Scout 295 Abaco

A shark with a spark.

You tie all of your own skirts, rig your own ballyhoo, and spool each and every reel by hand in your garage. Chances are plain-old plain-old just doesn't cut it for a guy like you. And those mass-produced, vanilla, seen-one-seen-them-all 29' expresses are about as exciting to you as tofu, right? Then check out the new Scout 295 Abaco. If there's any one boat that stands tall in a crowded marketplace, this is it.

You'll notice the 295 Abaco is different at first glance, when you see the tumblehome aft in the hull. And the slightly rounded transom. And the twin Flexi Teak planked swim platforms outboard of the engines. And the foldaway galley dinette table. And the buttery-smooth, thickly padded cream-colored cushions embossed with the Scout logo. You'll know it by feel, too, when you throw down the hammers and the 295 Abaco leaps out of the hole like a sailfish chasing a kite bait. This boat feels incredibly light on its feet for its size, a fact partially explained by the "NuV3" hull design, a convex bottom with a variable-degree deadrise. Combined with the 22-degree transom deadrise and a no-wood, all-composite construction, this design also gives the 295 Abaco firm footing when it comes down on waves, a fact confirmed on test day by several full throttle launches off towering tugboat wakes. The 295 Abaco easily busts the 50-mph mark and feels sporty at the helm in all maneuvers except for opposing the motors, which, as is true on many outboard boats in this class, has minimal effect. Reversing the outboards in a mock billfish chase, however, was quite fun. The 295 Abaco's transom rises over the water instead of digging into it, and I was able to back up at a solid 10 mph without soaking the cockpit.

What about hooking that billfish? This boat has all the basics -- just check that standard equipment list -- and the Carolina-style side-support rocket launchers will help you set out a 10-line spread. The hull produces clean wakes outboard of the prop wash, and the 52-square-foot cockpit keeps your tackle, washdown, and livewell all close at hand. So before you check out a new 295 Abaco, you'd better get busy tying some more of those skirts.