May 22, 2009

Boat Review: Hinckley T55 Talaria

Traditional lobster yachts have received a tremendous boost of attention and success in recent years, with Italian, French, Turkish and British builders jumping to offer their version to the original United States Maine New England status symbol boat. Founded in 1928 Hinckley has been at the forefront of this design being the original builder of the lobster boat back in the nineteen thirties. PowerYachtBlog May 2009 Boat Review takes a more insider view at the Hinckley Power Yacht flagship, with the beautiful and timeless T55 Talaria launched in 2005.
Hinckley T55 Talaria accommodation is all about offering spacious spaces and satisfying as much as possible its customer needs with four different lower deck plans all concentrated on the second cabin area. The T55 welcomes you inside trough its sliding patio door to the saloon with a c-shaped settee to starboard, two relaxing sofas to port side, and dual seated helm station to starboard.
The lower deck below is dedicated to the cabins, heads, and galley located mid ship to starboard. The owner cabin with its en-suite shower head is a spacious full beam affair, but not mid ship located with its queen size berth also surprising for looking aft versus the normal way of looking to fore. Standard guest cabin area located to starboard can have four different choices: twin single berths, office, c-shaped settee, and a double berth. The guests or day head is located to port side adjacent to the galley and in front of the three stairs which bring you from the main to the lower deck. Performance
With Hamilton jet drives propelling the T55 Talaria, Hinckley's flagship offers a super handling and steer ability unmatchable in its size not only to similar traditional yachts but also to more aggressive looking sport yachts. Performance is also the best of its category with the bigger Cats C18 engines choice giving a maximum speed of 38 knots and a 30 knot cruise. The other smaller standard twin Cats 800hp will give a 33 knots max and 26 knots cruising. For tight marina manoeuvring the T55 also has the Jetstick which make the difficult stuff all look so easy. Another winner for the T55 is also its draft of only 0.89 metres which will take you where similar sized boats can never go. If you think jets are not for you the T55 is also offered with optional propeller drives, which should give less speeds and a deeper draft.
Positive super jet drive handling performance
easy joystick use
various interior layouts
cockpit side deck connection no three cabin option
Competition in the Traditional Yacht series have increased a lot in recent years with many builders especially Italian ones jumping on the Lobster Boat design wagon and offering a different view how this should be made in the new millennium. Whats interesting that most of these designs look different to the other. If you like a lot the traditional Hinckley I would say have a look to the slightly bigger Grand Banks Eastbay SX, Sabre Saloon Express, and the Turkish cold molded built Vicem Classic Series. If more modern looks are your thing have a look at the Italian builds Franchini, Mochi, Solare with Abati and Estensi giving a good compromise between old and new. Still with all said the T55 Talaria is unbeatable for handling and performance thanks to the Jet propulsion and 38 knots of max speeds. Competition criteria is based for 16 to 17 metres of LOA and two or three cabin interior.
Abati Yachts 55 Portland - traditional, 3 cabins 3 heads all separate entrance Grand Banks 55 Eastbay SX - two or three cabin option, 17 m + 34 knots max
Estensi 540 Goldstar S - 3 guests 2 crew cabins classic topsides with modern stern
Franchini 55 Emozione - modern! 2 or 3 cabins, 17 m 34 knots max
Mochi 54 Dolphin Sun Top Version - 7 guests berths in 3 cabins + 1 crew modern!
Sabre 52 Saloon Express - double stateroom plan, another US contender
Solare 52 Lobster - 34 knots max with twin 670hp, 3 cabins + 1 crew
Vicem V54 Classic Series - Turkish cold mold built available in 2 or 3 cabins WILD CARD: Nordic Tugs 49 - Explorer yacht 16 metres 16 knots
Hinckley T55 Talaria is the flagship and symbol of its traditional yacht range, and manages to look timeless classic testifying this legendary boat builder glorious past. Hinckley also does not sleep on its successful past and moves ahead setting the future in motion with three exclusive items you want find on other boats traditional or not. First is the super solid Scrimp e-glass construction method giving a life time guarantee for solidity, second is the Hamilton jet drives which give a super handling on the dime, and last the joystick command which unites the thrusters to the drives making marina manoeuvring easy. While the joystick is common used today with the pods, when the T55 was introduced in 2005 it was a unique affair of the renowned US builder, presenting its exclusive patented Jetstick in 1998.
Technical Data
LOA. 16.84 metres (55.3 ft)
Length Waterline. 15.54 metres
Beam. 5.41 metres
Draft. 0.89 metres
Displacement. 24.947 kg
Fuel Capacity. 4542 litres
Water Capacity. 757 litres
Max Persons. 12
Accommodation. 4 + 2 berths, 6 + 2 berth
Engines. 2 x Cats 800hp, C18 1000hp
Propulsion. Hamilton HJ403 Water Jets, optional propeller drives
Speed. max 38 knots, cruise 30 knots with Caterpillar C18
Range. 400 nautical miles
Hull Shape. vee hull with sixteen degrees dead rise aft
Project. Bruce King, Hinckley
Construction. Dual Guard Scrimp E-Glass Composite with Vinylester resins
Certification. CE A
Picture Copyright Hinckley. Data Hinckley.

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