2400 Offshore Fishing Catamaran
Many voyages of discovery and great human endurance have been
made in catamarans. The most famous of modern times is undoubtedly
Dr Thor Heyerdahls Kon-Tiki expedition. When you read
about the Kon-Tiki, you will discover his boat was incredibly
attractive to fish. Mahi mahi, giant sharks and tuna shadowed
the stable craft virtually the entire length of the long passage
across the Pacific. If Heyerdahl wanted dinner, he merely
dangled a line and a giant fish jumped on the hook
was as easy as that.
Today there is a rediscovery underway. Modern-day adventurers
are suddenly turning to the catamaran as a more efficient
and comfortable way of crossing oceans and catching fish.
While the latest wave of contemporary cats are only loose
derivations of the traditional articles, they still boast
the same time-honoured advantages over monohull boats
better stability, a smoother ride, more space and greater
speed over rough water.
Its fad-mad America which has turned cat crazy these
past few years. And, as is wont to happen in America, the
sceptics are now declaring cats as their own great invention.
Even Grady-White is producing a boat it calls Tigercat and
at 8m in length and with an almost constant beam of 2.5m it
has obvious advantages over Gradys sportsfishing monos
in terms of deck space.
Of course, we all know Australia is the pilot for the rest
of the world in the development of the modern-day catamaran.
Though were disinclined to blow our own trumpets, the
fact is we have long made cutting-edge cats. We also make
the worlds best dedicated fishing cats.
Kevlacat has been at the forefront of the evolution of the
modern-day fishing cat for more than a decade.
These days, the Kevlacat factory in Queensland is catering
for an increasing demand for its strong but lightweight boats
from all over the country. Meanwhile, its American-based factory
is selling everything it can build.
In Sydney, Kevlacats new distributor Warren Wieckmann
is looking to sell at least 30 cats in the year 2000. He has
great faith in the product and says he spent six months looking
at a whole range of craft before deciding on becoming a Kevlacat
He explains that he wanted a boat which could do everything
and has found it in his Kevlacat Series 2400.
Official Business, rocking gently by the fuel wharf as stiff
south-westerly winds ruffle Pittwater, "is a big little
boat," he says.
Though he is pitching the 2400 Series as an all rounder, saying
how nice it would be to take your family aboard and head off
for lunch, my thoughts inevitably turn to heading wide and
chasing big fish.
Twin 130hp Yamahas, big fuel tanks and positive foam floatation
say so much Kevlacats are made for long-range fishing.
The first thing you will notice with the 2400 is its styling
sporty with shapely decks, a useful hard or bimini
top, and new streamlined cabin windows. Of all the powercats,
the Kevlacats must surely be the best looking.
The next thing youll notice are the shapely, user-friendly
mouldings and quality finish. The 2400 reflects a more precise
boat building job than many production brands which have been
in the game twice as long.
Built to NSW 2C Survey for six, Official Business is foam-filled
and has a manual bilge pump and other silly things which survey
requires. Weighing just under 2500kg on trailer, the 2400
is legally trailerable in NSW with a LandCruiser, assures
Despite a hull weight of only 1400kg, the 2400 has a substantial
moulded length of 6.5m (excluding bow sprit and outboard pods).
Step aboard and it feels much bigger again.
You can switch from gunwale to gunwale and the boat is unaffected.
That sense of stability also exists longitudinally as well.
As with all Kevlacats, the stainless steel work is first rate
and includes a six-spreader rocket launcher. From this solid
structure you could also mount your outriggers, GPS and radio
Encouragingly, the 2400 has a lock-up cabin with seated headroom
and sufficient sleeping space for two adults. Theres
even a LectraSan toilet under the port-side bunk.
The dash on the 2400 is not gratuitously big, though theres
room for flush-mounting your electronics and gauges near the
padded steering wheel, linked to a Hydrive hydraulic steering
On the passengers side is a big grabrail, side-pocket,
built-in tackle drawer and covered compartment for the stereo
The windscreen is nice and protective when seated, but not
so high that you cant look over it when standing. It
has heavy black anodised aluminum framework, but it doesnt
affect your view.
I was impressed with the 360° swivel Reelax seats and
the seatboxes underneath them with aft-facing padded tops
which can act as informal seats for extra crew or perhaps
as somewhere to plonk yourself down when youre drift-fishing.
The drivers seatbox formed one giant insulated icebox
and alongside were dedicated moulded recesses for the EPIRB
and fire extinguisher.
Despite the large bimini top shading the helm area the cockpit
has more than enough room. It really is a big work area, expected
in a much bigger boat. Mind you, storage could be improved
by making more use of the space underfloor.
Still, the transom has a really deep livebait tank (plumbed
and ready to go) and a big bait storage-well built into it.
Gunwale support is superb short safety rails act as
ready-made grabrails and, with the inherent stability of a
catamaran and the grip of carpet underfoot, you will feel
safe about leaning overboard to trace a fish.
Speak to the Kevlacat personnel and they will tell you their
2400 works nicely without boards as small as twin 90s
both two and four-stroke.
So why did our good friend Mr Wieckmann have twin V-four 130hp
outboards hanging off the tail?
The answer became obvious, yet not painfully, the moment we
headed out for the photo shoot. He knows only two speeds
flat out and stationary. But the Kevlacat is made for rough
treatment and will bounce back, hell tell you, like
a bulletproof vest hit by a pea-shooter.
Counter-rotating props, hydraulic steering and a padded wheel
made the 2400 simply a gorgeous boat to drive. It slipped
onto the plan almost imperceptibly at about 2500rpm and can
be held up there at as low as 2300rpm.
At 4100rpm, we cruised out to sea with a stiff breeze at out
backs at a fast clip of 27kt. At 5800-5900rpm into the teeth
of the wind, we managed 43kt and at no time was it a jarring
Of course, power catamarans have long been the first choice of water
police and various other rescue services. All of them have
traditionally placed great confidence in this boat design
and on some of the wildest river bars in the country.
Indeed, our very own Kevlacats are a highly refined breed
of cat with better bloodlines than anything new-fashioned
hitting the US market. Like Heyerdahl discovered on Kon-Tiki,
you only need to cast adrift on the Pacific to find out which
way the current flows.
For more information please contact Kevlacat by phone on 07
5472 8470, fax 07 5472 8559 or email:
Deadrise at transom:
Weight (hull only):
Catamaran with wave-breaker in tunnel
6.5m (7.68m LOA)
Rated hp (ea):
Yamaha Saltwater Series outboards
Loop-charged two-stroke 90° V-four
Article taken from Blue Water Boats & Sportsfishing.