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Showing most liked content since 05/28/2017 in all areas

  1. 14 likes
    For fathers day weekend we went out on the boat saturday.....even though the weather was supposed to be less than stellar. A bit overcast most of the day but never rained till late in the evening. So as we are out cruising around I has my camera with me (as usual) and decided to try my hand at action shots. They turned out so-so but not to terrible. We did get chased off the lake sunday evening and again monday afternoon as some pretty good storms rolled through the area. Storms rolling in: Action shots: Sunset pics:
  2. 13 likes
    We finally got our Benny back from the factory after some repairs. Bennington had to replace all of the seat skins as the OEM skins were coming apart. They installed all Simtex and we love it. It seems to be softer than the OEM seats. We were able to put her back in the water yesterday and she ran great! Thanks Benny!
  3. 12 likes
    Pulled into the Walmart parking lot tonight and saw an absolutely stunning 65 ft. boat/yacht with 4 Seven 627's on the back. Pics don't do it justice. That's 2500 HP gentlemen!!! Check out those props!
  4. 12 likes
    Got the call on Monday that my Benny that was supposed to be delayed until late June had shipped and just had arrived at the dealership. It was missing one piece of furniture (assuming the portable chair) that was being shipped and scheduled to arrive later this week. We have the delivery scheduled for Friday. Got the hydro hoist lift being installed Thursday, just in time. The plan is coming together. This is my 3rd new boat, but first pontoon. I'm really excited to get her life launched on Smith Lake. More pics to come but here is one the dealer sent me as they start to get her rigged for her life in Alabama.
  5. 11 likes
    Hey all, finally getting to the pics and my report. I've had my 21SXF on the water for 6 days & have over 17 hours on it, and have burned about 2/3 of a tank of gas in that time with the 115 SHO. Right now I have my spare prop, a 13-5/8"x14 aluminum non-SDS. In calm water I can get the speed down to 2 mph (GPS) which is surprising to me but now I'm second guessing not getting the strakes & foils, which might have taken a few more 10ths MPH off to get to optimal trolling speed when using bait. The dealer equipped me with a 14x13 Talon SDS stainless prop which I've yet to try. I did see 30 MPH @ 6000 RPM with the aluminum, but that was a brief run when it had less than 10 hours on it. Very happy with the Yamaha, it's quiet and gets awesome fuel economy when run slow, which is what I've been doing as I'm trying to figure out the multifunction SIMRAD NSS7 evo3 I equipped it with. I've never owned a fish finder (or any other boating-related electronics) so it's a challenge, even though I'm quite proficient with computers. This has a dual-core processor but I have yet to learn what SIMRAD runs for an OS, although I'd guess since they're Norwegian, it's likely a Linux. Just have to play with it some more, but I will sat that the view with the Structure Scan function is like a camera. I can see rocks, logs, sticks, anything that's down there that's not a fish, which the Echo Scan picks up. I can view both simultaneously (can view up to 4 functions at once) which is a big help. The good news is that the first time out fishing, my buddy caught 2 salmon (landlocked) at the same time on a double streamer setup, something we'd never done before. Good karma! However, he had to net them himself, as there's little room to maneuver with the 2 aft fishing seats in the way. I'm leaving the seats at camp when there's just 2 of us fishing, much easier to move around back there now. Being a newbie boater, I'm noticing that the wind can be a problem, especially when docking or putting it on the lift. Practice makes perfect, I suppose so I'll keep at it. Here's a bunch of pics The single axle trailer hauls my Bennie nicely, we were going 75 MPH up I-95 with no trouble at all I had to move the stereo to the right of the helm to have room for the SIMRAD. It's a great location as a passenger can tweak it easily from the couch seat. I ran a NMEA2000 cable from the engine to helm, very easy to do, cost for the starter kit and Yamaha engine interface cable was about $160. Next year I'll get autopilot for it, then broadband radar the year after that. I moved the dual battery setup, which was well into the privacy area when I got the boat, to the port side, as it should have been in the first place. I wish I'd taken a "before" pic, but the dimes show where the screw holes were and the tip of the measuring tape is where the battery was closest to the privacy area entrance door, within 18". If left as it was, someone using a porta potty would have either had to put their feet on the batteries to sit, or leave the door open and put their legs out into the open area of the boat. Also a bunch of aluminum chips left on the floor there from the installation. Very unsatisfactory, but easy to fix myself. I mentioned it to the service manager when I went back to the dealer later, I think the installer needs more training and/or common sense. The NMEA2000 "backbone" can be seen to the left of the batteries. The Yamaha engine interface cable was plenty long enough to reach from the engine to the battery box, so rather than leave the T under the deck where it would get wet, I brought the T up into the privacy area, then ran the cable back down and on to the helm. I'm not going to hook up the gas tank to the NMEA, prefer the gauge which is always in view. The trim function doesn't work on the SIMRAD either, but the gauge is fine. I do use the GPS speedometer on the SIMRAD. More to follow, headed up to Camp tomorrow morning and will do the 20 hour service this weekend while there. Afterward, I'm going to put the stainless 14x13 SDS Talon on and see what she'll top out at. More report to follow, have a nice weekend, all!
  6. 10 likes
    Just received the new digital issue of PDB and lo and behold once again our favorite celebrity has a full page on CWag depicting his service to our country. Not sure if the link will work on the forum but here it is. You definitely want to see it as it has some pictures from the 70s of him [1970] http://read.uberflip.com/i/837504-july-2017
  7. 10 likes
    Man, when I read the title I was SURE it was gonna be something like this:
  8. 10 likes
    Well, I have 26 hours on the motor since I dropped in the water on April 20th. My top speed has been 49.3 and I am spinning 15.5-17 Saltwater II prop. I have hit low 49's a few times with me and the dog on the boat. The majority of the time my speed at top end is between 46 and 48. What I have been most impressed with is that i have had as many as 9 adults on the boat and still can hit 45 to 46 easily. My top RPM's are between 5800 and 5900. It seems that I get better speed with moderate loads and a fuller fuel tank believe it or not I actually think if I wanted to tinker with engine height and pitch there is more top end, but I am not going to do it. I love the guts of this engine and that it can maintain high end speed under load. The 0 to 40 speed is a lot of fun. I am content and happy with the motor and performance so I am am leaving good enough alone .
  9. 10 likes
    Ok. After 2 weeks in Europe and waiting for the weather and work to cooperate, we finally picked up the new 24 SSBXP. Captain Boone approves and Mrs. Salad has claimed the rear swingback. You can't really tell, but it is midnightblack and smokey granite accent. In the sun it stands out. Note the swingback rail. We were told on delivery that we were the only swingback ordered with the rail. Makes it fun to ride back there underway.
  10. 10 likes
    So I have been thinking about getting the toons polished on my boat since I bought it. After seeing some other boats on a FB group I decided to bite the bullet and get it done. I will say...at least for me...I am overly impressed with the way it came out. There is still some finishing touches and a final buff but I love it.
  11. 9 likes
    Performance Update: Hitting 44 mph gps with four people on board, light gear, 3/4 of a tank of gas at WOT, about 6400 rpm. I am curious to see how it does with less gas and weight v. full tank and boat load of people, etc... That said, skipping across the lake at 44 mph yesterday produced huge grins on me. It also produced the comment "can we throttle back a bit" from my wife. I don't think we are on the same page yet for desired boating experience.
  12. 9 likes
    I am blessed to have access to such a wealth of knowledge, information and help from all of you. Thanks everyone! Spent this morning with a service guy from our dealer/services center - Spicers up here on Houghton Lake. The guy was great! He brought out a 13, 15, and a 17 pitch ss enertia props. We looked at engine mounting, cavitation plate, and of course propping. We also test drove and played around with engine trim. When it was all said and done, we moved up to the 15 pitch ss enertia. Engine mount puts the cavitation plate right at the bottom of my center toon, and just barely noticeable when up on plane. Thus, I think that is precisely where it should be, and it was in that spot all along. Between the new prop, and adjusting my trim levels, I think we have resolved this issue. We are now at about 41-42 mph gps at 6000-6100 RPM's with nearly a full tank of gas and us two men on it. The service guy was tall and stocky compared to my somewhat short and trim family. He was like having my wife, daughter, and half of one of my three boys on board with me. :-) I will play with it some more with different amounts of guests in the upcoming weeks. However, I am pleased with where my performance is now. I am also very happy about being able to give it much less throttle to get up to 20 and 30 mph. This will be much better from a fuel consumption perspective.
  13. 9 likes
    Luckily the lake we're on is big enough to always find a place where there is no one around. Some pics of my deck hand Nixon enjoying rear facing recliners in the slip at the Marina. We had a great 4 day weekend on the water.
  14. 8 likes
    Got a call from our salesperson the other day with some bad news. He said Bennington had contacted him and there is a supply delay for flooring. This bad news quickly turned to great news when he said Bennington is willing to do another upgraded flooring for free. I was like sounds like a winner to me
  15. 8 likes
    I know.... crazy, right?
  16. 8 likes
    Now that I can post pictures again - was having iPad issues and had to reset it - here are some pictures from our cottage over Father's Day weekend. We had my side of the family up for the first time together at our new cottage. It was great! Rainbows over Houghton Lake: Our youngest son relaxing as we cruise the lake; Cousins hanging out on the tube: Some tubing happened: A fair amount of kayaking along the shore took place:
  17. 8 likes
    Doesn't take much lead to drop a strong guy. Hopefully his body would cushion the fall of the motor so it could be re rigged and be back on the water by lunch. I have zero tolerance for scum bags.
  18. 8 likes
    A croc was seen on Burt Lake this past weekend
  19. 8 likes
    Here are 2 Pictures
  20. 7 likes
    Here is the captain on his new boat.
  21. 7 likes
    I had a similar situation - I no longer have that wife. True story.
  22. 7 likes
    I had same issue ..... ordered a new boat with Seagrass ..............
  23. 7 likes
    Steve: again, you didn't do anything wrong - even in your last maneuver. Think about it; your first move was to the right in order to pass port-to-port. That is the correct and proper move. When he made the wrong move, it was at this point that you invoked COLREGS Rule 7(a). You made an evasive maneuver to avoid the risk of collision. Rule 7 Risk of Collision (a) Every vessel shall use all available means appropriate to the prevailing circumstances and conditions to determine if risk of collision exists. If there is any doubt such risk shall be deemed to exist. The other joker was at fault. There was no collision. You did the right thing - you avoided the collison. Good job.
  24. 7 likes
  25. 6 likes
    2 rounds center mass.......Officer I was afraid for my life when he lunged towards me.
  26. 6 likes
    You probably won't believe me but I figured it out by myself. A few bungee cords. Two ropes. A short broom and a 6 foot 2X4. No damage done. No problems. The process, as you can see from my tool list, was a matter of leverage and pivoting the weight. And too complicated to describe here. Yay for me.
  27. 6 likes
  28. 6 likes
    Nice article. Thank you for your service Carl! My uncle served in Vietnam too. He did something like 3-4 tours over time. He started out as a grunt, then Huey door gunner, and after Vietnam he became a Cobra pilot. He was a Cobra pilot until he retired from the Army in the late 80's. One of the coolest things I was able to do as a kid was get into one of the Cobra's down at Ft. Campbell. Much respect and thanks to you and all those that have served, and continue to serve, so that the rest of us may live the lives we choose.
  29. 6 likes
    Had the pontoon delivery guy and the lift installer out before bringing the pontoon to the lift. The lift installer dug a trench down about 8 inches and moved the lift into it which lowered it (and the rails dramatically)! The pontoon delivery guy gave his approval and delivered the pontoon. All is well! Yay! We checked and it appears the pontoon needs about 12-13 inches in the rear of the pontoon (between bottom of pontoon deck and the water. As of now, with the lift lowered and knowing the measurement of our specific pontoon between the bottom of the pontoon deck and the deck rails, we are good! If the river goes down 5-6 inches we should still be good Thank you everyone for your kind and helpful assistance. By the way, the rails are installed as low as they can go. Any lower and the pontoons won't fit...they would rest on the cross bars instead of the rails. Thanks again! Happy boating! Love our Bennington!!!
  30. 6 likes
    I have about $90 into the materials and it's enough to do two of them. The manufacturers fell apart in three years so it's obvious they are not using quality material. Canvas shops were quoting me $300. I figured I'd learn a new skill and get a better product doing it myself.
  31. 6 likes
    Are we reading different topics??? If not, I'll come visit and take a crap in your livewell, see how that works!
  32. 6 likes
    Do you play golf Semp? If so, you probably never buy golf balls either! LOL
  33. 6 likes
    Talking about anchors with boaters is like talking religion. Lots of factors that you should consider when it comes to anchors: 1. How strong/young/old are you? Pulling an anchor up by hand from 60' down (about 150' of rode to pull up) a couple times while fishing will quickly wear you out. When I go out fishing, I'll drop the anchor as many as 10 times during the day. My 62 year old shoulders and arms don't appreciate that kind of wear and tear. 2. What kind of waters (big waves, little waves, windy, calm) will you be boating in? A pontoon boat is going to automatically take any wind and make your boat a sailboat. Adding waves, currents, etc. are only going to make it worse. 3. What kind of boating are you doing? Will you be fishing (where you might pull the anchor 10 times while out), or will you mostly be just "setting it and forgetting it" for the day while enjoying your favorite adult beverages? This ties closely into #1. If you're doing it often, I'd consider the lightest weight anchor that you can get that will hold you. 4. Will you be anchoring out overnight, or just day trips? If you're doing this, you're going to want an anchor that sticks like glue or else you'll be up all night worrying if you're dragging the anchor. 5. Would you consider a windlass for pulling/dropping the anchor. This will allow you to use pretty much any anchor. When I went through this checklist, #1-4 led me to buy a Fortress FX-11 anchor. it's a Danforth style anchor, but holds much better than any other Danforth I've had - and MUCH lighter in weight. You can adjust it for mud bottoms or sand bottoms, based on the angle of the fluke (32º or 45º). I could have gotten away with the FX-7 (weighs 4 lbs) but because I'm out in the Gulf I wanted a little more holding power (FX-11 only weighs 7 lbs). Here it's all sand, so when it sticks, it STICKS. I've rarely had it slip on me, and when it did it was my fault for being too lazy to set it properly. The think I liked about the Fortress anchors are that they're so light. A windlass is a great addition if you're doing a lot of anchoring, but in the end, you still need a lot of rode and a good amount of chain. I have 8' of chain on mine (which by most standards is short for the type of boating I'm doing). You'll want at least 150' of rode for the depth of your lake to give you a 3:1 ratio at it's deepest point.
  34. 6 likes
    Unless you drive like me...... wide open.... you should get some pretty good distance out a tank. Somebody said something about an adjustble lever next to the wheel... I just thought it was an on/off switch!!
  35. 6 likes
    Today was our BBB day. (Breakfast By Boat) Got up took the cover off and headed up to the Boathouse Grill. Pull up about 930 and find out that last nights storm knocked the power out. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhh!!! We cruised around for a bit but being a Holiday weekend it started to get really busy in the main channel. Jet skis, wake boarders, bass fishermen, big cabin cruisers..........They're all out so we decided to put the boat away..........and it's only noon!
  36. 5 likes
    Maybe Semp can help with pointers on making another informational video on using the seats properly.
  37. 5 likes
    Dude compared a Benni to a mullet, that should be cause for removal from the forum. Put him in a Tracker.
  38. 5 likes
    Yes, folks.... let's be careful about throwing Bennington under the bus. Remember that suppliers plan their production based on their customer's (in this case, Bennington) forecast. Any replacement work is above and beyond their planned scope. Since no one in this thread seems to be sitting at the dock as a result of delays, let's go easy..... and happy boating.
  39. 5 likes
    I agree. Prior to installing our pool. The only time I was in the backyard was to mow. Now... I'm outside everynight until at least 10:30, weather permitting. I get up early on the weekends to clean, power wash and make sure everything is in tip top shape. Love my back yard, now.
  40. 5 likes
    Mrs. Salad is an insurance agent. About 2 years ago she had a customer insure a new pontoon with a 300 HP engine. About a week later he came in to report the engine stolen. Seems someone (i guess several "someone's") had backed a boat up behind his in the marina and lifted the engine off during the night. They basically destroyed his boat getting it off. I think the boat was totaled. He even had the nerve to accuse Mr. Salad of being part of the ring as "she was the only person that knew about the engine". Duh! Don't you think a 300 HP engine on a pontoon gets enough attention on it's own?
  41. 5 likes
    Probably owned by the "Door Greeter" at Walmart
  42. 5 likes
  43. 5 likes
    Great article, thanks Cwag! A door gunner in Vietnam = straight up bad a$$.
  44. 5 likes
    As many here know I love photography and have posted a multitude of pics here of our Beautiful Lake These photos take photography to a new level Technology can always be used for positive or negative unfortunately, so happy in my back yard it is being used in a positive way
  45. 5 likes
  46. 5 likes
    Well after waiting over a month and still not receiving any confirmation from the dealer that Bennington had confirmed the order. I made the decision to cancel the order with my local dealer, it was a difficult decision . However in the end this has worked out for the better . I eventually started some talks with another dealer and had them price out the build, I literally feel out of the chair when they came back with the price, beating my local dealer by huge amount after expenses traveling and all the misc. by well over 15K . and almost 28% off of MSRP. I reexamined the build and added the Heavy top stitch and the VesselView 702 . I gave the go ahead and received a confirmation within 72 hours . its been two weeks and the dealer has kept me very well informed. I'm hoping to take possession around the beginning of August with fingers crossed. The Best part is it will be built as a 2018!!! Now the suspenseful wait!!
  47. 5 likes
    I just shake my head in disbelief. We have become a nation of pansies. Do what's necessary to enjoy your boat. If you need to feel morally superior, donate fifty bucks to the Audubon Society.
  48. 5 likes
    If in doubt.........Just stop. I've had many occasions where we were on collision courses with other boats and they may have the right of way.........I would just stop let them pass then go on our way. On the other hand I've accelerated past people or go way to the right or left to avoid any kind of collision course by a wide margin. I'm not going to count on the other boat to make the move. I'm going to be proactive but safe and stay away from other boats......
  49. 5 likes
    We talk a lot about speed but there is nothing like cruising down the lake at sunset with the motor purring behind you at about 2000 rpm... Just sayin....
  50. 5 likes
    I am a retired (Feb '17) Television Production Manager/Agency Producer/Editor/Creative Director/Host. Retired from Texas A&M University after 25 years. Worked at the university PBS affiliate station on campus. Worked for Armed Forces Radio Television Services (AFRTS) before that, in the South Pacific, Kwajalein Atoll, Republic of The Marshall Islands. And have produced travel shows for Travelview International. Now I freelance produce and spend time on my 20SLX at Lake Conroe fishing, creating social media content for clients and showing them how to leverage & maximize their brand. Or teaching the basic concepts of "branding". http://www.breitbart.com/texas/2017/05/27/texas-cities-dominate-census-bureaus-five-fastest-growing-u-s-cities-list BTW....those Bennington videos......BORING!