The Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show highlights the best of the marine industry on one of the world’s largest stages, and Marlin magazine will be there to cover it all. Here’s a sneak peek of just a few hot new boats, accessories and gear that we’ll be checking out during this year’s FLIBS.
We’ve had this one on our radar for a while now: The debut of the new Bertram 35. She’s a modernized version of the iconic Bertram31, and while that original soul clearly shines through, the new boat is beamier, longer and more spacious. She’s projected to hit speeds in excess of 40 knots with twin 460 hp diesels. Hull no. 1 is laid out as a cruising version but subsequent boats will be rigged to fish.
Viking 72 Convertible
Another boat that’s new for FLIBS is the 72 Convertible from Viking Yachts. In the standard configuration, she’s laid out with four staterooms, each with a private head, a J-shaped sofa in the salon, a U-shaped galley with custom granite countertops, a large walk-in pantry forward, and a queen berth in the forward stateroom. An optional layout also offers crossover berths in the forward stateroom. An interesting side note: Viking designs and manufactures nearly 90 percent of what goes into every boat they build, from 42 to 92 feet.
Paul Spencer began his offshore career at just 12 years old, first as a deckhand and then as a captain in North Carolina’s prolific charter-fishing industry. In 1996, he turned to boatbuilding, where he has excelled at producing some of the finest boats to grace the fishing hot spots of the world. The new Spencer 69 Bid Time carries on that proud tradition, and while her pedigree his one of luxury and high performance, her style is uniquely Carolina.
The C7.1 engine from Caterpillar Marine is ideal for smaller vessels ranging from 25 to 60 feet in size. The engine, producing from 400 to 500 bhp, is a turbocharged and aftercooled inline six-cylinder design. It features a common rail fuel system for optimum combustion and low emissions. The C7.1 is also noticeably quiet in operation thanks to reduced combustion noise through advanced electronic control. And perhaps even better, there is no visible smoke from the engine during operation. It also meets EPA Tier 3 standards.
A leader in innovative marine propulsion technology, Twin Disc debuts three new products at the Fort Lauderdale show. One of these is the new E-STEER Electronic Steering System, which avoids the pitfalls of traditional hydraulic setups by connecting the electronic helm to hydraulic-powered rudders via wires, reducing leaks and loss of steerage. The E-STEER system features speed-sensing technology, so the helm is firmer when at full throttle and lighter when maneuvering slowly. The system also has built-in Dynamic Rudder Control, so that the range of rudder movement is proportional to the vessel’s speed. This prevents sudden, intentional or accidental changes while at speed.
The Garmin Fantom 24 is a solid-state radar that uses MotionScope technology and the Doppler effect to detect and highlight moving targets to help avoid collisions, all in a smaller, 24-inch footprint. It’s also useful in locating flocks of birds and tracking bad weather. Pulse Compression technology provides high resolution while maximizing energy in order to enhance detection and identification of targets. It can pick up targets from as close as 20 feet and to as distant as 48 nautical miles, even in fog or rain. There’s also instant-on tracking, so no warm-up is needed.
The GO9 XSE from Simrad is the latest addition to the popular GO Series systems. It has intuitive, multi-touch controls that smartphone and tablet users will find familiar and easy to use. The GO9 XSE is fully compatible with Simrad Broadband 3G/4G radars and features an internal 10 Hz GPS receiver, StructureScan HD and chirp sonar, autopilot integration, engine data monitoring, full audio entertainment connectivity with SonicHub2, built-in wireless connectivity and the powerful Simrad TripIntelTM trip computer. The GO9 XSE connects to NMEA 2000-compatible equipment aboard vessels with either outboard or inboard engines to show fuel flow, fluid level, speed, heading and water temperature. A wide range of cartography options is available, including C-MAP, Navionics and more.
The top name in marine gyrostabilization, Seakeeper is set to introduce a real game-changer this year at FLIBS. The Seakeeper 3 is their smallest gyro yet, and is specifically designed for boats in the 30- to 39-foot range, perfect for those deep-vee center consoles out there. Plus, it’s also designed for refits, with a leaning post installation option that houses the gyro inside. Seakeeper’s vacuum encapsulation enables the flywheel to spin about three times faster, which reduces flywheel weight by two-thirds and halves the power requirements. And because the critical components, the flywheel, bearings, and motor, are sealed for life in a vacuum, they are forever isolated from the marine environment. The Seakeeper gyro is effective at all speeds and can be used in all sea conditions.
Dometic Marine will have a wide variety of products on display, including their titanium condensers, which provide extreme durability and extend service life by eliminating erosion and corrosion vulnerabilities. Products on display with titanium condenser coils include the Eskimo Ice 1000X, which generates fishbox ice within minutes and produces up to 1,000 pounds of ice per day, and the KRA 433X and 450X cabinet condensing units, which are designed for use in direct expansion refrigeration and freezer systems, such as cockpit freezers/refrigerators or catch-box chillers. Also on display will be the Sea Xchange + Spot Zero XZ double-pass water purification system, which is the first and only single-machine watermaker that is fully automatic, with integrated double-pass reverse osmosis that can purify every source of yacht water, including seawater, brackish water, lake or river water, and dockside water.
The compact 12-spreader light from Aqualuma is just one of their many popular lighting solutions that will be on display during the show. With a powder-coated aluminum housing and scratch-resistant polymer lens, the SL 12 can be flush- or bracket-mounted and features a wide beam to illuminate large areas anywhere on board. A built-in thermo control monitors heat and will ramp down the lighting on those extremely hot days. It can accept either 12- or 24-volt power, has a two-year warranty and comes in either stainless steel or white bezel (shown above).
An efficient, bulletproof livewell pump is critical to success. That’s one reason why Hooker Electric set out to design and built what they consider the best livewell pump on the market. It’s compact but with high flow performance, with a body constructed from 5086 aluminum, titanium and PVC. It includes their brushless 12V DC motor and variable flow control, up to a staggering 2,500 gallons per hour.
While best known for their foul-weather gear, Grundens is rolling out their Sport Fishing line, which includes board shorts, performance long- and short-sleeve shirts, jackets, pants, neck gaiters and more. The gear is clearly designed with performance and comfort in mind, incorporating things like four-way stretch fabrics in the mix. High-tech fabrics mean water- and stain-resistance as well as quick drying too.