190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

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Whalerdog
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190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Whalerdog » Fri Sep 15, 2017 8:29 pm

Having a 2007 [190 MONTAUK] since new, I have always found the [Bimini] top a total failure when folded down. When [the Bimini top is] folded down the tubes or rails of the Bimini grind into the side rail stanchions on the deck.

At one point [I] put hose around the stanchion bases. Then when in rough water the ball mounts pop out as the mounts spread open.

How could [Boston Whaler] do this with all their design capability. They just needed to make the top 1.5-inch narrower.

I know it's not good in rough water with the Bimini up, but I should be able to drop it to the deck and lash it down without worry. To place top on the boat and remove it even docked at my house [is troublesome]. I have cooked in the sun for many of the ten years.

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Phil T
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Re: 19 Montauk Bimini design failure.

Postby Phil T » Sat Sep 16, 2017 12:51 pm

Are you folding it forward or to the rear?

What happens when you stow it in the opposite position?
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Whalerdog
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Re: 19 Montauk Bimini design failure.

Postby Whalerdog » Sat Sep 16, 2017 3:46 pm

Forward position.

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Re: 19 Montauk Bimini design failure.

Postby Jefecinco » Sat Sep 16, 2017 7:21 pm

We didn't buy our 190 Montauk with a bimini top so I have no argument with your findings. Our previous Dauntless 16 was equipped with a bimini and we liked it's usability although when I was going to have four anglers aboard I left the top at home. It just required removing a couple of pins and lifting it off. When we didn't feel the need for the bimini we kept it in the semi raised position and just folded the front supports back to the rear support and wrapped the straps around the package to keep it tight. It was not in the way when semi raised. At the end of our boating day we would put the bimini top cover on and stow it behind the reversible pilot seat before installing the storage cover.

I've seen the same type bimini top arrangement on the newer Boston Whalers. Perhaps stowing yours behind the seat would work for you, too.
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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Whalerdog » Sun Sep 17, 2017 7:34 am

I have run the boat with the top up like the catalog picture. Even like that in small chop it wobbles badly with the center straps tightened plastic clip breaks. It's very awkward to carry from garage to back of house down ramp to floating dock. The TACO ball deck mounts spread after not much use and then the Bimini tubes pop out. The TACO mounts are not cheap. I mean I know I can be super tough on the boat in rough water. I would expect to be able to run in 2.5' chop at 37 mph with top down or closed up without damaging the Bimini. I have had the boat since new ten years and most if those years the top hangs in the garage.

Don't really remember putting top rearward. I might have and it might have been in the way. I'll try it again but not sure if it will be this late in the season. Has anyone else tried it in rear position? I don't care if I can go somewhere with it stern laying then put it up while anchored or off plane. Thanks for the help.all.

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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby jimh » Sun Sep 17, 2017 9:07 am

I think you are referring to the TACO MARINE hardware used to perform the hinge function of the Bimini top frame main tube to the deck. The TACO ball-and-socket mount is shown at

http://tacomarine.com/product/F13-0301/ ... nd-Lanyard

TACO MARINE offers a five-year warranty of those products. If your ball-and-socket mount has failed, perhaps you can obtain a replacement under the terms of the manufacturer's warranty from TACO MARINE.

The design of the mount is touted for allowing motion in any direction, so perhaps the wobble in the frame of the bimini top is due, in part, to the lack of any restriction of the motion of the frame at the hinge joint.

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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Ridge Runner » Sun Sep 17, 2017 9:25 am

On the newer Montauk series of boats, I do not think Boston Whaler designed the Bimini tops to be run with the top in a folded down position. On my 170 Montauk I have the same concern you have described. The proper way to run with the top in a collapsed position is with the top up and the cover on with the middle straps attached to the center console's windshields railing clip holders.

190 Montauk.JPG
190 Montauk.JPG (35.62 KiB) Viewed 6894 times
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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Acseatsri » Sun Sep 17, 2017 12:12 pm

I would expect to be able to run in 2.5' chop at 37 mph with top down or closed up without damaging the Bimini.


In a 2.5 foot chop, I run more like 15 mph in a 23' Whaler. It would seem that running nearly 40 mph would be brutal on both yourself and the boat. Your expectations for the Bimini top are way too high in this scenario of bone-jarring bouncing.

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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Phil T » Sun Sep 17, 2017 12:25 pm

After breaking a hinge, I bungied the folded bows to the bow rail an inch off the bow cap/gunnel to protect it from slamming when running in 2 ft's at speed.
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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby jimh » Sun Sep 17, 2017 12:34 pm

Yes, I agree: to expect to be able to run at 37-MPH into head seas of 2.5-feet wave height in a 19-foot boat is unrealistic. If you want to run into head seas with 2.5-feet wave height with minimal G-forces imposed on your Bimini top, you better get a 47-foot offshore sport-fishing boat.

An option might be to replace the ball-and-socket deck hinge with a conventional design, something like the one shown here:

http://tacomarine.com/product/F13-0220/ ... egree-Base

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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Whalerdog » Mon Sep 18, 2017 4:04 am

Phil T wrote:After breaking a hinge, I bungied the folded bows to the bow rail an inch off the bow cap/gunnel to protect it from slamming when running in 2 ft's at speed.


I have done that. I put something 3-4" high under both sides near bow, clear braided hose tubing around the two stanchions that rub, small cord around two balls mounts near end where Bimini splits or opens then those ball pop out of the Taco mounts ball end.

I tried running like the picture above up and cover on and it wobbles and straps loosen or plastic buckles snap. I can run with it bagged or up if water is flat. I would cruise at 20 mph in choppy water.
Last edited by Whalerdog on Mon Sep 18, 2017 4:30 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Whalerdog » Mon Sep 18, 2017 4:19 am

Acseatsri wrote:
I would expect to be able to run in 2.5' chop at 37 mph with top down or closed up without damaging the Bimini.


In a 2.5 foot chop, I run more like 15 mph in a 23' Whaler. It would seem that running nearly 40 mph would be brutal on both yourself and the boat. Your expectations for the Bimini top are way too high in this scenario of bone-jarring bouncing.


15 mph and I doubt I am on plane. If I can't run 37 mph in local bays of Long Island with 2.5 foot chop with top down and or wrapped then BW missed the mark. I can't even do 25 without problems in 2' waves or even less. Boat handles great in 2.5' waves. Handles great in ocean in real big stuff just on plane not 37 mph. Going out to sit on a sunny day in bays should not limit my speeds to 15 mph even with the bottom design it has.

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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Ridge Runner » Mon Sep 18, 2017 7:33 am

There is no way that a bimini top should even be on a small boat running at 37MHP in 2.5' chop. I was out on Raritan Bay almost every day two weeks ago in the same nasty wind driven chop. I enter the bay at the Keansburg Pier and then make the run out and around Sandy Hook (about a 30 minute run). I was running my 210 Montauk between 3,200 and 4,000-RPM, 30-MPH to 38-MPH, and it was a very rough ride--especially in a head sea. My T-Top took a beating, my antennas took a beating, my bow rail took a beating, I had to re-tighten most of the small screws in my console. I broke the bracket for my structure scan transducer. And I had a fishing reel become unseated from the rod in my rocket launcher. A a Bimini top has no place on a boat running in those types of conditions.
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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Phil T » Mon Sep 18, 2017 8:07 am

This is one of those situations were marketing "hype" meets reality.

For those who venture out in really snotty, wave slamming, conditions, anything not truly battened down will break. Then again I broke bow locker hinges and ripped the RPS out.

After breaking bimini hardware, I ended up taking the stupid thing off the boat and sold it to Pete B in MI.
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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Wweez » Tue Sep 19, 2017 9:52 am

A 170 MONTUAK has no plastic clips on any Bimini top straps. If Boston Whaler is using plastic, I would be surprised.

As mentioned. the expectations for very rough use may be too high. Particularly folded forward.

My Bimini top lies down aft for storage or trailing, and really does not have a good place to rest.

Possibly you should visit some other similar boats and a dealer. Yours may have been set up or produced wrong.

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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Dutchman » Tue Sep 19, 2017 2:57 pm

I have the smaller 2008 150 Montauk with a Bimini top, and the top is used every time we go boating.

I agree with [Whalerdog]: in the stored-down-forward-position the tubing takes a beating. I, too, therefore covered the stainless steel tube that goes forward to the ball receiver on the gunwale with plastic clear tubing.

Only when trailering I use a short bungee on [each side] to keep the bimini off the bow cushion, I then also use four-inch ball bungees to tie the main three tubes to the side railing to keep them from bouncing and rubbing to the railing.

Lastly I use a short two-inch ball bungee at the end close to the fixed hinge to keep the stainless steel tube that goes into the ball receiver from bouncing loose.

All the above to keep it from rubbing while trailering.

As soon as we launch we put the Bimini top into the upright position with the two stainless steel clasps and straps hooked to the center of the stainless steel Shepard's hook of the center console using the holes in the bimini cover made for that.

To me, the cross pins in the ball receivers make it impossible [for the joint to separate], so, if they do, something is not right in the installation or the hardware.

My Bimini top's tag says not to use it open when going over 40-MPH and my boat never goes that fast. But I have no problems going over 30-MPH with the top open and the aft and center straps [taut].

In the stored position , Boston Whaler could have done better; but when open and using the stainless steel OEM mounting hardware these Bimini tops are great sun protectors.
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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby jimh » Tue Sep 19, 2017 6:11 pm

As a general rule I would not expect a Bimini top--its fabric or its frame--to be designed to be deployed when the wind on the boat is more than 40-MPH. Note that if you are running at 20-MPH into a 20-MPH headwind, the wind on the boat will be 40-MPH.

The description of OEM canvas systems using plastic components seems extremely out of character for a Boston Whaler boat, particularly for a 19-foot boat which would be expected to be used at some time in its service life in some rough offshore conditions.

Whether Boston Whaler should have provided a large sun top type canvas system that can be used while running at more than 35-MPH into head seas of 2.5-foot significant wave height is something I think is NOT completely beyond discussion. Let's be realistic: the canvas is designed to provide shade and sun protection. In the classic era such a top was referred to as a SUN TOP. The normal canvas was much smaller and was called a FLYING TOP. The effective wind area of a Flying Top is much less than a big Sun Top, and the Flying Top canvas could be carried in the deployed position with high winds.

As for where the canvas ought to go when not deployed, there are two situations: folded up and stowed on the frame while the frame is still erect; or folded up and stowed on the frame, and the frame is lowered. The frame system ought to be sufficiently rigid and strong that it can remain erected with the canvas folded up in winds that are at least as strong as the canvas is rated for when deployed. If that cannot be obtained, then there ought to be a solution for stowing the canvas and frame while underway in a collapsed state, without resorting to homebrewing modifications, cushions, and stretch cords galore. The better-designed canvas systems provide rubber fenders or bumpers on certain tube elements to prevent metal-to-metal contact when the frame system is collapsed for storage.

But, really, if the wind and wave conditions are so bad that the canvas frame tubes won't stay pinned to their deck hinges that are all-metal, what the heck are you doing out in those conditions in a small boat? A Boston Whaler boat is supposed to be Unsinkable, but that does not mean that a Boston Whaler boat is Unbreakable.

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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Dutchman » Thu Sep 21, 2017 11:25 am

My Boston Whaler OEM frame with Sunbrella sun-top/bimini (stored and covered) in the upright position can handle 70+mph, ask me how I know.
Therefore I know the frame and its Stainless Steel components can handle that wind but I doubt that the opened canvas shade could handle 50+mph for many times without degrading quickly(stretching, seams ripping, etc.).
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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Whalerdog » Fri Sep 22, 2017 11:01 am

Dutchman wrote:My Boston Whaler OEM frame with Sunbrella sun-top/bimini (stored and covered) in the upright position can handle 70+mph, ask me how I know.
Therefore I know the frame and its Stainless Steel components can handle that wind but I doubt that the opened canvas shade could handle 50+mph for many times without degrading quickly(stretching, seams ripping, etc.).


In what kind of water?

The clip is SS to the rail. The adjustment buckles are plastic and they snap easily.
Last edited by Whalerdog on Fri Sep 22, 2017 11:21 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Whalerdog » Fri Sep 22, 2017 11:16 am

jimh wrote:As a general rule I would not expect a Bimini top--its fabric or its frame--to be designed to be deployed when the wind on the boat is more than 40-MPH. Note that if you are running at 20-MPH into a 20-MPH headwind, the wind on the boat will be 40-MPH....
if the wind and wave conditions are so bad that the canvas frame tubes won't stay pinned to their deck hinges that are all-metal, what the heck are you doing out in those conditions in a small boat? A Boston Whaler boat is supposed to be Unsinkable, but that does not mean that a Boston Whaler boat is Unbreakable.


What would you limit a 19 Montauk to in water conditions?

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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Whalerdog » Fri Sep 22, 2017 11:49 am

Ridge Runner wrote:On the newer Montauk series of boats, I do not think Boston Whaler designed the Bimini tops to be run with the top in a folded down position. On my 170 Montauk I have the same concern you have described. The proper way to run with the top in a collapsed position is with the top up and the cover on with the middle straps attached to the center console's windshields railing clip holders.

190 Montauk.JPG


Running like that and the straps buckles snap in quartering seas. The whole frame wobbles side to side. I even did the same as above putting cushions under rail at the front. That decreases the angle at the [TACO MARINE ball and socket hinge].
Last edited by Whalerdog on Fri Sep 22, 2017 12:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby jimh » Fri Sep 22, 2017 12:20 pm

Whalerdog wrote:What would you limit a 19 Montauk to in water conditions?


Since the discussion is only about a claim of design failure of the Bimini top, it really does not matter when I would decide conditions would be too bad and I would impose a limit. The Bimini top design is imposing a limit.

That the hinge fails when the boat is making 37-MPH into 2.5-foot head seas is not proof of a design failure. It just is evidence that the design did not contemplate carrying the Bimini top deployed in those conditions. If you want to continue boating in conditions in which the metal hinge joint fails, then you will have to re-engineer the hinge joint.

As I remarked earlier, there is nothing about a Boston Whaler boat that means you can't break stuff if you proceed at high speeds in rough wave conditions. You seem to have found the breaking point of the TACO Marine ball-and-socket hinge. As I suggested earlier, replace the hinge with a more robust mechanical design.

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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Dutchman » Fri Sep 22, 2017 1:27 pm

Whalerdog wrote:
Dutchman wrote:My Boston Whaler OEM frame with Sunbrella sun-top/bimini (stored and covered) in the upright position can handle 70+mph, ask me how I know.
Therefore I know the frame and its Stainless Steel components can handle that wind but I doubt that the opened canvas shade could handle 50+mph for many times without degrading quickly(stretching, seams ripping, etc.).


In what kind of water?

The clip is SS to the rail. The adjustment buckles are plastic and they snap easily.


As mentioned in my previous posting I can't go that fast on water but I can drive/trailer that fast on concrete/the highway (forgot to lower it during night time) it was closed and covered and the two front straps hooked to the center of the windshield grab rail. Yes the adjustment buckles did slip a little but nothing broke. Tip A. use check list every-time when trailering/boating and B. twist your straps (both front and back) once or twice enabling the wind to flow better around them instead of running them flat.

My clips are SS as are the adjustment buckles. No plastic anywhere on my Bimini with the exception of plastic inserts in the deck mounted ball receiver and the top cap(screwed on) of the pin to secure the ball in that receiver. Boston Whaler/Taco marine probably used a plastic/composite material there to keep the ball from rattling in the receiver while underway at 25mph with 15mph headwind in 2-3 foot seas.
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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Todd » Fri Sep 22, 2017 3:08 pm

If I wonder why I read these posts, this thread is evidence of their value. I'm a Whaler novice, having gotten my 2003 160 Dauntless this summer, so there's a lot to learn about the boat, brand, and operation. I wondered why there were two slits in the bimini boot when in the upright but not deployed position, the picture in this thread answered that question. Thank you.

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Re: 190 Montauk Bimini Design Failure

Postby Whalerdog » Fri Sep 22, 2017 9:12 pm

Dutchman wrote:
Whalerdog wrote:
Dutchman wrote:My Boston Whaler OEM frame with Sunbrella sun-top/bimini (stored and covered) in the upright position can handle 70+mph, ask me how I know.
Therefore I know the frame and its Stainless Steel components can handle that wind but I doubt that the opened canvas shade could handle 50+mph for many times without degrading quickly(stretching, seams ripping, etc.).


In what kind of water?

The clip is SS to the rail. The adjustment buckles are plastic and they snap easily.


As mentioned in my previous posting I can't go that fast on water but I can drive/trailer that fast on concrete/the highway (forgot to lower it during night time) it was closed and covered and the two front straps hooked to the center of the windshield grab rail. Yes the adjustment buckles did slip a little but nothing broke. Tip A. use check list every-time when trailering/boating and B. twist your straps (both front and back) once or twice enabling the wind to flow better around them instead of running them flat.

My clips are SS as are the adjustment buckles. No plastic anywhere on my Bimini with the exception of plastic inserts in the deck mounted ball receiver and the top cap(screwed on) of the pin to secure the ball in that receiver. Boston Whaler/Taco marine probably used a plastic/composite material there to keep the ball from rattling in the receiver while underway at 25mph with 15mph headwind in 2-3 foot seas.

Going down a road is totally different than waves hitting the boat. If possible post a picture of stainless strap adjustment buckles. The taco mounts spread and the delrin inserts crush. Thanks.