If you plan to enjoy the various lakes and rivers across the U.S. this summer, look out for the Seabreacher, an entirely new take on personal watercraft. In Translogic 45, Bradley hits the waters of Whiskeytown Lake in Northern California and attempts to master this man-made diving, jumping, motorized shark.
Although the Seabreacher can work below the water’s surface, it’s really not a submarine. Maximum diving depth is about five feet and if you dive too low or too sharp, the boat will just pop back to the surface – any deeper and the engine will stall due to lack of air. The large “fin” on top serves as a snorkel, supplying the jet ski-sourced engine with air, while aircraft-style inflatable seals help keep the cabin dry.
Power comes from a Rotax three cylinder, 1500cc, four-stroke engine. Its intercooled supercharger helps the engine to 260 hp and it’s the same mill used in many personal watercraft, allowing Seabreacher to source parts with ease. The engine includes an ECU similar to what you’d find on a modern passenger car to precisely manage power and fuel consumption, and also includes an integrated oil tank to minimize leaks as well as a patented oil separator that prevents oil from flooding the engine if the Seabreacher rolls over. The closed cooling system means the Seabreacher can be used in fresh or salt water.
To provide thrust, the Seabreacher uses an axial flow jet pump, meaning it takes in water through a low pressure inlet, uses an impeller to compress the water then pushes it out a nozzle that’s smaller than the inlet to create thrust. Top speed on the surface is 50 mph and 25 mph when below the surface.
The Seabreacher also includes a few gadgety features as well. The interior is fully upholstered and made to the buyer’s specifications. There’s also an on-board audio system with iPod connectivity and front and rear LCD screens that display images from the snorkel mounted camera.
To make sure the shark-looking submersible has a reasonable level of safety, the Seabreacher is fitted with a collapsible nose in case of a frontal impact, and the side wings have a breakaway design. The hull is positively buoyant and self righting so it won’t get stuck upside down or sink. If the Seabreacher becomes fully flooded it will still float, and there’s also an on-board fire extinguisher, three automatic bilge pumps and a carbon monoxide detector.
If you’re wondering how you can get your hands on a Seabreacher, you’re in luck. They’re for sale, but the price is a bit steep. Starting price is $65,000 and goes up to $85,000 for a high performance model, with a host of customization options available for the nautical connoisseur. Thankfully, the Seabreacher does not require a license to operate, but Innespace recommends becoming familiar with how a typical Wave Runner or power boat works before taking a Seabreacher out on the water, and claims it takes only a short time to master basic operation. Despite its radical design, most of the Seabreacher can be serviced or repaired at a typical marine shop.