John martino, annapolis school of seamanship and annapolis yacht         management
The following review was written by John Martino and prepared by the marketing department of Chesapeake Bay Magazine. Mr. Martino is the founder and president of Annapolis Yacht Management and Annapolis School of Seamanship. He develops and teaches hands-on training courses for recreational boaters and professional mariners, and offers yacht delivery and onboard training services for powerboaters as well as sailors.
Rockharbour 42
AUGUST 2007
 
   
Length overall  42'
Beam  13'8"
Draft  3'
Displacement  26,400 lb
Fuel Capacity  264 gals
Water Capacity  106 gals
Base Price  $699,000


It's always exciting to test the first boat of a brand new design, especially when that boat is from a new builder. Such is the case with the new Rockharbour 42. When she first caught my eye, the Rockharbour was being set down in the yard by the travel lift outside my office. The flag blue hull, the flare forward, the tumblehome aft, the little bit of sweep to her sheer, and that forward beam makes her quite curvy. An elongated pilot house sits amidships with a cockpit behind. Design-wise she struck me as a mix of Downeast lobster boat and Carolina sportfisher. Intrigued by this attractive new boat, I walked across the yard to get a closer look. Soon I was aboard her with Hakan Bolel, the importer and project coordinator.  

Built in Turkey, the Rockharbours are constructed with a 25-mm foam coring encapsulated by several layers of vacuum-bagged vinylester resin-infused fiberglass—a process which makes for a strong, light hull. To drive the point home, Bolel produced a hull sample and began beating on it with a hammer—he didn't make a dent. The hull was designed for the new Volvo IPS propulsion system, which uses steerable drive units and counter-rotating puller props. Hull No. 1, however, was built with straight shafts coupled to Yanmar Engines.

In this boat the galley runs the full length port side of the pilothouse. The helm seat is to starboard along with a small L-shaped settee and table. Future layouts, says Bolel, will have a companion seat to port, a smaller galley aft and starboard, and a straight settee to port. Yet another layout option puts the galley down on the starboard side instead of a second cabin and adds more seating in the pilothouse. Any of these new layouts would be an improvement—I found the pilothouse a little crowded by the huge galley. The overnight accommodations are forward and down a few steps from the pilothouse. The master cabin has a centerline queen bunk. To port is the head with a separate stall shower. To starboard, the guest cabin has a single bunk. Boats equipped with the  IPS system will have much larger guest cabins.

Sliding glass doors separate the pilothouse from the cockpit, which has a transom door on center and seating along both sides. There is an electric grill forward to port and a sink and storage to starboard.

Underway, the Rockharbour was fast and remarkably quiet. At cruising rpm (3000) we made 25 knots and burned just over 30 gallons per hour. Wide open (3400) we made 30 knots and burned just over 40 gallons per hour. In turns she exhibited some propeller cavitations which should be eliminated by the IPS system in future models. Volvo estimates that the IPS system will also increase the top speed by six knots while decreasing fuel consumption by 30 percent. All in all I found the Rockharbour to be an impressive new design with great potential as both a weekender or coastal cruiser.