About Zuzana Prochazka

Zuzana Prochazka is a writer and photographer who freelances for a dozen boating magazines and websites. A USCG 100 Ton Master, Zuzana has cruised, chartered and skippered flotillas in many parts of the world and serves as a presenter on charter destinations and topics. She is the Chair of the New Product Awards committee, judging innovative boats and gear at NMMA and NMEA shows, and currently serves as immediate past president of Boating Writers International. She contributes to Boats.com and YachtWorld.com, and also blogs regularly on her boat review site, TalkoftheDock.com.

TruPlug by Forespar

Truplug foam cones add to the safety of your vessel.

We all carry wooden plugs in case a thruhull fails.  That means I also carry a mallet and make sure all the plugs are appropriately sized for the hole I expect to create.  Sometimes, holes aren’t perfectly round so wooden plugs are a challenge and good luck calmly finding that mallet when water is gushing into your boat. 

So Forespar came up with a better idea – the TruPlug emergency plug that is a bright orange cone of foam, measuring 5×9 inches and weighing 8 ounces.  Because it’s foam, it is easily inserted into any hole up to 4” in diameter – just push and twist, no mallet required. 

Foam can conform to irregular shapes so it can be used in a variety of openings to stop or slow the ingress of water.  You can even cut the cone with a knife to whatever shape or size you need.  Given its flexibility, the TruPlug can be stuffed into an exhaust hose or hull breech and can be compressed by hand or pushed into a gap with screwdriver or other tool. 

One TruPlug is recommended for every ten feet of vessel length.  At $19.95 per cone, the TruPlug isn’t cheap compared to stumps of wood.  But if one saves your vessel because it’s able to fit and fix the problem, are you going to worry about twenty bucks? 

Outbound 52 Review Part II

Part two of two of a review of the Outbound 52 by Outbound Yachts

Yesterday, I talked about the smart and sassy Outoubnd 52 that not only looks great but has some very smart features.  Today, we’ll take a look below decks at an interior that looks great but is also very functional. 

The three step companionway on the Outbound 52 is easy to maneuver for anyone and makes the cockpit an extension of the interior. The raised saloon is light and airy and provides space for tanks and four 225 Amp AGM house batteries under the sole, keeping the weight low and centered.  This opens up stowage under settees and bunks and keeps the boat open and livable. 

The interior is semi-custom with three cabin layouts offered forward.  One is a center island berth cabin with an enormous head on port.  The other two offer a smaller head and separate shower on starboard with a cabin/office across and either an offset double or standard V-berth in the forward cabin. 

The spacious saloon features liquor and wine glass cabinets and two straight settees which will seat eight easily.  Outbound will need to investigate however, how to re-design and enlarge the table for a more functional dining configuration.  On starboard, the forward facing nav station is near the companionway and provides plenty of room outboard and forward for electronics with large displays.  A hinged electrical panel makes for easy access and 100 square feet of copper ground strap is glassed to the hull at the waterline, ready for SSB installation.  Now, that’s thinking ahead.

On port is a pass-through galley with a front and top loading reefer and top loading freezer.  There is no shortage of counter or storage space and drawers abound. A three burner Force 10 stove with oven, microwave and dual sinks inboard complete the galley which is functional and very much in the center of the social activity as well. 

The aft cabin is luxurious and is accessed via the galley on port or the head on starboard.  An island berth and a private head with walk-in shower make this a very comfortable space.  A washer dryer combo is accessible via the shower.  The joinery is impeccable throughout and interiors are offered in cherry or teak. 

The smartest space aboard is the “sea cabin” which is on starboard behind the nav station and across from the engine room.  It offers a sea berth that converts to a stainless steel topped workbench with plenty of drawer storage below for tools with nice proximity to the space that will most likely require them. 

Access to the engine is good with side access through a door, panel access under the hinged companionway and under the galley, and even via a floor panel of the cockpit which can be removed – a very nice feature when working on the Yanmar turbo charged 110HP diesel in the tropics.  A dual Racor system is standard and four baffled, fiberglass tanks store 250 gallons of fuel.  For safety, there are two electric bilge pumps and two Whale Gusher manual pumps – with handles mounted at the helm and in the cabin. 

Cabinets are louvered for good air circulation, lockers are lined with cedar, hatches have hinged screens, the headliner is easily removed in sections, there is courtesy lighting throughout the cabin sole, and both the floor boards and cabinets have positive, flush locks.  There are even two 30 amp shore power connections located fore and aft.  Anyone who has ever worked on an older boat where these features were not considered, will appreciate the smarts that went into the Outbound 52.

The Outbound 52 is a beautiful boat with an excellent finish, designed intelligently by people who have been offshore and who understand the challenges of short handed cruising.  The Outbound philosophy focuses on low maintenance, system simplicity, good access and practicality.  Mostly, the key is to minimize fatigue on long passages so the yacht can be handled by one member of a mature cruising couple with ease.

The specs are below again just in case you missed them yesterday.  For more information on this boat or other Outbound models, visit their website at www.outboundyachts.com.

Length overall   52’ 0”
Length of waterline  47’ 10”
Beam    15’ 4”
Draft standard   7’ 6” / 6’ 6”
Displacement   39,500 lbs
Ballast   14,000 lbs
Sail area  1312 sq. ft.
SA/D   18.35
D/L   160
Water capacity  225 gallons
Fuel capacity   250 gallons
Engine    Yanmar 100HP

Outbound 52 Review Part I

Part one of a two part review of the Outbound 52 sailboat review

Beauty and brains – it’s a tough combination to come by in just about any situation.  But with the 52, it looks like Outbound Yachts has managed it – again.  The big sister to the 44/46, the Outbound 52 is gorgeous – that part is evident from just looking inside and out.   But it’s the smart design that makes this boat a true blue water passagemaker worth investigating. 

The Tim Kernan designed sleek center cockpit (not an oxymoron in this case) has a fine entry, moderate beam, long waterline and relatively low freeboard unlike the tiered cake look of many modern models.  She has clean lines, uncluttered open decks and moderate displacement even at 39,500 pounds.  

The hull is hand-laid solid fiberglass with a vacuum bagged Divinicel cored deck.  The no-liner interior construction provides direct access to the entire hull and all the furniture and bulkheads are bonded to the hull and deck for added strength and stiffness.  There are two watertight bulkheads – forward and aft – and there is additional hull reinforcement at the turn of the bilge and bow. 

On deck, there are lots of smart features.  Forward, is a divided, self-draining chain locker easily accessible from the forward gear locker which forms the watertight bulkhead and provides easy access to the anchor rode.   A vertical Maxwell 2200 windlass with remote control is standard as is the 88# Delta primary anchor.  A muck trough just aft of the double bow roller ensure that wash water will run overboard instead of down the deck.

For safe footing underway, there is a 1.5” bulwark topped by a teak caprail.  The cockpit is deep.  In fact, the sole is 16” closer to the waterline than most center cockpit designs and there are four pad eyes ready to go in case conditions require clipping in.  An emergency steering tiller is fitted to the rudder post above deck where anyone who had to use it could actually see where they were going.

The wide aft deck has two large lazarettes and leads to a great reverse transom which steps down for easy boarding.  The Outbound 52 has possibly one of the best designed and most appealing integrated hard dodgers I have ever seen – one that adds to the design as opposed to detracting from its lines.

The Outbound 52 comes with either standard cutter or double headstay configurations. The keel stepped mast and triple spreader rig comes with in-mast furling as standard, or with Leisurefurl in- boom furling as an option.  All the Lewmar winches are two speed and self-tailing and the main furling winch is electric.  A Selden rigid vang is also standard and all the sails are Hood Vectran with vertical battens in the furling main.

The Outbound performs too.  The 52 will easily motor 8-9 knots and sail at 8-10 knots with 14-18 knots of true wind.  That’s plenty of speed to get out of the way of an oncoming storm or get to a port in timely manner.

Tomorrow we’ll discuss the Outbound 52 interior layout and why how it makes sense for offshore work.  Meanwhile – here are the specs that are impressive themselves.

Length overall   52’ 0”
Length of waterline  47’ 10”
Beam    15’ 4”
Draft standard   7’ 6” / 6’ 6”
Displacement   39,500 lbs
Ballast   14,000 lbs
Sail area  1312 sq. ft.
SA/D   18.35
D/L   160
Water capacity  225 gallons
Fuel capacity   250 gallons
Engine    Yanmar 100HP


Caliber 40 Review

Caliber 40 from Caliber Yachts fits the bill as a couple’s boat for blue water cruising.

Many soon-to-be blue water cruisers look for a good couple’s boat that would be a strong and reliable platform, is easy to manage but can carry all that is needed for a long term adventure and that won’t break the bank.  With parameters like that, the Caliber 40 comes to mind and it’s unique in that it’s a boat that (with modifications) has been built over several decades and is a proven performer.

Design, Construction and Performance
There are two flavors of the Caliber 40 available on the used boat market today.  The Caliber 40 and the Caliber 40 LRC (Long Range Cruiser) which I will discuss as one basic design with some key differences.  The McCreary brothers, now based in Clearwater, Florida, started the company as a garage boat builder in 1979 with the first of the series, the Caliber 28, appearing in 1981.  During the eighties, a full line of cruising boats was developed and in 1991, the Caliber 40 made the scene with the LRC version still being manufactured today.

The design is a very attractive cutter with a bowsprit and a bobstay that get the ground tackle well away from the bow during anchoring.  The boat has a straight sheer and a reverse transom with a small but very handy swim step and a boarding ladder.  The deck of the 40 is cored with marine plywood rather than with foam or balsa and the layup of the hull is solid fiberglass which accounts for some of the 21,600 lbs of displacement.  The Caliber 40 has a fully encapsulated, elongated fin keel that has an iron and concrete ballast of 9,500 pounds.  Her ballast to displacement ratio is a very respectable 44% which is good to find on a boat intended for bluewater use.  The rudder is skeg hung for protection and tracking and her waterline is just over 32 feet. 

The Caliber Yachts marketing team has named and trademarked every step of their design and construction process including steps that are good but basically conventional to boat building procedures.  The Quad-Seal Deck to Hull System™ is very well done and bonds the deck with a combination of through-bolting, 3M 5200, copolymer tape and good placement of the rubrail and the aluminum toerail.  The Integral Strength-Grid System ™ refers to the bonding of the fuel and water tanks to the structure of the hull which not only creates a double bottom effect, but also strengthens the boat and helps spread the loads evenly over the hull.  With the exception of the heads, no liners or molded pans are used in the construction and the result is a fairly stiff boat. 

“Reinforced Impact Zones” at the forward waterline and the forward edge of the keel are extra layers of fiberglass applied to spots that are likely to suffer damage on impact with floating or submerged obstacles.  There is also a watertight bulkhead in the bow, but more on this later.

The design is a moderately heavy displacement cruising boat so it takes a bit of wind to get her going.  However, like most cruising boats of this class, sailing 5 – 5.5 knots in 10 – 12 knots of wind on a beam reach is not bad and can provide 140 mile plus days in the tradewinds.  Although the sheeting angles have been tightened as the tracks have been brought inboard, sailing to within 60 degrees of the apparent wind can be expected.  Although the boat will kick around in heavy seas, it will do so no more than other cruising boats and it will remain fairly comfortable in big waves as well as big winds. 

Cockpit & Rigging
The T-shaped cockpit is roomy and good for entertaining, but also deep and safe at sea with three large cockpit drains and high back rests.  There are two lazarettes, one for the propane tank and a good sized, self-draining space for storage on the other side.  There are also cut outs in the deep coaming sides for extra storage of smaller items or radios. The freshwater shower is perfect for a quick rinse on the swim step.  The Caliber 40 has two vents and six hatches and two dorades to provide good ventilation.  I noticed that for a bluewater boat, the cleats and chocks could be larger and the standard #48 Lewmar primaries seem to be undersized as well.  The anchor locker forward is accessible via the deck and is conveniently divided.

The single spreader, keel stepped rig is easily managed by a couple or by a singlehander.  The inner forestay can be removed and secured at the deck near the mast, or can accommodate a roller furling staysail that, along with the running backstays, will be very useful in a big blow. The main is fully battened with two deep reefs, the rigid boom vang was standard, and all lines are lead aft so a short-handed crew can raise and lower the sails and reef from the cockpit.  Chainplates are connected to the deck and through-bolted to the bulkheads and access to them is quite good down below.

Layout & Accommodations
The Caliber is a modern two-cabin design with 6’2” headroom throughout.  The interior layout resembles that of the Passport 40 starting with a spacious head and separate stall shower forward.  Continuing aft, the master stateroom has a Pullman style offset double to port with lockers and plenty of storage to starboard.   The saloon features a 6’2”, L-shaped settee to port that converts to a double berth.  There is also a straight settee to starboard and a very useful dinette table that folds down from the bulkhead and out to join both settees to comfortably seat six for dinner. 

The galley is to port with a double sink inboard, and a two-burner stove and oven along with a top loading refrigerator outboard.  There is a second, and very small head to port that is accessible from the saloon or the aft cabin.  The outboard facing nav station is next to the galley.  Some owners have installed a Lexan divider between the galley and the nav desk to protect the station from whatever may be splashing around on the stove.  At 5’ 5”, I found the nav station to be a tight squeeze.  Taller boaters will have a trouble finding a place for their legs or using the station for extended periods of time. 

Good light is provided by fourteen stainless steel, opening ports that are designed for offshore work and the boat is finished in nice, hand-rubbed teak with good storage below the settees. 

Systems & Mechanical
Engine access to the standard 50 HP Yanmar is not bad for an aft cockpit boat.  The top step of the companion way ladder opens easily to provide access to the top of the engine including a quick check on the belts, oil and coolant. The entire companion way box may be removed for access to the Racor, the raw water strainer and the entire front of the engine.  Additional access is via a side compartment in the aft cabin.  The standard Yanmar will power the boat at approximately 6 knots at 2000 rpm cruising speed, or 7 knots at the 3000 rpm maximum.  It is projected that the LRCs, with their increased fuel capacity, have a range of 1,484 miles.

Batteries on the Caliber are carried far aft and behind the engine, and access, mostly via the lazarette or the aft cabin, is not great.  It would behoove an owner to invest in gel cells or other maintenance free type batteries because a periodic water check on standard lead acid cells would probably end up being put off due to the inconvenience and this could lead to problems.

Tankage on these boats is where some of the key differences, strengths and problems lie.  The Caliber 40 LRC was introduced in 1994 and the primary innovation was the substantially increased fuel capacity.  Caliber realized that a passagemaker with 46 gallons of fuel would rely constantly on favorable wind conditions so they added another 160 gallons or so.  There are two fuel tanks and two water tanks, all aluminum, on the centerline under the cabin sole and both have separate delivery systems which is well thought out in case there is contamination of either water or fuel. 

There have been problems reported with the holding tank however.  The early boats carried a 110 gallon holding tank, integral to the boat and under the anchor locker.  When combined with ground tackle and chain, this makes for a tremendous amount of weight forward and an alarming amount of sewage to carry on a boat of this size.  The holding tank served the aft head as well which left long hoses under the cabin sole to fill and potentially clog. 

Additionally, the holding tank formed the watertight bulkhead mentioned earlier and it was glassed to both the deck and the hull at the bow.  The key to the problems were the screens in the tank vents that clogged easily if they were not cleaned regularly and several owners reported creating suction and a vacuum as they pumped the head – one so serious, it caused a messy delamination of the hull.  These screens were also used on the water tanks which could leave a water pump running dry as it operated against a vacuum in the tank.  Be sure to inspect the hull around the holding tank when considering a used boat and check all the screens.  You may be able to contact Caliber Yachts for replacements or information on the construction of a particular model year. 

Wrap Up
Caliber 40 LRCs are still built in Florida today.  These later models are the same basic design but they have benefited from owner and dealer feedback, much of which Caliber Yachts has taken to heart. The selling price on the 40s moves between $143,000 and $159,000 but the more recent LRC versions are listing at $75,000 –100,000 higher.  With some clever modifications to carry extra fuel, the Caliber 40 provides a lot of value for a couple that is looking for that strong, seaworthy and easily sailed boat to take them to paradise.

Specs for Caliber 40 and Caliber 40 LRC
Designer:    Michael McCreary
LOA:   40’ 11”
LWL:   32’ 6”
Beam:   12’ 8”
Draft:   5’ 1”
Ballast:  9,500 lbs
Displacement:  21,600 lbs
Sail Area:  739 sq ft
Fuel Tankage:  46 gallons (212 gallons LRC)
Water Tankage: 156 gallons (179 gallons LRC)
Ballast/Disp  44%
Disp/Length  281
SA/Disp  15.25

Aqua Camper By Excel Marine

Camping on land or water, the Aussie AquaCamper by Excel Marine certainly is an interesting option. 

 Want to go fishing or camping? Now you don’t have to choose and can do both with the Australian Aqua Camper that is a both a boat and a tent. 

Sure it looks a little strange but the Aqua Camper is designed for calm waters of lakes and rivers and can take two people fishing overnight with no problem.  And you can set up camp in the RV park without being in the water. 

The Aqua Camper is available in “ready to go” packages or you can have one custom outfitted with cots, a table and chairs and other accoutrements by the New South Wales company.  The boat is approximately 14 feet long, 9 feet wide and weighs 1200 lbs.  It comes in two metallic colors and a trailer is available. 

Since I can’t find a dealer stateside, I can’t find a price and you might have to have this shipped in.  Of course, you could argue that most boats are campers of a sort anyway. 




Bow Step by Quality Mark

Quality Mark has come up with another great product to make your boat loading and unloading even easier.  Check out their BowStep which is a folding ladder that will get you up onto the bow or into your boat from the ground safely and without ever getting your feet wet.

The BowStep mounts onto the forward part of your trailer and three angle adjustments provide the right angle of ascent for any installation.  The slip resistant treads and extended handle make it safe for anyone including kids.  When not in use, the ladder hinges up and out of the way. 

You can use the BowStep on the launch ramp to get in the boat without having to get wet but you can use it in your driveway too when cleaning or loading the boat.  The BowStep comes with a left or right handed handle and it only has three steps so it’s lightweight and unobtrusive on your trailer. 

The BowStep comes in black with red treads and retails for $299.  For more information or purchase options, visit www.qualitymarkinc.com.

Bev Barge by Weekend Products

If it’s too hot to party on the boat this toasty July, try hosting a get-together in the water with Weekend Products’ BevBarge, a floating party island that will make your gathering the hit of the anchorage. 

BevBarge is a durable polyethylene floating table that holds drinks, food, a cooler, games and a bit of shade to keep it all protected.  Measuring 65” L x 36” W x 4” tall, the BevBarge is a rigid structure that will keep your beer cold and your snacks out of the sun.  Jump in a floating tube, tether yourself to the barge and toss over an anchor so the party stays put, and all you’ll need for the rest of the day is a lot of sunscreen. 

The BevBarge has two recessed serving areas, 12 cup holders, a 36-quart, hard sided Igloo cooler that will hold up to 56 drink cans, a 72” wide umbrella and eight 4’ inner tube attachment lanyards, so snacks and drinks are never out of reach.  The Bev Barge comes with two puncture-resistant tubes and you can order more tubes or even an optional anchor with 20 feet of line.  The BevBarge base and cooler weigh just under 20 lbs. 

The Bev Barge retails for $250 and comes with the cooler, umbrella, eight lanyards, two inner tubes and a three-year warranty.  An optional tray to replace the cooler, is sold separately.
Look for this product in Overton’s and select MarineMax stores, or if you’re shopping in the air, Skymall catalogs.  Visit www.weekendproducts.com for more information.

LG-Sea-Lander Dock Cart

Summer’s here and the docks are crowded and that means dock carts are scarce. 

I’ve seen civilized adults turn sneaky, bitchy and downright aggressive over a dock cart on a Sunday afternoon when it’s time to head home.  So why not bring your own?   No, I don’t mean your kids that you load up with coolers and duffel bags but a real cart you can take with you anywhere.

The LG-Sea-Lander is a soft-sided, folding cart that holds up to 80 lbs of weight. It measures 17 ½” X 17 ½” X 34” and weights 9 lbs.  It is made of tear, UV and mildew resistant vinyl and a rigid frame.

With its two poly wheels, the LG-Sea-Lander stands up for easy loading and even has a cover in case you’re moving in the rain.  It manages angled ramps and uneven terrain pretty well and is easy to fold and stow. 

The LG-Sea-Lander might get your post weekend runs to the car down to one or two but it is great for cruisers too who don’t have a car and may be making the provisioning trek in foreign lands on foot.

The LG-Sea-Lander retails for $95-$125 depending on where you buy it.  Visit www.lgsealander.com for more information. 


Hylas Yachts Market Overview

State of the market for Hylas brokerage yachts by Richard Jordan:

I’m launching a brokerage focus soon so I’m kicking it off with a guest blog today from Richard Jordan, president of Jordan Yacht and Ship Company, a Fort Lauderdale brokerage that has specialized in the sale of pre-owned Hylas Yachts since 1992.  I’ve admired Hylas boats for a long time and met Richard years ago when looking at a pre-owned 44.  Today, I ogle the 46, a beautiful center cockpit model built to go the distance. 

Richard has kindly agreed to share his views on the state of the market for Hylas yachts.  He writes a blog called Waves at http://www.jordanyachts.com/blog.

New Hylas Market
Hylas yacht prices are stabilizing in the United States.  Here is a look at what happened during the economic woes of the last two years, and how the downturn affected Hylas yachts both new and used.

Hylas was affected by the 2008 to 2010 economic downturn like all yacht manufacturers.  Clients defaulted across the board on their range of 46 to 70 foot bluewater cruisers.  For me, of note was a lingering new 46.  The company offered this fully equipped 46 for sale for considerably less than sailaway.  The purchaser benefited a Panda Fisher generator, Schaeffer in-boom furling, and a bow thruster among the extras.  First, she was offered shrink wrapped at Queen Long’s factory in Kaohsiung, Taiwan.  A fellow broker, Tom Harney, in the office said, “Hey, we should all chip in together and buy her.  That is quite a deal.”  But even with such benefits, there were few takers.  Eventually, they shipped her to Riverbend, here in Fort Lauderdale, commissioned her, and sold her as the economy improved in mid 2010.  I noted similar special prices on 49 and 70 footers.  For those who were in the market, there were great opportunities.

What really happened to Hylas during the downturn was a shortening of their wait times.  We saw an unprecedented drop in new orders along with the defaults.  This fall off led to immediate access to the 46 and 49 versions which are the oldest designs and less popular than the 54 and 70 footers.  While in the past prospects waited a couple years, at the bottom the wait time shrunk to six months.  The 54 and 70 maintained wait times of a couple years.  Queen Long stayed active throughout.  The company was able to work through a backlog of orders without new deposits coming in.  While meandering through Riverbend one day, I counted no less than four 46s, two 54s, and two 70s being commissioned, ready for delivery, or being serviced.

Hylas 46

The new market turned around with the start of the boat show season in 2009.  The Newport Show in September was much better than the previous year.  At the Annapolis Show in October, activity really picked up, and we even had a call during the show for a late model 46.  Hylas Yachts had their full line at Annapolis and made a couple of sales.  From Annapolis until Miami, we consistently received calls for new and used Hylas yachts.  Miami was quiet and disappointingly small because of a change in venue, but Hylas managed to bring in both a 46 and 70.  While quiet, real people were there, not just lookers.

Brokerage Hylas Market
I thought more people would have put their yacht up for sale during the economic downturn.  But owners were a patient group and decided not to seek the bottom in a bottomless market.  They waited for the slow market to turn around before putting their Hylas up for sale.  In 2009, pre-owned Hylas yachts were in low supply and mostly left over from 2008 before markets went south.  We listed and sold two 46s in 2008.  In contrast, we listed two 46s in 2009 but neither sold until early 2010.  In 2010, we have seen many more brokerage Hylas yachts on the market and noted multiple sales of 54s and 46s.  There are even two 70s on the brokerage market, a welcoming sight.  These pre-owned 70s are the first of the Hylas flagship to come available.

Hylas 54 Raised Saloon

As a broker I have seen how closely yacht buying is tied to the stock market.  Those who did not buy in 2008 saw the size of their yacht shrink along with their portfolio.  One client had been looking at new 49s.  But with the downturn, he had turned his interest to old 47s.  “I just see how much more boat I can buy, and with the drop in the value of my house, I really have to re-evaluate my goals.” 

With stocks recovering in 2010, clients have heavier pockets again.  They adjust their expectations in correlation to the value of their portfolios.  Now, clients feel like they have extra money to spend because the stock market has risen and home prices have stabilized.  But many are purchasing at less ambitious levels.  My friend is still looking for a 47 and not ordering a new 49.

Although prices have stabilized and demand has normalized for both new and used Hylas yachts, this will be a long road for complete recovery.  The new normal is here.  If you are in the market, there are excellent prices and an increasing supply of brokerage Hylas yachts.

Boat Expenditure Stats from NMMA

Here are some interesting stats from the National Marine Manufacturers Association  (NMMA). 

These are the top ten boating states, ranked in order by total annual expenditures for new powerboats, motors, trailers and accessories in 2009.  (Keep in mind, that does leave a lot of the market out of the equation.)
Michigan, Florida and California have always been tops in the number of DMV vessel registrations but expenditures tell a different story with Michigan down in 9th position. 

Florida ($1.2 billion)
Texas ($906 million)
California ($417 million)
North Carolina ($395 million)
New York ($381 million)
Louisiana ($370 million)
Washington ($339 million)
Delaware ($330 million)
Michigan ($317 million)
Minnesota ($305 million)

Florida and Texas must have some big boats because the gap between them and the rest of the pack is huge.  This definitely tells the old 80/20 story with the top two states adding up to almost the same as the next 8.