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Yamaha WaveRaider For Sale: Are They Still Worth Buying?

Yamaha WaveRaider For Sale: Are They Still Worth Buying?

The Yamaha WaveRaider was released in 1994, a year after the iconic WaveBlaster.

Although it has been out of production for a very long time, you can still see some of them running on the waters!

If you are looking for a Yamaha WaveRaider for sale, this post is for you. We at JetDrift have gathered everything you may need to know about this WaveRunner under one roof!

Also, before you jump into a deal, don’t skip our post about the drawbacks of owning a vintage 2-stroke WaveRunner!

Yamaha WaveRaider Review

The Yamaha WaveRaider family consisted of four different models, which are the following:
  • WaveRaider 700
  • WaveRaider 700 DX
  • WaveRaider 760 (1996)
  • WaveRaider 1100
All of these models hit the market in 1994, just like Yamaha’s first stand-up WaveRunner, the FX-1.

The new WaveRaiders were a „runabout type” PWCs and all of these models had the same size, V-shaped hull. Speaking of dimensions, they were 112.6 inches long, 44.1 inches wide, and 38.2 inches high.

But even if they were all the same size, there were some main differences between these models. Let’s take look at them one-by-one!

Yamaha WR700 and WR700-DX Review

The Yamaha WR700 was the entry-level model in this family and had the fewest features.

The WaveRaider700 engine was a 701cc, 2-cylinder, 2-stroke, dual-carb power source that offered 80 HP.

Just like any other vintage PWC, it featured a direct drive, open-loop cooling system, and its impeller rotated counterclockwise.

Thanks to its lightweight GH1 fiberglass hull, this model weighed only 388 pounds! In contrast, today’s flagship performance PWCs can weigh up to 800-1000 pounds.

The WaveRaider-DX, which was also known as the WaveRaider Deluxe, was powered with the same engine as the basic WR700.

One of the main differences between the two models was their weight, as the Deluxe was 438 pounds. This model also had a larger, 13.2-gallon fuel tank.

When it comes to the Yamaha WaveRaider’s fuel consumption, we can say that it was significantly worse compared to a modern, 4-stroke PWC. Even this smaller, 80 HP engine was prone to burning 9 gallons of gas every hour.

The WaveRaider700 had a smaller, 10.6-gallon fuel tank while the DX had a fuel capacity of 13.2 gallons. With this amount of gas, you could expect to get 1.2-1.5 hours of riding at full throttle on these crafts.

Yamaha WR1100 Review

It’s safe to say that the WR1100 was the big brother in this family. The engine of the WaveRaider1100 was a 1,051cc, 3-cylinder, 2-stroke, 110 HP power plant.

The bigger engine resulted in a higher curb weight as well, as the WR1100 weighed 540 pounds.

This craft was not just more powerful but also more thirsty, as it burnt around 12 gallons of gas every hour.

Although it featured the larger, 13.2-gallon fuel tank, this model offered only one hour of riding time due to its higher fuel consumption. The gas bills were not only higher for WR1100 owners, but the service costs were higher as well.

This is because their engines were significantly bigger and featured 3 carburetors, while the smaller models only had 2.

Moreover, it’s much harder to find parts for the 1100!

Top speeds?

They were amazing, as the WaveRaiders were built to be the fastest PWCs at that time!

Let’s take a closer look at them.

Yamaha WaveRaider Top Speed

When it comes to the top speed of the Yamaha WaveRaider, we are actually talking about three different numbers. According to the original owner’s manual, the top speed of the WR700 was 51.6 mph, the WR700-DX offered 50.3 mph, while the fastest WaveRaider was the VX1100 with a top speed of 56.5 mph.

In general, all of them offered great power for optimum performance.

But unfortunately, there were many complaints about their handling, as these crafts were quite unpredictable. They were prone to unexpectedly pitching the rider off.

Despite this, the WaveRaider family remained in production until 1997. Moreover, the WR700 got an update in 1996 when Yamaha released the WR760, with a more powerful engine.

Yamaha WaveRaider Specs

For your convenience, we’ve compiled the Yamaha WaveRaider specs under one roof:
Lenght (in)116,2116,2116,2
Width (in)44,144,144,1
Height (in)38,238,238,2
Dry weight (lb)388483540
Top Speed (mph)51,650,356,5
Performance (HP)8080110
Max. fuel.cons.(g/h)9912,2
Cruising range (h)1,21,51,1
Fuel cap. (gal)10,613,213,2

Yamaha WaveRaider For Sale

If you are in the market for a vintage 2-stroke Yamaha, you probably want to know where can you find a Yamaha WaveRaider for sale.

As this craft has not been in production for a very long time, you can only choose from very aged models.

It’s always best to start your research on online forums and FB fan groups. Beyond the good deals, you can find a lot of valuable info there on WaveRaiders.

In addition, if you are lucky, can also find some Yamaha WaveRaiders for sale on Craigslist, or other online ad sites.

Yamaha WaveRaider Prices

Yamaha WaveRaider prices range from $1,000 up to $3,000, depending on the year and the model. Additionally, the engine hours and the condition also play a big role in the price.

Are Yamaha WaveRaiders Still Worth Buying?

Are Yamaha WaveRaiders still worth buying? This is a typical question asked by many buyers and the answer is, no.

These crafts have 2-stroke engines, which require much more attention and continuous „carb work.”Additionally, they are already pretty old and their engines are worn out. If you buy one and have to rebuild or replace its engine, it would be a lot of work and cost an arm and a leg.

And let’s face it, WaveRaiders are not the best 2-stroke WaveRunners ever built. They are often unpredictable and not as sporty as the newer models.

Thus, if you are stuck on buying a vintage 2-stroke craft, a GP1200, GP1300R, or a WaveBlaster would be a better choice.

They are newer, more powerful, and have a much better hull design. This is why 2-stroke GP WaveRunners are still so popular!

As a final word, especially if you are a beginner rider, it’s not recommended that you buy a 2-stroke ski. They are harder to maintain, need more attention, and parts are very hard to find. Instead, best practice is to buy a new (or max. a couple of years old) 4-stroke, non-supercharged model. These are the most reliable and cost-effective PWCs on the market!

This is our short Yamaha WaveRaider review. We hope you like it!