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Lake Michigan Carferry (SS Badger) as part of US 10

Started by oscar, September 10, 2018, 09:24:23 PM

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SEWIGuy

Again, why are you asking all of these hypotheticals?  There isn't chronic car theft on the SS Badger.  I can't even recall one incident.  I'm sure they have their system down.


kphoger

Well, I imagine that any person stopping at any vehicle would raise suspicion, considering that all drivers at that point are heading to the passenger check-in, with no good reason to stop along the way.
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triplemultiplex

Usually, you can board the vessel with enough time to go to the stern of the ship and watch them drive your car aboard.  That's been my experience.

The queuing area for the vehicles is restricted to passengers and personnel, so you're got going to have randos snooping around.  Plus they have security cams.  Beside it's not like one is going to just leave valuable stuff out in plain sight.  That'd be dumb for any place you leave your car.

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Bruce

Did the ferry have any announcements for car owners who needed to silence their alarms? It's a not-infrequent occurrence on Washington State Ferries (where drivers are allowed to stay in their cars, or have in-and-out access from the decks).
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NWI_Irish96

Quote from: Bruce on July 27, 2021, 04:26:32 PM
Did the ferry have any announcements for car owners who needed to silence their alarms? It's a not-infrequent occurrence on Washington State Ferries (where drivers are allowed to stay in their cars, or have in-and-out access from the decks).

I didn't see or hear any instructions regarding alarms.
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wanderer2575

Just saw that the Badger's operations have been suspended until August 19th.  I don't know when this started.

Quote
For the safety of our Passengers and Crew we have suspended sailings until August 19th due to a Crew Member exposed to and later testing positive for COVID-19.

Big John


JREwing78

It's disappointing that the parent company never saw fit to bring in a sister ferry before the S.S. Badger had its ramp failure. It's the only cross-lake ferry that accepts RVs, travel trailers, and semi trucks. Even some passenger cars are too long to go on the Milwaukee-Muskegon ferry.

Clearly the heyday of this lake crossing is behind it; I didn't know until recently the S.S. Badger used to do year-round crossings. The period they run the twice-daily crossings has also dwindled down significantly over time. Obviously, having competition closer to a bigger population of likely users also limits their ability to compete. Having grandfathered-in coal boilers also doesn't help matters.

I would love to see a rethink of the Manitowoc-Ludington crossing with smaller, faster ferries still capable of handling semis and farm equipment, running more frequent daily crossings. But I have to wonder if the next news article about this isn't an announcement that the S.S. Badger won't be back at all in 2024, with no replacement vessels.  It would be a blow to both Manitowoc and Ludington, particularly Ludington.

I'm glad I made the crossing a few years ago. I wonder if I'll get another opportunity.

jzn110

Quote from: JREwing78 on August 02, 2023, 10:40:01 AM
It's disappointing that the parent company never saw fit to bring in a sister ferry before the S.S. Badger had its ramp failure. It's the only cross-lake ferry that accepts RVs, travel trailers, and semi trucks. Even some passenger cars are too long to go on the Milwaukee-Muskegon ferry.

Clearly the heyday of this lake crossing is behind it; I didn't know until recently the S.S. Badger used to do year-round crossings. The period they run the twice-daily crossings has also dwindled down significantly over time. Obviously, having competition closer to a bigger population of likely users also limits their ability to compete. Having grandfathered-in coal boilers also doesn't help matters.

I would love to see a rethink of the Manitowoc-Ludington crossing with smaller, faster ferries still capable of handling semis and farm equipment, running more frequent daily crossings. But I have to wonder if the next news article about this isn't an announcement that the S.S. Badger won't be back at all in 2024, with no replacement vessels.  It would be a blow to both Manitowoc and Ludington, particularly Ludington.

I'm glad I made the crossing a few years ago. I wonder if I'll get another opportunity.

The vessel itself is just fine. It was the loading ramp at their dock in Ludington that had the problem. The loading ramp is supported by two large counterweight structures on either side of it, and one of those structures collapsed after the underwater pilings it was mounted on gave way. It's not entirely surprising considering those counterweight towers are likely over 100 years old, which is also why I believe the Badger's parent company intends to replace the pilings for both counterweights so that the other one doesn't fail.

And because it was the loading ramp that had the problem, having a sister ship wouldn't help in this scenario, as neither vessel would be able to load or unload anyway. (And the Badger does have a sister ship, the Spartan, but it hasn't sailed since 1979 and has been largely harvested for parts to keep the Badger operating.)

Moose

#109
Correct, the Badger is quite fine..

As to the Spartan, Badger and Spartan shared the same ramp on both ends. Back in the day when the ran both.. they would pass in the middle of the lake.

The Ferry now has a much brighter future thanks to the Interlake purchase in 2020. Interlake has been trying to reinvest in the car ferry operation. They are a company well versed in running older large lake vessels.

If Spartan does come back, it will be as a diesel boat. Interlake is well experienced in steam to diesel conversions on lake boats.
In 2021 Spartan had an engineering survey done, and found the hull was in good shape. Badger was also drydocked in 2021 and had its largest overhaul in years.




KCRoadFan

Well, I suppose if anyone wants to clinch US 10, that will have to wait until next year...

Big John

Bumping as the SS Badger is set to resume service on May 17.



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