BOAT TEST: EDENCRAFT 233 FORMULA / NAUTEK MARINE SERVICES


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If you've got the money, this boat’s amazing electronic’s package is truly to die for

BOAT TEST: EDENCRAFT 233 FORMULA / NAUTEK MARINE SERVICES
EDENCRAFT 233 FORMULA / NAUTEK MARINE SERVICES

 

ONLY THE BEST

A new era of boating dawned in Australia a number of years ago. It coincided with the wholesale change in attitude that blossomed with the influx of luxurious American and European sportscruisers.

The entire boating market now demands premium quality in every facet, from performance to moulding and trim. The 21st Century plume of high-tech electronics is mind boggling and even trailerable battlewagons now contain clusters of outstanding instrumentation. No longer do we hear: "It's just a fishin' boat!"

There's been a steep rise in the customers wanting to customise their boats and the ensuing growth in shipwrights supplying premium services to meet the demand.

Melbourne's Nautek Marine is one such company and their close proximity to Melbourne's Dockland community has attracted clientele who demand only the best, and where tradition meets the 21st Century in the ever-popular Edencraft 233 Formula.

As the boat's advertising states, "The legend lives on." The hull's reputation for seaworthiness is unquestionable, even half a decade after its original design. The inherent construction quality lends it to be one tough package, as recognised by commercial and recreational boaters alike.

Edencraft Formula purchasers generally go for simplicity in the fitout, because of the nature of use. There in lies the difference with this boat. Nautek were confronted with a buyer who demanded a quality, offshore-capable hull that could run across Bass Strait if the urge took him. He also needed the boat to be trailerable, at the same time presenting a luxury fitout that would rival international standards.

Adam Davey at Nautek in Port Melbourne got the boat with a pair of 250hp Yamaha four-strokes. It had a windscreen (that was later tinted) and some necessities such as fuel tank and steering, but was really quite basic. Nautek specialise in electronics and marine project management and have the ability to make their clients' dreams a reality. They employ in-house shipwrights, such as Scott Hearle, and expert technicians and contractors to ensure quality.

 

 

 

FURUNO PACKAGE

Furuno were chosen as the mainstay of the vast electronics package. It was evident from the start that to get the amount of large-screen instruments into the smallish dash area, some major changes were needed. So, both the helm and passenger dashboards have been extensively remoulded.

The Furuno NAVNET VX2 black box system with a 12.1in multifunction colour screen and a separate remote keyboard takes centre stage. This is coupled to a full route and track Navpilot 511 autopilot, Furuno 2kW, 24nm radar, and a FLIR thermal imaging night-vision camera that is also interfaced with an underwater camera.

Adam explains that in an offshore fishing scenario you have the ability to overlay the radar image onto the chart. This is terrific for finding surface bait-schools and their ever-present companions. The 1kW transducer is mounted in a through-hull wet box, which has been known to supply bottom read outs at 100kmh (54kts)!

Safety is all-important in an offshore boat and this one is capable of utilising up-to-date weather services with accessibility to Weather Fax direct from the Bureau of Meteorology, as well as the NMEA 2000 weather station that also indicates humidity, wind speed, temperature, atmospheric pressure etc.

Of course, you can't have your boat "customised" without having the world's best rock box. How about a Rockford Fosgate system, with two amps, 12in sub-woofer in the cabin, two rear speakers, two more in the cockpit and four tower-speakers overhead. No need for fishing lines, this little baby knocks the fish right out of the water.

Problem was; they just kept running out of room. So, the passenger side-dash was ingeniously remoulded to allow fitting of the sound-system's dash remote, DC-battery monitoring and distribution system, indicator for the 100lt freshwater tank, Eversafe carbon dioxide fume sniffer system, the weather station and most importantly, a vertically mounted fridge.

The passenger-side features a footrest where safety equipment such as flares are stored securely. A throwable lifering is tucked in behind. The helm and passenger seats are well padded and upholstered and supported by shock-absorbing gas pedestals that function well. Personally, I would have replaced these with combination seat boxes, but again that's strictly my preference.

 



AT THE HELM

The helm is a myriad of superbly laid-out electronics. Once you get through the initial mind-boggling, it's surprisingly easy to master. Firstly,

the SeaStar Hydraulic steering is matched with an attractive steering wheel. The twin-binnacle controls are dash mounted and combine well with highly visible Yamaha digital multifunction engine gauges for well-informed, comfortable operation.

Also at the helm is an Icom VHF radio with Furuno GPS-distress calling that will transmit your actual position if activated in an emergency. There's a failsafe Ritchie compass, a slim-line switch panel, the Furuno NavNet remote keyboard, Muir windlass control with chain counter, FLIR night-vision controls, as well as Yamaha key starts and QL trim-tab controls.

Powering the electronics is no mean task. There are individual 90amp/h AGM batteries for each engine, and two 100amp/h batteries for the accessories. This is all managed by a VSR distribution system that ensures that no matter how long you run the accessories, while you and the crew are out having that wicked rampage on the bay, you will never discharge the engine batteries. A shorepower system with battery chargers is fitted for longer-term mooring. All circuits have circuit breakers eliminating single-use glass fuses. Even the sound system can be used without the power-hungry amplifiers for sensible power savings.

On the bow, the sprit houses a stainless steel SARCA anchor and chain. Low-line, split bowrails are both attractive and practical and there are retractable mooring cleats in all the right places.

The trimmers really went to town on this package utilising premium-quality suede and marine-grade vinyl as well as a high standard of workmanship. The cabin cushions are actually interchangeable as bow cushions, making a sun lounge for that perfect summer's day. Nice touch.

Nautek created the entire rear lounge. It is a masterful effort, not only in its outward appearance and in comfort, but for the myriad of storage it hides under the voluptuous cushions.

There's a detachable cockpit sun-awning and foldable bimini for shade. The rear lounge also has a plug-in table for the food and refreshments, and this drops down to form a double berth at the stern for accommodation, or to just enjoy as a lazy lounge lizard in the sun.

An attractive, powder-coated aluminium targa reflects the sporty style and grace that sets this craft apart. Once upon a time, we would only expect to see a targa of this style on a dedicated wakeboard package; however, it looks sensational on the Formula. Not only does it look terrific and modern, but it's practical. It supports the night-vision camera and the radar unit, as well as aerials and (of course) the quadruple Rockford Fosgate tower speakers. I really liked the idea of incorporating net pockets under the bimini for sensible and instantly accessible storage of the lifejackets.

 



FUN TIMES

This boat is all about fun in, on and under the water. If you need to wash the salt off after a dip there is a freshwater shower with 100lt capacity. Taking the plunge is easy with an ingenious, removable side-door and integral pullout ladder.

Other creature comforts are accommodated with a VacuFlush toilet and stainless steel sink unit in the cabin, as well as a very welcome refrigerator in the passenger dashboard module. Cabin privacy and security is assured with a custom electric door.

When daylight fades, the boat takes on a spaceship-like appearance with colourful instruments, gauges and spotlights. These are highlighted with red and white Hella LED cabin, cockpit and flood lights. Iridescent blue LED underfloor lights and Aqualuma underwater illumination lures passengers into party spirit. It really turns heads at night.

The flooring and trim is genuine teak reflecting the nature of the presentation. I love the look, feel and practicality of teak as it projects a natural and stylish fitout that is reminiscent of a Mediterranean sports package. However, there is much more to this boat than meets the eye.

The entire craft exudes premium quality from bow to stern. The Edencraft's strength and seakeeping abilities are legendary and the riding comfort of the big Formula Deep V is exceptional.

This is basically the same hull that was first produced some 50 years ago, and it's arguable that it may never be surpassed.

The fitout by the boys at Nautek Marine Services utilises the latest in componentry and technique, blasting this hell raiser into the 21st Millennium with a timeless style that will never go out of fashion.

 



WHAT WE LIKED

Built to last

Soft, dry ride

 



NOT SO MUCH

More thought should be put into utilising dash space for aftermarket flexibility in relation to marine electronics

 



HOW MUCH?

Priced from: $100,000 (BMT)

 



GENERAL

Type: Deep Vee Monohull

Material: GRP and carbon fibre composite hull

Length overall: Approx 7.1m

Beam: 2.45m

Deadrise: 24°

Weight: Approx 1600 kg (hull)

Towing weight: Approx 4000kg

 



CAPACITIES

Fuel: 400lt

People (day): Eight

Rec. min. HP: Twin 140hp

Rec. max. HP: 500hp

 



ENGINE

Make/model: 2 x Yamaha F250B

Type: Four-stroke V6 outboard

Rated HP: 250hp

Gearbox ratio: 2.00:1

 



SUPPLIED BY

Nautek Marine Services,

Factory 1, 202 Lorimer Street,

Port Melbourne, Vic, 3207

Ph: (03) 9645 4420; 0414 772 759

Web: www.nautek.com.au

 



MANUFACTURED BY

Edencraft Boats,

53 Riverside Road,

Newtown, Vic, 3220

Phone: (03) 5221 0444

Web: www.edencraft.com.au

 

 

 

Originally published in TrailerBoat # 254

Find Edencraft boats for sale.

 


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