Weaver 80 - Boat Review

Vessels like this represent works of art as much as fishing machines, and now is a good time for a patron to step forward and appreciate the beauty of the Weaver 80.

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Jim Weaver conspired with Don Blount to create his elegant new 80-footer, and Miss Pat smacks of old-world yachting and craftsmanship, with prominent varnished mahogany and teak throughout. But don't judge this book by its cover. No matter how stringently it may hearken back to J.P. Morgan and Cornelius Vanderbilt, the systems that make Miss Pat a formidable fishing adversary are decidedly 21st century.

The engine room, with plenty of headroom and amazing space outboard of the engines, holds a pair of MTU 2,400 hp 16V2000 M93 common-rail diesels. If a power plant that can move an 80-foot, 60-ton fishing boat in excess of 40 knots isn't representative of "advanced technology," I don't know what is.

Upon leaving Lake Worth Inlet, southeast winds kicked up to around 15 to 20 knots, generating four- to five-foot seas. We had to take the brunt of the waves on our starboard bow, and even though the resulting spray caught the wind and blew over the flybridge, the seas had virtually no impact on the boat's ride. Even running at 32 knots in the slop, the Weaver 80 covered ground as if floating on silk. Cruising at 30 knots, the Weaver responded instantly to minor turns of the wheel, but a hard-over course change still scribed a large arc.

The Weaver 80 boasts quite a different layout than what you normally see in traditional sport-fishing convertibles. A split-level salon creates a step up from the living room to the galley and dinette level. I especially like the lack of hard angles and sharp corners aboard. Weaver did a particularly fabulous job with radius curves on the fascia covering of the refrigerator drawers in the galley.

I also found a truly impressive amount of storage aboard this boat - no surprise, I suppose, for an 80-footer. However, hidden latches and hatches provide an exceptionally clean look. For example, just inboard of the galley is what appears to be a blank bulkhead. But if you know where to put your fingers - presto! A mammoth pantry reveals a wine cellar, entertainment amps and tons of storage. And speaking of latches, the cockpit/salon door boasts Weaver's own patented electric slide motor.

The full-width, midship master stateroom enjoys considerable separation from all the other guest quarters. But Weaver included unique innovations in two of those other staterooms. Hidden, Pullman-style bunks in the bulkheads flip out to double the sleeping arrangements in these twin-berth guest cabins.

The cockpit sports the obligatory mezzanine seating with all sorts of storage, freezers, a two-story ice dump for the Eskimo icemaker and so on. It's well laid out and clean; the only really unusual thing you'll find here are the large fish boxes with remarkably small hatches.

Weaver builds cold-molded boats that include layers of Kevlar in addition to the fiberglass mat. He then coats all painted surfaces (inside and out) with U.S. Paint's Awlcraft 2000 acrylic urethane paint.

The boat also sports an elaborate security system with engine-room, low-light, infrared and cockpit fishing cameras all tied to a digital recorder with one week's worth of memory.

The massive flybridge leaves so much room aft of the helm seats that you might think your view of the cockpit past the overhang would be impeded. Not the case; from the helm you can see all of the fighting chair and the forward quarter of the bow. And the 360-degree surround seating forward of the helm lets your guests party upstairs in the breeze.

Vessels like this represent works of art as much as fishing machines, and now is a good time for a patron to step forward and appreciate the beauty of the Weaver 80. - Dean Travis Clarke

Specifications

LOA......80'5"
**BEAM......
21'3"
DRAFT......6'
WEIGHT......120,000 pounds
POWER......T 2,400 hp MTU  16V2000 M93 diesels
DEADRISE......11 degrees**
FUEL......3,000 gallons
**WATER......
400 gallons**
PRICE......On request

_Weaver Boat Works / Tracy's Landing, Maryland / 410-867-8757 / _www.weaverboatworks.com