Westcoast 46 - a clever cruiserBy Andy Adams

When in Rome – do as the Romans do, so when in BC we did as many lucky Western Canadians have done, and got aboard a Westcoast 46. It was worth the trip.

The Westcoast 46 is built by Westcoast Custom Yachts Limited which is headed up by the now legendary Forbes Cooper. The 46 is based on an impressively seaworthy and efficient hull design by Ed Monk Jr. The original hull design was actually marketed as the 43 foot Tolleycraft but has now been significantly modified and in fact, one of the most interesting aspects of these boats is that they really are built on a custom basis, one at a time to the owner's own specifications. The first choice you need to make is whether to order the 46-foot Express, 46 Sedan or the 46 Cockpit Motoryacht, which was the model we tested. Your next choice is to decide between single or twin-engine installation. The test boat was equipped with twin Cummins 270 diesels.

Overall the Westcoast 46 is 51'9" (45'9" bow to transom) on a beam of 14'3". Weight is typically in the 30,000-pound displacement range. This hull design has a full keel–a feature that adds strength, delivers surefooted tracking and also does a good job of protecting a single propeller from damage by dead heads and other debris, common in B.C. waters.

Equipped with twin engines, the propellers are not really protected by the keel but the boat becomes much easier to manoeuver when docking or in tight quarters although, a single with a bow thruster would be almost as manoeuverable.

Starting at the stern, the 46-foot Westcoast Cockpit Motoryacht has a durable and easily maintained fiberglass swim platform and a proper transom door. You enter into the aft cockpit which is large enough for easy boarding, has substantial scuppers, safe high sides and on our test boat, a beautiful varnished cap rail–but that's not where you’ll place your deck chairs. The cabin’s aft bulkhead is sloped forward and a set of steps leads up to the real aft deck above the aft cabin. This space suits deck chairs for relaxing. The deck had an effective nonskid finish and our test boat was fitted with a Nova Kool refrigerator and propane barbecue with tank storage underneath. Sturdy railings surround it for added security.

Westcoast 46 - Bridge HelmThe bridge deck is up four steps, was quite spacious and featured a centre-mounted helm with a ship's style stainless steel wheel, full analog instruments, a Venturi wind deflector and stainless steel handrails. The rails used on this boat were remarkably sturdy feeling, showed marvelous workmanship and featured oval-shaped tubing rather than the more common round tubing. A radar arch supports the Bimini top that fully covers the bridge deck. An L-shaped seat could accommodate four or five people, has generous storage inside and a triangular table turns this into a dining area.

It's easy to get around the topsides on this boat. The sturdy oval rails extend around the entire boat. The side decks are wide, flat and well down from the gunwale height providing very secure footing.

The forward cabin trunk is comfortably flat making a great place for coffee in the mornings at an anchorage. A massive varnished mahogany bow pulpit supported a Muir Cougar winch and the ground tackle arrangement was very seamanlike.

This yacht is designed to be used.

There are three different ways into the cabin: through a door from the aft deck, or through the sliding doors in the cabin sides on port and starboard. By the starboard door was a full interior helm station that enjoyed an excellent view out approximately 270° thanks to the massive glass areas and the high cabin roof. Forbes Cooper himself is 6'5" so you won't be surprised to discover generous headroom throughout this boat!

Three huge heavy-duty windshield wipers are there to keep the forward glass clear and the large side glass areas almost make the cabin too bright! Our test boat featured a full Honduras mahogany interior and the joinery work looked to be first class. In the salon, in addition to the lower helm station, there was a port side couch that folds out for double berth, handsome coffee table and on the port side cabinets built-in down the side. These can house a flat screen TV or entertainment system. Berber carpeting and a traditional headliner make it comfortable but easy-care.

Westcoast 46 - Lower helm dashboardIn the salon facing forward, is a very useful breakfast bar and ahead of that is the galley located down a few steps. Counter surfaces are genuine polished granite, not a composite and the galley-down layout has several advantages.

By being close down to the waterline, the effects of waves and water are minimized and there's lots of headroom above to help heat and cooking odours dissipate. For a yacht of this size, we felt the West Coast 46 had a particularly good galley with a two burner stove, microwave, opening side ports, homesized double stainless steel sinks and a particularly large amount of storage in the cabinets.

Opposite the galley is the main head that we felt was a very practical and usable size and features a fully enclosed shower stall and more excellent cabinetry. Forward again, is the vee berth and the best use of space here, is to order two singles, one on either side to maximize sleeping accommodations and probably sleeping comfort.

The owner’s stateroom will certainly be the impressive aft cabin. The clever design places a queen-sized spring mattress berth in the center and surrounds it with 20 mahogany drawers that extend out to the hull sides under the side decks. His and hers lockers, a full ensuite head with enclosed shower plus, a huge aft bulkhead window and six opening portholes make this a boat you could really live onboard.

The Westcoast 46 is certainly a clever cruiser in many ways! 

 

Fractional Yacht Ownership

A "clever cruiser" aspect to this particular boat is that it is available through One 4 Yacht Fractions, on Granville Island in Vancouver.

Their web site explains that in BC where you can go boating 12 months a year, if you use a yacht less than 14 days a year, you are better to charter a boat when you want one. If you spend from 14 to 90 days yachting each year, a fractional ownership is better and those doing 90 days or more a year should own their own boat.

With One 4 Yacht Fractions’ fractional ownership model, owners enjoy fully managed direct ownership of their yacht, as evidenced by their names being registered through Transport Canada Ship’s Registry as owners of the yacht (some choose 25% of shares registered, others choose 50%).The four owners might never meet. The management company schedules the use of the yacht, maintains and cleans it and basically takes all the effort out of ownership. Of course, you get a yacht worth four times what you might otherwise invest!

Westcoast 46 - Salon setteeFor the right owner, this is a clever cruiser solution to yachting!

 

Originally published in Canadian Yachting’s June 2006 issue.

 

Specifications

Power / Performance

Twin CUMMINS 270 diesel, mechanical fuel

injection, turbocharged and aftercooled,

5.9 L / 359 ci, 270 hp each.

Top Speed (GPS) rpm / mph

2,500 rpm 18.8 mph

Cruising Speed rpm / mph

1,500 rpm 9.2 mph

2,000 rpm 12.8 mph

Sound Levels At Cruise (2,000 rpm upper helm) 86 dbA

Length Overall – 51’9" / 15.7 M

Beam – 14’3" / 4.34 M

Weight approximate displacement – 30,000 / 13,607 kg

Fuel – 420 gal / 1,909 L

Base Price

$685,000

Price (One 4 Yacht Fraction share) $188,000*

* Includes One 4 option package, yacht inventory, moorage & insurance reserve

 

Boat supplied by:

One 4 Yacht Fractions

1826 Mast Tower Road

Granville Island

Vancouver, BC, V6H 4B6,

Tel: 604-669-2248

www.one4yacht.com

 

Photo Captions

Photo 1 –  The Westcoast 46 – a clever cruiser.

Photo 2 - The bridge helm has comfortable adjustable helm and companion seats that enjoy a commanding 360 degree view.

Photo 3 - The lower helm has ample dashboard space to mount electronics in easy view. The test boat had Furuno navigation systems but the custom nature of Westcoast yachts opens the door for other choices.

Photo 4 - The salon settee houses a fold out double berth in the L-shaped seating and two loose seats (with storage inside) give ample dining space around the hi/lo table, that features a granite inset that matches the galley counters.

 

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