Ebbtide has never been a national – or a nationally advertised -- brand. However, it has been a successful regional builder, with a cadre of loyal dealers and customers, mostly in the American Midwest. Beyond that, it is one of those companies that has long hidden its candle under a bushel.
Mission of the Ebbtide 2700 Cuddy Bow Rider
The Ebbtide 2700 Cuddy Bow Rider is a member of that new type of bowrider with a small cabin or cuddy. The concept of this new breed – there are four or five others on the market – is to provide lots of seating and also have a place to get out of the weather. Her cozy seating below with a table can also be converted into sleeping accommodations for an adventuresome couple who like to overnight now and then at anchor.
With a bolted-on swim platform extension she has a large launching pad for watersports of all kinds. And her 24-degree deadrise is ready for just about anything rivers and lakes can dish up and still provide a comfortable ride.
Ebbtide’s Strong Suit is its Construction.
It is so proud of it that it is the first thing the builder usually talks about. Its layup regimen includes a layer of
in the keel to protect against puncture from deadheads or stumps. A hand laminated hull with 3 layers of woven roving plus a layer of Kevlar fiber, makes for a strong bottom that Ebbtide says is flex-free.
Foamed Hull Sides.
In addition to the layers of woven roving, glass mat and core mat, Ebbtide also puts in a rather thick layer of closed-cell foam in the hull sides which provides stiffening, strength and sound-deadening properties. As far as foaming the hull sides goes to reduce noise, Ebbtide is an industry leader.
The builder also claims not to use a chopper gun to spray in glass strands and resin, a technique used for years by many companies, but one eschewed by most builders these days because it is heavy and increasingly expensive.
Here is where Ebbtide diverges from growing industry practice. Ebbtide contends that its wood stringer system provides a more comfortable ride than do boats with all-chemical-and-glass stringer systems. It says, "… wood stringers have the flexible memory to absorb shock and vibration, they do not transfer sound, they're heavier and provide a more solid ride, and they take rough seas better."
Ebbtide calls its stringer system Dura-Core and says that an attribute of its process is that its solid Perma-Panel treated wood stringers have a bond that penetrates wood deeper than the surface-only bond of the man-made material.
Is Rot a Problem?
Because Ebbtide (like most other builders) uses a skin coat of vinylester resin, osmosis water migration through the hull is prevented. Further, its wood components are completely encapsulated in polyester resin. To close out the discussion, Ebbtide has a limited lifetime warranty on the hull, stringers and transom.
BoatTEST.com can report that some of the world's best boat builders still use treated marine plywood in its construction and some of the best also have eliminated it. We have not seen any evidence that either method is problematical for consumers in properly constructed stringers or transoms. However, boats with marine ply components are usually heavier, a detail that Ebbtide admits, staying that heavier boats are better riding ones -- a situation we have found to be generally true.
Length and Weight.
The 2700 Cuddy Bow Rider weighs 5,200 lbs. (2,358 kgs.), dry. When we compare this weight with other bowriders on the market with a 27' designation we discover that in fact the Ebbtide is on the light side. One reason for this is that the boat has quite a bit of forward overhang in the bow and certainly more than most boats on the market.
This design gives the boat length and extra room in the bow without much added weight. Her hull length from stem to transom is 26' (7.92 m), and when adding on the swim platform extension, she has a 28'6" (8.68 m) LOA. When we compare her to so-called 25-footers, we find that she is right in the middle. In any case, weight is not an issue with the 2700.
Another aspect of the 2700 hull that certainly makes it better riding is its 24-degree deadrise. There are not many sportboats made for inland lakes that have a 24-degree deadrise, a design was first used for high-performance offshore racing.
The deck plan includes driver and passenger adjustable sliding flip-up bucket seats, and a sundeck with hinged filler cushions in the aft cockpit section. There is a wrap-around bench seat in the bow with a center walkthrough, accessed through the forward cuddy companion door. The 3 sections of the boat are designed to comfortably seat 4 passengers including cuddy seating, which converts to a fairly roomy sleeping area. Under-seat storage is prevalent in all seating sections.
The 2700’s cockpit is deep and safe for children. She has a centerline cockpit depth of 37" (94 cm). She is well appointed with stain-resistant upholstery which has a limited 5-year warranty.
Stern and Helm Design.
From the cockpit, a transom door leads to an extended, swim platform with telescoping ladder off the stern. There’s a standard transom shower. Going forward, there is a standard digital depth finder and GPS, along with custom instrumentation at the helm, deluxe tilt steering and driver/passenger footrests. Both the bow and aft cockpit have snap-in carpet.
The cuddy cabin is accessed from the cockpit down a step and a half through a lockable sliding entry door. The cuddy has a carbon monoxide detector, a Porta-Potti, and sofa seating with sleeper filler cushions. Optional (12V or 110V shore power) air conditioning and a 15’’ (381 mm) flat panel LCD TV add to cabin comfort.
At the Bow.
From the cuddy, a forward door leads to the reasonably roomy bow seating area. There’s bow storage for anchor and rode, and the 2700’s broad 8'6" (2.59 m) beam allows for decent room in the footwell. There is storage under the seats.
Engine Options and Price
Ebbtide makes available sterndrive engines from both Mercury and Volvo Penta from 260-hp to 420-hp. That is quite a wide range and we caution consumers to make sure that they fully understand how the boat will perform with any given engine option before buying. We have not tested this boat, so can give no guidance.
While there are a number of options for this boat, she is fairly well equipped as standard. MSRP pricing starts at $84,720 powered by the 260-hp 5.0 L engine and ranges up to $107,705 for the 8.2 L Mercury HO 320-hp engine.
Trailers are not available from the manufacturer, and are at the option of buyers and dealers.
Cost of Major Options
The cost for optional cabin amenities can be grouped in Ebbtide’s Overnight Package at $5,200, bundling the 15’’ flatscreen LCD TV with DVD player, a microwave, shore power package with power cord and battery charger. The TV and DVD player alone are $620; shore power 110V air conditioning is $4,235 and a 12V AC system is $7,465.
Gelcoat color options for the hull range in price from $940 to slightly over $1,600. Other popular options include a compass at $230 and docking lights at $410. A cockpit canvas cover is priced at $940.
As noted, there are a number of boats on the market with a combination of cuddy and bow seating. However, the Ebbtide 2700 Cuddy Bow Rider is the smallest boat of this growing type. That should be an important consideration for people trying to decide whether or not they want to transition from a true sportboat to a larger cruiser and are looking for a way to put their toe in the water.
Finally, Ebbtide is a family-oriented boat builder and its boats show it. With a deep cockpit, large stern platform, and the cozy cuddy, there is something for every member of the family to like.