John page williams
The following review was written by John Page Williams, Editor-at-large, Chesapeake Bay Magazine. John, senior naturalist for the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, has been a regular contributor to Chesapeake Bay Magazine for 30 years, specializing in environmental issues, nature, wildlife, fishing and boats. He has been testing new and used boats for the magazine's Time-Tested and New Boat News departments since 1998.

JANUARY 2012
 
   
Length overall  32' (34' w/transom platform)
Beam  11' 6"
Draft 22"        
Displ. 10,500 lb
Fuel 226 gal Water 40 gal 
Power Twin Volvo 260hp IPS drives 
Base Price $379,000

Roger Brooks, whose Brooks Boatworks makes the tooling, including the hull molds, for several well known boat companies, plays a key role in the boatbuilding community around Washington, N.C. He also does some semi-custom fabrication to order, including for the Chesapeake's own Eastport 32. It's no surprise, then, that he has developed his own design--with spectacular results. We recently had an opportunity for a sea trial aboard his new Brooks 32 IPS, an elegant, fast, efficient, compact 
offshore sportfisherman.

For starters, she's beautiful, with a graceful Carolina sheerline that begins with tumblehome at the transom and progresses to a flared bow. A fairing around the forward end of the bridge deck deflects wind from skipper and passengers, while a free-standing hardtop protects them from rain and sun. A full set of curtains is available. The helm is on the centerline, for all-around visibility, with a companion seat to port and an L-shaped lounge immediately aft. The companionway is to starboard.

The helm deck rises on twin mechanical lifts for full access to the twin Volvo D4 diesels, with access to the IPS pod drives in the cockpit. The cockpit is spacious, and Brooks offers a wide range of custom features for fishing and diving. Accommodations below include a forward V-berth, a galley with sink, optional burner and microwave to starboard, and an enclosed head to port. A compact generator is available for air conditioning and other electrical needs.

Construction in the Brooks 32 is all high-tech composite, so she is both light and strong. That combination and the twin Volvo IPS drives give her remarkable performance, including a cruising speed of 26 knots burning only 12.8 gallons per hour. Top speed is 38 knots. What is more remarkable is her maneuverability with the pod drives and Volvo's sophisticated control system. One example is the variable turning radius that allows her to spin in her own length at slow speeds but increase progressively at higher ones to prevent capsize.

One more point: At speed the spray curls sharply off the bottom strakes at her bow. That curl keeps the cockpit dry. It's one small index of Brooks Boatworks quality, the result of excellent tooling and painstaking work by an experienced lamination crew. Base price with twin Volvo 260-hp IPS Drives is $379,000. Brooks Boatworks, Washington, N.C., 252-974-1005; www.brooksboatworks.com.