As I prepared to pull into the slip in the McKinna 65 Pilothouse, the captain suggested we head belowdecks from the flying bridge. I was about to enter the salon when he said, "It'll be easier to see where you're going from the cockpit." To my delight, folding out of a molded transom console was a third control station. I faced aft and worked the shifters, easing into the slip.
This third station is one of many high-end items that come standard on the 65 Pilothouse. Another is the Wesmar RS-600 pitch and roll stabilizers (usually a $35,000 extra), part of a hydraulic system that includes a windlass and bow thruster-necessary because of the 65 Pilothouse's narrow 12' beam at the chines. Without these stabilizers, the boat's skinny waterline girth would make it vulnerable to beam seas and winds.
More standards include the 1,000-pound davit and stainless-steel 4"-diameter radar mast on the flying bridge, where there are also Stidd helm seats. The galley features a Sub-Zero refrigerator, and in the heads, you'll find Headhunter commodes. There's even a 12' Rendova RIB tender with a 40-hp Yamaha four-stroke outboard in the transom garage.
Belowdecks, the triple-stateroom layout has a spacious feel. The shortest headroom is 6'4" in the aft master stateroom; there's 7'9" worth in the passageway. The master head has a full-size bathtub, and the other two heads have roomy walk-in showers.
Performing routine maintenance on the 65 Pilothouse should be easy. The lazarette is home to the 27kW Onan genset with its own sea strainer, air-conditioning system strainers, and batteries. Move forward into the engine compartment and you'll find the water/fuel separators on the aft bulkhead. All wiring is done with tinned copper insulated with an irradiated coating so in case of an accidental overload, the insulation resists burning.
High Points: Third helm station makes docking easy. Spacious staterooms. Pocket door that separates master head and stateroom is an upscale touch. Onboard gasoline reservoir in garage for tender.
Low Points: Glass-tube in-line fuses are fragile and should be swapped for more modern push-in plastic-encased style. Needs gas struts for flying bridge lockers.
Toughest Competitor At 66'10'' and $1,933,523 with twin 820-bhp MAN diesels, the Fairline Squadron 65 has a maximum beam of 17'4'', but its chine beam is about 14'10", 2'10" wider than the 65 Pilothouse. As described, the Squadron 65 has an estimated top speed of 32.2 mph, but its displacement is also listed at 64,000 pounds. Fairline charges an extra $2,993 for a third helm station mounted at the stern, but a four-stateroom layout belowdecks instead of three comes standard, which could feel more crowded. On a fit and finish note, the Squadron 65 earns kudos for matching the wood grain between the cabinet frames and the hatches.
Displacement (lbs., approx.).....70,000
Minimum cockpit depth........2'8"
Max. cabin headroom .......7'9"
Fuel capacity (gal.)......1,100
Water capacity (gal.)......280
Price (w/standard power)....$1,730,000
Price (w/test power).....$1,730,000
Standard power Twin 800-bhp Caterpillar 3406E TA in-line-6 diesel inboards.
Optional power Twin diesel inboards to 2,000 bhp total.
Test boat power Twin 800-bhp Caterpillar 3406E TA in-line-6 diesel inboards with 893 cid, 5.4" bore x 6.5" stroke, swinging 32" x 38" five-bladed Nibral props through 2:1 reductions.
Standard equipment (major items) Hydraulic Wesmar RS-600 pitch and roll stabilizers; bow thruster; windlass; 12' Rendova RIB tender w/40-hp Yamaha outboard; 1,000-pound flying bridge davit; Twin-Disc EC-200 engine controls; chilled-water a/c; dual-speed windshield wipers; Headhunter high-pressure heads; 27kW Onan generator; 240v, 50a cablemaster; Sub-Zero 700 TC refrigerator/ freezer; Fisher-Paykel dish drawer; 4-burner stove; convection/ microwave; trash compactor; 42" plasma TV w/surround sound; 21" TV; 2 DVD players; AM/FM/CD stereo; central vacuum system; washer and dryer; Stidd flying bridge helm seats; wetbar; 2 Northstar 961 GPS/chartplotters; 2 Simrad 48-mile radars; 2 Robertson AP20 autopilots; 2 B&G depthsounders; 2 Icom VHF radios.