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  1. #1
    TopCop931's Avatar
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    Unhappy Trouble on the high seas!

    Well.....After having a good ride for about 45 minutes I noticed that I lost my MPH on my MFD and then realized I was taking on water. Lucky for me I was close to shore.

    Anyway, I get in and see that the sleeve has come loose from the hull adapter on my drive shaft and it is spinning with the clamps chewing up my reverse cable. Water already getting as high as my battery. I get her out quickly and tighten the clamps back down and put her back in on the trailer to make sure I stopped it. Seems okay.

    The drive shaft bearing seems okay also. The question is why did it come loose and is that much water supposed to flow through that sleeve? I made sure those clamps were tight my last time out. Not this time though.

    I flushed the engine and fogged it. It seems to be running okay. It was idling a little rough at first when the water was in the hull but I don't think I have any water in the case.

    Here are some pics. If there is anything you guys suggest I do let me know because I don't know much about this drive system.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2

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    has the engine or pump housing been off !!! and not been alighned !!!! or clamp not tight !!

  3. #3
    TopCop931's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by justfun View Post
    has the engine or pump housing been off !!! and not been alighned !!!! or clamp not tight !!
    The impeller and shaft were done prior to my getting a hold of it. It never ran after that guy that did that work until I got it up and running. It has been out on several runs with no problems. I think the clamp came loose because the second clamp that should be in front was too far forward. The two clamps on the hull adapter should be up against each other right? Notice how that clamp almost in the center between the bearing and the hull adapter in the picture? It has always been that way. I don't think it should have been.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I am assuming he had the pump out when he changed the shaft, seals, wear ring and impeller. If it were out of alignment I would have had trouble long ago you would think. The drive shaft bearing would be toast wouldn't it?

    Here is what it looks like after I fixed it. The Clymer Manual illustration leads me to believe this is the way it should have been in the first place.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    If it is not right someone please let me know. There is a repair shop down here with some old-timers running it but I don't want to get ripped on something that I may have resolved myself. Not to mention they may not have parts for this anyway. If water is supposed to come through there, thus the purpose for the sleeve, and I didn't damage any seals then I just need to change the reverse cable but it is operational right now.

  4. #4
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    The big hose connects the thru-hull fitting to the driveshaft seal carrier. On my SLT750, I too have 3 hose clamps, 1 clamping on the carrier, 2 clamping on the hull-tube. The two clamping to the hull are right next to each other though. Your pic looks like your center clamp is not on anything there in the middle. They should be right next to each other, both clamping down on the white tube sticking out of the hull. There is just barely enough length of that tube to get both clamps on it.

    But yeah... if that hose slid off, it will let a lot of water in. That tube/hole the driveshaft goes through leads to the jetpump and that whole water pump intake area is under pressure when moving.

    As for MFD... did your mph start working? I had mine stop working. Next time I started it up, it was working again. Weird. Also, the pitot fin is right under the driveshaft area we're talking about. Make sure the clear hose connecting there and going to the MFD didn't come off.


  5. #5
    TopCop931's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ripcuda View Post
    The big hose connects the thru-hull fitting to the driveshaft seal carrier. On my SLT750, I too have 3 hose clamps, 1 clamping on the carrier, 2 clamping on the hull-tube. The two clamping to the hull are right next to each other though. Your pic looks like your center clamp is not on anything there in the middle. They should be right next to each other, both clamping down on the white tube sticking out of the hull. There is just barely enough length of that tube to get both clamps on it.

    But yeah... if that hose slid off, it will let a lot of water in. That tube/hole the driveshaft goes through leads to the jetpump and that whole water pump intake area is under pressure when moving.

    As for MFD... did your mph start working? I had mine stop working. Next time I started it up, it was working again. Weird. Also, the pitot fin is right under the driveshaft area we're talking about. Make sure the clear hose connecting there and going to the MFD didn't come off.

    That is was I thought Rip. Thanks. If you go back and check my pics from May when I first got the thing you will notice that the second hull clamp was already in the middle not attached properly. I overlooked it and this is what I got. Spanked! I have it on right now. I greased the bearing again as you can see and like I said there was water about just to the top of my battery when I got it out. I am going to need a new reverse cable even though the spinning clamps just shredded the outer cover of the cable. I got lucky and caught it on the way in.

    As far as the MPH on the MFD, I did have the same experience that once I shut it off and turned it back on the MPH came back but then it went down again once I started taking on water. The clear hose is connected and not damaged. The spinning hose clamps must have missed it.

    I guess I better disconnect the battery and make sure all the connections are clean and dry huh? I probably should check the electrical box also. Even though the water wasn't in there long it still was in there. I was going to check my impeller clearance also but I forgot my feeler gauges at home. I may just go buy some more. "Justfun" has got me thinking about alignment now but I don't have any excessive vibration. I didn't do the work on that pump though either.

  6. #6
    TopCop931's Avatar
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    Anybody know what the pump rate is on the bilge in these things? I am trying to find information on it and can't find the answer just the model number. Mine was working yesterday but it didn't seem to be pumping out the water fast enough. It is all cleaned and the hoses are free of obstruction so I think it may be time for a new one.

  7. #7
    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TopCop931 View Post
    Anybody know what the pump rate is on the bilge in these things? I am trying to find information on it and can't find the answer just the model number. Mine was working yesterday but it didn't seem to be pumping out the water fast enough. It is all cleaned and the hoses are free of obstruction so I think it may be time for a new one.
    The Rule pumps are usually either 500 GPH (Gallons Per Hour) or 360.

    The 500 GPH Rule RM500A bilge pump seems to be a popular upgrade. The electrical draw is within the capacity of the 3 Amp fuse, but I would suggest up-sizing to a 4 or 5 Amp bilge fuse. You will still have protection from electrical fires, but less likely to blow a borderline 3 Amp fuse.

    If you go to the 750 GPH RM750A then you will need a 5 Amp fuse. This is a physically larger pump, so you will need to work out the mounting.

    Keep in mind that the GPH rating is under optimal conditions, often with NO hose or water lift, just pumping straight out the pump exit, with optimal battery voltage.

    In real life, the actual flow capacity from any bilge pump will be less. Bilge pumps can decrease flow capacity significantly with even minor restrictions to flow (hose diameter and length, elbows and exit fittings), and the amount of water lift (how much higher the water exit is than the water intake).

    The reason you want Rule brand bilge pumps is that in the Polaris system, the bilge pump runs continuously whenever the engine is running (at least, it should be). Rule bilge pumps are rated to run continuously while 'dry', without burning out.

    The jet pump tunnel is pressurized when the hull is moving. A breach of the through-hull seal is going to allow a lot of water flow into the hull. No bilge pump can keep up with a major breach.

    From this thread It sunk! I was in the water within 10 seconds... this video shows what can happen when the through-hull utterly fails;


    Watch the first minute or so, then jump ahead to about to 10:30 mark.

    The drive shaft through-hull seal that failed in that video is an aftermarket product called the Rad4. It is actually similar in design to the Polaris through-hull, but the Polaris seal seems better made

    What happened was the through-hull seal had corroded internally. The seal bearing eventually bound up and became stuck onto the spinning drive shaft. The engine torque then spun the seal assembly and ripped the rubber section apart, creating a breach to the sea.

    Note that after the hull stopped moving forward, the water still flooded the hull rapidly. No bilge pump would have been able to keep up. The rider did not know there was a problem until the engine began to breath water in as the hull flooded.

    Properly installed, I am often amazed how much abuse and poor maintenance the stock Polaris through-hull seal will put up with. If you don't grease them, eventually it will fail, of course.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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  8. #8
    TopCop931's Avatar
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    Okay Keith let me make sure I am understanding this. No water should pass by that seal? It should be dry under the sleeve at all times? Because if that is the case then I still may have a problem. I think what happened to me was that the clamps were not installed properly on the sleeve and it came loose. It was clear that the clamps were not correct from when whoever changed all the seals, shaft, impeller, etc. didn't put the clamps back on properly. Shame on me because I didn't fix it.

    Would that sleeve coming loose have ruined the through-hull seal or did a blown seal cause the clamps to come loose? I did not pull the pump out to check it because I am on vacation. I used tools in the back of my truck to adjust and tighten the clamps back down on the sleeve and put it back in the water and it seemed to be okay. I didn't notice anymore water coming in.

    I didn't get it in the water today because of rain and my wife wanting to do other things.

    I am going to check this video out now. Just please let me know if the through-hull seal may have been damaged before I drop it back in tomorrow if you can. I thought water was supposed to pass under that sleeve to cool the bearing and shaft. Isn't that why you are supposed to grease it after ever ride?

    BTW: I know what you mean about the Rule bilge. I do have the RM500A. I pulled it out this morning to make sure all was okay and sure enough there was an old screw that probably came off an old battery post stuck under it. It must have rolled out from under the foam in the back of the hull because I cleaned the thing out with a shop vac before leaving home.

  9. #9
    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
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    There should be zero water leaking into the hull, from anywhere.

    The through-hull assembly should be watertight. The rear seal in the bearing is supposed to keep water out of the bearing housing. The front seal is there to keep the grease inside. The waterproof marine grease is there to keep everything lubricated, and act as a secondary barrier to water getting into the hull past the front seal.

    The seals are cooled simply from the in the pump tunnel water keeping the wet portion of the drive shaft cool, and heat gets conducted away from the front portion of the drive shaft where the seals ride.

    If it were me, I would pull that jet pump off, pull out the drive shaft, then remove the through-hull assembly, including that rubber section.

    Then inspect everything. Make sure the hull isn't cracked or leaking in that area.

    If you don't have the tools for that, find a small mirror + flashlight and do some looking around under there, with the hull in the water (on the trailer in the water is more stable). Your wife may have a small make-up mirror. If she loans it to you, offer to buy a new one

  10. #10
    TopCop931's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by K447 View Post
    There should be zero water leaking into the hull, from anywhere.

    The through-hull assembly should be watertight. The rear seal in the bearing is supposed to keep water out of the bearing housing. The front seal is there to keep the grease inside. The waterproof marine grease is there to keep everything lubricated, and act as a secondary barrier to water getting into the hull past the front seal.

    The seals are cooled simply from the in the pump tunnel water keeping the wet portion of the drive shaft cool, and heat gets conducted away from the front portion of the drive shaft where the seals ride.

    If it were me, I would pull that jet pump off, pull out the drive shaft, then remove the through-hull assembly, including that rubber section.

    Then inspect everything. Make sure the hull isn't cracked or leaking in that area.

    If you don't have the tools for that, find a small mirror + flashlight and do some looking around under there, with the hull in the water (on the trailer in the water is more stable). Your wife may have a small make-up mirror. If she loans it to you, offer to buy a new one
    I do have one of those little mirrors with a magnetic handle with me in my tool box. I did not see any hull damage but I couldn't get the sleeve forward enough to look at the seal. When the sleeve came loose water only came in while the ski was running in the water. If I turned it off it seemed to stop. Then after tightening down the sleeve and putting it back in there was no water getting in there. But from what I am understanding from you it should always be dry under that sleeve so the sleeve must have been just temporarily holding back the water.

    To prove the theory, I guess if I rode it the water pressure would build up and the sleeve would come loose again. It may not be wise to try and prove that theory.

    I am on someone else's property right now so I am not going to try and pull the pump here. There is a local shop down here. I will take a ride down to them and see how much cash they want to fix it. That's if they even have the parts for a Polaris down here.

    What pisses me off is that all of the seals are supposed to be new back there and it only has 8 hours on it since it was "supposedly" rebuilt. I did find a box in the storage compartment with all the old parts in it when I got it. The old seals were in there. Even the bearing was replaced.

    Anyway, Thanks for the clarification.

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