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  1. #1

    96 ZXI 1100 only running 50 mph

    Hey guys new to the site but have been lurking for a bit. I have a 94 XP and I picked up this 96 ZXI a month ago. I have drove Seadoo, Yamaha and I have to say I am really loving how the Kawasaki runs compared to the others. That being said, old skis have problems and my intentions are to get this ski in the best condition I can. Any advice will be appreciated. I have had to have the E-box connections done over because of water damage and lack of contact. The ski has a smooth idle but if I give it the slightest bit of gas in a no wake zone it vibrates the front of the ski more on the left hand side. It is also very unresponsive on the throttle at first right on takeoff but eventually gets good speed up to 50 but I have read some of these getting to 62. The trim does not work and after speaking with a friend he said once the manual trim and KATS is working it should gain some speed. Where should I start as far as getting more speed and clearing up some of the issues I mentioned? Carbs, top end? Want to stay as stock as possible.


  2. #2
    steve45's Avatar
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    Welcome aboard, ThatJetSkiFella!

    Sounds like you may have trash in the impeller, or too much clearance between the impeller and the housing. Could also be improper sealing around the pump that is causing turbulence and cavitation.

    Trim is a common problem on these. There should be a rubber bellows-type seal on the trim cable at the back of the 'Ski. Inspect it's condition. Open the trim box and see if it's corroded inside.

    It would also be a good idea to replace the oil lines. They get brittle with age and can split.

  3. #3
    Thanks for the welcome bud, Im also from Texas. I will give a look at all the things you mentioned. Thanks for the help. As for the trim box, where is that located ? Is it the one on the handle bars? I have put the oil delete plate and am now premixing. Was suprised at the clamps holding the oil lines on. Crazy man. BTW cool avatar lol!

  4. #4
    steve45's Avatar
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    If I remember right, and it's been 15 years since I had an 1100 ZXi, the trim box is on the right side, near the front, inside the hull. Follow the cable from the back of the 'Ski and you'll find it.

  5. #5
    The trim box is a greyish black triangular looking thing with a bubble top cover located just to the right front of the engine just behind the gas tank. As already said they are notorious for getting water inside and ruining the motor and gears. As for the running issues, double check all your spark plugs and wires first. The one I got one of the spark plug connector tips had come off and had been arcing so long the threaded portion of the spark plug was actually gone. On something that old it is very likely the carbs could also stand to be gone through. The KATS system really shouldnt have anything that would be wrong with it unless the hoses or hull openings are plugged. It is nothing but hoses that allow a venturi effect to draw in air from the inside the hull and come out in the water stream under the hull. Again as already brought up, check out your pump, probably excess clearance.

  6. #6
    steve45's Avatar
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    The KATS system is the Kawasaki Automatic Trim System. All it does is run the trim to full down, then back to neutral as the engine revs up. The hull openings and hoses are the air induction system.

    Make sure your hull has a bowl-shaped piece attached to the bottom front of it. It's about 10 - 12 inches in diameter. It was part of a recall but a lot of them didn't get modified, and I don't think Kawasaki supplies parts anymore. Anyway, without the mod, it's possible for the boat to just flip over while going fast. It has to do with the very small surface area that the hull is riding on because of the air induction system. One minute you're cruising along at 60+ MPH, a few seconds later the 'Ski is doing flips and your skidding along on your face!

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Comp View Post
    The trim box is a greyish black triangular looking thing with a bubble top cover located just to the right front of the engine just behind the gas tank. As already said they are notorious for getting water inside and ruining the motor and gears. As for the running issues, double check all your spark plugs and wires first. The one I got one of the spark plug connector tips had come off and had been arcing so long the threaded portion of the spark plug was actually gone. On something that old it is very likely the carbs could also stand to be gone through. The KATS system really shouldnt have anything that would be wrong with it unless the hoses or hull openings are plugged. It is nothing but hoses that allow a venturi effect to draw in air from the inside the hull and come out in the water stream under the hull. Again as already brought up, check out your pump, probably excess clearance.
    Thanks for the info man, I will take a look tomorrow if I have daylight after work and try to see what its condition is
    Quote Originally Posted by steve45 View Post
    The KATS system is the Kawasaki Automatic Trim System. All it does is run the trim to full down, then back to neutral as the engine revs up. The hull openings and hoses are the air induction system. Make sure your hull has a bowl-shaped piece attached to the bottom front of it. It's about 10 - 12 inches in diameter. It was part of a recall but a lot of them didn't get modified, and I don't think Kawasaki supplies parts anymore. Anyway, without the mod, it's possible for the boat to just flip over while going fast. It has to do with the very small surface area that the hull is riding on because of the air induction system. One minute you're cruising along at 60+ MPH, a few seconds later the 'Ski is doing flips and your skidding along on your face!
    I have a wierd piece on the front of the hull. I will post pics tomorrow and see if it is the one you are talking about, I was just talking with my mechanic about that piece last saturday

  8. #8
    stubburnjdh's Avatar
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    yep its an akward looking triangle plate that looks out of place. You can see it on mine in my avatar. The zxi is a fun hull.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by stubburnjdh View Post
    yep its an akward looking triangle plate that looks out of place. You can see it on mine in my avatar. The zxi is a fun hull.
    Cool, yeah I have the triangle plate. Its the same as your avi. Well took the ski out to the lake saturday and let my dad ride it. After telling him the rules and going over some basics he still managed to pull a good size rock thru. It came out luckily but the steering feels different now and the ski is only getting up to 40 with the trim now in the down position (it was in the middle). I think the steering feels different because of the trim. Taking it to the mechanic so he can get it on the water and make sure the rock didn't do anything to the pump system, etc. Probably going to go ahead and fix the trim. Used trim boxes and cables are $350 on ebay but Im looking still because it is expensive. And its a risk because whos to say it works and no refunds on electric parts so Im thinking of buying new. Also thinking if I can just set the trim in up position and just leave it there? Is it just that nut that goes to the trim cable I have to adjust? Is the kats and manual trim all controlled within that grey triangle?

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