670 Convertible — By George L. Petrie
— September 2001
|Familiarity breeds respect aboard the new Bertram 670 Convertible.|
The world debut of Bertram's 670 Convertible was preceded by a thunderous ovation--literally. For a week thunder and drenching rain had soaked Great Abaco Island and the flotilla of yachts gathered there for the Bahama Billfish Challenge. I had wangled an invitation to sea trial the yacht as she made the 100-mile trip from Marsh Harbor to Paradise Island, site of the next leg of the tournament. I figured the lengthy trip would let me put the yacht through her paces in a variety of sea conditions--maybe swells from the previous day's storms or fresh chop from the next weather front moving through the islands. But it was not to be. Not only did the sky clear, but the wind also died, leaving the sea as placid as a millpond.
Even though the seas were calm, I have no doubts about the yacht's rough-water capability. She is a Bertram, after all, with a classic deep-V hull form that's indelibly associated with her name but, equally as impressive, fine-tuned to improve on her legendary predecessors. Her forefoot is sharper and deeper, with more bow reach at the stem to punch smoothly through the sea. Slightly convex sections aft should soften the ride, while chine flats that widen to 10 inches at the transom are designed to keep spray down and provide efficient lifting surfaces.
The smooth trip did provide an excellent chance to study the flow lines around the hull. Forward, in the strike zone (the area of the hull that first hits the water), oversize strakes are canted up at a 45-degree angle, and I could see how they deflected the spray into a clean sheet that washed well outboard of the chine. Aft of the strike zone, there's clean flow separation at the chine all the way back to the transom, with blue water extending well outboard of the hull, then folding into a smooth sheet of spray. The net effect was an exceptionally clean whitewash, critical to chasing down a prize tuna.
Schedule constraints prevented us from going after gamefish en route, but we did make a stop for lunch near Hole in the Wall, at the southern tip of Great Abaco. Maybe we were just lucky, or maybe the Bertram's a fish magnet, but within 20 minutes, deep jigging in 700 feet of water, we hauled in two large black grouper and an impressive pair of yellow-eye. We were back underway so quickly I barely had time to take in all the features of the 168-square-foot cockpit.
This article originally appeared in the January 2003 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.