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Bertram 390

Discussion in 'Bertram Yacht' started by colad, Oct 5, 2011.

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  1. colad

    colad New Member

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    Hi All,
    New here, but a great set of forums, I am in the market for a sportfish and am currently looking at a 02 Cabo 35 flybridge vs 02 Bertram 390. Anyone here have any experience on the 390? how is the fishability? How is the ride? any known issues out there I should be aware of? Thanks for any advice!
  2. SHAZAM

    SHAZAM Senior Member

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    The 39 is the David Napier designed 37 Bertram stretched two feet. The problem with the Ferretti redesigned 39 is that the CG is too far forward, due in part to the placement of the fuel tank forward of the engines which IMO moves the CG of the boat too far forward and upsets the boats running attitude. The problem is compounded by the engine installation which is achieved by the use of V drives which again further aggravates the CG problem. The CG is especially sensitive on this hull form as it's a Deep V which runs best when the CG is further aft.

    Besides that, all but a very small number of these boats (perhaps less than five) were built with Volvo 74P's which IMO are not the greatest engines out there. There were a couple built with 3126 Cats, I think one or two built with C series Cummins and if memory serves me correctly, maybe one with 440hp Yanmars.

    I'd definitely take the 390 over the Cabo, if your budget would allow it, take a close look at the 450 Bertram, it's far superior to the 39.
  3. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Well, the 35' Cabo FB is a fairly good riding boat (better ride than the express) and a touch wet, but it's only 35'. It is very stable at trolling speeds and running. I ran one from Ft. Lauderdale to Placencia, Belize without any issues and they are built very strong and the wiring and everything else is top notch.

    I've never heard things about the 390 Betram and don't know anything about the 45' Bertram. However, if you're going to get close to or over 40', Go with the 40' Cabo FB. It has a great ride and is a great boat.
  4. colad

    colad New Member

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    Thanks for the input, I would love a 40 Cabo FB in a heartbeat but it is not in the $ cards. It just so happens these two boats are essentially at the same price point for the actual ones I am looking at. I am leaning towards the bertram, though the Cabo feels a bit more fishy. Right now the wife likes the bertram layout much better...

    any other opinions are welcome!

    Thanks!
  5. SHAZAM

    SHAZAM Senior Member

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    what's your budget?
  6. colad

    colad New Member

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    SHAZAM,
    our budget is ~250k
    Thanks!
  7. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    I'd also look at Tiara, I ran a 39' FB a few years back and it was a really nice little boat. Even though they're not known for FB boats and don't make too many of them. The 35' Cabo is also solidly built and engineered, albeit a little wet. I'm not sure what else to recommend in that size range. I've just been really turned off by Bertrams quality from 2003 on.
  8. Williamburris

    Williamburris New Member

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    I have owned a 390 for five years. The only issue I have had I the edc on the Volvo’s. Other than that it it my all time favorite boat! I have owned Cabo, and tiara! If I had to choose again today it would be the Bertram hands down.
  9. PacBlue

    PacBlue Senior Member

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    I always liked the 390 design on paper, seems to be a great layout for an under 40'.

    I thought the V-drives balanced the location of the fwd engine room fuel tank, how has this worked for you, would love to get some feedback? Does the boat change trim much as you burn fuel?
  10. Breckster

    Breckster New Member

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    I've always used a "fair" amount of forward tab on my 37 Bertram.. would've thought a little bit more forward CG would be of help personally?
  11. PacBlue

    PacBlue Senior Member

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    That's my interest. I know the for and aft balance is a fine line at rest and underway, really curious if they were able to get a near neutral balance with the forward fuel tank and the v-drive setup. It is a definite challenge in a 39' boat, but would be a nice alternative , if successful, to having all your fuel under the cockpit.
  12. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Sport fishers usally run a bit extra bow high. In calm water tabs are used.
    I'd rather use tabs than not able to get my bow up in the chop or in an inlet.
  13. PacBlue

    PacBlue Senior Member

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    For a smaller SF with cockpit fuel tanks and no fwd fuel tank, the trim becomes impacted when you burn like half of the cockpit fuel. This changes the static (at rest trim) and the dynamic (running) trim, and limits the overall effectiveness of trim tabs. Hopefully, some of this is offset with all that fish that is caught for the day :)

    The Naval Architect'ss goal would be to have a neutral trim situation for both static and dynamic conditions, where the boat is not affected by the consumption of fuel. A 43 Mikelson with v-drives under the cockpit is one example of an attempted solution: https://mikelsonyachts.com/m43/

    An example of a "neutrally balanced" traditional SF was the Gamefisher 40, where I have been told that trim tabs were not needed.
  14. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    That Michelson video is an example of what I was leaning to. In a tight inlet, following swell, that bow was to low.

    Neutral?? Your almost going to have port/stb list issues. Any boat without tabs with a beam wind or mother-in-law aboard will miss not having tabs. So have a high bow, push it down for flat water, trim port/stb when needed and raise that bow when needed.

    Some here are acting like a high bow or using tabs is bad??
  15. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    It's always best to have a bow high attitude and use 1/2 trim tabs on a SF. I've run a lot of SF with a bow and stern tank and they all definitely run faster and better keeping the aft tank full and the trim tabs 1/2 way down and the tabs give them stern lift. I totally dislike boats that run flat and need or don't have tabs as coming in an inlet with a following sea.
  16. PacBlue

    PacBlue Senior Member

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    The point I am making is that when designing any boat you want to manage your liquid consumables and put them in a position not to negatively impact trim or a list. A 3-4 degree natural running attitude is optimum with or without tabs. And that was the reasoning behind the fuel tank placement on the 39 Bertram. I am just curious if it paid off versus a more conventional approach like the 37 Bertram.

    Your 58 Bertram with a 15 degree monohedron hull needs some trim angle, especially with that forward engine room, other wise you will feel like you are plowing.
    The Mikelson is a semi-planing hull that does not ride high out of the water and does just fine in afolliwing sea as the balance is worked out with lower trim angles.

    Trim tabs and interceptors are useful for varying load conditions, and with modern electronics can do active trim control, but there is a design point to strive for that minimizes the need for tabs. That is when the designer has nailed it pure.
  17. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    The experience I have with the Feretti era Bertrams and the forward fuel tanks, is they really screwed up the ride and trim. Now my experience is with the 57's and 63's. If I remember the water tank was in the stern but only like 250-300 gallons. If the holding tank was full the boat was a submarine...….if the fuel tank was full, again a total submarine.....spray over the hardtop in 3-5' seas at any speed... Full of fuel the exhausts would be almost out of the water on the 57' like a normal SF that was empty on fuel.....….when the owner was on board, I'd keep the fuel tank at 1/2 or lower. then it rode right. Then the 57' started disintegrating at a year old and he got rid of it and got a 61' Viking!

    I have seen some designers nail it pure in the initial design......but then the builder later changes the boat with a different model of it......say builds a flybridge from an express SF and then it's a little off and they don't account for it...….it is easy to move battery banks or something like that to account for it.
  18. PacBlue

    PacBlue Senior Member

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    Good to have some feedback on the 570.

    One thing I note is the 390 had v-drives with the fwd engine room fuel tank which shifted the center of gravity back a bit. The 450/510/570/630/670 Ferretti era Bertram’s had the more conventional straight drive configuration with the fwd engine room fuel tank and the results don’t sound too good.
  19. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    I personally know of a dozen boats that had major structural issues between the 57' and 63's and wouldn't touch one. The 57' I was running was new and started oil canning and breaking all of the bulkhead tabbing loose, within the first few months and moderate seas. 3-5' was the biggest I had it out in. 1/2 tank and less it started riding pretty good......was still wet though, just not nearly as often. You get spray on the strataglass once every 10-20 minutes instead of every 3 minutes or less in 3' seas. LOL It was fuel efficient at 90 gph at just over 30 knots if I remember right.
  20. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Ah, Er, oh,,,
    Not sure how to take that if pointed at our 58 MY. Based on the 58 Convertible hull at the same time, She does want to ride bow high at cruise as the convertible. Our fuel and water tanks do differ from the convertible.
    Approx 700 gallons fuel forward of the mains, 550 gallons in the stern, also 240 gallons of water in the stern.
    When loaded at speed, she is not under powered but runs as a fish boat, bow up and needs just a tage of tab to bring it down for a nice ride and micro better mpg (2.5 - 3 gallons per mile).
    While operating, we burn from the forward tank with mains and gen-sets and start tabbing down as the bow gets lighter when we have room and budget to run at speed.
    I think I mentioned in an old thread that I added trim tab area to reduce the braking effect while still raising the stern and how it did help.
    On our long trips we run slow but still all draws from the forward tanks first. Not a clue where "especially with that forward engine room, other wise you will feel like you are plowing" comes from.
    When returning from the islands, Ill ensure the forward tank is low and make water for the aft tanks to help if the inlet (usually) is bad, ensuring the bow is real high and I blow people away with my SF profile coming in Ponce, StAug and StJohns inlets. Not to bad for a 41 year old hull.

    You still need tabs when the wind is blowing or the FLC goes to the beam also.

    Oh, I've been on a Mikelflex before. No big woo....

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