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  1. #1

    Why yes, as a matter of fact I have lost my mind...

    Hi. Just wanted to introduce myself and my project. You can call me Sugaree. I have recently, like yesterday, come into possession of an '88 Waverunner 500. The boyfriend and I were looking for a project for this winter after having recently finished up (almost) a sailboat. I've always wanted a PWC and found this one cheap so here I am. I've actually never had one and hear that this is a fun little starter model. I figure I'll fix it up and play with it for a season or two and then either give it to my goddaughter or resell it.

    It's actually in pretty good shape for its age. The guy I bought it from says it won't do more than 10mph though. Each cylinder is getting 140 so I'm pretty sure the problem isn't there. I'm thinking I'll start by replacing the spark plugs, cleaning the carb and then move onto the exhaust system. I understand that those are some of the main problems with this particular watercraft.

    I hope to have pictures of it's progress soon. My mom borrowed my camera and left it in her pocket when she washed clothes so I'm going to have to borrow hers for awhile for this project.

    I'm sure I will have many questions along the way. I hope you all don't get sick of me .

  2. #2
    Moderator beerdart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Welcome to the Hulk.

  3. #3
    Three hours and two trips to the licensing office later I am now the legal owner!

    I was a bit worried about this process. The guy who sold me the ski had bought it at an auction and never registered it himself because he couldn't get it fixed. The last registration decal from Alabama was from 1995. Normally all that's required to register a boat is a bill of sale and the most current available registration certificate from the previous owner. Here's where the fun part started. I go off to the license commissioner's office with the HIN and the registration number off the side. Just to be safe I snapped a photo of the '95 registration sticker with my cell phone.

    When I get to there I explain what I'm trying to do and get the "good news, bad news" speech. The good news is that they can register it for me, the bad news is that because of my last name I'll have to reregister for 2011 next month. I can deal with that, I just want to make sure that there aren't going to be any problems before I start working on it. The clerk starts to enter information and things just aren't clicking. First, the registration number on the side does not have the correct suffix to be a PWC in AL. Then, he questioned the HIN number because even though it was 12 digits it started with YAM instead of YAMA. So he sends me back home to double-check the numbers.

    I get home and sure enough I had the right numbers. I take pictures and head back down. The original clerk was at lunch so I explained to his replacement what was going on. She too runs the registration numbers, the HIN, and the validation decal number from '95. Then she looks at the pictures I took and determined that I had the right numbers written down. She then calls the state marine police who have no record of any of the numbers either. Finally, she determines that it must have gone out of state and registers it as a transfer from another state. It just means I have to change the side number to one that matches Alabama's prototype. But I have my stickers and can get it out on the water this weekend to start diagnosing issues!!

  4. #4
    Nothing like getting air, while sitting in a chair VonnerNIX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    That's great to hear! One step at a time, even though the first step was more like a leap to get the tags.

    Best of luck!

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