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  1. #1

    05 XLT 1200 Lost #2 Cylinder

    Hey Folks,

    I was out at the lake today and after idling for a while and warming up a bit, I went ahead ant took off. I was running probably around 45-50 MPH and all of a sudden I lost all kinds of power and speed and the engine sounded weird. I stopped and checked the engine compartment. Nothing looked out of the ordinary so I cranked up and eased over to the bank. It seemed to idle fine. I suspected I had lost one cylinder so I pulled the plug wires at idle to find out which one. #1 and #3 would about make the motor cut off when you pulled them so I guessed it's #2. Just to verify, I took the wire completely off of that cylinder and then ran the ski like that to see if it sounded and acted the same. It did. I swapped plug, no help.

    So here is the odd thing. The plug has gas on it when I pull it out, the plug wire is putting out fire (enough to shock me ), and all three cylinders have around 110 PSI compression. When I cut the motor off I can see/hear the power valve do its thing so it's moving at least.

    I'm wondering if maybe I have a coil pack gone bad or some kind of carb issue. I had been having issues with some bogging/missing getting out of the hole, (which it still does running on 2 cylinders).

    I don't know, I'm kinda at a loss. I don't think I'm going to be able to reproduce the issue out of the water either, but I'll try.

    Any ideas on where to go from here? What else can I do to troubleshoot?

    Thanks,

    Wil


  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by wil6707 View Post

    ...........and the engine sounded weird......
    What kind of sounds?

  3. #3

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    I am having the same exact issue on mine, but its the #3 cyl instead. Mine will actually fire the third cyl if you idle in the water for a while, but it like runs out of gas for that cyl shortly after. I am taking it apart tomorrow, pretty sure its a problem with that cyl's fuel pump or clogged carb. I will post what I find.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by salty View Post
    What kind of sounds?
    I just meant that I could tell there was a problem. Engine sounds very weird when running on 2 cylinders as compared to 3. That's all I meant. No "broken important engine parts" sounds or anything like that.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by LT1GMC View Post
    I am having the same exact issue on mine, but its the #3 cyl instead. Mine will actually fire the third cyl if you idle in the water for a while, but it like runs out of gas for that cyl shortly after. I am taking it apart tomorrow, pretty sure its a problem with that cyl's fuel pump or clogged carb. I will post what I find.
    Yeah it's weird on mine because it seems like as soon as you put any load at all, that cylinder doesn't work. Like I said, I took that plug wire off and tried to go and it sounded and acted exactly the same as with the plug wire on. But get this, when I got home, I tried cranking it over with only the number 2 hooked up and and it cranked and tried to run for a second. So I don't know, maybe it's like yours, has enough gas to idle but not enough to really go.

  6. #6

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    It is so very hard to diagnose these types of problems when you are not there at the boat, especially when I am not even a mechanic.... I'm just a PWC rider trying to help another rider get his boat back in the water.

    A lot of the problems associated with the 1200 and 1300 engines seem to be centered around things that usually require periodic maintenance....... things like cleaning power valves and carburetion issues. If they are not done, then we see lots of people loosing cylinders due to overheating and running lean, disconnected oil lines, rings breaking, power valves breaking or getting stuck open or closed. My point is that your carbs or a PV's do not do their job, and the end game is generally that someone looses a cylinder, and as a worse case scenario, broken parts from a broken cylinder or power valve start to get into the crank distroying it as well.

    It is hard to give a definitive answer on this sudden rash of people having problems with "a" cylinder because the symptoms seem to be very closely associated with each other. You really do not know "what caused what" or even what happened first until you tear into it. Even the best mechanics do not like to comment on these issues because they are so hard to diagnose.

    If it were my problem though, I would approach this as if I were just doing preventative maintenance for the beginning of the season. I would:

    1. Clean each of my power valves and inspect for any cracks. The early model 1200's really had weak power valves, and through the years, all of them fatigue (hence the waveeaters). Whoes to say that one of the power valves were broken between the guiotine blade and shaft. The blade should have fallen into the cylinder where then the piston and cylinder should have been distroyed. However there was so much gunk associated with the blade that it became stuck in the closed position. Instead of a partially distroyed engine, the owner gets a poor running boat simply because the valve was stuck. Then again, maybe your wave eater clip did its job.

    2. Check/replace my catalytic converter. If you have already done this, then great.

    3. Pull my carbs and either have some one go through them, or do it myself. Look for any fuel restrictions in the fuel lines etc.

    There is a lot of work involved here, I know. It all has from time to time to get done. If you do the things that need to get done, in all likely hood, your problem will go away.... provided the damage to the cylinders and pistons has not already happened.

    Excuse my ranting, it is just that I really want to help, but I can't. All I can say is what I would do.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by salty View Post
    It is so very hard to diagnose these types of problems when you are not there at the boat, especially when I am not even a mechanic.... I'm just a PWC rider trying to help another rider get his boat back in the water.

    A lot of the problems associated with the 1200 and 1300 engines seem to be centered around things that usually require periodic maintenance....... things like cleaning power valves and carburetion issues. If they are not done, then we see lots of people loosing cylinders due to overheating and running lean, disconnected oil lines, rings breaking, power valves breaking or getting stuck open or closed. My point is that your carbs or a PV's do not do their job, and the end game is generally that someone looses a cylinder, and as a worse case scenario, broken parts from a broken cylinder or power valve start to get into the crank distroying it as well.

    It is hard to give a definitive answer on this sudden rash of people having problems with "a" cylinder because the symptoms seem to be very closely associated with each other. You really do not know "what caused what" or even what happened first until you tear into it. Even the best mechanics do not like to comment on these issues because they are so hard to diagnose.

    If it were my problem though, I would approach this as if I were just doing preventative maintenance for the beginning of the season. I would:

    1. Clean each of my power valves and inspect for any cracks. The early model 1200's really had weak power valves, and through the years, all of them fatigue (hence the waveeaters). Whoes to say that one of the power valves were broken between the guiotine blade and shaft. The blade should have fallen into the cylinder where then the piston and cylinder should have been distroyed. However there was so much gunk associated with the blade that it became stuck in the closed position. Instead of a partially distroyed engine, the owner gets a poor running boat simply because the valve was stuck. Then again, maybe your wave eater clip did its job.

    2. Check/replace my catalytic converter. If you have already done this, then great.

    3. Pull my carbs and either have some one go through them, or do it myself. Look for any fuel restrictions in the fuel lines etc.

    There is a lot of work involved here, I know. It all has from time to time to get done. If you do the things that need to get done, in all likely hood, your problem will go away.... provided the damage to the cylinders and pistons has not already happened.

    Excuse my ranting, it is just that I really want to help, but I can't. All I can say is what I would do.
    First of all, thank you very much for the reply and advice. I understand it's tough to diagnose an issue from the other side of a computer screen reading a post. Shoot, I couldn't diagnose it standing over it with it running in the water. I'm just reaching out to try and gather info. You're right about these issues. There are just too many things that can cause them.

    I like your approach to this problem. The ski now has about 145 hours or so on it (which sounds low to me). I bought it wih 128 (Which sounded low to me ha ha). I was really hoping I would be able to ride it a little longer before I had to start working on it, but it is what it is I guess. With that said, I might as well just go through it and check things over.

    The first thing I plan on doing is checking the spark with a spark gap tester as mentioned in the service manual. If that passes, I'll probably pull the exhaust and start checking power valves, cat-converter, etc. I have also ordered 3 carb kits from the performance parts store, so if I don't find anything obvious, I'll clean/rebuild those, since they probbaly need a good cleaning anyway.

    One thing that is very odd to me in all of this is how it ran so strong and just instantly quit on that cylinder like that. Frustrating....

    Anyway, I'll keep posting and keep you all up to date. Maybe we'll all learn something.

    Wil

  8. #8

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    That is exactly what my buddies boat did, and I mentioned that a couple of posts up.

    I found the problem with his boat today: The #3 cyl carb strainer was completely clogged with crystaline and also gummy materials. The carb itself looked perfect, but there was a few globules of gum in the fuel line, and the gritty stuff around and in the strainer. This boat has always been stored with Stabil, has 120 hrs on it, but he is not as picky about where he buys his fuel as I am. Anybody else seen this, or know what the cause is?

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by LT1GMC View Post
    That is exactly what my buddies boat did, and I mentioned that a couple of posts up.

    I found the problem with his boat today: The #3 cyl carb strainer was completely clogged with crystaline and also gummy materials. The carb itself looked perfect, but there was a few globules of gum in the fuel line, and the gritty stuff around and in the strainer. This boat has always been stored with Stabil, has 120 hrs on it, but he is not as picky about where he buys his fuel as I am. Anybody else seen this, or know what the cause is?
    Thanks for the update! Hope that's all that is wrong with my cylinder. I started taking things apart today and found some interesting stuff.

    1. It looks like the #1 cylinder was replaced at some point. That certainly changes the history of a 128 hour ski a bit don't ya think? Sheesh.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    2.The cat is coming apart. That one didn't really surprise me. too much. (D-Plate is on the way) Anyone know if I need to replace the exhaust gaskets? I'm assuming yes, but figured I'd ask.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    As you can see in the top pic, I pulled the PV cover off of #2. Not sure what I need to be looking for though. It looks like it is still attached to the pivot.

    Sigh......On the bright side, I'm learning a lot about PWCs.

  10. #10
    Oh, and the spark gap test passed with flying colors. Spec was 10mm, I got it to jump up to about 20, so that's good and bad I guess. Good that I have good spark, bad that I haven't found the root cause yet.

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