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Cape Horn 36XS: 2021 Boat Buyers Guide

The 36XS matches maximum fishability with a sleek design.

December 15, 2020
Cape Horn 36XS running offshore for fishing
The 36XS blends fishability with comfort. Courtesy Cape Horn Boats

The last thing a Cape Horn boat sees as it leaves the factory in Milton, Florida, is the steely eye of company president Chris Fabbro.

Fabbro, who with his father, Bob, built the first Cape Horn (the 16 Classic) in their garage more than 30 years ago, inspects every boat before turning it over to its new owner. The lineup now stretches from 22 to 36 feet, in bay and offshore models.

How’d it start? Father and son wanted a fishing boat that was both hardcore and comfortable, with big fishing platforms and massive livewells. Unable to find one that suited them, they built it.

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Hull voids in a Cape Horn are pressure-filled with closed-cell foam, quieting the ride, adding stiffness, and making it unsinkable—a consideration CC survey respondents always rank highly.

Cape Horn 36XS

The “XS” in the model name stands for extra seating, or extra storage—well, actually, both. It might as well stand for extra fishability and comfort too, in a hand-tailored big-flare boat boasting yacht-quality hardware and appointments.

The helm station has compartments for tackle and other gear; 60 percent of survey respondents prefer permanent storage space. The dash accommodates multiple large-screen displays. EPS steering allows easy upgrade to joystick control.

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Cape Horn 36XS laddered hatch
A laddered hatch in the hardtop gives access to antennas and a possible upper station. Courtesy Cape Horn Boats

Within a rear-facing seat is a 60-gallon livewell; a second 20-gallon livewell within the transom can also serve as storage; 69 percent of center-console respondents said one livewell was enough, 27 percent wanted two, and just 4 percent held out for three.

Standard are a forward lounge and a large, rear foldaway bench (76 percent of those surveyed wanted seating for four or more).

An optional VacuFlush head can be installed in the large walk-in console, which has a pullout steel sink. A flip-up seat at the console front transforms into a lounge seat with a flip-up footrest.

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The 36XS’s oversize hardtop contains a pair of electronics boxes and flush-mounted speakers, with several lighting options. Revolution outriggers are standard. A laddered skylight hatch in the top gives access to adjust antennas and adds the consideration of an upper station.

More big thinking? Triple outboards produce speeds of 60 mph. A 9-foot-long insulated fish box measures 1,400 quarts volume. And then there’s the rod holders—25 of them, various types and locations, standard.

Survey Says: On Target

  • Abundant rod holders in various locations and types
  • Standard hardtop and outriggers
  • Dash accommodates three large displays

Owners Say

  • 360-degree fish-fighting ability
  • Feels like a Cadillac in even the roughest seas
  • Built like a tank

Brand Says

  • A sleek and modern design
  • Go farther, faster with incredible efficiency

Reader Response

  • “A great seaworthy boat”

Specs

LOA: 36′11″

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Beam: 10′6″

Fuel Capacity: 385 gal.

Dry Weight: 7,900 lb. plus power

Max HP: 1,400

More Info

capehornboats.com

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