HEL-CAT II, Groton, CT – 2005
Captain Brad Glas' 114-foot "HEL-CAT II" circa 2005. The Glas family started their party fishing business at Montauk, NY in 1946 and then moved to Groton, CT in 1975. The steel "HEL-CAT II" was designed and built by Captain Brad in 1985 and is the largest party boat in New England.
In 1983, they started construction of the boat on the family's property at North Stonington, CT. In the fall of 1984, they trucked the finished keel, frames, wheelhouse and stack to a small shipyard that had gone bankrupt at Jamestown, RI. At the shipyard, they put the frame together, installed the mild steel hull plating, installed two Cummins diesels, sandblasted and painted the hull, and launched the boat in June 1985.
After towing the boat to their dock at Groton, CT, they finished the deckhouse, got a crane to lift the wheelhouse and stack in place, finished all of the steel work, painted the now completed superstructure, installed the electrical and plumbing systems, and finished the propulsion system. (She spins a pair of 56" four-blade propellers via a 4.5:1 reduction gearbox and cruises at 13 knots while consuming a paltry 40 gallons of fuel per hour.) The "HEL-CAT II" ran her first trip with passengers aboard in late August 1985. The story of this boat's construction just goes to show that if you want something done right, do it yourself. Photo courtesy of Captain Brad Glas.