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WakeWorld Discussion Board » >> Boats, Accessories & Tow Vehicles Archive » Archive through November 17, 2003 » Can you have too much ballast? « Previous Next »
By Greg Wasson (lhlocal) on Wednesday, November 05, 2003 - 4:04 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
I know this may sound like a stupid question, or it may have been here before. Thanks to help from Kevin and Dave, Im removing the two 200lb rear hard tanks and replacing them with 2 540lb sacs. Im leaving the mid 500lb sac,and plan to add lead to the front. Im only planning on adding about 400lbs to keep the bowrise minimal. Altogether it should be around 1500 or so. The reason for my question is the salesman looked at me like I was nuts when I told him my plan. I know too much is bad when its a safety or power issue. Whats everyone think, and what des everybody else run? We also usually only have 4 guys in the boat. Oh yeah, I have a wedge, but Im in no hurry to drop it after seeing Greg's pics. Thanks guys.
By William Ely (projectely4) on Wednesday, November 05, 2003 - 5:56 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
with that much weight i wouldn't use the wedge.
By Thane Dogg (thane_dogg) on Wednesday, November 05, 2003 - 7:03 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
1500 sounds pretty good. I'd add a little more if you're not gonna use the wedge.

Today we had my friend's '03 VLX weighted like this: Full MLS (front and rear), fat buddy in each locker next to the hard tank (not all the way full about 200#), then a sack in the bow (about #350), he doesn't have the wedge and at 23.5 and 78 feet the wake was freakin' stupendous. They were riding at 70 at 21.5 and they said it was really good there too.

By Mike Buckingham (sdrider) on Wednesday, November 05, 2003 - 7:12 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Hey Thane, I see it didn't take you long to post a new profile pic from your session today! Was that behind Bill's boat or the '03 VLX?
By trace (trace) on Wednesday, November 05, 2003 - 7:57 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
some boats are fine with 2000 lbs, while others struggle with 1k. VLX's handle weight well, as do several others. i run about 2k in mine and usually ~4 riders; never heard a complaint on the wake. with more ppl in the boat i'll usually run a little lighter.
By Greg Wasson (lhlocal) on Wednesday, November 05, 2003 - 9:37 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Thanks for the advice so far. Last season was my first of really riding again, after not really riding for almost ten years. We've been slowing uping the boat speed. (22 or so) We've also been adding more rope (70 to 75') What I'm hoping to gain is more of a lip at that length. Right now there doesn't seem to be much.

Also I'd rather not use the wedge. Sometimes its more of a hassle to have to worry about babying the boat. Its done a bender once, and we have an updated wedge, but I still remember hopping in the water, and seeing the wedge behind the boat.

Thanks for all the input.

By Thane Dogg (thane_dogg) on Thursday, November 06, 2003 - 9:27 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Mike - awesome session yesterday. That was behind the '03 VLX. I'm the most spoiled wake-whore there is.
By Rod Rinnert (deltahoosier) on Thursday, November 06, 2003 - 9:57 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Hey Greg,

I have the 2002 VLX and this is what I do and most of the people I know do.

In the rear, I have the stock MLS with the the 200 lbs ea tanks in the rear. I have used everything from the larger sacks filled half way with about 200 lbs each in the rear or lead of equal weight in the rear (400 extra/ up to 800 lbs total with MLS and weight).

The front I use the Stock MLS at 500 lbs and at one time had sacks to fill the area under the front bow cushions and then use another 300 pound sack up front. In the summer I would fill it so it would fit under the front bow cushion (not as much weight but usually have more people in the boat then too) I figure it was at least another 500 lbs up front. Now I have about 150 in lead up front with the sack. I would like to get more lead sometime. That is around 1000 pounds up front.

I also use the wedge. You will not be disappointed with this setup. The wedge will add the peak you need. I would not ride below 22 mph with this much weight. I ride at 24.7 and most of the people I ride with are at least at 23 mph. I ride at 70' or 75' depending on what I am working on and my high flying friends will run 80' to 85' feet of line behind the boat. I do not know how big you are, but, slowing down will only cause your board to drag in the water and end up making you frustated with your riding. The wake will be plenty big. The nice thing is that it will be perfect with 4 people. When I have more people, I will just do a 20 or 30 second drain on the rear tanks and the wake is still perfect and big and the boat will plain out better.

I really am not a fan of taking out the back tanks due to warranty issues.

(Message edited by deltahoosier on November 06, 2003)

(Message edited by deltahoosier on November 06, 2003)

By Rod Rinnert (deltahoosier) on Thursday, November 06, 2003 - 10:09 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Also Greg,

The wake at 22 mph will be very wide at 70' feet of rope and almost impossible at 75'. The Malibu wakes are a little wider than lets say an X2 (old X-Star) or a Super Air. Basically, you have your work cut out for you at that speed.

Also, at the lower speeds, extra weight and the wedge up, I notice my wake looks a little washed out. I have to empty the stock ballast to run the boat that slow with a clean wake.

By Porter (mikep) on Thursday, November 06, 2003 - 10:34 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Hey Greg. My buddy Dave has two 540s in the rear and the 500 in the front. We also throw a 200 pound sack in the bow sometimes. He does not have the wedge. With that setup it barely even affects the way his boat rides or steers. It planes super easy. I think once you get to about 2500-3000 pounds in the VLX you will start feeling it. I also ride in a VLX that has hard tanks, plus two 540s in the back, another 540 in the bow, plus the wedge. That setup does affect the way the boat handles, but I think it's more the wedge than antying else. The wake is insane though.

A lot of boat salesmen aren't very good wakeboarders and think that the stock ballasts are fine. Personally I think the stock ballasts are a joke. The VLX with the stock ballast and no wedge just doesn't have that big of a wake for an advanced rider. Once you get to 2000 pounds or more you will be stoked even without the wedge. If you have a wedge then I think some extra lead in the bow is a good idea.

By Mike Roese (miker) on Thursday, November 06, 2003 - 11:42 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
stock ballasts are indeed a joke. They are a great start but that is all. In my 98 sunsetter (no stock ballast) we put about 900 lbs in the bow (400 in locker, 400 on top of locker, and 100 in lead on the cushions) and 2500 in the rear (1200 lb fat seat in back with 550 on top of back seat and 400 or so on in front of the 550 on top of the fat seat, and 300 lbs of lead in the rear locker). THis is with 3-4 people in the boat. With more we dont fill the sack on top of the fat seat. Yeah it takes some time to plane out but it is sweet to ride. Once you are used to this much weight it is hard to ride smaller. It just feels weird. With a little luck we will be supercharging the boat soon. No more plaining problems then, I wonder where else we can fit some weight?
By Maverick LTD (maverick_gear) on Thursday, November 06, 2003 - 2:23 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
a couple of my bros ride for malibu and they have the Just ride VLX the weighting is like this, stock Mls with 320 pounds of lead on either side of the motor, then a 540 on top of that which will only fill up to about 400 which makes 72o on either side of the motor then 2 lead bars on the floor then 2 540 pound sacs up front equalling 1580 up front they also leave the wedge down. i've been in there when there were as many as 6 people in the boat so 2480 in the back 1580 up front and 900 pounds of people, needless to say the boat has a torque prop and a ginormous wake and is overloaded. this wake is rediculous.
thanks malibu you bring a smile to my face!!

By Greg Wasson (lhlocal) on Thursday, November 06, 2003 - 3:54 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Again thanks for all the great input. I just wanted to make sure I was doing the right thing. I think Im gonna shoot for just under 2000lbs plus wedge. I think the wedge really does improve the shape of the wake. I can't wait to get started on my little project, and then stare at the boat all winter.

By aaron wilson (absolutofft) on Friday, November 07, 2003 - 1:43 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Post some wakepics of these boats with 3000+ lbs of ballast!
By Porter (mikep) on Friday, November 07, 2003 - 9:01 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Here's a pic of one of the VLX's we ride behind with the wedge, MLS full, two extra 540s in the rear hatches, another 540 in the bow, and two people in the boat.

By Jeff Reese (jeffr) on Friday, November 07, 2003 - 9:30 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
That wake looks HUGE. Where are the pics from...FL? Who has the VLX... I have only seen a couple on Lake Samm? Are the bags in the back in addition to hard tanks or do they replace the tanks?? If its in addition to tanks...SICK! Guess you can't have too much weight.

By Rod Rinnert (deltahoosier) on Friday, November 07, 2003 - 9:37 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Ahhhhhh...... That looks like my baby. Look how clean that wake is way in the back. Only thing I have to say about the Wake in this configuration, Is there is not a lot of transistion. That means you need to either ride with a lot of vert or take it to the flats. You will die if you try and ride without edge and hope to just skim the tops. I would leave the weight in and put the wedge up to ramp the wake out a little if you are working on something that you do not have a good edge on. For me, I ate a lot of poo working on my toe sides fully loaded. That is why I love my boat. I can totally change the shape in seconds.
I have to take my boat in for warranty work next weekend. Hopefully I will have it back for the Thanksgiving weekend and get to see my wake again.

By Porter (mikep) on Friday, November 07, 2003 - 9:45 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Hey Jeff. Those pics were in Portland on the Willamette river. Remember Andy Saylor? He lives on the river down there any bought a VLX this year. The river is butter! And yes, it's in addition to the tanks. The wake is sweet, but it takes forever to plane - well worth it though.

Dave Maddock also has a VLX, but he lives on the water in Leschi so no Lake Samm riding. It's good for early morning sets on the way to work though. He rides without a wedge and just uses weight. The wedge makes for a bit steeper wake I think.

By Andrew Stevers (thepizzaman) on Friday, November 07, 2003 - 11:16 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
now this is my kinda board. big wakes here. I see a few ppl have mentioned the lead bars here. check out my posting in the classifieds. and let me know what you think if you have a chance.
clik the link for detail. the bags are filled with steel pellets. its like a real heavy bean bag. Lead does have a higher density than steel but i think these shot bags are also alot cheaper than lead. and the bags are flexible.
Anyhow I just sold my malibu sportster but when we had it i had 1000 lbs of steel with 5 or 6 ppl on board. we didn't use the wedge.

By Rod Rinnert (deltahoosier) on Friday, November 07, 2003 - 12:05 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Steel will rust and run through the bags and ruin your carpet

By Greg Wasson (lhlocal) on Saturday, November 08, 2003 - 4:14 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
This maybe a stupid question. Can I run the overflow tube from my hard tank into the 540lb sac, and then use the pump from the hard tank to empty the 540lb sac and the hard tank? Just wondering. Its for the vlx. This would give me the ability to run even more rear ballast without adding pumps.
By Rod Rinnert (deltahoosier) on Tuesday, November 11, 2003 - 9:14 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
I am not sure I would use the overflow. The overflow allows for a low back pressure relief so you do not damage anything. You may or may not damage something by tying into this. Depends on the design of the tanks, tubes, and pumps. You have two pumps already. One for fill and one to empty. Just use both for what they are used for. You can get fancy and use a T vavle of somesort to choose which tank/m sack and you may have to add a check valve in there to keep from filling one sack through the drain line if you tye that together. Just get some lead and be done with it. If you used the wedge, you do not need that much lead. 200 lbs on each side will be perfect. After that, it gets hard to plain and you will sometimes start to pourpose a little with too much wieght back there.
By Rene Rioux (norcal_99) on Tuesday, November 11, 2003 - 3:06 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Do you guys burn a lot of gas with that much weight?

I run my X-Star with only the stock ballast filled. It planes in less than 3 seconds, and it has a great clean steep wake at all lengths between 55-85 feet with speeds between 19 and 23.5 MPH.

By cdm (cdm) on Tuesday, November 11, 2003 - 3:36 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Porter- how fast and at what length is that pic? Looks very short and slow!

Maverick LTD- show me this torque prop.. What size is it? What rpms/ speed are they running at? What motor? I don't buy it..

By Stefani (wakelvr) on Tuesday, November 11, 2003 - 5:04 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Here is what I put in the X2/Xstar. We put an additional 900lbs in the boat in addition to the 900lbs of ballasts. So total weight is 1800lbs, and we usually ride with 3 or 4 riders total. The three riders here are riding at 75, 80 and 85 feet. Speeds range from 23-24.5. The wake is steep, firm and clean... and the boat handles well and plains out within seconds.

Best of luck!

By Darren Yearsley (ralph) on Tuesday, November 11, 2003 - 5:43 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Since we are doing wakes and weight. Sanger V210 wake with 2100 pounds, all hidden, all automatic + 4 peeps. 22.5 mph, 75 foot rope, 5 foot 5 or so rider

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