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Old     (davomaddo)      Join Date: Feb 2003       08-30-2008, 10:46 PM Reply   
Out of the best inboard wakeboard boats, who does the best job making a boat built to stand up to saltwater?

I can't find very much info about this on Natique or Malibu's websites. Mastercraft has a Salt Water Series, but they only have about 1 paragraph explaining how the salt water series is different.

I beleive you can order a Malibu with an Indmar engine that is built for Salt Water, but I haven't been able to tell if Malibu does anything else to make the boat Salt Water ready.

Natique has no info about Salt Water on their site.

Any feed back would be appreciated.
If I wasn't into wakeboarding so much, I would get an outboard.
Old     (lavinder)      Join Date: Mar 2008 Location: Gig Harbor, WA       08-31-2008, 11:47 AM Reply   
Engines are not made for saltwater. Cooling systems can be added to minimize the salt water into the engine. Below are the three systems from worst to best for salt water application
Flush system - hook up a hose and flush your engine after use - salt water comes in contact with engine and exhaust.
Fresh Water Cooled - Engine is cooled with radiator, exhaust is still raw water cooled.
Closed Cooling System - Entire engine and exhaust is cooled via radiator.

I will never have my boat in salt, but I do see people doing it.
Old     (brit_rider)      Join Date: May 2004       08-31-2008, 2:52 PM Reply   
Dave, boats will always do better in fresh water but they can be run in salt fine. Please don't let people scare you off too much as it's not that big of a deal.

From my direct experience, Nautique boats stand up very well to salt (Last boat was a new Super Air Nautique). Especially if fitted with their closed cooling system and fresh water flush kit. The whole engine runs in its own closed system which is cooled via a small heat exchanger. You can then flush the heat exchanger and exhaust manifolds out via hooking a hose up to a neat little plug on the transom.

In reality, there is not that much difference between a salt water series boat and a normal one apart from cooling and a few anodes (which are barely required unless you leave the boat in salt.

In my experience (salt water boater for 22 years) the biggest concern is the trailer - you gotta look after them by keeping on top of cleaning them and keeping upto date on maintenance as they won't last anything like as long as the boat, or a trailer that is used in freshwater. ensure you buy a galvanised trailer, not painted.

Bottom line is, ensure you wash the boat after each dip in salt, flush the engine and clean the trailer... It'll be fine.

I have yet to find a sports boat with closed cooling... they just run em in salt and don't care. My current boat (a Maxum sportsboat) runs in salt 100% and has no closed cooling.. just gets flushed and is fine.

Hope that helps
Old     (brit_rider)      Join Date: May 2004       08-31-2008, 3:00 PM Reply   
Just to correct what Gig Harbor Supra said...

There are several types of cooling/flushing available.

Raw water cooled - This is the standard system fitted to boats, the block and exhaust is cooled by water sucked up by a water pump from the ocean/lake. This can be flushed via external flushing device like a fake-a-lake (inboard applications) or pair of muffs (outboard or I/O).

Fresh water flush - This is a system, like a flushpro, which allows the user to plug a hose directly into the cooling system and flush the engine and exhaust through.. basically a tidier way of flushing the above engine configuration

Closed cooling - This is the system I described in the above post. This can be taken on a further step by cooling the exhaust manifolds also, but few choose to go this far, not even sure if any inboards are available with this from the factory - anyone know? I've not seen it as of yet... Either way, the heat exchangers still going to have salt hitting it and will want replacing dependant on use/level of care.

Also, bare in mind that a heater core (the element in a heater - should you have one fitted.) if run in salt, will only last about 2 years. If you have closed cooling it'll be hooked up to this so won't be a concern and will last for years and years.
Old     (dubsac)      Join Date: Mar 2006       08-31-2008, 7:36 PM Reply   
I have a owned a saltwater series Mastercraft X45 with the closed cooling system for 2 years. My boat is used 100% in salt water. You will be fine as long as you take good care of your boat. Buy some CRC Heavy Duty Corrosion Inhibitor and spray it on the engine frequently. Salt will probably cause some issues no matter what you do. I just installed my third alternator and belt tensioner.

I worried about this stuff before I bought my boat, and also thought about buying an outboard or I/O. I am soooo glad I did not make that mistake. If all you do is wakeboard/skate/surf get a real wake boat.
Old     (1boarder_kevin)      Join Date: Mar 2007       08-31-2008, 10:07 PM Reply   
MC's saltwater boat does cool the exhaust manifolds.
Old     (lavinder)      Join Date: Mar 2008 Location: Gig Harbor, WA       09-01-2008, 12:20 AM Reply   
Not sure what I said needed correcting. Closed includes exhaust. FWC is only the block. FWF is raw water cooled with the device to flush your system. It's not rocket science.
Old     (jaybee)      Join Date: Aug 2007       09-01-2008, 7:17 AM Reply   
Brit - Thank you for putting my mind at ease. After getting a chance to go out in the bay this past weekend i am seriously considering buying a galvanized trailer and start going out in the bay(salt water). It was so awesome to be out on a boat with not only a change of scenery, but so may more places to ride.

I might as well seeing as i got ripped off from the local dealer adding the flush kit (They charged me $500 and then the guy at mastercraft(yes i have been pondering a switch) told me they charge their customers $150 - $200 and thats all i should have paid) and that was over a year ago and still have not put it in salt.
Old     (davomaddo)      Join Date: Feb 2003       09-01-2008, 9:23 AM Reply   
Thanks for all the info.
I understand all the different closed cooling options. I acutally already have a Malibu with the FWC and ride on salt 100%. I have had good luck so far.
I was looking at buying a new boat and was wonering if anyone knew more about the "Salt Water Series" boats that are being marketed. Both Malibu and Mastercraft market a Salt Water Upgrade.
It is my understanding that Malibu is just an engine upgrade to a closed cooled engine, where Mastercraft upgrades to closed cooled engine plus hydrolic steering, composite motor mounts and more.
I know nothing about Natique's options with respect to Salt Water.
So, from the limited info I have found it looks like Mastercraft does the most to build a boat that will stand up to Salt Water.
I understand that there is no majic bullet, and regardless I will still need to do my normal salt water maintainance.
The details are not easy to find.
Does anyone have more info??
Old     (duckguy)      Join Date: Jul 2006       09-01-2008, 10:01 AM Reply
Old     (tampawake)      Join Date: Mar 2008       09-01-2008, 10:17 AM Reply   
I could be wrong but Tige's marine power engines are salt water engines. Maybe a Tige guy can step in here and let us know.
Old     (dreevs)      Join Date: Jul 2002       09-02-2008, 7:10 AM Reply   
I asked similar questions and ran into similar results. Most if the wake manufacturers all have a Salt Series boat - but they do not have any page set up that really goes through the tech specs of why the boat earns the "salt series" name. Mastercrafts was the most comprehensive, but when you boil the page down, its nothing more than pictures of their salt series boats. It really leaves you at the mercy of their sales reps who will tell you what you want to hear in order to sell the boat (no offense guys - its your job, I get it).
I asked the questions here - like you did, because I like to get some advance info before I deal with sales reps. I like to make the decision on my own. Some of the guys stepped up with some good things to look for - if I can find the thread I will post the link here.
I am taking all of the tips given to me and headed to the boat show in Tampa this weekend. I am looking at the MC X35ss and the Nautique 230ss
Old     (dreevs)      Join Date: Jul 2002       09-02-2008, 7:11 AM Reply
Old     (davomaddo)      Join Date: Feb 2003       09-02-2008, 4:07 PM Reply   
Thanks Ted,
I read your thread and even posted something on it. You are right, there isn't much info.
Here is what I have found - basically looking at Malibu, MasterCraft and Natique -
Indmar makes a good Salt Water engine, with a completely closed cooled system. You can by a MC or Malibu with this Engine/system.

Malibu will add a sea strainer and a flush kit, in addition to the Salt Water Indmar engine. I am not sure if they do anything else.

MasterCraft adds the strainer, flush kit, plus it sounds like they do more like composite motor mounts, zinc annoids, hydrolic steering, self bailing cockpit and more. However, I have heard that the "self bailing cockpit" is not really what you think it would be for many models.

The Natique rep (owner of the Natique dealership in Seattle) throught they might have a fully closed cooled engine, but he wasn't sure. He is going to get back to me on it. They typically just put a heat exchanger on their boats, flush kit, and strainer - but nothing else to make it "salt water" ready.

From what I have found, it sounds like Mastercraft is the leader with respect to making ski boats more fit for salt water use.

If anyone wants to correct me on this or add something, go ahead.

I am no expert.
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       09-02-2008, 4:29 PM Reply   
My roommate is Bret V down at Bakes and he has his VLX setup for salt. He does have a huge Zinc that is on the back of the boat. Not sure if Bakes did it or the factory but it looks like the factory installed it.

I use to sell Mastercraft's and believe they do the best job of making a wake boat saltwater ready.
Old     (eyekahn)      Join Date: Aug 2007       09-03-2008, 7:51 AM Reply   
Mastercraft will do it best. Only with the crusader engine. That engine is a saltwater beast! Crusader is a well known saltwater engine. And is on alot of inboard fishing boats.
Old     (eyekahn)      Join Date: Aug 2007       09-03-2008, 7:56 AM Reply   
Also, my dad has a tiara with two of the same 6.0l crusader that mastercraft uses with over 800 hours of strictly salt and has been sitting in the water for many years. He has had little to no problems with them. I will definitly be looking into an x-star equipped with this engine for a salt application. My buddy has the monsoon set up for salt and it still has problems almost every time he puts it in salt. Fresh water cooling, ss exhaust manifolds, and zinc. The salt kills every other piece on this engine including alternator/raw water pump/ and the cooling system always overheats.

(Message edited by eyekahn on September 03, 2008)
Old     (woreout)      Join Date: Aug 2006       09-03-2008, 9:30 AM Reply   
Anodes arent any good unless properly grounded.
MC is the only MFG that makes a true SS boat. Thats why they advertise it and others dont.
Old     (monkey)      Join Date: Oct 2002       09-03-2008, 11:27 AM Reply   
I've seen alot of threads about salt water on here, but I almost never see anyone mention dripless packing. Am I missing something? Is there a reason people don't mention it? It seems kind of important to keep the salt water out of the hull.
Old     (davomaddo)      Join Date: Feb 2003       09-03-2008, 11:54 AM Reply   
Yes, the dripless packing is a good idea in Salt Water. I know it is an option and I beleive it might come with the Salt Water Series. If not, it would be a smart thing to get.
Old     (davomaddo)      Join Date: Feb 2003       09-03-2008, 1:55 PM Reply   
I got this from the Mastercraft Rep:
Here is some more standard features on the SS package:

Nickel platform bracket
Flush Kit
Hydraulic Steering
Raw Water Strainer
Stainless Fasteners
Sealed Waterproof Connectors
Zinc Anodes
Marelon thru hull fittings
Old     (1boarder_kevin)      Join Date: Mar 2007       09-04-2008, 4:34 PM Reply   
my ss x2 came with all of that and

dripless packing
grounded sacrificial annode
closed cooling, including muffler jacket that cools catalictic converter
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       09-04-2008, 4:59 PM Reply   
There it is. They win the award for doing it far better than anybody else.
Old     (meathead65)      Join Date: Sep 2006       09-04-2008, 5:39 PM Reply   
Gig Harbor Supra:

Your terminology is off. Fresh Water Cooling is a generic term, and actually incorrect. If you run the boat in salt, you can't have Fresh Water Cooling, there is no source of fresh water. What you can have is Closed Cooling. Closed Cooling systems are available a couple ways, a "block only" sometimes referred to as a "half system"; or a full system that also cools the manifolds and risers with coolant. Both systems use an anti-freeze mixture and a heat exchanger, which is similar to a radiator.

The only way to cool your engine with fresh water is to run in fresh water.

(Message edited by meathead65 on September 04, 2008)
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       09-05-2008, 8:55 AM Reply   
Meathead, you are wrong.

Q: What is fresh water cooling?
A: It is the marine version of the cooling system that you have in your car.
Most marine engines start out as a non-marine engine and were designed to have a clean non-corrosive antifreeze coolant circulating between the engine and a "radiator". In the marine version of this cooling system (fresh water cooling), the radiator is replaced with a "liquid to liquid" heat exchanger. Sea water, instead of air, passes through the heat exchanger and absorbs the heat from the engine coolant and is then discharged overboard.

Many marine engines, for cost reasons, utilize the initially less expensive, but in the long run much more expensive, raw water cooling system. In this case polluted corrosive sea water, pumped directly into the engine, eats at the very base of a marine engine causing irreparable damage.

Q: Are there different types of fresh water cooling?
A: There are two basic systems.
Block and manifold, full system.

In these systems not only the engine block, but the exhaust manifolds as well, are included in the antifreeze system. The exhaust elbows, where the raw water enters the exhaust system, always remain on the raw water side. Full systems may not be possible on all engines due to lack of proper water connections on the exhaust manifolds and a lack of raw water pump capacity. This is often a problem with sterndrive engines. These problems can sometimes be solved but will get expensive. Typically, full systems are more expensive in terms of hardware and, especially, installation.

Block only, half system.

In "block only" systems, the most expensive part of the system, the engine block itself is on the antifreeze system. Exhaust manifolds remain on the raw water side. Half systems are less expensive to buy and much easier to install. When replacement exhaust manifolds are available at a reasonable cost, this half system is often the most cost effective. Carefully make an overall cost comparison between full and half systems before making a decision.

Sounds to me like closed cooling is just a general term for some kind of FWC.
Old     (meathead65)      Join Date: Sep 2006       09-05-2008, 10:05 AM Reply   
Do you see anything in your cut and paste job about the engine being cooled by fresh water? Closed Cooling is just that, a closed system that uses an anti-freeze mixture to cool.

Just because it's on the internet, it isn't always correct.

However, most Boat Builders even use the term, so it leads to a lot of people being confused and mis-informed.

I've been involved with the Marine Powerplant industry for 20 years....there is no Fresh Water in a Fresh Water Cooled engine.

It's just a pet peeve some of us leads to confusion on the consumers part. Unfortunately, it has become kind of the universal term for a closed system.

Oh, and Indmar and Marine Power do it best. Mercruiser and PCM are behind the curve. Crusader is really good, but not a player in the towboat market.

Cat. converters are going to make full closed systems really hard to do right...expect a "learning curve" of problems and failures as the motor companies figure it out.
Old     (juniorhawk)      Join Date: Jul 2004       09-05-2008, 10:12 AM Reply   
Correct Craft boats hold up to salt water use better than Master Craft, despite not wearing any real "saltwater" branding yet. With closed cooling and careful use, plus the hardware on the Nautiques, you're better off going that way. I say that despite my love affair with the Master Craft CSX series.
Old     (wake1823)      Join Date: Dec 2005       09-05-2008, 10:21 AM Reply   
My biggest issue when running in saltwater was the seaspray...if your riding around in an inboard, it can be bad. It's nearly impossible to clean that out of the "luxury" inboard boats these days
Old     (juniorhawk)      Join Date: Jul 2004       09-05-2008, 10:33 AM Reply   
Sam you're exactly right. In many ways, tournament/world class inboard wake boats don't make a sh*t ton of sense for saltwater use. I've heard of people describing some brands (not Correct Craft, nor Malibu, nor Master Craft) as expendable, essentially degrading, disposable items when used exclusively in salt water. Shockingly, I do hear that. I don't run mine in salt, ever. But I do have the itch for something that can do everything instead of my lake-only boat.

After spending 2 weeks in Maine, and seeing what those lobsterboats displace, I want one of these.

Old     (juniorhawk)      Join Date: Jul 2004       09-05-2008, 10:35 AM Reply   
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       09-05-2008, 10:37 AM Reply   
ok, interesting. I thought it was just a term that really made no sense.

Meathead, do you work for an OEM company or some sort of service center?
Old     (meathead65)      Join Date: Sep 2006       09-05-2008, 10:43 AM Reply   
OEM that also owns several retail stores.

Not wake specific, but we do inboards pretty well.

Corp GM for a big shot watersports chain for 5 years before this.
Old     (1boarder_kevin)      Join Date: Mar 2007       09-05-2008, 11:37 AM Reply   

Mastercraft is currently doing a cat in their saltwater boat. They have had an issue with all cat exhaust boats due to adding a temp sensor that diverted cooling water away from the rubber hose and melted some.

Do you think long term failures or do you think indmar has got most of this behind them now.
Old     (meathead65)      Join Date: Sep 2006       09-05-2008, 11:47 AM Reply   
Cats are new to everyone for I would expect some initial issues. Remember, cats run very hot in order to do their job, and putting them in a closed engine compartment has a whole new set of challenges associated with it.

My biggest fear is going to be the ability of the typical service dept. to do much with these...just modern EFI and ECM systems seem to stump most of the service guys. The Mastercraft issue is a great example...California mandated cats in all inboards for 09, and there was not enough time for the motor companies to really refine the systems. Unfortunately, consumers are going to be doing the initial field testing whether they like it or not.

Our industry is so far behind in service it is really embarrasing to me.

I, personally, would not buy the first generation of ANY new technology/system, and I feel that Cat. Converters fall into that catagory. I only hope the motor manufacturers can prove me wrong, or their is gonna be a whole slew of pissed of inboard owners out there.
Old     (davomaddo)      Join Date: Feb 2003       09-05-2008, 2:17 PM Reply   

So, you are saying - there may be issues with the fully closed systems for engines with the Cat Converters. Do you think the ones without the Cat Converters are tested and good to go?? I don't live in CA.

Following is from Indmar's website regardig the Malibu Salt Water engine. The Mastercraft section says pretty much the same:

Experienced saltwater boaters will be the first to appreciate the extensive list of saltwater-specific details found in the Malibu SS series. All marinized parts are E-coated, an advanced electro-coat dip process that provides optimum protection against corrosion. Unlike paints or powder coating, E-coating completely covers both external and internal surfaces, creating a permanent-paint-to-metal bond. Will not peel. Will not crack. Corrosion will not put a dent in it.

SS Cooling systems are totally closed and corrosion free. Saltwater never enters an SS engine system. It uses only propylene-glycol/water coolant driven by a high-flow pump. Coolant tanks are easily accessible for filling and maintenance and are equipped with sacrificial anodes for extended life.
Old     (meathead65)      Join Date: Sep 2006       09-05-2008, 2:32 PM Reply   
Non-Cat closed cooling has been around forever...there should be no issues there. I am betting closed cooled Cat. motors will have some bugs to work out.
Old     (davomaddo)      Join Date: Feb 2003       09-05-2008, 3:03 PM Reply   
Natique rep called me back.
He said Natique told him that they were coming out with a Salt Water upgrade come Jan. 1. The Rep was pretty low key about it.

He didn't want to say too much about it until he actually saw the boat.
Old     (dreevs)      Join Date: Jul 2002       09-08-2008, 7:00 AM Reply   
Dave - the Nautique Rep at the show this weekend said the same thing. They will brand their boat with a salt series name sometime early next year. It appears that they already have most of the upgrades as standard issue on their "normal" boats.
I went to the show to check out the Nautique 230 and the MC X35. Both are impressive boats and I want to try them both in the water. I honestly think the X35 would hold up better in a salt environment due to the higher freeboard and deeper V. I have ridden the X45 in roughish seas and found it able to handle smoother than my old VLX would have. I would only assume that the X35 would be smoother due the deeper V than the X45. (My needs are different than others based on the fact I plan to use my boat for more than just wakeboarding)
The N 230 and MC X35 have similar upgrades - only MC has taken the ballsy step of branding it a salt series boat. I do think the label should look more like this though: $alt $erie$.
Old     (woreout)      Join Date: Aug 2006       09-08-2008, 2:51 PM Reply   
Erik your right about the Nautiques, plastic doesnt rust which is what most of their interior is.
Old     (dreevs)      Join Date: Jul 2002       09-08-2008, 3:04 PM Reply   
More Carbon Fiber!!
Old     (davomaddo)      Join Date: Feb 2003       09-10-2008, 8:47 AM Reply   
Following is from my Malibu Dealer, regarding what comes with their 2009 Salt Water Package.

Engine Salt Water Features
1) Stainless steel or spectrumate coated fasteners.

2) Engine, transmission mounts & flanges, thermostat housing, alternator brackets, exhaust manifolds & risers are all e-coated.

3) Full freshwater cooling system including exhaust manifolds.

Boat Salt Water Features
1) (2) Sacrificial Anodes (zincs), one mounted on the transom in between the exhaust ports and then grounded to engine. The other is installed on the prop shaft half way between the strut and the bottom of the boat.

2) Flush Kit w/hose attachment

3) Drip less Shaft Seal
Old     (dreevs)      Join Date: Jul 2002       09-10-2008, 12:17 PM Reply   
Are they building a salt boat line, creating a salt package option available from the factory, or is it a unit price option for each of those items (like they have it now...)?
Old     (davomaddo)      Join Date: Feb 2003       09-10-2008, 1:21 PM Reply   
It is an upgrade. I am not sure exactly how it is now, but the quote I received had a few different line items.
Following are the line items relating to the Salt Water stuff:
- Full Salt Water Engine Package
- Water Cooled Shaft Seal
- Sea Strainer and Install
- Flush Kit with Transom Install.

The upgrades are not cheap.
Old     (mikeporter2000)      Join Date: Oct 2005       09-10-2008, 1:24 PM Reply   
Dave - tell them they need a self-draining cockpit done right and snap-out carpet like the X-35.

(Message edited by mikeporter2000 on September 10, 2008)
Old     (mcsammamish)      Join Date: Jun 2002       09-10-2008, 1:56 PM Reply   
Dave, here is more updated info that you should have. Malibu has upgraded their Salt Water pkg this year.

First...FYI Malibu and Indmar have offered their Salt Water package since 2007 and in this year the CAT exhaust was offered on the Monsoon 340HP. We did sell some boats this year with the Salt Water Package on them and with the Monsoon with CAT exhaust. There were bugs and we (Bake's Marine) as well as Performance Marine in BC worked with Indmar over the year to work the bugs out that were mostly do to the CAT temp sensors. Currently we have had had great success with the Salt Water Package on the Malibu's, this winter they FINALLY got it dialed in and have had no customer's with problems all summer. If I remember right we've done 3 this year and they are all problem free since the last update of re-routing some cooling hoses directly off of the thermostat to the manifolds. Bret V has one on his boat, you should hit him up to go out sometime soon before he pulls the boat out Horsehead Bay and brings it back to Sammamish. We also have some awesome technicians that work here and when you come to pick up your boat (which is at the lake right now being water tested by one of our awesome techs) you should talk with Paul and maybe Steve our lead tech and they can walk you through it in full detail. It is an awesome option.

Here's the updated list to add to the one above that Bret gave you. (some may be redundant)

1. "Engine - Fresh water cooled to include the manifolds and block with e-coated components and stainless hardware on exposed fastners"

2. "Underwater components including Power Wedge equipped with sacraficial anodes for corrosion protection" *this is improved for '09*

3. "Swimstep brackets and associated hardware are stainless steel" *this is new for '09*

4. "Gauge panel and glove box lid are stainless" *this is new for '09*

5. "Pylon cap and pylon swivel head assembly are stainless" *this is new for '09*

6. "Steering brackets, connections assemblies and associated hardware are stainless" *this is new for '09*

7. Seat slide and associated hardware are stainless. *this is new for '09*

PolarBill, There it is. They win the award for doing it far better than anybody else. You have HUGE Malibu envy

Dave, hit us up when you come back in to pick up the boat. Hope all is well on Fox Island, I miss it there a lot. Too bad you moved there with the boat right after my grandparents sold their place. Talk to you soon.
Old     (mcsammamish)      Join Date: Jun 2002       09-10-2008, 2:13 PM Reply   
One other tid bit of info I forgot to mention. When Indmar introduced this is 2007 Chuck Rowe of Indmar engines said a big difference between the Indmar and any other fully closed cooling system on an inboard boat was that Indmar would not restrict RPM's for the SW pkg compared to their normal engines. Other manufacture (I believe he was referring the MC's Crusader option) had their engine RPM's restricted to 4200 or 4300 RPM's. This almost 2 years ago that he said this at our annual dealer meeting and thigs could be different now but something to ask about if you're shopping; what's the rev limiter/max RPM's the engine will do.
Old     (polarbill)      Join Date: Jun 2003       09-10-2008, 2:22 PM Reply   
Too late to ride Bret's boat at Hoarsehead. He is bringing it back to the house tonight. It is going to be good to get Gentlemen's Choice II back on Sammamish. I love that boat.

(Message edited by polarbill on September 10, 2008)
Old     (davomaddo)      Join Date: Feb 2003       09-10-2008, 2:25 PM Reply   
Thanks for the extra info Matt.
You guys do good work up there.
Paul always hooks me up with good advice.

I was trying to relay the info I got from Brett and Paul on this website for the guys who might not have good dealers close by. As you porbably know, the Malibu website and sales brochure doesn't explain any of this stuff.

I didn't know about the additional updates for 2009. That is good info.

See Mike's comment above - or forward it to the product design guys at Malibu.
Mike has a good point. Keeping the engine compartment dry would really help with corrosion.
Old     (mcsammamish)      Join Date: Jun 2002       09-10-2008, 4:54 PM Reply   
With regards to self draining cockpit, it aint gonna happen. Malibu is dead set on using the Mantech (spelling may be incorrect) or Mantex composite floor. It's gives much better strength to weight ratio as well as dampens the noise down considerably compared to a fiberglass floor. Malibu still knows how to build a boat that can be adrenaline rush to drive as well as be comfortable and quiet even in a v-drive. The way the floor works with the build of the boat it would be very hard to make a self bailing cockpit work. I love the fully carpeted interiors, they're soft and comfy when you're spending all your time in an area where you're mostly only wearing board shorts and bikinis. It just requires dragging the garden hose inside the boat to clean once a year. You probably have better water condtions there and hopefully wouldn't take any water over the bow but it does happen. Maybe just keeping things in the engine compartment and bilge coated with the CRC protectant all the thime would help. Having wet people getting in and out of the boat and standing over the engines on the sunpad is a bid thing too. Bret V and his brother started making sure they wipe off 100% of the time before anyone climbs back in the boat has made a big difference too. This all of course is IMO.
Old     (dreevs)      Join Date: Jul 2002       09-11-2008, 7:02 AM Reply   
It seems like a small issue when we are talking about it here, but permanent carpet installed in a boat that is used in salt is just a bad idea. IMO permanent carpet in any watersport boat in any type of water is not the greatest idea. I would think a snap in attachment carpet really needs to be an option for Malibu. I LOVED my Malibu. LOVED it like Luke Loved the General Lee, but man I hated cleaning the carpet in that thing. Not everyone has a garage that they can let carpet air dry in. Most of us are stuck washing the carpet and covering the boat due to no garage or time constraints because we have to get back to work in order to afford said boat! This just leaves the permanent carpet steaming under the cover and it actually begins to cause electrical issues in addition to stink and mold. The frogs love it though.
It just doesnt seem like a hard option to add - snap in carpet? Everyone has it. Then the consumer can make the choice.
Old     (zorro)      Join Date: Jan 2005       09-15-2008, 11:30 PM Reply   
I am just going to buy a 2002 Mastercraft Xstar that has been used in fresh water only. I am going to use it in salt water as I did with my Prostar 190. Unfortunately the Xstar does not have fresh water cooling so I am going to install at least the flushpro valve. Does anyone know if it is possible to add the fresh water cooling to the engine? Which would be the cost?
Am I going to have trouble with the Zeroflex tower due to salt water environment, such as heavy pitting or something like that?
Old     (dreevs)      Join Date: Jul 2002       09-16-2008, 6:44 AM Reply   
Ive seen threads on here that address your question. From what I remember it wasn't very cost effective to add fresh water cooling to an existing set up. I think you would be fine with a more meticulous maintenance routine and the flush kit you are adding. Salt Away is a great product! I could be wrong on the cost effectiveness of adding fresh water cooling - let us know what you come up with.
Old     (davomaddo)      Join Date: Feb 2003       09-16-2008, 10:43 AM Reply   
I recommend adding:
- raw water strainer (if you have any seaweed where you ride_
- flush pro
- heat exchanger

The heat exchanger can easily (easy for a boat mechanic) be added onto the engine. It might cost around $1,500. This is commonly called a "half closed system". Salt water will run through a heat exchanger which will cool antifreeze. The antifreeze will go through the engine to cool it.

I am not a mechanic, so I may not be using all the correct terms.

The salt water will still run through the exhaust manifolds, but your main engine will be salt free. The exhaust manifolds can be replaced every 3-5 years at a relatively low cost.

Most guys who run in salt water use the above system. Newer Indmar Salt Water (and some other)engines include a fully closed system, where the salt water doesn't go through the manifolds.

A good mechanic should be able to explain to you what I just told you in better detail.
Old     (zorro)      Join Date: Jan 2005       09-16-2008, 12:09 PM Reply   
Hello Dave,
No need of a mechanic, you explained yourself perfectly. What you mentioned is just the system I have on my Prostar that I am going to sell on this Saturday and also on my Malibu. On both boats I have also installed the Flush Pro valve.
What I needed was an idea of the cost and you just gave me an idea (I do not know how much could become in Euros once the kit is imported to Europe, but what is sure is that Euro is now pretty strong versus US dollar and that helps us European a lot).
Thanks again


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