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Old    kx250frider617            09-21-2012, 5:08 PM Reply   
I ride in salt water 98% of the time and the two boats we use have really gone down the drain. Now these are salt series boat and we don't neglect them by any means. Im just surprised on how well we wash everything that they still rust up. I can't even count how many alternators i've gone through, gas shocks, steering cables, all that kind of stuff.

Now I'm in the market for a new(er) boat and i am by no means, RICH. I love the axis boats but all the used ones are never salt series. The nautiques/ master crafts are way to much money, people trying to pay off the boat loans. Basically, which newer boat 05-12 are the most salt resistant.

I have found that all carpet floors like malice's are a big no no. The carpet turns to crap easily. I've also noticed that the back hatch designs have a huge effect on the corrosion of the engine. Our 2001 tige is the worst, if you stand on the rear hatches after riding, all the water flows straight onto the hatch then down the creases straight onto the belt and alternator. By far the worst design. I have replaced 3 alternators in one year. I got pissed last replacement and now I spray wd-40 all over the ALT after each use.

Let's just say, I would be embarrassed to post pics of the engines condition even though I've tried my best to keep it nice.
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       09-21-2012, 5:28 PM Reply   
My old roommate lives on teh saltwater and kept his boat on a bouy most of the time. His stayed in pretty good shape although he was super anal. When you got up on the platform you had to make sure and drain/shake off almost the entire board. Dry yourself completely jsut so there is no salt water dripping down in to the engine area. I would think Axis(no carpet) or the new Moomba's with the tatani matt or whatever it is called would be good choices. Having fresh water cooling is a must. I would add a fresh water wash down tank or make one out of a 5 gallon bucket as well so that when people get up on the platform they can rinse themselves and their gear off with fresh water before getting in the boat. You can also use it to rinse down the boat inside and out. You also want to try and keep the engine bay from getting saltwater in it so make sure your prop shaft seal is lot letting any/much water come in. I would use some sort of corrosion preventative like salt away or corrosion x to spray down teh engine area every few uses. Really the more simple the boat the better I think.
Old    kx250frider617            09-21-2012, 5:37 PM Reply   
Thats exactly why I was leaning towards an axis or any budget boat. Even if I had the money, an expensive boat would be worse in my situation. I always wanted to fab up a fresh water shower, have a 10 gallon tank of fresh water under a seat, to fill up at the house before launching.

The current boat's condition is beyond the point of even caring haha.

I was also thinking of a custom seat towel that lays on top of all the seats. Its just crazy that no matter how good you wash, there will always be salt build up somewhere.
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       09-21-2012, 5:44 PM Reply   
Do you leave the boat on the water or trailer it? If you leave it in the water do you have access to a fresh water hose? Reason being is in addition to the fresh water cooling I would add a flush kit with a hose connector on teh transom. Then whether the boat is on the trailer in a slip you can plug in the hose and flush all the salt out of the boat. I think they even make a system that hooks into your colling system and there is a tank of corrosion preventative. You push a button and it flushes the corrosion preventative through the system. Anyway, the quicker you can flush the boat, rinse the interior, and rinse the engine compartment the better. Your idea of the cover would be cool. I am not sure if primal seat covers is still around but they are in California somewhere and make terrycloth covers for your seats. Maybe you could have them make one that is one piece, covers the entire sundeck and has a waterproof backing. Then you could jsut pull it off every use and wash yourself.
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       09-21-2012, 5:51 PM Reply   
Not sure if Axis or Moomba has a "saltwater" package but you should also add zincs to the transom or rudder or prop shaft or all of the above. These will become sacrificial to help keep the udnerwater gear good. Not sure what these companies make their outlet overflows/bilge overflows out of but I would rather have plastic/rubber then SS or something else. I would also prefer a rubber rubrail. Aluminum platform brackets and plastic/rubber exhaust outlets would be nice. Also, make sure and get an aluminum or galvanized trailer. Keep that rinsed most of the time to.
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       09-21-2012, 5:53 PM Reply   
Since you are on the west coast maybe look at Sangers as well. I think their newer one's use a full liner and have snap out carpet so you don't have to worry about that. Not sure if they have carpet in the storage areas or not?
Old    kx250frider617            09-21-2012, 5:54 PM Reply   
We trailer it, The boat is in Long Beach Marine Stadium about once a week, so it used pretty heavily.

I think the worst part is, i live about 3 miles from the ocean so all of the salt is still in the air and when the boat is parked, it still corrodes.
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       09-21-2012, 5:56 PM Reply   
Originally Posted by kx250frider617 View Post
We trailer it, The boat is in Long Beach Marine Stadium about once a week, so it used pretty heavily.

I think the worst part is, i live about 3 miles from the ocean so all of the salt is still in the air and when the boat is parked, it still corrodes.
That is probably tough.
Old     (cadunkle)      Join Date: Jul 2009       09-21-2012, 7:13 PM Reply   
Most of the things you mention... Alternators, control cables, etc. are no different on salt water boats vs regular boats. My understanding is salt water series are typically closed cooling and upgraded hardware (stainless, better grade, etc.) but not much else. I may be wrong, as I'm not that familiar with salt water boats, but there's not much you can do about most of the things you mention except try to keep them dry and rinse with fresh water and light oil.
Old     (Readyaimfire)      Join Date: Jun 2012       09-22-2012, 4:06 AM Reply   
Even closed cooling can be decieving. Its not completely closed. It still circulates salt water through the heat exchanger. I have a salt series xstar, aside from the "closed cooling", zinc anodes, stainless hardware, and sealed wiring its the same boat. U have to be careful not to bring any salt water back in the boat with u, this is a big key.
Old     (cadunkle)      Join Date: Jul 2009       09-24-2012, 9:40 AM Reply   
Not only the heat exchanger, but also the risers. Sometimes the manifolds are cooled with antrifreeze wfrom the closed loop, sometimes tehy are cooled with raw water from the open part of the system. Depends on how the heat exchanger setup was done. Cooling manifolds adds cost as the heat exchanger needs to be bigger, and makes it possible for raw water (salt) to get in your closed loop if the manifold to riser blockoff gasket fails. Exhaust components, especially on a salt water boat are just wear items.
Old     (srock)      Join Date: Mar 2002       09-25-2012, 7:34 AM Reply   
Some salt boats tin the wires at the connection points and I would hope everything is grounded to a zinc. If there is something to corrode, salt will find it. Its amazing.
Old     (westsidarider)      Join Date: Feb 2003       09-25-2012, 8:32 AM Reply   
Mastercraft makes a salt model (csx I believe?). Check into one of those. The way the interior is set up is much better for controlling possible water coming in the boat and getting places u don't want it to
Old     (Readyaimfire)      Join Date: Jun 2012       09-25-2012, 8:34 PM Reply   
Originally Posted by westsidarider View Post
Mastercraft makes a salt model (csx I believe?). Check into one of those. The way the interior is set up is much better for controlling possible water coming in the boat and getting places u don't want it to
I think they stopped making it, but they used that hull and a different top mold to make the x25. U could find a used one though. I think California skier is still trying to sell the old body glove csx.
Old     (hco)      Join Date: Jun 2006       09-25-2012, 9:51 PM Reply   
Boats just don't do well in saltwater, they will all fall apart and turn into a heaping ****box in a season or two. If you want to boat on saltwater, get an outboard.
Old     (wakebrdr94)      Join Date: Jul 2010       09-25-2012, 10:02 PM Reply   
I had an 02 vlx and lived in Belmont shore. Bought the bought brand new, said no salt. That lasted about two months with the stadium right there. Drive two hours or 10 mins. Anyway, we'd hit it a couple times a week after work, we used it a lot. Trailer took a dump in two years, POS Ellis trailer, so went with the extreme galvatube. After that no issues. Only issue on the boat was needed to change the steering cable as it froze and the alternator needed replace two years ago before I sold it. Flushed and washed with salt away after every use. A LOT of extra clean up, but on first inspection, you wouldn't know it saw salt that often. Depends on how much work you want to put into clean up will determine how long it lasts. I miss the stadium, but now I'm closer to fresh water, and if I don't want to wash the bait after riding, I can wait a day or two. Not with salt, clean up starts the moment you pull it out of the water
Old     (mikeski)      Join Date: Aug 2003       09-25-2012, 11:18 PM Reply   
My wakeboard boat never gets close to salt. I ski all the time on the salt water lagoon in Foster City. One of the boats is 10 years old and it is in excellent condition. The rule on this boat is dry in the boat and wet to the dock. Nothing besides a wet rope that gets wound into a catch bucket. He has even covered the stainless lifting rings, dash light, vent covers, etc. with a clear plastic wrap of sorts. The carpet is original but it does show wear as any carpet over 10 years old on a 500+ hour boat would show.

I have considered dumping the wakeboard boat in the salt but I don't want to do it with my current boat. First thing, you need to keep the bilge dry. Salt water swishing around the bilge is sure to start corrosion on all of the internal components you cannot get to with a rinse hose. If your boat did get a wet bilge I would consider filling it with a couple inches of soapy fresh water for the drive home. You can't let wet boarders climb up on the motor cover unless you seal this off completely. I would consider a snap-on sunbrella cover that covers the entire back of the boat, one where the drips go completely off the boat and back into the water.

You might also want to fill your ballast system with fresh water if possible at the launch ramp. Get rid of the built in tanks and go with sacks plumbed to fill fittings outside the boat or add some fresh water fill hoses with valves so you are not dealing with any salt water in the ballast system. Start riding with the riders that want full ballast. Pump the fresh ballast water out to a fresh water shower on the platform for a rider rinse before they get back in the boat. Rinse the gear before it goes up in a rack or in a locker. Do everything you can to keep from bringing salt into the boat.
Old     (wakemaui)      Join Date: Apr 2009       01-06-2013, 2:39 AM Reply   
Aloha from Wake Maui LLC,
I had the same problem of all my customers coming back onto the boat dripping salt water onto the engine cover which drained directly on the engine, I was trying to figure out some sort of tray I could mount to catch this water with and drain to the bilge but haven't found one yet, However, I have come up with an impromptu engine cover, I took a large plastic (rubermaid) bin and cut it in half then took zip ties and lashed the two ends together to create a cap that sits on top of my engine. It seems to really help.
I am really curious about drilling some drain holes on the back ledge that the back engine cushion/cover sits on any one drill and drain to the bilge?
Old     (jtiblier123)      Join Date: Jan 2011       03-01-2013, 7:26 AM Reply   
Salt made me move. I hate salt
Old     (azeus17)      Join Date: Feb 2010       03-01-2013, 7:55 AM Reply   
Boats just don't do well in saltwater, they will all fall apart and turn into a heaping ****box in a season or two. If you want to boat on saltwater, get an outboard.
I have to disagree. I bought a 89 ski nautique in 2007 that lived its whole life on the inner coastal. I had to replace a few items like the manifolds, circulating pump and some wiring, but otherwise, you would be hard pressed to tell the difference between that boat and a freshwater boat. Like others have said, it is all about up keep and cleaning. I have found that when most people say they are pretty anal about cleaning, there is a wide spectrum of what that really means. You saying that you stand on top of the engine cover and drip salt water all over means to me that you basically do nothing to prevent salt damage.

Better lay down some new ground rules or your new boat will be like you old ones no matter what you buy.
Old     (skiboarder)      Join Date: Oct 2006       03-01-2013, 8:19 AM Reply   
I have an SS edition VLX and ride in brackish water. I have several friends who ride in the same area and they do not have saltwater packages on their boat. You can get away with it just fine if you flush every time you go out and make sure your bilge dries fast.

The one thing you can't skip is the trailer. If you use a steel trailer, no matter how well you rinse, it will be destroyed in a year. I have an aluminum and still have to do extra maintenance. Nothing is saltwaterproof!
Old     (tx_foilhead)      Join Date: Apr 2009       03-01-2013, 12:56 PM Reply   
Try to run down the foilers in the early 90's Sport Nautique. That boat has been in the water there regularly for a long time. See what they're doing that you aren't. Early 2000's Tige isn't the easiest for upkeep, they seem to fall apart in the fresh water too from what I've seen.
Old     (Gryphon)      Join Date: Jun 2010       03-02-2013, 11:14 AM Reply   
On my 2011 Axis A20, even though I ride in 100% fresh water, I thought the "towel warmer tray" that covers the entire engine area under the sun platform was a great idea to keep any water off the engine. Not sure if most boats have this feature or not.
Old     (wakebrdr94)      Join Date: Jul 2010       03-02-2013, 6:22 PM Reply   
My first boat was a brand new 2002 vlx and I lived in Belmont shore and rode marine stadium almost always and the only issue I had was change out a steering cable. I would trailer the boat as well. It all depends how anal you are about clean up. I would flush with salt away, wash with salt away, cover the dash and wash the whole tower with salt away. Spray engine areas and tower speaker grills with wd40, pressure wash the carpet about once a month, etc. it is a lot of work but can be done. i found the salt will eat the trailer faster than ruin the boat as I had to switch to a galvatube trailer after a few years. Ran the boat for 8 years and my dealer said he was amazed how good of condition it was when I sold it, especially after being use in salt so much. You can keep it nice, just be prepared to put A LOT of time into clean up.


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