1999 Donzi 28ZX
1999 Donzi 28 ZX equipped with Twin Mercruiser 350 Mag Engines (600hp) w/ 400hrs, Quick & Quiet Exhaust, Automatic Fire Extinguishing system, Anchor locker, manual bolsters, stainless-steel hardware, windscreen, compass, full Gaffrig instrumentation with color-matching bezels, Zero Effort controls, CD stereo with four speakers, Plexiglass door, Porta Potti, mirrored, electric engine hatch, hydraulic steering, recessed swim ladder, external tie bar, dual-ram trim tabs, New 4 Blade Stainless Steel Props, 94 gal. Fuel Tank, Microwave, Refrigerator/Freezer, T.V., Depth Finder, and newly painted Triple Axle Trailer (white w/ Stainless Steel fenders). Always stored indoors and is currently located at Lake Havasu.
When it comes to paint work, no production-boat manufacturer does it better than Donzi. To give the boat's black, red and gray color scheme atop premium gelcoat extra shine and luster, the manufacturer used Clearcote. The job of protecting the boat's exterior fell to a tough plastic rubrail with a rubber insert.
The stringers and transom for the 28ZX were made from polyurethane foam-no wood was used in the boat's construction. Like its smaller 26ZX sibling, Powerboat's 1999 Sport Boat of the Year, the boat was hand-laid with bi- and triaxial fiberglass and vinylester resin. In addition to coring the hullsides with Divinycell, the manufacturer vacuum-bagged the transom. Plexus adhesive was used to bond the hull, deck and liner.
Especially noteworthy in the boat's hardware was its "venturi" Plexiglaswindshield, which actually deflected wind. More standard fare included a nav night, an Accon Pop-Up cleat and an anchor locker on the nose, another Accon cleat on each side of the windscreen plus two more all the way aft, a sliding ladder on the integrated swim platform and a grab handle on the transom.
Twin-engine installations in 28-footers can give riggers fits; after all, two motors and all their accompanying hardware, hoses, cables and wires must fit into tight quarters. Under the screw-jack-raised engine hatch for the 28ZX, we found that two engines and all their accouterments can indeed find a neat and happy home in a boat this size.
Each small-block motor was installed on aluminum L-angles with gussets and heavy-duty brackets that were thru-bolted to the stringers and the standard transom assemblies. Color-matched diamond plate was installed on the sides of each motor-the screw jack was secured between them. All wire looms were run parallel, and the stainless-steel cushion clamps supporting them were aligned. Also aligned symmetrically, one on the outside of each motor, were the trim pumps for the drive. Both custom-fabricated battery boxes were color-matched to the compartment's gray and red interior. Combined with mirrors on the underside of the engine hatch, the overall neatness of the rigging created a look and feel of "extra" space, where no such space existed.
Behind an acrylic door that slid in upper and lower aluminum tracks, the cabin of the 28ZX was simple yet functional, even elegant. In addition to a large V-berth and facing lounges, there was a small galley area with a sink and a small cooler. Under the V-berth was a Porta Potti.
Of course, given the boat's performance, the cockpit was the place to be. Both the co-pilot and driver were supplied with manual drop-out bolsters, which Donzi manufactures. On the back of each bolster was a powder-painted grab handle for use for outside passengers on the four-person rear bench.
At the helm station to starboard, all the Gaffrig gauges were set in red bezels. In addition to the array of gauges, there was an Azimuth 1000 electronic compass and Gaffrig mechanical trim indicators for the drives and tabs.
By any designation, the 28ZX is an impeccably rigged, carefully constructed performer. Call it what you will-we'll just call it outstanding.
Think a twin-engine installation in a 28-footer has to be tight or cluttered? Think again-Donzi pulled it off in the 28ZX in a manner that puts most 38-footers to shame.