The Sailfish 320 Express Walk Around is built on the same hull as the proven Sailfish CC but is designed for a different clientele. This model has an emphasis on comfort, cockpit seating, over-nighting, and the kind of sea-keeping capabilities that only a closed bow boat with high windshield can provide. With this optional hardtop and back curtain (available only on the pilothouse version) she becomes a three-season vessel that the whole family can use rain or shine.
VDS Hull Design.
Sailfish utilizes its exclusive VDS (Variable Deadrise Stepped) hull design, and this has served it well in its line of offshore center consoles. VDS is a design theme used across the board with Sailfish hulls and to be clear, the term “step” had more to do with the steps the variable deadrise hull takes as the bottom moves from the keel to the chines, rather than the traditional idea of a "step" that consists of slots in the bottom that draw air in from the sides.
Most deep-V boats have 'warped" hulls, which is to say they have a high deadrise at the bow for efficient wave pearcing -- say, some like 50-degrees to 65-degree deadrise -- then flatten out to, typically, 18-degrees to 24-degrees depending on the brand and application. But the Sailfish 320 Express Walk Around hull has three different warped surfaces on its bottom, all designed for slightly different purposes as they warp back to the transom.
Strong Construction Standards.
Sailfish has a reputation for building boats that are strong. Sailfish refers to its construction standards as SailTech and some of the design parameters that contribute to its methodology are…
- • Long Cure Times. All hulls are kept in the molds for four full days to ensure that they cure in the mold and not on a jig where they are awaiting the next process in the build. By keeping the hull lamination in the mold for four days the builder insures that the hull is properly cured and less likely to have distortions in the surface.
- • Carbon Fiber Reinforced Deck, Kevlar Reinforced Hull. These materials add strength and durability and at the same time reduce weight. Further, Kevlar is a good material to use in the keel because of its puncture-resistance.
- • Added Components are Structural. Many of the added features such as tackle storage and livewells are molded in to become structural components instead of separate pieces added to cut-outs of the mold. This means that the components themselves are adding to the structural integrity of the hull.
- • Choice of Color. While some builders are content to offer its boats in any color one desires, as long as it’s white, Sailfish begs to differ. A total of six color options are available for no extra cost allowing owners to truly personalize their purchase. Four special order colors are available for a reasonable up-charge ($491) and Sailfish will even add a two-tone color scheme ($389).
- • Engine Choices. Sailfish will power the 320 Express Walk Around with outboards from either Yamaha or Mercury.
- • Available in Two Versions. Sailfish offers the 320 Express Walk Around in two versions -- an “Open” and a “Pilothouse” version. The Pilothouse version comes with a hardtop, full windshield and back curtain.
Features Inspection by Function
Sailfish creates fishing boats first and foremost. The 320 Express Walk Around comes well equipped for the task, starting with a 30-gallon (114 L) transom livewell. Its elevated position allows easy access without bending over, the interior is rounded to reduce the shock-effect on the live bait. There are high-speed livewell pick-ups.Pull the bait out and prep it at the prep station with tackle storage just behind the helm seat. This position includes vertical rod holders for rigging the gear. Additional tackle storage is behind the port seat. There are no less than 14 rod holders throughout the 320 Express and trolling is made easy with 8 rod holders across the top of the transom alone, allowing for an impressive spread to be presented to the stern of the boat. Holders for downrigger weights are under the gunwales. The catch can be iced and stored in two in-deck fishboxes in the cockpit. The 30-gallon livewell has a freshwater washdown right alongside. Rod holders allow convenient baiting of hooks right at the transom. Dual rigging stations keep the supplies well organized and always close at hand. Notice the lure tubes and tool holder on the back of the port door. The step hatch on the center line opens to a mechanical compartment that can house the optional generator.
A freshwater sink with pullout sprayer is at the top of the starboard rigging station. Dual in-deck fishboxes can be used to store the catch of the day. This shot shows the optional cooler seat ($1,020) at the transom. Note the large port and starboard dual scuppers in the stern quarters. Rod racks are under the gunwales.The deck is reinforced with carbon fiber so we would have no hesitation about adding a fighting chair thru-bolted to a metal plate on the underside of the deck. At the end of the day, rods can be stored in the under gunwale rod lockers.
The helm deck has an attractive lounger to port that is transformable to aft facing seating to watch either the rods set to troll or the kids at the end of the towline. Just ahead is a large storage area for putting glasses, sunscreen, cellphones….etc and it’s covered to protect the contents from the elements. A compartmentalized storage bin is just ahead of the port side lounger.
Open or Hardtop.
The 320 Express Walk Around comes standard with an open configuration. Of course it would be a rare customer indeed that chose to not add protection to the main operational station, and as such an optional Pilothouse package is offered ($8,381) which includes the hardtop, a hard-frame windshield, defroster and wipers and back drop curtains. With this setup, Sailfish has eliminated the necessity of having to add see-through isinglass curtains to the tops of the windshields. The hardtop can be fully enclosed as well. We would also opt for the defroster as windows always have a tendency to fog up on rainy days. The hardtop has two opening overhead hatches, six LED lights and two cargo-net life jacket storage units. Opening side windows allow air to be scooped into the helm deck. Spreader lights illuminate the cockpit deck.
With plenty of open space, the cockpit lends itself not only to fishing but as a wide-open gathering area. Add a couple of deck chairs for relaxing in the sun. Optional seating across the transom is offered. Choose from either the 58” (147 cm) wide folding bench seat ($1,431) or the aft cooler seat ($1,020) to add to the social atmosphere. Most important for a family offshore boat is the depth of the cockpit. At the helm area the cockpit is 40" (1.01 m) deep, and it is 31" (78 cm) deep at the transom. The family-friendly optional, 58" (146 cm) wide built-in, fold-away transom seat ($1,431) can be seen here on a 320 Express Walk Around.
Making a boat that is as family cruise friendly as it is fish friendly requires the ability to spend nights onboard. Certainly with fishermen, those overnights will likely be spent offshore at the Canyons, far removed from shore power. Sailfish therefore offers an overnight package ($19,809) that includes a 5kW gas generator for the electrical needs and air conditioning for climate control. The generator can be ordered without the air conditioning ($16,139), if desired. The generator is easily accessible for maintenance by lifting a hatch at the aft end of the cockpit deck.
The galley is to the port side and equipped with the usual appliances such as a refrigerator, stove and microwave. Wood trim surrounds the solid surface counter and storage. Forward is V-seating wrapping around a table. Natural light comes in from three opening portlights and a large overhead hatch.
Dry storage is under both of the forward seats. The seat backs flip up to serve as Pullman berths.
When it’s time to turn in, the forward seating allows the table to drop down and cushions from the seat backs lift up to form “Pullman” berths. This allows four to sleep in this area alone. Yet another can be accommodated in the mid-berth just under the cockpit deck. Room for four to sleep comfortably is easily created from the forward seating and fold down bunks.The mid berth accommodates another person and there are rod storage hangers here as well. A sink is recessed into a solid surface counter with a single-burner stove alongside. The microwave is above, refrigerator is below.
As we would expect in this size of boat, Sailfish went with an enclosed “wet-head” with more of the solid surface counter work. The sink has a pullout sprayer that doubles as a showerhead. An opening portlight provides ventilation. It is located to starboard.
Sailfish created a well thought-out helm in regard to ergonomics. We’ve seen this as being a consistent factor with Sailfish boats and it’s thankfully repeated on the 320 Express Walk Around. Rocker switches are on a panel to the left side of the helm and all are chromed and lighted at the top half. Sailfish included two drink holders, which is not only convenient for two people occupying the helm position but ultimately one drink holder gets used for holding anything but drinks. Battery switches and filters are in a compartment in the transom. The engine displays are just above the stainless wheel with its steering knob and this allows good visibility while not hampering on the available real estate of the panel itself. Engine controls are mounted to a nearly 45-degree angle.
Sailfish utilizes Garmin as its strategic partner for the electronics layouts and offers 12" (30.5 cm) packages in the form of the 6212 chartplotter ($9,426), the 7212 ($11,144) with its touchscreen capability, and the 7215 with radar and fishfinder ($14,473), requires thru-hull transducer ($1,387). Power assist steering is offered ($2,489), except when the twin 300s are selected they come standard and it should go a long way towards reducing operator fatigue on the long offshore runs. The ship's main electrical panel is just behind the galley down below.
Bow and Side Decks
Getting to the bow is a non-issue thanks to the molded steps to either side of the cockpit deck. These lead to wide side decks, well protected with high rails -- thus the "walk around" fishing feature is preserved. Fully forward the decks are treated with non-skid from Sailfish’s unique raised dot pattern that is molded in.
The ground tackle
is handled from a standard windlass mounted to the top of the foredeck and the anchor rests in a roller extending from the bow. A hatch to the side allows access under the deck to manage tangles and access the rode. The builder recently announced that a through-the-stem anchor system with windlass and ss scuff plate is available as an option.
Here we see the 4-step, telescoping ladder on the 320 CC which is the same on the 320 Express Walk Around.
Power Choices and Pricing
Sailfish will power the 320 Express Walk Around with engines from either Yamaha or Mercury. Specifically, choose between twin 250s or twin 300s. The 320 Express Walk Around powered with Yamaha’s F250UCAs carries an MSRP of $217,780, and F300UCA’s will be $223,358. As for Mercury, a pair of twin 250 XXLs will generate an MSRP of $217,080 and the 300XXLs will bring it to $220,397. Fully loaded the 320 Express Walk Around will fetch an MSRP of roughly $276k.
We are impressed by the Sailfish 320 Express Walk Around for a number of reasons. First, the builder is quite involved with the more esoteric aspects of hull construction as attested to by the boat's all-composite transom, carbon fiber deck and Kevlar laminated in the hull, among many other things. Her four-day in-mold laminate cure and her flush mounted hinges and deck plates are important clues as to Sailfish's quality-oriented mentality. These important details together with her Carolina flare, high freeboard, and the express design make the 320 Express Walk Around a good sea-keeping boat. Further, all of the equipment and components we were able to see were top of the line.Secondly, we like her design. Typically, a traditional walk-around design has sunken side decks that are easy to step up to from the cockpit when fighting a belligerent fish, but they make the cabin small and cramped. This is not a good compromise in our book. Sailfish has created easy steps up to the wide, flush side decks. With the high rails, walking forward is virtually as secure. And there is much more room below. Thirdly, for those who haven't noticed, the 320 Express Walk Around's pricing is quite competitive. Boaters looking for a larger offshore express fishboat and who find the prices of the best brand names in the field challenging, may find that Sailfish offers a compelling alternative.
Standard and Optional Features
|Washdown: Raw Water||Standard|
|Outlet: 12-Volt Acc||Standard|
Boats More Than 30 Feet
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