Friends Kirsten and Seraphine build the first two MTI 390XR canopy pleasure boats

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For those who have been readers of Speedonthewater.com for some time, it is no surprise that Michigan boaters Burton and Yvette Kirsten are the first to order an MTI 390XR, the new canopy version from the company Wentzville, Mo . popular 39 foot twin-engine catamaran. It should also come as no surprise that the Kirstens are partly responsible for MTI’s decision to offer a recreational boat offering similar to the manufacturer’s 450R Factory Stock racing boat.

MTI will start building its 390X sailing catamaran in a pleasure boat version, with the first two being launched next summer. Photo by Pete Boden / Shoot 2 Thrill Pix

The fun-loving couple recently owned two MTI catamarans, the Small Jet 340X and the delivered-this-spring Jetster 390X, both powered by Mercury Racing 450R engines and several Outerlimits Offshore Powerboats, including a pair of 46-foot enclosed sailing catamarans, NS and MAXIMUM. And the fact that the Kirstens teamed up, if you will, with their friend from Minnesota who also has a long-standing affiliation with Outerlimits, Adam Seraphine, to build the first two MTI 390XR catamarans is a beautiful story. Mainly because they came up with the idea together, with help, of course, from Rusty Williams (left to right with Seraphine and Kirsten below) from the Performance Boat Center in Osage Beach, Mo.

“It’s going to be a lot of fun doing this with Adam – he’s so excited and the guy has such a big heart,” said Burton Kirsten. “We’ve been talking about the idea of ​​a sail and outboard motor boat for a while now, so we have a lot of ideas that we’re going to work with MTI to accomplish. I have built a lot of boats over the years and am looking for new ideas, whether it’s my idea or someone else’s. I also do this in my own business. We are always trying to find ways to make things better.

“I really enjoyed the outboard boats, don’t get me wrong, I love NS and the power of the Mercury Racing 1350 engines, but the 450R engines are amazing, ”he added. “Once you have a few breakdowns with the big horsepower and the repair bill that goes with them, it’s easy to get into the outboards. MTIs are excellent boats. They look good and they are fun to drive. I can’t say enough good things about Rusty and the whole team at Performance Boat Center. I have been sailing my whole life and still cannot understand how well PBC has treated me over the past few years. The coolest thing about buying a boat in Rusty is that he spends time teaching you how to ride it.

Seraphine is particularly excited about the build as it is his first time ordering a new boat and because he will have the involvement of Burton and Rusty to guide him through the process.

“Like many boaters, I’ve been reviewing outboard products for quite some time,” Seraphine said. “The funny thing is that Burton and I talked about the fact that there are no good canopy options and why. I think after hearing us complain about it quite often, Rusty decided to have a more serious discussion with us about some options. It started from there. “

Seraphine added that Williams ended up putting them in touch with MTI owner Randy Scism and that they had a reunion scheduled a few weeks later when they all went to be together at Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri, the MTI waterway.

“We met Randy and Taylor (Scism’s daughter and MTI’s customer relations manager) at Performance and were pleasantly surprised at how well they showed up at the meeting,” said Seraphine. “They had some preliminary renderings and some thoughts on how that would play out inside and out. I had been in the new Burton 390X a few times before the meeting so I knew how it performed and wanted something in that size range. A four-poster version of this boat with five seats, two in the bow and three in the back, seemed to me to be the perfect boat. The canopy will also have two hatches, one on each set of seats, just like the Outerlimits.

“I’m super excited to be able to make this boat my own. I’ve always had used boats, which comes with a kind of sacrifice because you buy someone’s thoughts and dreams and ideas. ‘another,’ added Seraphine, who is probably going to go with a solid red paint job with a black background, similar to that of her Outerlimits SV 43 which is powered by twin Mercury Racing 700SCi engines. “I have a feeling that I have someone like Burton, who has built several new boats and is not afraid to give his opinion, is going to help the process go smoothly. I can’t wait to see what MTI will offer in terms of fit and finish for the boat. Burton and I have already given them some ideas in terms of styling and other things we want like air conditioning which is a must.

MTI shared this render of its 390XR with Kirsten and Seraphine during a meeting at Lake of the Ozarks.

Both Kirsten and Seraphine have said that safety and the weather are the two reasons they enjoy owning canopy boats.

“To me that makes sense, it really does,” Kirsten said. “It’s so comfortable to be sheltered from the wind and heat on the days like we experienced this year during Shootout at the Lake week. Plus, it extends the boating season on the cooler days by the lake or at home.

Thanks to his canopy exterior limitations, Seraphine said he navigates in 50-degree and 100-degree weather and appreciates that he and his passengers don’t have to worry about sun or wind fatigue on a sweltering day. on the water.

“If the weather aspect is a factor that explains why I wanted this boat, it’s also a question of safety,” said Seraphine. “Everyone is going to buckle up with five point harnesses and an overhead canopy. I’ve always taken safety seriously – you can ask the 10 or 12 people I let ride with me (laughs). Everyone who has been in my boat understands the safety factors and the evacuation plan in case something goes wrong. “

Seraphine, whose catamaran experience has come in the form of getting behind the wheel with friends like Kirsten from time to time, added that he was looking forward to having more time sitting in his own cat, which he hopes will be. delivered at the end of July 2022.

“I’m especially excited to try something new,” Séraphine explained. “I’m also happy to be able to put a friend behind the wheel while I go around the throttle. I like the idea that this is a more collaborative effort.

Check out the slideshow above for more images of Adam Seraphine and Burton and Yvette Kirsten with their friends and boats. Photos courtesy of Pete Boden, Jeff Helmkamp and Adam Seraphine.

Kirsten said Performance Boat Center already has a deposit on Throw away but that the next 390X owner has to wait until after the Key West Poker Run in November to get it.

“When Rusty told us that Burton really wanted to build a closed-wing 390X, we took it seriously because we considered building a deck mold for the racing boat to make it more user-friendly anyway.” Taylor Scism said. “Currently we use 390X molds and put the canopy after the fact. We have high security standards; we use the same safety equipment and the same lamination schedule that we used when we worked with the Abu Dhabi team on their XCAT boat. These are all UIM standards, so these are the highest standards we can meet.

Taylor Scism said the same standards apply to new pleasure craft, which she added could be used for both recreation and racing, if a customer so wished.

“We have built four-seater racing boats before, but when we built our first 390X racing boat, we built it with two seats because it’s pretty much a test rig for the new one. class, ”she said. “And so far so good. The 450R seems like a reliable package for racing. And we really put the engines to the test between races, practice and high speed shootouts. When I was with John Tomlinson in the last race he told me that with the amount of testing we did in our boat, he should have re-engineered his Supercat class boat twice already. I think there is has a lot of potential for this class.

She also thinks that having a four- or five-seater racing boat is a good idea so that they can take potential racers or media and sponsors for demonstrations.

“We’re building our team’s next racing boat now and we could build it with the extra seats so we can race it in poker races next season as well,” Scism said. “That’s the beauty of this boat. He can race one weekend and go boating the next. The advantage of the canopy is that it can extend your boating season on both sides.

Editor’s Note: Speedonthewater.com plans to monitor construction of the two MTIs over the next year.

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