The Haines Signature 575RF fishing runabout is the Haines Group’s first all-new hull design since the passing in 2009 of ‘Senior’, the late John Haines OAM.
The Haines Group’s CEO, John Haines, has carried on his father’s tradition but has imprinted his own signature on the 575RF design with a finer bow entry, a small kicker or keel step just aft of the waterline contact point plus other hull changes.
Released last August, the design features plenty of cockpit fishing space and a relatively small cuddy suited for a sit-down or somewhere for the kids to sleep.
The 575 RF is a real angler’s boat yet the cuddy still offers dry storage, overhead shelving and space for a portable toilet. Access to the bow is simple, just swing out the windscreen centre section and the cuddy hatch. The anchor locker has a pad for an electric winch.
The 575 RF has a one-piece interior Nexus Liner, which is bonded to the hull and increases hull strength by up to 30% while allowing very easy clean-up after a busy day on the water.
The hull-motor package remains quite light, around 1900kg including fuel, allowing for ease of towing with a six-cylinder wagon or sedan.
In typical Haines Signature fashion, the test 575RF was impeccably finished and presented. Heritage shows here: this company has been making Signatures for almost 30 years, with refinement following refinement.
The test 575 RF came equipped with almost every bell and whistle available and a forest of rods bristled from the folding stainless bimini’s six holders. The full-height transom has a well-sealed door to port and when stepping aboard from the jetty, my feet remained dry – nice.
The Signature’s natty removable transom bait station comes with holders for drinks, rods, knife and pliers, a decent cutting board and a sink with a pressure tap.
The three-person rapid drop-down aft seat stows flat against the transom for active fishing and there’s easy access to the plumbed live-bait well in the starboard corner. Cockpit drainage is via an underfloor sump and pump.
The cockpit is loaded with features. A plumbed 200L fish box with dual lids sits in the floor just aft of skipper’s and mate’s pedestal seats and would handle even the most ambitious of catches.
The gunwales have recessed grab rails, there are two rod holders per side and 2.36m long side pockets have toe space below. A deck wash resides in the port pocket.
Tackle trays stack in the aft sides and a moulded-in tape measure is set along the port side pocket.
Above the port upper pocket are switches for the house battery, engine battery and there’s an emergency parallel switch as back-up.
There is LED lighting in the cockpit.
The heavy-duty forward seats slide and swivel and while seated the passenger has within reach a large side pocket and the insulated and drained glovebox, which doubles as an icebox for drinks and snacks. Naturally there is a passenger grab rail and a footrest.
The helm is a Haines Signature showpiece with twin Garmin GMI 10 multi-function gauges above a Garmin GPS Map 5012 screen.
The three-spoke wheel has switches, engine key and the side-mounted Suzuki controls within easy reach of the skipper, along with the marine radio and sound system. The skipper also has a footrest.
This 575RF had an Autotether man overboard wireless motor shut-off system which does away with the ubiquitous red lanyard – more smart technology.
The 2867cc V6 Suzuki 175hp was almost silent at idle and the 575RF planed away with three aboard at an amazingly low 7.3 knots (13.6kmh) at 2700 rpm. One could troll skirts at that speed in calm conditions and save a lot of fuel in the process. Likewise, in choppy going that slow plane would avoid a lot of throttle jockeying.
At 3000rpm the Garmin recorded 12.7 knots (23.6kmh) and at 4000rpm 23 knots (42.8kmh). At 5000rpm we were doing 31 knots (57.3kmh) and at 6000rpm a blistering 40 knots (74.4kmh). I see 4000rpm and 23 knots as a smart way to travel.
Performance was certainly lively and a real strong point. As we cruised into a 15-knot south-east breeze, input from the Bennett trim tabs became useful but it was a very dry and trouble-free ride all round. The bow sliced through chop cleanly, the plank under the hull and large reversed chines kept the Signature Variable Deadrise Hull perfectly on track.
At rest, given the relative lightness of the 5.7m hull, I was pleased to note little tendency whatsoever to lean.
As a specialised fishing craft, every desirable feature can be found in the Haines Signature 575RF. It’s strong, very well made and built to last – there’s a 10-year structural hull warranty.
The fish box, live-bait well and storage areas are large enough to be useful and the metre-high cockpit sides make this is one very safe offshore craft.
Driven sensibly, the 175hp Suzuki would return excellent fuel consumption although I would also consider 140hp power, so readily does this hull perform. And with 222L of fuel under the floor, there’d be a lot of cruising range.
The 575RF continues to show that those at the Haines Group pride themselves on turning out a top-quality product which sets standards for a lot of other Australian manufacturers.
On a Dunbier tandem trailer the test rig costs $78,000. To locate your nearest dealer call the Haines Group on 07 3271 4400 or visit www.thehainesgroup.com.au .
|Length on trailer||7.10m|
|Height on trailer||2.0m to top of windscreen|
|Towing||4WD or large six-cylinder|