Getting away is an integral part of the great American dream. For yacht owners who love to cruise with friends or family, the idea of trading shoreside routine for a few days or a week or more afloat beckons on a daily basis. The folks at Carver Yachts who plan, build and deliver cruisers and motoryachts like the new 41 CMY keep this concept firmly in mind.
One of the mandatory principles of getting away means finding not only a new anchorage or destination, but it also implies carving out a bit more time and space for yourself. For Carver, this includes time and space on board as well. The truth about cruising is that after several days together, everybody-spouses, siblings, friends-needs a little time away from each other. And this is where Carver's designers have excelled-giving the new 41 CMY features that promote togetherness yet allow privacy when desired.
At anchor, tied to the dock or underway, the exterior intrigues with possibilities. On the flying bridge are two pivoting helm chairs, an L-shaped bench that seats three adults and a small wet bar that can house an optional refrigerator. It's an inviting elevated platform from which to admire your surroundings or, more practically, to keep watch on kids and guests enjoying the water. Of course, this is also an excellent viewpoint for more mundane pursuits, such as running the boat (and, with all the extra seating, for keeping the helmsman company).
Molded stairs with courtesy lights and good handholds connecting the bridge to the raised aft deck make access much more comfortable than having to climb a ladder. The standard fiberglass hardtop adds protection from the elements and covers the entire 60-square-foot aft deck, which has a built-in bench seat across the back as well as enough room for a couple of folding chairs. The tall locker on the centerline forward is outfitted for fender and line storage, but an optional icemaker is available if the idea of dashing below every time you need ice begins to seem tiresome. And to help protect this area from too much wind when running, two clear acrylic wind doors are standard.
Wing doors open and lock into place when you need to go forward for anchor or line-handling duties. Large-diameter, welded grab rails above the side windows and on top of stout stanchions, set in the molded toerail, add security for those using the side decks. A windlass package with anchor, rope and chain is standard to take the effort out of anchor retrieval, and four large stainless steel cleats that will take stout docking lines are positioned for easy access and fair leads to the dock.
Molded stairs also lead down to the 57-square-foot aft cockpit, a grand retreat for a couple of folding chairs when the yacht is at rest and the owners want a private getaway for sunning, reading or, a little less privately, watching swimmers and divers using the 35-square-foot boarding platform. There are two shallow lockers with doors on the inside of the transom for shore-service hook-ups-including two 30 amp connectors, one of which is dedicated to the standard three-zone, 33,000 BTU air conditioner/heater-plus TV, telephone and water. Carver includes two 50-foot shorepower cords as part of the package, plus a 7.3 kW gasoline genset (an 8 kW Kohler is available for boats with diesel power) to keep your systems live no matter where you're boating.
One of the best features of this new design is the private, screened sliding door leading into the master cabin aft. Even with guests or children in the forward stateroom, and perhaps another one or two in the saloon, sleeping on the Flexsteel foldout bed/settee, you can get up early to explore or find coffee and breakfast ashore, or stay up late to enjoy a starlit anchorage, without rousing or disturbing anybody.
Solitude is golden. And if you're keeping to a schedule, such an arrangement also means you can slip up to the flying bridge and get an early start, letting the crew snooze a little longer. This boat is set up so that it can easily be operated by one person or-more enjoyably-a couple. And the performance is stellar, particularly with the optional 370 hp Volvo D6 inboards on our test boat. Factory figures show an approximate fuel burn of 28 gph at a cruise speed of 22 knots, giving a range of roughly 254 nautical miles and 11.5 hours of running time, with a 10 percent reserve, before refueling. At a top speed of 26 knots, the burn rate increases to 41 gph, and the range, with the same reserve, is slightly less at 205 nautical miles, with a running time of 8.1 hours.
Handling the 41 CMY is straightforward, exactly the kind of consistent, confidence-building ride I've come to expect from Carver's designs. Hydraulic steering is a real arm saver, and large flush-mount trim tabs make balancing the boat easy in a crosswind. You won't need them most of the time, however, as this modified-V hull comes up onto plane in 12 to 13 seconds with this engine package and makes quick work of wind chop and wakes. I was impressed not only with the low-speed maneuverability afforded by the large, four-bladed props, but also with the optional bow thruster that kicked the nose quickly and positively to one side or the other to simplify docking.
The saloon, which has 6 feet, 5 inches of headroom and Carver's signature two-level windows (for good views out the sides whether you're sitting or standing), is raised slightly above the galley and dinette level forward. It blends easy-on-the-eyes decorator fabrics with smooth-to-the-touch cherry wood cabinetry, doors and dinette tabletop. The soft carpet underfoot gives the saloon a distinct home-like charm that will put you and your guests at ease. The comfortable Flexsteel settee and chair provide out-of-the-way comfortable seating, perfect for watching the 20-inch LCD TV with DVD and AM/FM/CD stereo and satellite radio system. The L-shaped galley is sized for hearty-meal preparation, and includes items as standard that you really don't want to be without: recessed coffeemaker, built-in convection/microwave/grill oven, two-burner smooth-top electric range and a side-by-side refrigerator/freezer. Both staterooms have private-access head compartments, but the split-function layout of the head in the master stateroom is especially useful.
Lift the engine hatches in the saloon sole and you get a good idea of the kind of yacht that Carver builds. Double-gusseted steel plates anchor the engine to the stout fiberglass stringer system. Aquamet prop shafts and dripless shaft logs transfer power to Nibral props held in place by strong 421 manganese bronze struts-though you'll have to wait to see the last two components when the boat is in the slings. You'll also have to visit the factory to see the way veteran Carver employees hand lay-up the solid fiberglass bottom with Knytez substrates and a vinylester barrier coat. Tinned, color-coded wiring harnesses, as well as plumbing, fuel line and cooling water runs, are all neatly installed and well protected against chafing.
With 50 years of experience building quality cruisers and motoryachts, and a dedicated work force that sometimes runs into second and third generation craftsmen, Carver continues to produce high-quality yachts for the getaways of your life. They're on the leading edge of companies that integrate latest-technology materials and methods, but they also never lose sight of the point of all this innovation: the customer's comfort.
Carver Yachts, (920) 822-3214; www.carveryachts.com.