Hello fellow boaters,
This is the 1st post with many to come for my 1989 Supra Sun Sport. It has a 351 PCM engine that has not been converted to electronic ignition or efi. It is an open bow, the interior is in decent shape and the floor seems solid. I bought in June 2009 and use it primarily for wakesurfing and wakeboarding. I just graduated college and got a great job and finally have the money to put some upgrades into my boat!
My boat is currently completely stock other than a stereo system that has two exterior house speakers I got for free for tower speakers, a 12 in kicker L7 with a directed 800 amp that I had laying around, and 2 west marine 6x9’s that came with the boat. I had a couple queen-sized air mattresses that I threw in the bow and over the port side rear seat for my ballast system (good thing I have no pictures, it was pretty redneck)
My plans before summer hits (memorial day weekend- im going to be busy):
-Install a turn key 3 switch ballast system, my plan is to run four bags and three pumps. I found these Johnson pumps for 200ish that are reversible and pump 12 gpm and plan on using a separate water intake hole and running the one hole to these three pumps. i want to have basically the same set up that mikey has and run one bag in my rear locker over my gas tank which is plastic, I don’t think I will have any problems but if anyone has let me know. They I am going to redo my rear seat and run a bag under the back seat and then two bags under the front seating area. I am going to install a y pipe at one of the pumps and have a free floating hose with a shut off valve that I can pull out of the rear seat and fill a fat sac “brick” or two depending on how many people I have with me. I was planning on going with plastic tanks because I already have two of them and all I would need is the front bag.
-Does anyone know if I need an impeller set up to suck water into the pumps or will the reversible pumps create enough vacuum to get water up the hole in the boat? The Johnson pumps are similar to the jabsco ballast puppies but from what I found cheaper and more gallon per minute. It would really suck to install a nice ballast system, hit the button and have to then figure out some way to prime your pumps…. I just want it as turn key and have as big of a wake as possible… also do I really need 3 pumps or will one or two do the job. I want to fill up in about 5-10 minutes.. no later than 10.
-What bag is everyone running in the front area under the “seats” and has anyone had any problems with running a sac in the back swim locker that is plastic? Also I was thinking about trying to fit a sac under the floor right in front of the motor where the ski pylon used to be (I took that out). If anyone has done it, how much weight have you been able to put down there and do you think its worth the effort of ripping that part of the floor out?
- I have heard that if you weigh your boat down too much, the motor will actually sit below the water line and if you turn the motor off when your weighted down like this, water will actually come in through the flappers and over the manifold and fill the engine up with water and it’s a great way to water lock your motor and create all sorts of issues. I was told that you can extend your manifolds but my boat seems to run fine loaded down so I don’t want to go through the hassle unless I have too. Does the fresh air exhaust help with this problem, better flappers, and does anyone make a kit available for extending your manifolds? I checked today and you can get a manifold riser from sierra marine. Has anyone run this or has the flappers worked good enough?
My other plans that aren’t so important to me
-install 4 speakers in the interior of the boat and tower speakers that are not house speakers. Outdoor house speakers are just not cutting the mustard. They blast music but the only place is loud is 15-20 feet from the direction they are pointing, you can barely hear them when your surfing or wakeboarding. Im probably going to take out the 6x9’s also because they are pointed right next to the driver so I cant hear anything when I have the music cranked up and am towing people. I found an infinity set of tower speakers for 500ish that comes with 4 6 ˝’s and a amp with a mic. Infinity 6100M I believe is the model number. Anyone using those or recommend something else for around the same price? I have another amp sitting around that will use for the other 4 6 ˝’s I plan on installing in the front and rear of the boat. I really want the tower speakers to be able to project back so that the rider can hear the music… any suggestions on a set up would be great
- I need to redo all my gauges because half of them work and I would like to get my hands on some kind of perfect pass (my preference is the stargazer one). Gas gauge not working has upset me a few times.
-Thinking about doing fresh air exhaust but don’t really know what its all about other than not choking out the surfer with fumes. Any other added value? Also can you run a switchblade or wedge system at the same time? How expensive is it and where do you get it done at? Or is it that hard to do yourself and what is involved?
- I want to get a switchblade or try to find a wedge setup. I like the idea of the switchblade but the price is outrageous. I didn’t pay that much more for my boat!!! I defiantly want to ride behind a direct drive boat that has a switchblade in it before I drop the kind of money they are asking for one. I would think that with a ballast system and the switchblade, the wake would be just as good as any newer boat that would cost me a 4-5 times what I would have into mine. Has anyone had one behind an older supra or direct drive boat? What kind of difference does it make?
- I have a light bar on my tower and last summer I had some lights off a jeep that I bolted on there just to see if they would work. The only thing I could see is the front of the bow, nothing further and the same happened if you pointed them back to see the surfer or wakeboarder (I think its illeagle to ride at night and we were not partaking it those activities) . Are there any lights out there that project farther and would be able to not light up the bow or the back of the boat? I was thinking if there was a driving light that had a lip at the bottom maybe it would skip the boat and hit the water. I should just install bow lights and probably will but I have that light bar and want to use it!
- I am going to wetsand and buff my boat out (it isn’t that bad) and if that is good I am going to install some newer looking decals… if it dosent look good I am going to either paint it or wrap it. I have wrapped snowmobiles and a trailer before and all have experienced bad sun fading over 2-3 years. Between that and the bumpers hitting the side in the hot sun and moving the vinal on the boat I am a little scared of installing one on my boat. Has anyone had experience doing this as I see a lot of boats having great looking wraps but I am concerned about how they would look in a few years?