Burt Lake Speed Test

Optimizing the performance of Boston Whaler boats
jimh
Posts: 6759
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2015 12:25 pm
Location: Michigan, Lower Peninsula
Contact:

Burt Lake Speed Test

Postby jimh » Wed Oct 14, 2015 7:34 pm

This is an informal performance report of a short duration speed test conducted recently in Burt Lake.

We were boating in a small fleet of Boston Whaler boats (and one Pursuit), heading upstream in the Indian River (northern Michigan), on the last weekend of September. It was a beautiful fall day, very warm, very sunny, and light winds. As the fleet was exiting the mouth of the Indian River channel at the southern end of Burt Lake, I proposed via VHF Marine Band radio that we have a bit of speed competition.

I informed the fleet that I would be getting on plane at full speed, heading across the lake to the Crooked River channel mouth, and invited all participants to see if they could catch me. I figured this would prompt a good boat race.

I took off in CONTINUOUSWAVE, my Boston Whaler REVENGE 22 Walk-Through Whaler Drive with a 225-HP E-TEC turning a MIRAGEplus 17-pitch propeller, but actually I did not go to full throttle. We loafed along at about 30-MPH, watching the rest of the fleet getting going in pursuit. In short order the LUCKY TWO, a monster Whaler 25 Walkaround with twin 250-HP E-TEC engines was closing fast, along with the Pursuit 235 Offshore OUTLIER with a 250-HP Yamaha. I pushed my throttle ahead, and my boat responded by getting up to a very respectible 44.5-MPH (all speeds are in statute miles per hour as we are not on the high seas but on an arm of the Great Lakes, where the official speeds are in statute miles per hour). The E-TEC was hitting about 5,750-RPM and we were really flying along. By now the three boats were maintaining a fairly constant pace, with no one really pulling ahead.

Astern we still had a DON's DAUNTLESS, a 17 with a 115-HP Evinrude Ficht RAM Injection, a big Boston Whaler 345 CONQUEST with triple VERADO 350-HP engines, DRIFTWOOD, and PAU HANNA, an OUTRAGE V-20 with a 115-HP Suzuki. DON's DAUNTLESS and PAU HANNA were not catching up, but the big CONQUEST, who had gone wide to Starboard, was coming up fast. DRIFTWOOD must have had more speed available, but she just kept pace with the leaders, running about 45-MPH, and I bet no where near full-throttle speed.

I throttled back to a more comfortable cruise, as I don't really like to keep the throttle at wide-open for very long. A few minutes at over 5,700-RPM is enough for me, although I suspect the E-TEC wouldn't mind more time there. The three leaders went ahead, and I fell back with the back of the packers.

Based on my observations, I'd say the race would have been a very close match between CONTINUOUSWAVE, LUCKY TWO, and OUTLIER, all able to make 44-MPH or possibly a bit more. DON'S DAUNTLESS, with guest pilot John Raby at the helm, seemed to have run out of throttle at 35-MPH. PAU HANNA was also limited, possibly by her composite propeller. DRIFTWOOD seemed to be running at 45-MPH with ease, and I suspect there was more speed available, if needed.

It was a short duration, very informal speed test, but I was pleased with the boat speed we got from CONTINUOUSWAVE. Hitting 44.5-MPH was just about an all-time high speed for her. I think it was a combination of colder water, dry air, and a lighter-than-normal load of gear on the boat.

I invite the other participants to give their view of the race.

K Albus
Posts: 35
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2015 1:32 pm
Location: White Lake, Michigan

Re: Burt Lake Speed Test

Postby K Albus » Thu Oct 15, 2015 9:24 am

I was driving the Pursuit 235 Offshore. My top speed on that run, as measured by GPS, was 47 mph at 6,000 RPM. I was running a 15" MiragePlus propeller.

There was also another boat near the front of the pack, Don McIntyre's smooth side 21' Outrage.

jimh
Posts: 6759
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2015 12:25 pm
Location: Michigan, Lower Peninsula
Contact:

Re: Burt Lake Speed Test

Postby jimh » Thu Oct 15, 2015 1:44 pm

Thanks for the reminder on WHITE WATER, an OUTRAGE 21 with the original outrageous hull, and a big Yamaha V6 outboard--200-HP I believe. It can really fly, too. I suspect that WHITE WATER is a 50-MPH boat, if wave conditions permit such speeds.

Hoosier
Posts: 125
Joined: Sat Oct 10, 2015 8:04 pm

Re: Burt Lake Speed Test

Postby Hoosier » Fri Oct 16, 2015 5:48 pm

Pau Hana, my 1978 Outrage V20 with a 2003 Suzuki DF-115 engine, did its all-time-best, hitting 36-MPH. The throttle was pigged down as far as it could go, but not WOT, because it hit the front of my VHF radio. My propeller, which I've used for about the past 10 years, is a Piranha four-bade, 14-inch diameter, 18-inch pitch. At the end of the Crooked River run I hit a deadhead kicked up by the boats in front of me, and my four-blade propeller became a three-blade prop. The run back to the ramp was a bit long since I couldn't get above 5.5-MPH without the vibration becoming dangerous.
1978 Outrage V20 with 2004 Suzuki DF-115. 1992 23 Walkaround with two 2010 Yamaha F-150s.

User avatar
Don McIntyre - MI
Posts: 95
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2015 4:33 pm

Re: Burt Lake Speed Test

Postby Don McIntyre - MI » Fri Oct 16, 2015 6:17 pm

[In WHTE WATER] I stayed pretty much abeam of Don in LUCKY TWO during the whole crossing. Standard aluminum prop on the 200-HP Yamaha.

[WHITE WATER must have been hidden from my view by the LUCKY TWO's rather substantial profile.--jimh]

User avatar
Dutchman
Posts: 641
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2015 7:48 am
Location: Kalamazoo, MI (South Haven)
Contact:

Re: Burt Lake Speed Test

Postby Dutchman » Mon Oct 19, 2015 2:04 pm

Sounds like you all had fun in that beautiful boating area. [HOOSIER's narrative] reminded me I should have an inexpensive spare propeller and wrench on board when going for trips on these larger inland lakes.

I don't know which ramp you used, but, with Burt or Mullet both almost being 10 miles long. it can be a hassle (like [HOOSIER] said) getting back to where you started from.
EJO
"Clumsy Cleat"look up what it means
50th edition 2008 Montauk 150, w/60HP Mercury Bigfoot

User avatar
djahncke
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2015 6:30 pm

Re: Burt Lake Speed Test

Postby djahncke » Sat Oct 24, 2015 11:02 pm

I enjoyed that run across.

My recollection is White Water was the only other boat that kept their speed up all the way across the lake. While I did not make note of my top speed, I do know that earlier in the summer I hit a shade of 50 statue mph while running the St.Mary's River with Manic Moment. So I assume I was hitting in the high 40's in the "Burt Lake race".

jimh
Posts: 6759
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2015 12:25 pm
Location: Michigan, Lower Peninsula
Contact:

Re: Burt Lake Speed Test

Postby jimh » Thu Oct 29, 2015 1:16 am

David (aka HOOSIER) did not go back to the launching ramp he launched from. That ramp was at the extreme northern end of Mullet Lake, and it would have taken David three or four hours longer to get there.

David wisely took the advice offered by Christine to just get back to the launch ramp in Indian River. We transferred Kathy (David's wife) to another boat, and she ran at full speed back to BYBROOK where their truck and trailer were parked. Kathy then hauled the trailer back the 15-miles to meet David in Indian River, rather than waiting four hours for David to chug-chug back to the ramp on Mullet Lake.

David and Kathy, along with PAU HANNA, made it back to BYBROOK in time for a drink before Elsa's delicious dinner was served.

Hoosier
Posts: 125
Joined: Sat Oct 10, 2015 8:04 pm

Re: Burt Lake Speed Test

Postby Hoosier » Thu Oct 29, 2015 9:58 pm

To add to Don's comment about running with Manic Moment, my 1992 23 Walkaround, I self limited a little over 43 mph. The boat is a non Whaler Drive model (aka "notched transom") with twin 2010 Yamaha F150 four stroke engines.
1978 Outrage V20 with 2004 Suzuki DF-115. 1992 23 Walkaround with two 2010 Yamaha F-150s.

6992WHALER
Posts: 18
Joined: Sat Oct 17, 2015 3:14 pm

Re: Burt Lake Speed Test

Postby 6992WHALER » Wed Nov 11, 2015 8:47 pm

Do not count Don's little boat out. After much trim work, she was running at 44.7 mph.
Next year we will have to put Holly Marie in the race. Her top end of 56 mph will be hard to catch. I will make sure to bring her up with a near empty fuel tank.

jimh
Posts: 6759
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2015 12:25 pm
Location: Michigan, Lower Peninsula
Contact:

Re: Burt Lake Speed Test

Postby jimh » Thu Nov 12, 2015 9:15 am

If DON'S DAUNTLESS can hit 44.7-MPH then she'd be passing my boat. That is very fast for that 17-footer.

6992WHALER
Posts: 18
Joined: Sat Oct 17, 2015 3:14 pm

Re: Burt Lake Speed Test

Postby 6992WHALER » Thu Nov 12, 2015 12:45 pm

At 44.7 mph CONTINUOUSWAVE is lot more stable. DON's DAUNTLES was having a hard time tracking , lots of chime walk. I had to back off when we encountered a pretty small boat wake as she was just too unstable at that speed. But I can say she managed 44.7 mph for several hair raising minutes that day.