We need a Baitboat!
By Kev Robinson
Earlier this year myself & Evvo had been toying with the idea of getting a baitboat, it would be a handy tool at our syndicate water & on overseas trips, so we eventually bit the bullet & started looking around at what the various manufacturers had to offer and got a lot of information from the on-line carp forums. Whilst trawling through the internet we stumbled upon www.baitboats.com based in Hayling Island, not far from my Portsmouth home. The boat looked good & compared well to all of the others available. By now we had a mental list of all the pros & cons of each of the boats the R6 still came out as favourite! As for the price, well could it be true? With all the features of the top-end boats, but with the asking price of the AT Standard Baitboat. So with nothing to loose we exchanged emails with the main man Steve & before we knew it we were meeting up at a local lake, so we could have a proper look!
When we arrived at the lake Steve was messing about with one of those crappy white Annihilator baitboats. The water was choppy & basically it was getting nowhere fast. It was a good demonstration of how inefficient some of the other boats out there are so steer clear of the Annihilator! (Sorry whoever makes it, but it is crap!).
Then Steve introduced us to the R6, compared to the Annihilator it looked huge & much more sturdy, it was also black! (Why on earth someone would want a white baitboat is beyond me!). It was a standard 2 hopper version, with night lights & handle fitted. To say We were impressed was an understatement! The run time is awesome in comparison & in the rough conditions the boat just seemed to ignore the waves & continued on course. The R6 was very impressive, so much so, that after a few minutes of driving around the lake, dropping bits & bobs here and there (and managing to rescue a life ring that was floating about), We wanted one.
One of the best things about the R6 is that you can have it virtually anyway you want, Steve is very flexible in his approach & always thinking of new ideas. We opted for a deluxe version, which had the addition of another hopper at the rear.
hopper at the rear.
First impessions were good!
The R6 Deluxe - with rear hopper
|The Build Process
Once we had confirmed between ourselves that the R6 was the way to go, myself & Evvo went round to give Steve our cash. We had a fairly tight schedule as we had a trip to France in two weeks time, but we were assured it would be ready.
The specifications we finally opted for were:-
3 independent hoppers (so you could if required take 3 hookbaits out in one go)
Nightlights (Green front, Red back)
Carry handle (makes it so much easier putting in/taking out of water)
Steve proudly showed us his workshop & all the boats in different stages of assembly. I was impressed by the top quality components Steve uses in the R6 and also by the pride that he has in all of the boats he builds. So after a few cups of tea and a bit of a chat (Totalling about 4 hours or so!), we were sorted! We handed over our cash in anticipation.
Steve called me a few days later to let us know that the hull had been assembled. We arranged another quick get-together at the lake to have a quick look at progress. Because we were having the additional rear hopper fitted there were some fine adjustments needed to get the boat sitting correctly in the water. This was the first time we had actually seen our boat and after a few minutes of tinkering around we were well chuffed!
I got another phone call a few days later, our boat was ready for collection a week earlier than we had needed it! I popped round & picked it up (along with some spare battery connectors for a solar charger I was building at home).
France here we come!
Loaded & ready to rock!
|The Real Deal!
We charged the batterys and had a bit of a play with our new toy on dry land, just to familiarise ourselves with the controls. I finished assembling the solar charger and we were ready to go.
When we arrived in France we planned to introduce large quantities of trout pellet into the swim. With maybe single hookbaits or PVA bags dropped amongst the pellet feast we had deposited.
We were loading her to the max!
The weather that week was terrible, we suffered howling winds & rain. Despite this the R6 coped admirably. On many occasions we took two hookbaits out at once & when we dropped one side full of pellet, she would lean over a bit, but, was still very manoeuvrable. We almost couldnt believe it ourselves! The local anglers were amazed!
|I managed to get these shots on a milder day, they
clearly show the lines at the rear of the boat, as well as the ride height
when fully loaded the other anglers on the lake were impressed to say the least!
After each trip we connected the solar charger I had built, which kept the batteries topped up, even in the grim, low light conditions. Steve now does a bankside 12v charger, which would do the same from a car battery or lighter socket in the car.
We only managed to run one of the batteries flat during our week session and that was mainly down to me mucking about! We were using her quite frequently at ranges of up to 150yds, in heavy wind & rain, so we were more than happy.
In summary, the R6 performed brilliantly, in fact, better than we expected. During our week we had deposited between 70-80Kg of trout pellet using the R6, without one single problem. It helped us catch some fantastic fish, with Carp to 43lb & Cats to 57lb. So if your in the market for a baitboat, check out the R6, you never know, you might be pleasantly suprised!
Tight Lines! Kev.
|For more information on the R6
contact Steve direct email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Telephone: 02392 460006
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