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  1. #1

    Slow Crankin' 97 GTI

    I just picked up a 97 GTI, low hour machine, not beat on, 1-owner ski. Here’s the story… Previous owner claims that last season, on a slow ride to a nearby beach the ski quit on them just as they reached the beach. Tried to restart and it wouldn’t crank, or would barley crank. Thinking it was just a bad battery, got a good battery out of another ski and had the same result. The ski sat the rest of that season until the other day when we got hold of it. Tried to start it off a jump box and a car battery and the ski will turn over but very slowly(a little faster w/ the plugs out, but not much). The shaft is hard to turn by hand even w/ the plugs out. There is nothing wrapped around the shaft and the impeller is clean. Pistons go up and down, and no real noises that come out of the top or bottom that I can hear. Motor rotates as if it is in the compression stroke constantly – to give you an idea of how hard it is to turn over. Any ideas??


  2. #2
    This is how I run a jetski shop in the desert nmpeter's Avatar
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    sounds to me like the engine or jetpump are sized.

    pull the jetpump and check to see how much it takes to turn the prop..if really stiff, pull the driveshaft and do a compression test.

    DO NOT try to start the engine without removing the driveshaft.

  3. #3
    Pulled the pump and it spins just fine. With the drive shaft hanging I still couldn't turn the engine by hand. Also found that the engine is loose on the bracket that it sits on -it moves side to side about a quarter inch. Took the head off and the pistons and rings don't look too bad. It leads me to believe I'm in for crank issues - let me know your thoughts on this one!

  4. #4
    This is how I run a jetski shop in the desert nmpeter's Avatar
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    a bad crank bearing. sorry

  5. #5
    If you did not see any signs of rusting while the head was off - you may want to remove the front magneto cover and inspect for water damage there -
    not saying it is not going to end up being a bottom end issue, but rather hopeful it is not..

  6. #6
    Correctme if I'm wrong. The engine should not be loose on that mounting plate right? Did the movement of the engine throw the crank bearing? What steps do I take to get at those bearings?

    Also didn't notice any rust inside and I'm sure il have the mag cover off sooner or later!;lol

  7. #7
    stuckmoto's Avatar
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    The motor sits on a mounting plate(4 bolts) and that bolts to your motor mounts(1 cap screw). Motor mounts have two screws each. All should be tight. At the very least your alignment was off which could have caused issues. I just pulled the motor in my 97 GTI a couple weeks ago to replace the PTO & driveshaft.
    I'm also thinking bad crank bearing. FWIW...SBT has motors for about $750.

  8. #8
    Myself's Avatar
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    I would guess possibly somw water sat in the crankcase and rusted the crank. Or, possibly something happened and sheared the brass rotary gear and the crank gear is binding on it. Either way you will need to pull the flywheel and stator, the front housing, and split the case.

  9. #9
    Motor is out. Top end is off. So I need to pull the front mag cover off and then thepto side and split cases. What then? Can I get the bearings off myself or do I get a new crank?

  10. #10
    Myself's Avatar
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    Pull front mag cover, the PTO can stay on the crank for now. Intake needs to be off. Flip it upside down on a couple 4x4's and let the rods hang down. Take out all the bolts and smack it around a bit with a rubber or plastic mallet until the halves come apart. Post pics of the crank so we can see what's wrong with it.

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