2004-2006 Mainship 34' Flybridge Cruising Speed

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Veteran Member
Nov 15, 2016
Vessel Name
Cleo's Barge
Vessel Make
2006 Mainship 34T
Hi all,

Been looking on the Internet at 34' 2004-2006 Mainship trawlers. These have the single Yanmar 370HP diesels. I'm drawn to this boat because of the wide beam roominess of the boat- and the fact that it is a single engine.

I'm trying to ascertain the "high end" cruising speed for these boats. (At my age, constant cruising at 7-8 knots is not desired). Several of the ads show high cruising speed for this boat anywhere from 11 to 14 knots. I would be desiring to go 11-14 knots continuous.

Are my expectations too high for this boat? (I have never even been on this boat- just started looking). (Currently own a 27' 2012 Ranger tug).

Last year, I looked at a couple of Mainship 34' Pilots. While the cruising speed was faster, the noise level of an engine inside the salon was totally unacceptable. (While driving, I had to shout to the owner in the co-pilot seat).

Input from owners of this boat would really be appreciated.

Ward B.
Mainship Trawler Speed

We own a 2004 Mainship Trawler, we cruise at 8-9 MPH. It will cruise at 10-11 but the fuel burn increases, that is running at 70-75 percent power. A great boat we love it.

Mainship 34T speed

We have an '09 34T with a 380hp Yanmar...at 2,900 rpm (65% load reading) we do 10KTS and average 10Gal/hr...if you push though on to a plane you need to run at 3,125 rpm ...its 12kts and 85% on the load reading...way harder than I would ever run the boat/engine so never tried long enough to see the fuel burn.

Love the boat...we've put 500hrs on it in 12 months.


Well, since I owned a 34T several years ago and now own a Pilot 34, both with Yanmar 370 hp engines, I think I can answer your question.

The 34T would cruise at 12 kts and 2,900 rpm when fuel was light. At full fuel, gear and two people, it probably made 11 kts at that rpm. We put 600 hours on her over a 4 year period and probably ran 70% of the time at 7 kts and 1,700 rpm and only 25% at 11-12 kts. Fuel burn was about triple at the high cruise vs 7 kts.

It was certainly quieter than the Pilot 34, but not really comparable as we ran the 34T from the flybridge on all but one trip to Catalina Island in 6-7 foot seas where the rolling was better below. But I am sure that comparing running down below on both boats the 34T was definitely quieter. The sealed off engine room helps.

The boat doesn't really plane, but I would not run at 10 kts. Load and fuel burn will be high at that speed. You need to be at 11+ kts for it to smooth out a bit. That is why we had two speeds- slow cruise at 7 kts or fast cruise at 11-12.

I liked the 34T a lot. It is a perfect couples boat with a decent queen berth forward, galley down and a huge salon and flybridge.

We only switched to the Pilot 34 when we moved from SoCal to New England where the flybridge was less useful.

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Agree with speeds / rpm's David listed above.
As we are the hardtop version we run from "below" all the time and find the noise level very acceptable - easy conversation inside.
I took some noise level readings at various rpm's but they are on the boat under winter wrap.
Also - engine rm access & room around the single Yan engine is a real pleasure...
I've sea trialed several Mainships, various models and power packages. What I found on most was excellent running under hull speed, but rather poor above that. Hull shape and big keel make for lots of drag, needing lots of hp to go. And it seemed like something was holding it back. And then the prop noise at speed was horrible. Prop noise is pretty common on full keel singles, so no surprise there. But in cockpit and salon it was LOUD. From the flybridge, should be ok.

In comparison, a Bruno 35 Downeaster with 300hp would cruise nicely at 16kts at 75% power. Mainship 34 with 370hp tops out around 14-15kts. Hull shape does not like speed. Or maybe it is just heavy.
Thank you for the response. But, it raised an entirely new question:

I've never seen a Mainship HT like yours. What year is it? Where is the engine located - in cockpit or salon?

Noise level while running?

Ward B.
The Mainship 34T hardtop is just a fly bridge model with no fly bridge. Otherwise it is the same. Engine is located under salon but there are no floor penetrations, so noise is less.

Ski- I think you are right that Mainships are heavy compared to bespoke downeasters. My Pilot 34 is rated by the factory at 15,000 lbs dry but with fluids, gear and people it is more like 18,000 lbs. The Bruno will be at 15,000 lbs similarly loaded.

I think that there are a couple of differences in the build between the two boats: The Bruno is custom layed up with attention to weight. Look at the reported weight of the MJMs which is even less. Those are totally vacuum bagged and balsa cored moldings. Also the Bruno may be a thin fiberglass skin over a plywood cabin top whereas the Mainship is molded, albeit cored. The Mainship's cabin is several feet longer than most downeasters because you don't need the cockpit room for lobstering or carrying traps. And finally the Mainship is fully finished inside with a thin fiberglass head liner and main cabin panels. Many downeasters are bare fiberglass and lobsterboats often have no galley.

And finally for those bespoke downeaster owners who pooh pooh the Pilot 30 and 34 as not being built as well as true downeasters, look at this downeaster windshield that was blown out coming in Oregon inlet. See the plywood frame that was lightly tabbed to the cabin top that let loose. The Pilots wouldn't do this.

Sorry to digress a bit.



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2004-2006 Mainship 34Flybridge Cruising speed

Thank you all for the responses.

They still leave me perplexed about all the postings on Yachtword
for the same model boat:

2005 cruise 14mph (12 knots)
2005 cruise 16mph (13.9 knots)
2005 cruise 15-16knots (perhaps the broker meant MPH on listing)
2004 cruise 12mph (10 knots
2006 cruise 8 knots (max 13)

A Bruno 35 was mentioned as an alternative. Looked them up. Fishing boats not as well appointed as the Mainship 34.

I truly do like the looks of the Mainship 34 and especially the roominess inside. All other boats of this length seem to have a 12' beam. (I also owned a Regal 3780 with a 12' beam and it was just fine- but it had 2 370HP Cummins engines and the fuel bill was high and maintenance costs for 2 engines were really expensive.

So, we downsized to a 2012 Ranger Tug. This boat has every amenity you could ask for including solar, bow and stern thrusters, gen, AC, oven, radiator heat and a 180 HP engine that burns 7GPH at 14 knots. so, life was good as we began using it for day trips. Then our first overnighter---- no room in the cabin to move around each other and the only seats on both sides of a table that required one of us to sit in captain's chair to watch a movie on the TV that comes down in front of the bow windows.

Sorry, I know I'm venting. I'm just looking for a 32'-36' boat, single engine (that's in the cockpit), minimal engine noise in the salon while underway, with/or without a flybridge, lower helm steerage, with all the amenities of a trawler,a beam of 10-14', and cruising speed of at least 12-13 knots. Is the Mainship 34' that boat?

Ward B.
With a couple of amendments, yes the 34T is your boat:

Engine in cockpit- Well there are very few trawlers with the engine under the cockpit. That would require an outdrive like the MJM 34 or a v-drive. I suspect that you can't afford an MJM. But the 34T is one of few trawlers with no cabin floor penetrations. All engine room access is through the cockpit underneath the flip up stairs.

Cruising speed- If you want to push the single Yanmer 370 to 3,000 rpm, it will do 12+ kts with full fluids, people and gear, but that is on the edge of over working it. The 34T with twin Yanmar 240s can easily do 13 kts and twin engine access with the 14' beam isn't bad. So if you have to go that fast, consider the twin engine version.

And finally I don't know of any single engine production flybridge trawler that will do 13 kts without overloading it. Well maybe the Benneteau Swift Trawler 34. Its dry weight is reported at 4,000 lbs less than the Mainship and the engine is a 425 hp Cummins. But they cost $100K more.

BTW, don't pay any attention to Yachtworld posted speeds and even be careful about what we tell you here. All boat owners stretch the truth, just like fishermen ;-).

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You can trust me when I say you can trust what David and Don have told you about the 34T. :socool: They're right on the money.

My experience with the single 370 HP Yanmar is that it'll run at 12 knots but doing so requires running at 3000 RPM. Max continuous for that engine is 3100, and 3K is just too close to that for my comfort. Yes, we've run at 3K all day when we needed to get home for an emergency but we don't make it a routine.

There is a hump between about 9 and 12 knots. She'll run at 9 comfortably, and you can push her to 12, but there is no advantage to trying to run in-between.

Here are the numbers Mainship published for the boat:


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I have a 2005 34T 370hp. I don't know what 'cruise speed' means, and I don't know what age has to do with "constant cruising at 7-8 knots". My boat moves at 7mph with minimal wake at 1300 rpm at almost 4mpg and very quietly. Between 8 and 12 mph, she transitions to a significantly 'uphill' profile and fuel economy drops in proportion. At about 14mph and 2600 rpm, full trim tabs will bring the bow down some, 14gph, and she makes a 3' rolling wake that will overturn a kayak at 150'. You will not carry a casual conversation in the salon at that rpm, but the flybridge is OK. WOT is 3200 rpm at 18mph, and neither the boat nor I am comfortable at that speed in anything but absolutely flat water.
we have a 390 (they were replaced by the 34T and the 400T) they are very similar boats with the same engine. We usually run at 1950 rpm's and that gives us 8 kts.; 2500 rpm's will give 10 kts but almost doubles the fuel burn. The boat runs well at those speeds. I would not run faster than that. If you need a boat to run at your speeds look at something with a narrower beam. The 34T has a 14' beam the same power with a 12-13' beam will give you the speed you're looking for.
Noise can be addressed on any boat, often for a reasonable cost. If you find a boat that fits most of your needs except noise, consider spending a few dollars for noise reduction treatments, especially if the price is right

There is a hump between about 9 and 12 knots. She'll run at 9 comfortably, and you can push her to 12, but there is no advantage to trying to run in-between.

Here are the numbers Mainship published for the boat:

The hump Dave mentioned is real. We usually run around 8-9 mph which is 1600 - 1800 rpm. We do push it to 12-13 mph which for us is 2600-2800 rpm but that is only occasionally when Wx or sched dictates. I must admit I was in your position when looking ans deciding and wanted the ability to go a little faster than most trawlers. Since owning the MS we have gotten much more comfortable in the slow lane.
The "Bacchus" link in my signature has more info & pics of our '08 34 HT.
Availability of the HT's on the market varies...when I was looking in 2012 there were 6-8 for sale on the east coast...I went all the way to TX to get a fresh water boat w low hrs and a motivated seller.
IMHO....It is a great 6-4-2 person boat for the $. 6 for cocktails...4 for dinner...sleeps 2 very comfortably.
2004-2006 34' Mainship flybridge

Hi all,

Thank you so very much for all that responded to my "need for speed" on the 34'.

You've given me a lot to think about and I really, REALLY appreciate the time each of you took to let me know your experiences.

Two quick responses to posts:

You are absolutely correct about the Bennateau Fast trawler. While it would meet our needs exactly, there's no way our fixed retirement income would allow for such a purchase. Makes you wonder though, if Benateau can make a truly fast trawler, why not Mainship?

To the person who responding about finding a similar boat with a narrower beam than the 34T, I'm all ears if you have something in mind. I've been looking at websites almost daily since early fall and have found nothing comparable to the 2004 - 2006 34T.

Again- thank you all so very much.

Ward B.
You might just consider the 400T with twin engines, which is what we have. While not a burner by any means, the 400 is a different hull shape than the 34T or the 390. 2800 RPM in our boat, with tabs down and a pretty heavy load (including out 11' dinghy and 20hp 4 stroke on the stern platform) we get between 13.5 and 16 knots, depending on sea state. At that speed I burn right at 13 GPH, sometimes more, sometimes less, again depending on sea state.

If you go with a single you're going to give up some top end speed, it's just the way it works.

Also, like the 34T, the 400 has some nice build and features upgrades over the 390, notably better hatches, full overhangs over the side decks, some upgraded systems and a little better build quality overall.

You can find 400's for under $200,000 if you take your time and look. Ours is a 2005 which we bought in 2013 with 300 hours on the engine and 140 on the genset. The mattresses were still wrapped in plastic and the oven racks were still in cardboard. They were asking $220,000 we paid $170,000.
How can the Beneteau Swift Trawler 34 go faster than a Mainship 34T? Simple- less weight and more power.

While I don't believe the figures entirely, Beneteau lists their 34 at 16,000 lbs and Mainship lists theirs at 20,000. Part of that weight difference is due to almost 1' less beam on the Beneteau.

Also the Cummins 425 hp engine that Beneteau offers in their 34 has more displacement than the Yanmar 370 and is a more robust engine. I would be ok cruising the Cummins at 275 hp, but only 225 hp on the Yanmar.

So maybe 2,000 lbs real world less weight and 50 more hp makes up the difference in cruising speed.


I bought a 34 MS hardtop trawler last fall. The boat cruises at 10 knts very comfortable with a reasonable fuel consumption around 6 gal per hr. At 8knts I am burning around 5 gph. This is based on a single 370 yanmar with 1000 hrs. The boat is very comfortable for my wife and I and it has plenty of storage and accommodation for 2. We spend a lot of time in Newport R I which is about a 45 min run for us. I would definitely look into this style. There is a lot of boat for the money.

Good luck in your search and tight lines.
Island Run
look at Psychosnail Boating for good discussion of hull speed vs power, both for displacement hulls and semi displacement hulls.
Generally the bigger the waves you make, the more power you are using
The Beneteau has a much narrower beam than Mainship. Somewhere around 12' as opposed to 14' 3". that's where the speed comes from. Less weight and less drag at the cost of internal space.
2004-2006 Mainship Cruising speed

Hi all,

Thanks to all of you for the responses to my post. Just wanted to let you know we settled on a 2006 Mainship 34T this morning.

Guess I will just need to go a little slower!

Ward B.

PS. Boat did not come with the 2 matching "bar" stools that most of these have. Anyone have 2 you'd like to part with?
Congratulations on your new (to you) Mainship. You will be very happy with her.

You probably don't really want those stools. I found them uncomfortable and impractical; gave them away.
Congrats....we got rid of the stools on day two!

You probably don't really want those stools. I found them uncomfortable and impractical; gave them away.
Agree but if you are determined I think there was a MS owner on the Yahoo MS forum that was getting rid of a couple.
I was just in Bed Bath Beyond and they had an adjustable gr8 stool w foot & back rest & large base that felt comfy.
Bent plywood w vinyl seat/back
Hi All,

Several months ago, I purchased a 2006 Manship 34T from a seller only about 10 miles away. Boat is beautiful and only has 400+ hours.

Recently had a Side Power stern thruster c100 injstalled. (Most expensive thruster install!!! But, it works great. (Needed a stern thruster to control stern in winds as my Mainship is on a boat lift at our home).

Love the boat. Run it at 2800 rpm and do 12 knots.

Only problem so far is the fuel gauge- top and bottom stations. Sight gauge shows about 1/3 tank of fuel but gauges indicate almost full. Believe it to be the sending unit- but getting to it looks like I will have to pull up the carpet and cut an access hole.

Anyone have this problem?

Ward B.
Anyone else looking for a 34T Mainship 2004, our is for sale. My health is going down hill and it is time to let the boat go, I have listed it with Curtis Stokes brokerage. The boat still looks new, is equipped with bow and stern thrusters and a new dingy with a 4 stroke outboard. It is priced below the market and we will take offers, I need it gone. Located fresh water under cover Tennessee River, Goose Pond Marina, Scottsboro, Al. for more info Cell # 850 896 6328. Ray
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