Toma Flybridge Top and Windshield

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A Japanese company plans to showcase its improved retractable flybridge windshield and top Sept. 28-30 at the International BoatBuilders' Exhibition and Conference in Louisville. Marubishi Seisakusho is seeking U.S. yacht manufacturers and dealers to offer its Toma Flybridge Top and Windshield.

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The windshield slides into a curved, aerodynamic top. Previously, the company offered only a manual version of the system, but has now added a motor to make it easier to raise and lower the windshield. "Boaters don't have to wait for perfect weather to use their boats," says company president Seizo Tomatsu, who developed the patent for the product. The windshields are customized for each yacht. The tops are made out of a fabric called Ultramax, which is fitted over a stainless-steel frame. A dealer in Japan would pay about $16,000 for a Toma that would fit a 42-foot yacht, says Hal Offutt, a consultant for the company in the United States. Shipping costs to the United States can be reduced substantially with orders of multiple Toma units (10 or more), says Offutt. "In the long run, the Toma should probably be produced under license in the U.S.," he says. Contact: Marubishi Seisakusho Co. Ltd., www.toma-awning.com/en, or Hal Offutt, (330) 721-2633.

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