42 Classic Trawler — By Capt. Bill Pike —
|Part 2: The 42’s superstructure is balsa-cored to reduce weight aloft.|
I looked around. Headroom was approximately five feet. Walls and bulkheads were covered with perforated, aluminum-laminated sound-absorbent material. The bottoms of the saloon-sole supports were mounted on shock absorbers to nix vibration. The number of through-hulls was low thanks to stainless steel collectors for drain lines from showers, sinks, and air-conditioning units that exited the boat via single seacocks. And there was a hatch in the forward firewall for fast, convenient engine-room checks underway.
Bentzen and I examined the rest of the interior once we’d put the saloon back to rights. Auxiliary equipment was plentiful and intelligently installed, from an optional stacked washer/dryer off the companionway leading forward to the VIP to the optional electronics at the lower helm. I especially liked that both the VIP and aft master had their own heads, each with a separate stall shower. One thing I found uninspiring, however, was the berth configuration in the master, with a double on the starboard side, a wide single on the port, and a big, armoire-like cabinet in between. A large, modern, island-type berth makes more sense.
I cranked the mains, and Bentzen did deckhand duty as I settled into a comfortable and adjustable Pompanette helm chair on the flying bridge and walked the 42 away from the dock. All it took was a couple of shots from the optional 10-hp SidePower bow thruster and a couple more from the outboard engine.
We did our testing on nearby Lake Washington, which was enlivened by a one- to two-foot chop. To get to the lake from Bentzen’s location, I had to navigate a narrow little stretch of water called Montlake Cut. Although there seemed to be little traffic in open water, the cut was chock-a-bloc with kayaks, canoes, runabouts, fishboats, and other recreational cruisers, both east- and westbound. The 42 proved her maneuvering mettle yet again, negotiating with aplomb.
Average top speed was 14.5 mph, an acceptable number considering the 2.45:1 gear ratio—deeper ratios tend to favor low-end torque over top-end performance. Sightlines from the helm were excellent, turning radius was broad, which is typical of inboard configurations in general, and cornering was virtually flat, with neither an inboard nor an outboard bias. I was a little surprised by this latter phenomenon and attribute it to a fairly low vertical center of gravity—the 42’s superstructure is balsa-cored to reduce weight aloft—and a keel that’s substantial enough to promote tracking, but not so large as to heel the boat outboard when cornering.
Since the actual sea trial took just a couple of hours, I was able to spend the rest of the afternoon driving Symbol’s 42-foot Classic Trawler around Seattle and its environs while listening to Bentzen’s commentaries on everything from Bill Gates’ house to the speed-to-length ratios of the seiners tied up at Fishermen’s Terminal.
It was a classic day on the water—one of the best. But then, given the great ol’ guy I was with and the fine boat I was operating, this was hardly surprising at all.
Symbol Yachts (Holiday Marine Sales) Phone: (800) 525-1425. www.holiday-marine.com.
This article originally appeared in the March 2004 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.