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Discussion Starter #1
Thinking about trying the S.S. Badger Lake Michigan Carferry (Motorcycle) Service from Manitowoc WI to Ludington MI on my next eastward trip.

Any experiences? Looks like they gladly accept bikes providing you bring a pair of tie downs...which I have...but...

I've never tied down a bike (let alone my GL1800)....Do they assist? Is it so easy that "Even a caveman can do it"?

Have done Ferries in China and Europe, but never with a bike......

Thanks!
 
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I have never ridden on the Badger, I have used the Lake Express a few times and the Alaska Ferry's 100+ times. When we put our Wings on ferry's we try to make sure we are close enough to something to secure the tie down to. I hook one on each sides crash bars, leave the bike in gear on the side stand. In 43 years of traveling on the ferry's with bikes mine have never gotten a scratch. If the ferry hits something hard enough to knock the bikes down you will have bigger things to worry about :)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks! Sounds like they MUST have some good tie down points, as they REQUIRE that you bring 2 tiedowns.....appreciate the vote of confidence, though. Have shot a question to their website. Hope to get to your neck of the woods at some point....
 
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This picture was taken on the SS Badger in 2017. The silver GL1800 in the foreground is mine along with the Escapade trailer (trailer had to be disconnected). The floor for about 3 feet from the wall is covered by an iron grill that provides plenty of tie down opportunities. I used 2 ratchet straps. Not much space between vehicles.

Ron
 

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I used soft ties around the lower triple tree to the grate in the floor of the boat. Left the side stand down and made sure it was in contact with the floor once tied down. Went from the rear crash guards for the back. ( I know, I know, the crash guards aren't designed for that. Whatever!)

Bikes loaded first and unloaded last on our trip.

Enjoy the trip.
 

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The wife and I did the Badger on our way home from Yellowstone last year. I was pulling a trailer and the wife rides her own bike. They did not make me disconnect the trailer and strapping down very easy. You put the bike on the side stand and just put straps on the side stand side. I used soft straps and ratchet straps one on the front one on the back of each bike. If you need help there will be plenty people in there strapping their bike down that will be happy to help. Then just relax and enjoy the 4 hour ride across the lake. We came home the last week in June and had perfect weather sunny 77 no wind very calm. It was the perfect end to a great 2 week trip. We live in Grand Rapids so when we got off the boat only had about a 1 1/2 hour ride home. It sure beat going home thru Chicago traffic!!! When you load the bikes are the last on the boat but the first off. We had a great time and would be happy to take the Badger again.
 

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I too have used the Badger, I had rough. Weather 1 time that caused 2 bikes to tip over because the side stands gave out. Some scuffing of.the bikes they fell into but everyone was cool about it. The bikes had no center stands anyway. I use the center stand myself. Also, be there early and first in line like I was and you will get the corner spot.
 

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Ferried my Wing several times. Used the side stand it is much more secure with both wheels on the deck and the bike in gear. used soft ties for the triple tree and crash bars are ok in the rear. Luck to you. Tie the bike down so the side stand is still on the deck.

Fred
 
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