Yacht-Finished Tender or Versatile Cottage Boat

Perhaps the best-known name in inflatable boats is Zodiac. The company has been a pioneer in developing these super-safe little boats for pleasure uses, commercial applications and for the demanding needs of search and rescue (SAR).

Hopefully you will never have an “extreme” need for yours, but the virtues and capabilities still pay dividends in everyday use.

Most current inflatable boats are referred to as “RIBs” – rigid hull inflatables. This gives the boat a rigid fibreglass hull and interior floor around which the inflatable tubes are secured. Our test boat, a Zodiac Bayrunner 500 has a very strong composite transom and all of the fibreglass work is hand lay-up.

The tube construction on Zodiacs can be of PVC materials or neoprene. The PVC “Strongon” tube material features a 1100 dernier double weave and weft Duotex material compared to single weave on some other less expensive boats, so the Zodiac is technically about double the strength. However, in spite of that, it’s not much heavier.

You can also get neoprene Hypalon tubes, again 1100 denier. These are favoured for SAR and commercial use. Also, in the blazing sun of the Caribbean, the neoprene will last longer due to having greater ultraviolet resistance.

At the time we wrote this, red and gray tubes were available; this summer Zodiac will also offer white. The tubes contain five chambers of air and each one has a bulkhead with a point, so you always get a pointed end to reduce water intrusion even if a tube was somehow punctured. And the manufacturer says that you can still maintain top speed! That’s a great safety feature.

If you’re not familiar with inflatable boats, you may be surprised to learn that the air pressure in the tubes is only 3.5 pounds per square inch. Sometimes people will increase that to 4 pounds per square inch to accommodate temperature fluctuations that reduce the pressure.

The tubes are removable when deflated which is a feature the SAR people like because they can get an extra set of tubes to ensure that even if it is damaged, the boat can return to service really fast.

The tubes deliver remarkable side-to-side stability for stepping in and Zodiac include many handholds and lifelines to help you. The side fittings and lifelines help to tie it up as required, or to secure cargo. These are very strong. There’s also a rub strip all the way around as well as a splash rail.

Our test boat was well equipped for cottage use or as a yacht tender although the lift points that let you pick it up on davits are optional.

The other exterior features, from the bow, include an anchor roller, centre-mounted cleat and navigation lights.

The interior gives you a comfortable place to sit in the bow and for activities like water skiing, putting the weight of a person forward helps the boat to plane off quickly. Under that area is anchor storage forward and space for other items.

The side console is part of the Bayrunner package on the “Pro” hull. This has storage inside and a removable 12.5 gallon fuel tank underneath. We really liked the grab bar design on the console and the sidebars let people get in or hang on at high speeds. The seat lifts for access to the fuel tank and there is a cooler as well.

Incidentally, the Zodiac Bayrunner comes with two rod holders and according to the Zodiac representative, fishhooks won’t snag the tubes. Because of those tubes, it’s an especially stable fishing platform.

Other features we liked include the sport steering wheel and what we felt were excellent ergonomics, making the boat very comfortable to drive and giving everyone plenty of legroom.

The Bayrunner 500 has a deep vee hull with 22° of deadrise and lift strakes for excellent rough water performance. Once underway at speed, most people will choose to sit on the main seat by the helm console. In terms of performance, this is such a light vessel considering the powerful 50 HP Yamaha, that with the passengers seated at the stern, 12.5 gallons of fuel and other luggage in the aft area, it puts the bow up in the air as you plane off.

Seating a person in the bow helps and an aftermarket accessory that many owners use to increase their load carrying capacity or improve their acceleration for skiing is a “fin” that mounts on the cavitation plate, greatly increasing lift at the stern.

The Zodiac Bayrunner 500 comes pre-rigged for Yamaha engines up to 70 HP, but they recommend 50 for most uses.

The Yamaha has lots of power and was impressively smooth and quiet at all speeds. It also has a quick and effective power trim but it operates so quietly that you have to look at the engine to see where it’s positioned!

Our test boat was equipped with Yamaha LCD type instruments that gave us a tachometer, speedometer, fuel management data as well as engine temperature. Steering was light and easily managed at all speeds and the windy day on the lake was child’s play to the Zodiac.

For safety, convenience and load-carrying in a compact package, the Bayrunner 500 has a lot to offer either the yachtsman or the cottager.

By Andy Adams

To see if this boat is available, go to www.boatcan.com to check listings!

Destinations

  • Prev
In the 1920s, a small cove in Canoe Bay was used as a shipping point and safe-haven for rum runners ...
Here’s an update from Caroline Swann with some news for the adventurous types who may be heading to ...
The New Glasgow marina is located about six miles up the East River of Pictou in the heart of the ...
The British Virgins took a huge hit last fall from Irma. Boats were stranded on the shore by the ...
Located about half way between Shediac and the Miramichi on New Brunswick’s Acadian Coast, the town ...
Suddenly the once forsaken city of Hamilton, Ontario is booming for at least two good reasons.
The Salty Dawg Sailing Association (SDSA) invites all sailors to join a cruising rally from the ...
Long popular with New England and St. John area boaters, Passamaquoddy Bay is too often overlooked ...
We did breakfast yesterday in the Greek port of Piraeus, just outside Athens:strong coffee, crisp ...
After much speculation Prince Harry finally popped the question to American actress and longtime ...

 Killarney

KillarneyStory and Photos by: Jennifer Harker

We’re aboard Attigouatan, a Pursuit 2260 that normally lives life as a friend’s cottage boat, running back and forth from dock to dock. This will be her longest run in four years, travelling the approximately 120 kilometres (80 miles) northwest from Parry Sound to Killarney, threading our way through the northern reaches of the stunning 30,000 Islands of Georgian Bay’s eastern shoreline.

Her name evokes an early indigenous name for Lake Huron – Spirit Lake. 

Read more about Killarney....

  

Lifestyle

  • Prev
This photo from a CPS member shows how talented boaters are. Brenda Cochrane from Kelowna BC, a ...
The first part of this blog will show that not every day is blue sky and sunshine in the Bahamas!
This beauty came our way from Reel Deal Yachts in Bahia Mar, Florida. Why not charter for the ...
This new legislation from Washington State Department of Fisheries applies to boats launched in ...
Don’t miss this brilliant photo double header
In honour of Launch Day, our POTW this time comes from Wendy Loat in Port Credit. This shot, taken ...
Our favorite, Man-O-War Cay, is home to the Albury Boat Building empire. They have been building ...
On the Easter Weekend, the Sidney North Saanich Yacht Club from Vancouver Island, had its first ...
We were finally able to get a SIM card and data plan on our phone Monday morning. We could now ...
It’s Friday afternoon at the Newport Yacht Club in Stoney Creek, and that can only mean one thing - ...

 

Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 440

Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 440By Zuzana Prochazka

There are few things more satisfying than watching someone thumb their nose at tradition and introduce something revolutionary that kicks convention to the curb. French designer, Philippe Briand, has done just that for Jenneau’s new line of Sun Odyssey family cruisers. By starting with a clean sheet, Briand re-thought how we move about on deck and below, and the results on the Jeanneau 440 are game changing.

Jeanneau unveiled the first hull of their 440 in Annapolis with dramatic flair. On command, the plastic that sheathed half the boat...

Read more about the Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 440....

 

 

DIY & How to

  • Prev
CYOB readers often ask questions about their boats and system. For this issue, I’ve answered a ...
Modern marine engines run at very high temperatures and rely on a few methods to keep their ...
Pyrotechnic distress flares have been around for decades, while electronic strobe distress flares ...
In the early spring, just after launch, with the hustle and bustle of engine checks, antifouling, ...
All engines, including marine engines (inboards, outboards and stern drives) have many moving parts ...
Most of us don’t give a second thought to our sacrificial anodes – those curious knobs of raw metal ...
I once heard an argument at a yacht club. Two old salts, patiently itching to let go lines and ...
In this time of boat show afterglow, many boaters are counting the days until launch. 
This one-day course consists of both theory and practical demonstration sessions, is designed to ...
Water has a funny way of making its way into a boat: through through-hulls, stuffing boxes, leaks, ...

Marine Products

  • Prev
Canada Rope promises that its new Night Saver Rope will illuminate at night and act as a reference ...
Take a look as a 68-foot yacht docks itself in between two Volvo Ocean 65 sailing yachts at the ...
Industry Firsts Include Direct Injection and Integrated Electric Steering System
Verviers, Belgium, 18 May 2018 — Mercury Marine, the world leader in marine propulsion technology, ...
Again, we return to the beginning. We started this column with a look at marine navigation for ...
Ga-Oh (spirit of the winds in Algonquin) creates bags and other items from re-purposed sails.
The 2018 Northwest Boat Travel Guide just arrived. This time of the year is the perfect time for ...
We are all looking to gain a little more time these days, and technology is often the route we ...
While they are no longer a part of the CPS Flare Program, Fogh Boat Supplies and Fogh Marine, both ...
We have all had the experience of heading down below on a nice boat only to encounter an unpleasant ...