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  1. #1

    GP1200R Hydrolocked, but ran fine all day after. Thoughts?

    I forgot to screw in the bildge plugs on the ramp. Unloaded the ski, parked the car/trailer and came back. Engine started right up for 1 second then died. Second crank and starter just clicked. Pulled off the seat and found carbs submerged in lake water.

    Pulled it out of the water and let the hull drain. In the parking lot I tried to crank it about 2 more times - one time it actually cranked then locked, and the last time it was just locked. ~30 minutes later I pulled all three sparkplugs and it was like a water-bomb spray out of all three. It was disgusting and really imbarassing. I cranked it over and over, cranking for ~10 seconds then waiting ~30 seconds for about 25 minutes total process. She was still gushing a lot of mist water when I finally said - "thats it, I give up", and I put the plugs back in. The plugs fouled with water ( I checked them once more). At this point I was on the brink of giving up. ABout 20 minutes later when I'm ready to leave to go home for the day I got mad and impatient over the situation. I proceeded to crank it over with the throttle wide open. About 20 seconds in, she starts to fire and catch.

    She fires but dies, then fires again and dies. A few times into this the engine just about stays running - perhaps on 1/3 or 2/3 the engine but nowhere near anything usable. I let it rest for 10 minutes

    After the 10, engine fires a little easier but not without throttle. I give it about three starts for ~5 seconds each and its sounding better than before.

    Another 5 minute rest, fire again. This time the engine is almost able to idle (About 75% good idle)

    Another 5, and engine idles about 95% perfect for 10 seconds before I stop the engine. Time to put back in the water.

    In the no-wake zone idle is OK, but anything over that and the engine was very rough running. About 2~5 minutes of that and she was clear to run in open water. First few throttle pulls were bumpy and rough, so I desided to pump the throttle open then closed full about 10 times in a row. After that it was 100% smooth. We ran ~17 gallons of 40:1 fuel/premix in it for the remainder of the day (About 6 hours of all kinds of fun) all the while running great and perhaps better than ever, enjoying the new Riva intake grate and pump seal kit.

    Brought it back home and pulled the plugs. Everything looked pretty good inside the engine and the plugs looked normal. Sprayed a bunch of WD-40 down the holes reinstalled the plugs and cranked it over for about 5 seconds.

    In reading online, I may have done the right thing after all - by clearing the water without letting it sit - I'd say the engine was totally flooded for about 1 hour total max before getting it back up to full run and temperature. no?

    I have a lot of concern (like surfaces, bearings, and anything requiring smooth/lube vs dirty pond water), but my biggest road killer would be from bent rods. Can the starter bend a rod? Should I be worried?

    Why isnt the stock airbox set up to not allow water in?

  2. #2
    elmatta's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    You did the right thing by cranking the engine and removing all the water. Keep it fogged/lubed/wd-40ed to make sure all parts of the cranked are properly covered to avoid rust spots. Running it would also cause most if not all the water to evaporate eventually.

    Not quite sure if the starter is strong enough to bend a rod, but your engine would of blown up by now if you had a bent rod.

    Engines need too much air to be able to have a submersible airbox. I believe the restriction from the material of whatever is blocking the water would be insufficient for the engine.

  3. #3
    Not even an air box snorkel? The carbs were fully submerged an inch over their tops.

    Thank you. Sounds like engine will be fine.

  4. #4
    I don't know if a starter could bend a rod, but in an attempt to start, if ONE of the cylinders fired, than it's possible (likely) that you would have bent a rod. When you first suspected hydrolock (seeing the carbs underwater), I would have pulled the plugs and then cranked it

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    I hydrolocked an engine once for an instant just cranking over, thought to be a leaking needle valve and fuel. Never had an issue until about 20 hrs later when the rod broke, and unfortunately it sawed the crankcase in half. Autopsy showed the bent rod, just took a while to break. Getting it running right away was the best thing, get it good and hot to rid it of water.

    As far as the snorkel, the air cleaner is designed to not get water in it, it has several turns and dividers in it, that is why you have to turn a capsized boat only one way to right it, it keeps water out of the engine. However, that is considering the engine is NOT running after being capsized. The air intake is well off the bottom, but if the water level is higher than the carbs they would expect you to see the boat is almost sunk from appearance and not try to start the engine.

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