Work­mate to fish­ing mate

NT News - Motoring - - NEWS - By PHIL POMEROY Con­tin­ued page 19

THE new Sur­tees range of al­loy-plate boats was on dis­play at last month’s Dar­win Boat Show.

One of the boats at the By­ron Hazell Ma­rine stand was the 6.1 Work­mate. Sur­tees boats are the real thing and have the back­ing of al­most 30 years of top-qual­ity work­man­ship in a fac­tory Whakatene in New Zealand.

They build a range of plate al­loy boats from 4.7m to 6.1m.

Stand next to the 6.1 Work­mate, which is on an Oceanic tan­dem axle trailer, and it is easy to see it is a tough, no-frills boat.

Built with 5mm plate sheet bot­toms, 4mm plate sheet sides and 3mm fully welded floor, this boat is built to last and in the real world, built to fish.

Walk around to­wards the tran­som and this is where the good bits start.

A large duck­board is welded into the hull, and sit­ting on the tran­som is the lat­est Honda BF 115AK1 four-stroke en­gine.

On this duck­board is the fold­ing board­ing lad­der and ber­ley bucket.

The main fea­ture of all Sur­tees Boats is their se­cret weapon, the self­flood­ing bal­last tank.

This is a sim­ple yet ef­fec­tive de­sign.

When a Sur­tees boat comes to rest, this bal­last tank floods with wa­ter and with this ex­tra weight it set­tles the boat deeper into the wa­ter giv­ing greater sta­bil­ity when at rest, even in rough con­di­tions.

Should the weather turn sour out at sea, com­ing home can be a very daunt­ing ex­pe­ri­ence.

So be­fore mov­ing, a sim­ple re­lease of a cord at the stern will re­lease a seal­ing flap and will keep this wa­ter bal­last in the tank, and will give a softer, sure-footed trip home.

Once back into smoother wa­ter, pull the flap up and the bal­last drains.

There is an amaz­ing amount of room to fish in this boat.

At the tran­som end there is a kill tank un­der the floor, great for bleed­ing fish and then get them on ice.

I also love the seat­ing ar­range­ment.

Up front are two seats which can be folded down giv­ing a lot more room when it comes time to go fish­ing.

We put this boat in at East Arm and there was more than enough room for the three of us.

The in­stant re­sponse from the Honda 115hp

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