ACY 72 — By Jeffrey Moser
— October 2005
Bauhaus & Ballyhoo
Part 2: A hard turn to port and back to starboard had her dancing on her chines with the balance of a ballerina.
The emphasis on function that’s a central theme of Bauhaus makes its presence well known in Yellowbird’s true intentions: raising fish. A 200-square-foot, teak-sole cockpit feels as big as a battlefield (the full-size BlueWater fighting chair seems lost) and is well equipped for fighting big game. Its stowage capabilities are impressive: The stainless steel-lined, in-sole fishbox with ice machine and port-side bait freezer have a combined area of 46 cubic feet, more than enough for a few flats of ballyhoo and a bounty of 100-pound-class yellowfins. (Her flying bridge boasts two more stainless steel-lined freezers with a combined capacity of 25 cubic feet.) Amenities such as a refrigerated bait tray, 60-gallon livewell, ‘fridge with room for several cases of beverages, 33-inch transom door, a total of 18 rod holders, and 44-foot Rupp quad-spreader outriggers ensure anglers will have all they need for their pelagic pursuits.
A dead-calm Biscayne Bay didn’t yield much of a challenge for Yellowbird. In fact, the biggest chop she faced was her own wake. But she sure was fast and an absolute blast to drive. With the twin 2,000-hp MTU 16V 2000s at WOT, the 72 averaged 42.5 mph at 2350 rpm, and her Hynautic hydraulic steering was tight and responsive—a hard turn to port and back to starboard had her dancing on her chines with the balance of a ballerina.
If we had faced rough conditions, her stout construction suggests that she would’ve handled it well. (On her shakedown cruise to Turks & Caicos, Capt. Cameron McDowell claims he maintained a steady 24 knots in a six-foot head sea with nary a problem.) Yellowbird is a cold-molded, wooden boat, built keel-up on a steel jig. Her fir stringers are wrapped diagonally and vacuum-bagged with three layers of bruynzeel plywood on the bottom and two layers on the hull sides. The hull is then covered with Kevlar and finished with resin and fairing compound. According to ACY, the toughness of the Kevlar and the vacuum-bagging result in a stronger, lighter hull with better glass-to-resin and strength-to-weight ratios than a foam-cored fiberglass hull.
Back at the dock, I was skirting the borderline for missing my flight back to New York, but I quickly stowed my gear and went right back aboard the 72. Her crew was washing her down, and I stood as long as I could, admiring the teak cockpit. In the saloon, McDowell was making arrangements for an upcoming trip.
“Next time you’re down this way, we gotta go fishing,” he said.
“Sounds good to me,” I responded casually, although I could hardly contain my excitement. I smiled as I thought about my good fortune; now all I gotta do is figure out a way to get back aboard this one-of-a-kind beauty.
American Custom Yachts ( (772) 286-2835. www.americancustomyachts.com.
This article originally appeared in the November 2005 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.