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The 30-foot Freedom 307 is an “evolutionary step up” for dual console boats, creating a new category of big, saltwater tough coastal cruiser/family fishing boats. The 307 is a roomy, versatile, great performing inshore or offshore cruiser with amenities and comfort to spare. Seating is second to none in comfort.
GradyWhite Freedom 307 (2015)
The GradyWhite Freedom 307 has a LOA of 30'6'' (9.30 m), a beam of 10'7'' (3.23 m) and a draft of 22'' (0.56 m).
The Grady-White Freedom 307 is a big dual console boat built on a proven hull by a veteran manufacturer. It is an upscale day boat with fishing, cruising, watersports and entertaining capabilities. She is one of 9 dual consoles that Grady-White offers in its Freedom Series and is intended specifically for people who either want to venture offshore for fishing or to handle a large number of guests for day-boating activities.
The major features of the GradyWhite Freedom 307 dual console can be seen in this drawing.
Styling. The bow has a recessed anchor that launches through the stem keeping the foredeck uncluttered and mud off the deck. Low profile bow rails along the forward seating area do not interrupt the smooth sheer line which has a smooth sweep that has a family resemblance to the fishing machines in the GradyWhite line, but is not as exaggerated as seen in some models. The tall windshield rises at a practical angle and side glazing keeps the captain and navigator dry. Her contrasting cove stripe is all Grady-White -- its signature styling.
GradyWhite has carefully selected these five additional hull colors to reduce maintenance while still adding sizzle to the boat’s hull. All except the Harbor Blue will not show much salt after a hard day’s run in the briny.
Hull Colors. For years Grady-White gloried in its standard unique off-white color (“Classic GradyWhite”) but now the builder offers a choice of seven hull colors for the Freedom 307 -- four are in the gel coat and three are paint.
Which is better, gel coat or paint? We suggest that boaters select the color that they like best regardless of the color medium. However, paint will keep its high-gloss longer, require less maintenance and is generally easier to repair.
GradyWhite Upholstery. Grady-White uses an off-white, almost cream colored upholstery.
Other features that the Freedom 307 has that add to her utility and are standard equipment include—
• Anchor windlass with remote control
• Cockpit shower
• Stand-up headroom in port compartment
• Fuel capacity 234 gallons (886 L)
• Hydraulic trim tabs
• Windshield washer
• Water tank capacity 32 gallons (121 L)
Dual Console Design
Regular readers know that we have long championed the dual console design concept because of its utility and family comfort aspects. Further, we tend to be partial to dual consoles built by companies with a fishing boat heritage as they tend to be “saltier” looking, as opposed to the ones built by sportboat companies which tend to be tarted up with lots of bling and eye wash. Grady-White has long known of the advantages of large dual consoles with fishing boat DNA and keeps its boats looking like boats, not sports cars on the water.
Grady-White uses the “Freedom” designation to denote its “dual console” series. The Freedom 307 was the first of the large dual consoles in the Grady-White line up, but now there are two larger Freedom models – the 335 and the 375.
Advantages of a “Dual Console”. The “DC” design is a natural for family boating, with cushioned seating from the bow lounge seats, through to the helm deck to the stern’s fold away bench seat.
The Freedom 307 has twin bench seats with port and starboard recliners. Note the access to the anchor locker, the base for the pedestal table, and the seat backs.
The helm seat is for two, each with its own bolster. The seat is electrically actuated as standard. Note the twin foot rests for leaning and sitting comfort.
The port companion seat is also doublewide and can accommodate two adults. This is an unusual feature and is rarely found on boats in boats of this class.
Seating. Grady-White has refined the Freedom 307 with double-wide seats for two both at the helm and to port behind the console and windshield. That means that four pairs of eyes can be facing forward on the helm deck to help with piloting. The helm seat can be adjusted electrically, something that is unusual in class even as an option, but it is standard on the 307.
Note that the port seat pulls out to make a chaise for sunning. Move the seat forward and it makes a spotter’s seat or a comfortable place for sitting while trolling and watching the baits.
On the starboard side of the cockpit, the Freedom 307 has the option of blowing out the standard wet bar and replacing it with an optional aft facing seat that pulls out to create a sunning chaise.
Behind the companion seat is an electro-mechanical convertible lounge seat that can be either aft-facing or flattened into chaise. In this way the seat can serve as an aft-facing seat used to spot a skier or for an angler to keep an eye on trolling baits.
The standard aft foldaway bench seat accommodates two or three people and is probably the most comfortable place on the boat for lubberly guests.
Safety First. Grady-White has always put a premium on safety in its products. The cockpit is self-bailing. All Grady-Whites have “basic flotation” that makes them unsinkable, and means that some part of the boat will float above the surface of the water if the boat is swamped or turns turtle.
High quality 316 grade stainless steel grab rails can be found at convenient places where they are needed most. While the grab handles are required by ABYC standards, 316 stainless is not and it is the best marine grade stainless on the market. All storage boxes and wet areas drain overboard rather than into the bilge.
Fishing Heritage. Many people think of Grady-White as a fishing boat brand and for good reason. The company’s roots are deeply grounded in fishing. Grady-White was a pioneer of large offshore center console fishing boats and their popular walk-around cabins revolutionized what a cabin fishing boat could do. Even today the majority of Grady-White’s products are tailored to hardcore, discriminating fisherman.
The optional 32 gallon (121 L) livewell is located in the port quarter at the transom.
While the Freedom 307 is foremost a family boat, she can still hold her own at fishing. Rod holders and cockpit toe rails are standard while a lighted and insulated 32 gallon (121 L) raw water livewell is an option. Fold the seats away and the cockpit becomes large, uncluttered and can accommodate three or four fullsized anglers. A lighted 251 quart insulated fishbox in the transom holds a limit and then some.
Equip the Freedom 307 with the optional outriggers, topmount rod holders, and a livewell and she is one seriously comfortable and capable fishing machine.
Grady-White is one of the most powerful brand names in the boating industry. The company has been in business for over 50 years but much more impressive is that it has had the same owner since 1968 – Eddie Smith, for years a leading figure in the American boating industry. Much of the management team, a good portion of the factory staff, and a long list of Grady-White dealers have been with the company for 20 years or more. This level of consistency is rare in the boat business – particularly in saltwater fiberglass fishing boat brands -- and has given the brand stability to focus on building the high-quality boats and providing good, consistent customer service.
Grady-White is a proud company that encourages customers to visit its factory prior to a purchase.
The Freedom 307 is built on GradyWhite’s timetested SeaV2 hull. The continuously variable deadrise angle provides a soft cushion in a head sea and throws spray flat to the sides.
Grady-White’s patented SeaV2 hull was the product of the naval architecture firm C. Raymond Hunt Associates. Its bottom shape is a variable V-hull which is sharp forward and flatter at the transom. Key traits of the hull are that it rides soft into a sea, holds plane at relatively low speeds, and is a good compromise between ride and fuel efficiency. The design has been in place on all Grady-Whites since 1992.
Form and Function. The Freedom 307 is a day boat built for full family function, including entertaining. Thoughtful factory options can focus the 307 on how owners plan to use their boat. For example, the standard wet bar behind the helm seat comes with a freshwater sink and three deep storage drawers. But if entertaining is the goal, an electric grill can be added as well as a refrigerator instead of the standard drawers.
The starboard wet bar with the optional grill and refrigerator add entertaining functionality aboard the Freedom 307.
There is a small cabin space in the port console with a standard marine head, holding tank and sink. A fold down berth offers a quick spot to lie down. The berth is large enough for one adult. A 3,500 BTU air conditioning option can be ordered for the cabin. The air conditioning, grill, and refrigerator all require a shore power connection, unless a generator is fitted.
The cabin in the port console of the Freedom 307 holds a marine head with holding tank. A fold down berth offers a quick spot to lay down below decks. The cabin can be equipped with air conditioning.
The optional ski pylon fits abaft the transom fishbox in the outboard well.
Watersports activities are easily accomplished from most dual consoles, and the Freedom 307 is no exception. To starboard is a transom gate that leads to a small platform with a 4-step re-boarding ladder. From here watersports activities can be launched. An optional ski pylon fits in the outboard well (see image above). A freshwater shower is located conveniently in the transom.
An optional filler cushion in the bow creates a huge sun pad play pen for sun worshipers.
The Freedom 307’s helm is large and comfortable. The cushioned helm seat is wide enough for two and adjusts forward and back electrically. Note the two foot rests in the console. The stainless steel windshield header is optional.
The helm is roomy with convenient electronic adjustment control and switch placement. The seat is electrically adjustable forward-reverse and offers a flip-up bolster to lean against while standing, and a
broad cushioned seat while sitting down. The wide dash can easily accommodate two (2) 12” electronics displays. The boat’s deck is a single level from bow to stern with no step up to the helm. Visibility at the helm is good over the low profile bow seating and rails and the windshield header is high so that it is not at eye level when the captain is seated.
Power and Performance
Grady-White boats are equipped exclusively with Yamaha outboard engines. The two brands have enjoyed a long and successful relationship and Grady-White was instrumental in helping Yamaha establish itself three decades ago as reliable offshore power. The Freedom 307 is a twin engine boat and can be configured with twin 4-stroke 250, 300, or 350 horsepower engines.
Speed and Fuel Consumption. We have not tested the Freedom 307 but the folks at Grady-White and Yamaha have. Their testing has shown the three engine options to be very close in fuel economy with the big difference being in cruise speed and top end. Overall, the twin 4.2 liter six-cylinder F300 engines seem to be slightly more fuel efficient at best cruise getting 1.58 statute miles per gallon at 3500 RPM going 27.9 mph. Top speed with the 4.2 L 300-hp Yamaha is reported to be 50.2 mph.
An interesting detail of the factory testing was that the 4.2 L 250-hp outboard combo actually had a lower mpg number at best cruise getting 1.51 mpg at 3500 rpm going 25.4 mph. This rig’s top speed is said to have been 46.8 mph.
2 x 350hp? The twin 5.3 L 350-hp Yamaha rig drives the Freedom 307 at 58.1 mph according to the factory tests and got 1.54 mpg at 3500 rpm going 32.2 mph. The rig weighs 252 lbs. more than the twin 4.2 L power plants.
A choice of twin Yamaha outboard engines power the Freedom 307. The integrated bracket provides a stable platform for entering the boat from the water. The insulated transom box can hold fish, iced beverages, or can be used as dry storage.
DrivebyWire. All of the engine options are equipped with fly-by-wire controls meaning that engine power is controlled electronically. The controls are smooth and responsive. Just one key is needed and each engine has a push button start. The Yamaha Command Link Plus gauge is a single LCD screen that provides all of the engine’s vitals: rpms, miles-per-hour, fuel gauge, fuel burn, engine hours, battery voltage, and more.
Joystick Option. Another option that takes docking to the next level is Yamaha’s new Helm Master joystick control. This configuration allows the engines to move independently and push the boat in any desired direction.
A bow thruster is also available. With either the Helm Master or the bow thruster, docking is easy.
A Remarkable Cockpit
One of the advantages of the Freedom 307 is that it has lots of deck space, thanks to the Grady-White DNA. On many sportboats 30’ and under, deck space is at a premium because the boats have L-shaped lounges, entertainment centers and large sun pads on the stern under intrusive engine boxes. The Freedom 307 has one of the most versatile cockpits on the market because not only is its aft bench seat a fold-away type but the port aft-facing seat is also convertible into a chaise.
With an electromagnetic motor effectively transforming a chair into a couch it meets up with the transom bench seats and “voila” an L-shaped lounge is formed. In just under a minute and with one hand of effort the cockpit can be transformed into a cozy entertaining area for cocktails, dining or just convivial sightseeing. Adding to the utility of the Freedom 307 is her beam of 10’7” (3.23 m), one of the widest beams in class.
The aft facing port seat on the Freedom 307 extends on an electromagnetic motor. It meets the aft flipup seat, converting the area from an open cockpit to a comfortable Lshaped lounge. The wet bar is at right out of the picture.
Dodging the Weather
Here the Freedom 307 once again shows versatility as the large walkthrough windshield can be shut, along with a solid door beneath that locks in place, protecting the bridge from chilly weather and spray. The optional front and side isinglass drop curtains can also be deployed for top to bottom three-sided protection. For those that need it, an aft drop curtain is also available.
The Sureshade option on the Freedom 307 extends the shade from the hardtop all the way to the transom. It operates electrically, deploying and retracting from a switch at the helm.
Made for the Shade. The Freedom 307 has an optional Sureshade retractable canvas option. Powered by an electric ram, the retractable Sunbrella canvas deploys at the push of a button, effectively extending the hardtop to the stern and shading the entire cockpit. The Sureshade is quite durable and can be left in the extended position at speed in most cruising conditions.
When it comes to large dual consoles, Grady-White was way ahead of the industry. As a result, it has had time over the years to refine the concept of a multi-use offshore vessel in this size range. The Freedom 307’s innovative convertible cockpit is a good example of that evolution. By carefully selecting the options boaters can outfit the boat specifically for their applications.