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Take a Closer Look into Powerboating at Soundings Online

The good, the bad and the ugly of design

Compromises make it important to know what to look for - and what to avoid - when comparing boats.

In my travels around the waterfront, I'm always on the lookout for the good, bad and just plain ugly in boat design. During the last few months, I've been to a number of boat shows in the United States and Canada and I'm both tickled with the positive innovations and dismayed at some of the bad ideas on display.



A 1950s boat with 21st century power

It's the best of both worlds with this 1954 Huckins - classic styling and soon to be installed modern technology.It's no small task to repower a wooden Huckins with Volvo's IPS propulsion - here's how it's being done.

If ever there was a great boat tale involving a blend of old and new technologies, this has got to be it. Take one classic 1954 Huckins motoryacht built of two layers of 3/8-inch mahogany planking laid out diagonally, screwed to oak framing and fiberglass-sheathed on the outside.



Is that repo boat really a bargain?

You can get a good deal in today's glutted market, but you also can get burned if you're not careful.

Repossessed boats can offer what seem to be amazing deals, especially with owners defaulting on loans in record numbers. Banks contract with repo firms to recover the boats and then sell them off, often at auction, to stem their losses as quickly as possible.

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Efficient cruising the Wilde way

Independence is the name of the game in Ben Wilde’s book, and the fewer hours on the genset the better

The Nordic Tug lifestyle attracts many former sailors who enjoy cruising in greater comfort for extended periods.Ben Wilde, a former sales and marketing executive in the housewares business, has carved out a niche for the last 10 years selling a unique style of boating adventure out of his waterfront location in Essex, Conn.



Production, custom or semicustom?

You get a truly unique boat with the custom route, but you’ll pay more for the one-on-one attention

Keith Herridge (left), lead mechanic at custom builder Lyman-Morse, discusses a design with project manager Michael Faller.In a more perfect world — that is, a world in which everyone is rich — custom powerboats would be the only boats built.



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