These Insane Boats Can Hit 45 Knots in Just Ten Centimetres of Water

By Brent Rose on at

Say you're a member of a search and rescue team. You get an alert that a kid is missing somewhere out there in your waterways, but the record-setting drought this year has left your rivers and streams impossibly shallow. Whatever. As long as you have ten centimetres of water, you're golden.

The ReconCraft Riverine Shallow Draft Vessel (RSDV), uses a uniquely designed hull-shape that essentially helps funnel water into its water-jet intake. This means the boat has an extremely minimal draw because it's sucking all the water it needs for propulsion right off the surface. Just 10 centimetres is all it needs. Not only that, it tops out at a very speedy 45 knots, which translates to 51.8 miles per hour. Dayum.

Outfitted with ReconCraft's new weed/debris grate, the RSDV can reportedly blast through most of the common stuff you'd find floating around after a flood or storm and not get clogged up. But it gets better. Is a big floating log blocking the way? Whatever, we'll just ride over that. How about a fully exposed shoal or gravel sandbar? Yeah, we'll jump that like some boat version of the General Lee, no prob.

The hull is made of reinforced aluminium and is painted with proprietary "Hardkor" coating that supposedly increases hull strength while reducing friction on contact points. There's also, "trade secret adherence techniques for ultra high molecular weight (UHMW) polyethylene to allow boats to slide across obstructions and barriers with little resistance".

ReconCraft sells these in five different models, ranging from 18 feet to 28 feet long, with cabins and without, and in all sort of other configurations and options. Certainly, these things are built ready to be militarised—it looks like law enforcement (and border patrol) is one of the primary markets—but I could see somebody using it to make the ultimate bass-fishing boat. [ReconCraft]