Whittley SL25HT with 200hp Volvo Penta inboard

Whittley SL25HT with 200hp Volvo Penta inboard. Boat Test courtesy Steve Morgan - VIC Fishing Monthly Magazine
Every time I get into a boat that’s powered by a 240hp Volvo Duoprop, it brings a smile to my face.

Boat Test – Versatile Sharpcraft Scout 470 by SHANE SCHWARZ

Nick Sharp and I recently scored a lovely Autumn day down at Seacliff beach to test the latest Sharpcraft Scout 470. Nick is well into double figures with sales of the Scout 470 and justifiably so. The boat we used was actually built for Nick’s brother so it was great to see a fitout aimed specifically for fishing, however fit ups are often tailored to specific needs which is pretty unique in today’s world.

Savage Blue Water will take you offshore without breaking the bank

Savage has recently released a budget friendly offshore fishing machine perfect for tackling blue water conditions. The beauty of these boats is that they come at a great price point while you can still option up this model to suit your specific needs.

Haines Signature 575F Lockup Cabin with 150hp Honda VTEC – first class throughout

The appropriately named Haines Signature range, flagship of the Haines family’s stable of boat brands, was well represented by this stunning 575F Lockup Cabin.

Kiwi-built Surtees 6.7 Game Fisher defines offshore strength, fishing practicality

Five years ago (Issue No. 52) we tested a Surtees and our abiding impression, that of the boat’s sheer strength, was reinforced recently off The Bluff aboard this Surtees 6.7 Game Fisher open hardtop, powered by a very willing 225hp Yamaha 4-stroke. It was also good to catch up with Greg Wenzel again after all that time. He moved to join South Coast Marine this year and so continue his long and successful association with Surtees Boats of New Zealand.

Stunning Sea Jay 490 Vision with T-Top and all-new 90hp Mercury in-line 4-stroke

Our first test of a Sea Jay in the form of this very smart 490 Vision turned out to also be a first look at the new range of Mercury in-line 2.1 litre 4-strokes. Sitting proudly on its single axle Dunbier trailer in front of Adelaide Shores Marine, the 490 Vision featured a strikingly graphic and colourful “wrap”, Sea Jay’s optional “T-Top” and a sleek, compact 90hp Mercury 2.1 litre in-line 4-stroke.

Super-strong Stacer Ocean Ranger 679 with 225hp Honda a high performance package

Stacer didn’t try to hide the fact that their 679 Ocean Ranger was designed and built to attract the serious fisher, those seventeen standard rod holders being a real give-away. We noted three holders on each wide side deck, five on the big bait board and six on the hard top. Interestingly, those last six dropped down for easy loading and retrieval, then locked upright. Even the fold-down two person cockpit lounge was in on the act, with a 120cm scale etched into the seat.

Theodore 720 Offshore with twin Suzukis – the epitome of trailerable sophistication

Following our report in the last issue (No. 62 – June 2014), Jim Theodore and his team at Theodore Marine completed this first twin outboard version of the Theodore 720 Offshore Enclosed Hardtop in time the boat and fishing show in October. We got to test this new twin 150hp Suzuki 4-stroke variant recently off Outer Harbor and fortunately, had time enough to take in most of the customised features of what is (for now) Jim’s own boat.

Quintrex 440 Renegade S.C. with 50hp four-stroke Yamaha a first-rate fishing package

For decades, right around Australia, the name Quintrex has been synonymous with the “tinnie” class of small boats, but as evidenced by the remarkable little 440 Renegade S.C., this boat builder is clearly not one to rest on its laurels.

Sturdy, stylish Savage 435 Bay Cruiser with 40hp E-TEC an able inshore fishing partner

Any opportunity to test a member of the “tinnie” ranks is always welcome, such are the giant strides this “entry level” boating sector has taken in recent times, so we were therefore pleased to get to grips with this very smart Savage 435 Bay Cruiser.

Trailcraft 610 Trailblazer the last in captivity

Anyone looking for a big, strong fishing rig at a never-to-be-repeated price would have to inspect this 610 Trailblazer, the last brand new Aussie-built Trailcraft available in South Australia.

Haines Hunter 585 R Series fitted with a 4-stroke Yamaha is a compelling partnership

We were privileged last month to not only test this stylish, powerful Haines Hunter 585 R Series but also do so on the beautiful waters of picturesque Porter Bay at Port Lincoln.

Plate ali 425 Big Kahuna by Savage with 30hp 2-stroke Suzuki puts “fun” into basic boating

Make no mistake, for this strong, 3mm plate aluminium Savage 425 Big Kahuna is one tough customer, but bolt on a 30hp Suzuki 2-stroke and you have a compact, competent rig that is also a ton of fun.

130hp E-TEC powers Trailcraft 570 Sportscab

The combination of a rugged, powerful power plant fitted to a strong, rigid plate aluminium hull produced a very satisfying, “big boat” ride off Wallaroo recently.

Truly superb Evolution 552 X Series Platinum – very easy to admire and so very hard to fault

We conducted our first ever test of an Evolution craft recently, in this case a 552 X Series Platinum, built to order for a client of Broughton Marine and the experience was a real eye-opener.

Savage 485 Piranha CC – personality plus…

This Savage 485 Piranha CC (centre console) really impressed us with its clever layout, high feature levels and truly “fun” handling when we tested it in early April.

Superb Tournament double: 1900 Bluewater and this swift, strong 2100 Walkaround

To experience one model from the range of superb Tournament craft is a pleasure, but to be offered two recently proved to be a privilege. Our first test boat was a truly impressively presented, about to be delivered Tournament 1900 Bluewater, powered by a 150hp Suzuki 4-stroke and mounted on a dual axle Dunbier trailer.

Practical, personalised Savage 485 Piranha S.C. performs brilliantly, pleases the eye

It is always both a pleasure and privilege to inspect a boat that has been customised by its owner, as was the case recently when we met with David Hirst, for thirty years “the man” in upholstery and trimming in Goolwa, with his new Savage 485 Piranha S.C. (side console).

Stabi Craft 6.9 Super Cab on safety patrol at the Port Wakefield Prohibited Area

For over ninety years, the Proof Range near Port Wakefield has been used to test all manner of heavy weapons, historically leaving a large number of unexploded ordnance (UXO) lying in relatively shallow waters, which is why there is a prohibited area in force.

This 540 Trailblazer one heck of a package

Gunnings Marine has put together an awesome boating opportunity with this new Trailcraft 540 Trailblazer, built in WA in 2010, powered by a one-owner 90hp Mercury Saltwater outboard, with just 75 hours on the clock.