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.
Proline 23
JANUARY 2009
 
   
Length overall  23'
Beam  8' 6"
Draft  17"
Deadrise20 degrees
Fuel 125 gals
Max. power  300 hp
Base Price  $68,900

Pro-Line's new 23 Dual-Console (DC) takes the company back to 1968, when the builder's first model was a 24-foot DC built for guides and commercial fishermen. The 23 DC is a thoroughly modern version, designed for today's large four-stroke outboards.

Pro-Line starts with its proven 20-degree semi-V hull and adds a molded deck/liner unit with port and starboard consoles, a walkthrough windshield, forward seating to port and starboard and a self-bailing cockpit. The boat is built using the company's proprietary construction system, which starts with pre-cut knitted fiberglass fabric kits and progresses through painstaking hand layup and bonding of the hull and deck. The result is a tough, quiet boat.

The 23 DC features upholstered forward seats and a head compartment in the port console with four feet of headroom to access the portable toilet. There's storage for skis and vests in a long compartment on the centerline. Cockpit seating includes a back-to-back seat to port that converts to a sunpad and a fold-down transom seat for two. The helm offers a pedestal seat with flip-up bolster and a dash with enough space to flush-mount a 12-inch display.

The transom's port quarter holds an 18-gallon round livewell. Racks for six rods are mounted under the cockpit gunwales, with upholstered bolsters above them. To starboard is a transom door for access to the stern deck.

Our test boat was powered by a Mercury 225 Verado, giving us a top speed of 40 mph (6200 rpm), but the sweet spot was 24 mph (4200 rpm), burning fuel at 9 gallons per hour. The boat planed cleanly at 12 to 14 mph (3200–3400 rpm). Volvo QL trim tabs provided excellent trim control, and the big Verado purred quietly, even at full throttle. Pro-Line has packed plenty of function into its 23 DC. Pro-Line Boats, Crystal River, Fla.; 800-866-2771; www.prolineboats.com