Building on an exceptional history of crafting the most seaworthy semi-displacement hulls known to man, the Isle of Wight’s Seaward Boats were approached to design and deliver this semi-custom Seaward 42. Valuing the integrity and sea-keeping of this exceptionally capable hull to carry them away from land, with long-distance passage-making at a reliable cruise of 18 knots being forefront of their needs.
Following delivery in 2016, BOUNDER set off in 2017 for the North of Scotland, to Bergen in Norway and the Baltic – into an environment in which she truly thrives. She is equipped with long-range tanks (an extra pair of 410 litre wing tanks brings her total capacity up to a little under 3000 litres), for a potential range over 500nm. She sports a Quick gyro stabilizer whilst a Humphree’s Active Ride control balances her Interceptor trim system; bringing modern technology alongside one of the greatest hulls ever conceived. This hull has been used variously by pilots, harbour-masters, navies, and enforcement agencies internationally since it is phenomenally capable, almost regardless of sea conditions.
BOUNDER however is no commercial workboat, and was specified precisely to deliver her crew in complete safety and exceptional comfort. In a vessel unflustered by weather, and built to maintain speed where other craft simply cannot. She was selected to run on a pair of Cummins QSB 6.7 litre diesels, lending her 850HP, and these punchy six-pot common-rail motors will drive her upwind at 25 knots. Whilst also ensuring quiet performance and sensible fuel burn (18 knots equating to a combined burn of 100 litres).
In terms of build finish, access, durability and just quality – there is very little that can live with the Seaward. This yacht is trimmed in selected high-grade teak, hand-built and massively constructed to cope with life at sea in less than ideal conditions. Everywhere is deep-fiddled, with a light satin varnish reflecting the light and ensuring that even her stout column handholds at the companionway are smoothly tactile, whilst serving their purpose. There is very little wasted space, so every void is filled with a drawer or locker, to maximise ability to stay out at sea, and carry a heavier loading in terms of stores and vittles than lesser boats.
Her decks are low, broad and beautifully clear – something she does inherit from her pilot-boat forebears – so she is a delight to move around, with over-size stainless grabs and a beautifully-conceived customs rail running all the way forward from her aft cockpit side exits to her flush foredeck. A substantial frame supports her aft canvas cover, creating a covered outside space aft of the wheelhouse, with comfortable seating and table at deck level, with plenty of deep lockers and lazaretto and machinery access. There is direct gate egress aft onto the solid bathing platform – but yet again Seaward use the extra length smartly – improving the ride, creating a safe, stable area to board the tender from, and even fit in a neat, sliding liferaft storage slot – to tuck the canister neatly away, and launch without fuss if ever required.
Internally – as you would expect, an exquisitely fitted-out saloon leads forward to a commanding helm, with a brace of fully-adjustable, sprung helm seats cosseting the navigator to starboard, and the helm to port. Triple forward screens (double-glazed for safety and best de-misting) are served by heavy-duty Speich pantographing wipers (independently wipe and speed controllable by a pad at the helm chair’s plinth). This is a boat that longs to be driven a decent distance.
The wheel and accompanying foot braces are height-adjustable for that perfect position. The pair of displays are angled correctly to negate glare, and all required systems fall to hand readily and correctly. Rather than a pair of poorly-fitting side windows, Seaward install a ratcheted locking mechanism to clamp the sliding screen shut, and then run a protective cowling hood around the outer frame – just for good measure. So the bridge is just what you’d hope for – but what of the accommodation?
Seaward’s tend to be run by owners who would value efficacy over extravagance, but the Seaward 42 has a fantastic galley arrangement, with plenty of light, loads of worktop space, excellent storage volume, an enormous double freezer, AND fridge. Along with the smart options such as a Quooker instant-hot tap, microwave and loudspeakers.
The lower dinette faces the galley – it is private, charmingly snug, exactly what you need after a decent offshore passage, and forms a large occasional double berth if numbers demand.
Then forward we go and into the main bow cabin, which is separate from the rest of the ship. Here there are two well-sprung mattress berths in a v-layout, both with lockers outboard, shelves above, and lockers below. A proper hanging locker is fitted aft, over a range of drawers, with en-suite access to the forward heads/shower, but perhaps the most Seaward item on the boat is fitted in the forward starboard locker. They have fitted a switched light to illuminate the fall of your stainless steel chain in the chain locker. Set in the aluminium frame of a watertight hatch, it’s both a great conceit, and an engagingly individual nod to the traditional artisan build of these yachts.
“There are the pretenders, the boats with blue hulls and chunky trawler-like styling that only appear to be serious seagoing boats. And then there are boats like the Seaward 42, which truly can venture forth any time in any weather.
The 42 is the real McCoy.”
Dave Marsh; Motor Boat & Yachting, September 2016.
The previous owner of “Bounder” was an experienced yachtsman that commissioned her from new and was thoroughly involved in the build. Specification included significantly upgraded systems and specifically soundproofing. “Bounder” was his second Seaward and he kept her in absolutely immaculate condition, maintained by a professional skipper. We were thoroughly smitten by her sea-kindly motion, comfort and build quality as we upgraded from planning-hulled motorboats. However busy diaries have kept us from making time to be afloat during our ownership and “Bounder” is now offered in pristine condition.