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  1. #1

    97 SPX800 hull filled up partially with water due to broken clamp, help!

    Hello, I just recently bought a 97 SPX800 that had had a boot replaced on the 'shaft' that the water shoots through. I put it in the water today and started it up (that was a fiasco in and of itself - it kept making the chugging sound and then would fire up for about .5 seconds and then stop. It took about 15 tries of that before the ski finally started and started moving, but then it seemed fine). I went for around....2 minutes, max, and everything seemed good and then suddenly the ski started limping. I took it back to the loading bay, by the time I got back it started limping even worse, maybe 8-10mph, and it started to look/feel like it was sinking. I hopped off, beached it near the loading bay and looked under the seat and the hull was filled 1/3 with water - probably 1/2 way up the battery or slightly above that, but not high enough to hit the engine cylinders or carbs. Anyway, I immediately put it back on the trailer and let it drain out and after it was empty started the ski to make sure it fired up ok - it started immediately and I gave it a couple revs and then turned it off - I'll do a compression check later.

    I have a picture of a clamp that broke, see below:



    The boot the clamp goes around was just replaced before I bought the ski because it was leaking somewhat (maybe 1" of water in the hull every 10-15 minutes according to previous owner). My question is, is this "put together" right? Notice the zip tie on the larger section of the boot - is that normal? Was it just really bad luck with a faulty clamp and all I need to do is put a new clamp on? Just seems rather easy to fail but maybe it was just bad luck. I noticed when the ski is actually in the water, that whole assembly rotates which I assume is how it pushes water through, so I'm trying to wrap my mind around how that rotates with the clamp around the boot around the shaft.

    Anyway, is there a good chance anything else on the ski was damaged? The water came up to almost the top of the big white round flat piece on the left side of the picture. Steam was coming out when I pulled the seat off, of course - the battery wasn't fully submerged and the ski started up out of the water with no issues. I'm still curious why it wouldn't start in the water - would that clamp being broken when I put it in the water make it hard to start the ski? It was like every time it tried to turn over it would just go 'clunk' and then stop, then I would push the starter button again (made sure to choke/prime some) and it would act like it was going to start and then clunk and stop. Eventually it started but less than 2 minutes after that is when it started limping.

    The guy I bought the ski from is contacting his mechanic to figure out about getting the work redone/checked, but I figured someone on here would know better about what I could do either myself, or sanity check this guy's install to make sure the boot/clamp is actually on right.

    Ok, second question ( related though), I have 2 skis and when I went to put the second ski back on the trailer at the end of the day, I had to back the trailer into the water with the seadoo on it (the plug was back in though), and after ~5 minutes in the water just sitting there not started or anything, it filled up ~2" with water. Would the water be leaking in through that same broken clamp or is it now possible I have another part broken on the ski? I ran it at the lake last weekend for 10 min or so and had no issues at that time. Thanks so much in advance!


  2. #2
    20 feet Boy's Avatar
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ID:	245045The 2 ski might be leaking from the sponson or the vts. When on the trailer fill the hull with some water with the plug inn. See if you can see where it leaking. The clamp in the photo is pretty hard to clamp with out the special wrench but can be done. And the zip tie is so-post to have a clamp like the other one But water will not come out of this area. It will be leaking to the back more around where the hose clamp is or at the carbone ring. There are 2 seals that are on both side of the ring seal carrier. the guy might of forgot to put one inn. The part #293300032 and are $300 each. I would check the soufflet boot for a rip too. It sound like it was trying seize like my old ski. When the bearing on mine old ski lock up on to the drive shaft. But yours is a carbone ring so this shouldn't be a issue. Unless the carbone ring has a chip out of it or a crack or the boot issue.

  3. #3
    I believe he must have put one in - the 'boot' he replaced was a $400 job but it was only ~1 hour of labor, so I'm guessing the part was the $300 part.

    As far as leaking around the hose clamp, you're talking about the clamp in my picture right? Is it possible it would leak there even without the engine running? That's what scares me most, I'm not sure if water could come in that fast or not. Wherever the water is coming in has to be a big leak, because it fills up really really fast now. It could be the VTS area, but I did briefly glance at that while I was letting the water drain out of the hull and while a few drips were coming from the sealant there, definitely not enough to constitute a large leak. I also had the ski in the water (though not running) last weekend for 4-5 hours and had 0 leaks - seems fishy that this clamp breaks and then the hull floods being somehow VTS related. I will do a water test with the trailer angled up tomorrow, just to be safe. I also ran the ski last weekend in the water for 10 minutes or so and no leaks during that time either, so the 'shaft/boot' wasn't leaking then, at all. It was definitely something that happened while I was starting/running the ski today that caused the leak as far as I can tell. I'm confused about the two separate events (not being able to start the ski or rather it feels like it was going to start then dies - also when this was happening you could hear a sound like a fan was winding down or something - maybe the shaft spinning? My other ski doesn't make that sound), and then the water leaking in when the ski started to hobble.

    So in regards to trying to seize, you mean the shaft itself? Is that what broke the clamp? Could it have been a fluke? The shaft doesn't turn when I start the ski out of water right now - is it supposed to, or only when water is passing through?

  4. #4
    flyin' the friendly skies airbornexp's Avatar
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    on these machine you need to check three things depending on if its running or not. if its not running you have to check the carbon ring around the drive shaft. if its leaking that bad it needs replaced. if its leaking around the VTS boot it may be as simple as a hose clamp or a new boot. I would also check the sponsons if they are leaking too. if its running and sinking you need to look into the back of the pump and see if there are two little tubes looking at you from the inside top of the venturi.(the cone before the steering nozzle) if you have one missing the bilge works in reverse and will sink you in seconds flat. after that i would check the carbon ring and the VTS boot and all lines behind that VTS housing unit.

  5. #5
    20 feet Boy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crackofdawn View Post
    The shaft doesn't turn when I start the ski out of water right now - is it supposed to, or only when water is passing through?
    You are saying when you start the motor the drive shaft isn't turning? It should be turning in or out of the water. If it is not turning there is a strip shaft or something is broken. I think the drive shaft is is being push back off the fly wheel splines witch is push the carbone ring foreword so water is coming in at the carbone ring maybe. They must have lost a drive shaft bumper when installing. They go on both end of the drive shaft. It may have some play in the shaft making it strip the end out. But I am just guessing. If the drive shaft is not turning there is differently something wrong.

  6. #6
    Alright, I'm going to see if the mechanic that replaced the boot is going to honor his warranty (the guy I bought the ski from is the one I had the work done through so he's contacting the mechanic for me).

    In terms of working on this myself, worst case scenario, how difficult is it to remove the shaft and check out all the parts to see if a part is missing?

  7. #7
    flyin' the friendly skies airbornexp's Avatar
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    removing the pump is 4-17mm nuts. the steering arm thats 2-10mm wrenches and the trim arm which is another 10mm. pull the pump and the shaft comes out the back. but before you pull the pump you need to pull the black accordion boot back (its a little difficult but it compresses)to expose the black o ring on the drive shaft and roll it forward towards the motor. then you can pull the drive shaft out the back.

  8. #8
    Thanks - I got the mechanic's number from the seller and I'm calling him tomorrow morning to tell him what happened and that the drive shaft is not spinning, and see what he will do for me. It's a 1:15 drive to the mechanic shop unfortunately but if he's willing to fix everything for free it will be worth it.

  9. #9
    20 feet Boy's Avatar
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    Good luck. and tell us what was wrong when you find out.

  10. #10
    Alright! Updates! Finally took it back to the mechanic and he took it apart slightly (took off the impeller assembly anyway) and I have some new pictures - looks like I may have 2 separate issues. First we'll look at the impeller - there was no bushing on the impeller where the drive shaft slips in and I'm guessing there is actually supposed to be a rubber bushing there, see the pic:



    As you can see, no bushing - if there is supposed to be one I'll order it.

    Now, take a look at the back of the Ski with the impeller assembly off - see the hose circled in red from the outside and also the inside of the ski:





    When we pulled off the impeller assembly that hose wasn't even in that hole, it was laying inside of the hull and I'm guessing thats where the water leaked in - I don't see any way that the hose can be 'held' in place and sealed so I'm guessing there is something missing in the ski that holds that in place - does anyone know how that hose gets held through that hole and what seals it there? Also the seal where the impeller mates up to the ski (the big rubber ring) is thrashed and needs replacing, though it doesn't look like that would really affect the ski's operation at all. Also the mechanic told me to use silicon around pretty much everything when reassembling it, anyone know which type of silicon to use?

    Here's a close up pic of the drive shaft with the impeller assembly off - I don't know how to tell if any parts are missing or shifted inside that might cause leaking (someone mentioned a carbon ring, not sure where that would be).



    Thanks SO much in advance for any advice! I just want to figure out what parts to order and then I'll slap the entire thing back together.

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