By: Rick Huckstepp, Photography by: Rick Huckstepp

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Big boats from China have been on the rise in the Australian marine market for some time and now we have trailerable fishing craft emerging from the giant Asian producing country such as the affordable Koya Rush 185 CC, writes Rick Huckstepp


Among the literally millions of items flowing onto our shores from China is a cross section of boats being manufactured to target a broad spectrum of the market here.

Boats over the 50-foot range are not uncommon and, recently, we have seen a changing trend with an influx of trailerable craft.
Koya's Rush 185 centre console is one of these and we boarded it at Mooloolaba for a run outside along the coast.
First impressions are of a deep-vee hull with a very acute entry in the forefoot which should lend itself to a good ride underway in less than favorable seas.
As we found out it did cut cleanly, offering a soft and dry ride in all directions in the steep and almost breaking swell of about 1.2m coming over the bar at the entrance to the river.
One issue we had to contend with on the test day was a totally dead battery that was past recharging by the outboard engine so we were left with a 140hp Suzuki that was trimmed right in for the entire test once we had jump-started the engine from a power pack.
While stability on the plane was good, we did experience quite a bit of list with two adults standing against one gunwale when dead in the water. This is not uncommon in boats that can handle steep, rough seas with comfort and, typically, those boats have a sharp deadrise fore to aft. In this case, an 18-degree deadrise would account for this list. It comes back to what the individual wants out of a boat; stability when fishing or comfort underway. It is a big ask to get 100 per cent satisfaction in both fields of performance.




Even though we could not trim the leg for optimum running, the Koya had no trouble planing and it was easy at the helm with plenty of throttle pressure during hard turning. Running with the swell it tracked directly and responsively.
Also available in soft top, the test boat featured a fibreglass hardtop. With the antennae for radio and GPS positioned on top, the wiring to those items could have been more neatly installed. As it was, the wiring was tacked down to the gelcoat with plastic retainers - a little untidily.
This hull has the void between the outer and inner liner filled with foam so all hatches in the deck led to areas which were all usable as iceboxes.
At the forequarters, the cockpit liner sloped inward to the deck level so standing and fishing in this section would prove to be unsteady. Foot position in relation to standing at the gunwales amidships and aft was fine with plenty of height in the coamings for support for the upper thighs.
The cockpit liner amidships featured rebates either side with hooks and holes to put rod tips and butts. With no retainers to stop them jumping off their hooks, we found the rods coming adrift on a number of occasions (a small elastic strap would remedy this). We did notice that one of these rebates was cracking where it had been joined, most likely fibreglassed-in to the liner. The anchor well is hatched and some distance aft of the bowsprit, and between the raised foredeck and the front of the large centre console, another stowage area was located under hatch.




The console had an opening allowing one to get inside and access the head which was plumbed for pump-out operation electrically and if that failed, a manual pump was secreted among other plumbing in the aft quarter hatches in the raised rear deck.
The lockup access was made up of a lift-up hatch and a bi-fold door, the latter having a habit of springing open when underway (an improvement in the style of the latch fitting needs to be undertaken here). There is plenty of dry stowage space inside of the console, although it would not suit anyone but small children as a berth.
The helm was laid out neatly with plenty of space to flush-mount large electronic units and for other equipment to be gimbal-mounted on top.
The seat at the console was double in size with a rocking backrest. The base was a totally enclosed module with access doors at the rear. The box could be slid on tracks right up against the helm so that the rear of the cockpit could be opened up for more fishing space when at anchor.
Driving this boat back onto the trailer, we noted the engine cowl well down to the water level. This is due in part to the inability to trim the engine on the day but also the sharp deadrise which typically offers less buoyancy at the stern when in this bow-up situation. Taking this into account, a long leg engine (X-25-inch), rather than the short (L-20-inch) version on the test boat, would alleviate this.
While the finish on this boat is not quite what we have come to expect from other major boatbuilders, one must realise these boats are built to a price.
Some after-purchasing attention to the detail we have mentioned will go a long way to tidying up this rig for some serious offshore work.




Soft and dry ride in steep chop and swell




Fit up such as wiring on hardtop, rod holding ability in sidepockets, and tolerance in console access hatch need addressing
Plastic catches on deck hatches won't last long under foot (stainless steel types would be more suited to deck areas)





Specifications: Koya Rush 185 CC




Price as tested:               $68,000
Options fitted:                 Marine toilet, teak side coaming, hardtop, GPS and depthsounder
Priced from:                    $45,000 w/ 115hp Evinrude E-TEC or Suzuki




Material:                          Fibreglass
Length overall:                 5.62m
Beam:                             2.25m
Deadrise:                         18º
Weight:                           726kg
Flotation:                        Level




Fuel:                               220lt
Holding tank:              30lt
People:                    6
Rec. max. HP:                             150
Rec. max. transom weight: 220kg




Make/model:             Suzuki DF140 (L-20-inch leg)
Type:                               Fuel injected four-cylinder four-stroke
Displacement:                 2044cc
Weight:                           186kg
Gearbox ratio:                2.59:1
Propeller:                        17-inch
VELS rating:                    3-star




Custom Craft Marine (Qld) Pty Ltd,
147-153 Bulcock Street,
Caloundra, Qld, 4551
Phone: (07) 5491 2167; (07) 5491 6966


Originally published in TrailerBoat #228

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