Vessel style descriptors

Discussion in 'Powerboats' started by Scott Carter, Jan 17, 2010.

  1. Scott Carter
    Joined: Oct 2006
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    Location: Annapolis

    Scott Carter Senior Member

    As a predominantly sailboat person, I often am uncertain as to what certain terms used to describe or name some power vessels actually refer to. Here's a list of some common ones which I just quickly came up with, and I'm missing some. Are there any criteria that are hard and fast? I keep thinking of this in sailboat terms where the criteria to be a ketch, for example, are pretty well agreed upon (though even here there is room for interpretation in gray areas).

    Sport Sedan
    Power cruiser
    Aft Cabin
    Cabin Cruiser
    Sports Cruiser
    Sports Fisher

    On this short list some of them seem pretty basic and I think there's some overlap, but I see them used seemingly pretty loosely and often without any apparent method. None, at least, that I can discern. Help bring me up to speed (...intended).
    This topic was brought up before here but it didn't seem to develop.

  2. marshmat
    Joined: Apr 2005
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    Location: Ontario

    marshmat Senior Member

    There are a few terms here that have relatively clear definitions (aft cabin = has a cabin in the stern), but by and large it's mostly marketing hype and varies greatly depending on the target audience for that particular advertising campaign. Examples:

    "Sport" in front of anything = looks a bit sleeker than the normal version, may or may not be 1-2 knots faster

    "Express" = similar to "Sport", often has a lower superstructure for its size

    "Trawler" (accurate) = a heavy, seakindly hull based on fishing trawlers
    "Trawler" (common) = topsides look sort-of traditional like, y'know

    "Sportfisherman" = has a large aft cockpit for fishing, might have a tower

    "Convertible" = a sportfisherman with sufficient consideration for non-fishing activities to maintain a roughly 50/50 (instead of the usual 95/5) gender balance

    "Flybridge" = has a helm station up high so you can see behind you and roast in the sun while driving

    "Downeast" = looks sorta-kinda like a lobster boat from Nova Scotia or New England

    "Cabin Cruiser" = is the size of a big bowrider or other open boat, but bulked up tall so that it can fit a teeny-weeny cabin

    "Motoryacht" = Our marketing department has decked it out with lots of wood and leather, so it will impress your friends from the country club
  3. apex1

    apex1 Guest

    You summed it up Matt.

    Let me add, that there is a hughe difference in usage of the terms worldwide.

    A Trawler for example means a completely different animal for a European and for a US citizen. And they are extremely different.
    Having a Trawler means having a converted fishing vessel, for us.
    Though the marketing drivel of "Grand Banks" and others leaves traces.

    A Motoryacht is every Cabin Cruiser (another term) from about 12m up, for a European. Not so for the North American.

    "Euro Style" means a typical US boat design and is found nowhere in Europe!

    The list could be endless.

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