Everyman 635

By: Norman Holtzhausen, Photography by: Norman Holtzhausen


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Although most manufacturers now have at least one centre console model in their range, Everyman has upped the ante again with their new, and bigger, 635 version…

Everyman 635
Everyman 635

Weather conditions
Average wind speed      5 – 10 knots
Swell                                almost none

Ever since the soft-baiting craze hit our shores in 2005, many people thought plastic lures were just going to be another fad. However, this time the trend brought with it new materials and techniques, and now this style of fishing is well and truly established.
It was not long before boat builders started developing custom boats suited to the requirements of the serious soft-baiter, and Everyman was no exception. We have already put their 595 centre console model through its paces in a previous issue, but when Hamilton-based designer and builder Nigel Langdale started getting queries from people wanting something a bit bigger, we went along to test out his latest offering.

Same, same but better

The 635 Centre Console still retains the open deck and space of the centre console, and like its predecessor, has the same 2.35m beam. However, this model has the extra length to take it to 6.35m overall. That translates into extra "fighting room" in the cockpit, and means that more anglers can effectively fish at the same time.

The smaller sibling has proved a winning design, and Langdale has wisely opted not to change a lot. It features the same high and wide centre console, with a full-height windscreen that provides enough wind shelter for two people. The addition of a very stylish T-top, with stretched nylon roof and side-mounted rod holders, provides sun and rain shelter for the occasional shower while not impinging on the fishing action.

Free to roam

The review boat had the optional charcoal painted hull, which looks extremely smart and helps protect the hull from wear and tear. It was equipped with a Yamaha 150hp four-stroke motor, right at the top end of the recommended hp range of 115hp to 150hp. This well-proven four-stroke provides reliability, fuel-economy, ample power and smooth running, which are all important for a serious fishing machine. The boat also comes standard with a 150-litre underfloor fuel tank, giving this boat more than enough range for even a long summer day's fishing trip.

In front of the console is a padded bench seat with backrest, which hides a large roto-moulded PVC fish bin. At first, it was a bit puzzling to understand how the bin had been fitted, until Langdale showed that the whole seat front folds open to enable removal of the bin for cleaning. Under the deck sit sealed buoyancy chambers, ensuring the boat will never sink even if swamped.

Sea defence

The bow area features an electric anchor capstan and a welded bollard, with a split anchor that's well hidden under two flush-fitting hatch covers. This allows two different anchor types to be carried, catering for different ground types. A welded bow rail, split at the bowsprit, provides a grab rail around the forward area. The gunwale is relatively high, which keeps the spray out and also provides security for anglers in that part of the boat.

The gunwale around the whole boat is very wide and comfortable, both in height and width, for sitting on while fishing or underway. Alloy rod holders are placed every metre or so along the gunwales, and a non-slip mat is fixed to the top of the gunwale. An underfloor storage area in the foredeck drains into the bilges at the rear of the boat, and would be a good storage place for dive gear and the like.

Space to spare

The centre console is huge, with space for plenty of instrumentation. The review boat had the superb Simrad NSE8 chartplotter/fishfinder fitted, but even this unit's eight-inch display only took up a small part of the available area. A Simrad VHF radio, Fusion stereo and the Yamaha electronic gauges finished off the electronics package. A nice touch is the welded edge around the parcel tray, ensuring that items don't slip off, and extra handholds have been added for the passenger to grab onto.

The main seating behind the centre console is a wide bench seat, with the top hinged up to reveal a huge locker. This is tall enough for dive bottles to stand up in, and can carry a huge amount of gear even if you are not into diving. The backrest swivels forward to reverse the seat's direction, making it useful when fishing from the stern as well. An area under the console will hold a gear bag or similar, and the welded footrest has a double duty, preventing anything from sliding out.

The transom features a step-through on the port side, with a live bait tank under a hatch in the step. The remainder of the transom width contains a secure battery locker, with the cover swinging down to form a padded bench seat for two people. The battery switches are located under the starboard gunwale and are easily visible from the helm.

Design in mind

A large bait board, with yet more rod holders, fits into the transom. The bait board has another trick up its sleeve: it is hinged and lifts up to reveal a plastic bin with a separate cover, perfect for keeping those messy, thawed-out packets of bait. A wide unlined parcel shelf runs either side of the boat until just forward of the centre console.

Overall, the finish of the boat is excellent, with the quality of the welding as good as we have seen on any alloy boat. All the inside edges around the boat have been rounded off to eliminate sharp corners, making for a very people-friendly boat, which is a nice touch.

So, the next priority was to get out on the water and see how it handled, and we were soon backing down the ramp at Maraetai Boat Club. The extreme low tide gave us a few problems with the mud but we carefully inched our way into deeper water and were away.

Under the hood

The big 150hp Yamaha proved very willing and the acceleration was white-knuckle stuff. We had three adults on-board but this motor clearly would cope with a lot more weight. The budget conscious buyer might consider one of the smaller power plant options, although reserve power is always useful.

All Everyman boats share the same design concept: namely the absence of planing strakes to make for a softer ride, while a shallow deadrise angle provides stability at rest. Broad downturned chines take care of spray and those same chines come into play when turning, preventing side-slip and giving the boat good control even through extreme manoeuvres.

The weather was good with little wind and almost no swell. This limited our ability to test the Everyman's rough-water capability but we used the photo boat to generate some wakes. The 635 easily cut through these, with the ride surprisingly soft for a hull with a shallow (15-degree) deadrise. We did manage to lift a couple of times and the boat landed comfortably.

This is an alloy boat and is therefore always going to be noisier than a fiberglass boat, especially since it is also unlined with no carpet to absorb sound. Despite it being a plate-sided hull, Langdale has managed to eliminate most of the vibration that often plagues this style of manufacture. He has clearly done a very good job in creating a rigid hull with minimal movement, something which translates to a quieter ride.

The boat has plenty of space for fishing, and while at rest we were able to move around easily. We had three on-board, and the boat was very stable even when we were all on the same side. Unfortunately, deadlines meant we could not get the boat dirty with a few fish, but this is certainly a boat for the serious "fisho".

Being seriously diver-friendly, the boat's boarding platform is of a size to accommodate a fully geared-up diver, and the T-bar-style alloy boarding ladder is designed for easy use while wearing fins. Another great feature is that the grab handles each side of the ladder are accessible from within the water. So many manufacturers fit them snug against the transom, where they are unreachable until you are halfway up the ladder.

Verdict

Overall, this is another winner from Everyman, with the kind of attention to detail that shows a level of individual care by the boat builder that is not often seen on production boats. The boat handles well, has plenty of space and looks good.

Packages start from $57,482.

For more details contact Russell Spiers, mobile 027 492 7079.


WE LIKED
Plenty of "fighting room"
Quality welding
Lack of sharp corners inside the boat

WE DIDN'T LIKE
As with all centre consoles, there is almost no shelter from inclement weather

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