The W500 is a new type of small watercraft that can be outfitted for high performance as a Rigid-Hull Inflatable Boat (RHIB) technology.
RHIBs are known for their stability, high performance and seaworthiness in demanding applications such as lifeboats, rescue, and military operations. They also serve as tenders for large boats and ships, and as work boats in offshore facilities.
Unlike in regular RHIBs, the inflatable tubes that come with the W500 are easily detachable, for storage during transport, or in case they’re not needed, such as when you paddle or motorize on flat water.
And unlike RHIBs, the W500 can be outfitted with flotation tubes only in its rear part, so they don’t interfere much with fishing or paddling.
In addition, the weight of the outboard motor at the stern offers the W500 user to sit or stand closer to the bow while keeping the boat level. This slightly forward position further increases the range of motion when they fish, or paddle while launching or beaching in water that’s too shallow for motorizing, or in water with abundant aquatic vegetation.
The W500 can serve as a small, lightweight, car-top, durable microskiff with enhanced offshore capabilities.
The W500 user can drive it in the powerful and stable Riding posture, similarly to a personal watercraft (PWC, jet-ski), as well as standing up. Both types of boat feature a similar longitudinal, high saddle, although the W500’s saddle is longer, and allows the user to drive or paddle from different locations fore and aft of the middle of the cockpit.
Since motorizing at high speed in choppy water involves bumping into waves and generating spray, the W500 is offered with a lightweight, detachable spray shield that can be removed within seconds and stored flat and upright in one of the hulls, behind the user. The reason we made this accessory detachable is in order to enable the user to get it out of their way when they fish, store it on board, and re-attach it only when it’s needed.
This video demonstrates the W500 offshore, in choppy water:
- Launching: Almost anywhere, including sandy and rocky beaches, steep banks that require seal-launching, remote beaches that require portaging and won’t allow for wheel carts, shallow water where only poling and paddling works, water with seaweed and/or grass, etc.
- Beaching: Same as above, except less steep banks.
- Mobility: Being a triple propulsion craft (motorizing, paddling, poling) the W500 can get anywhere a W kayak can, which means in seaweed, grass, reeds, over obstacles, in shallow water, in fast tidal currents, in strong wide, offshore in the chop, etc.
- Speed: 8.5 mph with a 210 lbs passenger on board and running a small, 2 HP Honda air-cooled outboard motor.
- Range: Typically, when using a 2 HP outboard motor, 1 quart of gasoline (0.9 liter) would suffice for 1 hour at full throttle.
- Maximum recommended load for passengers and their gear: 320 lbs (145 kg) when motorized.
The Wavewalk™ 500 comes ready for offshore motorizing.
It comes with these standard features:
- A transom motor mount ( TMM 20-15). The mount requires installation that takes up to 5 minutes of easy work. The new TMM 20-15 transom mount fits both 20″ (long) and 15″ (short) propeller shafts. We recommend using a 20″ (long) shaft motor with all our kayaks and boats.
- A pair of high-capacity, detachable, inflatable side flotation modules (INF). Color: Black. Attaching and detaching these modules takes seconds. Inflating them is easy and does not require a pump.
- A transparent, easily detachable and easily stored spray shield.
- A set of 4 additional tie-downs (eyelets) on each side of the boat (total of 8 extra eyelets) enabling attaching the side flotation modules to it, as well as attaching an extra pair of flotation modules for extreme conditions.
- A preparation for cockpit cover that also enables attaching the spray shield to the front of the cockpit.
- A pair of clamp mounted Tite-Lok fishing rod holders.
- A saddle bracket – standard. Starting from 2014 all W models feature a saddle bracket – standard.
- Total length: 11’4″ (136″) 345 cm
- Width: 29″ (73 cm) without the inflatable flotation modules
- Weight: 60 lbs (27 kg) without accessories
- Total width outfitted with 2 inflatable flotation modules: 29″ / front, 41″ / rear
- Total weight when outfitted with accessories and no motor: 67 to 70 lbs, depending on motor mount model
- Hull material: Rotationally molded High Density Polyethylene (HDPE)
- Inflatable floats material: Heavy Duty PVC, 30 MIL (0.03″, 0.763 mm)
- Spray shield material: 0.1″ (2.5 mm) thick Acrylite ®
- Motor mount material: For the TMM 20-15 – Medium Density Overlay (MDO)
- Minimum weight when outfitted with an outboard gas motor: 98 lbs with 2 HP Honda air-cooled outboard and articulated (U-jointed) tiller extension