The recession that started in 2007 was too much for the 30-year-old Mainship company and by 2012 it had to close its doors. Along came David Marlow, who bought its assets, which included Hunter Sailboats, and after consolidating production in Alachua, Florida, he has introduced an all-new Mainship line to replace the popular Pilot Series.
The Marlow-Mainship 37 offers two staterooms and two heads, making her a good choice for those cruising with guests or children. The attractive interior is finished in cherry, and the saloon’s sole sports hardwood planked flooring. The owner’s cabin features a large V-berth and two cedar-lined hanging lockers. The portside down-galley is nicely equipped with a separate refrigerator and freezer. For those who rarely have guests, the second cabin, directly across from the galley, can be ordered as a dinette. The helm station features a double raised bench seat.
Floor-to-ceiling, stainless steel framed glass separates the saloon from the cockpit. The glass door slides open and clever drop-down windows enhance airflow through the main cabin. The cockpit, measuring 10 feet by 6½ feet, features a reverse transom that folds down flush with the cockpit sole, creating a patio-like setting with easy access to the water. A small tender or a couple of kayaks can be pulled aboard. For dining alfresco, the saloon table can be moved to the cockpit.
Compared to the original Mainships, the new Marlow-Mainship 37’s construction is high-tech. Utilizing a resin infusion process, vinylester resins, superior fiberglass fabrics and Nida-Core above the waterline, the new hulls are stronger and lighter. The 37 with an LOA of almost 42 feet, for example, has the same displacement as the older Pilot 34. Kevlar and carbon-fiber are used to reinforce areas that are subject to high stress, such as the strut keel. This keel protects the prop in case of a grounding and it completely encloses the shaft to eliminate rotational drag. Sturdy handholds are strategically placed inside and out for safety at sea. Batteries and an optional generator are ideally located under the cockpit. The engine room is spacious, more so on the single-engine model. The quality of woodwork, fiberglass, and systems installation is above par, especially for a boat selling at this popular price point.
This boat is quiet thanks to the generous use of soundproofing material and its hardwood cabin sole. Cruising at displacement speeds of 7 to 8.5 knots, sound levels never exceeded 68 decibels. At 16 knots, the sound level is a respectable 75 decibels.
The single engine model, with its 320-horsepower Yanmar 320 common-rail engine, has two sweet spots: 2000 rpm at 8.4 knots and 3350 rpm at 16.3 knots. Data for the twin-engine model with its 220-horsepower Yanmar diesels suggests somewhat similar performance, with a top speed of 21 knots versus 19 knots for the single. Total fuel consumption of the twin version is reportedly not significantly higher than that of the single engine version—2 gph more at 3000 rpm, for example. It’s nice to have this choice, although the twin version costs an extra $23,000. The ride is soft and dry with no slamming or pounding. Even without using the bow or stern thruster, the boat’s handling is manageable and predictable. The small strut keel helps with directional stability, especially in following seas. Overall, this is a very capable, attractive coastal cruiser.
Marlow-Mainship, 800-771-5556; www.mainship.com
: 16,000 lb.
: 305 gal.
: 120 gal.
: 1/320-hp Yanmar 8LV diesel
: $427,120 including options, freight and commissioning
: 2/220-hp Yanmar 6BY3
*Range based on 90% of advertised fuel capacity.