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TABS 5.1 Territory Pro
  |  First Published: November 2012



Manufactured on the Gold Coast, TABS Boats have been synonyms with building tough boats with anglers in mind and the 5.1 Territory Pro is no exception. With a 5.4m overall length and 2.35m beam, the 5.1 Territory Pro offers fishers the flexibility to comfortably fish the bay while still being able to run wide and fish offshore with ease.

Layout

The 5.1 Territory Pro has been designed for the angler. If you are after a boat with plenty of open deck space for throwing poppers or soaking a few baits and plastics then this boat is well suited.

Starting at the front the 5.1 has a huge carpeted anchor well that has heaps of room for plenty of rope and a couple of anchors. This allows fishers the option to carry a range of anchoring options without having to use underfloor storage.

Seating is comprised of four slide-in and -out pedestal padded seats, which give plenty of options for deck configuration. It allows for alternative positions for things like eskies and fishing gear, as well as different fishing options. Remove all the seats and you have the choice of opening up the whole deck to create a spacious uncluttered fishing space, which is ideal when chasing big fish like Spanish mackerel or GT that love to run all round the boat.

The aft of the boat is dominated by a 2m wide 1.4m long raised casting deck which offers a huge space for casting and sight fishing. Whether you are throwing 150g hammerhead poppers for big GT or 50g slugs for longtail, this deck gives plenty of room for a couple of anglers to cast their arms off without getting in each other’s way. Alternatively this is a great spot for gear such as BBQs, camping or day tripping gear for those family day’s out.

Underneath the raised deck is a dry storage hatch, which has ample space for safety gear and other items you want to store away. Below the casting deck is another dry storage hatch which incorporates an 80L 1.2m long esky, which comes standard with the 5.1, and is perfect for icing down a few Spanish mackerel.

The 5.1 is driven from a solidly built side console. The position of the console offers plenty of space to fish both in front and behind it with ease. The console offers plenty of space for gauges, instruments, sounders and GPS with plenty of mounting options. The test boat used the top of the console to mount the electronics that were comfortably protected by the perplex windscreen.

The Suzuki gauges were fitted into the dash and a switch panel was fitted nearer to the wheel to make for easy access when driving. Even though the test boat used the top of the dash there would be plenty of room on the front dash of the side console to flush mount sounders, GPS and radios if desired.

The height and position of the side console is better suited to a stand and drive position as it is a little far back and visibility can be a problem when seated, especially at speed. The side console also incorporated a sturdy side grip bar for when your decky prefers to stand up as well; passengers always comment on this as being one small but very positive feature.

Storage consists of two side open shelves that allow plenty of room for odds and ends and the depth of the shelves are perfect for storing gaffs, nets, and handlines. There is also heaps of storage available under the console without losing room for your feet when driving.

The rear of the boat consisted of a substantial platform and the test boat was fitted with an extra extended dive platform and stainless steel retractable dive ladder for easy access in and out of the boat. This is a great feature, especially if you love your snorkelling and diving, and the extended platform allows enough room for a single person to sit and gear up with flippers and goggles before heading underwater. This area also has another grip bar to help get up and down the dive ladder and platform with ease.

Ride

The Territory Pro uses a progressive 15º deadrise, which allows for a smooth and stable ride. This boat really eats up chop with ease, especially at speed and in rough conditions. During the test run we ran 40km wide to an outer island off Bowen in 15-20 knots of southeasterly and the boat and passengers did it comfortably at 35km an hour.

The Territory Pro tends to slice not slap through the rough stuff and this really does translates into a great ride. Running with the waves the boat also never breached at all, which is testament to its hull design.

Being an extremely open boat I expected the TABS to be fairly wet, especially in rough conditions, however the 680mm sides and full spray chines allow for a surprisingly dry ride. The high sides really do make you feel like you are in a considerably larger boat. The high sides provide a degree of safety that passengers notice and enjoy.

Build

The 5.1 Territory Pro was constructed using TABS PHD plate build; consisting of 3mm sides and 4mm 5083 plate bottom. The PHD construction option uses a north, south stringer system, which means the boat is supported longitudinally and a huge amount strength to the build of the boat. This is combined with 8mm cross bracing on all stringer to bulkhead joins.

The PHD model also uses a 10kg tongue and grove keel. This boat does not flex or twist when really put to the test. The extra weight from the PHD build really brings a lot of extra performance in terms of the ride, especially in rough weather. The hull’s solid construction was evident on closer inspection under the floor boards that showed just how sturdily built these boats really are – the level of stringer and bulkhead support is extensive. The armoured ply flooring is also above industry standard and you won’t have to worry about rotting floor boards.

Fishability

One of the aspects I really loved about this boat was the huge amount of deck space on offer. This boat will comfortably fish four to five guys bottom bashing with ample room for multiple eskies and all manner of fishing gear or dive gear. When the deep water reds have been running hot and fish are coming over the sides two at a time by four anglers, the open deck space in the TABS is a god-send as there is nothing to get in the way of the fishing!

Alternatively the front deck has to have one of the best GT popping platforms I have fished from and will easily accommodate a couple of guys throwing big stickbaits or poppers without feeling like you are being crowded for room.

At just under 2m wide (in the longest section) and 1.4m deep, it is an awesome space for popping and jigging and fighting fish from a raised position. I especially like the depth of the deck as it provides plenty of space when the GT are trying their best to pull you out the front of the boat!

The addition of the Minn Kota i-Pilot is an excellent option and the 5.1 comes standard with bow mount plate for ease of addition. The test boat was fitted with a 55lb model that performed quite well considering the size of the vessel and the i-Pilot easily held the TABs in spot lock even in hard running currents. However manoeuvring around was quite slow and the shaft was a little short in rough conditions.

On a great to average weather day the addition of the bowmount is an excellent feature, especially when trying to anchor over deep water or jig over baits schools.

The Territory Pro is well suited to offshore fishing when conditions suit, and it is just as at home out on the bay around the islands and even up the larger creeks and impoundments. It really is quite an adaptable boat for almost all fishing scenarios.

The only downside with the Territory Pro is the extremely high sides that make tail grabbing a tuna almost impossible, unless you have extremely long arms.

Performance

The TABS 5.1 Territory Pro has a minimum 90hp and a maximum 115hp range.

The featured boat was fitted with a 115 four-stroke Suzuki that pushed the boat along perfectly. It easily pushed the boat out of the hole and got up to cruising speed without the need for dumping the throttle wide open and the motor was dead quiet at idle. At 3000 revs the boat cruised along around 35km/h, 4000 around the 45km/h mark, 5000 at around 55km/h with the WOT pushing the boat around the mid 60km/h mark.

To be honest I thought the boat would be a little quicker; the 115hp was ideally suited to this boat but I think it would struggle a little with only a 90hp especially if you are at greater top end speed.

Manoeuvring the boat was a breeze and the hydraulic steering is extremely light making the hull particularly responsive. The Territory Pro comes standard with a 110L underfloor fuel tank, which provides plenty of range with the four-stroke to head out wide.

Details

The 5.1 Territory Pro was purchased from South Easterly Marine on the Gold Coast. Contact details are 0410 796 633 or email --e-mail address hidden-- . This package includes boat, braked trailer, and motor rego on boat, trailer. All TABS boats come standard with navigation lights, paint, and two pedestal seats.

BOAT PACKAGE 1

5100 Territory Pro, 90hp Suzuki (1500cc), Redco trailer, and Queensland rego and basic safeties. Priced from $36,640.

BOAT PACKAGE 2

5100 Territory Pro, 115hp Suzuki (1500cc), Redco trailer, and Queensland rego and basic safeties. Priced from $38,955.

Specifications

Boat make:TABS Boats
Boat Model:TABS Territory Pro 5.1 PHD
Boat Type:Side Console
Length:Overall 5.4m
Beam:2.35m
Hull Dead rise:15º
Person Capacity:5
Length on Trailer:7m
Hull Weight:680kg
Height on Trailer:1.8m
Optional Extra:Too many to list, check out www.tabsboats.com.au
Towing:Four wheel drive
Reads: 4142

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