The team at Australian Marine Centre had their Bar Crusher Blitz recently – an on-water day where keen boaties got to test a mix of Bar Crusher boats.
I was fortunate to be invited to test and review a couple of the models, one of which was the Bar Crusher 615XSR – a hardcore rear-centre console, designed for fishing – the ‘R’ meaning the console is at the rear.
This model does come in a few different sizes, with the smallest being the 535XS and the largest, the flagship of this range, the 670XSR.
It’s always good to have a few size options when you find a boat model you like.
This way you can work to a budget and still get the vessel you want.
Boat storage is a main consideration too when buying a craft, so having a few different sizes helps with this.
Most regular readers know I love all sorts of fishing, from whiting to marlin and everything in between, and this boat would be quite capable in scratching all of those fishing itches.
With 4mm plate bottom and 4mm plate sides, you have a solid vessel that can easily get offshore and target a mix of species.
The hull also features the Quickflow water ballast system.
If you are unfamiliar with this, it’s basically a chamber in the bottom of the hull that fills with water when at rest, to give the boat extra stability.
Conversely, when you hit the throttle, the water flows out of the chamber and you’re on your way.
Combine these features with the 780mm freeboard, large reverse chines and you have a very stable fishing platform that allows you to easily move around the craft or safely reach over the side to land a fish.
All the things you want in a fishing boat.
Good stability at rest is also an advantage when using the raised casting platform.
In the Bar Crusher 615XSR the platform is relatively high, so there is a step on either side to make access easier.
I like a high casting platform, even in bigger lure fishing boats such as this, as you get a much better view of your fishing area.
It allows you to aggressively work a lure with a mix of retrieves too.
And there’s plenty of room around the helm, which makes moving around the vessel easy.
At the stern, there’s a bench seat that can also be used as a raised area to fish.
Alternatively, it folds away, giving you extra space at the back.
This boat was fitted with a large bait board that had two built-in trays.
Having a bait board that is practical and can store a mix of items within easy reach makes life much easier when on the water.
A decent sized live well and boarding access finish on the rear of the Bar Crusher provide a good work and fishing station.
Even though you have ample room to move around the boat, the 615XSR hosts a substantial helm area.
With electronics getting bigger, you do need a decent helm area to house them.
And the helm on this craft incorporates a large shelf for storage.
Additional space can be found in the large side pockets that run basically from the stern to the casting platform.
In a centre console, having plenty of storage can be challenging, but the Bar Crusher 615XSR seems to have this covered.
The beauty of the large shelves is that you can store plenty of gear and it’s within easy reach.
Even more storage can be found underneath the front casting platform.
Actually, there’s a huge amount of storage on this boat.
It is worth noting that the back edge of the casting platform can be removed to put a massive icebox in or, if you wanted to, even lay out a swag.
In terms of seating, there are several spigots for seats, which offer great flexibility – a bonus when having various numbers of people onboard.
The test boat was fitted with the ever reliable 140hp Suzuki, and it felt like a good match.
It had ample punch out of the hole and cruised nicely at mid-revs.
I tested this vessel after coming off the larger 670XT – which I’ll be writing about soon – so I was interested to see how it rode.
And I was impressed.
With about 4000 boats and jet skis hooning around the Seaway area producing wash, it provided the perfect testing ground to check how this craft handled.
Seated on one of the front seats, the ride was softer and smoother than expected.
The large reverse chines did the job too, pushing the spray down and away, giving a dry ride.
Overall, the Bar Crusher 615XSR is an ideal fishing rig – built tough, nicely laid out and well set up by the team at Australian Marine Centre.
This model had a Minn Kota electric motor fitted, which I would highly recommend.
Not only are they a valuable tool when lure fishing, they also make a great anchor or drift anchor when bait fishing in or offshore.
For more information on this or other Bar Crusher models, give the team at AMC a call on 07 3808 7333, or drop in and climb over the boats to get a real feel for them.