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Thread: Sunk Ski

  1. #1
    johnsonmtz's Avatar
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    Sunk Ski

    *** Disclaimer... This want not one of my skis***
    Yesterday we while trailering the boat I see this kid standing in the water at the ramp holding his Kawasaki 1100 STX. Dad finally showed up, loaded the ski in the trailer, then pulled out to let the water drain. By the time they had done this, the ski had sunk to the point that the water was up to the seat seal

    The dad looked dazed and I couldn't leave without offering help. He later told me his only option would have been to wait until Tuesday when the local shop opened. :S

    The e-box was completely submerged. I pulled the plugs and there was water completely filling each cylinder. The guy didn't have the first clue what to do.

    So, we ground the plugs and I just bump the stater. Columns of water shot about 20 feet in the air. We kept doing this in 1/2 second long bumps until the big spurts of water stop. We were able to then rung the starter in about 10-15 second bursts with water continually spraying out.

    We finally got it to the point that there was only a mist coming out. I checked each plug wire and it was getting spar k so I put the MAG plug in and tried to start. I never could get it to fire because water was covering the plug electrode each time I removed it.

    At this point there wasn't anything more I could do at the ramp. I told him to go straight to Wal-mart and buy a can of fogging oil. I told him to connect a strong battery, remove the air box cover, and spin the motor in the same 10-15 second bursts like we had just done. As he did that, I instructed him to spray the fogging into each carb throat and just keep doing that until the can was empty. I told him at minimum that would coat the crank and bearings in oil and prevent the engine from getting trashed.

    I almost told the guy just bring it to my house and I'd get it running. But, I didn't know him from Adam and I really didn't want to be held liable if I couldn't get it going. I figured at least I had helped him prevent completely ruining the engine and that once he got a fresh set of plugs it could get fire and be able to start.

    Oh, the reason for the sinking? One of the drain plugs was missing. I'm not sure how or why, but the starboard plug was in and the port plug was nowhere to be found. All I know was dad had a look of total disgust, so I doubt son will ever be allowed to take the ski on his own again!

    KJ


  2. #2
    AquaGuy's Avatar
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    That was great of you for helping him out. I always double even triple check to make sure my drain plugs are in before backing down the boat ramp.

  3. #3
    stubburnjdh's Avatar
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    I bet a lot of shops hear "the water was only in the motor for a couple days". The average person does not realize the damage water can do to any engine! It would have bugged you for days if you turned the other way

  4. #4
    WFO 4 LIFE nitrosportman's Avatar
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    i did the same thing yesterday water was about 2 inches below the carb throats i started it up after putting the bilge plug in and let the bilge pump, pump all the water out thank god it ran fine all day no problems when i opened up the seat i realized why i had forgot the drain plug i was on my cell phone taking an important call there was my cell phone laying in the bottom of the water laden hull i had set it down on the F/A unplugged the battery maintainer and closed it up forgetting all about the bilge plug

    moral of the story don't be on the damn phone when prepping to go to the lake

  5. #5
    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitrosportman View Post
    ... there was my cell phone laying in the bottom of the water laden hull.

    i had set it down on the F/A unplugged the battery maintainer and closed it up forgetting all about the bilge plug

    moral of the story don't be on the damn phone when prepping to go to the lake
    That is a new one for me!

    Cell phone left inside the hull...

  6. #6
    I'm feeling naturally aspirated today pirate33's Avatar
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    Its not just a novice thing but a pro can do it too. At every off shore race I have been at, I always find at least one pilot that has left a drain plug out

  7. #7
    Similar story yesterday. Some guy was being dragged in by another ski. His was an older Kawasaki (looks like a first gen snowmobile). He was sunk up to his a$$ on this ski. Apparently the second rider had a hard time getting on the back of the ski and kept submerging the rear. Eventually the ski filled with water and that was all she wrote. I know I'm going to hell in a hand basket cause I was laughing throughout the explanation. This girl was above-above-above average trying to board the ski via the rear. Either way, hell bound or not, I helped him drag it ashore and we cleared the water out.
    Please pray for me Greenhulk patrons!

  8. #8
    johnsonmtz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stubburnjdh View Post
    I bet a lot of shops hear "the water was only in the motor for a couple days". The average person does not realize the damage water can do to any engine! It would have bugged you for days if you turned the other way
    I've heard stories of guys dumping small outboards off the back of their jon boats and not taking it to the shop until a few days later when they got time. Like we all know, immediate removal of the water is the key to any chance of bringing the engine back to life!

    Yeah, I couldn't just pull away. Just from the looks of how low the hull was in the water I knew it had gotten above the carb throats. The dad was just standing there and I could tell from his face he didn't know what to do.

    As I was cranking to get water out the kid walked up and said "aren't you suppose to let it dry out before you try and start it?". He was amazed when I explained what you happen to the steel internals if the water was left in there.

    The kid also asked "how to do you know so much about all this stuff?". I explained my bad experience with the local shop and my decision after that to just purchase a manual, read places like the 'hulk, and just dive in and fix it myself. That local shop is the same place they were (or are) going to take the ski tomorrow.

    I really hope he got that fogging oil in there, a new set of plugs, and gets it fired up. If he had been someone I knew personally (or through an acquaintance) I would have just told him bring it to the house. But, being a total stranger there are just too many unknowns. At bare minimum, if he got the internals oil coated, he should at least only need some electrical work instead of a complete engine replacement.

    KJ

  9. #9
    WFO 4 LIFE nitrosportman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by K447 View Post
    That is a new one for me!

    Cell phone left inside the hull...
    yeah i was in a hurry and the call came in just as i was unplugging the maintainer set it down i felt like a total idiot but believe it or not i let the phone sit out in the texas sun all day (battery removed of course) and it still works i was in amazement

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