REVIEW: BAR CRUSHER 560WR

By: BERNARD CLANCY, Photography by: STUART GRANT


Bar Crusher’s 560WR is as strong as an ox and can go the distance in the rough stuff. Serious fishos, please form an orderly queue…

If you’re a dedicated fisho, then you’re going to like the Bar Crusher 560WR. It’s a 6m walkaround that weighs just 1300kg, including the boat, motor, and trailer.
This means less wear and tear on your tow vehicle (and you, as the driver), and less fuel for the car and boat. You could even fit a smaller outboard motor, too, if you wanted to save more dollars. It’s an attractive package.
We’ve written in these pages before about Bar Crusher’s unique water ballast system, which allows the boat to be built with a deeper vee than normal in an aluminium craft (in this instance, 18 degrees) and still retain excellent stability at rest. It’s best-of-both-worlds stuff.

ALL SET UP
The WR model is the walkaround version of the company’s 560 hull and it’s sure to prove popular, particularly in northern climates. The boat is as strong as an ox and can go the distance in the rough stuff, provided you give the motor plenty of trim.
It’s very tempting to try to get that sharp nose down into the sea while you’re travelling quickly. In fact, the boat planes far more comfortably with the motor trimmed out and the nose up. Spray can sometimes be annoying in craft of this type but on the test day, with fairly benign conditions, we had nothing come on board.
The Suzuki 115hp four-stroke pushed the boat along very well and we found it to be quite nimble and fun to drive. In fact, the engine impressed with its power out of the hole and quietness. More than once I had to check the tacho to see whether the motor was on! We achieved a top speed of 68km/h at 6000rpm and the boat cruised comfortably at 40km/h at 4000rpm. That’s fairly tidy.
The WR is well set up for fishing, with the Sarco anchor pinned on the bowroller between the solid split bowrail. The chain and rope is stored in an open bin in the bow. Access is easy via a raised checkerplate platform at about half gunwale height with twin lidded storage bins embedded. Six rodholders are mounted on the front of this platform, which may be a good idea when travelling but rods here could be a nuisance when fishing.
Gunwales all round are characteristically wide and feature three rubber non-skid pads. They are great to sit or stand on when getting on and off the boat.
The centre console can only be described as super strong. The tinted high screen is mounted on an over-engineered black frame (to prevent flexing and twist) with a high fold-down T-top complete with six-pot rodholder. The rods are easy enough to get at if you stand on the seat box, which is a 123lt, two-person icebox with padded lid set in a fixed frame in the floor.
The console is painted white (the entire boat is painted with the exception of wet surfaces and the cockpit floor) and features a Stanzo helm centrally mounted, which can be a little awkward with two people on the seat. I found the boat was weight-sensitive and rode far better with the passenger on the dicky seat on top of another 62lt icebox in front of the helm position. This has four rodholders either side, complete with grabrails.

FEATURES APLENTY
While the helm position hid the trim and fuel gauges, major instruments were in the clear. A Navman Fish 4500 is top left on the console and a Navman Tracker 5500 top right. The radio is to the left of the helm with everything else quite handy. A small key shelf directly above the instruments has a 12V socket.
On the right side of the console, a step-over plate on the cockpit sole hides control cabling and wiring. This is not one of the boat’s design highlights. Although the cables are well protected, you’re going to stub your toes on the cover plate until you get used to it.
There’s heaps of storage room under the console binnacle but it’s perhaps a little too exposed to the weather in such an open boat as this. The lower lip of the shelf doubles as a footrest. The underfloor tank is quite large.
Sidepockets are long and will take plenty of gear. While the livebait tank is not overly large, it is deep, has a smoked acrylic cover and should handle a good number of smaller baits.
The stern treatment is identical to the 560’s brothers, with the Suzuki 115 mounted on a pod incorporating a full-width tread plate platform. You can climb aboard via a portside transom opening with a simple lift-out ‘door’ panel. It’s easy to use and effective. If you’re in the water or on the trailer, a two-step, very solid swing-down alloy ladder gives easy access. Grabrails either side go from chine level to gunwale height. A removable teflon berley pot is inserted through the platform on the starboard side.
A black aluminium baitboard features three small rodholders and a teflon cutting board insert. The optional full-width transom seat swings up to get out of the way when the action’s on and it also serves to protect batteries and the oil bottle, which is high on a shelf under the transom. The durable rubber panels stuck to the seat really won’t do much in the comfort department but there is a padded backrest panel on the transom.
The thigh-height gunwales are extremely wide with six specially-crafted aluminium rodholders inserted between rubber non-skid pads.
I wished we’d had a few days to take this boat fishing. I was impressed with it but really the true test is in getting it dirty. Now that would have been fun.

WHAT WE LIKED
Good performer
Excellent rod storage
Wide gunwales
Functional console

NOT SO MUCH
Trim and weight sensitive
Storage is too open to elements
On-floor wiring to console.

 

Specifications: Bar Crusher 560WR

HOW MUCH?
Price as tested: $45,950 package
Options fitted:    Navman 4500 and 5500
Priced from:    $38,450

GENERAL
Material:    Plate aluminium (4mm bottom, 3mm sides)
Length overall:   6.1m
Beam:     2.22m
Deadrise:    18°
Rec. max HP  140
Hull weight:    780kg
Weight  on trailer:   1310kg

CAPACITIES
Fuel:     150lt

ENGINE
Make/model:    Suzuki
Type:     DF TX four-stroke
Rated HP:    115
Displacement:    1950cc
Weight:    186kg
Prop:     19-inch stainless steel

SUPPLIED BY
Bar Crusher Boats,
Dandenong South, Vic,
Phone: (03) 9702 8555.
Website: www.barcrusher.com.au

Originally published in TrailerBoat #211

 


Want the latest stories delivered straight to your inbox? Sign up for the free TradeBoats e-newsletter.