Haines Signature 650F Boat Review

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Boat Review Date: March 2019
Author: Mike Brown

Overview

The term variable deadrise used to mean just one thing: it varied from sharp at the bow to, usually, much less so at the transom. With a Haines hull it means that, for the whole length, the bottom each side of the keel is concave. This gives a constantly varying deadrise from very sharp (33 degrees) at the keel to a still respectable 21 degrees at the chines. The buoyancy lost with the hollowing out allows the chines to be immersed at rest, giving extra buoyancy in the right place at a time when you need it most: when you are fishing.


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When you are moving you get a considerably greater than typical shock absorbing effect, which means you can travel that bit faster and still be comfortable. The extra draught right aft has the theoretical benefit of lessening the likelihood of broaching in a big following sea.

Haines boats have been around long enough for bugs to be ironed out and for the various desirable goodies to be identified and located in the right places. Undoubtedly, in what is bound to be the opinion of part of the family the cabin has been properly equipped: a solid sliding door and a chemical toilet. Also it has the less important contents of V-berths and an infill. A cabin’s main use is usually as the play space for bored juniors, and that infilled space provides good sprawling for electronic playtime.  In the current style the cabin absorbs most of the foredeck, leaving more space for the cockpit.

The deck is part of a vast moulded hull liner. These one-piece interiors are far easier to maintain than the old style ply and chopper gun finish. Below the deck are three bins. The two at the after end are long, can be filled with sea water and have individual pumps. Here is the resting place for kingies. The forward bin is directly connected to a drain bung at the transom, and can be flooded or venturi drained through it. Or you can put ice in it and keep the drinks cold.

The driving position is below a massively braced closed hardtop with sliding side glass. Seats are pedestal mounted bolsters. The dash panel has a big vacant area for the insertion of a combo screen up to 15 inches diameter, and it also has the easiest means of installing it. Loosen two catches and the whole panel hinges back exposing the wiring loom and steering gear. Hand grips and personal side pockets are in the right places, plus a lidded bin instead of the usual glove box, located on top of the deep dash ahead of the navigator.

Seat are provided for five, a comfortable number for a day’s outing although two more on folding chairs or cushions would not make a crowd. Three sit on a lounge at the transom; lift the legs of this and it folds to give a padded panel for a standing angler. Also at the transom are a live bait tank, a door to the boarding platform and the boarding ladder.

At anchor, with the pedestals lifted and stowed in the cabin, the cockpit provides a huge clear area. This could accommodate picnic tables and chairs or a gearing up place for a bunch of divers. There is still plenty of deck room available with seats and occupants in place, with more gear able to share space with the rocket launchers on the hardtop.

This hull is capable of using power up to a maximum of 250hp. Our more modest 200hp Suzuki gave us abundant urge two up, suggesting it would easily cope with a full load. Response to power trim was instant, the ride at full throttle immaculate, and stability as far as we were able to test it was very good.

There is no doubt this is an all purpose boat, nor any that deeper water fishermen should find it especially attractive.

Lowdown    

Price as reviewed                AUD $93,990

Length                               6.50m

Beam                                 2.50m

Fuel capacity                      370L

Motor fitted                        225hp Suzuki

Towing weight, approx        2,200kg