DRAGESKIP: VIKING YACHTS

In the old Norse world, the DRAGESKIP was the premiere vessel of the time. The literal translation is “Dragon Ship” which was named for the iconic dragon head on the bow of the boat, but the meaning was deeper. It was the drageskips that were revered in the Viking world as the elite watercraft, much like the current Viking Yacht fishing boats. In nearly every marina or every tournament, Vikings are some of the most prevalent and well-respected boats in the water. The boats are a mix of floating works of art and well-tuned machines. Machines that are designed to be run and fished as hard as any. But what is more admired, is the company’s dedication to their products and the passions that fuel them.


PROFILE: CAPT. RYAN HIGGINS
Craziest fish story?
When we are up north white marlin tournament fishing, we almost always use light tackle and 30s for the reels. This specific day we were fishing big baits on the short riggers with 80 wides. The shorts kept getting eaten by white marlin so we did something we almost never do; we switched the big rods to the long rigger and put the dinks on short riggers. Not five min later a 900lb blue marlin came up and crushed a dink bait on the short rigger on the 30wide. We released it in fifteen min but we spent 4 hours trying to put a gaff in it – to no avail. Its the biggest fish I’ve ever caught and also the one that got away.

Who got you into fishing?
I would say my best friends growing up. A few of their parents had fishing boats and I spent summers fishing with them. My family was not into fishing.

Where do you wish you were right now?
Down in the Dominican Republic. Casa de Campo sounds like they have had some really good fishing.

Dream job if you weren’t fishing?
I think I have it. I honestly don’t know what I would do if not for what I am now. With my job now I’m in every aspect of this industry I would want to be. If not in the fishing/boat industry, probably a hunting guide.
Least favorite part of your job?
The last-minute failures that happen. It’s the little things that are unforeseen maintenance. No matter the boat, for every hour of fishing, you have to spend that same time on maintenance and upkeep.

What makes a good fisherman?
There are so many different aspects these days and to be good you have to have many different skills. Networking and communication is a big one. It’s a big ocean and you have to learn to locate the fish with information. Of course fishing instinct plays a part too. And probably today, the technical aspect. The ability read things like sea-surface temps and utilize the high tech equipment to have all of the information. The equipment is only as good as the operator using it.

Something nobody knows about you?
I am half Thai. Everyone who meets me either asks if I am Hawaiian, Chinese, or Puerto Rican, but I’m half Thai and half Irish.


VIKING 72" BUILD TIMELINE
The 72” is on a 12-day line rate which means every 12 days it moves up a stage on the production line.

1. START DATE
The entire work order for the boat is completed and processed followed by parts being ordered.

2. CUT DATE
Interior units and cabinetry begin to be cut and built. Stringers and bulkheads are also cut.

3. HULL MOLD DATE
The hull is layed up in the mold. When the hull is pulled from the mold the deckhouse begins to be layed up.

4. EGG CRATE
Once the hull is pulled from the mold the stringer system, tankage, and structural bulkheads are installed.

5. MECHANICAL
All mechanical equipment including engines, generators, air conditioning compressors, refrigeration compressors, running gear, steering components, gyro stabilizer, and several electrical components are installed. All rough wiring and plumbing forward are installed. Interior decks are laid down and all stateroom units are dropped in and tabbed to the hull followed by the deckhouse being capped.

6. FINISH CARPENTRY
All side sealers are installed. Lighting blocks are installed, wall panels are installed, smaller cabinetry units are installed followed by the headliner installation. Flybridge is installed at this stage.
7. MECHANICAL AND ELECTRICAL STAGE II
All mechanical and electrical components are to the point of being fully installed and wired. All breaker panels are fully wired at this point. This is the first stage where the boat is plugged in and powered up.

8. INTERIOR AND EXTERIOR TRIM
This stage is the completion of installation to all components and hardware on the interior and exterior of the vessel. All hatches and hardware are in, windows are installed, handrails and ladders installed. Carpeting and flooring goes in. Hull boot stripe is taped off and painted.

9. DECOR INTERIOR FINISH
The last stage of the production line where all interior furniture and décor items are installed. The boat interior and exterior go through a thorough quality control process. The engine room is painted and fully detailed and ready for startup.

10. STARTUP
The boat is moved from the production line and is prepped to be splashed. Tanks are filled with fluids and the engines are prepped for start-up and commisioning. The boat is sea trialed for the first time as well as all mechanical systems are started up and tested. Several engineering sea trials are performed to collect performance data as well as test all mechanical and electrical systems while underway.

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