Washington boatyard expands shop and its market

Aliotti Enterprises in Bellingham, Wash., had two new gillnetters, the Anna Maria and the North Coast, working this year’s Bristol Bay fishery. It’s not unusual for new Aliotti-designed and -built gillnetters to be in Bristol Bay. What is noteworthy is the shop where Tom Aliotti’s crew is now building the Bristol Bay gillnetters. It’s still in Bellingham but instead of a 3,000-square-foot building, the new shop stretches to 30,000-square feet.
So, it’s not surprising that Aliotti says he’s “planning to build a lot more boats next year.”
That’s enough space to build six boats at the same time, and though Aliotti is known for his aluminum gillnetters, he says he wants to be “expanding into other markets, anything from 16 feet to 55 feet.” By the end of May, he had two gillnetters lined up for the 2020 season.
Those two gillnetters should be very much like the Anna Maria and the North Coast. Both measure 32′ x 15′ 6″ and have a pair 500-hp FPT EVO engines matched up to UltraJet 340 HT waterjets. Salmon will be held in 13 fish holds, each packing 2,200 pounds. Refrigeration comes from a 10-ton RSW Pacific West Refrigeration system.
Aliotti favors the twin jet arrangement for the increased maneuverability it gives a gillnetter. “Not a lot of Bristol Bay gillnetters have twin jets. A lot are going with a single TraktorJet,” he says.
With the FPT and UltraJet power package, the 32-footers get up to 40 knots when running empty. However, being able to run fast with an empty boat is not as important to Aliotti as a good turn of speed when a boat is loaded; after all, that’s what gets you to the dock to unload and back out hauling before the other guy. With 10,000 pounds aboard, the Anna Maria and the North Coast should get on step running at 29 knots. “With the right conditions,” says Aliotti, “they can get on step with 12,000 pounds.” With more than 15,000 pounds, the speed drops to 10 knots.
Aliotti should have a good opportunity to see how the Anna Maria and the North Coast perform since he’ll also be fishing Bristol Bay this year, as he has for more than 30 years.

About the author

Michael Crowley

Michael Crowley is the former Boats & Gear editor for National Fisherman.

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