Chase the barra in su­perb style

NT News - Motoring - - MARINE GUIDE - By CHRIS ERRITY

I have re­cently pur­chased a For­mosa 550 Tom­a­hawk hull, which I have found to be a sen­sa­tional boat for barra and blue-water fish­ing in the Top End.

At 5.7m over­all in length it is a great size that can not only han­dle off­shore con­di­tions with ease, but also is not too large to move around in the creeks and rivers.

I have had sev­eral trips across to Melville Is­land and it has per­formed ex­tremely well.

It is easy to fish from in the creeks with am­ple floor space and it per­forms well in the open ocean when punch­ing back to the boat ramp in a stiff 15-knot north­west­erly sea breeze.

The hull has an in­cred­i­ble beam of 2.45m and high sides (floor to gun­wale 670mm).

The 17-de­gree dead-rise hull and sides are con­structed of durable high-ten­sile 4mm alu­minium sheet and the hull fea­tures re­verse chines for bet­ter sta­bil­ity and a softer, drier ride in off­shore seas.

It also comes stan­dard with a self­drain­ing deck, raised sheer line and sporty-look­ing, fast­back tran­som fea­tur­ing a walk-through door and solid lad­der.

This boat comes with a cus­tombuilt cen­tre con­sole that takes up lit­tle room and al­lows the owner to move around it with ease.

It has a large, for­ward

cast­ing deck that not only has stor­age space for a 110-litre esky, but also has am­ple room to store safety gear and plenty of camp­ing gear if needed.

It also has a large self-plumbed kill tank and 200 litres of fuel un­der the floor, which al­lows for a con­sid­er­able range when trav­el­ling afar. I also have had spot­lights fit­ted on the bow for fish­ing and trav­el­ling at night.

This boat is pow­ered by an ex­tremely re­li­able 150hp four-stroke Suzuki mo­tor.

This mo­tor is per­fectly suited for this large hull and has plenty of power to lift the boat out of the hole.

It cruises at 50km/h at only 4400rpm and is ex­tremely eco­nom­i­cal with my trip com­puter show­ing fuel us­age of about 24 litres per hour at this speed.

The boat achieves a top speed of 70km/h when the mo­tor is opened up to 6000rpm and trimmed out.

To top it off, the boat has been in­stalled with a new Hum­min­bird 1198c SI sounder/gps combo with a mon­strous 10.4in screen.

This sounder with side and down imag­ing is easy to use and cer­tainly makes fish­ing for barra in the rivers and creeks much eas­ier.

The boat also has had a wrap in­stalled by Sign­tech, which has come up look­ing sen­sa­tional and cuts a fine fig­ure out on the water.

A sim­i­lar rig can be pur­chased from Qual­ity Marine for about $60,000. Give Theo Kos­midis or Harry Rakkas a call on 8947 2066.

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