3370 Offshore — By Capt. Bill Pike —
|In a hurry? Pursuit’s 3370 Offshore will get you to the big ones fast.|
What a day it was. Sun beaming down. Gulf Stream so inky blue it was almost purple. Kenny Chesney on the Clarion drawlin’, “No shoes, no shirt, no problem.” And me kicked back at the helm of Pursuit’s 3370 Offshore, with the three-way adjustable Teleflex SeaStar steering wheel set up just right, the bow pulpit pointed due east toward the Bahamas, and the Raymarine RL70C digital readout showing a sweet cruise speed of 43 mph.
Not a bad ride, either. The boat was making mincemeat of the swells, which were coming at us sideways, from the north mostly, with long, smooth stretches between six-foot crests. She tracked like a bullet, too, needing little more than an occasional fingertip-type tweak from yours truly. But then, Pursuit typically puts a sea-chompin’ running surface under its fishing platforms, with lots of wave-slicing V forward (deadrise amidships is well over 40 degrees) and rounded, almost barrel-shape sections aft—a feature that tends to boost both lift and top speed, as well as promote transverse stability dockside or while trolling offshore.
For grins I switched on the optional Raymarine 6001+ autopilot for a bit and played with the electric Lenco tabs to see how they might compare with the hydraulic units I have on my boat. The pilot held a fairly steady course despite our sideways orientation to the seastate, and the tabs functioned superbly on two fronts. First, their response was rapid; just a tap or two produced an instantaneous result. And second, they were especially easy to keep track of; a fast glance at the row of indicator lights on the switchpads was all I needed.
We were 17 miles east of Florida’s Fort Pierce Inlet when I “pulled ‘em back.” Pursuit marketing director David Glenn, having dispensed with shoes and shirt long before Chesney had begun intoning the praises of doing so, I went aft to rig ballyhoo in the cockpit as the boat rolled in her own wash and then smoothed out. Startled, hundreds of flyingfish skittered off like silver flashes—a good sign. I went back to help Glenn wind monel around bills and leaders, and soon enough we were fishing.
Things went slowly at first. But having some downtime wasn’t all bad, since it allowed me to sit on one of the fold-up benchseats in the cockpit, watch our baits, and consider what I’d learned about the test boat so far. Glenn and I had checked her out pretty well before leaving Fort Pierce’s Harbortown Marina, and what we hadn’t been able to see there, we’d addressed later, at the nearby Pursuit plant.
Construction came to mind first. Our test boat possessed an experimental epoxy-infused hull entirely cored with perforated Baltek balsa, which the folks at Pursuit said was too “cosmetically problematic” to put on the market in the near term. Would there be a whopping difference in performance and seakeeping between such a light, rigid, ultra-strong hull and the more conventional production version Pursuit would eventually offer, with its solid-glass bottom (comprised of knitted fabrics and various AME vinylester resins) and Contourcore-cored hull sides? It seemed unlikely given the rock-solid, performance-enhancing rigidity the highly engineered, one-piece molded stringer grid would likely impart.
This article originally appeared in the February 2004 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.