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Gemini 105:

A Good Coastal Cruiser that has Evolved Over Time By Capt. Ron


with the boat, although I his boat may be unique in have never owned one. the history of boatbuildThe boat is not fast ing: a boat that has slowly despite claims to the contrary. and steadily evolved over time The Edel 35 catamaran (I as owners suggested improveowned one) sails much faster ments and the builder/designer than the Gemini, and the Edel incorporated those ideas that is not particularly fast as catahe considered worthwhile. That’s marans go. But the Gemini is what you have in the newer a cruiser. Is it fast compared model Geminis: Essentially, it’s a to your average everyday 34boat designed by committee. foot cruising monohull? That Originally, the boat was a depends on conditions. Going 30-foot cruising catamaran, and to weather, a well-sailed and it has now evolved into a 34well-designed 34-foot monofoot cruising catamaran with an hull probably carries the day. expressed emphasis on cruisReaching, though, is a differer—not that these boats aren’t ent story. Gemini 105s will raced, as they are. It’s just not get up there around 12 knots intended to be a racer. It’s in perfect reaching condidesigned as a cruiser, and the tions, and sailing at 8 to 9 boat does measure up very well knots is not uncommon. as a cruiser. The Gemini 105Mc under sail. Unfortunately, there are In my opinion, the Gemini Photo courtesy Performance Cruising. sea conditions that will pound 105 makes a fine near-coastal your Gemini relentlessly, and the noise of a wave slamcruiser. Some would disagree and point to trans-Atlantic ming the bridge deck is unnerving. It probably doesn’t do crossings as proof that the boat has big-ocean capability. the boat any good either. Slamming is a feature of any Many boats of all sizes and shapes have crossed oceans, but catamaran where bridge deck clearance has been sacrithat does not make a boat everyman’s ocean-crossing cruisficed on the altar of interior headroom. Even the larger er. I would also be the last to argue that near coastal condicruising cats, such as the Lagoons or Moorings cats, suffer tions are more benign than ocean-crossing conditions. from this malady. They’re not. But, at least in near coastal waters, when conditions get bad, you can duck back inside, seeking protectThe Gemini Rig ed waters. The rig and sailing systems are fine, if a little light, and the Why isn’t the Gemini an ocean-crossing design? It’s deck layout works okay, but be careful negotiating the nartoo small, number one. It can’t carry enough stuff, number row side decks. I’m also not a fan of the optional Gemini two, and it’s too lightly built to be a safe haven in a severe system for managing a cruising spinnaker or “screecher.” ocean storm. That large curved traveler track is just not far enough forI still think it’s a fine cruiser, provided you can pick ward to be optimal. A better arrangement is the folding your weather and not venture too far offshore for too long. bipod bowsprit that extends about six feet forward and yet The shallow draft centerboards and kick-up rudders allow folds back against the furled headsail for docking. Several navigating shallow anchorages—a plus for a coastal cruiser friends have this custom-made system, and it works very navigating an unmarked inlet to a secluded lagoon. Also, well without cluttering up the foredeck. the Gemini can fit into most marina slips, being a moneysaver over beamier catamarans. Liveability I’ve been on a number of Geminis and sailed (even The foredeck makes a great sunning platform, and at least raced) with friends on theirs. I did a delivery trip on a new one Gemini I’ve seen has a set of custom cushions for the boat from the factory in Annapolis to Florida, and I’ve foredeck that snap on, making a giant lounge. Interior cruised the Bahamas alongside one, so I’m pretty familiar 40

January 2007