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Author Articles

by Capt. Grant Rafter

Outer Reef 86 Yachtfish

By Capt. Grant Rafter | Posted October 2009 | Add a Comment

A - A 6-kW Furuno radar with a four-foot array displays on 10-inch monitors in both the pilot≠house and flying bridge. B - You can launch the Novurania 430?DL using the 2000-pound capacity Brower davit with wire≠less remote. C - Sleep easy with a 105-pound CQR plow holding you in place. The anchor is attached to 350' of 1/2"

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Warwick 55-meter Motoryacht

By Capt. Grant Rafter | Posted August 2009 | Add a Comment

You expect to see innovation all over a new boat, but in the placement of the deck furniture? Well, even standard features such as this got a rethink on this 55-meter (180-foot) design from Warwick Yachts. The New Zealand builder cast off the typical centerline bench-style settee on the aft deck in favor of two C-shape settees in the corners of the bulwarks. The

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Sessa C43

By Capt. Grant Rafter | Posted August 2009 | Add a Comment

Sometimes looks aren’t deceiving. This boat really is fast.Italian builders are well known for their stylish exterior lines and opulent interiors, but because of that people sometimes assume that these builders have neglected other things—like performance. Sessa’s C43 stops such conjectures

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Parts & Labor

By Capt. Grant Rafter | Posted August 2009 | Add a Comment

Wesmac builds classic downeast vessels like the 42-footers ChristineWe’re doing quite well,” says Wesmac owner and founder Steve Wessel from his office up in Surry, Maine, just a short drive from Bar Harbor. “It’s been extremely busy.” He’d just come back from Cape Cod, where’d he’d been giving a new owner an ins-and-outs

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100 Largest Yachts 2009 #23: Dubawi

By Capt. Grant Rafter | Posted July 2009 | Add a Comment

World’s 100 Largest Yachts 2009Dubawi | 297'2"A lot of effort goes into any refit, but converting a 20-year-old passenger ship that’s six decks tall and just one yard short of a football field into a private yacht is one serious undertaking. That’s exactly

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100 Largest Yachts 2009 #12: Dilbar

By Capt. Grant Rafter | Posted July 2009 | Add a Comment

DEBUT: Dilbar -- 360'9" ( tie )Known as project Opal during her construction, Dilbar launched in 2008. Since then she’s often been mistaken for other yachts by amateur yachtspotters, most often the same-named number 94 on our list, which was launched by Oceanco in 2005. Interestingly, both vessels had the same interior designer,

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American Custom Yachts 90

By Capt. Grant Rafter | Posted July 2009 | Add a Comment

Back in 1989, Monterey Marine, which became American Custom Yachts (ACY), launched a vessel named Renegade. At 80 feet LOA, her displacement was a mere 120,000 pounds, even with twin 7,000-hp MTU diesels that each weighed nearly seven tons. She reportedly reached a top speed of 55.9 mph (48.6 knots), and claimed the title of world’s fastest sportfisherman.Now ACY is at it again.

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Whistler

By Capt. Grant Rafter | Posted July 2009 | Add a Comment

Photo by Billy BlackA fast, coastal Maine-built cruiser with exquisite detailing.Dubbed Whistler, Lyman-Morse’s newest custom build slipped into the St. Georges River in Thomaston, Maine, on a nippy, gray Thursday in late May. On her inaugural run she reportedly reached a top speed of

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Flexiteek

By Capt. Grant Rafter | Posted July 2009 | Add a Comment

My general feeling is that fake decking is the nautical equivalent of vinyl siding: a low-cost substitute that weathers well but will never be the aesthetic equivalent of the real thing. That said, I must admit that Flexiteek is better than real teak in a few key ways. For one, it’s lighter. And, according to the manufacturer, it never needs to be oiled

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ICOM IC-M36

By Capt. Grant Rafter | Posted June 2009 | Add a Comment

The latest addition to Icom’s lineup of handheld VHFs is the IC-M36, a waterproof, floating radio with a couple of extra features specifically intended to minimize the effect of background noise. One is a noise-cancellation system similar to those found on headphones from Sony and Bose. A second microphone on the back of the radio picks up background noise, which

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