This interview is of Roan and Karrie who have a Gemini 3000 catamaran and are sailing the Great Loop. Please follow along their adventures on their YouTube channel here.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and the boat?
Roan and Karrie Poulter, The Wayward Travelers – we’re on a 5 year Adventure plan that consists of Motorcycles across the U.S. Trans America Trail, Van from Prudhoe Bay to Ushuaia on the Pan American Highway, Sailing the Great Loop and Bahamas in our 1988 Gemini Catamaran, Backpacking Europe and taking the Trans Siberian Railway before Backpacking Asia.
Why did you choose a Gemini 3000?
Fits in a single wide slip, massive online community for questions and wisdom, we got a great price and with an ample salon we felt we gained liveability.
When was she launched?
In 1989 as a Charter. When we got her she was on the Hard for approaching 5 years.
Where was she built?
Massachusetts I believe
What do you know about the builder?
Performance Catamarans has a cool story. The Gemini was conceived after the companies mold for a foldable Trimaran caught on fire. This was their hail mary and it became the best selling Catamaran of all time.
What’s the best thing about her?
Because she’s a little older, there’s more teak than the newer models. Less of a Clorox bottle, more of a 1970’s Leisure suit lounge. All joking aside, we’ve found the woodwork to have held up very well and polished like a new penny.
What is the smartest thing the builder or designer did?
They learned from their mistakes, improvements owners made and an evolving market. Every year and even every boat seems a little different as they incorporated good ideas. My center post under the mast was removed in later models which have a U shaped couch.
What would you change if anything?
I don’t care for my davit setup, but it might be post market. My Dinghy smacks the outboard.
Do you have any criticisms of her?
Some of the bilges could have been finished better. But she’s held up awfully well, she is after all 32 this year.
What type of sailing or what cruising ground is the Gemini 3000 perfect for?
With her dual swing keels and rudders on kick backs she was made for shallow sailing. I feel comfortable sailing into 4’ waters and anchoring so shallow I can walk her in.
Is she easy to maintain?
As with any middle aged lady, she’s got some signs of age. The carpet took extensive cleaning to get rid of old boat smells. Lots of teak means lots to work on and it feels never ending at times.
Is she easy to sail short-handed?
She’s not rigged to sail solo. But two is plenty and we’ve never needed more hands. To shorten sail? Reefing is easy with our Mack sail setup and lazy jacks. Easy to reach the boom? Solar panels make this a little harder along our custom cockpit cover, but with all the lines run inside the boom it’s pretty easy.
What’s she like in heavy weather / a blow / big seas?
Small cats aren’t really made for that and I haven’t tried her.
Any problems with bridge deck slamming?
Gentlemen do not sail to weather. I haven’t had it in my experience, but never had her in blue water.
How does she sail in light winds?
Stubbornly and has a tendency to slip past the correct point of sail.
How does she sail close hauled?
I would honestly say that she doesn’t, though I have only sailed her a handful of times.
How about on a reach, heading down wind?
This is where she is beautiful, full sails, even wing on wing. Unfortunately we don’t have a screecher or a Spinnaker, but wish we did.
Typically, what’s your average speed on passage?
I can make 6 knots in a nice wind.
What’s she like under power? Speed, maneuverability?
I have a 60HP Mercury outboard, oversized but it came with the boat. Pushes her up to 7, but 6 comfortably and reasonable fuel efficiency. I use a rigging system from rudders to turn the motor, it works okay. She can be slow to turn at low speed, marinas can be ugly with prevailing winds.
Is she easy to dock, what’s the visibility like?
Great if you’re going backwards. Nice to have two people, in fact I don’t know it could be done singly.
What is she like on the hook?
Lots to blow about in a Cat, but she rocks much less than a mono.
Is she comfortable down below?
I think she’s great. I’m 5’11” tall and I can stand up at the entrance to the salon and below. Two berths give guests some privacy. Front berth is spacious and still enough room to entertain without unmaking a bed.
What is the headroom like (hulls or up in salon)?
Both are fine for me.
Is she good for hosting guests?
If they’re okay with sharing a head.
How is the storage space on the boat?
More storage space than the weight she can afford to take without suffering performance.
What kind of modifications have you done and why?
Updated electronics because while the 80’s were rad, I like to know where I am, going, what’s around me and lights that don’t suck the batteries dry.
Any plans for further customization?
If you were to swap her for another boat, what would that be? Or maybe you wouldn’t swap her?
I think she’s perfect for us right now. Big enough to host guests without making them so comfortable they refuse to leave. I could dream of a blue water boat capable of circumnavigating.
Anything else you would add to help people thinking of buying one?
Buy it right($), look real hard at the power (Inboard and outboard). Everything else seems to be mostly cosmetic and upgrading. Haven’t heard of a nightmare purchase on any Gemini forum.