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Weapon of Choice

I.TIS THE SEASON: Long ago and far away I used to work a dozen or more boat shows a year, all around planet earth. That, plus monthly trips to Istanbul, left me in a near-constant state of jet lag. It all came back to me when, preparing for the coming boat show season, I rediscovered this great video – Weapon of Choice, by Fatboy Slim. That great hoofer Christopher Walken brought back to me the thrills and chills of  a peripatetic life. You’re gonna wanna wait for the ethereal Botticelli-like sailboat scene at the end:

Now I’m just pleasantly working a couple of local shows each year. Two are coming up:

  • The Newport Boat Show from September 15th through the 18th
  • The Norwalk Boat Show from September 22nd through the 25th

In truth, I never got tired of the boat show circuit. I used to particularly love the Annapolis Show, in part because of the incredibly complicated logistics it takes to put it together (the show has to put in and remove their own docks each year).

One of the best times I know is to book a room at the Marriott overlooking the show, and stay one extra day to watch the epic closing party. Here’s the sailboat version:

The Newport Boat Show is no less difficult to set up. I give the show organizers great  credit for shoe-horning in nine figures worth of boats, and making it look easy. As you’ll see on the bottom of this map, we will have three, countem, three jet boats next to the Black Pearl Restaurant (and our brand-spanking-new Hunt 72):

NIBS 2016 HH8.19 copy

 

Our largest offering will be the Talaria 43:

t43c

I’ve been watching this great video of a T43 underway. It draws me back to last week’s review in The Fog Warning of C. Raymond Hunt’s biography, A Genius at his Trade. I’ve become quite conscious of Hunt’s unique ability to look at a static, two dimensional drawing but perfectly picture what marine architects call the “laminar flow” of water over a hull.  This video highlights that flow. Keep your eye on the waterline, that spot where “the rubber hits the road,” so to speak. Note the almost complete lack of turbulence as she cuts through the water. This is what good naval architecture looks like, loyal readers:

If you want to see the T43 (and who wouldn’t?) she will only be at the Newport Show, not Norwalk. So, you snooze, you lose.

Our second offering will be our ever-so-popular Picnic Boat MK III.

Take a moment and  look back at my Newport dock diagram, above. Think about the scratch-potential of moving a fine yacht into one of those tight slips. But this clip of a MK III shows why it’s just not a big deal:

Pretty easy, huh? How about in a more challenging environment?

We’ve kept a Talaria 34 Pilothouse over in the Shinnecock Canal all summer. It’s a superb location, because to the south the Atlantic Ocean is just a few minutes away. Or head north, past Orient Point,  to quickly enter Block Island Sound.

Photo19_Shin_Canal

But the tidal difference between the Shinnecock and Peconic Bays is a couple of feet, so sometimes, depending upon the phase of moon, the current can really rip down the canal.  It’s really more like a swift river at times, and docking a prop’ed boat (after all, it takes six hands to maneuver a double throttle/double gearshift/double bow thruster yacht!) takes skill plus luck.  But to achieve the docking ease shown in the above video in a ripping canal all you have to do is increase your RPM by about 15% and use your jetstick normally. Trust me,  she will obey!

Lastly, our new and much-buzzed-about Talaria 34R.

34rc

We just sold one to a knowledgable Hinckley owner (his third!) and when you see her at the shows you’ll understand why.

I’ve posted this particular video before, and probably will again. I just can’t get enough of the soundtrack’s baritone saxophone!

So that’s our Newport Fleet. Come see us, and to quote Fatboy Slim and Christopher Walken, find your Weapon of Choice!

 

II. The Gorilla in the Room (Redux)

Longtime readers  will remember my earlier blog (found on the home page as “My Original Blog). Over a span of four years that blog grew to have over 4,000 regular readers. I am really excited to report that The Fog Warning, in jut a few short months,  is now closing in on 1,000 regular readers. Thank you, one an all, for your support. It means a lot to me.

I’ve been averaging about a dozen insightful comments from loyal readers each posting. But last week’s posting (The Gorilla in the Room, about the true costs of yacht ownership) brought in over 40 responses, from as far away as Argentina. My favorite comment, however cryptic, came in from a Silicon Valley quant guy I’ve known for quite a while:

“Hmmm. Reduce #1 expense of boat ownership by 50%. Like it.”

Oh, that I could write with such eloquent economy!

III. A BROKERAGE OPPORTUNITY

This is big – I now have a 2013 Talaria 48 for sale in my backyard, so to speak. Meet me in Westchester and I promise you an eye-opening walkthrough. The circumstances of her sale are unique. Call me quick, and I’ll fill you in.

Here’s the listing:

http://www.hinckleyyachts.com/Brokerage/boat_detail.php?id=5902877

Hurricane Hermine is making some noises today in Sag Harbor, where I keep my trawler. So I’m off to check her lines and to add some chafe protection. So ciao for now, peoples of the world. And remember, Newport Boat Show – Be there or be square!

Enjoy.

Big Wave Dave

PS: The descriptions of C. Raymond Hunt’s genius in picturing water flow over a hull form reminded me of something, and it took a couple of days for me to put it together. Which is quite strange, because it’s a scene from my own novel-in-progress! Here’s the quote:

Hardened sailors on the circuit could be tough to keep up with, party-wise. But there was talk all that summer of some young black girl tearing up the docks and clubs every night of Key West Race Week. And after just a few minutes racing with Dawn it was clear to Tommy that she sailed exactly as she lived – wild, raw, and undisciplined.

Of course there was more to racing than speed. His dad had taught him it took focus, discipline, and tactics. But he couldn’t deny that Dawn had a brilliant feel for the wind. For her a breeze had an almost physical mass, and he sensed that she saw wind over water the way Van Gogh saw it over open fields; as colorful waves of swirling, airborne streams. 

She certainly had the intensity of an Olympic competitor. The story came up from Key West weeks before she arrived in Maine – trailing by twenty seconds around the final mark, she had slammed the wheel in frustration. Every crew within a quarter mile could hear her scream at the fitful wind: “Come on you motherfucker, give it to me!”

She broke two bones in her hand. And won the race by six seconds.

Our commitment to carbon neutal emission standards that apply to yachts.

The Gorilla in the Room

Two wonderful book recommendations this week, loyal readers. Their common theme is … genius!

This first book jumped out at me from a glowing review in the Wall Street Journal earlier this year: The Making of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, by Piers Bizony. This is a stunning coffee table book, ingeniously packaged in its own symbolic “monolith” box. While I didn’t splurge, a larger four-volume version (autographed by Mrs. Kubrick) is available in a limited edition run of 500 for $1,500. If you buy that one, lunch is on me.

kubrick_2001_a_space_odyssey_ce_image026_03109_1404091009_id_757042

 

Stanley Kubrick’s genius was that he came up with the visual style of the film long before he even had the the story. He commissioned a series of magnificent paintings (the heart of this book) before the script was even written:

 

2001a

 

Despite tremendous pressure to cut corners from the banks and studios that financed the film, he remained true to his vision right through to his final edit. It’s quite an inspiring story.

It’s also full of wonderful movie trivia, including this fact: In 1969 the Academy Awards did not nominate Space Odyssey for Best Costume Design, despite its riveting portrayals of early man, allegedly because they believed the “actors” were real apes.

I’ll leave it for you to decide:

2001pic

http://www.tcm.com/mediaroom/video/474162/2001-A-Space-Odyssey-Movie-Clip-Monolith.html

And this, in my own whimsical and idiosyncratic way, brings me to the heart of  the matter, to the gorilla in the room, to the concept so often left unexplored in our industry:

Depreciation.

You won’t hear “the D-word” much at boat shows, for obvious reasons. And googling the concept won’t provide you with any accurate and authoritative data. For reasons that run from the obscure to the obvious, there is no reliable Kelly’s Blue Book of yacht values. Some surveyors and brokers offer their opinion on the matter, usually throwing out an anecdotal “10% a year for the first five years”.  But they don’t tell you how they got there. So I took a crack at it.

Yachtworld has an industry-insider database called “SoldBoats.” A subscriber can, for example, see the sale prices of every brokerage Riva 33 sold in the USA for the last five years. If you can determine the original sale prices, you’re most of the way towards knowing the true cost of yacht ownership. No matter what builder (and continent) you choose, I urge you to ask your broker to take you through their version of this analysis. Be forewarned, sometimes this journey takes courage!

Looking at the usual suspects for the last few years (from Italian, Asian and American builders)  I come up with an average annual depreciation rate of:

 11.3%.

Ouch.

And the Hinckley experience, you may well ask?

Well, I was prompted to go down this path two weeks ago when I got the full report of the sale of a three-year old Hinckley Talaria 43.

Hinckley Talaria 43

 Hinckley Talaria 43

Her total depreciation came to a shocking 7.14%. On an annual basis that’s just :

 2.38%

However compelling an anecdote that is, I didn’t want to hang my hat on a single data point. So I sit here today with a boatload (lol) of rock-hard data about every brokerage Picnic Boat Mark III sold since the spring of 2011.

mkiii

Twenty-three of them found new owners, after having been owned for between 12 and 87 months. I was stunned by the median annual depreciation rate:

5.1%

What is going on here?

My theory, as we have been discovering together for the last few months at The Fog Warning, is that there is an ever-reinforcing value proposition here at Hinckley. If you go back and read through my last five or six blog postings, the ingredients of a recipe are revealed:

  • Start with a classic and unwavering aesthetic discipline
  • Add to it substantial investments in design, engineering, and technology to produce the safest and most versatile use possible
  • Build it so well that you can confidently offer a lifetime hull and deck warranty 
  • Offer stem-to-stern annual service packages to owners and buyers who have a unique and enduring appreciation for iconic yachts.

Stir well and serve immediately to get:

VALUE

That qualitative and quantitative value bakes in the lowest depreciation rate, and the lowest cost-of-ownership plan I know. So put it this way, if you can buy a new yacht that retains 92.9% of its value three years later, I’ll ask you to do two things: first, call me to verify the numbers. Second, rush to contract.

 

OK, book #2:

huntdesign

I haven’t read many biographies that I would characterize as thrilling (although I’m reading one about spy novelist John Le Carre right now that comes close) but I think most boaters will find  A Genius at his Trade a thrilling read.

I’m going to quote Joseph Gibbons here from his review in Maine Boats and Harbors magazine:

To call Ray Hunt an Archimedes doesn’t seem wide of the mark. The Greek philosopher—inventor of the screw propeller, explainer of the principles of leverage, conceiver of the laws of displacement of fluids while taking a bath—saw more clearly into the physical world than other men. C. Raymond Hunt (“C” for Charles) was like that, too. The New England sailor and designer was father or godfather to the deep-vee powerboat, the ubiquitous 13′ and 16′ Boston Whalers, the Concordia yawls, the modern spinnaker, the amidships cockpit sloop, the lively 110 and 210 day-racers, an improved destroyer hull design for the U.S. Navy, world-beating 5.5-Meter yachts, and perhaps scores more of boats and boat developments that were left unfinished in the creative ferment of his life, were taken up by others, or remain to be discovered.

I’ve highlighted Joseph’s comment about Hunt’s “creative ferment” because I see how it lives on today at Hunt Yachts. As they say on their website:

“Along with Hunt Design Associates, we have benefitted greatly from the design heritage of Ray Hunt and are proud to count his grandson, Ray Hunt III among our engineering team. Our company was founded on C. Raymond Hunt’s design principles, specifically the innovative, deep-v hull that still sets Hunt Yachts apart today.”

I am so pleased and excited to tell you today that I can show  the results of this esteemed heritage at the Newport Boat Show this September. Just say the word, and I’ll introduce you to Ray and the entire design team, and provide you with a personal and private tour of the brand new Hunt 72:

IMG_0082

                                                                  34 knots? 34 knots!

hunt72c

hunt72c

                                           Hunt 72 – Photo Courtesy of Hunt Yachts

Please feel free to take me up on all that I have offered you here today. You know the drill – Just launch a flare!

Oh, one last thing – Do you recall last week’s “snoozeagram” about the sudden availability of a mid-build Picnic Boat MK III? Well, it sold, in just a matter of days. As I’m known to say from time to time:

You snooze, you lose!

Thanks, and enjoy.

Big Wave Dave

 

 

 

You snooze, you lose!

I. A Very Rare Opportunity – 

I used to be known for a particular phrase in this biz (and no, not launch a flare, which I still delight in using). This other phrase had travelled far enough around that boaters I’d never met would quote it to me at boat shows:

You snooze, you lose!

It came from my self-titled snoozeagrams, my leaks that a rare deal – a leftover model, perhaps – was there to be had for the smart and the swift.

I didn’t think I’d have an opportunity to launch any snoozeagrams here at Hinckley Yachts,  because Hinckley’s are only built to order. But for a single demo boat every now and again (our 34R, this year) if you want a yacht, we’re happy to build her for you, carefully and efficiently. But there are none, so to speak, sitting on a shelf somewhere, snoozeagram-worthy.

Until now.

Due to a mid-build cancellation, we have a brand new Picnic Boat Mk III splashing in just five weeks at our Maine factory. While you can choose the fabrics (if you hurry) she will look very much like this:

Photo courtesy of Hinckley Yachts

Photo courtesy of Hinckley Yachts

This work of nautical art needs an owner, and it should be you. She is an exceedingly well-equipped model, with upgraded Volvo 435’s (37 knots top end, as opposed to the standard Yanmar 370’s 34 knots) as well as air conditioning and a 9KW generator.

Here I will rely on my old  friend Ken Kreisler to take you though the joy and wonder of a MK III:

The specifications and selected options list is lengthy, and I’d be happy to navigate it with you line by line. But as I’ve said, this is a rare opportunity, and I don’t expect her to sit around long.

So, you’ve been warned – You snooze, you lose!

 

II.  A Thing of Beauty

I live in Westhampton Beach and work in Southampton. I keep a flats boat in Noyak, and my trawler in Sag Harbor. I’m very lucky to get around a good bit, exploring every creek, cut and bay over thirty miles of the Hamptons. And because Hinckley shallow draft jet boats can go “where no man has gone before” (that PB MK III mentioned in my snoozeagram floats in just 25″ of water) I often find them tucked away in pristine and beautiful spots.

That’s how I met an owner of another MK III, when I poled up a shallow creek in search of some striped bass earlier this season. He keeps his yacht at his dock, and she is indeed beautiful. I’m happy to say that we’ve become fishing buddies (he can cast a fly halfway to Portugal – it’s a thing of beauty).

He called me from Europe the other day, asking if I could run over to check on his boat, as On Watch advised him that his MK III had lost AC power.

On Watch is Hinckley’s proprietary remote monitoring system. It wirelessly reports to both the owner and our service team, in real time, the status of all mission-critical systems aboard a Hinckley.

You met Scott Bryant a few postings ago – he’s head of New Product Development at Hinckley. Here he is introducing the On Watch phenomenon:

 

Its a great and useful bit of technology. And my fishing buddy? The boat was fine. But he had lost shorepower, dockside. I flipped the breaker back on, and when he returns home he’ll find his Sancerre still chilled. A thing of beauty, that On Watch!

 

III. “R” Word

As you’ve been reading, I’ve been running our new Talaria 34R every chance I get. It’s been sometimes mistaken locally for her bigger sister, the 38R (perhaps because there are five 38R’s in Sag Harbor alone).

I’ve been asked a few times to compare the two boats, and this week Hinckley put this great pic up on their Facebook page. It says it much better than I can:

Photo courtesy of Hinckley Yachts

Photo courtesy of Hinckley Yachts

Obviously that’s the 38R up top, with the 34R to starboard. Two Hunt Yacht offerings round out the fleet.

A better understanding of the differences between the 38 and the 34 (their performance envelopes, ergonomics, etc.) are beyond the scope of this posting. Just launch a flare, and we’ll meet on a boat ASAP to discuss.

 

IV. And Now a Word From our Sponsor

Stay tuned for my next report, entitled “The Gorilla in the Room.” Here’s a hint of things to come:

 

Ciao for now, fellow boaters.

 

Big Wave Dave

Living the hug 

I have a haddock (II)

I. Headache-free Ownership – Yes, I’m opening this post the same way I closed the last one. If you laughed last week, get ready to laugh some more:

Why, you may ask,  all this talk about headaches in what is supposed to be a yachting blog?

A bunch of years ago I sold a dealer demo to a knowledgeable New England yachtsman. It was a stunning 54′ “downeast” design, but after moving her up and down the east coast boat show circuit she definitely had some wear and tear on her.

My client loved her classic lines, but he was concerned about the quality of his ownership experience. I’ve always remembered his comment:

Dave, I will buy a yacht. I won’t buy a headache!

We all get that. When the most valuable of assets is our quality leisure time, who has time for headaches? The truth is that when you’re not aboard your boat only two nautical concerns should cross your cerebral cortex from time to time:

1) Did I tie her up properly?

2) Is the holding tank empty?

And that’s it!

Which brings me to Hinckley.

I was happily retired when Hinckley called me last Spring.  As much as anything, what got me to “yes” was that I shared Hinckley’s philosophy of boat ownership. More specifically, I wanted to know what it was like to work for the only vertically integrated company in the biz.

Vertical Integration, downeast style? That’s easy – Beginning to end, and top to bottom

  • Hinckley designs and builds them;
  • I sell them (um, that would be to you, loyal reader);
  • Hinckley wraps their headache-free service plan around you; and, someday,
  • Hinckley sells you out of your boat, and most probably into another Hinckley.

The key to it all is their “haddock-free” service plan. Here’s how it works:

Hinckley has six service yards up and down the east coast:

  • Southwest Harbor, Maine
  • Portsmouth, Rhode Island
  • Oxford, Maryland (my fave, and not only for the homemade strawberry ice cream at the Oxford General Store)
  • Savannah, Georgia
  • Stuart, Florida, and
  • Naples, Florida

The method to their madness is that wherever you are, from a short vacation cruise all the way up to that great seasonal north/south migration, Hinckley is there for you.

Each yard is staffed with Hinckley trained and managed service teams, tied into their Service HQ in RI and the factory in Maine. Their build and service records of your specific boat are exhaustive,  from the time the hull was molded right through to last winter’s winterization (Yes, I see that at delivery your shower hot water was set too hot, and we changed the mixer valve and tuned it down, as you requested). And with employees who have been working for them for decades, you can often talk to the very carpenter who mounted your mother-in-law’s heirloom mirror on your starboard bulkhead.

What underlies this no-headache approach  is Hinckley’s Jet Boat Service Package. This is an all-inclusive option that provides you with fully predictable ownership expenses and dependable quality outcomes.

Hinckley’s captains can pick up your boat at your dock and bring it to the nearest service facility for winter storage. They will assign a dedicated experienced Service Manager for her stay. On arrival he will manage:

  • A sea trial;
  • The inspection;
  • The haul out and winterization;
  • Any recommended annual maintenance;
  • Any warranty work, or equipment upgrades you can imagine; and,
  • Bottom painting, including the jets, inside and out.

Then, come spring, they will commission her and bring her back to your dock, ready for another headache-free season.

It is a remarkable package. It also provides (as will be covered at length in one of my next posts) rock-solid support of your re-sale value, if and when that time comes. Stay tuned for that eye-opening discussion.

And oh, of course, they can do your varnish for you as well, to Hinckley’s famous  standards.

I feel this last bit of context is important, loyal readers, so put on your PFD and focus your Steiner’s:

Looking back over my posts to date, I’ve noticed that without any great plan in mind one theme keeps popping up: VALUE. Whether it’s in the design, construction, technology, and now the service, it’s dawned on me that there is a strong value quotient built into these fine yachts. I didn’t know that before I got here, and it is a gratifying thing to learn.

What is that value worth to you? You’ll have to answer that question yourself. But I look forward to helping you come up with that answer, so (you know the drill) just launch a flare!

What I can provide you with is the cost, so just ask. At the end of a long and wonderful (haddock-free) day on the water I think you’ll conclude that the value provided is greater than the cost paid.

And really now, how often in yachting (and life) do we trip over that?

II. Talaria 48 Flybridge MK II

Nauticexpo

This is exciting! There has been a redesign of Hinckley’s 48FB, now called the Mark II. She now has a galley-up option (I love galley-ups – who wants to work in the dungeon?) and some way-cool technological improvements. I’ll devote a lot of time to this yacht in future posts, but for the moment you can read a little about it here (and enjoy the great virtual walk-through):

http://info.hinckleyyachts.com/t48-mkii

An in-depth video review of the 48 MK I, done by my old friend at Power & Motoryacht magazine’s Ken Kreisler (interviewing my new friend, Hinckley’s COO Mike Arietta!) is worth five minutes of your time. Just trust me on this one:

http://www.nauticexpo.com/prod/hinckley/product-20663-292086.html

 

III. T34

Last weekend I was thrilled to do a sea trial of our T34 Pilothouse for a client up on the North Fork. He was nice enough to snap this pic (like my Hawaiian shirt?) as I pulled away (sideways, by jetstick, of course):

t34dm

In what is a very rare development for us (Hinckley’s business plan is almost entirely “build to order”) I’ve got a 2016 T34 ready to deliver to you right now! Here is the full listing, and just launch a flare if you want the inside scoop. I’ll even throw in a Hawaiian shirt:

http://www.yachtworld.com/boats/2016/Hinckley-Talaria-34-2992426/Portsmouth/RI/United-States#.V5_NDBFdaXS

 

IV. Montauk

You will recall that I had two Hinckley’s at our Westchester event last month. I loved that, as it felt like our own private mini-boatshow. I loved it so much that we are doing it again! In Montauk, no less!

From Friday, August 26th through Monday the 29th I will have a Talaria 29r,

Talaria 29R

and the (yes, available) 2016 T34 Pilothouse mentioned above:

t34interior

This is a wonderful opportunity to see two fine yachts in a glorious setting, the Montauk Lake Club!

mlc2.

You can read all about the Lake Club here:

http://montauklakeclub.com

And you can register for the event here:

http://info.hinckleyyachts.com/new-southampton-office-hamptons-mag?utm_source=August+Buzz+2016&utm_campaign=August+Buzz+2016&utm_medium=email

Montauk in late August is a busy place. I recommend you register like they used to vote in Chicago – Early and often!

This was a long one, folks. Thanks for sticking with me to the end. I hope to see you in Montauk, and I’ll look for you on the water.

Thanks, and enjoy!

Big Wave Dave

From Yacht to Ship

I. Running the Race – 

Our Hinckley Experience event in Sag Harbor last weekend was much fun, but I will admit I worked my ass off!  When it was over I was pleased to have time to play – by taking our Talaria 34R from Sag Harbor to Hinckley’s yard in Portsmouth, RI. That’s 56 nautical miles, and it was a blast.

You can click on this twelve second selfie video (called G Major, for reasons that will be made clear in a minute), made as I jetted through The Race at 30 knots. We’ve all seen The Race in much tougher conditions, but I think the universe decided to grant me an easy trip. Thirty comfortable knots was a real treat!

G Major

A couple of points: My daughter’s boating friends call me Safety Dave. It’s a bit of an obsession for me, and it colors all of my boating values. Case in point, you’ll note in the video that I’m wearing an offshore-level inflatable PFD. Day or night, if I’m running boats alone, it’s on. Tucked into its’ folds are a mini-epirb locator and a really good knife. If I could find a small enough waterproof VHF with decent battery life, I’d hide that in there too.

Secondly, if you are wondering what was playing through those headphones, it’s the recording that Steve Jobs said almost caused him to abandon his life-long atheism. For me, all I’ll say is that for that great day on the water my personal soundtrack was …. transporting.

 

II. And then…

I pulled into the Hinckley/Hunt docks in RI, and this enormous destroyer-like bow loomed over me:

 

Just Splashed Hunt 72

She’s the latest splash of Hunt Yachts’ Ocean Series – the 72, just a few short weeks from her turnover to her experienced owner. Walking under her prow I had two nautical epiphanies. The first was:

So this is where a vessel crosses the line from yacht to ship!

Crossing that line ain’t just about size. We’ve all been aboard big boats that we wouldn’t take across the Gulf of Maine in heavy fog. Or across the wind-against-Gulf Stream to Bimini. Maybe the simplest way to define that line is where design and implementation come together to deliver safety and comfort in big waters.

My second epiphany? Walking up and down her dock, looking at her from every angle, I couldn’t get past this feeling:

This is an American ship!

She may have been built in Asia, but to my eye, C. Raymond Hunt Associates designed a ship that has a fundamentally American look. No one would mistake it for a European design, or Asian, or even a Canadian design. It is 100% American in look and feel. I don’t see enough of that anymore with big boats, and I was glad to experience that welcome feeing again.

I’ve been doing offshore Design/Build’s for most of my career. They can be tricky. But I could tell in just a couple of hours that Hunt Yachts’ succeeded with their Ocean Series

(IMPORTANT CAVEAT: I haven’t run her yet. But after talking to the delivery team, I’d be surprised to be surprised).

How does a creation like this come to pass? In my experience it’s when:

  • There is a clear and unambiguous merger of the  the owner’s vision with that of the design team,
  • fluently translated by an American company for a skilled foreign yard,
  • and supported by a two-continent management structure that preserves quality, maintains costs, and sticks to its planned schedule.

If it were easy, everyone would do it.

They don’t.

It’s crystal clear to me (reserving final judgement till I run her) that Hunt does.

And, most strikingly,  Hunt Yachts has the people, practices, and management to deliver you a yacht exactly like this one in twelve months, for seven figures less than you might expect.

I’d like to repeat that, because ….. it bears repeating? Hunt Yachts has the people, practices, and management to deliver you a yacht exactly like this one in twelve months, for seven figures less than you might expect.

It just quickens my pulse.  Perhaps yours as well. If you would like in-depth, substantive information  about the why, the what and the how much, well then I’ll just quote James Taylor here:

Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall, all you gotta do is call….

So now let’s look at this ship, circling around my pet themes of  safety and comfort.

I got a substantive tour from my friend Peter Van Lancker, President of Hunt Yachts:

Life boat material

While Peter and I have swum in the same seas for over 20 years, we only really got to know each other this year. It feels longer, perhaps because so many people I trust in the marine biz trust him. He reminds me of a line from my novel (which I really hope to finish this year):

There are only two kinds of people in this world – Those you want in your liferaft, and those you don’t.

You want Peter in your life raft.  I’m assuming his survival skills are high. But mostly I’d want him around for his attitude and temperament. Go up to RI and meet Peter, have him walk you through this latest delivery. Trust me, you will enjoy him, and her.

Anyway, the sexy photos first, and then I’ll bore you with my technical comments. Here is a panoramic walk thru of the living areas:

https://maps.gstatic.com/intl/en_us/mapfiles/cb/mspp/pano_viewer.html?panoid=kuTxEDj_B4AAAAQvOuct7Q

And here is the simply stunning flybridge:

https://maps.gstatic.com/intl/en_us/mapfiles/cb/mspp/pano_viewer.html?panoid=vWtXzeBqSnQAAAQvOuct7w

See why I call her a ship? For me she is a get-there-and-back vessel. Everything I could find was over-built to do exactly that. Some examples:

Massive Cleats

All deck hardware is oversized. That isn’t as unusual as it used to be, fortunately. But when the winds are howling, it ain’t so much the cleats as what backs them. On the Hunt 72 I saw that all are over-backed and over-bedded. For anyone who doubts that cleats can pull out, I urge you to walk any New England coast after a nor’easter. You’ll find lots of this:

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Hinckley, by the way, does a spectacular job of backing-and-bedding with their jet boats as well. In a future post I’ll comment upon their high-tech backing plates. Very, very impressive. I’m doing a windlass upgrade on my trawler at the end of this season, and I’m going to do my best to do it in the Hinckley way.

Anyway, howzabout this viewing port, which I found under the master bunk?

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My first comment was what the hell? A bulletproof inspection port, looking at …. nothing?  I looked down through it, and saw only the bottom of the boat.   Peter explained:

“Dave, everyone runs aground. It’s just a matter of when. If you hit a reef on our boat, the probable impact point is visible through this port. You can quickly get a handle on how badly you’ve grounded. And if it’s advisable to back her off yourself or call for help.”

Brilliant!

Speaking of brilliant, whenever I’m at a boat show, exploring down below on multi-deck boats, this thought drives me nuts:

Why would anyone get into something they can’t get out of?

So here are the opening ports in the 72’s master cabin:

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They are large enough that in an emergency (or, as has happened twice in my boating life, you sheepishly get locked down below) you can safely exit. I leave it to your imagination, but this is not a little thing.

Parenthetically, I had a particular fondness for this space in the engine room. I believe that every ship should have a dedicated tool bench, with a beefy vice. Someone once defined cruising as sailing from port to port, rebuilding your pumps. Hey, lets face it – stuff breaks offshore. Pardon the less-than-artful repetition here, but when you need to get home in serious conditions, serious boats need a serous place to fix stuff:

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I’ll have a lot more to say in future posts about Hunt’s Ocean series, the advantages and mechanics of their design/build process, and exactly what the skilled design team at C. Raymond Hunt bring to the table. But as I think you can tell, I truly, madly fell in love with this American ship!

And those 30 knots I did through The Race on the Talaria 34R? This one does that with ease, through conditions much tougher than what I saw last week.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

III. Our Next Hinckley Event

As I said above, last week’s Experience Hinckley event in Sag Harbor was a blast. I am following it up with an event in Rye, for all my NYC and Westchester clients. It will be a wonderful  cocktail party brought to you by Hinckley Yachts and the luxury realtors at Houlihan Lawrence.

On Thursday, July 21st, from 4 till 8pm we will be displaying a Hinckley Talaria 29R:

Photo Courtesy of Hinckley Yachts

Photo Courtesy of Hinckley Yachts

and a Talaria 34 Pilothouse:

HinckleyT34_1024w

 

The venue for this wonderful event will be this spectacular waterfront estate in Rye (note the owner’s 29R at his dock):

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I’m excited about this, and you can be too! Your invitation can be found at:

http://info.hinckleyyachts.com/westchester-2016?utm_source=July+Buzz+2016&utm_campaign=July+Buzz+2016&utm_medium=email

I do look forward to seeing you there (but stand by for details on something I’m planning for August in Montauk).

So, ciao for now. As always, if you have any questions, comments or idle chatter, just launch a flare!

-Safety Dave (In my inflatable airbag, taking my bike to work on the 4th.  I never leave home without it!)

bike vest

Photo courtesy of Helen Kim

bike vest