Galeon is a relative newcomer to this continent. However, it has been in business in Europe for over 30-years manufacturing a full range of yachts. Galeon is well known for its innovative use of technology, remarkable ingenuity, choice of fine materials and exceptional fit-and-finish. The general manager of the company is a perfectionist and a lifelong boatbuilder, which pretty much says it all.The company is located in the world-famous Gdansk shipyard, the home of the Solidarity movement led by Lech Walesa, that led to Poland’s freedom. The result is that Gdansk has a large pool of skilled shipwrights.
- Extended flybridge
- Extended swim platform that lowers
- Folding cockpit to salon doors
- Summer kitchen on flybridge
- Innovative storage
- Upper and lower helm stations
- Flexible salon seating
- Wide side decks
- Opening side rails
- Plenty of natural light throughout
|Length Overall||43’ 6'' / 13.25 m|
Acceleration Times & Conditions
|Time to Plane||5.1 sec.|
|0 to 30||14.9 sec.|
|Load||3 persons, 5/6 fuel load, no water, 50 lbs. of gear|
|Climate||76 deg., 66 humid.; wind: 15-20 mph; seas: <1|
2 x 435-hp Volvo Penta D6
2 x 435-hp Volvo Penta D6
Contents of Report
The Galeon 420 Fly is designed, engineered, and built to be a yacht that is highly social with performance characteristics that create confidence in a seaway. Born in the harsh conditions of the Baltic Sea, the 420 Fly is equally at home in calm inshore waters as it is on an offshore transit. The craftsmanship and fit-and-finish complement the overall quality of the construction. Overall, its mission is to create a relaxed, on-water experience to be shared with friends and family.
- Extended Swim Platform. The swim platform can accommodate most tenders and lowers with built-in, automatically deployed steps.
- Flybridge Mini Galley. On the flybridge deck is a port side grill with refrigerator below, opposed by a starboard side sink with storage below.
- Cockpit to Salon Folding Doors. The aft salon bulkhead glass doors neatly fold to create a seamless transition from the cockpit to the salon.
- Flexible Salon Seating. The salon seating converts from a C-shaped bench seating to an L-shaped extended seating into the cockpit, or by flip-flopping the backrest of the aft most section to make an aft facing bench seat. Another option is created by sliding the opposing port side bench seating bases to the center of the salon to create more table seating.
- Hideaway Television. The salon 32” class flat panel television monitor automatically rises and lowers behind the port side bench seating at the touch of a button.
- Forward Deck Sun Pads. The dual forward deck sun pads convert to chaise lounge seating.
- Master Stateroom Skylight and Windows. The large skylight and side windows provides ample natural light into the forward master stateroom.
- Upper and Lower Helm. With the dual helms, the operator can choose the wider vision of the upper helm or the protected environment of the lower helm.
- Quality Materials and Construction. Galeon utilizes a wide range of quality materials in its exacting execution of the 420 Fly.
- Adjustable Transom Seating. The aft bench seating section in the cockpit can adjust forward and aft, giving and taking space where needed.
The Galeon 420 Fly has a length overall of 43’6” (12.25 m), a beam of 13’8” (4.16 m), and a draft of 3’11” (1.19 m). With an empty weight of 26,698 lbs. (12,110 kg), 85% fuel and three people onboard, the estimated test weight was 28,787 lbs. (13,058 kg).
With the twin 435-hp Volvo Penta D6s turning 3490 rpm, the boat reached a top speed of 30 knots (34.5 mph). Best economic cruise came in at 2400 rpm and 16.6 knots. At that speed, the 19.4 gph fuel burn translated into a range of 224 nm, while still holding back a 10% reserve of the boat’s 290-gallon (1,100 L) total fuel capacity.
She was quick to respond to the throttle, coming up on plane in 5.1 seconds, accelerating to 20 mph in 8.7 seconds, and 30 mph came and went in 14.9. The conditions on test day were calm. To demonstrate, her handling chop came down to crossing the photo-boats wake. The 420 Fly offered clean transitions across the wave with no hint of pounding or a wet ride.
When it came time to return to the dock, the 420 Fly is a well-mannered boat, and very responsive to the helm. Backing into this tight slip showed that she’s easy to steer by using the engine’s shifters, bumping the individual engines into reverse as needed. The props will pull her over to the side with the engine in reverse, so be gentle and just use short intervals of going into gear. Once in… use a shot of forward to stop the aft-ward momentum.
The large swim platform extends out 4’3” (1.50 m) from the transom and provides an ideal boarding area when secured on a floating dock. Stairs lead up to the cockpit on the port side.
The America Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) rules call for all boats to have a re-boarding ladder that extends 22” (.56 m) into the water and is retrievable from someone who is in the water. The Galeon 420 Fly’s re-boarding ladder is hidden under a deck hatch on the starboard side that meets the ABYC rules.
The swim platform hydraulically lowers to create a convenient “beach” for swimming or just relaxing in the water. On the port side, stairs are formed as the platform lowers. Galeon designed the stairs to lead up to the remaining fixed area of the platform and then up to the cockpit via the port side steps.
The optional Glendinning Cablemaster keeps the shore-power cable neat and easy to deploy and retrieve when traveling from point to point.
The flexible aft L-shaped bench seating can slide aft-ward to create more space in the cockpit. The forward-facing bench seat flips open to create a sun pad for lounging.
Throughout the 420 Fly is evidence that Galeon understands how real boaters use their boats. In this case, strategically placed fender storage and fairleads are right where the line handler needs them to be to safely handle the lines and fend the boat while docking.
The pull-out shower head is located at the entry of the cockpit, allowing swimmers the opportunity to rinse-off before entering the cockpit. The swim platform lift controls are in clear view of the entire platform, permitting the operator to ensure that the platform is clear and there is nothing obstructing its movement.
There is a natural flow from the cockpit to the salon. With the glass enclosure closed, the salon temperature can be regulated. A wide door provides easy access from the cockpit.
The glass enclosure can be completely opened to let the outside in. Simply open the door and the two remaining panels fold accordion-style, to the port side with the open door leaving the aft end of the salon entirely open to the cockpit.
Galeon created a light and airy salon with upper and lower windows, letting natural light spill in. The lower windows keep the horizon in view even when seated.
The salon also demonstrates the flexibility of the Galeon 420 Fly with adjustable seating throughout the salon. In the normal configuration, there is a C-shaped settee on the starboard side that wraps around a coffee table. On the port side is a double settee that keeps everyone in the conversation.
To further involve the salon with the cockpit, Galeon devised a way to rotate the aft-most section of the starboard settee to form continuous seating that extends into the cockpit. This allows conversations to flow while movement fore and aft is open for easy socializing.
Another example of Galeon’s use of flexible fixtures is the twin cushions and bases of the port side settee. They easily slide forward to allow two more guests to be seated at the table. This configuration easily permits six adults to be seated at the table.
The starboard side seating converts into a berth by lowering the table and incorporating an insert accommodating extra guests.
Visibility is a Requisite for Any Helm. The Galeon 420 Fly offers clear sightlines both for the controls and electronics as well as the outside. The controls, electronics, compass, and switches are in plain sight. The large side windows and aft glass enclosure provides the lower helm with exceptionally panoramic views, making operating from the lower helm comfortable.
Boats of the Galeon 420 Fly class are designed for and often used for longer distance voyaging equating to long hours at the helm. It is essential that the operator remain comfortable. The ability to reposition the helm seat, and the operators situational position, adds to a more relaxed and comfortable journey.
And, having the headroom to stand at the helm with good visibility is a must. Because the shipwrites and designers at Galeon are seaman, they know that.
With the side windows fully lowered and the aft glass enclosure open, the salon becomes a breeze-way that gives the main deck a feeling of a wide-open coupe.
The wide side-decks and well positioned hand and grab rails on the Galeon 420 Fly make moving forward underway feel more secure. It is strongly recommended to always have at least one hand firmly holding onto a secure fixture or hand rail when moving anywhere on a boat that is underway.
The forward sun pads are for those who enjoy exposure to the sun and the lounge position and outboard side grab rails can make it feel secure. However, the backrests obstruct the lower helm’s view. When operating from the upper helm there is no impediment.
The Galeon 420 Fly is available in a three-stateroom galley-up configuration with the galley on the main deck as seen in the drawing above. The test boat was a two-stateroom galley-down version with the galley in an atrium. This eliminates the third stateroom.
Many owners find a third stateroom to be wasted space, with the galley down extra room is gained in the salon where entertaining is essential. With the large side window above and the open atrium-style, allowing light from the windshield to spill in, the galley feels open and airy. A side window in the galley adds a view to the outside.
Large families with young kids, or grandparent with adult children and kids, might prefer the three stateroom version. It certainly beats breaking down the dining table to create a berth.
Having the combination of a convection and a microwave oven makes preparing gourmet meals a real convenience. When working in a galley on a boat as opposed to working in a kitchen in a home, space is more limited, and conservation of movement is more critical. Throughout the galley, Galeon arranged equipment and storage that reflects an essential understanding of how people use a galley in the real world.
Everything in the 420 Fly’s galley is well thought-out and neatly planned.
Headroom. There is 6’6” (1.98 m) of headroom when entering the master stateroom. There is 3’8” (1.12 m) of headroom above the master berth.
In the master stateroom on the 420 Fly is a forward V-berth. Forward V-berths often have small windows and overhead hatches which do not allow the stateroom to have very much natural light. Galeon has provided the 420 Fly with abundent light through large hull side windows and a full length skylight with an opening hatch making the master stateroom brightly lit.
Storage in any master stateroom is essential. Forward V-berths can be limiting with the ever-decreasing beam moving forward. Galeon devised storage in sections below the bedside shelving and utilized space below the centerline berth and forward along the port and starboard sides, and the stateroom’s aft bulkhead.
In the master stateroom, once ensconced in the berth the owners do not have to get out of bed to adjust temperature or ambient lighting. Everything is at hand. We would, however, like to see more electrical outlets for charging mobile devices.
Master Stateroom En Suite Head
Heads are often poorly planned closets that are forced into remaining space when designing a boat. On the Galeon 420 Fly, the master en suite head is comfortably arranged with a separate shower stall. All the fixtures are contemporary.
There is light from side windows one of which is an opening window. A full width mirror over the sink and windows provides an appropriate vantage to check hair and makeup.
The guest stateroom on the Galeon 420 Fly does not feel like an afterthought like it does on many boats of this class. The wide hullside window allows ample natural light and the 6’3” (1.91 m) of headroom allows easy wardrobe changes. By adding an insert between the twin berths, they easily convert into a double berth. The single reading light mounted in the center restricts lighting for only one person to read with.
Galeon ekes out functional storage throughout the guest stateroom. The hanging locker and shelf storage can accommodate a well-planned wardrobe for a week onboard.
Although it is not equipped with a separate shower stall, the guest head is well planned and brightly lit. It does not feel claustrophobic or cramped. The opening hull side window provides fresh air when desired. Also, the fixtures are the same contemporary design as the master. A guest will not feel like second class passengers.
Moving about on a boat underway is often necessary. Galeon provides safety hand rails in appropriate locations. The stairway to the flybridge deck had well placed grab rails to allow passengers to always have at least one hand to have a firm grip on a secure safety rail. We like this arrangement better than a near-vertical ladder.
The flybridge deck is a central social gathering place while underway or in port. The extended flybridge on the Galeon 420 Fly offers comfortable seating well arranged for this mission. Dining al fresco is made simple with a centrally located table and the L-shaped bench seating that runs on the starboard side and along the aft end of the flybridge.
The opposing sink with storage and grill with refrigerator below essentially create a mini galley on the flybridge. This makes entertaining a crowd easy. The host does not have to go up and down two stairways to the galley below.
Galeon provided double wide benches for the helm and companion seating. The benches are not adjustable. Although, there is plenty of room for operating standing up, which many prefer especially when docking, the bulwarks are low, as they seem to be on all European vessels in this class.
The forward sun pad alongside the helm permits more passengers to join the helmsman while underway keeping the operator in the conversation.
The upper helm is essentially a reprise of the lower helm. However, the engine controls are mounted on the dash in lieu of an armrest. The angle of the engine controls take some getting used to and the operator has to release the engine controls to operate the trim tab controls.
Passing under bridges is a necessary impediment to boaters along America’s waterways, and particularly on the rivers and canals of Europe. The Galeon 420 Fly is naturally suited for traveling these waterways. With a foldaway Bimini top and the folding one light and radar mast, many more bridges can be traversed without having to radio the bridge operator for an opening and waiting the prerequisite time it takes for the bridge to be opened.
The machinery space is well organized. However, access and spaces are tight.
With just enough room between the Volvo Penta D6 engines inspections and repairs are problematic but workable.
The batteries are easily accessible, an important detail when they need to be checked or replaced.
Dripless shaft seals have become widespread over the last decade or so. In fact, we rarely see the traditional stuffing box. There are several manufacturers of dripless shaft seals. Most of the designs use a face seal, with flexible bellows attached to the stern tube (or stuffing box collar) that presses a fixed carbon/graphite flange against a rotating stainless-steel rotor which spins with the prop shaft, creating a seal between the rotor and flange. These have become popular because they don't require adjustment after installation, and they continue to keep sea water out even if the drivetrain is out of alignment.
With conventional stuffing tubes, water is required to lubricate the wax infused flax rope packing. The stuffing box must drip when the shaft is turning. Two or three drops per minute are typical. However, often stuffing boxes leak at a much greater rate. This doesn't harm the shaft or the stuffing box, but the spinning shaft will splash this excess flow all over the surrounding machinery space, causing corrosion to occur on everything that gets sprayed. If a stuffing box leaks more than 8 or 10 drops a minute, it needs servicing.
Although the dripless shaft seal has become more popular, they should not be ignored. Regular inspections should be made. The bellows should be replaced every six to eight years and when adjusting, most manufacturers recommend replacing the set screws in lieu of reusing the existing one.
Although the service port on the sound shield is easily accessible, removal of the sound shield for repair or servicing requirements may prove challenging in the tight machinery space.
Options to Consider
- Flybridge Bimini top which is heavily built with 1.5” stainless-steel uprights
- Salon entrance door curtain
- Covers for the upper helm station and flybridge seating
- Windshield shades for front and side windshields
- Bow thruster
- Glendinning Cablemaster with 50’ (15.2 m) of cable and wireless remote
Approximately $700,000 U.S.
The Galeon 420 Fly has a CE rating of B, with 12 people aboard, but that is in party and sightseeing mode. With two couples or a family aboard, i.e. four to six people, we would happily take her to the islands and across the Gulf Stream in reasonable weather.
In fresh to strong wind conditions – 17 knots to 27 knots – the kind of weather most powerboaters try to avoid, we would not hesitate to take her out with the appropriate crew because of her stout build and high-level of construction, but would operate her from the lower helm in such weather. The bulwarks are low on the flying bridge, which are designed for fair weather entertaining, sunning and cruising, not for running in snotty conditions.
We like the conventional straight shaft drive, because it avoids the high initial cost of a pod system, as well as the requirement for annual maintenance. While it is not as fuel-efficient as pods, the money saved for most people will never repay them for the added cost of the pods.
The overhead in the engine room is low, but this is a relatively small boat with a low profile, which is why she looks so sleek. Our experience with tight engine rooms is that once they are gotten used to, they are not so onerous as they first seem. Just make sure all the through-hull valves and sea strainers can be reached. And there are some things that are just better left to a boat yard to fix, anyway.
Two Staterooms or Three? While it may seem as if there is more utility in a three stateroom boat, that is only true if the third stateroom is going to be used. Otherwise, the larger galley and open atrium feel below and more lounging room above is compelling.
With two cabins and two heads below, plus a galley down, this boat is about as roomy as they come in 41’ (12.5 m). Her length on deck (hull length) is actually 38’8” (11.79 m) and her price of $700,000 makes her a good value, in our opinion.
Most important, the Galeon 420 Fly is an honest boat, and one that anyone should be proud to own.