During a recent Yamaha engine-testing event I got a chance to drive a 21-foot Safe Boat, a rugged center console built for the anglers of the National Geographic Channel show “Shark Men.”
Sport utility vehicles may have lost some luster with American drivers, but the production of multifunctional boats seems to be on the rise. Case in point: the new 2011 Pursuit ST 310.
With a Yamaha F70, EdgeWater’s 158CC gets 6.5 mpg at 21 mph. That’s nothing short of miserly fuel consumption for a 15-footer that should excel at towing kids on wakeboards and tubes.
You have to throttle back a lot of smaller powerboats in rough water, but RIB builder Protector says its Center Console 25 is not one of them.
Its deep-vee fiberglass hull, surrounded by wave-absorbing Hypalon inflation chambers, allows the helmsman to run at a good clip even when the wind and waves kick up, says Ralph Silverman, sales manager for Oakland, Calif.-based Protector USA Inc. “Most people use their boats when it’s sunny and flat out,” he says. “This boat in rough water can perform almost as well as it can in calm water.”
The Tibona 20’s hull-to-deck joint is bonded with a polyester putty, further bonded and sealed with 3M 5200, through-bolted and fiberglassed from the inside. Sound like overkill? Not if you want the boat to last for decades, says Dan Hollins, who recently launched his catamaran company, Tibona Boats, in Sarasota, Fla.
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