The Quintrex 570 Spirit is very close to being one of those rare boats where all the thinking has already been done for you – all you have to do is buy a turn-key package from a dealer, jump in and fish to your heart’s content.
That’s not surprising, considering that the good people at Quintrex have been constantly developing and updating the design and construction of such boats for decades. But it’s the refinement and detail that really grab you.
There’s abundant storage exactly where you need it, plenty of creature comforts, space to fish three offshore or four in sheltered waters and that Millennium Hull has been refined to produce close to the best ride you’ll find in a mass-produced aluminium boat.
The 570 Spirit with Yamaha F115 four-stroke is a favourite package of Graham Barclay Marine sales staffer Jay Maunder, and justifiably so. “It’s just a neat, balanced outfit with no vices and a whole heap of stuff to make being afloat a lot of fun,” he said.
It looks pretty, too. The flowing lines of the cabin are a far cry from the boxy aluminium ‘afterthought’ cabs of yesteryear and although it’s clichéd, there’s no better way to describe the gleaming finish as ‘like fibreglass’. The talismanic Quintrex flared bow and the rounded transom enhance this feel of a smooth build and flowing design.
This boat will take a family of four or five (it’s rated to six adults) for a great day out on the lake, bay, harbour or river, and with the rear lounge folded down it will be just as functional and safe fishing miles offshore with the skipper and two mates.
The high cockpit sides will keep the ankle-biters in and spray and slop out.
The cosy cuddy offers shelter from blistering Summer sun or a sudden offshore squall. A shelf/padded backrest augments cabin storage and access to the anchor well, bollard and bow roller through the large hatch is a piece of cake.
A couple of sleepy kids can doss down in comfort on the short bunks or you can house a whole load of tackle boxes and extra fishing gear.
The rotomoulded bins under the bunks, like another in the cockpit floor, offer a host of storage for safety gear and much more, enabling the cockpit to remain free from clutter.
Storage shelves in the cabin returns next to the comfy, reversible pedestal chairs for skipper and mate allow more space for phones, car keys, sunglasses, sunscreen and all the other personal accoutrements that seem to go with a day on the water.
I remember opening a water bottle, taking a drink and there, within reach, was a cup holder – get what I mean about refined design?
You could store your catch in the below-deck compartment that drains into the main bilge or just add a fibreglass or poly esky. The only other major additions any hard-core fisho would want to make revolve around more rod storage, either as rocket launchers on the aft bimini frame or on a rack at the transom, maybe incorporating a bait-board.
This boat was fitted with ‘level flotation’, meaning plenty of foam up the sides to remain upright if swamped in calm conditions. The side pockets are resultantly smaller but each rotomoulded assembly accommodates a deep recess for smaller items, two drink holders, housing for a marine speaker for a sound system, horizontal storage for two fishing rods up to 7’ and an LED cockpit light – again, refined, functional design.
With a boat like the 570 Spirit destined for offshore work, it was only right that we try it outside. With three aboard, we headed across a placid Forster bar, ruffled only by a few pressure waves from the outgoing tide.
The Yamaha 115 four-stroke made light work of the crossing and the 570 Spirit had little trouble purring along at 18 to 20 knots into about 1m of swell.
Like almost all alloy boats, this is no offshore speed machine bred to leap from swell to swell at (literally!) breakneck pace, but the Millennium Hull’s fine entry sliced nicely into the head sea and the flared bow meant minimal spray made it past the gunwale.
We quartered and crossed the swells with little commotion, made ever-tighter turns to try unsuccessfully to upset the hull’s equilibrium and then headed over to the bait reef off Second Head, where we flung lures at hordes of hungry bonito and chopper tailor.
The Quinnie was rock-solid in the shore slop and with Keil landing a fish at the starboard gunwale, Jay at the helm and me snapping pics while leaning out off the starboard boarding platform, the hull felt steady and secure with all three occupants on the same side.
When we headed back in, the following sea and growing bar pressure waves unable to produce a hint of broaching or bow-steer.
Back in the lake, the following performance figures were gleaned from the square-look Yamaha digital gauges.
3000rpm14 knots (26kmh)
3500rpm18 knots (33kmh)
4000rpm21 knots (39kmh)
500rpm28 knots (52kmh)
5500rpm30 knots (56kmh)
6000rpm34 knots (63kmh)
The Yamaha F115 four-stroke was an entirely forgettable engine in the best possible way – it did everything demanded of it quietly and efficiently with a minimum of fuss, letting us get on with enjoying ourselves. Only in the wildest dreams of the heaviest crew imaginable would you ever need the maximum 150hp on this hull – unless you really wanted to get the family into some express tow sports, in which case you’d want the optional ski pole.
Not that we got to test it with anything but a hose, but the 570 Spirit also features Quintrex’s Wash Deck, where any incoming water is drained off the carpeted decks into a sump/scupper arrangement and out through the transom. It’s not a true self-draining cockpit because the floor isn’t totally sealed and watertight, but it quickly disposes of most slop and rain.
The other interesting element of this package was the 300kg Quintrex I-frame alloy trailer, which would delete significant kilos from the tow equation. You could envisage real-world towing with a large four-cylinder sedan or medium SUV with a rating of around 1400kg or 1500kg – how’s that for towing a seagoing 18-footer?
QUINTREX 570 SPIRIT SPECIFICATIONS
|Length of Hull:||5.88m|
|Length on Trailer:||6.40m|
|Height on Trailer:||2.62m|
|Transom Shaft Length:||L/S|
|Weight (boat only):||637kg|
|Max Engine Wt:||242kg|
|Number of People (Level):||6|
|Max Load (Level):||782 kg|
Features: Compass; Cockpit Lights; Maxi Bracket; 2 rod holders; 2 drink holders; Wash Deck; enclosed side pockets; GX600 VHF radio; telescopic rear ladder; underfloor storage; painted with stripes; folding rear lounge; Lowrance X52 110-61 sounder, 3-year warranty.
Options as tested: Bimini and envelope; front and side clears; plumbed livewell, level flotation.
Price as tested: on TQA 58BW Quintrex alloy trailer: $53000. For more information contact Graham Barclay Marine, 129 The Lakes Way, Forster, phone 02 6554 5866, or visit www.barclaymarine.com.au