Carver 466 Page 2

Carver 466 — By Capt. Bill Pike — March 2001

Best Of The Midwest
Part 2: Carver 466 continued

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Later that afternoon I sea-trialed a 466 on Green Bay’s Fox River, where near-smooth conditions precluded any rough-water tests. Performance was lively, with an average top speed of 29.6 mph, a smooth, moderate bank in turns, and an optimum, three- to four-degree running attitude on plane with just a little tab necessary above 2500 rpm. The layout of the automotive-style dash was a savvy one, having a central pod with big Beede gauges on top, just below the Ritchie compass and rocker switches for deck equipment beneath. I liked the way the gauges were prioritized, with a rudder-angle indicator and synchronizer dead center, tachs on either side, and multifunction dials all the way outboard.

Underway, visibility forward from the bridge’s centerline helm seat was excellent, and thanks to a set of sweet, single-stick Volvo Penta electronic controls, an optional QL 10-hp bow thruster, and some decent visibility aft via a large opening under the hardtop, docking the vessel, whether alongside or stern-to, was easy. Moreover, the ride was stalwart, thanks to a robust, all-glass hull bottom (with Knytex substrates and a vinylester barrier coat), hull sides, decks, and superstructure cored with Divinycell and/or Baltek-AL-600/10, a hull-to-deck joint bonded with screws and polyurethane sealant, and aluminum truss reinforcements around the frameless cabin windows.

My dockside examination of the 466 after the test-drive confirmed what I already knew: Carver’s forte is luxury and lots of room to enjoy it. The interior layout pays homage to a floorplan that’s done good service for years: a VIP stateroom forward, master aft, and saloon/galley-down between. The goodies Carver manages to discretely merge into this expansive scheme are truly astounding.

Take the master. In addition to a raft of aircraft-type cabinets overhead, two voluminous cedar-lined hanging lockers, alcove bookcases, two integral cherry dressers with Karadon countertops, and oodles of drawer space, our test boat had a queen-size berth with innerspring mattress that lifts electrically to reveal stowage. In addition, there’s a large ensuite head with a separate, also-large stall shower, L-shape Karadon counters, and a deep, user-friendly stainless steel sink.

The saloon was equally replete. Anytime you combine a pair of Flexsteel incliner-equipped UltraLeather settees (port and starboard), with a top-shelf, built-in entertainment center (JVC TV and VCR, Harmon-Kardon AM/FM stereo/CD player, Kenwood CD changer, and Bose speakers), you’re dealing with ItotalI kick-back relaxation.

A look around the machinery spaces of the 466 took me back to what I’d seen earlier on the assembly line in Pulaski. The engine room, accessed through a hatch in the saloon sole, is gelcoated white and efficiently lit with fluorescent lights. An integrated lattice of aluminum box beams supports the weight of the sole and other componentry above. Massive, double-gusseted engine mounts are bolted through all-glass, hat-section engine bearers, with cutouts outboard for easy access. Farther astern in a lazarette accessed through hatches concealed in the master stateroom cabinetry, I examined rudder stocks actuated via indestructible-looking tiller arms of graphite composite, mounted on a beefy rudder shelf and centered in the same kind of Tides Marine dripless shaft logs as the prop shafts.

I finished up the 466 with a topside tour. While I liked the shippy appearance of the big windlass at the bow—an option from Maxwell—and the extra safety of wide side decks with thigh-high bowrails and stanchion bases welded inside and out for maximum strength, what really rang my bell was a small yet significant detail: The cleats on deck are massive—12 inches horn to horn—and run through with four big bolts and secured with thick aluminum backing plates, fender washers, and aviation-style nuts with nylon bushings. PA good job? More like a Great Lakes job, I’d say.

Carver (920) 822-3214. Fax: (920) 822-8820.

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This article originally appeared in the January 2003 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.

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