Sunday, May 04, 2008


updated today 05/04/08
originally posted: 10/12/06

Some of us know of the Bottom Line 44' CSY, but few know of the 'real' story behind it. I knew some, but awhile back I came across an article while researching sail rigs. For an "Interesting read", check out this link. (I also added a direct link on the right side of this page under, "Favorite Links"


From what I know, only 6 of the Bottom Line 44's were actually built. I saw 3 of them back in 1985, then none until a few years ago when I found 2 up in Pensacola, Florida. One was in bad shape, but the other, named "Joshua", had been upgraded and showed the input of a loving owner; there is a photo of the one in poor shape, that Ed Marill asked for and is on his site. I pursued things until I got in touch with the owner of the good one owned by Ben Wileman, and got

to view his vessel up close. He's a neat character and along the years we have continued to stay in touch.

The original idea of the vessel was to have a large fish hold centered in the boat, with a crew compartment forward and a Captains quarters aft and work center in the tall pilothouse. This commercial pilothouse provides a good visible with navigation counter, resting berth, and galley-- sliding doors either side. A shaded area was built over the fish hold; side decks are continuous, with no steps or raised section aft. Sloop rigged with roller furling for jib and main,so sailing is all about line control.

BOTTOM LINERS were all deep draft 44's. Above deck rails and most structures were aluminum heavy wall tubing/pipe.

Ben had been Joshua's captain back when she was put in service as a long liner. The owner had captains and crew running 3 boats. Ben would long line for sword fish, in the Gulf Of Mexico and the Gulf Stream, only to return when the refrigerated hold was full.

These photos were taken in Pensacola a few years ago. Ben is doing fine and is still in love with his boat.

The pilothouse of this version is particularly functional. The steering is centerline, with excellent visability for all 360 degrees. There is no doubt that Ben likes his comforts....just look at this Helm Seat! Yikes! That is the way to go!

Ventilation is fine, with windows, overhead hatches and sliding doors offering plenty of options.

The engine room is below the pilothouse and accessible from the steps leading down from the port forward corner of the pilothouse. The engine is a 110 Yanmar-one of the newest. Also in this corner is a fold down berth just to port of the steering station adding a fine solution for some rest for captain or crew.

The galley is split across both corners of the aft pilothouse. You never have to leave sight of the controls or horizon, to cook or get a drink. It's clear that this is a work center.

Steps lead down into the aft cabin directly to a starboard nav station and port head. Cabinets, lockers and sleeping v berth are just a bit further aft.

Forward of the pilothouse is an aluminum enclosure for a genset and storage of gear essential on deck.


Dave Waltz used to put out the internet version at He and his wife Donna, cruised Caribbean waters on a Bottomliner 44 Bella Donna pictured here.

Of the 4 I have seen up close, this is the only one that has begun the Fish Hold conversion to living space.

For some extra historical information regarding this "fishing" version, read:

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