Regulator’s new 37 boasts a classically beautiful hull, and it fits neatly into the niche that boat buyers have clamoured for since the 1940s—a hardcore fishing platform that converts easily at day’s end to a comfortable leisure platform. With plenty of seating in an open boat, everyone gets into the action. And yes, there’s a big V-berth in the console cabin (6 feet, 11 inches of headroom), with an enclosed head and shower (7 feet, 6 inches of headroom), and a galley.
Regulator engineering considered customers’ requests for raised freeboard, plentiful storage, abundant air conditioning (with reverse-cycle heat) and a Seakeeper gyrostabiliser, all backed up by a big generator. Also, more refrigeration for food, drink, bait and fish.
Seating at the bow adapts quickly from serious fishing to lounging, sunning, cruising and eating. At the helm, there is a secure three-across helm seat and an aft-facing mezzanine bench for two. There’s a watertight starboard cockpit door and vast tackle storage, with many rod holders in strategic places. Livewells and fish boxes are all insulated, and some fish lockers are refrigerated.
The 37′s design, construction, technology and power allow for a range of 300 miles, conservatively, at speeds of 30 to 40 mph. The two-way average top speed, with a nearly full tank of fuel and two aboard, clocked in at 56.3 mph at 6,000 rpm. Performance at 4,000 to 4,500 rpm impressed me more with the three big 425 hp XTO Offshore outboards pushing the 37 easily at 31 to 40 mph. Acceleration within that speed range proved impressive. The boat slows down to speeds in the 20s if serious seas or a nasty inlet demands it, but the 37 wants to run, and the engines balance this boat well. Tight turns were a breeze, and the hull held firm at speed.
The 37, like all Regulators, runs on a Lou Codega hull design, a non-stepped 24-degree (at the transom) deep-V with carefully positioned strakes and chines. The center of gravity is right over the tanks, so as fuel burns, the boat’s balance doesn’t shift. At cruise, it rides a little bow-proud, presenting that sharp forefoot to oncoming seas. The attitude also gives this hull shape more speed with less horsepower, plus an easy, dry ride. It loves the low-rpm torque from the brawny V-8 power-heads and Yamaha XTO propellers.
The boat has watertight bulkheads under the helm and all deck spaces. Fish boxes drain overboard, so there’s no water there, and no mold or funky smell. Rod storage in the air-conditioned cabin reduces moisture. The cabin is well-lit and vented to keep things dry. All systems are readily accessible. Details extend to parts, such as a nylon discharge valve for the holding tank that doesn’t bind with age.
A digital switching system controls all the Regulator 37′s processes, from the lights and engines to plumbing, the Seakeeper and an Onan 13.5 kW diesel generator. David Clubbs, Regulator’s engineering director, and his team worked directly with Garmin to develop the company’s customised MyHelm system. It controls everything intuitively to make operating a complex vessel simple.
COVID-19 caused slowdowns in process and tooling, but finally, over last fall and winter, the team got to build hull No. 1. They spent many hours working out the mechanical stress details and resulting designs for the Seakeeper foundations. Consider the pressures the boat must endure from three sets of powerful forces acting on it: 1,275 Yamaha horses driving 20,000 pounds forward at 30 mph; water waves that have their own agenda; and a gyro that refuses to allow waves to induce roll. The foundations are infused separately from the hull, reinforced with high-density cores and 1-inch-thick aluminium backing plates, capped on each end by another structural bulkhead that distributes loads into the other longitudinal stringers, hull bottom and hull sides.
Under the mezzanine seat is a pump room that Clubbs calls, “my apartment.” It’s huge, designed to be much drier than the lazarette, a good environment for complex machinery. The apartment offers full access to all three fuel tanks, with manifolds so each engine can pull from any one of them. All valves are accessible.
“We’ve given dealers classes on the whole boat, including MyHelm,” Clubbs says. “We’ve also produced videos on multiple systems, available to dealers and owners, and the full owner’s manual is available on the boat’s Garmin screens.”
“A big addition for 2022 is a tower with a full upper station,” Clubbs continues. “We engineers love to get out from behind our computers to build and run our boats, and evaluate their systems hands-on. We had a lot of fun building the first 37. It’s a super-fun boat, fast, dry, with lots of good stuff on board.”