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Piranha Boats

It wasn’t so long ago that rotationally molded boats were looked upon with a degree of skepticism and even amusement; however that is no longer the case as the plastic boat has evolved to occupy its own space in to day’s boat options.

A new plastic boat is about to hit the dealer’s showrooms, manufactured by Roto-Fab of Bundaberg in Queensland. The boat is called the Piranha and although only three meters in length is packed full of clever design features not found in other boats regardless of size or construction. Shane Laird, designer of the Piranha has played a significant part in the design and mold construction of other plastic boats over recent years, but decided to develop a feature packed small boat to suit the entry level market and give purchasers maximum bang for their buck, in some ways like an original VW Beetle but for boaties.

A criticism often leveled at plastic boats is that the finish in no way compares with that of a fiberglass boat, however the finish on the Piranha is very good with textured areas internally to improve grip and a smooth exterior to assist the hydro dynamics of the boat which is evident when travelling through the water. Fitted with a 15 HP two stroke motor, the boat performs exceptionally well with no cavitation in the tightest of bends and considering the amount of spray created the boat remains dry.

The design of the floor is like a group of chevrons that act as gutters preventing any on board water from splashing about internally, when the boat is underway the forward motion drains the water to the stern of the boat and through a drain hole, the water can then be released from the bung when the boat is retrieved from the water. At the bow there is an anchor well with a stainless steel rail for attaching the anchor rope. The front hatch is quite large, in fact big enough to house the fuel tank as well as safety gear. The fuel line runs from the bow to the stern between the inner and outer skin and comes out at the stern next to the transom. This is a great idea as not only does this distribute the weight around the boat it also keeps the fuel line well away from any obstacles. The hatch cover is carpeted and when down becomes a stable casting platform. Located either side of the transom is an external sponson which ads considerably to floatation as well as being a useful step into the boat. We tested the flotation of the Piranha by putting four blokes inside, the result was impressive.

Summary

The 3 meter Piranha will have a wide appeal as a fun boat for teenagers and a low cost versatile fishing boat for estuary and impoundment fishing and owing to its tough polyethylene construction will also make an excellent tender.

Bush ’N Beach Fishing Magazine