Bayliss Boatworks 75 Review

Artisanship, speed, beauty and storage score high marks in North Carolina

A Bayliss Boatworks sport-fishing boat on the water.
Sleek and sexy, Wave Paver roars through her sea trials off North Carolina’s Outer Banks. Courtesy Bayliss Boatworks / Eden Saunders

Special delivery: Sign up for the free Marlin email newsletter. Subscribe to Marlin magazine for $29 for 1 year and receive 2 bonus digital issues.

Boatbuilder John Bayliss and owner Jr. Davis have collaborated once again to create another world-class tournament-fishing battlewagon. When Davis planned to build another boat with the capability of fishing multiple destinations around the globe, his decision was quite easy. Having built a 77-footer more than five years ago, Davis knew exactly what was needed to accommodate—citing quietness, stability, ride and comfort to “extending my years of fishing.” And the Bayliss team is driven to produce that very thing, because Bayliss runs a competitive fishing program himself, adding a mindfulness that effectively translates into decades of experience for this new 75-footer called Wave Paver.

Watch: Hop aboard for a spin on Mama C, a 60-foot Bayliss.

Cockpit and Mezzanine

The 75’s cockpit is laid out for a variety of billfishing: The transom fish box can host tuna tubes that drop into an inner lip allowing the teak lids to stay closed; the lazarette ice box doubles as dredge or bait storage, with easy access through a large hatch just aft of the rocket launcher; and port and starboard hatches allow access for maintenance and provide even more storage.

The mezzanine boasts vast amounts of storage also, including a heated area for chamois and wash mitts to help eliminate that sour, wet odor. There is no shortage of cold storage either, with three freezers and a drink box. Against the salon bulkhead to port, an aft-facing lounge, and to starboard, there is a cabinet containing a copious amount of custom storage and a grill. The custom storage is ­CNC-cut-specific, so not only do you know which item might be missing, the items also stay firmly in place.

And to keep Wave Paver stable in an obnoxious ­beam sea, a Seakeeper 18 resides in a watertight hatch forward of the Release Marine fighting chair.

The helm and console of the Bayliss Boatworks 75.
The island helm is well laid out with easy access to all electronics and controls. Courtesy Bayliss Boatworks / Eden Saunders

Flybridge and Helm

The bridge is laid out in a center-console design with forward seating that contains a large freezer, and above the seat is another freezer that can double as more seating.

The console hosts two Garmin 22-inch multifunction displays, two 17-inch displays, VHF radios, and engine monitors. There are also two compartments to either side of the helm that contain the various switches, controls, systems-­monitoring displays and the stereo system. The safety gear is stored in the brow.

I noticed that the bridge wings were wider than usual, each with sliding pocket doors to store light-tackle spinning-gear outfits and gaffs. I cannot stress enough the fact that this 75-footer has zero dead space, and the crew has taken great care in placing every item so that when you are asked to retrieve something, they can tell you exactly where to find it—smart and efficient.

The interior salon of the Bayliss Boatworks 75.
A stained walnut interior, a first for the builder, offers a stunning contrast to the black leather soft goods. Courtesy Bayliss Boatworks / Eden Saunders


A stained walnut interior with black leather soft goods offers a stunning contrast to the white dinette. This is the first walnut interior for Bayliss Boatworks, and true to form, they nailed it, utilizing different shades and two varied wood species. Immediately on each side of the salon are storage areas for headsets and accessories and satellite phones, in addition to a USB charging station and a catch-all drawer. The cabinet below the starboard-side window conceals a retractable 55-inch television.

Under each section of the U-shaped sofa reveals more massive amounts of storage that are organized utilizing dividers. Breakaway panels behind the sofa backs allow access to components for easy service.
The Wave Paver program typically consists of a large crew, so the need for seating and open space is vital. A Release Marine custom Circassian and black walnut coffee table articulates to dining height with multiple leaves to double the table in size, while a smaller matching table is found forward at the dinette. And underfoot, a raised platform hosts a large storage drawer loaded with trolling plugs.

The galley is a chef’s dream with a Wolf cooktop and oven, Viking microwave, three Sub-Zero refrigeration units, and granite countertops. Each drawer and cabinet are meticulously crafted for silverware, cutlery, and storage containers to maximize space and minimize movement.

Forward to port is a spacious day head with access to storage in the brow of the house. Across from the head, there’s an incredible pantry and minibar. The pantry is designed to reduce traffic in the galley, and houses a countertop, ice maker, liquor storage, plumbed coffee maker, spice rack and cookware storage, and other chef accoutrements. This is quite an impressive and well-thought-out area to accommodate the needs of this large traveling crew.

As you walk down the companionway, the book-matched walnut veneers overhead provide a nice departure from the traditional soft liners, and even the bezels of the LED lights are matched in walnut. Completely custom and fashion-forward, no detail was left behind. To port, the tackle room stores tackle boxes, rods and reels, foul-weather gear, and a washer/dryer. Across the hall are two crew staterooms with a Jack-and-Jill-style head, and each bunk provides storage below.

Just prior to the master stateroom entry, a raised area reveals a hatch to access more storage, and tunnels lead to access the pump room bulkhead, allowing the crew to access the forward tunnel without disturbing the owner at rest. The master stateroom also sports a queen-size bed with storage below, a sofa, also with storage below, hanging lockers, night tables, and an en suite head with a cavernous shower.

A stark, clean engine room of the Bayliss Boatworks 75.
The engine room is home to a pair of MTU 16V2000 M96L engines, propelling the boat to a top speed of 44.6 knots. Courtesy Bayliss Boatworks / Eden Saunders

Engine Room, Pump Room and Performance

Through a crash door in the tackle room, you enter the air-conditioned pump room. Contained here are the water pumps, watermakers, chillers, a Seakeeper 9, and the proprietary Bayliss freshwater cooling system that supplies fresh water to all components that would normally require raw-water cooling, including both Seakeepers.

Another crash door leads to the engine room, where you stand between the 16-cylinder MTUs. Looking aft reveals a Northern Lights generator on each side. Bayliss is always thinking ahead of the maintenance and repair curve: Both of the generators have the drip pans removed and are mounted to a thick piece of aluminum on top of Starboard. By removing five of the six mounting bolts, the generators can pivot away from the aft bulkhead to provide easier access to the back sides—ingenious, to say the least. Both the pump room and engine room have custom tool drawers that are ­CNC-cut foam for each tool that resides there.

Read Next: Meet boatbuilder John Bayliss in our exclusive interview.

The 2,600 hp MTUs are impressively quiet, clean-burning, and allow Wave Paver to show off at various speeds. She is quite nimble at 1,800 rpm and provides a comfortable 32-knot cruise; at 2,100 rpm, she hits 38-plus knots; and a fully loaded top-end rockets her out at a speed of 44.6 knots.

John Bayliss and his crew, along with input from experienced owners, continue to push the envelope of innovation and craftsmanship to ultimately deliver an award-winning vessel to the discerning customer. Keep an eye out for Wave Paver—or her 77-foot sister—because wherever you see them, I am sure they will be paving waves to the top of the leaderboard.

More Boats