The Sensation has been quite a hit for some years now. But her builders, Twin Boats and Trailers, felt she was just missing something. In search of that certain element, they discovered that this craft can be just that much better. The Editor asks the question; does a gearbox maketh the boat?
A firm favourite is back and she’s just as sensational as ever. Sporting an interesting mod in the gearbox department, I went to investigate whether she’s as good as all-new or simply been given a new lease on life. I met up with Twin Boats at the Vaal River.
The Sensation 2400 Deck has always been a winner in the deck layout department; and since this craft is basically the exact same in interior design as when we first reviewed her back in 2009, I don’t want to delve too deep into this – so let’s breeze over the highlights of what you can expect. On board, the necessary comforts have been catered for and then some. All in all, this craft can carry up to 10 passengers. There’s seating in the stern section of the cockpit for four people on the L-shaped lounger – which, if you’d prefer, allows for the backrest to be folded down to allow for a generous sized sun deck.
Entry to the craft from the extended swim platform is gained via the walkthrough on the starboard side. Here, you’ll find a countertop with a basin, a plumbed sink, and a trash receptacle for your convenience. This version has simple cupboard storage below – but if you’re the type of boater who will spend all day on the water, then you’re going to want to keep your drinks cool; for this, the optional fridge is installed to replace the cupboards.
Another great benefit of this craft is the onboard heads, located in front of the co-pilot. The dash swings open to reveal the generously sized unit; our review version didn’t have the toilet installed, so consider it a very welcomed secluded changing area – again, for those that spend as much time on the water as possible. When the walkthrough section isn’t closed off for maximum protection in the cockpit, you are allowed entrance to the bow seating where a cocktail table can be installed.
This is where we get to the important part of the review. Weighing in at 2 000 kg, the Sensation 2400 Deck needs some decent grunt for the exciting performance. For this, the builders rely on the high torque MerCruiser 5.7-litre 300 HP MAG inboard V8 motor. Now, this has always been paired with a Bravo One gearbox which is geared at a ratio of 1.65:1 – which, although providing the craft with a good, solid pull, the builders say they can improve upon the performance just a bit more scintillating.
After investigating their options and being told it wouldn’t be right, Twin Boats coupled the inboard to the Alpha One stern drive which has a ratio of 1.81:1. Gear ratios are a very technical piece of mechanics which a lot of people don’t really understand – but very briefly: the ratio means that the engine RPM is turning over 1.81 times faster than the propeller shaft. Reducing that ratio means that the motor doesn’t have to work as hard and generally means you can swing a bigger prop. Translated, the torque curve of the engine changes to provide power lower down.