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Consumer Surveys

Some of the biggest, and most popular reports we’ve published fall under the heading of Consumer Survey. Where possible, we try and assess the merits of the top brands of a popular type of craft available throughout Australia, and make an assessment of how well the manufacturer has achieved the mission statement. We’d do more of these Surveys if we could, but quite a few manufacturers choose not to participate in anything vaguely akin to comparison reports preferring instead to specific ‘one on one’ reports.


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Title Description Author Pages  
520-580 Half Cabs (2013)

For most families, this is the perfect boat configuration - shelter for Mum and the kids (some even have berths to sleep in) all have berths for the kids - easily towed, cheap to run, and safe for all inshore family boating. PW 10
AUD $5.00
Air O Float Boat Stabilizers

Inflatable tubes that attach to small boats for added stability and bouyancy. Independent report by Peter and Ruth. Peter Webster 5
AUD $5.00
Are Fuel Costs Killing Your Fishing?

EFFA - Eco Friendly Fishing Association encourages environmentally responsible fishing practices. Fuel economy is broken down to more than just your engine but your boating practices too Garry Fookes 4
AUD $5.00
Australian Boatbuilders Plate Report

The National Marine Safety Committe (NMSC) is introducing two new plates to label boats with the boatbuilder's ID and other safety information. Peter Webster 4
AUD $5.00
Bowser Blues

Managing Fuel costs and savings is getting harder and harder but it can be done! Peter Webster 8
AUD $5.00
Bridgedeck Cruisers

In-depth analysis of the second hand Bridgedeck cruiser market in the $50K-$70K range - by far the most popular grouping. Terrific choice of boats, but consumers need to tread warily. This report explains why and how Peter Webster 10
AUD $5.00
Buying a 4.75 m Cuddy Cabin Boat Report

Why the humble cuddy cabin style of boat is ideal for combining safe family boating with fishing. Peter Webster 12
AUD $5.00
Buying A 480-490 Console (2012)

Extremely popular class of boats now, the (mostly) interchangeable centre or side console versions of the same boat have pushed sales of these craft through the roof. We review all the issues buyers need to consider before parting with the cash. PW 11
AUD $5.00
Buying a 5.0 Alloy Cuddy Boat Report 1998

Why are aluminium cuddy boats of this size so popular? Includes details on eight different boat brands in this class. Peter Webster 12
AUD $5.00
Buying a 5.30 Cuddy Cabin Boat Report 2003

An indepenant report and Buyers Guide comparing both aluminium and fibreglass boats in the 5.3 cuddy class. Eleven different boats compared. Peter Webster 10
AUD $5.00
Buying A Pre-loved Boat (July, 2011)

For thousands of would-be boatowners this is a fantastic time to buy a boat new or secondhand. In this special report the F&B team explain the ground rules of how to do it wisely and achieve a good outcome. Peter Webster & Ruth Cunningham 9
AUD $5.00
Buying A Pre-Loved Boat (Summer 2014-2015)

According to the experts, there has never been a better time to buy a 'pre-loved' boat - and a trip through the classifieds will provide hard evidence that the prices are still going down to unheard of levels. PW 14
AUD $5.00
Cats vs Monos Part 1

The debate begins - Ride and handling .. Peter Webster 8
AUD $5.00
Cats Vs Monos Part 2

Peter Webster continues the debate of multihull versus monohull boats Peter Webster 6
AUD $5.00
Consumer Surveys

The Cuddy Sixes Part 1/2 Peter Webster 12
AUD $5.00
Cuppa Tea

Why aren't the Boat Builders listening ? Boaties want more than a couple of pedestal seats and a canopy these days! Editor's Note - They eventually went on to build a super custom platey - See the 5-Part Series under 'Boatbuilding.' Di Ross & John Batty 7
AUD $5.00
Cylinder Survey

Although they are a recent invention, Cylinder craft have earned an impressive reputation for their ruggedness, seaworthiness and exceptional safety. Peter Webster 11
AUD $5.00
Dinghy Fit-out

Fascinating report on a whole series of fitting-out projects for little boats this is truly tinny heaven and a terrific place to get good ideas to fit-out your tinny. Peter Webster 14
AUD $5.00
E10 Fuel Is An Unacceptable Risk

Is E10 Fuel safe for use in boat tanks? No, it is not! In this updated report, ABM's expert Gary fooks explains why Gary Fooks 5
AUD $5.00
EPIRB Changes 2006

The facts on EPRIRBs, new rules, and the main differences between the different types. What is best for you? Peter Webster 6
AUD $5.00
Fabulous 540's

Australia's most popular 5.4 cuddy cabins reviewed. Peter Webster 8
AUD $5.00
Family Half Cabs 5.2-5.8m Survey (2014)

As the intro states - these half cabs are as Aussie as Vegemite and the Hills Hoist - but the remain extremely popular for a number of very practical reasons, as PW explains. PW 11
AUD $5.00
Fibreglass 5.0 Fishing Boats Report 1998

We review the best models in the fibreglass 5 metre cuddy class and reveal what to look for. Nine boat brands shown. Peter Webster 13
AUD $5.00
Fibreglass Fishing Cuddy Survey 1998 under $35k

In 1998 we reviewed the top nine new fibreglass fishing boats under $35,000. Now these boats are back on the secondhand market far cheaper! We've done the research for you. Peter Webster 13
AUD $5.00
GRP Vs Ally Part 1

The truth - a non-bias discussion about Fibreglass versus aluminium boats. Peter Webster 6
AUD $5.00
GRP vs Ally Part 2

More about the truth about Fibreglass vs Aluminium. Peter Webster 7
AUD $5.00
Horizon 355 Angler & Yamaha F20b vs 15 hp 4

Compares the Yamaha F20b & Yamaha 15 hp 4 strokes on the Horizon 355 Angler Peter Webster & Ruth Cunningham 9
AUD $5.00
Imported US Trailerboat Invasion - Value?

With a US boats flooding the Australian market what is good value? Darren Sheil/Peter Webster 6
AUD $5.00
Mako Family MPV

Very practical report about getting a multi-purpose vessel (MPV) that needed to do half a dozen different jobs to keep the family happy. Tim Paul 5
AUD $5.00
My Imported Boat Experience

The hows, whys, and is it worth it story about importing a boat from USA. Steve Jones 9
AUD $5.00
New Tricks In An Old game

There are many people trawling the internet sites and classifieds trying to find the proverbial 'diamond' in the rough; some hidden gem of a boat where the owner has passed away . . it happens, but more often, successful buying is through methodical research . . . . PW 13
AUD $5.00
PFD's - Life Jackets

A run down on Life Jackets (PFD's) on the Australian market in 2008. Includes the various types available - inflatable or normal; what size or category -Kids through to large adults and how to wear/fit PFD's correctly. Peter Webster & Ruth Cunningham 11
AUD $5.00
Pressed Vs Plate Alloy

Is one better than the other? Neil Dunstan 6
AUD $5.00
Quintrex 670 Diesel

One of the most controversial of the consumer report series, this is the final wrap of F&Bs Quintrex Diesel Project boat. Peter Webster 11
AUD $5.00
Re-Thinking How We Buy Boats

Interesting feature by PW combining DIY boatbuilding strategies with real world thinking about available time, budgets, physical space, and all the other issues that make DIY (in theory) such a good, but often impractical solution. Here's the solution! PW 10
AUD $5.00
Repowering Cats with 4 Stroke Outboards

As 4 Stroke outboards become lighter repowering a second hand catamaran can give the boatowner an excellent result. Peter Webster 6
AUD $5.00
Savage Boats Return To The Fray (2009)

No doubt Telwater had the bit between their teeth in 2009 - here's another example of their determination to divide and conquer the market place. And in truth, it must be acknowledged, the strategy has worked a treat. PW & Supplied 5
Scintillating Sixes

Such an array of 6 m boats available - how do you choose? PW's checklist of features when buying a 6 m craft Peter Webster 10
AUD $5.00
Seafarer Release 2008 Range

When Haines Signature purchased the iconic Seafarer range from Lindsay Fry in 2007-2008, everyone breathed a sigh of relief that these excellent boats had 'gone to a good family' - but nobody (then) saw the GFC coming, and the boats are now stored away for future use. PW & Supplied 5
Secondhand Boats-Research, Info and Best Options

Practical tips to consider when a buying second hand boat. Darren Shiel 5
AUD $5.00
Side Console 485 (2014) Survey P1 of 2

First leg of a comprehensive 14 page review of the top side consoles on the market. here are some superb craft shown here in one of the most hotly contested segments of the market PW 8
AUD $5.00
Side Console 485 (2014) Survey P2 of 2

Another six pages of side consoles - making this one of the most complex (and interesting) segments for the consumer to contemplate. PW 6
AUD $5.00
Side Consoles - Hunky 485's (from 2007)

Face off at 485 m Side Consoles. PW considers the top models. Peter Webster 7
AUD $5.00
Side Consoles 485 (2014) Intro

'Straight Down The Middle' is the actual title of this introduction describing the main difference (and preference) between the tradition centre console (that you have to walk around) and the more fashionable and practical side console. PW 11
AUD $5.00
So, You Want To Buy A New Quinnie? (2009)

It's always interesting to look back a little - if only to study the progression of the top models' design and fitting out progress. PW & RC 9
Stacer Release 2008-9 Range

Whilst it's now a fair way behind the market, it is still interesting look back and study the evolution of these craft. PW & Supplied 4
Summer Safety Review

Gearing up for the summer boating months always involves a sometimes depressing review of your safety equipment - some of which might need upgrading or even replacement. But the law - and common sense - makes this a compulsory situation. PW 5
AUD $5.00
The Six Metre Cuddies (2014) P1 of 2

Comprehensive round-up of the bigger fibreglass (GRP) 6.0m cuddies PW 8
AUD $5.00
The Six Metre Cuddies (2014) P2 of 2

Comprehensive roundup of the six metre fibreglass (GRP) cuddies. PW 12
AUD $5.00
The Sixes - Spoiled For choice (2014)

This is the feature article that accompanied the actual survey (shown here as P1 and P2 of 2) updating trends and reasoning behind the these high-end half cabs or cuddies. PW provides a detailed analysis of the features consumers should be looking for in a 6.0m rig. PW 10
AUD $5.00
Understanding The Great Fuel Dilemma

Discusses the issues surrounding modern petrol and diesel fuel in relation to Australian boatowners Peter Webster 7
AUD $5.00
Wet Nomads

Following Di Ross's "Cuppa Tea" PW discusses what extras manufacturers need to modernise boats. Peter Webster 12
AUD $5.00
Yamaha 15 hp Comparo

F&B compare the Yamaha 15 hp 2 stroke and the Yamaha 15 hp 4 stroke Peter Webster 9
AUD $5.00
Yamaha 250 hp 4 stroke Vs 2 x Yamaha 115 hp 4 st

The question is - One engine or Two? Compares the Yamaha 250 hp 4 stroke versus twin Yamaha 115 hp 4 strokes on the Cruise Craft 685 Peter Webster 9
AUD $5.00
Yamaha 60 hp 2 stroke Vs Yamaha 60 hp 4 Stroke

Is it worth changing your Yamaha 60 hp 2 stroke to a Yamaha 60 hp 4 stroke (see Engine Tests) Peter Webster 10
AUD $5.00
Yellowfin 5700, 6200 + 6700 Released (2009)

The release of the Yellowfins generated a great deal of excitement around the traps. It showed that Telwater could easily build outstanding offshore platies if they put their minds to it - and that's exactly what they did. PW & Supplied 4
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