The sturdy, Gold Coast-built TABS 5.70m Ocean Series Cabin is a beamy offshore plate-alloy cuddy ideally suited to taking two or three mates offshore or cruising calm water with the family.
This boat is wonderfully finished. The paint job is first-class, a brilliant, gloss that appears extremely tough. The eye-catching finish continues throughout. right down to the TABS upholstered helm seats, aft bench and beautifully finished carpet.
The TABS 5.70m Ocean Series is built to handle tough conditions and the toughest of owners. The bottom is 5mm plate, the sides 4mm plate and computer-engineered underfloor reinforcing and full welds make for one very durable vessel.
The Ocean Series in the TABS range starts at 5.0 metres and goes up to 6.5 metres, with the 5.7 the middle child of the family. With a healthy beam of 2.5 metres, it easily caters for the six person capacity rating.
There’s a truckload of standard features, including transom door and the deluxe ‘whale tail’ transom with boarding platform which provides brilliant access through the optional stainless steel boarding ladder.
The extra-large, carpeted anchor well makes for easy storage of ground tackle for reef and sand. The fully-welded gunwale sand side decks make you feel very safe underway and at rest.
Access to the foredeck is through a forward hatch which can be opened from inside and out.
A good ergonomic steering wheel complements the very comfortable helm seats that can be adjusted for height and fore and aft to suit almost every size of skipper.
The speed, trim and rev gauges are well-positioned and easy to read but the six-gang switch panel was tucked away to the right of the wheel and pretty low. It would have been nice to see this in a more visible position. I’d also opt for gauges for fuel and battery voltage. With a 180-litre fuel tank you would be able to cover some serious water, so it would be very handy to know how much is left in the tank for the trip home.
The curved windscreen is at a good height and affords good visibility and protection from the elements.
The skipper and companion seats are mounted on welded pods with good storage underneath and padded, aft-facing seats rest at the rear of each pod. The fold-down rear bench has a well-positioned back support.
Good-sized side pockets provide storage along with the huge bins under the bunk benches in the cabin.
The test boat was equipped with a Suzuki 115hp four-stroke motor with a standard 15” prop.
This neat-looking power plant had plenty of grunt. When idling, you have to look twice at the motor and instruments to see if it’s running.
The boat took little effort to get more than 850kg of beefy hull on the plane and it cruised comfortably at around 45km/h at 4000rpm.
In the calm waters of the Camden Haven River she easily clocked out to 65km/h, peaking at 6200rpm. When we ventured outside on a small northerly swell with a little chop, the Ocean Series lived up to its name, working effortlessly to maintain around 45km/h.
In tight figure-eight work the boat handled very well and comfortably negotiated very tight turns at cruising speed, all the while with a very smooth ride.
Even when fully fitted with the necessary fishing gear and a few anglers, this boat should still have excellent speed and acceleration – very handy when crossing a bar.
With a maximum rating of 175hp the 5.7 Ocean Series would fly. Rob from Camden Haven Marine assured me that the new Suzuki motors were great on fuel and TABS was proud of the fuel-efficiency of its hulls – well worth considering with the current price of petrol.
The big outfit sat on a Redco RE180MO trailer with a braked multi-roller system for easy launching and retrieving. At a gross mass of 1450kg, this rig requires a pretty hefty vehicle to pull it in and out of the water and for general towing. Rob had a medium-sized 4WD which handled the job well.
Some of the optional features in the test boat included a stainless steel targa/rocket launcher and canopy and an ample plumbed live-bait tank.
When you need a rest from fighting the big ones the cabin has plenty of space with two large, upholstered bunks with abundant storage underneath and enough room for all your tackle.
The TABS 5.70 Ocean Series is a tough, reliable offshore fishing boat that looks good and handles beautifully and should offer security and comfort for three anglers offshore.
At rest the 5.70 TABS Ocean Series was very stable making it easy to fight and land that big fish with the transom door and boarding platform making it even easier. Overall this is a sound fishing vessel and well worth consideration.
TABS 5.70m Ocean Series
|Length on trailer||7.10m|
|Weight (hull only)||840kg|
|Transom:||Extra long 25”|
|Max transom weight||220kg|
Transom door, side rails, bow rails, bow sprit, 2 side pockets, battery and oil bottle tray, double bow eye, navigation lights, anchor light, bilge pump, battery box, isolator switch, 2 transducer brackets, spray chines, 2 cross bollards, 1 cleat on foredeck, 2 fully upholstered seats, underfloor fuel tank with sender unit, seat pedestals with seats, painted white hull & stripes, 4 plastic rod holders, 6 gang switch panel, carpeted anchor well, fully carpeted floor, underfloor flotation, fully welded gunwale and side decks, bunks with cushions and storage hatches, lined cabin, windscreen, planetary gear steering, deluxe whale tail transom, boarding platform,
Stainless steel targa/rocket launcher, stainless removable bait table, canopy, front and side clears, stainless steel boarding ladder with step, bunk infill, porta potti, live bait tank (plumbed), kill tank, self-draining cockpit, dual-motor transom, auxiliary motor transom, stainless steel windscreen grab rails, stainless bait table/ski pole combo, Softrider gas seat pedestals, two-tone Paint, hydraulic steering.
Price as tested with Redco RE180MO trailer, Navman Fish 4500 sounder and 27MHz marine radio, offshore safety equipment and all on-water costs: $47990. Test boat supplied by Camden Haven Marine, 537 Ocean Drive, North Haven, phone 02 65599344.