From a local boat-building firm, Extreme is now in the front rank nationally, with a wide range of models and configurations on offer.
Thanks to strong marketing tailored to specific demands and a high-quality build, they have strong domestic sales and have developed a comparable export market in Australia, with a toehold in the Pacific Islands as well. Even in our present uncertain financial market, demand for their product has continued to expand, and they are currently building a new production plant near Whakatane.
Given a practical fish-and-dive design, robust construction and a high level of finish, one of Extreme’s strengths is style. Their boats look cool and up-to-the-minute modern, attracting a lot of attention at ramps and other places fishos gather.
With the surge in popularity of sport-fishing techniques such as soft-baiting, slow-jigging, mechanical jigging, surface lures and, to a lesser extent, fly fishing, has come a surge in interest in centre-console boats – in the northern half of the North Island especially, where the fish species and climate are conducive to this sort of thing. Consequently, the opportunity to test the centre-console version of Extreme Boat’s 570 model was not to be missed. Agent Murray Rowe, of Dargaville-based Northland Boating, organised a day out of Whangarei Harbour with 570 owner Richard Crum.
DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION
The 570 hull features a 5mm bottom, 4mm sides and deck, and a 5mm transom. The entry is fine, with no strakes on the hull, substantial downturned chines, and a 20° deadrise aft. Six fully seam-welded stringers run the length of the hull, with transverse frames supporting the sealed, 4mm chequerplate deck.
A feature of Extreme’s construction is a horizontal plate welded across the hull just above the keel. This forms a chamber that is triangular in section, running the length of the hull. It is left open at the transom and vents through the anchor-well at the bow. In addition to adding stiffening to the hull, this provides a passageway for water in and out of any under-deck holds and also acts as a self-flooding ballast tank. The keel canal fills with water when the boat comes to a halt, adding to the stability of the hull at rest, and drains instantaneously as the hull lifts onto the plane. Six buoyancy chambers provide reserve buoyancy of 458kg.
This is a very stylish hull, and its smart, rising sheerline also aids the downturned chines to keep the boat’s occupants dry.
POWER AND PERFORMANCE
The recommended power range for this hull is 90-150hp; the test boat was pushed by a Yamaha 115hp four-stroke, spinning a 17-inch pitch prop. We launched at Marsden Cove in Whangarei Harbour, and headed south along the coast. Conditions were good, with a 10-knot southwest wind and no more than a half a metre of sea. In a short speed test, top-end performance was 60kph (32.4 knots) at 5900rpm. Maximum ‘book’ revs for this engine are given as 6000rpm, so the 115hp outboard is a good power and prop match for this hull. The boat travelled softly, took very little spray in the conditions encountered, and was a pleasure to helm.
The centre-console configuration, by its nature, gives easy access to the bow area for anchoring, and the Extreme 570 Centre Console is no exception. It has a good-sized anchor well, bow rails, a crucifix bollard, and a short bowsprit. No anchor winch was fitted, as owner Richard mostly drift-fishes, but there is space for one if required. A sliding anchor float is another option.
The 570 features a sealed chequerplate deck with raised platform and under-deck hold in the bow. A padded seat set in front of the console offers another seating or stowage option. An up-stand lip around the seat top prevents water seepage into this area, but does make the squab construction a bit fiddly. Doubtless Extreme will sort this aspect. A hatch in the front of the console gives access to the wiring and steering inside, and there is good clearance for walking around the sides.
The console itself is the nerve centre of the boat. It has been slightly altered from standard in that the rake of the dashboard has been adjusted to suit the Lowrance HDS 10 sounder/GPS plotter. This last item features an add-on StructureScan unit (requiring an extra transducer), allowing side-scanning for structure as well as what is directly beneath the boat.
Other electronics include a Lowrance i-Pod docking sound system and Lowrance LVR 250 VHF radio. Engine instruments are Yamaha LCD, covering tacho, fuel and speed. Steering is hydraulic, and the console top also has a grab rail, foam-lined dash tray and throttle/shift behind the polycarbonate screen that offers shelter for two occupants. The lower section of the console incorporates a footrest and sheltered internal stowage. A fuel port in the side of the console feeds into an 80-litre under-floor tank. Overhead, a nicely constructed Bimini top gives a bit of shade and also mounts Narva LED floodlights facing forward and aft, along with aerials and a five-position rocket launcher.
Helm seating is an optional bench seat with an internal dry-storage locker, reversible rolled backrest and space underneath for a chilly bin that can store a reasonable catch. A central under-deck hold in the stern adds further stowage options, as do two-metre shelves along each side. A wash-down hose is also built in.
The transom wall houses start and house batteries in a locker. The hatch folds down to form an optional bench seat. A transom step-through has a drop-in door and live-bait tank built into it. At the stern, a large chequerplate boarding platform features a fold-down ‘T’ ladder and grab rails. Two cleats complete the stern.
Fishing is what centre consoles are all about, the full walk-around capability being a great boon when playing fish, and also opening up a lot more fishing space in a small boat. This is of particular benefit with fishing styles that involve casting, such as fly-fishing, throwing surface lures like poppers or stick-baits, or soft-baiting and spin-fishing. The price paid is less shelter from the elements and spray for the occupants, but many fishermen feel this is a worthwhile trade-off, most especially in the warmer waters of the north.
In a boat with a configuration that encourages standing up and walking around, stability and good footing become important, and the keel ballast chamber and chequerplate decking of the 570 answer these needs.
Fishing fittings include two rod holders in the bow, six around the sides, and two more on the bait-station, in addition to the five-position rocket launcher on the Bimini top. The bait station includes a removable cutting board (for easier cleaning), overboard ‘gunk’ drain, knife slots, and two upholders. As mentioned, a live-bait tank is built into the transom step-through.
Although the boat is also used for skiing and general boating, Richard and his family love fishing, with soft-baiting a firm favourite over the last couple of years. The 570 Centre Console was chosen with this in mind. Soft-baiting is one of my favourite forms of fishing too, so with the photo-shoot in the bag, the sight of diving birds a mile or two from the Whangarei entrance was not to be ignored.
It was one of those red-hot days when your lure is getting nailed every cast. It was not long before we had a decent catch of snapper in the chilly bin, while fish of up to five-kilos were being returned to go about their business.
The Extreme proved to be an excellent boat to fish from, and we both had a ball. Honestly, the things I have to do for you readers!
Extreme Boats normally supply their boats on trailers of their own manufacture, but in this case the owner, Richard, specified an Enduro trailer built by Andrew Fink. This is a cradle A-frame design built in 100 x 50mm box-section. It has sealed cross-members, is galvanised inside and out, and has an internal freshwater flushing system built in, all designed to minimise corrosion problems.
The trailer is a single-axle model with leaf-spring suspension, tricked up with a nice set of mags and extra-wide tyres for beach launching. The trailer features: six pairs of wobble rollers per side plus keel-entry roller; a board walk; galv steel wheel guards; a spare wheel; dual-ratio manual winch; submersible LED lights; wind-down jockey wheel; and dual coupling.
Tow weight was given as 1200kg, dry and empty.
The Extreme 570 Centre Console looks very cool, is well constructed with a high level of finish, is excellent to fish from, travels well on the water, and can be towed relatively easily. What a great day boat for sport fishing – I loved it!
- Material: aluminium
- Configuration: centre console
- LOA: 5.75m
- Beam: 2.22m
- Bottoms: 5mm
- Sides: 4mm
- Transom: 5mm
- Deadrise: 20°
- Reserve buoyancy: 458kg
- Recommended power: 90-150hp
- Test engine: Yamaha 115hp four-stroke
- Prop: 17-inch
- Fuel: 80 litres underfloor
- Trailer: Andrew Fink-built Enduro
- Tow weight: 1200kg approx.
- Basic key-turn package: $58,000 (with 90hp
- Merc Optimax)
- As tested: $66,752
Test boat courtesy of Richard Crum and Northland Boating.
NZ Fishing News
written by Sam Mossman