The design spiral for this concept was started when we were contacted by a client who was looking for a 24′ modern version of a Panga. The narrow beam, high bow, and seaworthiness of the these legendary boats were high on his list of requirements, as well as the potential for a tiller-steer setup. As the emails flew back and forth, the boat grew longer, then wider, and then the aesthetic started to take shape. In the end, I would call it a blend of the classic New England bass boat and a Panga with a sweeping sheer, tumblehome aft, narrow beam, deep forefoot, and efficient underbody.
From the start, the Kingfisher 26 was designed around a 110 hp outboard keeping fuel consumption low while cruising in the mid to low 20 knot range. This hull was designed to plane easily, with little to no hole to climb from, while the sharp entry, chine, and flared bow makes quick work of short chop and waves. While many boats will be throttling back to keep their spine intact, the Kingfisher will happily continue at her designed cruising speed.
As you can see in the above pictures, we also decided to design a center console version alongside the tiller steer. By careful placement of equipment, fuel tanks, and furniture, the same hull can be used for both models while keeping the center of gravity and weights the same.
Starting aft, the center console is equipped with a deep motor well and aft casting deck with storage below. The console was carefully designed to fit the necessary equipment in a small footprint to allow plenty of room to maneuver outboard. Forward, there is plenty of room to build a large casting deck or a u-shaped seating area. The foredeck is kept simple with an anchor locker and anchor pulpit for easy retrieval.
The tiller-steer version was made possible by the new technology from the outboard manufacturers offering power assist tiller control for motors up to 250 hp. This setup allows a wide open boat with virtually no clutter to impede fishing. Gear, storage tanks, etc can be added or removed depending on the preferences for that particular trip. The aft seating area was designed to allow the driver to stand or sit without the need of a removable seat. GPS and other equipment can be conveniently mounted on the port side. Amidships, there is a built in storage pod that houses the batteries, accesses the top of the fuel tank, and allows seating for passengers. Athwart-ship bench seating can be folded over the pod for full walk-around ability. Like the center console, a very large casting deck is built forward.
Construction is wood strip planking sheathed with fiberglass in and out. The hull construction will go quickly using our V-bevel method or the more traditional methods, if desired. All of the structural components: including bulkheads, stringers, floors, and the temporary construction frames are cut from Mylar templates or CNC cut files. We can cut all plywood components and ship them anywhere in the US.