Speed limit with electric bimini open

Oconee

Member
Messages
21
Reaction score
33
I'm looking at a new 2018 Bennington and I'm wondering if there's any guidance on maximum speeds allowed with the electric bimini top open? I'm getting a 300 hp motor and the dealer says it can run full throttle with the bimini open, with no danger of damaging the bimini. I'm just wondering what real experiences people have had with the newest model of electric bimini or if there's any official guidance from Bennington on the issue?

Thank you.
 

mbhenry1955

Well-Known Member
Messages
214
Reaction score
60
Location
Cincinnati, Ohio
I don't have the electric top, but I run mine at wot with my top open all the time (250) at 48-49 MPH with mo issues
 

Oconee

Member
Messages
21
Reaction score
33
I don't have the electric top, but I run mine at wot with my top open all the time (250) at 48-49 MPH with mo issues
Thanks for the reply. I run wot on my existing 225 with no problem, but it’s the manual top. The electric top has less bracing and fewer connections to the rail and that’s why I’m wondering how it will perform at high speed.

Thank you.
 

H2GO

Well-Known Member
Messages
207
Reaction score
273
Location
Fenton MI
Man I sure wish I had that problem where I had to worry I was going so fast my bimini would blow off. :) I'm jealous!
 

Alicedream

Well-Known Member
Messages
979
Reaction score
1,115
Location
Warsaw, MO
I did have a Bimini come crashing down on me two years ago while going about 39 MPH. So I am pretty careful about not going full speed into the wind and putting it down when I want go nuts for a while.
 

TomS

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,004
Reaction score
1,031
Location
Sanibel FL
I had the electric top and never worried about the strength of it, stability at cruise speeds was not an issue. That said, while I didn't do big speed runs very often, I usually kept the top down for those, just because.
 

BigKahuna

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,132
Reaction score
2,697
Location
North Carolina
Test drove another brands boat and it had an electric Bimini. Was told that they were all pretty similar in materials and construction. The salesman had the boat 50+ and the Bimini, although flapping a bit was pretty solid.......
 

Michiman

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,248
Reaction score
1,819
Location
Okemos, MI
Welcome and post some pictures when available and give us some specs. From what I've read on this board, some have had not trouble while others have. Personally, running WOT with it up would scare me so I don't do it. Then again, due to the amount of wind generated at high speed, I don't run WOT much to begin with.
 

Havasu

Well-Known Member
Messages
706
Reaction score
579
Location
Fallbrook, California
I also don't have the electric bimini but I've had mine at 50 with both biminis up and they don't move at all. No flapping, nothing.
 

Oconee

Member
Messages
21
Reaction score
33
After discussions with TB and the Dealer, they’re now recommending the installation of an additional folding leg on the front of the existing curved leg of the Bimini, that will provide enhanced stability of the Bimini at high speeds.

The new boat will be delivered this week, so if the weather cooperates, I’ll be able to test it pretty soon.
 

Noah Genda

Well-Known Member
Messages
107
Reaction score
19
Location
Indianapolis, IN
Without a doubt, if you are going to run at full throttle with the electric Bimini up, you'll want the additional support. Like someone else said, if you factor in what the wind is doing plus your WOT, you'll quickly feel like slowing down. To quote Jerry Lee Lewis, "Whole lotta shakin goin on." Make sure they teach you the proper way to raise and lower the top. I hit a couple of people on the head(as they were in the rear loungers) before I learned the proper technique.
 

Macon_a_Splash

Active Member
Messages
39
Reaction score
40
Location
North Carolina
I was at a boat show recently. Saw one pontoon manufacturer that routinely installs additional supports for electric bimini - is standard for them now. Asked my dealer if Bennington could/would. They can and will. The added supports are not supposed to interfere with the electric bimini operation but will be available for me to manually fasten if I plan on faster speed with top up. Sounded like an easy solution. Appreciated Bennington's willingness to include it.
 

Oconee

Member
Messages
21
Reaction score
33
You’re exactly right Macon. Before I took delivery, the local dealer installed an additional support leg on each side that you can use if you’re going fast or in high wind situations. I’m still in break-in so I haven’t tried them out at speed yet, but it feels rock solid when those legs are in place.
 
Top