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Author Topic:   SPORT 150: Installing Mills Bimini
walf posted 04-29-2005 07:28 AM ET (US)   Profile for walf   Send Email to walf  
I am going to purchase a new 150 SPORT. Apparently from reading reviews in these columns, most people say a Mills top is the best. To install it myself, does it require a lot of drilling into steel and fiberglass? If so, I might go for the Boston Whaler top which would come already installed.
bigjohn1 posted 04-29-2005 08:56 AM ET (US)     Profile for bigjohn1  Send Email to bigjohn1     
walf, my opinion only: let the factory deal with those hassles and buy your boat with a top pre-installed. I went with a factory top and have not been disappointed with its fit or finish. It also boils down to how much money you would be saving by going Mills, plus shipping charges, plus your labor and materials to do the install yourself. Plenty of Mills owners will chime in to recommend going that route as they ARE top-quality products, and if you will save considerable money, you might just want to go that route and do it yourself.
walf posted 04-29-2005 09:34 AM ET (US)     Profile for walf  Send Email to walf     
thanks for the reply.I am leaning toward the factory top.
Buckda posted 04-29-2005 09:57 AM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
My opinion:
When talking about Mills - it's good, top quality stuff. If you have a classic Whaler and want to use it for cruising, etc where their all-weather protection system will benefit you, they are the best option, since they designed the system specifically for the boat, and it looks great.

If you simpy want a bimini, there are plenty of places (including a local canvas place) where you can get good, quality tops. Mills might be that place, but they might not.

The real benefit of buying Mills is found for two primary reasons beyond the simple quality of their product:
1. To have the OEM top for your classic "just because" you want OEM
2. You either want or think you will later get the remaining parts to make the Mills all-weather enclosure.

Beyond that, going with the current OEM is a good option for a hassle-free experience, and if you bought without, you can typically go to either a local place or buy from the quality name-brands like TaylorMade.

Good luck.

walf posted 04-29-2005 10:52 AM ET (US)     Profile for walf  Send Email to walf     
this is probably a stupid question, but what is an OEM?
Buckda posted 04-29-2005 11:04 AM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
SOunds cheesy, but there ARE no stupid questions except the ones left unasked.

OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer. I.E. the vendor who sold Boston Whaler the part that came as original 'factory' equipment options.

There is a section of this site dedicated to providing information about OEM parts for Boston Whaler boats. For instance, Wilcox-Crittenden was the OEM for the navigational lights on classic 1980's era Outrages.

Make sense?

Enjoy the boat!


Buckda posted 04-29-2005 11:10 AM ET (US)     Profile for Buckda  Send Email to Buckda     
Forgot to clarify here:
For your boat, (Post-classic 150 Sport) Mills is NOT the OEM for the canvas. In the 1980's (I'm not sure when the relationship ended) Mills was OEM for canvas.

Now it's someone else, so ordering from your dealer will give you "OEM" canvas for your boat.

Just wanted to make sure that was clear.


jimh posted 04-30-2005 10:29 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
[Administrative thread. This discussion has been moved to this area.]

OEM is a common acronym in very widespread use, so it is often not explained. If you encounter an acronym which you do not understand, a good source for reference is:

As a general policy I ask people to eschew inventing acronyms, however there are thousands of them which are used and understood by almost everyone. For example, if I said I was listening to the FM radio, I would not expect that I would first have to tell you that FM stood for Frequency Modulation. Or if I said I went to the ATM, I was going to use an Automated Teller Machine. Or if I said an engine has 225-HP, you would probably understand that the acronym HP stood for horsepower.

In discussing parts and vendors, OEM is such a term, that is, it is very widely used. Therefore it is probably not reasonable to expect a full expansion of it at each use. Unfortunately, many people invent their own acronyms or employ acronyms that are very obscure. These definitely do need to be expanded and explained when used.

sportroyalwulf posted 04-30-2005 04:47 PM ET (US)     Profile for sportroyalwulf  Send Email to sportroyalwulf     
I have previously posted on bimini tops for the 150 Sport. I have procrastinated and have not made the move. Does anyone have experience with the Mills Bimini top for the Sport 150, either installing it themselves or having someone else do the install?
jimh posted 05-02-2005 09:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Administrative post
billsa posted 05-03-2005 11:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for billsa  Send Email to billsa     
I have a 2003 150 sport with the factory installed SS bimini
top. I have no real complaints other than the top must rest amid ship in a position that suspends the top without support when not in use. From previous posts on this same subject I understand the mills bimini actually slides on tracks that enable it rest forward on the bow gunwale when not in. You might want to search for previous posts on this subject - look for posts from a CW member - MOE.
Hope this helps.
Moe posted 05-04-2005 12:34 AM ET (US)     Profile for Moe  Send Email to Moe     
Unfortunately, with the new search engine, you can't search on Moe or on a particular model Whaler, such as 150 Sport any more. The latter returns all posts with "sport" in it.

Fortunately, you can still list all the topics from the last couple of years and use Internet Explorer's Find On This Page. That's how I found this previous thread on 150 Sport biminis.

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