40-footer sold locally is fast, comfortable, seaworthy
By Jack Kintner
Bob Brooks had about a foot of clearance on either side while exiting his moorage in the Blaine Marina, with boats on one side and a low-tide mudflat on the other.
Yet despite a fresh cross breeze the 40-foot Regal 4080 fly bridge cruiser he was piloting was as solid and predictable as a train on a track, guided by its two Volvo 370 CID diesels turning counter-rotating props and balanced by a powerful bow thruster.
And balance is the word. Despite the tricky conditions and tight quarters, Brooks was so relaxed he might have been sharpening pencils instead of guiding a half-million dollar yacht out into a somewhat lumpy Semiahmoo Bay for a test run. “And you should say that since the new models are coming out, we’ve discounted this one, a 2008 model.” Brooks has knocked the price down a little over 25 percent to $385,000. Over half his sales out of his Blaine and Mount Vernon operations go to Canada.
But back to the boat. This boat’s Florida heritage is obvious in its generous outdoor spaces, from a well-padded foredeck to a generous swim platform in the back that features a retractable heated fresh-water shower. For our somewhat less tropical weather Brooks has installed an optional bridge cover that effectively seals off the command bridge without compromising visibility.
There is no inside steering station, a duplication that’s seldom used or necessary in this kind of boating, Brooks said. Instead, the space down below is a well-lit combination of cherry wood cabinets, over-sized cushions and wall-to-wall carpeting. The galley is to starboard and sits directly under the expansive windshield that acts like a giant skylight for what’s always the most popular spot on the boat.
An owner’s stateroom with an angled queen bed is forward, with cedar-lined closets and its own door into the shared head. Inside there is not only a stand-up shower but it’s cleverly sealed inside a rotating plexiglass cylinder that keeps the water where it belongs.
The galley features a microwave, refrigerator, freezer, trash compactor and even a built-in coffee maker that sits on a Corian counter top. The feeling one gets down below is one of luxurious warmth paired with a functionality that would make spending two to three weeks on board a real joy.
It sleeps four in two compartments that have doors and another two, or a litter of kids, on a bunk made by lowering the galley table.
Plus there’s a double bed-sized platform on the bridge and large sleeping pads that snap down on the foredeck, so there’s a lot to choose from when snoozing.
Brooks left the Blaine marina and powered out into the two to three-foot chop that quickly increased to four and five foot swells and “lumps” out in Semiahmoo Bay.
The big fly bridge cruiser remained solid and comfortable at speed – 27 knots – and was even more comfortable at a more sedate 22 to 24 knots, working its way through the chop and slop with a gentle sway that was quite easy to take.
Noise levels inside the cabin while underway were acceptable, and on the bridge it was almost quiet.
The ride came to an end too quickly as Brooks once again demonstrated the superb control the skipper has over this 10-ton 13 foot wide floating palace.
It’s both comfortable and a good, safe, sea kindly craft that bears examination, and is right here in Blaine. For more information, contact Blaine Marine Services at 360/371-5700.