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Boat Tests

By Capt. Richard Thiel | Posted April 2008

A lot of boatbuilders struggle to find their groove. They just can't settle on exactly whom they want to appeal to. In fact, they seem to want to be all things to all boaters....

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By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted April 2008

The spot where I found the Nordlund Xpress LT 57 appealed to me about as much as the vessel herself. She was tied alongside a pier on the Hylebos Waterway, just behind Nordlund's...

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By Capt. Patrick S... | Posted April 2008

I couldn't stop laughing.Craig Muir, Sessa Marine's U.S. general manager and my partner on a recent high-speed romp of a boat test, was laughing, too. Why? Torque. Every time I...

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By Capt. Patrick S... | Posted April 2008

Sitting in a marina full of white fiberglass vessels of varying sizes and shapes was this dark-hulled, silken-looking, 50-foot, triple-IPS-powered express sport cruiser. While the...

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By Capt. Richard Thiel | Posted March 2008

Who among us has not, after boarding dozens of boats and talking to dozens of salespeople, wished we could just design and build our next boat ourselves so she would be exactly...

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By Capt. Grant Rafter | Posted March 2008

The Ocean 58 SS, the replacement for the 57 SS, is the baby of John Leek IV, known around the industry as J4. This is J4's second boat as general manager—his first was the...

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By Capt. Richard Thiel | Posted March 2008

Under a low-hanging, leaden sky and dodging sheets of rain, we'd just finished our performance testing of the Davis 70 in the protected ICW off St. Lucie, Florida. Now we were...

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By Capt. Patrick S... | Posted February 2008

She first appeared as a dot on the radar. But in an instant, 63 feet of sparkling, metallic orange streaked up behind my tournament team's boat like a rapidly rising sun. This sun...

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By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted February 2008

Sometimes boat tests start problematically. Take my wring-out of Riviera's 45 Open Flybridge. The morning I was to fly down to Stuart, Florida, to jump aboard her at Riviera...

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By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted January 2008

I'd say I'm a reasonably humble guy. Now and again I let the cat out of the bag, so to speak, but mostly I manage to restrain my grosser ego-driven tendencies, a state of affairs...

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By Capt. Patrick S... | Posted January 2008

The wind may have been blowing 25-plus, but the 60 feet of battlewagon beneath my feet easily beat down the blowhard wind, and the four- to six-foot seas topped with a seething...

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By Alan Harper | Posted January 2008

Even after all these years, a new Riva is an event. All that iconic imagery—so carefully cultivated by the Ferretti Group's marketing people—of the 1960's jet set...

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By Capt. Grant Rafter | Posted January 2008

After hiding my mouth under a respirator and slipping on protective eyewear, I entered the Sea Ray plant in Palm Coast, Florida, where workers were grinding away on a column of...

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By Capt. Richard Thiel | Posted January 2008

You don't have to have the windows.That may be the most important message I can convey to hardcore anglers interested in the Bertram 700. I know a bunch of you are this very...

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By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted December 2007

My first experiences with dayboating were some of the most pivotal of my life. And at the heart of almost every one was a riveted-aluminum Lone Star skiff outfitted with a 40-hp...

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By Capt. Richard ThielPhotos by Jim R... | Posted December 2007

I never got the chance to talk to Lane Scelzi, owner of All Wet, the Hampton 580 Pilothouse I tested in early November, but I wish I had. I'd love to have heard him tell me why,...

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By Capt. Grant Rafter | Posted December 2007

Nearing the end of the Port Everglades breakwater off Fort Lauderdale, our Africat 420 was making about 12 mph. Noting the two- to four-foot seas rolling in from the southeast, I...

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By Capt. Bill PikePhotos by Neil ... | Posted December 2007

Due to life's vagaries and vicissitudes, I was warned that our test boat, a sporty little San Juan 30 with a super-gorgeous optional "wood package" (teak helm, sea rails, and seat...

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By Alan Harper | Posted December 2007

The first Pershing I ever drove was the 88. She was big and fast and looked like she'd been designed by George Lucas' props department. But the thing most people remember about...

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By George L. Petrie | Posted November 2007

Remember when you could just go into a place and order a cup of coffee? Not anymore. Now it's got to be half-caf, half-decaf cappuccino with extra foam and a sprinkle of shaved...

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By Alan Harper | Posted November 2007

The Neapolitan shipyard of Baia has always been known for its boats' distinctive styling. Wraparound windscreens and long, convex foredecks were a design signature, which still...

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By Capt. Patrick S... | Posted November 2007

I'm in Ohio, the home state of two dozen NASA astronauts and the official birthplace of aviation, so it's in this spirit that I prepare for liftoff.Standing at the helm with the...

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By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted October 2007

Maybe it was just the way things looked that morning around the marina at Roche Harbor Resort, a lovely little spot on the northern coast of evergreen-fringed San Juan Island just...

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By Capt. Patrick S... | Posted October 2007

I couldn't see what was making the sound, but the pitter-patter of paws approached from across the optional teak cockpit sole. Then the first mate, a four-legged friend named...

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By Capt. Bill Pike | Posted October 2007

My day onboard Tiara Yachts' new flagship, the 5800 Sovran, began unusually on two counts. First, thanks to a contest-winning letter that sincerely and super-entertainingly...

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