• Tristram 881 Offshore

    State-of-the-art, class-leading & versatile offshore capabilities

“With the full-length keel, well-researched hull design, along with the relatively heavy displacement of this craft, the ride is comfortable and gives you a strong sense of security.”.

– Dive New Zealand Magazine

Fully moulded boarding platform. Seal-free to keep engine bay dry.

Class-leading cockpit space for diving, fishing & entertaining.

Hardtop hatches for natural cabin light, airflow & great for seagull spotting

Boasts the ability to be drystacked, moored or trailered between New Zealand’s coastlines, offering owners a wide variety of boating options.

  • Brochure

    Click here to download the Tristram 881 Offshore brochure

  • 881 Owners’ Photos

    Click here for a feed of #Tristram881Offshore photos from Tristram Marine and 881 Owners

Tristram 881 Offshore TDI

Dimensions & Capacities
Overall Length 9.25m / 30’3″
Overall Beam 2.50m / 8’2″
Deadrise 21 deg
Underfloor Fuel* 390 Litres
Water Capacity* 140 Litres
MerCruiser Engine VW 260hp 3.0 L V6 TDI
Overall Length on Trailer 9.80m / 32’1″
Overall Beam on Trailer 2.50m / 8’2″
Overall Height on Trailer* 3.04m / 9’11”
Overall Height on Trailer (incl rocket launcher)* 3.32m / 10’11”
Overall Height on Trailer (incl radar)* 3.44m / 11’3″
Overall Weight on Trailer* 3500kg

*approximate or variable figure

Standard Features

Mercruiser VW 260hp 3.0 TDI Gen 2 diesel engine
Mercruiser Bravo 3 Sterndrive (twin prop)
Freshwater engine cooling
Mercury analogue gauges x 4
Mercury smartcraft multi-function digital gauges x 2
Power assist steering

12V Socket
5-spoke stainless steel steering wheel
Bilge pumps & fittings (automatic) x 3
Built-in electric trim tabs with auto-retract & LED indicators
Dual batteries with isolating switch
Electric windscreen wiper (self park / driver’s side)
Fire extinguisher
Fusion on-board entertainment with Bluetooth
High gloss black dash with vinyl top lip
Self launching rope chain capstan with anchor docking fairlead
VHF & aerial

Hardtop mounted all-round white light
LED boarding lights x 2
LED cockpit lights x 2
LED hardtop pelmet strip lighting
LED overhead lighting x 4
Port & starboard navigation lights

Alloy fuel tank underfloor with fuel filter (390 L / midship)
Stern cleats x 2, midship cleats x 2 & anchor cleats x 2
Delta anchor, warp 70m & chain 20m
Fibreglass moulded keel
Fresh water tanks (2 x 70 L)
Full length brass keel strip
Gelcoated hull colour band in black
Hot water cylinder (16 L)
Large bow rail – stainless steel
Moulded boarding platform, seal free to keep engine bay dry
Recessed telescopic boarding ladder & handle
Vinylester hull laminate for mooring advantages

3 facet toughened curved glass windscreen with double mullion supports for superior strength
Ceiling panels for sound absorption in iced-white vinyl
Stainless steel fore-aft grab rails
Hardtop hatches for natural cabin light & ventilation x 2
Moulded top & side flares for wind deflection
Sliding glass side windows
Vertical stainless steel rear grab handles – port & starboard

Automatic self draining cockpit
Built in baitboard with accessory storage beneath
Centre removable fish bins x 2
Live bait tank
Marine carpet from seats forward – recessed & fixed
Rear cockpit pull out shower
Recessed teak cockpit coaming
Side pocket shelf with rod storage
Stainless steel side coaming & stern rod holders x 8
Tallon sockets inc drink holders x 2

Cutlery, plate & pot draws
Electric drawer fridge
Galley sink & tapware (hot & cold)
Hot water system
Single gas cooker & gas bottle (AS/NZS 5601 compliant)

Cabin lights x 2
Cabin shelving/backrest upholstered
Cabin squabs with storage beneath
Cabin teak cupboard
Foredeck access hatch x 1
Marine carpet – recessed & fixed
Port & starboard cabin windows
Port side cabin entrance shelving
Sliding lockable cabin door
Toilet – Portapotti

Premium marine grade vinyl upholstery (owners colour choice)
Port side back-to-back seats with storage beneath
Starboard side back-to-back seats with storage beneath
Side coaming bolsters in owner’s colour choice
Side panel linings for sound absorption in iced-white vinyl
Sliding helm seat

Available Extras

Kingsway Enduro tandem trailer with ‘Sensor brake’ system, fresh-water flushing attachments, multi-rollers & registration/WOF
Balex automatic boat loading system
Electric ‘Superwinch’ on trailer
Spare wheel & bracket
Trailer walkboard
Trailer lock
Engine flag

USB Socket
CTEK battery charger fitted
GPS/Sounder (up to 16 inch)
House battery upgrade x 2 6V
Hydraulic steering for autopilot
Windscreen wiper – passenger side

LED forward facing spotlight on hardtop
LED rear facing floodlight on hardtop
LED cockpit under-coaming (blue strip)
LED underwater lights x 2 (blue)

Dredge boom rod holders 90° x 2
Game poles – Ocean Blue
Insulated catch bag
Rocket launcher – stainless steel
Saltwater deckwash

3 in 1 Platform station in stainless steel
Fibreglass baitboard (suits two positions)
Dinghy rack in stainless steel

All-over storage cover
Cockpit road cover & quarter clears
Canopy extension incl clears & backdrop
Ice-grit stoneguard

Electric toilet upgrade
V-Berth infill

Cobb Premier Plus cooker
Cockpit table with leg
Engine box squab
Engine box port/stb infill squabs & bases
Rear facing hardtop grab handles x 2
Recessed & removable cockpit carpet
SeaDek flooring in cockpit
Tallon accessory mount & cup holder (additional)

Review - Boating

Breaking the Mould

Boating New Zealand Magazine

When it was first revealed at the Hutchwilco Boat Show, it won the award for GRP Fishing Boat Open.

The 881 Offshore is targeted at serious fishers and divers, but true to the Tristram Boats’ philosophy, it doesn’t sacrifice comfort, performance, style or build quality to fishability, and it should prove just as popular with nonfishing family members.

This is a stunning-looking trailerboat. The review boat was sitting on an excellent Enduro trailer, and at around 3.5 tonnes as reviewed, a good trailer is extremely important for safety and stress-free driving.

The Enduro trailer will take Eleanor north to her new home at Marsden Cove. It’s a premium dual-axle example with a Sensabrake electric-over-hydraulic braking system on both axles and an electric winch.

Some 881 buyers will doubtless opt to keep their boats in a dry stack somewhere, so Tristram Marine offers the boat with or without a trailer.

Tristram Marine principal Lance Fink towed Eleanor behind his Audi Q7 from Hamilton to Auckland, where we rendezvoused with her new owner Jeff. It’s a big rig on a trailer, so Lance was careful to keep the 881’s beam to 2.5m so there are no worries about an over-width trailer.

For Jeff, this was the first opportunity to try his new boat on the water, although he’d visited Tristram’s Hamilton factory on several occasions while the boat was being built. He’s recently returned to New Zealand with his British wife after 30 years working overseas, and describes the process of buying a boat from the Finks as “…a pleasurable experience. We’ve become friends and we feel like part of the
Fink family.”

Eleanor is Jeff’s second Tristram, replacing a Yamaha V8-outboard powered 781 “which I loved, but we simply wanted something bigger.”

Jeff has a beach house at Langs Beach, about 120km north of Auckland, but will keep Eleanor on a dry dock at Marsden Cove Marina a few kilometres to the north for convenience.

TDI diesel power
Jeff is something of a V8 car buff – Eleanor is named after the Ford Mustang in the classic movie Gone in 60 Seconds – so he had never considered a diesel option for his new boat. But with the recent addition of lightweight, high-performance VW TDI diesel engines to the Cummins-Mercruiser inboard line-up, that changed.

The new CMD TDIs are available in 3.0-litre V6 or 4.2-litre V8 configurations, and are based on the high-performance VW diesels that power various Audi and Volkswagen models, including the A6, Q7, Touareg and Passat. The V6 265hp version is 100kg lighter than comparable marine diesels and uses half the fuel of some V8 diesels of similar horsepower. Mated to a Mercruiser Bravo Three leg, it’s a perfect match for the boat.

As it stands, the engine installation is especially tidy. Like modern cars there’s not much to see under the plastic cover atop the engine, but the water strainer and various service points are easy to access.

Tristram has built-in an access panel to aid servicing so you simply cut away the white sealant to remove it when required.

Smooth operator
First impressions on turning the key and firing up the TDI were of exceptional smoothness. There is simply none of the rattle and clatter one expects from a marine diesel. This complements the 881 perfectly, since it’s such a smooth, soft-riding performer. That the 265hp TDI also provides a near 40-knot top speed, brilliant acceleration and masses of torque despite a relatively modest 3.0-litre capacity, is testament to how far diesel engine technology has come.

The 881 sped along through sloppy seas left over by a dying north-east blow. Inside the boat we were comfortable sitting or standing, with plenty of handholds to choose from and the boat’s high gunwales offering wonderful security in any seaway. The seats are form-fitting and supportive with the forward-facing buckets offering excellent vision through the three-pane, toughened glass windscreen.

The helm seat is adjustable fore and aft, allowing the helmsman to drive standing up if desired, and footrests are well-positioned. Indeed, the ergonomics in general are very good and nothing is a stretch or tucked away where it’s difficult to get at.

The modern dash console works well with ample room for 12 or 16 inch displays – and the engine gauges are at eye level under the eyebrow.

Trim tabs are integrated into the hull and proved easy to use. They were necessary at times to counter the wind, but in general the boat is nice and stable, its chines working well while underway and
at rest.

The Tristram 881 Offshore has a 21° deadrise aft but is much finer forward, slicing through the sea. She remained dry, giving the wipers little work despite lumpy seas and plenty of wind, and she impressed with her soft ride, especially in the hands of a skilled driver like Lance.

The leg was very responsive to trim inputs, so you had to be a little wary not to overdo things. For the most part Eleanor ran nicely with about a third trim out showing on the gauge; more trim was only required for full speed runs.

Cavitation was non-existent, except when trimmed right out, and you could confidently throw the boat into a highspeed turn without worrying too much about trimming the leg in.

Acceleration is excellent – from a standstill or anywhere in the rev range – and there’s a definite push in the back once the turbo kicks in, although it’s less noticeable than some turbodiesels I’ve experienced. The TDI applies its thrust in a very linear fashion.

Above all, she was quiet, with very little of the harshness sometimes associated with diesel installations. There’s some induction noise early and the whirr of the turbocharger, but as the figures show, this is a relatively quiet boat, especially for a hardtop where the engine noise tends to reverberate around the enclosed space. The hardtop’s padded vinyl ceiling panels must go some way to dampening engine noise, but it’s impressive nonetheless.

Handsome hardtop
The proportions of the handsome hardtop are just perfect and don’t overwhelm the rest of the boat, although it’s 9m overall, which helps!

Inside the hardtop, things are pretty right as well. The moulded seat bases are actually part of the deck mould. The 881 has a fully-moulded liner and the spaces between the hull and liner are foam-filled for safety and noise suppression. The aft-facing seats lift up to reveal masses of stowage space and long items can slide up along the hull’s sides.

On the starboard side there’s a fridge under the helm seat, while on the port side there is a series of drawers, a moulded sink and foldaway tap fitting, plus an ingeniously-positioned two-burner hob beneath the passenger seat (which tilts forward when it’s time to cook).

This boat is as comfortable and family-friendly as any boat in the Tristram range, perhaps more so because of its size, but it’s a sportfisher nonetheless and proves the two things needn’t be mutually exclusive.

A fishing-diving cockpit
As befits an offshore fisher, Tristram Marine has paid plenty of attention to getting the cockpit area right. High padded sides are one aspect, while the well designed transom with its integrated bait tank, large bait well, rod holders, transom lockers and washdown facilities is another.

The cockpit sheds water into a sump via small drains in each corner, their grates cut out to make the numbers ‘881’, a nice little detail.

There are rodholders in the teakcapped coamings, across the transom, and the removable bait station has another four. The bait table can be positioned either on the transom or out on the swim platform, where it fits onto the removable stainless steel staple. Slightly unusually, if only because they are fashionable (but often poorly-designed), there is no rocket launcher on Jeff’s boat, though Tristram can supply one if required. It’s hardly missed, since there is ample rod storage elsewhere in the boat including under the coamings above the side shelves.

An unavoidable feature with sterndrive installations is the engine box, but in the 881 it’s neither overly large nor too intrusive, with good access either side to the transom corners. A squab on the engine box is a comfortable place to sit and keen anglers will use the top of the engine box to spread out lure bags and tackle boxes or to mount a game chair. Tristram provides an extra squab for the corner, turning the engine box into a sunbed, and it’s also a good place to sit when gearing up for a dive.

There’s plenty of room in the cockpit to kit up and ample stowage for dive bottles and other diving paraphernalia. There’s a pull-out dive ladder on the swim platform.

A deep underfloor locker is equipped with two moulded fibreglass pullout bins, perfect for bulky items wet or dry, or for holding the catch.

Although the cockpit is well-appointed for fishing, there’s also the swim platform which you can stand on in calm conditions. A stainless steel staple offers something to hang onto or lean against, as well as somewhere to fit the baitboard, keeping the worst of any fishy mess outside the boat, and it’s the perfect spot to mount the barbecue. Equipped with davits, it can also secure a small dinghy.

The 881 is quite suitable for overnight expeditions or longer, something Jeff says he will consider in future. There’s 390 litres of fuel underfloor, so she has the range to do some serious exploring, and as Jeff noted, diesel is available ‘off the wharf’ in many places where petrol is not. There’s also ample storage for drinking water and engine-heated hot showers. The water filler is inside the boat, so there’s no confusing it with the diesel filler on the outside.

The 881 has dispensed with a separate toilet cubicle (still an option), relying on closing the sliding cabin door for privacy, and in practice, this works fine. The plumbed toilet sits inside an easy-clean moulded box (which contains any ‘spills’), the top of which makes a handy chart table or somewhere to put a glass of rum while swinging on the pick in a calm anchorage somewhere.

With the galley in the hardtop and no toilet cubicle, the hardtop and cockpit have not had to give space away to the cabin. The lined cabin boasts vee berths of a generous size (with infill to make a double) and is well served by storage cubbies and shelving.

Access to the foredeck is via the forward hatch, or by sidling around the hardtop which has convenient handrails along the roof for this purpose.

Another bonus of having the galley inside the hardtop is that cooking smells are carried away through the overhead hatches (two) in the hardtop or sliding side windows rather than lingering in the cabin. The cabin door contains a series of moulded-in storage cubbies along its leading edge, which is an innovative use of space.

Everywhere you look, inside this boat and out, there is an attention to detail and a level of finishing that few production boatbuilders can match.

It’s a fishing boat, sure, but it is still a luxury maxi-trailerboat that the whole family can enjoy whether they’re fishers or not.

The 881 Offshore is competent, good-looking, well-equipped, and a wonderful match for the V6 CMD TDI, offering all the advantages of diesel power – economy, torque, reliability and longevity – with few, if any, of the disadvantages (weight, noise, vibration and cost).

Of course, you can have this boat with petrol power, or perhaps even the V8 TDI, but really, there’s no need for more power judging by our experience on the Waitemata.

Review - Dive

An ideal boat for four divers out on a one-day dive excursion and an absolutely superb boat for two divers on an extended long-weekend trip

Dive New Zealand Magazine

Arriving at Orams Marine Village Boat Park in Auckland’s Westhaven Marina, I met up with Kingsley Fink, one of the sons of Lance and Bronwyn Fink, the owners of Hamilton-based Tristram Marine. We had arranged to go out on Tristram’s top-of-the-line fibreglass 881 Offshore.

The 881 was in the water alongside a finger pier, ready to load up with dive gear for our dive out in the Hauraki Gulf. Gear storage was a breeze with more than ample room for dive bags and dive tanks, conveniently secured in an ingenious and removable side-rack arrangement developed by Tristram.

Although weather-wise it wasn’t shaping up to be the best day for diving, with a strong NE wind and threatening rain forecast, the sea conditions were certainly going to allow me to see how this Tristram Offshore 881 handled a seaway. Cruising out of Auckland harbour with a fair chop on the water soon made me realise that dive site options were going to be limited. However, we felt that the SW side of the Noises, which I hadn’t dived in years, might be a possibility – and I was also curious to see if the scallop beds I remembered were still prolific.

As we motored down the harbour, Kingsley and I had the opportunity to chat about the 881, his role in the company and about Tristram Marine in general. I soon discovered that Kingsley is a keen scuba diver and we instantly formed a bond, which opened the door for a candid discussion about what makes a great dive boat.

As we rounded North Head and set a course for the Noises, it soon became apparent that a dive out there was unlikely and with a freshening wind against tide we hit very confused and rough sea conditions as we opened up the 881 heading into Rangitoto Channel.

Maybe the diving wasn’t going to be great, but I realised that this was going to be an ideal opportunity to see how the Tristram Offshore 881 would perform in a rough sea.

Kingsley was more than willing to open up the latest Mercruiser Volkswagen 3.0 V6 diesel inboard; which quietly revved up as he hit the throttle.

A confused sea with waves running around half to one metre at times is a great sea to find out how any boat performs. The 881 didn’t disappoint and I was immediately aware that Kingsley was fully confident in the boat’s design, solid construction and ability to handle what we were about to throw at her.

Whichever way we pointed her – head on to the waves, beam on, quartering off the port bow or running with the waves off the stern quarter – the long keel hull handled the sea beautifully. This was turning into a fun adventure!

The Fink family have been involved in boat building for generations and over the years they have built up a formidable reputation for manufacturing high quality, innovatively designed fibreglass boats from the 581 Prima M2 up to the 881 Offshore we were on.

Wherever you look while on board, quality of finish and attention to detail is in evidence. When I look at a boat, I am probably much pickier than the average punter, but try as I might to find fault with this craft, it was hard to find anything of note to complain about.

Although the weather gods had decreed this was not going to be an ideal dive day, we did find a nice sheltered cove on the lee side of Rakino Island – proving that in just about any weather conditions, dive adventure can be found in the Hauraki Gulf! Locating what looked to be a good spot with the help of the 12″ Garmin GPS/depth sounder, I began to suit up.

I couldn’t help being impressed with the size of the cockpit, which is ample for up to four divers who could, in a pinch, all suit up at the same time. However, a two-plus-two suiting up schedule would be more logical and practical.

Getting ready for a dive on the 881 was more like being on a small launch rather than a large trailer boat! The inboard engine cover provided a great area for sitting while gearing up prior to exiting the boat.

Kingsley explained that they’d set up the boat for optional dive entry methods: (1) A back roll off either side or (2) A stride entry off the stern swim platform. I tried both water entries, and although both worked fine and the guys at Tristram have ingeniously thought about the layout to make a side backroll entry relatively easy, by means of a conveniently-located foot step and grab handle I found a stride entry off the stern
more convenient.

The large swim platform, extending across the entire stern, is easily accessed from the cockpit and provides an ideal entry platform, facilitated by the very clever and ruggedly constructed waist-high inverted U-shaped stainless steel rail at the extreme stern of the swim platform. This rail also doubles as the support for the removable and very ample bait board/rod holder assembly. This can be easily removed or repositioned whether diving or fishing. This rail provided a secure support when standing on the swim platform, either fully kitted up, while getting ready for a dive or removing your gear after the dive.

Tristram Marine continually customise different packages to suit all applications and requests. This ‘can do’, customer-focused attitude is definitely a hallmark of the Tristram experience.

As we headed back to Auckland with a moderate following sea, Kingsley handed me the helm so that I could get a first-hand feel how the 881 performed. In a word – superbly!

With the full-length keel, well-researched hull design, along with the relatively heavy displacement of this craft, the ride is comfortable and gives you a strong sense of security.

Idling into Westhaven Marina, I pondered my ‘gut feeling’ impressions of this Tristram 881 Offshore. In a nutshell: a luxurious boat more akin to a small launch than a trailer boat.

An ideal boat for four divers out on a one-day dive excursion and an absolutely superb boat for two divers on an extended long-weekend trip, with spacious V-berth bed, cooking, freezer and sink set up. Now that I know that Kingsley is a keen diver, I’m hoping for an invite to do weekend excursion in the future; perhaps for a dive adventure out to Great Barrier?

Please note – some images may show optional equipment.

For pricing and further information please contact Tristram Marine on +64-7-849-5225 or online using our web-enquiry form.

Hardtops in the Tristram Range

Tristram 881 Offshore Owners’ Photos