Valhalla V-46 Customized as Superyacht Tender

Sep 26, 2022 | Magazine, News, Valhalla Boats | 0 comments

With an unwavering commitment to excellence and customer satisfaction, Viking Yachts and their center console brand Valhalla Boatworks, are no strangers to custom requests from discerning owners. Their abilities to provide beyond the standard features for their yachts and center consoles and willingness to integrate components not on the options sheet does have some limits, but they are rarely reached. When an experienced yachtsman and repeat Feadship owner and his superyacht charter operator approached Bluewater and the Valhalla team with some special requests for a Valhalla V-46, they were happy to oblige.


With the help of Bluewater Sales Professional Connor Hall, hull number 22 of the new Valhalla V-46 was ordered to become a fully-optioned tender for a large, high-end charter operation that spends her summers in the Mediterranean and her winters in the Caribbean. The size of the V-46 would guarantee an exceptional experience for guests when island hopping, exploring and running ashore, but also negate the option of storing the boat aboard when not in use, as the many other toys are on the 55-meter (180-foot) mothership. A need for towing the boat behind the mothership is what began the discussion of several unique customizations with Valhalla.

Captain Gareth Suckling and Connor Hall
Captain Gareth Suckling poses with
Bluewater’s Connor Hall.

An Eye for Safety

The first item on the list is a custom towing eye for pulling the boat unmanned behind the mothership. Extra reinforcements were applied in this area of the bow to ensure a secure attachment under load and in nearly any sea condition. The space immediately around the tow eye includes integral stainless steel plates to guard the hull against the shackle and towline rubbing.

Another unique addition is a windlass mounted on the stern of the boat. John Leek IV, Valhalla Boatworks Manager, explains, “the stern windlass was an interesting customization that is specific to their Caribbean use, in order to tie up to sandbars and islands for swimming and snorkeling.” The installation involved a custom anchor fairlead on the integrated swim platform situated outside of the starboard engine. “What we refer to as the transom bustle—or more familiar, the engine bracket and swim platform—provided enough space for the anchor fairlead to run out to the side,” Leek says.


For those Caribbean winters spent snorkeling and diving, the standard portside dive door with integrated, collapsible boarding ladder was further upgraded with a custom boarding handle to help guests to enter and exit the water more easily. The Valhalla engineering team did well to plan these upgrades and customizations into the build process, allowing the production team to maintain their efficiency. Leek states, “It took a little extra time at the end of the production line, but we were able to complete all the customizations here in Mullica.”


Prepared for any Pond

Viking’s partner and subsidiary, Atlantic Marine Electronics (AME) was brought on for additional systems installations to maintain communication between the mothership and tender when in operation and while unmanned. AME Sales Manager, Chad Clarke explains, “We installed a GOST Evolution security system to provide satellite tracking and two-way communication with the mothership.” Clarke says working with the GOST system is familiar to his team, but the addition of a mothership and two-way communication necessitated working with GOST representatives to learn what components would best accomplish the tasks at hand.

ame Logo
In addition to the communication part of the security system aboard the Valhalla V-46, they also installed high water alarms in the bilge areas and a door sensor for the dive door that would alert if the door became unlatched or opened while in tow. Around-the-clock satellite tracking of the V-46 will allow the captain and crew of the mothership to know almost immediately if something goes awry with this massive tender.
Although the GOST Evolution system and required navigational lighting for vessels under tow are designed to be energy efficient, the owner requested solar panels be installed on the hardtop to ensure the batteries remain charged while under tow. “Travel plans for this superyacht charter operation include transiting the Atlantic for a few days in a row and the tow lights and GOST could drain the batteries if not for the solar panels,” Leek says.

The V-46’s power was optioned at 1,800 hp, thanks to a triple configuration of Mercury’s latest high-output V12 outboards, rated at 600 hp each. After taking delivery of their customized yacht tender, the captain in charge of the yacht’s toys wintered the V-46 in Palm Beach in preparation for a summer on the Chesapeake Bay while the mothership runs charters in the Mediterranean. Once the superyacht returns to the Caribbean next winter, her newest toy will officially join the fleet, allowing all her impressive features and customizations to be utilized by Captain and crew.