When the opportunity arose to test a boat from the Blue Fin stable I jumped at the chance, especially the fishing-friendly 5m Blue Fin Cobia.
I always prefer to take a test rig down to the ramp myself to get an indication of its towing behaviour. My V8 Holden Crewman towed this rig like a breeze; very smooth and with no movement whatsoever from the trailer from the slowest speed to 100kmh on the highway.
When we pulled up at the ramp and backed towards the water, the width of the trailer for a 5m boat was fantastic. Clearly seeing down the length of the boat in the mirrors is an important factor when deciding on a boat-motor-trailer package. The trailer was a Dunbier single-axle model with skids and rollers set up perfectly for the boat.
The Cobia slid off easily and retrieving it back onto the trailer was only a one-man job – even in strong river current.
The weather was sunny with no wind at all, almost too perfect, so all I can judge this boat on is its flat-day performance. However, we did cruise the river jumping boat washes, which it cut through well.
The 5m Cobia is built with fishers and boaties in mind. It is suitable for a bay or estuary angler and even a tournament competitor. The foredeck is customised with a purpose-built support plate for the electric motor of your choice.
In the peak of Summer you could even fit a canopy to keep yourself and the family out of the sun.
This model has a side console, which gives an amazing amount of floor space for the tackle box, esky, picnic basket or whatever.
There are two large underfloor storage areas in the forward casting platform, which is excellent for casting and spotting fish. The huge area under the deck is for all your safety gear and added extras you need to hide away. The floor is completely covered in marine carpet.
There is a huge anchor well on the foredeck for easily attending to the ground tackle. The well is of rotomoulded polyethylene to minimise noise when tending the anchor and under power. Many of us have experienced the anchor and chain banging around as we’ve been flying along on the water and it annoys all on board.
The deck has five seat positions so you can move them around or add extra for more passengers. The seats are well-upholstered and comfortable for long runs.
The neat little side console with screen was worth its weight in gold. The morning we hit the water it was a chilly 6° and the screen was a great shield from the wind. It would also be good protection for a depth sounder and GPS. And there is a storage shelf under the console with enough room for tackle bags or lunch.
There is a storage pocket down the side for paddles and rods.
The transom engine pod comes with a super-strong aluminium ladder for easy access whether the boat is on the trailer or the water.
The tested Cobia was fitted with a Mercury 75hp Optimax, which is under the maximum horsepower rating of 90hp but really got the rig out of the water quickly with power to spare. With one passenger, skipper and all the safety gear performance was smooth and fast throughout the rev range.
Optimax motors are fantastic on fuel. On boat tests we power up and down a lot and put the machine through its paces and after an hour of work we had used only 8L of fuel, according to the Mercury SmartCraft digital gauges.
The handling was excellent throughout the rev range and when we hooked full-lock turns at around half speed the Cobia gripped the water superbly.
We were just an hour into the test when we had an urgent call from the dealer – we had to return as the boat had been sold. I would love the chance to give this boat a fishability test next time.
Overall, Blue Fin has done it again with a great all-round performer. Driving around the river you could really feel the strength of the plate sides.
This boat has something for everyone, young or old, and the test package price of $27,990 has value for money written all over it. With a Mercury 75hp carb two-stroke prices start at $25,500 so get to your local dealer and get in this boat – you will not be disappointed.
– Travis Davies