On the Drawing Board: Vilano Boatworks 65

A new custom builder emerges on the East Coast

The builder expects a cruising speed of more than 40 knots with the new 65-footer.Courtesy Vilano Boatworks

Vilano Boatworks is a custom sport-fish builder based in St. Augustine, Florida, and brings to the table new and original designs by in-house naval architect Erwin Gerards. Builds will feature Caterpillar engines in all models.

The first boat, a 65-foot convertible, is being commissioned by an incredibly knowledgeable family whose fleet includes a custom 48-foot Merritt express as well as a Huckins Yacht, among the many other vessels they have owned previously. Vilano hull Nos. 1 and 2 will feature the all-new 2,400 hp Caterpillar C32B engines, and will be outfitted with gyrostabilizers, omnidirectional sonar and a full tower.

Fully loaded, the 65 will displace approximately 90,000 pounds, and draft 5 feet, 5 inches with ­shallow prop pockets. Fuel capacity is 2,100 gallons. The builder anticipates a ­cruising speed of more than 40 knots and a top end approaching 50 knots. The Vilano Boatworks 65 is expected to hit the water in May 2022.

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