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  1. #1

    NEED ADVICE on which Jet Ski to buy for the Family !

    Hello all,

    I'm new to the site and need some advice in purchasing a Jet-Ski.

    I have a couple of kids ages 8 and 10 and want a Jet-Ski that my Wife and I can take the kids out on the lakes...

    The lakes here get REALLY Windy and there's always CHOP and Rollers so I'd like something BIG and STABLE with as smooth as handling as possible in these types of conditions (I have a bad back)

    Here are a few other requirements I would like to have if possible;
    - Storage
    - Tow hook for pulling tube or skier
    - Something I can fish from..
    - A decent amount of Fuel Capacity
    - A unit that I might be able to take onto a river
    - A unit with a Reliable Engine and Low Maintenance

    I'm not concerned about the price, but Also not opposed to buying a GOOD USED unit.

    All suggestions are very WELCOME!



  2. #2
    steve45's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Welcome, Joe!

    I'm not going to recommend any specific boats, but it sounds like you'll definitely need a 3-seater. In many states, 3 seats are required for towing. Yamaha has even built 4-seat models.

    Unlike many people here, you don't need the most horsepower. I would definitely stay away from any supercharged/turbocharged 'Skis of any manufacturer. 4-strokes will require oil changes, 2-strokes will require more spark plug changes. The 4-stroke engines tend to last a lot longer between overhauls than 2-strokes; but if you get water in a 2-stroke, it's a lot easier to get it cleaned out.

    I think that in your case, you'd be better off with a new or nearly new boat. You don't want to have to go through the hassle of getting the bugs worked out of a used one while the family sits at the dock.

    With your riding conditions, you WILL get wet.

    One other thing you might consider would be a Yamaha jet boat. Same engines as the Waverunners, but more seats. The smaller ones are a lot of fun, but will beat you to death in rough water.

  3. #3
    Moderator RX951's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    League City, Texas
    welcome to the forum

  4. #4
    Yeah, I've got a couple of boats already and want to stay away from those, but I've seen the smaller Jet-Boats and indeed, they are pretty cool.

    I've seen a few of them on the lakes out here but they usually aren't out for very long, or going very fast due to the issues pointed out above... I've seen them take a SERIOUS pounding even in 18" rollers.

    This is why I want something BIG with weight but won't tip over and has enough Bottom End to get you up and going quickly... I'm really not concerned with Top End but a SLED that will go 40mph would be nice. A 4 stroke would be OK with me as I can do Oil changes and the those kinds of things myself, but from what I know about outboards, there's a LOT more parts in a 4 stroke vs a 2 stroke and that can be problematic. On the other hand, the Winterization and Maintenance of a 2 stroke is higher... I'm not sure if the same is true of a Jet-Ski or not....

    So Sturdy, BIG, lot's of storage, hard to tip over with enough foot pounds to launch a skier, etc.... But not too worried about going over 40 - 45 mph. Is any of this unreasonable?

    Please feel free to suggest Sleds of any make, model or Year !

    BTW, I just saw the decked out Fishing Rig... I think it's a Yamaha SUV! heh, heh.. (funny name)... That thing is HUGE! That 'fishing MOD' is UNBELIEVABLE! I dare say, It's EXACTLY the kind of HOG that I'm looking for, however I don't think they make them anymore. Where they reliable machines?

    Cheers,... and Thanks for any additional advice !


  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by RX951 View Post
    welcome to the forum
    Hey Thanks !

    I'm Hoping to learn a bunch..... Shouldn't be too hard seeing as how I've never owned a 'SLED' !


  6. #6

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    San Diego
    I can describe what I have besides a lot of other good choices out there.
    04 Yamaha FX 140 (today I would choose the FXHO), have now over 500 hours on it, do oil changes every 30/40 hours, spend a good amount of time cleaning up after riding because of salt water use, very stable ski even with passengers, great hull in chop, GPS speed is 53/54, plenty of storage, 18 gal tank, ocean cruising will give me good 80 miles radius, My only real mechanical problem was the display went out and replaced on warranty, water got in. The MR1 engine is known to be very reliable, introduced in '02 as the first 4-stroke ski. Last year Yamaha introduced the new 1800 cc engine which is available with or without super charger.
    Good luck finding and ride safe!

  7. #7
    fx160's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    gold coast australia
    seadoo kawi and yami all have good 3 seaters without superchargers that suit your requirments
    the seadoo and kawi have the bigest storage
    the yami and kawi have the bigest fuel tanks
    all are very reliable and would easily tow a skiier


  8. #8
    steve45's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    I think the obvious thing to do is look at what is available in your local area. If you find something, post info about it and we'll give our opinions. It sounds like one of those Yamaha SUVs may be what you need, they're very hard to find.

    Do you intend to take everyone out at the same time? You might look at getting two 'Skis. Personally, I like having more than one. It can be a pain to get everyone loaded on one boat. Also, if one breaks down, you have someone that can tow you back to the dock. Two 'Skis will give you a lot of storage, too.

  9. #9
    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    near Toronto, Canada
    A PWC is different from a boat, in many ways. I suggest you spend some time riding a few different models, and sizes.

    In general, the three seat machines are very comfortable with two people on board. Three can be a squeeze, depending on the seat design and the size of the people.

    If you can arrange it, a pair of three seat machines might make the most sense. Each can tow a tube or skier since each has the required legal seating capacity. If either one has a technical problem, you have a built in tow back home using the other ski.

    And you have the flexibility of riding two up on each, or three and one.

    A double PWC trailer is still a reasonable tow load for many vehicles.

    There are three different four seater PWC models on the used market, and none are available new. The Yamaha SUV, the SeaDoo LRV, and the Polaris Genesis. The Genesis is the smallest overall, but still a fair length.

    The SeaDoo LRV and Yahmaha SUV hulls may be too wide to fit a pair on a double trailer. I believe the Polaris Genesis can fit side by side on a double trailer.

    All the four seat models used 2-stroke engines, all came stock with oil injection. The Polaris Genesis was available in both carburetor and fuel injected versions. Not sure about the Yamaha SUV or SeaDoo LRV engines

    Winterization is generally not a big problem with the 2 strokes. The cooling systems tend to be self draining, and spraying fogging oil into the engine air intake should be less hassle than changing the oil on a four stroke. Winterization details vary, but in general are straight forward.

  10. #10
    SHO-08's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    I started out with a VX110 cruiser for the family, My daughter started riding when she was 9 so right between your kids ages and I always had the remote limiter set when she rode. Its a great stable machine, 3 seater, comfortable and would be perfect for what you are looking for.

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