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    Why is the bulbous bow important?

Bulbous bows are important because they work. There’s a good reason you see them on cargo ships that need to be able to safely cruise through heavy seas while operating on razor-thin margins. So to put them on a pleasure craft just makes sense.

Here’s what they actually do: Bulbs at the forward portion of the hull mitigate the hobby horsing some boats experience as they rock over undulating sea states. The bows are cored with foam, and react like a basketball when you push one underwater. They don’t sink very far below the surface—like say after crashing down off the crest of a wave—and they push to float back to the top, creating lift. The effect is one of a smoother, less mal-de-mer inducing ride.

Bulbous bow designs also help with fuel efficiency. The longer bows help deflect water with less resistance, and also elongate the waterline, which, due to the laws of hydrodynamics, translate to better fuel-burn numbers both at displacement and semi-displacement speeds.

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