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Old 09-11-2016, 08:35 PM   #1
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Location: Southgate, MI. 48195 USA
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Default My Middle Bass Island/Put In Bay Vacation

A little late in posting this but here goes.

On Monday August 8th I headed out for a weeks vacation. My destinations were Middle Bass Island and Put In Bay both in the Lake Erie waters of Ohio. As with many trips my first stop was the fuel dock to top off my tanks. I pumped in $249 dollars of gas totaling just over 74 gallons of fuel.



The fuel price was down a bit from my previous trip a couple of weeks earlier. I departed the fuel dock at 10 AM headed down the channel and out onto Lake Erie.

I decided to try my run at hull speed. I throttled up to 1600 RPM and was making about 8 MPH. There were 25 MPH winds out of the northeast so the lake was a bit lumpy. I was battling 4' to 6' rollers on the lake off my forward port side. I really could not have run much faster even if I wanted to.



I don't think my cell phone pics do justice to just how rough it really was. It was definitely a lumpy ride but still enjoyable. I pretty much had to stand all the way as there was just to much back and forth motion to sit down.

Passing West Sister Island just about the half-way point to Middle Bass Island.



Running at 8 MPH I arrived at the entrance to Middle Bass Island State Park at 2:30 PM. A 4 1/2 hour trip. It sure was nice to finally be at my first destination. I called them on channel 69 and was told to go to dock 19. Since it was very windy and I was by myself I asked if I could have some assistance getting into my dock. They sent a person to assist me.



The marina office. This is really a very nice marina. The showers are air conditioned so it dosen't get to steamy in the shower room. I highly recommend if you are in the area that you give this marina a try.



My boat at the dock at MBI State Park.

Tuesday morning at 11 AM I departed MBI State Park and headed over to Put In Bay just a short distance away. I was looking forward to my visit there. I was last there August of 2010.



Put In Bay here I come. Headed towards PIB's harbor.



Viewing the Perry Peace Memorial Monument from inside the harbor on my way to the PIB docks. This monument stands as a memorial to those who perished in the Battle Of Lake Erie during the war of 1812. It also celebrates the 200+ years of peace between the USA and Canada.



After docking at the PIB docks being hungry I headed to the Little Galley for a burger and fries. This is a great place for a burger and fries.



Looking at the PIB docks from The Little Galley eating area.



Sunset at Put In Bay August 9th.

At 10:30 AM I headed out from PIB towards School House Bay to set up for one of our regatta contests the flying mile. I was serving as the Committee Boat for the event. On my way out of the harbor I picked up some seaweed in my props. I throttled back to idle and tried to shift into neutral. My starboard transmission shifted into neutral but the port transmission would not shift into neutral. I ran below into the cabin and managed to shift the port side transmission into the neutral position. When I went back topside I noticed that the boat was turning to starboard. The port transmission was still engaged. I then shifted the port transmission into reverse and it killed the engine. I restarted the engine and tried a couple more times to shift into neutral but to no avail. My port side transmission was stuck in forward. Well, I still had my duties to perform so I throttled up both engines and headed out to set up for the flying mile. I ran out to my position and dropped anchor to await those boats that were going to run in the event.

The Flying Mile event is where boats throttle up to WOT and make a run towards the committee boat. I have a radar gun to take readings of the top end speed of each boat. There are several classes of boats and flags are awarded to the winners in each class. All in all 16 boats participated over two days. The fastest boat was a small offshore that ran a 50 MPH top end speed.

On Thursday I ran in the event as my partner took the radar gun from me and I made a run towards his boat. I ran a 25 MPH run at WOT. That pretty much matched the top end speed when I had my sea trial of the boat last year. It is the top speed that my boat will run. I took a 1st place flag in my class for the event. Good thing my transmission was stuck in forward and not reverse.



My view from where I was set up for the Flying Mile contest. It was a hot and hazy day and the lake was calm.



Looking at A Dock as it was filled with participants from the regatta.



Sunset August 10th at Put In Bay.



Sunset August 12th. It had been a wet and stormy day and this is just after the last thunderstorm had passed by.

On Thursday afternoon my AC decided to stop working. After checking the system I determined that the seawater pump to the AC unit had ceased working. The unit was installed in 1996 according to the paperwork that came with the boat. I guess 20 years service is pretty good. I will be purchasing a new seawater pump this week and plan to do the install myself.

Sunday morning August 14th the regatta was coming to an end so it was time to head for home.



Good bye Put In Bay, hope to see you again next year.

I was glad that my tranny was stuck in forward. I decided to use both engines to head for home. Once clear of the harbor at PIB I throttled up to 2600 RPM. That gave me a running speed of 14 MPH. From the sounds the boat made this may very well be my boats sweet spot. Everything ran very well and everything seemed to be in sync. My fuel usage seemed very good. I believe that at that setting I was staying out of the secondaries of my 4 bbl carbs and fuel usage seemed to back that up. Crossing over at hull speed I used just under 1/4 tank. By the time I got back to Bolles Harbor I had used just over 1/2 tank.



Heading home across Lake Erie. The conditions were ideal. Waves were less than a foot and the boat ran well.

I had decided that I was not going to try to get into my dock at my marina on one engine. I have to make 3 90* turns to get into my slip. When I got close to Bolles Harbor I called Tow Boat US on my cell phone and explained my situation to the person that answered. They said they would meet me outside the harbor entrance and tow me into the marina.

When I arrived at the entrance to Bolles Harbor the tow boat was waiting for me. He hooked himself up on my starboard side and towed me into the harbor. I called Trouts, my marina and explained my situation. They assigned me to an outside dock so the tow boat would only have to make 1 90* turn to get me into the slip.

Several of the boaters at the marina saw me being towed in and they walked over to the slip to assist me and the tow boat operator to get me into the slip. I have to say that the money I paid for the unlimited towing with Boat US was well worth the money spent.

All in all it was a great vacation and I had a lot of fun even though it was tempered by the transmission problem. I most likely will wait until next year to have the transmission fixed. My daughters wedding is next month and all the money I have saved over the last year is budgeted for the wedding.

I do plan to have it looked at and a rough estimate made. Perhaps it is a minor problem that I could have fixed yet this season. If not I will fix the A/C problem and use the boat as a dockominium for the rest of the season. For the record I did open the engine compartment hatch when the tranny problem first started to check the linkage. I shifted the transmission into forward and reverse and the lever on the transmission did shift both directions. I am then assuming that the problem is internal.

I wonder how many boat bucks it will take to fix the issue. On the bright side she did bring me home. And, I did have a great time so in the grand scheme of things that is good.
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Old 09-12-2016, 02:20 AM   #2
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Great story Rick. We don't get to PIB much at all but we love to hit Middle Bass with friends. The state hit a home run when they built that marina. I assume you went to J. Walleyes when you were there.

I can relate to your wedding budget. I went through that this past June.

I see your in Southgate. I stay there when I visit AK Steel in Dearborn.
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Old 09-12-2016, 06:03 AM   #3
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+1 on MBI. Great place to spend a day or two. Dock there and take the ferry over to PIB. Save a lot of grief dealing with having to raft at PIB docks.
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Old 09-17-2016, 12:11 PM   #4
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Great report and pics, thanks for posting. I don't know why the waves always look small when you take a picture of them. I keep saying I'm going to stop @ Middle Bass because I haven't been there in 20+ years. Back then there was really nothing on Middle Bass.

Regarding your transmission, I have a single 454CI big block with a Velvet Drive model# 10-18-006 that I had to have rebuilt at the beginning of the season at a cost of $3,400. My transmission was leaking because a seal failed but when they cracked it open they found my discs to be pretty worn so they replaced them all. Depending on what is wrong with yours maybe this will give you an idea of what a total rebuild will cost.
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