Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable

By: Greg Adams, 2007


Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable
Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable
Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable
Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable
Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable
Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable
Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable Looking back: Gemini Waverider 505 Inflatable

Gemini has been making full inflatable and rigid inflatable boats since 1982, originally used in the challenging seas off South Africa’s Cape of Good Hope. They’ve since become highly regarded around the world and the Waverider series is the flagship of the range.

Out on the water we gunned a test model to its top speed of 75kph and it offered an impressive ride. It’s remarkably dry, stable and soft, thanks to the bow’s 30-degree "V" The tubes also act as shock absorbers by flexing with the waves.

These are made from Hypalon; resistant to UV rays and most chemicals, fuel and oil, and come with a 10-year guarantee. The 505 uses the heavy-duty 1670 spec – the same as the military.

The Waverider has a buoyancy-filled fibreglass hull giving added shape and strength, and it means it’ll resist sinking even if the tubes are deflated. The hull has "shark fin" rubbing strakes, which further aid performance and the soft ride, and is fitted with a 30mm wide aluminium keel strip. This strip allows the craft to be run up on the beach or if you miss the trailer when recovering the boat. The strip also provides a strong backbone to the Waverider, and company literature says it can be lifted by the bow eye.

The interior is has ample room –the recommended maximum is 11 people – and is self-draining, with two outlets at the stern. Beneath the deck there’s storage and a 70-litre fuel tank. The bow has a built-in anchor locker, which can take a seat on top.

The 505 had a jockey console, which covers the battery and electronics. The ski arch – which has rod holders – comes as standard. The rear seat has additional storage underneath and can be removed for diving purposes. Our test boat was included hydraulic steering and a Navman fishfinder.

Fitted with a 90hp Yamaha, the Waverider cruises comfortably at 30mph – the maximum recommended power is 115hp. Efficiency-wise, you’re looking at about 15 litres an hour for general use with the fitted 90hp.

Out of the water, the 505 makes for easy towing, the boat and trailer weigh in at a combined 900kg.

Geminis are built to withstand tough working environments and, over the years, have certainly proven their worth. The 505 is also a capable all-rounder, whether as a speed boat for pleasure and water skiing, a dive boat, or a yacht tender. Fun and funky to look at, it’s safe and stable, and handles very well.

Facts at a glance

LOA: 5.05m
LENGTH INSIDE: 4.3m
BEAM OVERALL: 2.2m
BEAM INSIDE: 1.2m
DEADRISE: 30 °
TUBE DIAMETER: 460mm
WEIGHT: 220kg

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