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Old     (surfdad)      Join Date: Sep 2004       05-13-2008, 8:53 PM Reply   
2003 Tige 23V - lots of hours, we ride a BUNCH - around 900 hours to date.

Engine overheated after about 7 minutes. I turned the engine off :-) immediately. Back at the dock tried to start it - 15 minutes later and it wouldn't turn over. It looks like it's thrown a rod. The engine is a Merc Black Scorpion 340 HP.

Merc makes a decent engine, and there was plenty of oil and I've maintained the boat. 900 hours to a thrown rod seems pretty light - unless wakesurfing as often as we do has something to do with it.

Price tag if I want a decent warranty is going to be close to 15,000 installed. Maybe 11,000 for a long block but then manifolds, etc are 5 years old.

Opinions, please: freak situation? Merc's are crap or is wakesurfing an issue on engine longevity?

(Message edited by surfdad on May 13, 2008)
Old     (gwnkids)      Join Date: Nov 2003       05-13-2008, 9:30 PM Reply   
Old     (hatepain)      Join Date: Aug 2006       05-13-2008, 9:30 PM Reply   
Man what crappy timing right at the start of summer.
Old     (clubmyke)      Join Date: Aug 2004       05-13-2008, 9:59 PM Reply   

i am really sorry to hear that..

the only engine question i have with wakesurfing is the list of the boat in regards to the oil pickup.
Old     (rallyart)      Join Date: Nov 2006       05-13-2008, 10:16 PM Reply   
Jeff, it might be the wakesurfing because the boat is always at a list and oiling becomes more of a problem for two reasons.
One is that at a significant list the pickup might be close to the oil surface and pick up a bit more air.
Two is that the oil might be stacked up high on the other side and getting frothed by the crankshaft which introduces more air.
Either of those could affect bearing life. A good engine builder should evaluate the bearings and the rod failure.
Another possibility is that there was a flaw in the rod, bearing, or bolt that finally let go.
It's worth doing a post mortum on the engine.
In my opinion the list on it's own is not very significant but if it is aerating the oil that could have long term wear problems.
Old     (surfdad)      Join Date: Sep 2004       05-14-2008, 3:44 AM Reply   
Bryan - it could be the impellor was the culprit for the overheating. But when I got it home, I loosened the serpetine belt so that the impellor pulley wasn't touching, nor the alternator and the engine wouldn't turn.'s not a stuck impellor that's preventing the engine from turning over.

I wonder if you guys are right about the oil pickup.
Old     (mhetheridge)      Join Date: Aug 2006       05-14-2008, 3:53 AM Reply   
Sorry to hear about your boat Jeff. Ughhhh!
Old     (batmobil)      Join Date: May 2008       05-14-2008, 4:56 AM Reply   
How did you get your boat back to the dock? Did you tow it with another boat? If so, it is possible that the motor has hydrolock.
Old     (surfdad)      Join Date: Sep 2004       05-14-2008, 5:18 AM Reply   
It was towed. Pulled the plugs and no sign of water and it won't turn over even with the plugs out...either by starter or by "hand/breaker bar" on the crankshaft.

(Message edited by surfdad on May 14, 2008)
Old     (clubmyke)      Join Date: Aug 2004       05-14-2008, 5:52 AM Reply   

thats seems pretty pricey for a motor... is that the norm ?
Old     (trdon)      Join Date: Sep 2007       05-14-2008, 6:42 AM Reply   
I take it you are not confident in an instgall yourself? You should be able to take it out, tear it down, machine the block buy new rods and pistons (maybe a crank), have the heads reworked and throw it back in for under 4k. Going back to stock specs shouldnt be too expensive.
Old     (batmobil)      Join Date: May 2008       05-14-2008, 7:26 AM Reply   
Is it possible that the starter could be engaged and stopped working and therefore preventing motor from turning. If you threw a rod, wouldn't the motor stop on its own. You mentioned that you turned it off
Old     (rhawn)      Join Date: Dec 2006       05-14-2008, 7:31 AM Reply   
That really sucks dude, sorry to hear. 15k sounds over the top expensive. Hopefully its something else binding the engine and not a rod.
Old     (surfdad)      Join Date: Sep 2004       05-14-2008, 7:46 AM Reply   
The scenario, as best described to me, is that most likely the engine was hydrolocked or still is because I can't get it turned over to see if there is any water trapped in there. Visual inspection and a probe inserted through the spark plug holes don't produce any evidence of water.

I attempted to start it as we were drifting away from the dock after being towed in and it wouldn't turn over...the experts tell me that the starter motor has enough torgue to bend the rod.

With the plugs out and a breaker bar on the crank, it won't turn over.

The price that I've been quoted on the "6.2L 340HP Black Scorpion" is 13,800. My Buddy Dennis said that he found one online for 8-something. 5K difference is nothing to sneeze at. The folks at Trivalley Marine in Livermore are telling me that they don't believe that I've done internal damage like that and want to take a look - so I may drag the boat down there to let them have a look see.
Old     (surfdad)      Join Date: Sep 2004       05-14-2008, 7:47 AM Reply   
Also...thanks everyone for the condolences! :-)
Old     (enzostyle)      Join Date: Aug 2006       05-14-2008, 8:11 AM Reply   
Jeff, Mercury offers a rebuilt black scorpion rated at 400hp for 15k. I would go that route befor paying that for rebuilding yours.

I just priced one out 2 days ago for a customer and merc had several in stock.
Old     (surfdad)      Join Date: Sep 2004       05-14-2008, 8:17 AM Reply   
Hey Jason, thanks 'bro - I was probably unclear. The 13,800 was for a fresh engine ready to drop in, not rebuilding. They are crazy expensive.
Old     (enzostyle)      Join Date: Aug 2006       05-14-2008, 8:18 AM Reply   
I found the part number here it is

383 Stroker Scorpion Inboard- Eng only 865108R60

Personally I would rebuild it my self.

Good luck!

I wouldn't get too worked up till you get it cracked open and get a true diagnosis. Hope this doesn't affect your summer travels, looking forward to seeing you folks again.

I have the Enzo sac installed this year and the wakes are better than ever.

(Message edited by enzostyle on May 14, 2008)
Old    lakeside5_10            05-14-2008, 9:04 AM Reply   
i think a short block may just be all you need with the heads checked, you wont know unless you take it apart yourself , is the merc. block different then a standard gm block you can get at a gm dealer. i would think that the oil pan and pump pickup, water pump , cam , heads and intake & manifolds would be special to merc.
Old     (bac)      Join Date: Feb 2008       05-14-2008, 9:09 AM Reply   
You are correct, a starter motor does have the power to bend a rod. You should be able to tell if you a bent rod just by pulling the valve covers, but not always. I would definitely tear into before just deciding to replace it. My buddy and I were talking about this the other day. Wondering about the extra stress on the motor since its constantly bogged down. Keep us posted Ill definitely be interested to see what the culprit is. If it turns out to be that your oil is being whipped by the crank (windage, you can put in a windage tray in to help eliminate the air in the oil.
Old     (tonyv420)      Join Date: Jul 2007       05-14-2008, 10:48 AM Reply   
Sorry to hear that Jeff, quite a bummer. Good luck on the diagnosis.
Old     (t_mann)      Join Date: Mar 2008       05-14-2008, 12:21 PM Reply   
Hi Jeff There are a number of things that this could be. E-mail me or call me. I sent you my number in a e-mail a while ago. I will talk with my service manager about it.
Old     (surfdad)      Join Date: Sep 2004       05-14-2008, 12:22 PM Reply   
Thanks Troy for taking the time. I'll look your number up.
Old     (h20k9)      Join Date: Aug 2007       05-14-2008, 1:43 PM Reply   
dang jeff,sorry bout the boat.if not the impeller,the fact that it overheated first tells me it spun a bearing and then guys pulled the plugs and still cant turn the crankshaft,thats a bad sign.i would put a remanufactured motor in her and prolly try and sell her.after that i would make me an offer on my 07' 24 enzo,we have $95,000 in this boat..200 hours,i would sell her to you for 62,000..just a thought
Old     (lionel)      Join Date: Nov 2005       05-14-2008, 2:33 PM Reply   
Jeff, sorry to hear about this. I would agree with waterdog, please do us a favor and pull the impeller, inspect it and give us a report back.


Old     (surfdad)      Join Date: Sep 2004       05-14-2008, 3:55 PM Reply   
Thanks guys. I've had issues with the impellor on this engine for ages - I'm lucky to get 6 months out of one. I can't remember who told me, just recently, there is a shim kit that is supposed to align the belt and gets rid of this issue. I had no idea there was such an animal.

Typically in the past when I lunch the impellor it sticks the pulley and the result is a SQUEAL like a pig on fire. :-) Plus the belt smokes like a chimney. (I do love a good metaphor - I'll also be squealing like a pig on fire if I have to write a $10,000 check!) There was NOTHING like that. The engine was purring along. When it smelled hot I cut the throttle and it idled perfectly fine. Popped the engine cover and there wasn't any smoke, just the smell of "hot".

I cleared up one issue on the cost of a replacement - the new drop in engine that is 13,800 includes everything - computer, wiring harness - etc. I don't need that.

Again the "experts" are telling me that hydrolock, while not "common" from towing, it does happen. And several folks have confirmed that attempting to start an engine that is hydrolocked can bend a rod. That would all just be operator error - I would guess after being towed it's best to pull all your plugs and run the engine over a couple of times.

I'll get the engine popped open and let folks know what we find out.
Old     (lionel)      Join Date: Nov 2005       05-31-2008, 8:55 AM Reply   
Old     (surfdad)      Join Date: Sep 2004       05-31-2008, 10:12 AM Reply   
Cracked block, two stuck cylinders, miscellaneous lower end problems and an unhappy owner. :-)

The raw water intake was blocked with a plastic bag or plastic material. The history of this boat is interesting. It was a "photo boat" used by Tige for thier '03 brochure. It had less than 50 hours on it when we bought it. It had low oil pressure readings on the dash guage but the Tige dealership tested it and said it was just the sender unit. They ordered a replacement but lost their Tige frachise somewhere in between, I just never followed up on the sender unit replacement.

At one point while towing through an intersection an errant driver ran a stop sign and t-boned the trailer. Ever since, the replacement trailer doesn't quite fit the boat. It seems that one of the bunks was making contact with the brass intake fitting and it appears may have created "something" on/in the fitting that caused the plastic to hang or get sucked in.

The engine is a Merc Black Scorpion 340 HP motor. We've always had issues with the the impellor. I could only get about 6 months life out of it. I've learned that there is a shim kit that fixes this issue and the ex-Tige dealership charged me for this fix, but it was never done.

On Mother's day we launched the boat, idled while waiting for Judy to park the tow vehicle. Then idled out past the 5 zone markers and ran it at about 25 mph for no more than 3 minutes before smeeling the heat. No smoke, no alarms and I looked at the temperature guage as I shut the engine down and I remember it as being below 220 degrees - the max on my guage. When I cut the throttle, the engine was idling fine.

I've talked with some of the folks that manufacture engines and they indicate that the list angle isn't an issue as we were running it - the benchmark was that if you were sliding off the boat, you're probably pushing it, but less than that isn't a risk.

There was a concern over cylinder washing - the condition where the boat is run for significant periods in an overly rich condition (slow and weighted), but the fix is to run it up on the rpm's frequently. We always did that to and from our surf spot.

Anyway...long story short is that it has something to do with the water starvation, I'm sure, but it seems like some of it is just "freakishly bizzare" circumstance and some of it was poor service from the ex-Tige dealership.

Edit: I'm 52, I can't remember everything the first time! :-)

(Message edited by surfdad on May 31, 2008)
Old     (timmyb)      Join Date: Apr 2007       05-31-2008, 11:43 AM Reply   
Are you just having the engine rebuilt then or doing a replacement one?
Old     (chpthril)      Join Date: Oct 2007       05-31-2008, 11:54 AM Reply   
Well, I hate to hear of anyone having engine trouble, but glad you have isolated the cause.....and it was not surf related.

On a side note, over heating an engine is about the worst thing that can happen to one. The heads warp, cylinders walls gauld and become out-of-round, etc.
Old     (surfdad)      Join Date: Sep 2004       05-31-2008, 12:53 PM Reply   
Hey Timmy, the Insurance Company has indicated it's an insurable loss, so as soon as they figure out how much they'll cover then I can determine an appropriate course of action. I have to fix it, there just isn't any resale value in it's current condition.

Thanks chpthril, yeah it seems that the overheat caused some wild damage - I also did try and start it at the dock and that did in fact bend one rod...well I guessing that's when it happened as the boat "seemed" to be running fine when I shut it down. I learned THAT lesson :-)
Old     (rhawn)      Join Date: Dec 2006       05-31-2008, 8:04 PM Reply   
Thats pretty good news, at least they are planning on covering something!
Old     (redsupralaunch)      Join Date: Aug 2002       06-02-2008, 6:06 AM Reply   
Jeff ask the insurance company how green they are today and offer mitigation by accepting CATS on the rebuild for all those greenhouse gases that big insurance company produces on the boilers and chillers at their HQ. Tell them to stand up and be responsible

BTW that great news.
Old     (rallyart)      Join Date: Nov 2006       06-02-2008, 9:58 AM Reply   
Jeff, when they looked at your engine they would have looked at the bearings and the rod bearings would have shown if you had an oil problem. So it's good to know that was not the issue.

The overheating alarms and gauges may not work if they are in air instead of water as they don't pick up the heat as quickly. I've seen car engines go back to normal on the gauge when all the water had left the block after a hose failure.
The heat soak would also take a little while to affect all the engine so the damage could get worse even after you turned off the engine.
I would have tried to restart it too so don't hit yourself for that.

As a side note, one of the advantages of a closed cooling system is that the engine heats up with coolant in it, even if there is an impeller failure. They are a little harder to damage like this. My old I/O had it but my current one doesn't.


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