Lavey Craft 2750 NuEra Poker Run Edition: Performance Report
Lavey Craft 2750 NuEra Poker Run Edition: Custom model features first-rate construction quality.
Lavey Craft doesn’t just race its boats in Factory 1. The company allows its customers to live the dream. Take the new 2750 NuEra Poker Run Edition, for example. Nearly everything about the 2750 NuEra we tested in San Diego was the same as what you’ll find on the company’s race boats. From the lamination schedule to the bolsters, rigging and the secondary instrument cluster on the port side, the 2750 NuEra Poker Run Edition is, for all intents and purposes, a race boat with a back seat.
“Obviously, anybody who races in Factory classes knows that the money is not really why you do it,” said Jeff Camire, who co-owns Lavey Craft with his brother, Chris. “You do it for the notoriety and to have people see it, and to have them say, ‘I can have that boat.’ That’s why I like factory racing.”
To compete in Factory-class racing, you need more than just build quality and bulletproof rigging—and all Lavey Crafts do. From our perspective, it seems that the 2750 is a fine tool for the job. It’s shorter and a bit lighter than the 2950 NuEra, which the company used to race under American Racing Wheels sponsorship, but it’s just as competent in rough water.
In fact, this boat loves rough water. It takes some seat time to become accustomed to how it likes to be driven, but it runs with a flat attitude and corners well.
It featured two steps. The front running surface was fitted with three strakes. On the middle running surface, the two inner strakes continued, yet were staggered closer to the keel and featured downturned lips at their outer edges. The rear running surface had six strakes.
On the business end, the 2750 NuEra came with a Bravo One 1.5:1 XR drive, a lab-finished 15 1/4″ x 31″ Bravo One propeller and IMCO dual-ram full-hydraulic steering. Power came courtesy of an HP525EFI engine. Lavey Craft also installed 380S K-Planes that had been shortened about 6 inches.
The combination was good for a top speed of 82 mph on GPS. Acceleration was a bit weak on the low end—more a trait of the HP525EFI than the boat—but midrange grunt was good and up top the power was respectable. For example, the boat only hit 33 mph in 10 seconds, but in twice that time, it was steaming along at 62 mph.
In acceleration drills, the 2750 went from 30 to 50 mph in 5.4 seconds. Once the boat got rolling, it was a ball to drive. Chopping the throttle abruptly did produce a slight deceleration reaction. Though it was nothing unsafe, it must be noted.
It also must be noted that the gelcoat graphics on the 2750 likely were some of the best we’ve seen. In fact, the last time we saw in-gel graphics this good, they were on another Lavey. Mold work earned the highest scores possible as did the gelcoat, which was so shiny, it still looked wet.
After the gelcoat graphics were applied, Lavey Craft laid up the boat with 3 ounce mat, 2 mil Coremat, then layers of 1208, 1708 and 1808 fabric. Half-inch and three-quarter-inch Super Lite aerospace balsa was used in the hull and deck, which was vacuum-bagged, screwed, glued and tabbed together at the joint—and left in the mold for three weeks.
The results were astounding, and Lavey Craft protected it with a vinyl extruded rubrail with a rubber insert, also devoid of any waves. Each of the five Accon Pop-Up cleats was set in its own recess with a color-matched bezel.
Under the hatch, Lavey installed the 525 motor properly on through-bolted L-angles. Trim pumps for the tabs and drive were mounted on the transom and all wiring was obsessive-compulsive neat. The bilge was finished in clear resin, which allowed you to see the parquet effect of the balsa construction.
Under the foredeck, there wasn’t much going on, little more than the smell of lamination, actually. Then again, this was a poker run edition not designed for overnighting. As such, the cabin had no door and only sparse accommodations: twin facing lounges and a vinyl drape concealing the forward-most section of the cabin. What more do you need?
In the cockpit, it was another story. Up front the bolsters were set on stainless-steel bases bolted to the floor, which was a liner molded as part of the deck. Lavey Craft learned that if it wants to sell boats on the East Coast, a self-draining liner was a must. It also helps in saltwater environs because you can just hose it out.
At the helm the driver looked over a full complement of Gaffrig by Livorsi Platinum gauges and chromed throttle and shift levers, plus a Mercury SmartCraft System View 5000 monitor. Controls placement was perfect for running and gunning, but Lavey also devoted a lot of thought to the other passengers.
For example, the co-pilot’s station featured a second GPS speedometer, oil-pressure and water-pressure gauges set in their own fiberglass pod—just like the race boat. Rear seat passengers, normally a forgotten lot in terms of boat design, sat in three thickly padded body-hugging bolsters, each with its own stainless-steel grab rail, so everyone had at least two handles to hold in rough water. What’s more, Lavey’s intelligent loop design for the handles meant you couldn’t impale yourself on them.
All three of the seat cushions lifted up for access to draining coolers on the outsides and electrical access in the center. Likewise, all three lifted up with the engine hatch, which featured a Formula 1-style air scoop.
If poker runs are your thing and Factory 1 racing may one day be in your plans, the Lavey Craft 2750 NuEra could be your chance to live the dream.
Hull and Propulsion Information
|Deadrise at transom||24 degrees|
|Hull weight||4,500 pounds|
|Engine||Mercury Racing HP525EFI|
|Lower-unit gear ratio||1.5:1|
|Propeller||Lab-finished Mercury Bravo One 15 1/4″ x 31″|
|Price as tested||$125,085|
Options on Test Boat
Upgrade to Mercury Racing HP525EFI engine ($24,000), vacuum-bag race-boat lamination ($10,000), IMCO full- hydraulic steering ($6,400), Mercury Racing 380S K-Planes ($4,100), SmartCraft System View 5000 ($1,750), Bluewater ignition and switch panels ($1,300), Gaffrig Platinum gauges with GPS ($1,100), Bluewater drive and trim indicators ($950), passenger-side gauge pod ($950), VHF radio ($675), dual batteries with billet boxes ($675), chrome package ($600), Gaffrig levers ($550), drive shower ($275) and transom trim switch ($110).
|Wind speed||2-4 mph|
|Sea conditions||1′ chop|
|5 seconds||17 mph|
|10 seconds||33 mph|
|15 seconds||51 mph|
|20 seconds||62 mph|
|30-50 mph||5.4 seconds|
|40-60 mph||6.5 seconds|
|40-70 mph||11.9 seconds|
Rpm vs. Mph
|Radar||81.8 mph at 5000 rpm|
|Nordskog Performance Products GPS||82 mph at 5200 rpm|
|Time to plane||6.8 seconds|
|Minimum planing speed||15 mph|
|At 25 mph||3.4 mpg|
|At 35 mph||2.5 mpg|
|At 45 mph||2.5 mpg|
|At 55 mph||2.4 mpg|
|At 65 mph .||2.2 mpg|
|At WOT .||1.8 mpg|
|Fuel capacity||100 gallons|
For More Information
210 Benjamin St.
Corona, CA 92879