Can You Hear What I'm Seeing?
The 310 Sundancer's helm bench contributes largely to the good visibility and ergonomics I experienced while running and docking, thanks to the generous amount of travel incorporated into its foreand- aft adjustability. But this doublewide bench is part of a larger theme, one I've seen implemented and improved upon during the last two years aboard several Sea Ray models. Let's call it using the same space for two purposes. Aboard the 310 Sundancer, there are five key spots in which this occurs and the helm bench is one of them.
First, there's a driver's seat with room for your mate. But dockside, release a catch and it swivels around to face the cockpit and those seated at the L-shaped aft lounge. But look quick. That lounge changes shape and purpose as easily as the helm bench. A good tug releases the backrest, allowing it to lie flat and form a sunlounge. (That it does so while retaining a lazarette for stowage is cool.) Other boats have aft lounges with fold-out backrests. Monterey's 300 SCR ($180,949 powered like my test boat) has a neat morphing aft lounge. But I haven't seen one yet that uses the other leg of the "L" the way Sea Ray does aboard the 310 Sundancer. Pull open the stowage drawer under the seat's base. It rests securely on the cockpit sole. Now insert the cushion from the lounge and you have a cockpit dinette, allowing guests to sit around the table facing each other. And you don't lose the stowage space in the drawer when it's used as a seat base. There's plenty of room, despite the proximity of the wetbar just opposite.
The fourth place multiple uses are gotten from one space is in the cabin. Here, Sea Ray installed a mini-dinette opposite the galley. This converts to a single sleeper, but I'd leave it erected, as it's a great place to sit, enjoy a cool one, read Boating, check your Blackberry, or just watch the light change while swinging at anchor. This dinette is in addition to the traditional table for the convertible V-berth, also standard. As a bed, you can't beat this berth for size: I taped it at 6'5"-by-6'5". Huge.
The cabin's standard maple sole complements its hardwood cabinetry. A foredeck skylight, plus hatches and ports, allow gobs of light. The head is equipped with a vacuum-flush commode, not a cheaper, water-wasting "electric head" that other builders often foist on us. The galley sink is large, and just as important, it's vertical sided. Ever wondered what happens to one of those chi-chi bowl sinks when it's half full and a wake rocks your slip or anchorage?
Yep, from performance and efficiency to amenities and equipment, Sea Ray's 310 Sundancer embodies the best of everything-including the kitchen sink.
MSRP: Test Power - $172,900
Contact: 800-772-6287 www.searay.com