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Back Cove 26 (Not in Production)

1 x 260-hp Volvo Penta D4 diesel

Brief Summary

Another Down East tradition from Back Cove Yachts hits the water this year with the introduction of the Back Cove 26. She is designed to cruise at 25 knots and to carry you over 260 miles on a full tank with the standard four-cylinder diesel power plant. How many 26 footers have you seen with a standard bow thruster and optional stern thruster? Tight slips and busy harbors are no problem for this one.

Key Features

  • Large open cockpit with open generous space at the stern for entertaining or fishing
  • Easy lift engine access under forward cockpit
  • Large space at helm for added electronics
  • Bow thruster, dripless shaft seal, zinc saver and diesel power standard
  • Hand varnished American Cherry woodwork in cabin
  • Vee-berth and drop down table/sleeper accommodations
  • Fully enclosed head
  • Galley with refrigerator, microwave and two-burner cooktop

Test Results

700 4.7 4 0.4 13.29 11.55 1196 1040 65
1000 6.2 5.4 0.7 8.86 7.7 797 693 72
1250 8 6.9 1 7.95 6.91 716 622 79
1500 9.3 8.1 1.7 5.64 4.9 507 441 77
1750 10 8.7 3.3 3.06 2.66 276 240 78
2000 12 10.4 4.2 2.88 2.5 259 225 80
2250 15.1 13.1 5.8 2.5 2.26 234 204 82
2500 19.2 16.7 7.3 2.65 2.3 238 207 84
2750 23.3 20.3 7.8 2.99 2.6 269 234 84
3000 27.4 23.8 9.4 2.91 2.53 262 228 86
3250 30.6 26.6 11.4 2.69 2.34 242 211 86
3500 33 28.7 13.7 2.41 2.1 217 189 87


Length Overall 26' 6''
Beam 9' 4''
Dry Weight 8,500 lbs. (full load)
Draft 2' 6''
Deadrise/Transom 14 deg.
Max Headroom 5' 7''
Bridge Clearance N/A
Fuel Capacity 100 gal.
Water Capacity 30 gal.


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Acceleration Times & Conditions

Time to Plane 7.6 sec.
0 to 30 17.2 sec.
Ratio 2.04 : 1
Props 18'' x 26
Load 3 persons, 7/8 fuel, 1/2 water, moderate gear
Climate 85 deg., 65% humid.; wind: calm; seas: flat

Engine Options

Tested Engine 1 x 260-hp Volvo Penta D4 diesel
Std. Power 1 x 200-hp Yanmar diesel
Opt. Power 1 x 240-hp Yanmar diesel
1 x 260-hp Volvo D4


Deck Warranty Extended 1-Year
Engine Warranty Extended Check with Engine Manufacturer
Gelcoat Warranty Extended 5-Year
Hull Warranty Extended 5-Year

Captain's Report

Seaworthy 26 – Lobster Boat Design with Modern Amenities
By Capt. Bob Smith
Test Captain
The Back Cove 26 follows a Down East tradition of boat design that looks beefy and simple topside, yet stunning with her elegance and craftsmanship down below. This boat’s spoon bow lobster boat heritage is sure to bring back memories while creating a few of her own. She carries a slight tumblehome aft in the hull with a reverse transom, deep-vee, and prop pockets.
Easy Access to the Bow
Making your way forward is made easy with molded-in steps up to the side walkways. The integrated handrails, full framed anodized aluminum windshield, and heavy duty stainless steel grabrails give plenty of safe grips going forward to the anchor, or for laying out on the spacious bow area.
Simple and Clean Cockpit
The cockpit is spacious for a 26-footer and allows you to use it for cruising, fishing, or entertaining. Our test boat featured optional corner seats that can be removed to open up the entire area for fishing, if you like. At the helm, twin pedestal seats are positioned well with slide and swivel adjustments and under-seat storage. They both have removable cushions for easy care. The large dash has lots of room for optional electronics. Rocker switches and a 12-volt socket are to the left of the hydraulic tilt wheel as is the Clarion stereo remote. To the right are the bow plane controls and joystick for the bow thruster.
Moving to the stern the 26 features a swim platform with ladder to easily get back on board after a cool dip. There’s also a hot and cold transom shower back here.
Finely-Built and Functional
The moment you step down into this cabin you’ll realize the quality of craftsmanship put into this boat, starting with the hand-varnished American Cherry. Even though the cabin is simple, Back Cove has designed it in such a way that gives this 26-footer a much larger feel. The V-berth dinette sits four comfortably for meals and easily converts with a drop-down table into a double berth for two adults.
The galley is situated to port and features enough counterspace to prepare a snack or quick meal. There’s a stainless steel sink, microwave, stove, and 120V AC/12 VDC fridge just below. The stereo and power distribution panels are located on the bulkhead above the galley.
The head is located to starboard and has a portal for added light and air, vanity and toilet with enough of room to move around and take a quick shower before disembarking.
Power Plant
Getting to the power plant is simple. The deck under the seats lifts up for easy access to the engine and other mechanical systems as well as the sea strainers and shut-offs. Our test model was equipped with the upgrade, a Yanmar 4L HA-STP 240-hp diesel with ZF transmission and Nibral 4-blade prop. She also had a standard SidePower bow thruster for easy maneuvering out of the slip.
Optional Equipment
Our test boat had several of the options available on this model. We had the upgrade 240-hp diesel engine and the anchor/windlass with stainless steel roller up front. Our boat also had the optional cockpit corner seats at the stern and swim platform. This model can be outfitted with a sturdy hardtop on pipes with canvas filler which would make her even more comfortable in the hot summer sun in Florida, or elsewhere.
This Back Cove measures 26’6” length overall and carries a beam width of 9’4”, with a displacement of 8,500 lbs. She has a fuel capacity of 100 gallons and a fresh water capacity of 30 gallons. With a draft requirement of 2’6” she shouldn’t have much of a problem getting close to shore. This 26-footer also features pretty good headroom with 5’7” in the cabin at the bottom of the steps.
Test Results
We tested the new Back Cove 26 on the waters of Casco Bay near Portland, Maine. With 3 people aboard and a 240-hp Volvo D4 electronically controlled diesel, the boat topped out at 33 mph and had a best cruise of 27.4 mph at 3000 rpm, yielding a cruising range of 262 miles (228 nautical miles) with a 10% fuel reserve and a full 100-gallons in the tank. Like most diesel-powered boats, the BC 26 is a bit slow to get moving, but once he's up she accellerates quickly. Handling is light to the touch at speed, and the Volvo has a unique "Emergency Stop" system where you can jam the throttles from full ahead to full astern and the computer will automatically take the engine down then shift into reverse for you so you don't find your gear box under the forward V-berth.
Keep in mind this is a single-screw boat, so I not only recommend using the standard forward bow thruster, but also getting the optional stern thurster. This makes docking and coming alongside MUCH easier than fiddling around with a single-screw boat in reverse (where steering is quite limited at low speeds). She carves turns nicely and easily snaked her way thru the lobster-pot minefield in Casco Bay. And at more than 8,000 pounds, she delivers a very solid ride into big wakes and larger seas.
For a cruiser with Down East style and cruising ability for a day or a weekend, the Back Cove 26 brings you the amenities and the ability to satisfy many of your needs on the water.

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