Author: Mike Rose
Designed specifically for catching big fish a long way from shore, the latest Purekraft is everything you’d expect an “outsider” to be: tough, uncompromising and confident.
Powered by a Hyundai SeasALL 270hp diesel inboard running a Mercruiser Bravo 3 leg, Cold Steel is Tauranga fishing entity Macca’s 4th boat and the second he has had built specifically for him.
It is his first Purekraft and he says he chose the local boatbuilder because his new boat had to be the “toughest” available. He also wanted it built to his specs and wanted to be able to work alongside the builder to get things exactly as he wanted them.
He also liked the fact that Purekraft boats are designed by Hall Marine Design.
“They have three naval architects on their staff, undertake proper weight studies as part of their design process and have a really strong reputation here in Tauranga,” he says.
Jarrod Hall, who owns both Purekraft Boats and Hall Marine Design, smiles broadly when asked how he coped with having an owner so intimately involved throughout the design and build processes. “It was awesome,” he laughs.
A man who loves to chase very big fish, including bluefin and broadbill, Macca wanted a boat that was specifically designed to get out there, do the business and handle the rough water that one inevitably encounters on the way back.
Macca is obviously a man who does what he says. Almost instantly after taking ownership of his new Purekraft, he was out beyond Mayor Island on his shakedown cruise. A few days later he was away, motoring from Tauranga to Hicks Bay to chase big bluefin tuna.
Along the way he encountered a variety of different sea states and wind conditions and was blown away by the way Cold Steel performed.
“On the way home, we spent over 27 hours in 20 knot winds and quartering seas and were on autopilot. The boat just cut through the waves and there was none of that annoying alloy noise,” he says. “It was beyond expectations.”
With three guys on board, a full 570-litre fuel load, 70 litres of fresh water and a whole heap of gear, he also found his fuel burn “unbelievable”. Trolling at 6.5 knots, the 270hp diesel was using just 5.5 LPH while steaming at 25 knots used just 27 LPH, or approx just one litre per nautical mile.
Although Macca’s first love is obviously big game, he clearly enjoys other pursuits such as snapper fishing and diving, too. To accommodate these, Cold Steel has a large, fully-enclosed platform, protected by a substantial black cage-like pushpit. Both he and Jarrod are very proud that literally nothing drains back onto this platform; not the cockpit, not the large, custom baitboard (which both drain under the platform and straight into the water) and definitely not the four tuna tubes. These latter are instead sited in the aft portion of the side decks, a pair per side, and serviced from a sea chest in the engine bay.
Accompanying these on each side are three Exploding Fish multi-directional rod holders. There is also a single fixed holder on port for the dredge boom. The side decks have also been designed to accommodate Macca’s 7m outriggers so they can lie there, secured, while the boat is passagemaking.
On the port side of the transom is a pull out shower which is long enough to use on the platform for divers and on the starboard side of the bait station to service the small sink there. It is connected to a hot water cylinder underneath in a special locker that also houses the vessel’s various pumps.
All pump lines are double glanded for safety.
The custom bait station has two hard plastic inset boards with tackle drawer under, that small sink on the starboard side and Purekraft’s trademark bottle opener in the front. In keeping with the owner’s love of broadbill fishing, there is also waxed thread on its own spool in the drawer.
On the bait station’s aft edge are the obligatory rod and drink holders, along with knife insets and a rubber bung to hold stitching needles.
The live baitwell lives under the starboard access step to the platform and again drains directly into the ocean. The accessway also houses a push button control panel for the boat’s various pumps, eliminating the need to switch these on and off from helm station.
This “run things from the cockpit if possible” philosophy is also in play with a cockpit helm station, in its own locker, in the starboard side deck. Often seen on much larger vessels but rarely on one of this size, it includes both a gear/throttle lever and an autopilot control module. In another clever touch, the drink holder in the hatch cover is replicated below with the former fitting snugly into the latter so that refreshments can be close at hand regardless of whether the remote station is in use or not.
While for many, the loss of valuable cockpit space due to the inboard’s intrusion would be too high a price to pay, Jarrod and Macca have turned this into something of a positive. Covered, like the cockpit, the platform, the side decks and foredeck with SeaDek, it can act as both a workbench and a viewing/fishing platform. It can also house at least some of the owner’s numerous rods while cruising to and from those fishing spots. Fitted with an astonishing 16 alternately spaced rod holders, it has been designed to accommodate both bent and straight butt rod bases positioned, when all in place, so as to present a type of arch over the engine cover. This keeps these essential pieces of the ship’s armoury close at hand should a fin or workup be sighted while also ensuring that they are not in anyone’s way and that passage to the transom or platform is not obstructed.
While, on most boats, the aft area of the hardtop is used mainly to house a rocket launcher and perhaps some cockpit lights, on Cold Steel, the area is far more feature-packed. For a start, the rocket launcher contains 14 rod holders instead of the usual 6 or 8. On each of the outer edges, Purekraft have installed large integral towing point-like hooks. Uncertified to 100kgs these are there to help pull in the outsized fish Macca is confident of catching.
Also mounted on the trailing edge of the hardtop is a Garmin VIRB camera. Connected to a powered mount, it can not only record the action taking place in the cockpit and “out the back”, it also relays a real time feed directly to Cold Steel’s twin Garmin 12” MFD screens. As anyone who has game fished knows, the sport can involve hours of aft-facing wave gazing. With this set up, at least some of that time can be spend looking forward and watching the screen, a real bonus when fishing short-handed.
Another feature in this area is powered teaser reel mounted on the underside of the hardtop on the port side. Alongside is a small opening in the side bulkhead through which the teaser line runs, ready to quickly connect to the outrigger. Power has also been supplied to the matching site on starboard in case Macca decides to add one there, too.
On port side bulkhead there is a handily-placed EPIRB and a cradle for the Garmin Gesture Control autopilot remote. This unit, again strategically placed for instant access, enables a quick course change should some attractive activity be spotted on a different heading. The skipper simply grabs the remote, points it in the direction of the activity and pushes a button. The autopilot instantly responds and the boat heads over for a closer look.
Cold Steel’s seating plan is typical Purekraft. Although, at first glance, it looks like a standard king/queen setup, it’s a lot more sophisticated than that. On the starboard seat, the aft squab extends to produce a comfortable recliner. Under this is space for a substantial chilly bin: either a standard 150-litre or, for easier access, a 110-litre one on a trolley. On port, this space is used to house a powered Waeco 95-litre fridge freezer.
There is another hidden gem too: a 2-burner gas cooktop lives under the main passenger seat. It comes with its own LED light and is supplied by a gas bottle in a vented locker in the side bulkhead.
The electronics package is, as one would expect on a boat this fully-featured, a comprehensive one based around the twin screens that occupy the entire width of the dash. There is, in fact, very little of the dash that is not covered with a screen, a gauge, a switchboard or a piece of equipment. Included are a standard set of Hyundai gauges, complimented by a custom made Gear Smart temperature probe that monitors the fluid temperature in the leg; and control panels for StressFree drum winch the Zipwake automatic trim tabs and the Fusion stereo. This latter, connected to a powerful Wet Sounds system, comes with its own LED lighting controls and massive subwoofer that dominates the forward bulkhead in the cabin.
There are also side and rear mounted high output LED marine underwater lights and the electronic weaponry includes twin thru-hull 1kW transducers as well as a keel mounted GT51 side scanning transducer.
The cabin with its bulkhead to bulkhead squabs obviously sleeps three (as it did on that trip to Hicks Bay) and has its own toilet. It also has a set of 7 Dubro rod holders in the ceiling and holders under the side lockers for Macca’s swordfish rigs.
On most rigs, the foredeck and top of the hardtop are utilitarian places but little is as usual on this vessel. As well as the light bars and spotlights the forward section of the hardtop is flat, designed to be stood on and used, and even has a pair of drink holders to help ward off dehydration.
The foredeck, too, is purposely flat, designed for both fishing and baiting and protected by double-height bow rails. It, too, has a brace of drink holders and is reached by an ergonomically safe passageway from the cockpit.
At 7.7m, Cold Steel is Purekraft’s largest boat yet. It again illustrates that Jarrod Hall and his team of fellow naval architects are surely some of the most innovative and creative young marine designers around.
Having spent time with him on Cold Steel, it is obvious that owner Macca, a vastly experienced skipper and big game fisherman, is “over the moon” with his new vessel.
Despite being intimately involved with its design and layout, he was clearly “blown away” by how it performed “out wide” on just its second voyage. Seakeeping, fuel economy and performance all exceeded his expectations and he is now an obviously happy and very proud man.
He, and Jarrod and his team, have every right to be.
- Boat Design Name: Purekraft 770 HT
- Year Launched: 2020
- Builder: Purekraft Boats
- LOA: 7.90m
- Beam: 2.58m
- Max Speed: 34 knots
- Construction: Aluminium
- Fuel capacity: 570L
- Water capacity: 70L
- Engine make: Hyundai S270
- Drive Train: Bravo 3
- Thrusters: Lewmar 140
- Tabs: Zipwake 450 chine
- Interior lighting: Hella
- Underwater lights: Marine Night Lights
- Anchor winch: Stressfree Maxi freefall
- MFD: Garmin
- Autopilot: Garmin
- Priced from: POA