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When is fast too fast?

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Old 04-02-2011, 10:02 PM
  #91
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I've been reading posts on here over the past few months about guys building new boats with monster power. My fear is we are starting to get to the point where things are going to start ending badly in the not to distant future.

Boat manufacturers are building lighter and lighter boats out of high tech composites, and using aero techniques to increase boat speeds (such as widening tunnels, etc), but at the same time modern engine management systems are making monster engines almost practical to live with on a daily basis. With turbos starting to replace superchargers (it took long enough!), the amount of power that is starting to be made, and being made available in high performance pleasure boats, is almost disturbing. So while the boats are getting faster on their own, the power being offered in the not to distant future will at some point become a real concern... if we haven't already started to cross the line.

While I know some folks are thinking, "180 mph+ is nothing, I want to go faster... you're being a wussy, blah blah, blah..." The reality is I'm a speed junky, but think about how fast 180+ mph on the water is. That's really, really moving considering the surface you're running on is dynamic in nature and that many of these boats being built are open top pleasure boats!

The some open top boats being built this year are going to be offered with 1500+ hp engines... and I'm sure 2,000+ hp engines are out there waiting to be tested for customers to buy. Any customer with enough money can buy them.

Think about that. Any Rodney Dangerfield with a big wallet and no boating experience can walk into Skater, MTI, etc and buy a boat that will run 200+ mph these days. All it takes is money. Add in some ego, maybe a couple of drinks for good measure, and we have the possibility of reading some tragic headlines. Sadly, chances are this guy will likely be taking others out with him... And I dont see this being an isolated tragedy either, it's only going to become more frequent as the boats get faster and the engines more powerful.

Are we at the point where we need to start being concerned or even policing ourselves? Personally I think we're really close, if not already there. I fear we'll be reading some disturbing headlines in the not to distant future.
I commented about this a year or two ago when Mr. Big Check-Writer, comes a boat builder writes a check for 135mph V-Bottom, then rolls it injuring and or killing an innocent passenger. I do not blame the operator, on all these occassions when an accident occurs that is too simple of an explanation as doesn't hold water with me, and I don't buy the bullsh*t that the boat is built safe, because ejecting passengers isn't safe, so sell that line of sh*t elsewhere. If I am the plaintiffs attorney in one of these cases, I would win, but I practice criminal law, not products liability law.

There will be time when the states step in, and boating as we know it today will have speed restrictions, mandatory classes, and further restrictions. Politicians like to pass laws that say the law is intended to save lives. It is happening now.

Last edited by Smarty; 04-02-2011 at 10:04 PM.
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Old 04-03-2011, 07:55 AM
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I commented about this a year or two ago when Mr. Big Check-Writer, comes a boat builder writes a check for 135mph V-Bottom, then rolls it injuring and or killing an innocent passenger. I do not blame the operator, on all these occassions when an accident occurs that is too simple of an explanation as doesn't hold water with me, and I don't buy the bullsh*t that the boat is built safe, because ejecting passengers isn't safe, so sell that line of sh*t elsewhere. If I am the plaintiffs attorney in one of these cases, I would win, but I practice criminal law, not products liability law.
I am not sure I am understanding what you are saying. From what I read, it appears that you would blame and sue the boat manufacturer for building a fast boat for an inexperienced customer and would not blame the customer for a crash? How does that make any sense?

And since when does a boat that can eject a passenger equal an unsafe boat? You can be ejected from any boat, be it a sailboat, pontoon boat, CC, sportfisherman, or high performance. Are all these boats built unsafe? Should every boat made have a full canopy and rescue air?

What ever happened to personal responsibility? The freedom to buy what you want knowing full well the risks involved and owning up to it when something happens is what used to make this country a great place. Now you can buy what you want and when you screw up you can blame it on someone else who wasnt involved at all.

Maybe I wasnt seeing the sarcasm in your post and you didnt mean what you wrote, if so, I apologize.
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Old 04-03-2011, 08:46 AM
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Every motorsport is dangerous. I'll bet a lot more people die in snowmobile crashes every year than in boat accidents. Stupid thread (IMO).
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Old 04-03-2011, 09:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Catmando View Post
Ever heard of rev limiters in cars? They have them.

As for "guide aids" I would assume he's talking about all wheel drive, electronic stability control, traction control, ready alert braking, rain brake support and things of that nature which even the Chrysler 300 offers now, not to mention Audi, Mercedes Benz, Rolls Royce etc etc...
Yeap, Every damn econobox has them nowadays... Good Morning Illinois. All Wheel drive is not a limiter, itīs a feature that getīs you in trouble not faster but harder 99.99% for the drivers, the rest are Finnish... Remember it was a Finn who put the Audi Quattro on the world map first and latest... good friends and former and even occasional co-workers in this latest stunt

What has it to do with boating...well all of us enjoy fast powerboats too and know when the Baltic kicks back and itīs time to slow down or stay home. The Team Boss has even a Captains license.

Last edited by MikeyFIN; 04-03-2011 at 11:29 AM.
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Old 04-03-2011, 09:24 AM
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Every motorsport is dangerous. I'll bet a lot more people die in snowmobile crashes every year than in boat accidents. Stupid thread (IMO).
What has fast pleasure boats, snowmobiles or XXX have to do with Motorsport???
* Nothing cause the arenīt prepared for racing 100%... NONE.
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Old 04-03-2011, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Philm View Post

What ever happened to personal responsibility? The freedom to buy what you want knowing full well the risks involved and owning up to it when something happens is what used to make this country a great place. Now you can buy what you want and when you screw up you can blame it on someone else who wasnt involved at all.

Maybe I wasnt seeing the sarcasm in your post and you didnt mean what you wrote, if so, I apologize.
+1.

Thereīs a sucker and nowadays an Idiot born every minute...
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Old 04-03-2011, 09:35 AM
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I make sure they know what they're getting into before they go because goddammit I don't want someone telling me to slow down when I might be spending $200-$400 for gas and I have invested nearly $100,000 in my boat and I can't drive it fast?

Donīt Consider racing either then cause thereīs lots of rules there too...
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Old 04-03-2011, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by C_Spray View Post
In my younger days when I raced them, they were known as "enduro Karts", and ran on full-size race tracks. With only 11 hp (100cc stock McCulloch) they would run in the 90's. With twin modified 135cc engines, well...
Ever tried FormulaF Karts... aka SuperKarts... tops around 180 at best and faster than Formula1 in the corners...

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In general, I have found performance boaters to be better-informed and better mariners than most of the "skippers" on the water. The issue is that a huge screw-up at the tiller of a sailbote at 6 knots or a cruiser at 20 knots is simply not going to generate the spectacular (and possibly tragic) results that a screw-up at high speed will. By electing to purchase the boats that we do, we are implicitly accepting a higher level of responsibility for our actions.

"Let's be careful out there."
Id say sailboaters can also get especially the offshore racers in a lot of trouble and many are killed in races...at 20knots downwind with a 3000sqfeet spinnaker you do not want to make mistakes with the tiller...it would kill you.

Plus have to disagree with boating skills in general with sailboaters vs powerboaters.. maybe itīs just me as Iīve raced both in offshore.

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Old 04-03-2011, 10:10 AM
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Originally Posted by BenPerfected View Post
Here is another perspective. In ideal conditions with the right set up and experieced crew, I would say the top manageable speed is about 3 MPH per foot in a vee and about 4 MPH per foot in a cat.
That's probably a good rule of thumb. In addition, any vehicle is built with an intended purpose (and speed range). Baja doesn't build boats to travel at 150 mph so the material, bottom, etc aren't designed to perform at those speeds. Mystic builds its hull for the 150+ mph range because that's where their boats live most of the time. They handle predictability when traveling at these speeds.

Another scary part of boats going fast is not only the inexperienced or drunk driver but someone pushing a particular hull way faster than it is intended to go. Put enough horespower behind any hull and it can reach unsafe speeds. All boats have a "sweet spot" and perform and maneuver with some predictability within that range. I'm more worried about the guy with the monster motor in a hull that wasn't meant to handle it.
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Old 04-03-2011, 10:36 AM
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that last post sums it up.also keep in mind most newer designed boat just cruise so dam fast u get use to that speed. some guys dont have the seat time,and they should understand any speed the are going,and as we know anything can happen.
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