Captain's ReportPremier 221 Gemini Triple Tube with 115 Suzuki By Captain John B. WenzIn today’s busy world, pastime activities have to become more and more stress free, simple, and fun with minimal time spent preparing for the main activity. In the old days being a boater meant you had to spend part of your time maintaining your boat. That seems to be an old-fashioned way of thinking. Here in the 21st century, time is an issue. A boat owner wants to get on the boat and go boating, with as little effort as possible. Premier had that very thought as a design goal for the 221 Gemini. Premier has been building nothing but pontoon boats since 1992. Their upscale lineup ranges from simple, no frills double “Toon” boats to high-end triples. The Gemini model, part of what they call their Sportboats, is a boat built for easy launching and set-up, so that you can get right to the fun. I see it as an upscale, entry-level pontoon boat. It’s uncomplicated, yet it has some nice features and a layout that allows you to do a little bit of everything.Built to LastExperience has taught these guys an awful lot about boat building, and they build theirs to last. Structural integrity includes solid aluminum keels and multi-chamber tubes. Transoms are attached to a number of transverse members to prevent racking. And, like the saltwater guys, they heat-shrink all of the electrical connections to keep them dry. That’s the kind of meaningful extras that make a difference when it comes to pleasing your customers and developing a reputation. Another item that distinguishes Premier is in the seating. The individual seat units are rotocast in a durable resin, making them truly wood-free in construction. You’ll find an increasing number of mid and higher-priced pontoon boats to be built this way. However, the hinges are what really set these guys apart. They’re a welded aluminum device which functions better than anything else I’ve seen out there. The seat top lifts and then tilts down, out of the way, so it stays open while you stow or retrieve your gear. Gone are the days of little jury-rigged hooks and lanyards that you find around so many boats.Stainless steel cleats, polished corner castings and flush-mounted docking lights are useful and attractive details which not only look good, but they’re functional and they add value. In addition, the standard equipment list includes things like courtesy lights and a 9-foot bimini top. The Layout- Something For EveryoneA simple boat, available in both two and three pontoon configurations. There’s plenty of room to fit your whole family in two distinct seating areas, plus a dedicated fishing area back aft. Up forward, are two benches, port and starboard. The one to starboard is a chaise lounge, all ready for relaxing. On the opposite side of the bow docking gate is a shorter couch, with a railing gate immediately aft. All seating surfaces lift for storage, of course. Tie-up alongside or bow-in, you’ll always find it easy to get on board. On the starboard side, amidships, is an attractive helm console fitted with a tinted plexiglass windshield and storage beneath. Courtesy lights all around are standard. Engine instrumentation includes a speedometer, tachometer, voltage meter, and trim gauge. A vinyl steering wheel and a bucket helm seat are provided for the captain’s comfort. Opposite and aft of the helm console is an L-shaped settee. That, too, offers plenty of storage underneath, and a removable table. Back on the aft deck, you’ll find a dedicated fishing station. Two swivel fishing chairs flank a livewell which features a couple of beverage holders and a place for your rods. An additional rack for fishing tackle is located on the starboard railing, and a bifold door and swim ladder are found on the starboard side.Tested With a Suzuki 115-hpOur test boat was powered by a Suzuki four-stroke 115 horsepower outboard. The DF-115 is an inline four-cylinder outboard, engineered for superior performance. Features like a forged one-piece crankshaft, 4-into-2-into-1 exhaust, electronic fuel injection, and solid state electronic ignition provide quick acceleration and plenty of muscle at the top-end. For durability, the Suzuki engineers have included tough features like a self adjusting oil-bathed timing chain and an air-cooled, 40-amp alternator, which offers adequate capacity for all your 12 volt systems.When we pushed up the throttle, the Suzuki 115 put us up on plane in 3.5 seconds and we reached 25 miles an hour in 5.9 seconds. We topped out at 29.6 mph at 5900 rpm. Our best fuel economy was observed at 3500 rpm where we saw a consumption rate of 3.0 gallons per hour at a speed of 16.6 mph. That results in a range of 5.48 miles per gallon. MeasurementsPremier’s 221 Gemini is 21’4” long with a width of 8’6”. Tube diameter is 25 inches, and the twin model weighs 1,350 pounds, the 3-tube version weighs 1,650 pounds. Payload capacity is 2400 pounds and 2875 pounds respectively, and the 221 triple safely carries a group of fourteen passengers. The two pontoon engine capacity is 125 horsepower, while the triple will handle a 175 hp outboard safely.This boat is an economical little package that certainly “keeps it simple” while affording your family plenty of opportunity for fishing and fun.
Test Result Highlights
- Top speed for the Premier 221 Gemini (2008-) is 29.6 mph (47.6 kph), burning 9.9 gallons per hour (gph) or 37.47 liters per hour (lph).
- Best cruise for the Premier 221 Gemini (2008-) is 16.6 mph (26.7 kph), and the boat gets 5.48 miles per gallon (mpg) or 2.33 kilometers per liter (kpl), giving the boat a cruising range of 148 miles (238.18 kilometers).
- Tested power is 1 x 115-hp Suzuki 4-Stroke.
Standard and Optional Features
5-year bow to stern