I gotta admit sometimes owning RDP has its privileges and this last Sunday was no exception being that we got to demo the American Offshore 28' Deck Boat! I have to say we were very impressed! Factoring in the price point and I'm sure it will leave a few of the members scratching their heads as to why one isn't parked in their garage already!
Now this is a typical "RDP" style article, meaning that if we are going to demo a boat then we are going to load it up with the fam bam and actually "demo" the boat as we would use it for our own use or in this case the . The program started with Ricky showing up at my house with the boat in tow, and the family going outside and giving it the "ooohh's and aaaahh's for a few minutes, while we finished loading up the boat. Being that this is a new boat there is virtually nothing in it, so I brought all the typical stuff you would need for a day on the water : Ropes, Fenders, 36 pack Igloo cooler, towels, baby supplies etc.. The crew was to be Tom (Tommygun Images), My entire family (Stacy, 2 Toddlers, and 1 infant), and Ricky and Kelli.
I have seen this boat before as it was part of our RDP tests, but in an effort to not show "bias" towards any of the manufacturers at the tests I myself didn't go out and drive any of them (or I would've had to go out and drive all of them). I took a few cell phone pics in front of the house. The boat sits on a triple axle trailer built by Extreme Trailers. Trailer sported LED's all the way around, recessed (with the caskets) slim lines on the rear, and two of the axles had disc brakes. Pretty standard trailer with a few nice little upgrades, but still affordable.
So now begins the story of our day. We launched the boat at Windsor and idled out a bit while Stacy and I were getting the kids situated.
As soon as we got the kids prepped for the ride (sunglasses on, baby stuffed stowed etc..) I drove us down to 3 Dunes on the south end of the lake.
The first thing I noticed about the AO is it is RIGID. Most deckboats have a lot of "flex" to them when you are crossing big rollers. It's often referred to as "helm movement" in articles in the past. I'm not sure how Cliff had this laid up, but the boat is rock solid. A common trait of this style deck boat as well is generally when you run them through decent water there's some amount of "spray" that will come up through the front of the tunnel. Cliff modified the front of the mold so that the walk off in the front is actually part of the boat, and he wisely didn't put any slots in it. This in my opinion solved that problem that this boat (and others like it) used to have. (FYI American Offshore claims to be the first company to integrate this platform into the mold, as opposed to the old plastic bolt on pieces that everybody used to do)
While the boat may share some similarities from a distance to a lot of the other deck boats that came on scene over the years, they did quite a bit to streamline the top of the boat and make it a very well functioning overall package. To talk briefly about some of the changes they did quite a bit of work to the transom of the boat. They lowered the swimstep down to the waterline, and inversely raised the bottom portion of the step so that you can get a more aggressive (and correct) X-Dimension for higher Horsepower applications. When they did that it actually (by the nature of the toolign) provided two areas on the edge of the swimstep where you can grab the boat and easily pull it off a sandbar after it has been beached for a day. The reconfigured the steps in the back to make them more aesthetically pleasing, and reclined the rear bench seat a little to make it a whole lot more comfortable. They reconfigured the dash and integrated the offshore controls into the helm so there isn't a "side pod" that is in the way and limits interior room. There's a bunch of other little things, but those are the main things that I noticed when we were out in the boat for the day.
So I'm going to wrap this up here pretty quick. When we got to Three Dunes everyone was extremely impressed with the boat. All of us have been in quite a few boats over the years, and generally speaking a boat with a lower price point and the word impressed don't generally go hand in hand. This boat had very little rattling from the lockers (usually a problem with decks), it was rock solid, was docile to drive, and most importantly everybody had a blast riding down in it and hanging out on it for the day!
You can't deny the smiles on everyone's faces.
Riding down to 3 Dunes
Sierra and Ricky enjoying the love seat
Summer fell asleep on the ride
She liked the boat when she woke up.
Kids jumping off the back of the boat in the cove.
Enjoying the day
Enjoying the ride home
This boat as it sits fully loaded with Livorsi Gauges, Offshore zero effort controls, Dual batteries in billet battery boxes, dual hatch rams, 8' or 10' bimini, stereo, interior lighting, LED lighted cup holders, stereo, triple axle trailer, basically as it sits
LIST PRICE IS 109,000!! Call Maxed out Marine to discuss details and schedule your demo! 928-854-3060