Sea Of Promise

Reviewed: See Jay 680 Pursuit & Yamaha 225

Respected alloy boat builder Sea Jay has come up with a serious bluewater sportfishing craft. Jim Harnwell reports.

BUNDABERG-based boat builder Sea Jay is probably best known for producing a range of affordable fishing orientated tinnies, runabouts and modest sized cabin boats. However, this big new plate alloy beast propels Sea Jay into the serious offshore sportfishing territory currently dominated by brands like Noble Super vee, Bar Crusher, Stabicraft and AMM.

Boat Fishing was given the opportunity for a test run in the 680 Pursuit when we recently visited Yamaha’s Brett Hampson and Glenn Gibson at their flash new offices on the banks of the Brisbane River.

Glenn was using the brand new 680 as part of an ambitious program involving testing a wide range of hulls with Yammie donks in order to generate much-needed performance and fuel data that boat buyers could use as a guide when looking around at a new boat/engine package.


Sea Jay’s 680 is the sort of boat every keen offshore family fisho would love to own. It’s big and stable enough for serious bluewater fishing and has room and features that make it ideal for relaxed days spent enjoying the water with the wife and kids. While a hefty boat, total tow weight is relatively light at just over 2400kg. Thus the rig is suitable to be towed, when sitting on a quality tandem axle trailer with a suitable braking system, by a crew cab ute like a Hilux or a medium 4WD such as a Pajero or Prado.

I particularly liked the big, open self-draining rear deck, which boasted plenty of room for four or five boofy blokes to enjoy fishing; either casting, jigging, trolling or bottom bashing.  A big livewell was positioned starboard near the transom door, above the marlin board and folding steps; a good sized alloy bait station (optional) with rod holders positioned to maximise your trolling spread was fitted to the transom amidships.

The test boat featured optional seat boxes with a sink, tackle boxes and rear seat. Personally speaking, I’d probably opt for more basic pedestal seats to maximise fishing space. The cabin was a good size – more than suitable for kids to sleep and play in and with plenty of room for storage; a chemical toilet is an option. I’d like to see bigger windows, however.

I liked the dash console which featured more than enough room for a thru-mounted 10 or 12-inch sounder/plotter plus all the gauges, buttons and controls which modern boats tend to come with. The side mounted controls for the Yammie 225 were perhaps a tad cramped for my liking. Maybe a binnacle control would have been a better option?

A very sturdy aluminium roof, which can be optioned up with an eight-rod rocket launcher and with room for thru-mounted radios, is positioned over the seats and forward controls. A low windscreen offers some protection and you could probably get a set of clears fitted as well (although they don’t seem to be listed as an option). I’d much rather have seen the cabin fully enclosed (like the Stabicraft SC series or Bar Crusher’s 640HT).

The foredeck is large and relatively flat, with copious amounts of non-slip material (obviously designed so crew can enjoy a bit of sunbaking when the fishing’s quiet). A reasonable sized hatch is centrally located in the foredeck, above a good big anchor well, which in the test boat featured one of the nifty Stress Free anchor winches.

Constructed of 5mm plate alloy (bottom and transom) and with 4mm sides, the 680 Pursuit is part of Sea Jay’s Plate Xtreme range, which also includes the Preda-King centre consoles. The Pursuit features a beam of 2.49m and LOA of 7.1m. On the water it certainly felt stable and it performed well cruising and at high speed. We travelled down the Brisbane River and out into Moreton Bay, looking for some swells and chop. Unfortunately it was flat calm. Typical boat test weather. If we’d organised to go fishing, however, it would have been blowing 25 knots… So we turned around and roared back up the river.

I can’t report on how the boat handled in a bit of sea since we drove it on a millpond. All boats perform well on flat water – it’s when you get them in working hard in swells and confused seas that you really see how they perform – or don’t perform, as the case may be. On paper the deep vee hull (19.5 degrees at the transom), sharp bow and solid plate construction should mean that the 680 provides a good ride. I reckon you would cop spray in a cross wind over the low windshield and thus into your face (which is why I like enclosed cabs).

All in all, though, our very limited test run revealed that the Sea Jay 680 Pursuit is a good example of a no-nonsense, solidly built plate alloy sportfishing boat. The paintwork and graphics on the test boat were stylish yet understated and the welds and level of fit-out and finish were top class, as you’d expect from a quality builder like Sea Jay. The overall look of the boat was sporty with that sharp bow, extended front deck and solid roof line combing to present an attractively aggressive appeal. That said, it wasn’t perfect. No boat is. The transom floor near where rear scuppers are fitted had an awkward gap into which bits of bait and sinkers could easily fall – I’d like to see that designed more efficiently. And I really think it would be a much better boat all round with an enclosed cabin.

As mentioned, the test Sea Jay Pursuit 680 was fitted up with a 225 Yamaha four-stroke, the max rated horsepower for this hull. This 24-valve DOHC direct action 60 degree V6, which weighs in at 269kg, seemed an ideal match to the hull. I’ve been in similar sized boats when 200hp+ Yamahas four-strokes seem too big for the transom, but this one looked – and felt – absolutely fine.

Sea Jay recommends a single 175 or twin 115s for the Pursuit. The 225 Yammie at no stage felt overpowered or arse heavy. Like I said, it seemed the perfect match for this particular hull.

At WOT the Yammie pushed the Sea Jay to just under 40 knots. At that speed, it was using about 77 litres at hour. The Sea Jay has a fuel capacity of 360 litres so you could conceivably travel about 340 kilometres at top speed before running out of juice. At troll speed of about 8 knots at 2500rpm, you would burn 13.9 litres an hour and would have a range of 396km, which is a lot of trolling!

A fast-ish cruise of 26.5 knots at 4500rpm used just over 40 litres per hour (with a range of 442kms); a more sedate cruise of 22 knots at 4000rpm used just under 30 litres per hour and gave a range of 493kms. These fuel figures tie in pretty well with the recent 200hp engine tests I’ve been doing with the Fishing World Stabicraft 659 SC. Flat-out, the four 200hp engines I’ve tested so far average out at about 72 litres per hour with troll speed use around the 10 litre mark. So the Yamaha 225, seeing it is a bigger donk than those I’ve tested, is using comparable fuel in a similar (albeit slightly bigger) boat.

The test Sea Jay was fitted with a stock standard 19” M2 Black prop so it’s likely you would get better performance with a more specialised SS prop. The Sea Jay website ( has the full test report produced by Yamaha’s Glenn Gibson where you can see a complete listing of performance and fuel readings for this boat. It’s a really handy document and Yamaha – and, probably more importantly, Glenn – should be complimented on taking the time and effort to compile this sort of highly valuable info.  

Also via the dealer listing at you should be able to organise a test run of the Pursuit 680 fairly easily. If you get out in a bit of rough stuff, let me know: I’m keen to find out how the hull handles in a bit of swell, chop and slop.

Length: 6.8m

LOA: 7.1m


Tow weight: Approx 2400kg

Power: 175-225hp

Fuel: 360 litres

Price: See your Sea Jay dealer

Contact: Sea Jay on (07) 4152 2111;

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