Hard to Fault
By Barry Thompson
Rangi is the seventh Finlay Ignite to be built and is one of the best yet. Exceptional hull performance, the standard of finish and construction, all add up to one hell of a good boat from this ‘young’ Timaru builder.
Finlay Boats is one of the newer brands in the alloy boat market, that, in a short time have built a reputation for high quality, exceptional handling and style. Although their range isn’t extensive, seven in all, they cover all aspects of design; runabout, centre console, cabin and hardtop.
In the past three years the Timaru based company has delivered 16 boats, to clients throughout New Zealand, plus one overseas.
The hulls are constructed with 5mm running surfaces and sponsons and have enough air chambers to float even when totally swamped. Like all Finlay pontoon boats, the Ignite features four folds in the pontoons, which not only gives the boat its individual style but also adds strength and robustness.
We well understand the benefits of a hardtop and there’s no doubt they help make your boating more comfortable all year round. Finlay’s hardtop is one of the better looking ones and comes with sliding side windows, hardened glass screens so you can add a couple of wipers, (although it is an incredibly dry boat). Overhead hatches provide good air flow when underway and the cockpit deckhead is fully fabric lined.
Finlay paints their boats right throughout so there is no alloy showing anywhere apart from below the waterline and the cockpit sole.
The sole can be covered with a clip-on carpet or tube matting. All the open side lockers are lined as are all surfaces in the cabin and wheelhouse spaces. The fibreglass dash allows plenty of space for large MFDs.
Teak side trays, one each side of the wheelhouse are now a signature piece for the larger Finlay boats and provide a touch of class that makes a nice change from the painted alloy.
The seating options are varied, with the twin pedestals the most popular setup. The moulded seat bases are fully adjustable so you can set it in the position you feel most comfortable driving. One of the features is the bolster arrangement which allows you to drive standing, seated or somewhere in between.
The cabin is conventional with twin berths and a central infill to make a large double. There is limited storage under the berths due to the double chine arrangement of the hull, but there is plenty of space in wide side trays. A hatch in the forward bulkhead gives access to the anchor locker should you need to sort out any anchor chain issues.
Rangi has been set up for family boating, but with an emphasis on fishing, so it’s no surprise to see a live-bait tank, central custom made paint board, coaming rod holders and a rocket launcher overhead. There’s even a pair of Kilwell 3.9m outrigger mounts as the owner intends to use the boat around the Hawkes Bay for game fishing. Triple tier side shelves are also capable of handling your average boat rod.
Underfloor there is buoyancy both sides, with an extra large 600mm deep wet locker forward and a 235-litre fuel tank aft down the centerline.
The cockpit deck is above the water level and while there are no scuppers, all water drains quickly into a sump, via a scum box, where an auto pump delivers it over the side.
This area is a great fishing and diver (or scallop dredge) recovery area.
For extra seating, you can convert the rear steps to include cushions. Hella blue lights under the coamings provide none reflective lighting when night fishing and look extra cool when you’re relaxing with a few cold ones in the evening.
ALL ROUND PERFORMER
With a deep V design like the Finlay Ignite 6300, the total surface area of the hull coming into contact with the water is increased, and that increases resistance, so you need more power than a shallow vee. Our test boat was powered by a single Honda 225, an engine at the top end of the recommended 175-225hp range. On the smooth waters of Port Levy, the GPS indicated 45.5 mph @ 6000 rpm, for a max fuel burn of 76.0 lph. Bring that back to 4500 rpm and the speed drops to 33.5 mph and the fuel falls to 32.5 lph or close to a litre per nautical mile.
The Finlay Ignite 6300HT, like all Finlay boats, is very customisable, which has a certain amount of appeal to some potential owners. It’s a boat that is hard to fault when it comes to finish and performance and for a hardtop, it looks damn good too!
- Model & Model: Finlay Ignite 6300
- Priced from: $NZ130,000
- Price as tested: $NZ169,000
- Type: Pontoon Hardtop
- Construction: 5mm/3mm Alloy
- LOA: 6.75m
- Beam: 2.43m
- Deadrise: 23.5 deg
- Trailerable Wght: 1300kg (est)
- Height on Trailer: 3.10m
- Test Power: Honda 225 4S
- Propeller: 17” Stainless
- Power options: Outboard only
- HP Range: 150-225hp
- Fuel capacity: 235 litres
- Trailer: Finlay