When Ernie Audet took delivery of his 67 foot custom Paul Mann sport fishing yacht back in June 2013, he had volunteered the boat as a test site for two new important types of Cat® equipment. Lisa K is powered by two new Tier 3 C32 ACERT® Cat engines, each achieving 1,925 MHP and meeting emissions standards set forth by the EPA. Even more exciting is that Lisa K was the first yacht to be outfitted with Cat Three60 Precision Control, a joystick system that actuates and controls the engines, transmissions, and bow thrusters simultaneously. Since that time, Mr. Audet has been using the Three60 Precision Control system extensively.
In the summertime, Lisa K’s home port is the Wickford Shipyard Marina on Steamboat Avenue in Wickford, Rhode Island. The dock there can accommodate a 67 foot boat, but its orientation presents captains with an interesting challenge: the boats enter an opening and then must pivot and turn once inside the marina. Lisa K’s slip is perpendicular to the opening, and there is only a maximum of eight or ten feet surrounding the boat as she swings around. “Without the Cat Three60 Precision Control,” says Mr. Audet, “docking Lisa K would be a real bear.”
Now, Lisa K is piloted by Captain Michael Deighan, a very experienced captain who has operated boats all over the world. Mr. Audet says he’s quite a captain and has done a fine job. Everyone knows, however, that a tight slip coupled with wind and tide can get the better of even the best captains. This must be why there is usually a crowd of not necessarily well-wishing bystanders observing the comings and goings of Lisa K as she maneuvers in and out of her slip several times per week. Alas, says Mr. Audet, they are “unpleasantly disappointed” when nothing happens. No matter if Captain Mike or Mr. Audet himself is at the helm, Lisa K - with her Cat Three60 Precision Control - can be easily and deftly maneuvered into that slip.
Thanks to the robust hydraulics powering the Three60 Precision Control system, there is a station-keeping feature available called Three60 Hold. Lisa K and crew employ this system most often when deep drop fishing. Captain Mike finds a nice spot, engages Three60 Hold with the push of a button, and according to Mr. Audet, Lisa K stays within a five foot radius of that spot. Because it is powered by hydraulics, Three60 Hold will keep the position as long as there is diesel in the fuel tanks and will not “time out”, unlike some electric motors. Additionally, Mr. Audet says they use Three60 Hold while waiting for bridges. It’s a convenience item that he never knew he needed, but now would be disappointed not to have.
“You can put this in print,” says Mr. Audet emphatically. “If anybody has a boat of any size and doesn’t have Cat Three60 Precision Control, they are really missing something!” He will never build another vessel without it.