We recently purchased at 2520 XLD as our first boat. I have to say that we are thrilled Yarmouth Boat Yard introduced us to Parker, and both my fiancee and I knew that was the right boat from the moment we stepped onto it. The simplicity of the boat along with the quality and solidness really stood out compared to all of the brands and types we considered. It's a boat we can grow into and feel confident it'll handle Maine's coastal waters well. The values expressed by the Parker family are apparent in our boat's design and we couldn't be more happy with our choice.
The values expressed by the Parker family are apparent in our boat's design and we couldn't be more happy with our choice.
One Fine Boat
Chuckatuck Creek, VAI own an Parker 18 with a 115 hp mariner. I first started looking at Parkers because it seemed as if everyone in my local area had one. A lot of commercial guys were running Parkers and they had a good solid, no-nonsense look about them. The next thing I noticed was that as many of them as you saw on the water, there were very few used boats for sale. I bought the first used 18 footer than I saw for sale and it has turned out to be an absolute peach. I think the guy that sold it to me is still sick over parting with it. As far as the toughness of the boat is concerned, the following event has become one of those stories that comes up every time the participants are together: During the summer 2 years ago, a number of couples were staying the weekend at one of the old cottages or clubhouses situated on pilings in the middle of Nansemond River. Dockage at this particular cottage is limited to a couple of pilings placed about 15’ from the building on each side (there is a porch on 3 sides), and with the crowd present I was forced to tie the boat to one of the porch columns and put out about 120’ of anchor line (well set) straight out from the building. About dinner time as we enjoyed a fine feast of steamed crabs and fried flounder, we were hit by the nastiest thunderstorm you ever want to see. I think it was a micro-burst, as many trees on shore were uprooted, the roof shingles were blowing off and hitting the water like machine gun bullets, and the metal porch furniture that had sat on that porch for many years left for points south. Wind gusts had to be around 80+ mph. Well, needless to say my anchor dragged, and my boat started to pound the side of the building with such gusto that I knew she was going to the bottom. If it didn’t sink, it would certainly sustain major damage. After deciding at this point the boat was going to be a total loss (hey, that’s what insurance is for!), my concern then shifted to the safety of the building itself. Every time the boat slammed broadside into the protruding ends of the porch beams, the entire building lurched sideways a foot or more. The building was struck by lightning, and we lost power. After the storm was over, the boat was still floating and virtually undamaged. I replaced the gas tank vent and buffed out he majority of the minor gelcoat scratches, those few that remain would have to be pointed out. Whenever this story comes up, I always hear things like “That is one tough boat” or “My boat would not have stood up to that” Bottom line is, Parker makes for one fine boat!
Very Well ConstructedBack in the 70’s I bought at 19’ Mako CC because I thought then it was the best center console for fishing available. It was a good boat. Because of a career situation (lots of grads school) I sold it and did not have a boat for a while. Charter fished a lot. In 1989, I was ready to get back in boating and tried to go cheap and bought a disaster of a 18’ flat bottom fiberglass skiff. It was twisted and ran like a crab. When going over a wake at speed it threw me to the floor twice. The second time my wife was along and was also thrown to the floor of the boat. After that incident I had no problem convincing her a better boat was needed. Heard very good things about Parker. They were plain, but looked very well constructed. Glitzy boats do absolutely nothing for me. At that time Parker’s were sold in Crisfield and a lot of watermen in that area used them and swore by them. In 1992, I bought my 18’ Parker and I hoped it would ride almost as well as my former 19’ Mako. To my delight it rode far superior. I do not want to knock Mako boats – I like mine – but the improvement in ride of the Parker was dramatic. I have ridden in a number of other shallow draft boats in the 17’-19’ range and none can compare. The Parker looks and runs like new. If there anything negative about an 18’ Parker it is that there is limited storage.
Famous Little BoatI do not own a Parker 25'. The reason I'm familiar with your terrific product is that I've chartered one many times for my shipwreck search expeditions. The Diversity actually belongs to Ralph Wilbanks, of Isle of Palms, SC, who used her many, many times for archaeological surveys. Although, I neglected to mention Diversity was a Parker, she is also mentioned in my non-fiction book, The Sea Hunters. She happens to be a very famous little boat, having been used by the NUMA search team to find the Confederate submarine, Hunley; the Republic of Texas Navy ship, Invincible; and the Aimable, the explorer La Salle’s flagship. We’ve used her in Mississippi, several lakes in Maine, and God only knows how many other sites along the Gulf and Eastern Seaboard. Just wanted you to know, you make one hell of a boat. Cheers, Clive Cussler
Plantation, FLI take double pleasure writing this letter to you. Firstly, I celebrate that I'm still alive. Secondly, it's a pleasure indeed to congratulate all of you at Parker Marine on the quality of the boats you build. On Saturday, March 13th, I took my Parker "Sport Cabin" some 26 nautical miles off the coast of El Salvador, Central America, looking for some large, blue marlins, which are abundant in the area at this time of the year. We left our marina at 6 AM and by 7:30 AM we had our lines in the water. A 438 lbs. blue hit one of our artificials just before 10 AM. It took us all of 3 hrs. and 20 minutes to finally bring him on board, at which time we pulled our lines in and headed for shore. We has not traveled more than 6 miles when all hell broke loose! We got hit by the tail end of the bad storm you had in the States that weekend. Wind gusts of 40-60 miles per hour hit us at around 3PM, together with seas of 14-18 feet! I have fished all my life and I have spent thousands of hours in the ocean, never, never in my life have I gone through such a terrifying experience. We fought these seas for over 6 hrs, head-on. The boat took one enormous pounding as it went up and down over the waves. Everyone (five of us) went inside the cabin as the waves crashed on the front windshield and rolled right over the cabin. The upper station took one heck of a beating, GPS dish, horns, lights, radio antennae, upper console, all came off. Bolts and nuts flew all over the place, but the boat held-up. We were all certain that there was no way to survive the storm and the general feeling was that the hull of our Parker would split down the middle at any moment. It was just way too much for our size boat to take, the pounding waves were not more than 10 seconds apart! We had shut down one of the engines in order to conserve fuel, but, yet we ran out of fuel some 6 miles from shore, in about 225' of water. By this time our marina had sent out a native 25' skiff with 50 gals. of gas. It was dark by now, but somehow, after drifting for 10-15 minutes, the skiff showed-up at our side and we began the enormous task of getting some gas into our tank in those rough seas. Engines were re-started and we again headed for the inlet which would take us into protected waters. Friends had lined-up on the side of the inlet with some 15-20 cars shinning their lights so we could see the entrance to the inlet. At this point the waves (18' breakers) were now behind our back and we headed in, full power on the twin 225's. 20 minutes later we finally docked at our marina. No, I didn't kiss the ground, I licked and savored it! It was indeed a miracle we survived. Again, please tell your people they should be proud of their workmanship. I sincerely doubt that I would be writing this, had we been in one of the sporty, sexy looking boats being manufactured today. I'll always be grateful to the Parker group. Cordially yours, Phil
Thank You!Thank you for the courtesy of your time and attention. I enjoyed meeting you and touring the wonderful facility you've built there in Beaufort. I'd also like to say thank you for the care and consideration you and your team put into your boats. As you can see from the enclosed pictures, boating is what we do. Every weekend we are on the water, rain or shine, whether it's 99 or 32°, we are fishing, crabbing, scalloping, or just exploring. When we're not on the water we're usually still on the boat cleaning and taking care of her. With 15 years of age on her, I think she's as attractive and capable as the first day we go her. That says ALOT about the quality boat coming off your line. I step on my boat with a sense of confidence and security for myself and my family. As the boys have gotten bigger, we're looking for another boat. The search will be easy because we all know it will be another Parker. All the best to you and yours, The Weaver Family
Trenton, NCI recently purchased a Parker at Starling Marine. I choose the 23 SE and have found the boat to be absolutely, the finest vessel I've ever owned. I thought initially, I wanted a "bay" type boat, however, after looking at some other brands my wife and I decided they were just too busy. The salesman walked us through the process and we discovered the perfect boat for our family. The 23 SE is an extremely dry riding boat and has plenty of power with the 200 Yamaha 4 cylinder. This is quality at its best!
Greensboro, NC"I am about to put our 1988 Parker on the market. BTW, the boat is in remarkable condition. She is a beautiful boat and I have really enjoyed her. Just bought a 2008 23' SE in WPB and pulled back to my house at Holden Beach, NC and am working on her to get her ready for the season."
She is a beautiful boat and I have really enjoyed her.
Sulawesi, IndonesiaYesterday, I finally determined the limits of the Parker 18’ I purchased for our marine laboratory in Indonesia. The boat performed very well, and I’m not entirely sure I would be here to write this letter if we had chosen something other than a Parker. Our field station is located on a small island in South Sulawesi, 12 km offshore of the city of Ujung Padang. There is a broad reef complex here, which extends 70 km offshore, and includes 75 islands and more than 400 patch reefs. As part of my research program, every week I’m obligated to sample one of the extremely remote reefs at the shelf edge, some 60 km away. This is the heart of the tropics, and the weather is extremely volatile. We went out to this site loaded fairly heavily, with four people and six SCUBA tanks, and an extra 60 L of gas in jerry cans. Another boat accompanied us, an Austrailian built 23’ hull with a transom-powered extension and twin 175’s. Perhaps because we were jumping waves going into the growing swell, or maybe just due to poor construction; but after an hour the transom extension on the Australian boat split, opening a 2mm crack across the stern all the way around the hull. The Parker had no problems, and actually seems to enjoy being airborne. The hull shows absolutely no propensity to kite coming off the wave crests. After an afternoon of diving in rough water, we headed back to our station just as a large thunderstorm moved in on us. Within 20 minutes, we were in a following sea with 3+ meter swells, and gale-force winds blowing spray off the wave crests. It was pouring rain and visibility was less than 100m. I was not able to stay on course, but had to follow the wind and swell for fear of capsizing. The only way to maintain control on the steep swells was to try to ride the backs, gunning the engines to keep the boat tracking. After more than an hour of this, I was able to run for a nearby island where we spend the night. As heavily as we were loaded and despite the ferocity of the weather, the Parker 18’ handled deftly even when we were occasionally careening down the huge faces. The twin 70 rig gave me extra control, and the props rarely ventilated. I had the impression that the boat was extremely well-balanced and responsive and I could maintain my attitude by just minor adjustment of the throttles. We never took water over the bow, nor had swash come over the stern. I would not have liked to be out in any other lighter, less well-built boat. Because this boat had some special features, I thought I would give you some additional feedback. I should preface my comments by telling you that we work this boat pretty hard, and some of what I have to say is based on a more-than-usual amount of abuse. The boat has been in the water continuously since August 15th, getting baked by the sun and rained on. We use it 3-4 days a week, usually heavily loaded and often in poor weather. It is probably a little small and under-powered for our application, but one of my constraints was finding a boat I could fit inside a 20’ container. The boat will not plane on one 70hp engine with our typical load, but with both engines we cruise at speeds between 45-60 kph depending on the conditions. Aside from a few scratches and wear spots, the hull and deck are in great shape, and the transom seems built to be like a tank. No problems with gel-coat or any of the fiberglass. The custom stainless-steel cutwater is great, and gives the boat more beaching ability, and really does serve to guard us against unseen debris in the water. We’ve hit small boards and branches up to 3” in diameter, and each time they were completely disintegrated by the cutwater with no damage to the hull. I’m pleased with the layout of the deck hardware (the stern hawse pips were good idea for diving, as well as the large scuppers). The SeaStar steering is great, although the wheel support has begun showing signs of premature corrosion. Overall, I’m extremely pleased with by the boat’s design, construction and durability. It does very well in its role as a dive/research boat. The Parker 18’ makes it possible for us to work confidently in and extremely remote place under challenging conditions with a very high margin of safety. We plan to keep the boat down here for the next five to six years, and I’m quite certain it will perform like a champ. I promise you, if I have another opportunity to buy a research boat, I’ll get another Parker – I still have my eye on the 23’ Cuddy with twin 150’s. Sincerely, Michael Moore Station Supervisor