Hi everyone, I was going out Jupiter inlet this past week in my beloved 233. It was ebb tide, almost slack low (I know wrong time to go out) with an onshore wind so the rip was built up in the mouth of the inlet. To make matters worse, as we were getting into the rough stuff, a larger boat passed by us going in. So the waves stacked up and we took a big one over the bow, over the windshield and into the boat. All that seawater immediately drained into my engine compartment / bilge and caused the motor to stall out and wouldn't re-start.
Luckily, we were already out of the mouth of the inlet and drifted south, out of the rip before things really got bad. We anchored, the pump quickly removed the water, got her dried out and restarted - the rest of the day was fine. However, the entire experience was scary enough that I'm questioning whether the boat is actually sea worthy enough for me to take my family out of that inlet again. Sure it rides great through just about everything i've ever had it in - but if the only place for green water to drain is the motor - i'm afraid we'll eventually take another wave and lose the engine again - a horrible situation if you're in the middle of the inlet.
I wanted to ask if this has ever happened to anyone else and how you may have modified or rigged your boat to be prepared for a wave that enters the cockpit.
Brent that is a nasty inlet that requires local knowledge. It does not matter what type or size boat you have the ocean (inlets) demands respect at all times. I have seen a large charter boat coming into this inlet and get swallowed up and the captain was thrown overboard from top flybridge by large ground swells. This is on a youtube video ck it out ! You have to pick your days to play in the ocean no matter how big or small you are.
Brent this is the youtube video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5MhIxRWnBmI
Thanks Rick, i've seen this one before. they say it's the most dangerous inlet in FL - i think i'll use the palm beach inlet from now on... even still - i think any offshore boat will take some green water, no matter how careful the captain is. whether you get caught in bad weather, taking an odd wave while drift fishing, inlets, etc. The guys over at THT gave me some good ideas to deal with the water coming into the boat. things like building a small dam around the bottom of the moter box to control the water draining into the bilge, sealing the motor box, putting waterproofing on the ignition, larger/more bilge pumps, scuppers in the floor to bilge, etc... that's the kind of info i'm looking for... i have to believe, with the number of 233's going really far offshore, for the past 40 years almost, that this has happened to others and folks have come up with ways to deal with it..
I agree with you using the deeper inlets. Boynton, Boca, Hillsboro and Haulover are all shallow inlets in south Florida and can be dangerous especially with outgoing tides The mods you mentioned will help out . I've also been caught in rougher seas than i'd like to admit. My boat has 2 large Rule bilge pumps at all times. Also keep your boats batteries up high and out of the bilge . I was just trying to tell you a rough ocean can be bad for any size boat. Glad to hear that you want to be safe for your family while enjoying your boat !
I am currently recoring the entire fwd deck of my 64 233. Power is 2 3.0 130 mercs Io's.
Cockpit sole is out, will be raising 3 1/2" with 2 very large scuppers thru transom. Engine box will be cut the 3 1/2" AND will be modified with a lip inside and will close on a gasket.
My experience in pacific taught me value of TOTAL watertight cockpit with BIG very BIg scuppers.
The 2 #.0,s are fwd enough and light enough to keep W/L about 1 1/2" above chine at rest.
So the 3 1/2" sole raise will give good drainage.
Fuel tank will be fwd to bulkhead, Batteries (2) fwd as raised sole gives room.
Everthing is being done to lighten as much as possible.
Yes inlets are fun I grew up? with Bakers Haulover when the arched bridge would have breakers at times in the area between jetties and bridge.. Very seasoned charter types had wet pants at times..I have seen a few broach there and these were 38-45' boats.
My last 233 was west coast single 350, I do not believe you will get a better sea boat 24' long.
I currently have the 233 and a 36 Grand Banks, I like the 233 because she is quicker to respond in a following sea.. but both are fine deep water boats.