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"Done Just Right"
The New Krogen 58 Is A Real Head Turner,
The First Next Generation Yacht From Kadey-Krogen.
By Bill Parlatore

Jan/Feb 2002 PassageMaker

It can be a leap for a Boatbuilder to introduce a new flagship, a vessel markedly different or larger than its existing models. This is especially difficult when the builder decides to raise the standard of quality and equipment at the same time.

Kadey-krogen has apparently done just that.

Something Old, Something New

Ask an experienced cruiser about good cruising boats, and the list will most certainly include the ever-popular Krogen 42. Considered by many to be one of the best liveaboard trawlers ever built, the Krogen 42 offered full displacement, single engine, raised enclosed pilothouse, covered aft cockpit, and full liveaboard accommodations. During its long production run, the boat embodied Jim Krogen's core philosophy of long range, liveaboard cruising ability.

Krogen was a respected naval architect with an extensive career in both commercial and pleasure boat design. Before anyone else knew that trawlers were cool, Jim krogen was supplying the world with the 36-foot Manatee, the Krogen 54, and the Krogen 42.

He passed on in 1995, but Kadey Krogen Yachts has continued on, replacing the aging 42-footer with the Krogen 39 and several versions of the larger Krogen 48. The two new models are favorites among the trawler crowd, found in Alaska, Mexico, the Bahamas, and throughout the Caribbean. Many owners enjoy them on the relaxed, leisurely circumnavigation of the U.S. East Coast known as the Great Circle Route.

Krogen are synonymous with cruising.

We recently spent some time on the newest Krogen an extremely well executed 58-foot trawler that is both a new flagship and the first of the next generation of trawlers from Kadey-Krogen Yachts. In all areas, this boat sets a new standard for Kadey-Krogen in comfort, capability, and construction.

Why A New Boat?

"I've always had a desire to develop an Alaskan-style trawler." Kurt Krogen told me. Kurt is president of Kadey-Krogen Yachts, and son of the late Jim Krogen.

"We based this boat on one of my father's other designs, a 60-foot commercial trawler he designed for the University of Miami. We needed the boat to be big enough for a true Portuguese bridge, and we designed it so the bridge flows into the boat deck. It is subtle, but from a stylistic view, I think the Krogen 58 looks great."

The boat has nice overhangs, reverse raked pilothouse windows, and asymmetrical saloon.

"We solicited customer feedback during the design phase." Kurt continued. The need for a comfortable flybridge was confirmed from their suggestions.

The plan was to take the seaworthy characteristics of the Krogen 54 (a Romsdahl-style passagemaker of which Krogen built eight) and merge it with the Krogen 48 Whaleback (a more modern boat with enormous accommodations and liveaboard comfort).

"We wanted a handsome, rugged offshore boat, built to the highest level. Where the Krogen 42 was a good value, we wanted to bring everything on this boat to a new level: design, equipment, and execution.

"I think we've succeeded."

Advanced Hull Shape

One thing that always amazes me is the general lack of understanding that full displacement hulls are not all the same shape. There is quite a bit of diversity in interpreting the displacement game, and the people at Kadey-Krogen are emphatic that hull shape is a large measure of their success of their boats.

"Krogen hulls have a natural motion at sea," Kurt Krogen explained. "That is due to form stability and ballast."

In order to explain this point, Kurt said that his father always compared traditional round-bilge hulls to floating logs. Both have very little natural resistance to roll. Simply adding ballast is not the answer, as that often creates another motion in which the ballast constantly resists the log's natural tendency to roll. It is a most uncomfortable motion in a seaway.

All full displacement Kadey-Krogen yachts have flatter hull sections that sweep up to the stern, essentially a double-ended stern at the waterline. This is not new, of course as the old masters (such as Ed Monk) routinely finessed underwater boat shapes to produce a more seakindly hull form.

Two Better Than One

An interesting difference between the Krogen 58 and the rest of the Kadey-Krogen fleet is that the Krogen 58 comes standard with twin engines. Yes, I know the single versus twin debate doesn't usually come into play when discussing full displacement passagemakers, but there are several specific reasons why the designers opted for twins in this application.

Make no mistake, the boat is a full displacement hull form, so its speed envelope remains under 11 knots no matter what. But splitting the required horsepower and drivetrain into two smaller plants allows smaller propellers and rudders. One foot is taken off the draft of the single-powered boat, reducing its draft to just 5 feet, 6 inches. That means a user-friendly gunkholer in shallow waters, perfect for Chesapeake Bay, the Delta, or the Bahamas.

Having two smaller engines means that redundancy is built in, eliminating the need for a small and often anemic wing engine or PTO-powered hydraulic drive off the main shaft. With two identical engines one might even argue that parts can be cannibalized from the second engine, as unlikely as that may he in the real world. And let's not forget the improved close-quarters handling, even though the boat has a bow thruster

'"Twin keels nix the old bugaboo of twin engines,"Kurt said. "There is as much protection for the running gear on this boat as for a single-engine configuration." Twin propellers are usually left exposed outside the safely of a hull's keel, and damage from Healing debris and, submerged logs remains a real threat in some areas, not to mention damage from grounding.

"The twin keels add roll dampening to some extent, and another benefit is that the yacht can sit level on the bottom on an outgoing tide......unless it sits on soft mud."

The negative of this twin-engine setup is a 10 to 15 percent loss efficiency, but the boat has ample fuel capacity to compensate.

Quality Is A Team Effort

Everyone who has been aboard the Krogen 58 comments it is the best effort yet from the builder. I asked Kurt about this sentiment.

Clearly, his current interest is to pursue a higher level of quality, a personal goal of both Kurt and his vice president of operations in Taiwan, Miguel Rios. "We wanted to merge the beauty of my father's boats will the highest quality equipment available."

To further underscore this goal, the yard responsible for building Kadey Krogen's trawlers, Asia boat, has been renamed and relocated to a new facility in Kaioshung, Taiwan. Asia Harbor Yacht Company is a modern boat building facility with better lighting, dust control, and the latest in safety and environmental awareness. Mr. Lin Kao Shui, President of Asia Harbor Yacht Company, shares Kurts and Miguel's goal to bring Kadey-Krogen to a new level.

Kurt's brother, Jimmy Krogen, is the naval architect/project manager for all design issues on the 58-footer, following closely his father's model of form stabilization on displacement hulls. Jimmy was responsible for all stability testing of the new yacht. Working with Jimmy was Charles Allen, a talented engineer who spent years working with Jimmy's father. Allen produced some 60 full page blueprints of the boat, leaving nothing to the builders imagination. Every detail of the boat was worked out ahead of time.

Another long time associate of Jim Krogen was Dave Pritchard of Pritchard Engineering. Dave did all of the structural and machinery engineering. And Ft. Lauderdale-based marine electrical engineering company, Wards Electric, took charge of the complex electrical system analysis and design.

The first Krogen 58 buyers (Dennis and Julie Fox, Dennis and Joyce Maud, Charlie and Marcia Corbett, and Norman and Madeline Gaut) had a hand in the process as well, choosing preferences before permanent tooling of the production boat took place.

In addition to the talented engineering work, Kurt and Miguel sought out world-class materials for constructing and outfitting the new boat, rather than relying on local suppliers.

For example, replacing teak exterior doors are expensive Freeman doors, and all windows and frames are now Gebo units, built by Boomsa in the Netherlands.

Other quality products include Cantalup lighting from Italy, German precision door locks, Japanese varnish. Awlgripped decks (US paint even developed a new color called "Kadey -Krogen Beige"), and Cook gelcoat that is resistant to UV damage.

Other major upgrades include lead ballast instead of iron, improved glues and sealants, better quality hardware and fixtures, even the hull-deck joint has been improved.

Have I piqued your interest? Thought so.

First Impressions

It's easy to see the family resemblance from the dock, but the Krogen 58 is larger and more rugged. Beefy ,shippy, serious. (The 58-foot designation is the length on deck. LOA is actually 63 feet.)

Unlike Krogen yachts of past years, which have always struck me as happy, self-reliant cruising homes, the look of the Krogen 58 is more business. This is no yacht toy designed to chug merrily along from port to port in fine weather, but a rugged and fully competent passagemaker able to go anywhere. And yet totally in keeping with the Kadey-Krogen tradition, it is also a comfortable and spacious liveaboard home.

The boat has a well-flared bow, tall Portuguese bridge, and reverse-raked pilothouse windows-visually the trawler exudes competence.

But if it does look serious it doesn't carry a workboat image. "We wanted a boat that wasn't industrial strength," said Charlie Corbett, owner of Billy the Eagle. "Krogens are very homey boats, very capable but comfortable."

The track record of Kadey-Krogen also supports a feeling of buyer confidence. "Everyone has a different idea of what makes a good boat," Charlie continued, "so buying a known quantity was important to us."

On Deck

There is a four-inch rubrail that runs from the stern forward to just below the pilothouse windows. It is a minimum of 24 inches off the water, fine for fending off pilings and fuel docks.

A starboard door is 10 feet forward of the stern, providing normal entry from the dock. The swim platform also provides access through a transom door, and there is another side door on the bridge deck outside the pilothouse. Access is reasonable for all sorts of docking and tidal situations, from high to low. (There is a port-side door off the aft cockpit, but given the asymmetrical layout, which extends the saloon out to the port hull, most docking will occur on the traditional starboard side.)

The starboard side deck is a minimum of 20 inches wide at fool level.

The covered aft cockpit is 7 feel long by 15 feet wide, and headroom is at least 6 feet 6 inches. Two stainless steel structures support the upper boat deck, and the easily enclosed cockpit begs for comfortable chairs and a table. This cockpit will be cozy in an anchorage.

It is all so civilized, yet the massive Freeman saloon doors hint that anchorage could be as far away as one's imagination. A 32-inch by 52-inch cockpit hatch leads down to the lazarette and engine room.

There is just a bit of exterior brightwork-the starboard side deck, aft cockpit, and varnished cap rail-so varnish and leak maintenance won't be an unreasonable chore.

Walking forward on the starboard side, one is protected by high bulwarks (up to 38 inches high), and the deck transitions into molded nonskid on steps up to the bridge deck. A narrow door seals off the aft cockpit from the starboard side deck, another reason for enclosing the aft cockpit for added living space when the seasons change.

A beautilully-crafled stainless steel handrail on the side of the saloon helps moving forward under way. It is one nice piece of stainless work.

Four diesel fuel fills are found inboard of the side deck, tucked inside a recessed box with a controllable drain, so fueling isn't done on one's hands and knees, living in fear of diesel stains on leak decks.

Up on the bridge deck, the Portuguese bridge is a minimum of 41 inches high. There are port and starboard side doors outside the pilothouse for getting off the boat at particularly high fuel docks (as in Halifax, Nova Scotia).

Since the saloon extends out the port side, port-side steps lead up to the boat deck and flybridge. Tall stainless steel stanchions add security to the perimeter of the upper deck, and the low-maintenance, molded flybridge has two Chairs. a curved bench seat with table, and offers marvelous visibility in nice weather.

Billy the Eagle, Hull No. 5803, has a freezer on the boat deck and a matching storage locker, both just forward of a 12-fool tender and Nautical Structures low-profile davit. A folding mast can lower to meet bridge restrictions, reducing the boat's height to just 15 feet.

Through the Portuguese bridge is the 12-foot-long foredeck, and nice seats built into the forward side of the bridge, with storage lockers under. At the bow there is a 32-inch-wide anchor platform that easily holds a 176-pound Bruce anchor as well as a second monster hook, both managed by a huge Maxwell windlass.( Few production boats make provision for two fully rigged anchors on the bow.) It is 10 feet down to the water from the bow.

A very sexy 20 inch round Freeman submarine hatch opens into divided chain lockers in front of a watertight collision bulkhead. A ladder leads down into the lockers, which are ' each over five feet deep.

There are five lockers built into the Portuguese bridge, and an outboard wing station on the starboard side for close-quarters maneuvering. Driving a big boat like this is a piece of cake with a powerful thruster, especially when controlling the slow movements of a heavy boat from a location with excellent visibility.


The interior of the Krogen 58 is cherry with off-white laminate. The look is contemporary yet classic. The parquet sole is a hold out to Kadey-Krogen tradition, and fits the rest of the interior. Charlie Corbett laughed when he mentioned that had he ordered the boat with carpeting, Kurt Kogen told him it would still be built with the parquet flooring. Kurt made it clear, "Krogens have parquet soles and they always will!"

The saloon is 10 feet long by 14 feet wide, and headroom is 6 feet 8 inches throughout. On the starboard side is an L-shaped settee, with a movable table that opens out for large dinner parties. Under all of the cushions is additional storage.

Across from the settee are cabinets, with space for a couple of upholstered chairs. In the saloon, the windows are 32 inches tall, strategically placed so those seated can see outside, as well as those standing.

The Corbetts installed a 41-inch by 24-inch Sony plasma screen on the side of the galley counter, so the crew in the saloon can watch movies and satellite television. Charlie explained the boats electronics charts are also easily projected onto this screen. Such technology!

The galley is built around a 7-foot by 8-foot area forward of the saloon, and with the side door open seems much larger. In addition to the long counter, the Krogen 58 features a Jenn-air refrigerator/freezer, a four-burner Broadwater stove with oven, a GE microwave, trash compactor, and Miele dishwasher. There is more than enough storage around the galley, and a large separate pantry is just across on the port side.

The satin finish and joinerwork on the Krogen 58 represents excellent craftsmanship. Perhaps it is highlighted by the brightness and warmth of cherry, but the overall quality of this interior will withstand comparison to any other yacht.


Five steps up from the saloon leads to the pilothouse, a favorite feature on all Kadey-Krogens. On the 58, it is just that much bigger. Measuring roughly 12 feet square, the pilothouse is enormous, with wide floor space to move around, even with a centerline Stidd helm chair mounted in front of a recessed helm console. Many pilothouse trawlers are a tight fit with a helm chair, forcing crew to squeeze by each other. Not so on this boat.

Behind the helm is a wide L-shaped settee with an adjustable table that doesn't take up too much space. (Why is it that so many pilothouse tables are too narrow for meals under way, or way too big, like being jammed behind a corner booth for eight at a dinner? Don't designers ever go on their boats?)

On both sides of the helm are large flat surfaces, 48 inches by 30 inches, handy for chart work, complete with four chart drawers under.

Visibility is excellent from the helm with seven large windows (the aft two open), large Freeman doors with dogs, and two opening ports.

When O ran several hundred miles on this boat, I found most crew collect in the pilothouse, yet everyone still has their space. Even though Kadey-Krogen is known for great pilothouses, in this case bigger is better.

Forward Accommodations

Down wide stairs from the galley to the staterooms, there is a small stateroom immediately on the port side. It is actually more of an office than a stateroom, but the way the 24-inch-wide doorway is situated, diagonal to the companionway, it seems a larger cabin. There is a single settee berth and built-in desk. File drawers, shelves, and hanging locker somehow all fit in the 5-foot by 8-foot cabin.

A 28-inch-wide passageway leads forward to two larger staterooms and en suite heads. The first stateroom is on the starboard side of the boat, and measures 8 feet by 9 feet. Large opening ports make it delightfully airy and bright, especially with cabin door ajar. Cherry and light laminates are used equally to make it delightfully airy and bright, especially with cabin door ajar. Cherry and light laminates are used equally to make it feel modern without being glitzy. There is a queen berth, and ample storage, in the form of drawers and lockers, for extended living aboard.

This is the first boat where the master stateroom is not obvious. This midship stateroom would be my choice for a master cabin, yet the Corbetts chose the forward stateroom. While the forward stateroom is nice and roomy, not really being in the pointy end of the boat due to the collision bulkhead, it doesn't really offer better accommodations or storage.

Both staterooms have large heads with Corian counters and walk-in showers.

To compound the "which stateroom?" dilemma, there is a closet between them with full-size Sewdish Asko washer and dryer. Easily accessed from either stateroom, it makes washer/dryer installation in the lazarette seem rather primitive.

Engine Room

Across from the office/stateroom is the engine room access, through yet another dogged door, this one with a round window. Just inside the engine room, headroom is more than 7 feet, at least for a couple of feet. But in that couple of feet is a workbench, tool box storage, and the fuel management system, close by the two 154hp, M1-rated Deere 6068TFM engines. There is 5-foot 2-inch headroom at the front of the engines, which are separated by 32 inches, quite enough to get around and past them to reach the aft end of the space, which still offers over 4 feet of headroom. An aft watertight door opens into the lazarette, making two good entry points into the engine room

The engine room is 17 feet long, and does not feel cramped even with the standard 20kW and 8kW Northern Lights gensets, TRAC stabilizers, and other systems found on a capable trawler. This is accomplished by using other forward bilge spaces as machinery and pump rooms, easily accessed through sole hatches. Watermaker, head pump, thruster access, air conditioning compressors, house batteries, inverters, chargers, hot water heater-all are found outside the engine room in these other spaces. This is a good idea, especially given the detrimental effects on some gear from engine heat.

All four aluminum fuel tanks have sight gauges, and it is easy to reach manifolds and filters. The systems on the Krogen 58 are clearly designed with maintenance in mind, a result of Kadey-Krogen's up-front engineering. I congratulate you guys for this.

The two engines are enough power to drive the boat at 9.1 knots at 1,800 rpm, topping out at 10.4 knots. With the Aquadrive vibration dampening and thrust hearings, noise and vibration are minimized throughout the boat, such as the measured 61dB measured in the pilothouse and 72dB in the saloon at 9.1 knots.

One Fine Boat-Fleet To Follow

As I eased Billy the Eagle away from the dock, using the twin engines and thruster to gently maneuver out of the light confines of the marina in shallow water, we churned up enough mud to show off the shallow draft advantage of the twin engines. A deeper draft single screw boat would have stuck fast in the messy goo.

From the wing station, then in the pilothouse, and later on the flybridge, I felt captain of a real ship, a rock solid vessel that was neither too fancy nor rough and tumble. A good mix of rugged strength, beauty, and grace.

The enormous development that went into the Krogen 58 is now being applied lo the rest of the Kadey-Krogen fleet. Expect to see major upgrades in doors, windows, hardware and materials on all future boats.

Kadey-Krogen takes a real-world approach to design and layout, so space is never crammed with tight accommodations and unrealistic ergonomics. That is what I love about the Krogen 39. The boats just feel comfortable.

So it is with its new big sister.

For a trawler whose base price is just under $1.5 million, I can honestly report I found nothing to gripe about. The Krogen 58 really is this good. And she leads the way for improving the other boats in the fleet.

Kadey-Krogen's next generation of trawler yachts remains true to Jim Krogen's original concept of a capable and comfortable cruiser. It works as well today as it did 20 years ago. But now, with better materials and premier products sourced from around the world, today's Krogen is no old-time classic, but an evolved little ship limited only by the dreams of its owners.

But don't just take my word for it. Charlie and Marcia Corbett love their new Krogen.

When asked if he felt the boat was too big for a cruising couple, even a couple who have owned 15 boats over the years, Charlie admitted they had some initial concerns, but it's worked out fine.

"Handling a big boat is actually easier than it looks," Charlie explained. "It is slow to react to wind and power, but over time I've learned to use that to my advantage."

Marsha agrees. "This is the best boat we've ever owned. I just love it. There are so many places to go on this boat, and I love having a full size washer and dryer.

"At first I expected to be intimidated, but I lost that right away. The more we use the boat, the less intimidated I am. I now find it very easy to run this boat. There is nothing I would change."

Trawlering never had it so good.

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