Boating NZ : FREE TO READ March 2014
engines and other machinery aft under the cockpit sole, accessed via four hatches, the space under the saloon floor can accommodate a generous mid-cabin. The owners say it’s much quieter with the engines aft rather than underfoot in the saloon, no matter how good the sound insulation. With the boat underway, and doors and window closed, it is really hushed inside the saloon, making conversation a pleasure. Put a deep-vee hull with IPS drives into a sharp turn and it will heel over rather more than the same hull with conventional shaft drives. In some cases Volvo limits the radius through which the forward facing propellers can rotate to moderate heeling, but Volpower was happy with the way Luminaire behaved during testing, effected by throwing the boat into full throttle turns at more than 30 knots. She’s an entertaining boat to drive – almost like a big trailer boat in the way the hull reacts to the wheel – but throwing boats into high speed turns is not everyday boating behaviour. In ordinary driving, Luminaire just feels smooth, quiet and powerful. Weighing in at 23 tonnes, she can reach 35 knots, while 20-25 knots is effortless and supremely comfortable. The hull slides up onto the plane imperceptibly, and a touch of the Lenco trim tabs brings the nose level for an even quieter ride. The owners have opted for Volvo’s car-like cruise control system which will hold the boat at a pre-selected speed in virtually any sea conditions. Volvo IPS will also hold the boat on station using GPS co-ordinates, which they hope to utilise for pinpoint groper fishing. The Ultraleather-wrapped helm console houses a pair of Furuno Navnet 14-inch displays, the usual array of Volvo digital instruments, various switches, tank gauges, Autoanchor controls for the Muir capstan and Manson Supreme anchor, plus a chain counter, the VHF radio and Jabsco remote spotlight control, but it manages to look uncluttered. According to the skipper, the radar works out to 120 miles. The Navigator helm seats are comfortable and almost infinitely adjustable and the wooden wheel adjusts up and down. The skipper quickly got the hang of Volvo’s joystick controls and he easily brought Luminaire’s bulk alongside our photo boat and against the jetty despite a breeze. He attributes his quick uptake on the joysticks to driving bulldozers while clearing tracks on the farm. Except when close quarters manoeuvring or berthing, the skipper uses the conventional digital throttle controls, taking advantage of Volvo’s low speed mode in marina fairways and when dredging for scallops. A push of the button reduces speed at idle from over 6 knots to about 2.5 knots. BRING ON THE WEEKEND Icon Custom Boats has produced a superb New Zealand-designed and built boat; its careful project management and scrupulous attention to detail kept the build on target, on time and price. We left the owners to get on with their cruise towards the end of a stunning Marlborough Sounds day with guests they had picked up in Picton for a weekend away. ➤ loa 18.5m ➤ beam 4.85m ➤ draft approx 1.2m ➤ weight 23000kg ➤ construction aluminium-GRP ➤ engines 2 x Volvo-Penta IPS 900 (700hp) turbo-diesels ➤ propeller IPS forward facing pod-drives ➤ deadrise 23° at transom ➤ fuel 2400 litres in four tanks ➤ water 400 litres, plus watermaker ➤ cruising speed 18-25 knots ➤ max speed 35 knots ➤ price as tested POA ➤ manufactured by Icon Custom Boats www.iconcustomboats.co.nz firstname.lastname@example.org +64 03 313 3560 Icon 18.5m “Weighing in at 23 tonnes, she can reach 35 knots, while 20-25 knots is effortless and supremely comfortable.” A twin-berth bunk room on the starboard side shares a bathroom with the four-berth bunk room in the bows. Both cabins are large and well lit with plenty of stowage. 46 Boating New Zealand March 2014 Tested_Icon_March14.indd 46 19/02/2014 7:56:53 a.m.
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