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A new Seaton passagemaker

Steve Seaton has designed hundreds of boats over the last 35 years, from sailboats to high-performance powerboats. However, many of his best-known boats are trawlers and long-range cruising powerboats.

Steve Seaton has designed hundreds of boats over the last 35 years, from sailboats to high-performance powerboats. His Ocala, Fla., office has produced custom, semicustom and production designs as big as 200 feet. However, many of his best-known boats are trawlers and long-range cruising powerboats.

A new chapter began about a year ago with the formation of Seaton Yachts, a new boatbuilding firm that incorporates Seaton Design. Seaton teamed up with fellow industry veterans Capt. John Clayman, formerly of Ted Hood’s Little Harbor Yachts and Portsmouth Marine, and L.E. “Nick” Nicholson, editor at large of Practical Sailor, to start the new company.

Seaton Yachts, whose main office is in the Newport (R.I.) Shipyard, specializes in the design and construction of cruising powerboats. And the company expects its customers to use their boats, as they’ve done with Seaton’s designs for years.

“These boats are not intended to be marina queens,” says Clayman, who serves as president of Seaton Yachts in Newport. Although the company is new, Clayman points out that Seaton’s designs have made many circumnavigations. In addition to custom designs, Seaton has drawn up Delta, Northern Marine and Cheoy Lee vessels, among others.

One of the first boats from Seaton Yachts is the Expedition Sixty, an offshore passagemaker with a fiberglass hull and superstructure that is designed to be operated and maintained by a cruising couple. Stainless steel and Awlgrip give the boat a “yachty” look without the need for varnished teak on deck, Clayman says, to give owners more time to enjoy their destinations. The interior has a “megayacht-quality” finish, he says.

The Expedition Sixty sports a three-stateroom, two-head layout. The full-beam master suite is placed amidships and includes a large private head and shower compartment to starboard, walkaround island berth, hanging locker, bureau, settee and flat-screen television. One guest stateroom is placed forward and the other abaft it to port, with the guest head compartment to starboard.

The pilothouse, above the master stateroom, is outfitted with a centerline helm chair, companion chair, L-shaped dinette and a pilot berth. Abaft the pilothouse and down a set of stairs is the saloon, laid out with a large L-shaped dinette, straight settee, and the U-shaped galley forward. The galley comes equipped with full-size appliances, including a stainless steel gas stove and a Sub-Zero refrigerator/freezer. Outside the saloon area are full walkaround side decks with bulwarks.

The flybridge, atop the pilothouse, has helm and companion chairs, an L-shaped dinette, refrigerator/icemaker, and a dumbwaiter from the galley. The aft deck has a mast and space for dinghy and tender storage.

Amenities and comforts aside, the boat is designed to cross oceans. Available with a bulbous or conventional bow, the Expedition Sixty carries 4,100 gallons of fuel for a range of 2,250 nautical miles at 10 knots. Throttle back to 7.54 knots, and the range increases to 5,690 nautical miles. Her top speed is 10.93 knots with a 455-hp John Deere diesel.

“The typical profile of people who have Seatons built is someone who does not want to be constrained or limited by the range or seaworthiness of their boat, and wants comfort at sea, too,” says Clayman. The boat is intended to appeal to the “seasoned yachtsman,” he adds.

She has a double bottom, watertight compartments with separate bilge pumps, and an engine-driven emergency bilge pump. “The equipment that’s on the 60-footer is even commercial grade,” says Clayman, citing the standard on-deck fire station. “This is a whole different class of boat than what’s available on a production basis.”

The Expedition Sixty is built by Global Yacht Builders of Kaohsiung, Taiwan. Clayman says the boat’s $2.4 million price includes everything needed for cruising the world in safety and comfort, such as navigation, communication and entertainment electronics; a 15-foot Nautica tender; all safety gear; and tools and spares.

For those interested in something on a smaller scale, Seaton Yachts is developing a line of semidisplacement coastal cruisers.


LOA: 61 feet, 10 inches

BEAM: 20 feet, 4 inches

DRAFT: 6 feet, 2 inches

DISPLACEMENT: 159,800 pounds

HULL TYPE: displacement

TANKAGE: 4,100 gallons fuel, 1,100 gallons water, 500 gallons waste ENGINE: single 455-hp John Deere diesel

SPEED: 11 knots top, 10 knots cruise

PRICE: $2.4 million

CONTACT: Seaton Yachts, Newport, R.I.

Phone: (401) 851-2002.