It always amazes me how some boats stand the test of time and it is edifying to see that some of these are the very outfits I endorsed many years ago as a young salesman. One such veteran is the Grady White 232 and as I had sold my very first one to former Springbok ski racer Rod Delaney, it was gratifying to see first hand exactly why boats of her class just keep on rolling!
This third generation family sportfisher looked very comfortable in her moorings outside Boating World Durban’s marina office where I met the company’s KZN manager Zane Dresner and Nuno Quartin who were accompanying me out to sea.
Grady WhiteFirst impressions really do count and I couldn’t help noticing how this streamlined 23-footer with her 2.8 m beam, complete with cuddy cabin and impressive hardtop, really stood out among the crowd of boats surrounding her on the water. The extended stainless steel bowrail adds to the sleek look of this boat.
Fitted with 2 x 175 4-Stroke Suzuki outboards which are lusty 2867 cc powerhouses, you know that you have amazing “voomah” behind you. These large engines are well suited to this boat as you can easily reach the deep much quicker than you’d think.
Moving forward, a standout feature has to be the 56 square foot cockpit supported by the 27-inches of internal freeboard. Even with the large fighting chair towards the rear there’s plenty of space to move around and up to eight anglers have been known to enjoy fishing together. Personally I feel six would be a better number.
The vital live bait well is found under the co-pilot seat, complete with a 1100 gallon an hour circulating pump to keep the bait fresh and kicking. A 568-litre fuel tank is concealed under the cockpit floor.
The comfortable and adjustable pilot and co-pilot seats give you excellent all-round vision. The really spacious cabin sleeps two people and even comes with a wash basin. This area sports built-in rod racks and a coolbox.
On the front deck is a perspex hatch that opens up allowing good ventilation into the cabin. Built into the hardtop canopy, which gives excellent protection from the sun, are five rodholders.
Seated in the pilot’s chair one is confronted by an impressive array of instruments and fishfinders. These include two rev counters, two powertrim gauges, main and auxillary tank fuel gauges, hour meters, volt meters, switch panel and a strategically mounted Garmin 4010 GPS and fishfinder. The side mount binnacle controls are within easy reach and are very smooth to the touch, making piloting a pure pleasure.
At a flick of the two ignition keys the Suzuki’s purred into life so quietly one had to check the rev counters to see that they were actually working. It was quite a thrill to thrust the throttles open onto a fairly flat sea which we were fortunate to have after weeks of unsettled weather. At full throttle we were doing 6000 rpm which relates to 60 knots and 55 knots at cruising speed of 4000 rpm.
The four-cylinder big block Suzuki power doesn’t get any better than this. Suzuki’s top-of-the-line in-line four cylinders offer the largest displacement and light weight to deliver first rate performance. The massive fuel tank allow travel far out to the deep blue waters to the game fish playground.
Fitted with an Admiral Hi Drive power steering system with a stainless steel five-spoke steering wheel, she manoeuvres perfectly even in tight circles and there was no cavitation at all – nor should there be after three generations of perfecting this boat.
The Grady White is one of the most popular sport fishers to be found in marinas in the United States with her deep V ride and wide beam setting her apart from the competition. She can handle anything you throw at her like a heavyweight – reports of her outstanding performance even in stormy seas are legendary.
The Grady White 232 certainly sets her own standard among sport fishing boats as her history has proven. She is exceptionally well finished and selling at a very fair R410 000 (incl. VAT) and somewhat of a bargain. The motors are 2009 models and are like new.
For further information contact Boating World on (021) 418 0840 or visit www.boatingworld.co.za