995 price complete with a 150-hp Mercury engine and trailer, is hard to beat. See the complete test and video.

Basic Boating Instruction
Baja 35 Outlaw Becomes Law-Abiding in European Community
The EU has banned loud noise before cigarette smoking, so Baja obeys the law…and continues smoking cigarettes
Listen to noise
at cruise

Sound of music?
Quiet at the dock
Listen to noise
at WOT

Italians will still love it

On Jan. 1, 2006 new EU noise abatement regulations went into effect relative to outboard and sterndrive powered boats. As of then, single-engine boats were not allowed to have a noise reading of over 72 dB(A) 40 meters from shore, and twin-engine-powered boats were not permitted above 78 cc (A), and triple engines above 81 dB(A). Baja Marine is the first builder in the U.S. to meet the standard...hear all about it.

Miami Show preview

Grady-White Fisherman 222grady-white fisherman 222
Grady-White packs a punch when it comes to equipping their boats with the right tools for  fishing. This model is rated for up to 250-hp, and with a draft of 16 inches you can get into some skinny water when you want to.  See video.
Scout 295 Abaco
scout 295 abaco
The 295 Abaco is the flagship of the Scout fleet sporting 52 square feet of fishing space in the cockpit. This 30’ 2” center console is rated for up to a maximum of 600-hp and carries 200 gallons of fuel.
See video.
 Yamaha VX CruiserYamaha VX Cruiser
Total cruising comfort, added security with its new seat design, and top-notch performance all wrapped up in a tidy 127''. The VX Cruiser incorporates features of Yamaha’s flagship FX Cruiser with the value-targeted VX line.  
See video.
Baja 278 Performance
baja 278
Baja’s 24-degree deadrise at the transom is about as deep as V-hulls get, and it really pays off when the seas kick up, with a deeper V providing a smoother ride. The 278 offers engine choices up to 600-hp.
See video. 

Boat Show Preview
2008 Spring Boat Show "Short List"
These boats have all been tested by BoatTEST
Click and see tests and videos…

baja 247
247 Islander
  B. Whaler
200 Dauntless

Interceptor 232
cobalt 252
Canadian 1850
Elite 235
 260 CC
formula 240
240 Bowrider
Four Winns
Glacier Bay
glacier bay
2665 Canyon
GT 225
Gulfstream 232
Vector 2900CC
C-210 SC
Escape 234 I/O
1901 Inshore
Response LXi
24 X-Plode Cruise
210 SunSation
230 Wake
2901 Walkaround
192 Ultima
Sun Tracker
Bass Buggy 18
Pro Team 170 TX
235 CC
270 Coastal
World Cat
250 DC

Sorensen's details make the difference
Part II:
Bowrider Functionality
There’s more to a good bowrider than handy drink holders. Eric Sorensen shows you what to look for

Basic Boating Instruction
Mercury Marine Presents:
New Basic Boating Video Series
We urge new boaters, youngsters, spouses and even old salts to watch these terrific basic boating videos.
Second in the series--

Pre-Departure Check List

Whether you are new to  boating or have been at it for years, you should use a check list. 
Mechanical Condition
Boat Handling around
the Slip

mercury around
Sniff for gas, run the blower, trim your engine... Review all start-up procedures.

New Product banner

Low-Cost Get Home Battery System
Now small boats with only one battery can have a reliable back-up for low cost.

charles industry
Ideal for bass boats, PWCs, jon boats, bay boats, etc. where weight, room and cost are important.

Charles Industries has devised a clever little device called “Start Now” which can be your AAA water service without the wait. If your main, engine cranking battery runs down you’ve got a problem. But with the “Start Now” device, all you need to do is have a cheap, small battery connected to it, and your motor will start. See Capt. Smith’s product video for all of the details, and an example of when it won’t work…

Want to buy Start Now? Visit our store.

What is going on here

Take a good look at this picture and guess what is going on here and think (like a sailor).

Last week we asked you to write a caption for the photo above.  Below are a few of our favorite responses.

Reader Captions
First Place – Winner of the Ducky!
It looks like Tony Soprano's Sail Boat. And he is taking a few guy's out for a sail.
--N. Campanale

Second Place – No Cigar
(or Ducky, but Good)

Gentle cycle for washing delicates

"Blow-Boat Limbo".
--Capt. Bob

Tipsy sailor.
--L. Decarlo

Honorable (more or less) Mentions
How they hangin'? --N. Toth

Wife went out of town, he retrieved them from her nightstand, now they are out of her reach!

Look honey I got free undercover storage and I can paint the bottom. Grab my coffee before it spills.
--L. Renne
"What is Going on Here?"

what is going on here
You write the caption!

Will you win the coveted "Ducky Trophy" for best caption? Simply fill in your caption and you may get lucky...quack here

Accident Report

Boat Fire in Thunder Alley
Three boats suffer damage and an owner is burned

Boat fires can usually be avoided.

A South Florida man is lucky to be alive after the engines of his boat exploded in flames one Sunday morning, last month. Miami Dade Fire Rescue said two of their fire engines reached the burning boat at the High Lift Marina on Northeast 187th Avenue in Aventura within minutes…but not quite soon enough. To find out what happened…switch this ignition


New Caravelle 267 Bowrider Goes

New design has SOTA gelcoat, no wood, Corian tops, molded in swim platform and a great price

Caravelle has pulled out all of the stops to produce this new up-market 26’ bowrider.

Caravelle’s new 267 Bowrider looks impressive and luxurious right from the get-go. This spacious model uses 100% wood free construction with a center walk-thru transom, U-bench w/sundeck, two flip-up bucket seats, and a fiberglass floor w/snap-in carpet. During the last couple of years this builder has been quietly upgrading its product and its new models have been impressive. To find out more about the new 267 Bowrider…bow out here
mako logo 

contributors wanted Expands Writing Staff
Industry professionals, captains, veteran powerboaters are invited to contribute
to power boating’s
largest e-newsletter

contribs banner
The huge BoatTEST e-newsletter editorial staff is looking to expand in order to keep pace with the demands of its 202,000 subscribers.

BTC Publishing’s weekly e-newsletters are read by virtually everyone in the industry as well as tens of thousands of boat owners from 15-footers to 90-footers around the world. We are now looking for contributors to both and Offshore Motoryacht who can help us keep our readers up to the minute on a broad range of boating subject matter. Of course -- powerboats only. If you are interested in contributing…plunk your magic keyboard

boattest news

BTC Visitors
up 25%
in Jan. ’08 vs. ’07
Over 312,000 unique visitors came to BTC in Jan – 50% more than the largest
monthly boating mag

This is what 250,000 people look like, about the number who visited our site in January 2007. This January, 25% more people than in this picture came to BTC to research boats.

Most people now do their research for boats on the Internet.  In January, 37,000 people visited BTC twice and over 25,000 visited 3 or more times. Currently, over 200,000 people subscribe to our weekly newsletters. In January, 23% of our visitors came from outside the United States. 

sound off

Reader Feedback, Opinions, Inquiries, Ideas, Suggestions

When a thought crosses your mind about boats and boating, chances are hundreds of other boat owners would be interested in what you have to say. Let us know what you’re thinking and we’ll try to produce an article to answer your questions, publish your thoughts, or just take it to heart. To make it easy for you, all you need do is …Sound Off here.


Boating Industry Customer Survey
You Be the Judge!
The boating industry is hungry for boat-owner feedback. Here is your chance to let the brass know what you think

Your STYLE preference?
is enough?
Your WARRANTY requirements?
Are you  
PRICE sensitive?
Is boating in
your  FUTURE?
BoatTEST wants to get your feedback to builders so that they can bake your ideas and concepts into the next generation of boats. With the advent of the Internet the consumer has never before been so influential. And now, most builders have access to a five-axis router with CAD which means new tooling can be made in months not years. Take a few minutes to share your thoughts with us and we’ll get your advice into the executive offices of America’s boat builders. Sound off here…

reading room

The Essentials of Living Aboard a Boat by Mark Nicholas
Mark Nicholas combines his experience of life aboard with the advice of other liveaboards, marina owners, technicians, boat manufacturers and advocates in order to detail the challenges and offer real advice for success. Living aboard is a wonderful lifestyle but it is not easy. This book is an honest and passionate depiction of the lifestyle and its issues.

List Price: $17.95
Price: $12.21
You Save: $5.74

prop bookThe Propeller Handbook: The Complete Reference for Choosing, Installing, and Understanding Boat Propellers by Dave Gerr
At first, choosing the correct propeller for your boat may seem simple. But as one choice affects another, affects another, many boaters feels that propeller selection is more like divine intervention than logic. This book answers all those questions regarding propeller choice. Written for small boats, this handy easy-to-use reference book is a must have!!! All of these questions and more are answered in this complete reference book:

List Price: $19.95
Price: $13.57
You Save: $ 6.38


envoyBuoy Selection
The sole purpose of the mooring buoy is to support the mooring chain. The boat should be tied to the anchor chain, never to the buoy or hardware. Don’t forget when choosing your buoy that buoy floatation is measured according to the pounds of buoyancy that they provide. Check out the extensive line of buoys available at tremendously DISCOUNTED PRICES!!

Click here for the Sur-Moor Buoys and Accessories

Click here for the Sur-Mark Buoys 

Click here for the Regulatory Buoys 

Water Ski Marker Buoys 

Personal Watercraft Buoys