Hunter 45 legend

The hunter 45 legend is a 46.67ft b&r designed by warren luhrs and built in fiberglass by hunter marine (usa) since 1985..

The Hunter 45 legend is a light sailboat which is a reasonably good performer. It is very stable / stiff and has a good righting capability if capsized. It is best suited as a coastal cruiser. The fuel capacity is originally small. There is a good water supply range.

Hunter 45 legend sailboat under sail

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1986 Hunter Legend 45 SOLD

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Review of Hunter 45 Legend

Basic specs..

The boat is typically equipped with an inboard Yanmar diesel engine.

The fuel tank has a capacity of 178 liters (47 US gallons, 39 imperial gallons).

Sailing characteristics

This section covers widely used rules of thumb to describe the sailing characteristics. Please note that even though the calculations are correct, the interpretation of the results might not be valid for extreme boats.

What is Capsize Screening Formula (CSF)?

The capsize screening value for Hunter 45 Legend is 1.88, indicating that this boat could - if evaluated by this formula alone - be accepted to participate in ocean races.

What is Theoretical Maximum Hull Speed?

The theoretical maximal speed of a displacement boat of this length is 8.4 knots. The term "Theoretical Maximum Hull Speed" is widely used even though a boat can sail faster. The term shall be interpreted as above the theoretical speed a great additional power is necessary for a small gain in speed.

The immersion rate is defined as the weight required to sink the boat a certain level. The immersion rate for Hunter 45 Legend is about 340 kg/cm, alternatively 1909 lbs/inch. Meaning: if you load 340 kg cargo on the boat then it will sink 1 cm. Alternatively, if you load 1909 lbs cargo on the boat it will sink 1 inch.

Sailing statistics

This section is statistical comparison with similar boats of the same category. The basis of the following statistical computations is our unique database with more than 26,000 different boat types and 350,000 data points.

What is Motion Comfort Ratio (MCR)?

What is L/B (Length Beam Ratio)?

What is Displacement Length Ratio?

What is SA/D (Sail Area Displacement ratio)?


Are your sails worn out? You might find your next sail here: Sails for Sale

If you need to renew parts of your running rig and is not quite sure of the dimensions, you may find the estimates computed below useful.

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Practical Sailor new boat review: Hunter 45DS

New layout and twin steering stations fail to win over testers..

legend 45 sailboat

Photo courtesy of Hunter Marine

With the requisite fanfare, Hunter Marine unveiled its latest large auxiliary model, the Hunter 45DS (initials stand for “deck saloon”) in late 2007. Intended to a replace the companys popular 44DS, which had been in production since 2002, the new boat is essentially an upgraded version with twin wheels, a new transom, new styling, and a roomier, reconfigured interior layout.

It takes features from previous Hunters-including the Pullman berth from the 41 and the cockpit layout with twin steering stations from Hunters flagship 49-and meshes them with distinctive wraparound-style saloon windows and nearly elliptical port lights.

The 45DS also boasts of improved performance and enhanced sailhandling, but these should be taken in proper context. According to Hunter, the company has sold 152 hulls since the boats debut in 2007, making it a fairly successful endeavour, particularly considering market conditions.

As director of engineering and chief naval architect at Hunter Marine, Glenn Henderson comes by his performance-leaning outlook honestly. Before joining the company in 1997, he had been a cruising sailor, a race-boat designer, and an avid surfer. Henderson designed the SR21, SR33, and the Henderson 30, among other racing designs, and is credited with improving the performance of Hunters products.

The 45DS is a good example of the challenges Henderson faces. The typical Hunter clienteles preferences for roomy, comfortable, easily sailed cruisers do not always lend themselves to more fleet-footed or offshore-friendly designs.

Hendersons hull design on the 45DS is almost identical to the 44 it replaced, and the respective rig dimensions appear to be identical as well. To perform better in choppy conditions and resist pitching motion, the 45DS carries the same bow hollow and relatively shallow forefoot of the 44DS. But, to increase interior volume in the 45-an imperative according to Hunters customer surveys-Henderson opted for relatively high freeboard and additional length. The hull is over a foot longer than the 44DS, though it measures the same at the waterline.

To improve handling in tight quarters, Henderson also matched a relatively large, nearly elliptical rudder with a smaller keel.

Because Henderson endowed the transom with increased radius, it lacks the pronounced reverse slope of the 44 as well as the deep platform seats and lazarettes. Only a 12-inch shelf remains to serve as a boarding step and swim platform. The change allows for more space in the master cabin just beneath it.

The transom modifications meant that the center of gravity shifted aft. Correspondingly, Henderson had to move the keels center of gravity forward and tweak the mast placement. But market forces also account for differences in the keel configuration. Due to the rapidly increasing cost of lead (which tripled in price during 2007), Hunter now uses a keel and strut cast entirely from iron. The downside is that even minor groundings invite the risk of rust. While there are plenty of iron-keel boats still sailing today, their owners are typically the ones starting the pre-launch spring ritual a month before everyone else, as they grind, prime, and seal weeping craters. Needless to say,  Practical Sailor much prefers lead ballast keels.

The deck-stepped B&R rig that Hunter has used for years on all of its larger models changed very little from the 44 to the 45. The cap shrouds on the 45 extend out to the toerail, while the lowers run to the base of the cabinhouse. The design is meant to reduce compression loading on the rig and dispense with the backstay. A 574-square-foot mainsail provides the majority of the horsepower. The 110-percent, fractional (4/5) furling headsail is relatively small at 388 square feet. Hendersons decision to mount the mainsail traveler atop the arch offers some convenience and keeps sheet loads at the end of the boom, but it also pushes the boom and center of effort higher above the waterline than youll find on many other monohulls in this category.

Forty-five-feet long is about the smallest you can go when matching an airy deck saloon with the canoe-shaped underbody of a contemporary cruiser without looking silly. Hunter does a better job than others at minimizing the bulky profile with a wraparound windscreen styling and a gradual transition to the maximum cabin height.

The twin helm stations afford good visibility forward, good protection for the helmsperson, and reasonable comfort. The space between the wheel and the transom measures 16 inches, less than youll find on many boats this size. The cockpit sole in each station is fitted with a scupper for drainage when heeled.

The cockpit seats are deep (21 inches), seatbacks offer modest support, and the coaming offers good protection. Surprisingly, the seats arent long enough for anyone taller than 5 10″ to fully recline. However, there is voluminous storage area in the lockers beneath each seat.

Henderson located headsail winches just outboard and forward of each steering station so that the helmsman can manage most of the trimming duties. The primaries (self-tailing Lewmar 48s) on this vessel were electric.

The stout (3-inch diameter tubing), stainless steel radar arch spans the cockpit above the steering stations. The mainsheet traveler controls lead down either side of the arch, within easy reach of the helm. The aft end of the double-ended mainsheet runs through a line clutch on the port-side arch support so that the helmsman can adjust it when its lightly loaded. The forward end of the mainsheet can be controlled by a winch (electric optional) mounted just to starboard of the companionway or by one adjacent to either steering station (self-tailing, electric Lewmar 42s).

The arch, which Hunter fabricates in two pieces for shipping, takes the traveler and mainsheet out of the cockpit, serves to anchor the bimini, and provides a location for overhead stereo speakers.

Throughout the cockpit and on deck, Hunter uses a standard nonskid grid pattern, but in locations like the transom boarding platform, bridgedeck, helm seats, and lazarette lids, faux teak Flexiteek is inlaid. The bridgedeck-at just 8 inches off the cockpit sole-adds headroom in the master cabin below and restricts water in the cockpit from flowing down the companionway. (Subsequent to our test sail, Hunter changed the deck mold, extending the bridgedeck further aft to increase headroom below.)

To facilitate sail trimming, Hunter has mounted Lewmar 40 self-tailing winches on either side of the companionway, just aft of a series of Spinlock XTS rope clutches and complemented by deep cubbies to retain the halyard and sheet tails. A similar containment system for the headsail and mainsail sheet tails near the steering stations would help with the clutter there.

The sidedecks are narrower than other boats weve tested in this size range, but adequate for fore and aft access, with two sections of stainless grabs rail mounted on either side of the cabintop for security. A 2-inch molded-in toerail offers adequate footing when the vessel is heeled.

Immediately aft of the stemhead fitting is a generous anchor well. Hunters engineers have designed a recessed shelf in the aft end of this well and mounted a Lewmar vertical windlass between a U-bolt for the rodes bitter end and a horn cleat. The well is covered by a large, hinged lid, and foot-operated buttons for the windlass are mounted in the deck just aft of the well. The rode has a clean lead off the bow roller to the windlass and from there to the well. However, transferring the load of the rode from the windlass to the cleat is tricky. Wed prefer a chain stopper be added to the system.

In the broad area of the cabintop just forward of the mast partners, Hunter had affixed to the deck a three-piece custom cushion spanning a space the size of a double bed. Nice for daysailing with a large group of friends, these will likely be left at the dock when cruising.

Small hatches ventilate each head, a 16 x 16-inch hatch ventilates the forward cabin, and 20 x 20-inch hatch airs out the saloon. The main saloon also has two cowl vents. There are four opening ports in the cabin trunk (two in the galley, one over the nav station, and one in the aft head), but these arent likely to be open underway. While this ventilation arrangement is better than on some comparable new boats in this size range, we were not surprised that the air-conditioning on our test boat was in operation for much of our time on board.


The 45DS is designed with a two-cabin layout (each with a dedicated head) integrating an ample saloon; a comfortable, efficient galley; and a snug nav station. The interior dcor utilizes cherry-stained panels in the vertical surfaces, Corian countertops, a faux teak and holly sole (veneer over -inch marine plywood coated with aluminum dioxide) and Hunters “Whisper Cloth” (a fancy name for foam-backed vinyl) in the overhead. The solid wood in the fiddles and doors is alder with a cherry finish. The collective effect is airy and open, particularly in the main saloon where 7 feet of headroom and ample natural light from the wraparound windshield set the tone.

In the galley-just to port of the companionway steps-Hunter has maximized stowage capacity with recessed trays beneath the cabin sole and a bank of drawers outboard. Broad Corian countertops arranged in an L shape provide over 6 square feet of work area. Theres easy access to the freshwater manifold under the counter. Batteries are stowed beneath the floor, but the installation on our test boat would not make it easy to service a bank of wet-cell batteries.

Access to the engines key service points is very good, and noise abatement is above average. We measured 74 decibels in the nav station with the engine running at 2,500 rpm. It was 64 decibels in the forward cabin, 76 in the galley, and 74 in the cockpit at that same speed. The optional Fisher Panda 6-kilowatt genset mounted beneath the navigators seat didnt add significantly to the noise level. (Conversation is about 60 decibels).

There is a generous amount of personal stowage in each cabin. The drawers, bins, shelves and a hanging locker in the forward cabin would fit all the clothes that two people would need for a cruise of a week or more. This cabin includes a sizeable Pullman berth to port (75 inches long, 50 inches wide at the shoulders, 30 inches wide at the feet) and good lighting, both task-oriented and general.

Directly forward of this cabin is a separate shower/head that measures 60 by 35 inches and has 6 feet of headroom. This entire space is essentially encased in a molded fiberglass liner that is smooth, with very few areas to trap mildew. One issue Practical Sailor found with the forward cabin is the 5-inch step down into the cabin and the 3-inch step up into the head/shower. Hunter took this route to add more headroom, rather than raise the cabintop.

The aft cabin, which boasts a queen-size berth on centerline, also has an impressive amount of personal stowage, plus a separate door accessing the head. The low overhead-to accommodate the cockpit well above-is a drawback. As the owners cabin, this should be the most luxurious space on board, but you have to stoop to move from one side of the cabin to the other, and the there was limited clearance above the berth. (Modifications to the deck mold since our test sail have improved the space, but theres still not full standing headroom in most of the cabin.)

On top of that, our 195-pound tester broke a 1-inch wooden cleat that supports the access hatch beneath the settee on the port side when he sat on the hatch. Despite this vessels prototype status, that shouldnt happen.

Throughout the interior are numerous inspection hatches in the cabin sole, offering generous access to the mechanical and electrical systems connections. The access is admirable, but none of these hatches were fitted with latches or dogging hardware. (Hunters rep told Practical Sailor that most owners don’t feel such fittings are needed, a surprising comment for a boat intended for offshore passagemaking.) We also questioned the lack of true sea berths on a vessel meant in part for offshore work.


With its 54-horsepower Yanmar auxiliary turning a fixed, three-blade prop, the Hunter 45DS topped 8 knots at 3,000 rpm in flat water and little current. Add some wind and sea, and the 75-horsepower option becomes attractive.

The combination of a large rudder and relatively short keel gives the 45DS good maneuverability. The turning radius was about the length of the vessel, and there was little resistance from the helm while steering. Hunter uses the all-mechanical Mamba system from Whitlock (Lewmar), which is fitted with a direct-drive autopilot. The system incorporates corrosion-prone metals and will need routine inspection and a regular blast of anticorrosive spray.

According to Hunter, the boat we sailed was slightly under-canvassed, and it showed. Hunters largest models have in-mast furling for the mainsail, and thats how the 45DS comes equipped. This arrangement defeats one advantage of the backstay-less B&R rig: accommodating a powerful mainsail with a generous roach. Furling and unfurling is accomplished from the companionway, and an electric winch is optional for the chore. Mounting the mainsail traveler atop the radar arch puts sheeting at the end of the boom, where it belongs, but there are other ways to do this without raising the boom (and the center of effort) more than 11 feet above the water.

The double-ended mainsheet lets you trim the main from the port helm or the companionway. We sailed the boat with 10 people on board in relatively flat seas (about a 1-foot chop) and 13.5 knots of apparent wind. The boat heeled very little, about 6 to 8 degrees in those winds and managed to tack through about 110 degrees. With the wind at 11.6 apparent, we registered 4.6 knots of boatspeed upwind. In 13 apparent, we could make 5.8 knots. Not unexpectedly, the boat slows considerably in a tack, and it took us an average of 35 seconds to get back to full speed. Nonetheless, once moving, the 45DS is responsive and accelerated in puffs.


The current base price of the boat is $268,990, and when Practical Sailor checked online, we found several 45DSs available, priced from $305,000 to $330,000. Thats a lot to pay for a production-grade boat with an iron keel and no batteries (an additional cost tacked on by the dealer).

While plenty of new boat buyers will be satisfied by the boats performance and its deck layout and interior, we have to stop short of a full endorsement. In addition to our test boats disappointing fit and finish, the results of the re-configured twin-wheel cockpit seem out of synch with the boats aspirations. We find it odd that a design that has clearly been re-worked to improve creature comforts doesn’t offer an owners cabin with full standing headroom (available in the 45CC).

Even when you take into account Hunters assiduous pre-testing, the boat falls short of what buyers should expect in this price range. That said, the boats warm response so far suggests that Practical Sailor may be out of step with the marketplace. But we can live with that.

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1986 Hunter Legend 45

  • Description

Seller's Description

This Hunter Legend 45 has been extensively upgraded and sailed across the Atlantic and back to the Caribbean.

The first custom feature you see is the fiberglass hard dodger, then looking around the deck you see the stainless radar arch and extended railings.

Upon entering you see the refinished teak and holly sole, a new teak galley with large pull out drawers, a separate fridge and freezer, and wood finished hull sides.

Looking deeper you will find a water tight bulkhead in the bow with a large anchor locker. There is a second watertight bulkhead in the stern.

Underside you see a new rudder by Phil’s Foils, a 3 blade max-prop, a shoal draft keel and a bow-thruster.

The mast and standing rigging, and running rigging have been replaced. The list goes on with nothing left untouched

Fully rigged for sailing with it’s custom dacron fully battened main with large headboard and roach and a 1.5 oz or 0.75 oz spinaker. Or when it is blowing 45kn use the hanked on #4 on the inner forestay with running backstays and the main double reefed from the cockpit. A spectra laminate #3 and a kevlar laminate #1 for the furling forestay.

Rig and Sails

Auxilary power, accomodations, calculations.

The theoretical maximum speed that a displacement hull can move efficiently through the water is determined by it's waterline length and displacement. It may be unable to reach this speed if the boat is underpowered or heavily loaded, though it may exceed this speed given enough power. Read more.

Classic hull speed formula:

Hull Speed = 1.34 x √LWL

Max Speed/Length ratio = 8.26 ÷ Displacement/Length ratio .311 Hull Speed = Max Speed/Length ratio x √LWL

Sail Area / Displacement Ratio

A measure of the power of the sails relative to the weight of the boat. The higher the number, the higher the performance, but the harder the boat will be to handle. This ratio is a "non-dimensional" value that facilitates comparisons between boats of different types and sizes. Read more.

SA/D = SA ÷ (D ÷ 64) 2/3

  • SA : Sail area in square feet, derived by adding the mainsail area to 100% of the foretriangle area (the lateral area above the deck between the mast and the forestay).
  • D : Displacement in pounds.

Ballast / Displacement Ratio

A measure of the stability of a boat's hull that suggests how well a monohull will stand up to its sails. The ballast displacement ratio indicates how much of the weight of a boat is placed for maximum stability against capsizing and is an indicator of stiffness and resistance to capsize.

Ballast / Displacement * 100

Displacement / Length Ratio

A measure of the weight of the boat relative to it's length at the waterline. The higher a boat’s D/L ratio, the more easily it will carry a load and the more comfortable its motion will be. The lower a boat's ratio is, the less power it takes to drive the boat to its nominal hull speed or beyond. Read more.

D/L = (D ÷ 2240) ÷ (0.01 x LWL)³

  • D: Displacement of the boat in pounds.
  • LWL: Waterline length in feet

Comfort Ratio

This ratio assess how quickly and abruptly a boat’s hull reacts to waves in a significant seaway, these being the elements of a boat’s motion most likely to cause seasickness. Read more.

Comfort ratio = D ÷ (.65 x (.7 LWL + .3 LOA) x Beam 1.33 )

  • D: Displacement of the boat in pounds
  • LOA: Length overall in feet
  • Beam: Width of boat at the widest point in feet

Capsize Screening Formula

This formula attempts to indicate whether a given boat might be too wide and light to readily right itself after being overturned in extreme conditions. Read more.

CSV = Beam ÷ ³√(D / 64)

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Hunter Legend 45

  • Thread starter alankeene
  • Start date Jun 20, 2020
  • Hunter Owner Forums

Im looking at installing a new prop on my 1987 Hunter Legend 45. Its powered by the standard issue Yanmar 4JH-TE 55hp. Can any Legend 45 owner tell me what dia and pitch propeller is on their boat?  

sail sfbay

Propeller Recommendations from Yanmar at Marine Diesel Engine from Torresen Marine's Marine Diesel Direct

Check these guys out for a prop recommendation: Propeller Recommendation Form :: West By North  


Thanks SailSFBay. I have opted for the Campbell Sailor prop 3 blade 17x10  


Hello All. The sea trial with the 17x10- 3 blade went well. great boat speed(8.5 knots) at 2200 rpm! Lots of room for more RPM if needed. Now I have a 3 blade Flex-O-Fold prop to sell if any one wants it?? 18x14 -3 blade-1 1/4 shaft standard taper. $800.00 Canadian.  

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    Find Hunter Legend boats for sale in your area & across the world on YachtWorld. Offering the best selection of Hunter boats to choose from. ... 1987 Hunter Legend 45. US$93,900. ↓ Price Drop. California Yacht Sales, Inc. | San Diego, California. Request Info; 1987 Hunter Legend 37. US$55,000. Little Yacht Sales | Palmetto, Florida.

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  6. Hunter 45 legend

    The Hunter 45 legend is a 46.67ft b&r designed by Warren Luhrs and built in fiberglass by Hunter Marine (USA) since 1985. The Hunter 45 legend is a light sailboat which is a reasonably good performer. It is very stable / stiff and has a good righting capability if capsized. It is best suited as a coastal cruiser.

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  11. 1986 Hunter Legend 45

    You won't find a boat with more bang for your buck, even if all you want is a tiny home this one checks all of the boxes. Equipment: Rigging needs Inspection last Inspection 2012. 1986, USCG registered. Yanmar 4JHE 65 hp diesel engine 3400 hours Maxspeed feathering prop Raymarine type II hydraulic Autopilot and EVO system Garmin 440 ...

  12. 1986 Hunter Legend 45

    description. Hunter Legend 45' Sailboat $79,900 Year: 1986 Hull Material: Fiberglass Draft: 6 ft Cruising Speed: 7.5 knots Max Speed: 9 knots Beam: 13 ft 10 in Mast Height: 63' 3" Cabin Headroom: 6 ft 6 in Ballast: 10900 lb 2 Cabins with two Heads with showers 2008 Yanmar Diesel Engine: 795 hours (Inboard) Total Power: 75 hp Number ...

  13. Hunter 45

    The Hunter 45 and Hunter 45 Legend are a family of American sailboats, that was first built in 1985. The series is often confused with the much later Glen Henderson-designed 2005/2006 Hunter 45 DS and Hunter 45 CC. Production. The boat series was built ...

  14. Review of Hunter 45 Legend

    The DL-ratio for Hunter 45 Legend is 184 which categorizes this boat among 'light racers'. Heavy Light 73% 0 50 100. 73% of all similar sailboat designs are categorized as heavier. A light displacement requires less sailarea and has higher accellerations.

  15. PDF Marlow-Hunter

    As you tour the legend 45 youwill find such detailed items as recessed wells for the winches, traveler. and the anchor well, as well as a walk-through bow pulpit. This advanced styling keeps the Legend 45 and all Hunter boats saier and easier to sail. least 'but not least, is Cruise still the most innova-

  16. Practical Sailor new boat review: Hunter 45DS

    With its 54-horsepower Yanmar auxiliary turning a fixed, three-blade prop, the Hunter 45DS topped 8 knots at 3,000 rpm in flat water and little current. Add some wind and sea, and the 75-horsepower option becomes attractive. The combination of a large rudder and relatively short keel gives the 45DS good maneuverability.

  17. Explore Hunter Legend Boats For Sale

    The oldest boat was built in 1986 and the newest model is 1996. Related boats include the following models: Passage 420, 380 and 33. Boat Trader works with thousands of boat dealers and brokers to bring you one of the largest collections of Hunter Legend boats on the market. You can also browse boat dealers to find a boat near you today.

  18. !986 Hunter Legend 45 f/ Bluewater

    Re: !986 Hunter Legend 45 f/ BLUEWATER. Quote: Originally Posted by bahamarich. There are many great Hunter boats made over the years. The Hunter Legend series during the 90's were really well made. The Hunter 45 a late 80's boat, I believe had some flex issues and required some added structural stiffening.

  19. 1989 Hunter Legend 45 Cruiser Sailboat

    1989 Hunter Legend 45 Cruiser Sailboat. Back to Results > Sail > Cruisers > 1989 46'8" Hunter Legend 45 This listing is no longer active. 1 / 49. Sales Status Sold; ... Sailboats Guide. Covering types, popular brands & ownership. Find out about different sailboat types, sail vs power boat, most popular sailboat brands, what do you need to own a ...

  20. Hunter Legend 45 for Offshore

    Glenda Wolfe. Mar 30, 2004. #4. Sailed from US thru Caribbean on Legend 45. We sailed our Legend 45 from Slidell, LA (New Orleans) to Trinidad and back in 2001-2003 and found it to be just fine. It sails nicely and was easy for my husband and I to handle. Email us at [email protected] and we can give you lots of details about how we were set up.

  21. 1986 Hunter Legend 45

    This Hunter Legend 45 has been extensively upgraded and sailed across the Atlantic and back to the Caribbean. ... the more easily it will carry a load and the more comfortable its motion will be. The lower a boat's ratio is, the less power it takes to drive the boat to its nominal hull speed or beyond. Read more. Formula. D/L = (D ÷ 2240) ÷ ...

  22. Hunter boats for sale

    Find Hunter boats for sale in your area & across the world on YachtWorld. Offering the best selection of Hunter boats to choose from. ... 1993 Hunter 40.5 Legend. US$79,000. ↓ Price Drop. United Yacht Sales | Stuart, Florida. Request Info; Price Drop; 2000 Hunter 460. US$99,900. ↓ Price Drop. Bluewater Yacht Sales | Edgewater, Maryland.

  23. Hunter Legend 45

    9. Hunter Legend 45 Victoria. Jul 28, 2020. #6. Hello All. The sea trial with the 17x10- 3 blade went well. great boat speed (8.5 knots) at 2200 rpm! Lots of room for more RPM if needed.