Revival Boats are built in Melbourne by Sam Catanese, who is well known in the boat building industry, and his team of fibreglass crafters. With four decades of boat building experience behind each Revival, and Sam’s pride in his product, buyers can be assured they are getting a quality, no-nonsense powerboat that will stand the test of time, deliver as good a ride as possible and provide plenty of comfort for those aboard. Above all, Revival boats represent great value for money and always seem to be in demand; used models are snapped up soon as they appear on sale’s lists.
I was lucky enough to review one of the larger Revivals, the 580 Sports, out from Redcliffe recently (courtesy of Cunningham Marine). Not having been aboard one of these neat boats for some time, I was quite impressed with its features and performance at the end of the day.
The 580 Sports is the sort of boat that would suit dedicated anglers just as readily as more casual anglers seeking a roomy craft for the family, with provision for weather protection and plenty of storage. The 580 comes standard with a two-person bunk up front, and within the cabin there’s storage under the bunks as well as in overhead pockets. Big side windows dressed up the cabin, which offered access forward onto a beach or pontoon via both an opening section in the windscreen plus a large side-opening hatch atop the cabin. You could also access the anchor well this way (although the test rig had a power winch fitted).
The reviewed craft came with a variety of options. Some would please anglers, such as the large bait station aft, while other options promote comfort. One significant option for our climate was the Revival’s bimini plus a good set of clears, which saw Jake from Cunningham Marine and myself enjoying the time on the water while pretty well protected from our Queensland sun on a 35°C day.
Seating up front was courtesy of strong bucket-style seats. The skipper’s seat was on a pedestal, while the first mate’s was set on a neat moulding comprising a lockable storage compartment, an ice box at the rear and padding for an extra passenger. Cabin entry wasn’t impeded whatsoever by the seats, and they both had swivelling capability plus slide adjustment.
Instrumentation for the 115 Mercury 4-stroke astern was fairly comprehensive, with banks of switches and other items handy, close to the wheel. When seated at the helm I noted full visibility all round plus very easy monitoring of all gauges and instruments.
Aft seating saw a pair of well-made moulded seat boxes with neatly fitted padding atop them combining to provide a three-person bench seat at the transom. This set-up was quite flexible in that all aft seating could be removed for really heavy-duty fishing days, or moved to either side of the carpeted cockpit as a complete unit or as separate boxes.
The main items of angler interest within the cockpit were the full-length, soft-lined side pockets as well as padded sides up to the gunwales where recessed stainless grab rails were on hand as brace points. Under-floor storage compartments were also installed, and the drained rearmost one offered 110L of space.
With a well set up bait station and live bait well tucked into the starboard quarter of the transom, the big Revival was set up in fine style for keen anglers. Still, casual or family boaters are also catered for with an optional removable pedestal table that could be set up in proximity to the aft seating – very handy for a meal on the water.
To enter from astern via the craft’s ladder and boarding platform, you simply remove the dedicated section of the rear backrest. This allows an easy step into the cockpit via the aft seat.
Power ratings were from 90-175hp, which saw the 2.1L, 4-cylinder 115 Mercury 4-stroke as a fair way from top power, but very capable in every way. With two aboard the very smooth and remarkably quiet Mercury planed the craft at a modest 10 knots (19.2km/h) at 2750rpm. 3000rpm gave the rig a nice push along to 15 knots (27.4km/h), 4000 saw 22 knots (41.3km/h) on the GPS, 5000rpm a speed of 31 knots (57.3km/h) and 5600rpm a sizzling 36 knots (67.5km/h). With a 130L fuel tank I’d see some great cruising figures from the rig with that 115 on the transom.
Another thing I liked about the Mercury was the willingness of the engine right through the entire rev range, along with its quietness of operation at cruising speed. This craft really handles well, hence the ‘Sports’ designation.
As either a fishing craft or family runabout, the excellent ride and overall stability of the Revival’s 830kg hull must be a significant selling point. Due to its 20° vee linked to big reversed other chines, the 580’s 2.34m wide hull was very soft riding, while at rest it sat very steady with little inclination to lean even with two people on one side. Chop encountered during test runs proved the capability of the hull’s design to simply ride over rougher water without undue spray or significant impact. I’d certainly give the nod to the rig as an offshore fish hunter.
In summing up, I give the Revival 580 Sports test boat full marks as either an excellent family craft or one for the more dedicated anglers in our ranks. It’s a very comfortable all rounder with some nice touches in the form of the ice box, bunk infill and some very useful options. For the anglers, about the only option I’d require would be a deck wash for a clean-up when the fish are coming in. Towing with the family six or wagon would be very easy.
From Cunningham Marine of Clontarf, the reviewed craft with all options on an Oceanic trailer would come home for $53,990, although a basic package can start as low as $46,990. Cunningham Marine can be contacted on (07) 3284 8805 or 0411 121 032.
• Quoted performance figures have been supplied by the writer in good faith. Performance of individual boat/motor/trailer packages may differ due to variations in engine installations, propellers, hull configurations, options, hull loading and trailer specifications.
Price: from $46,990