NOT CONTENT to rest on his laurels with the success of the 4.8 Galeforce runabout, Tony Le Mesurier has manufactured a six-metre model in response to requests for a larger hull.
A true twenty-footer, the new Galeforce runabout has used the strong under-hull features that give the 4.8 model its soft and very dry ride. Not surprisingly, the increased hull length has also provided extra sea-keeping ability, along with a vast amount of additional interior space as well.
The hull's underwater features are virtually the same as the 4.8, the main difference being the extra length and beam in the new model. The hull features the renowned 21-degree deep vee with a 30cm wide planing plank aft. There are beefy running strakes, massive reverse chines commencing around midway along the hull, on the water line, and widening to around 15cm at the stern. Stability both underway and at rest is a big feature of these boats.
The dimensions are as follows: overall length is just over six metres, there's a beam of 2.13 metres, gunwale height of 0.71 metres. The fuel capacity of the under floor tank is 130 litres. Interior space within the reviewed boat was awesome. Anglers would love it!
The tested craft, as is the case with all Galeforce craft, was manufactured as per customer specifications. It was fitted with a large storage compartment with single hatch in the forward below-deck deck, the standard centre console with forward seat, and an EvaKool ice box as helm seating. A ski pole was fitted at the transom so the owner could enjoy some water skiing as well as fishing. Two small seats were installed aft, each side of the engine well.
Power was courtesy of a Mercury 115 horsepower two-stroke. The 97 model four-cylinder engine made light work of the longer Galeforce. I saw her planing, two up, at 8.5 knots on my handheld GPS unit with the Mercury ticking over at 2850rpm. Best cruising will always depend upon sea conditions, but I saw her running sweetly at 38 knots at 4000 rpm into a half-metre swell as we cruised across the approaches to the Jumpinpin bar for photos. Bump was negligible, the ride even smoother than the 4.8 from my observations. Top speed was a creditable 50.5 knots with the Mercury trimmed well out. These are slippery hulls indeed.
Although Tony has rated the larger boat to take engines from 75 through to 130 horsepower the 115 Mercury was set up very well and we pushed the hull into very tight power turns without any cavitation or side slip. Turning was so sharp that it was wise to hang on tight before throwing over the wheel.
I found the hull handled the 'Pin bar very well. Having driven my own 4.8 Galeforce down for the photo shoot I could see the advantage of the extra metre of length in the new boat once I took it out into the outgoing tidal flow where serious pressure waves were developing. This extra length really does make a good boat even better.
The larger six-metre hull is remarkably stable at rest. Many folk tend to associate deep vee hulls with tenderness and tendency to lean if too much weight is transferred to the one side. However, the beefy reverse chines and large underwater strakes, plus the planing plank aft, combine to provide a great deal of stability both underway and at rest. In my opinion, many of the deep vee outboard boats I have tested during the past few years don’t compare with the Galeforce hulls as far as stability goes.
The test six-metre Galeforce was rated to carry five persons on the seating provided, but Tony can provide extra seating for up to eight if that’s what you want. Other options include provision of additional underfloor storage both forward and aft, full width amidships thwarts set up as either insulated live wells or coolers for fish storage in lieu of the console, a gunwale-height transom, 100-litre capacity under-floor live well with plumbing, extended casting platform up front, plus others.
Galeforce boats are all constructed of hand-laid fibreglass completely to customer specifications regarding final fit-out. Some of more unusual items Tony has installed in his boats during the last couple of years include massive fuel tanks and jumbo size fish- and ice-lockers for Torres Strait anglers who fish a long way from home and really bring home the goods.
Prices vary according to level of customisation. For more information phone Tony Le Mesurier at Galeforce Boats on (07) 5546 1225.
1) The six-metre Galeforce centre console went well with the 115hp Mercury on the transom.
2) The old and the new: two Galeforce runabouts at the 'Pin.
3) Check out the amount of room forward of the console in the six-metre version. There’s plenty of room up here for live wells or under-floor storage.
4) Both Galeforce runabouts doing around 25 knots. Check out the flat wash on the twenty-footer.Reads: 5434