Founder of Tribute boats, Rich Scheffer, Sr. was a “water rat” since a very young age, when spent most of his time on or around the water, learning all he could about boats and boatbuilding. Soon after his passion soared, Scheffer built his own commercial fishing boat to much acclaim by those surrounded by him. So much so, they wanted their own. In 1980, Scheffer took a job in Florida at Stuart Yacht Builders, at which point he met Jim Smith, the legendary tournament sportfish pioneer, who changed his life. Scheffer became the lead builder for Jim Smith for some years, and after Smith passed away, Scheffer decided to honor his mentor and open his owned shop; he called it Tribute. Scheffer created high-performance fishing boats that handled much like race cars. Many of his boats were built at over 70 feet, yet were able to maintain their speeds of 40 knots and above. Scheffer’s son Rich joined the team, as did his sons, and Tribute became a family business. The company dominates the center console with high-powered engines arena. Notable launches by the yard include the 61 TYPHOON, which still fishes in Costa Rica, the 63 SUMMERGIRL, the 70 HT HOOK, the 72 ALICAN, and the 72 DONAKEN.
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