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Old 11-17-2015, 02:01 PM   #1
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New HELMSMAN 38 PH on its way

My new Helmsman 38 Pilothouse was loaded on board its transport last week in China and is now en route to its new home on Bainbridge Island, Washington. After semi-customizing the boat with Scott Helker the builder and watching its construction via photos provided from the factory, we can almost smell the sea air as it comes in through the center windshield opening window. We are ready. And excited.
This is our sixth boat, having come to the Helmsman by way of a Catalina 30 sailboat, a 28 foot Bayliner that would take you anywhere but had problems bringing you home, a small Arima runabout and then two Ranger Tugs, a 25SC and a 29. With all of our time traveling and boating, we decided on a smaller house and a larger boat.
The decision to go with the Helmsman was easy once we became familiar with the boat. We were not aware of the Helmsman but then two of our friends own the same boat and we got such rave reviews from them and enjoyed their boats so much, we decided to more carefully look at the Helmsman. The experience of working with Scott on getting this boat has been excellent so far and we are hoping for a long relationship.
Our initial inclinations were to go with a Nordic Tug 38 or an American Tug 395, both excellent boats. We looked at these both very carefully and saw many used Nordics. The Nordics certainly hold their value as used boats and were quite expensive for 10-12 year old boats. The American Tug is an excellent boat but got a bit pricey for us. There has been talk of a larger Ranger Tug but so far, after a few years of talk, there is no boat on the horizon and I think we have outgrown Ranger Tugs and want a more substantial boat.
When we saw the completed Helmsman, however, there was really no comparison in terms of the finish and the value of the boats. The Helmsmans are definitely built by incredible craftsmen who take great pride in the work they do and it shows in the fit and finish and in the quality joinery with the well-matched woods inside the boat. Equally important to us has been the large amount of the inside space that is usable in the 38PH. With no side decks around the salon, the entire beam is available inside so the interior is vast compared to the other boats we looked at. Our friends have had about 20 people on board at the dock with no issues of space. While some might think that having no outside decks is a problem for docking, we don't see that issue. My wife takes a line off the boat from the swim step on arrival and secures the stern and then I had her the line for the bow from the helm door so we haven't used the side deck anyhow. The convenience of two helm doors is not to be underestimated here.
The components of the engine and drive train, the gauges and the controls also met our needs for quality reliable products and the custom electronics for navigation will be installed after arrival in the US. The value for dollar is part of what made our decision.
We plan to spend most of the summer on the boat so we have looked carefully at what we had previously. The Ranger Tug 29 fits a lot of stuff into a small space and a 10' beam but it was not enough space for our 3 week adventure last summer from the Seattle area to the Broughtons, a nearly 700 mile round trip. We hope to do a similar trip this summer but in six or eight weeks instead of three. Our boat will be used throughout the inside waters of the Northwest and may make a run up to Alaska if the spirit moves us.
This will be a new experience for us in another way: speed. In our Ranger Tug 29, we regularly cruised along at about 14-16 knots. In the Helmsman, we are more likely to be in the 7-9 knot range. In preparation for this change, we spent part of last summer just wandering around in our Ranger Tug at 8 knots and found it was actually pretty nice -- we had less worry about logs and deadheads, saw more of the surroundings and had a much more relaxed hold on the helm. We don't think this will be a difficult adjustment.
The boat will be docked about 2 minutes' walk from our front door. So, with a smaller house, the boat then becomes our guest quarters when we have company and an extension of our home at other times.
Now comes the hard part: we have to come up with a name for the boat. I have some I like and my wife has some she likes; it's just that the lists don't quite line up.
In the meantime, I will continue a log on commissioning this new boat and will be happy to answer any questions any may have. I suspect we are all going to be seeing a lot more Helmsmans around.
Any suggestions on breaking in the new boat will be most appreciated. The engine is a Cummins QSB6.7 380HP. I can provide more specs if anyone wishes.
Now then, back to the list of names.

Allan and Yvonne (with Admiral Fergus, the Westie)
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Old 11-17-2015, 02:26 PM   #2
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Welcome aboard! Helmsman boats are indeed a very good value for a new build, and the interior finish work is exceptional. Great looking boat, too. You're going to love it!
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Old 11-17-2015, 02:42 PM   #3
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Allan and Yvonne and Admiral Fergus,

I thought you would enjoy this picture of our dear departed westies taken on our Helmsman 38PH which was traded in for the current boat.
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Old 11-17-2015, 02:48 PM   #4
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Welcome, there is another PH38 member build in process right now, please keep us posted on your process with photos please....Very excited for you...
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Old 11-17-2015, 04:01 PM   #5
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Nice intro, welcome aboard and keep us up to date with lots of pictures.

So, a name has to be your personal choice and I never liked combo family stuff (Sue Marie etc.) but...
Quote:
Allan and Yvonne (with Admiral Fergus, the Westie)
Admiral's Ally has promise.
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Old 11-17-2015, 04:49 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by aginglawyer View Post
While some might think that having no outside decks is a problem for docking, we don't see that issue. My wife takes a line off the boat from the swim step on arrival and secures the stern and then I had her the line for the bow from the helm door so we haven't used the side deck anyhow.

I haven't seen one of these, either live or in pics...

How does your crew get to the bow?

-Chris
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Old 11-17-2015, 04:54 PM   #7
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I haven't seen one of these, either live or in pics...
How does your crew get to the bow?
-Chris
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Old 11-17-2015, 05:13 PM   #8
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I'd be curious as to how long the process takes? Was your boat already in the building process when you signed the deal or did you get involved before construction? And how long will the fitting out process take before you can drive away from the docks? Beautiful boat!
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Old 11-17-2015, 06:18 PM   #9
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I haven't seen one of these, either live or in pics...

How does your crew get to the bow?

-Chris
Out the pilothouse doors? Nice looking boat BTW.
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Old 11-17-2015, 07:47 PM   #10
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Congrats on the new boat!
My recently retired good friend bought a 2011 38 Helmsman last year.
He loves it! He just brought it up to Canada.
Everyone keeps talking about the great value of these boats...... I'm not asking what you paid for your new build, but am curious what an approximate cost is for a new one. My buddy got a great deal on his, but had to ship it from the East coast of Canada.
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Old 11-17-2015, 07:49 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by windmist View Post
Allan and Yvonne and Admiral Fergus,

I thought you would enjoy this picture of our dear departed westies taken on our Helmsman 38PH which was traded in for the current boat.
The world's best, brightest and most affectionate dogs. Our Fergus is now 11 and our favorite child!

Allan
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Old 11-17-2015, 07:53 PM   #12
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There are a couple in production now. Another Ranger Tug owner from near here has just put in an order for a 38 PH and is selling his Ranger Tug 31 with an upper helm. The upper helm on the Helmsman, of course, is a real asset with seating, full instrumentation and a full aft deck for entertaining. We are having full canvas done for it on ours. The Ranger Tugs upper helm is really just a steering station sort of plopped on top of the boat. We expect to spend lots of time on top.
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Old 11-17-2015, 07:57 PM   #13
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The access to the bow is from the pilothouse doors which are both port and starboard. From bow to stern simply requires going inside and back out to the cockpit.
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Old 11-17-2015, 07:58 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Hawgwash View Post
Nice intro, welcome aboard and keep us up to date with lots of pictures.

So, a name has to be your personal choice and I never liked combo family stuff (Sue Marie etc.) but...
Admiral's Ally has promise.
I'll run it by the Chairman of the Board.

Allan
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Old 11-17-2015, 07:59 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Tunajoe View Post
Congrats on the new boat!
My recently retired good friend bought a 2011 38 Helmsman last year.
He loves it! He just brought it up to Canada.
Everyone keeps talking about the great value of these boats...... I'm not asking what you paid for your new build, but am curious what an approximate cost is for a new one. My buddy got a great deal on his, but had to ship it from the East coast of Canada.
Tunajoe, if you go to the second link in my post #7 click on the 38 (or others) you will find new pricing...

The Helmsman Trawlers® 38 Pilothouse is offered at $389,000 USD, including U.S. delivery and prep, and including all the options and features on the “Features and Specs” page.
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Old 11-17-2015, 09:54 PM   #16
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Sincere congrats! Seems like a very nice vessel, beautifully styled. It's really good to hear that the workmanship, fit and finish is observed as quality. Mind if I ask what options you felt the boat needed?
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Old 11-17-2015, 10:07 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawgwash View Post
Tunajoe, if you go to the second link in my post #7 click on the 38 (or others) you will find new pricing...

The Helmsman Trawlers® 38 Pilothouse is offered at $389,000 USD, including U.S. delivery and prep, and including all the options and features on the “Features and Specs” page.
Duh! I should of clicked on the link
Thanks!
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Old 11-18-2015, 07:08 AM   #18
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Duh! I should of clicked on the link
Thanks!
Are you already getting sixfootitis?
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Old 11-18-2015, 07:33 AM   #19
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I see. Thanks. -C
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Old 11-18-2015, 10:31 AM   #20
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Are you already getting sixfootitis?
Ha!
Of course!
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