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  1. #1

    Tomorrow, first time out for newbie - tips??

    Alright, my brother and I are going to take one of the 1996 GTX's out tomorrow for it's maiden voyage.
    Neither of us have any experience with PWC's; we do have plenty of general boating experience from V-Hulls, current 24' Pontoon, and I have some Jet Boat experience when a good friend had a Berkley w/ a 460 Ford MANY years ago...

    Work Done:
    Gray fuel lines replaced, cleaned internal carb fuel filter & selector (carb filters looked very good, some early signs of 'goo' where lines attached to selector valve), new inline fuel & oil filter, new spark plugs, cleaned RAVE valves w/ new gaskets & o-rings, new wear ring, and pump oil changed.

    All tags are current, have insurance in place, full fire extinguisher, rope attached to front bow hook and coiled in front compartment along with a collapsible paddle.

    I currently have our toon out of the water for maintenance and cleaning; plan on just going out to a small / mid size lake near the house - plan on one person on the ski at a time and not venturing out too far.

    The ski starts and idles fine. We don't have the anti-rattle kit so obviously have impeller noise - while running on water in the drive it 'sounded' like we had a rattle from the motor area but not sure (I have a substantial loss in one ear and hard to tell where noises come from); my wife just noticed from the noise from the rear but she was a few feet away manning the water faucet, I was over the open engine compartment. Had a nice 'Pee' stream coming out the back along with some water out the exhaust.

    1. Plan on getting the anti-rattle cone but should the rattle be gone when we have any type of load on the pump? Normal to notice the rattle noise transferring and sounding like it may be coming from the motor when in the drive and the seats are off?
    2. The information gauge is un-readable; wrinkled screen - will repair polarizing film later.
    3. Obviously plan in verifying the carbon seal is not leaking when we first launch.
    4. Suggestions on things to watch or listen for?
    5. Riding technique suggestions?
    6. Any additional gear recommended for initial run?


  2. #2
    785xp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Make sure the drain plugs are in and the fuel selector is turned on. Simple things that can delay your time on the lake.

  3. #3
    Funny, I was wrapping up some things this morning and hopped on for a test fire after changing the fuel filter - sat there cranking over and over before I remembered to turn on the fuel selector...

    I've also installed new o-rings on the drain plugs - plan on getting in the routine of screwing in the plugs just before I unhook the rear ratchet strap.

  4. #4
    GPRXP vspec1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Orlando, Fl.
    If it were me I would bypass the fuel selector all together...They tend to build up trash in them and the first time you switch it to reserve, the carbs get plugged.

  5. #5
    moparguy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Niagara Falls, Ontario
    Disconnect that rope from the front bow hook, sucking up a rope in your impeller no fun. Just make a slip knot and wrap around bars to tie off.

  6. #6
    diamondwatercraft's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    SE Michigan
    I like to start all my machines before I leave for the lake. Then again at the ramp just before I drop them in. Just to put a little heat in them and make sure that they start when I get there. Only let them run on the trailer like that for about 30 seconds. This saves embarrassment when you get it the water and if you have an issue you can deal with it in the garage not in the water while you may have a line of boats waiting for you to get underway.

  7. #7
    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    near Toronto, Canada
    Replying to an old thread, but others may come along and read it later...
    Quote Originally Posted by CZSteve View Post

    All tags are current, have insurance in place, full fire extinguisher, rope attached to front bow hook and coiled in front compartment along with a collapsible paddle.

    ... plan on just going out to a small / mid size lake near the house - plan on one person on the ski at a time and not venturing out too far.

    When you get to the lake, I would suggest NOT launching it right away. Keep it strapped down to the trailer, front and rear. Take the seat off. Back it down the launch ramp until the jet pump intake is fully submerged. Make sure there is no debris under or around the hull, no loose rocks or sticks, etc.

    Hull should not float above the trailer, you want it solidly strapped down to the bunks. Set the parking brake in the tow vehicle.

    Now you can start and run the PWC engine as long as you need. The engine will be cooled in the normal manner from the jet pump flow and pressure. You can monitor the engine compartment, check for water leaks, check for exhaust leaks, check engine temperatures with your hand (be careful). There should be no exhaust leaking into the hull and no water leaks.

    Bring a strong LED flashlight to see into the shadows. You can apply throttle and steering.

    Check all the hose and exhaust clamps for tightness and correct positioning before leaving the house. Bring tools to retighten the clamps if needed.

    Check that the engine will shut down and restart in the water. Let it sit for a few minutes, then start it agin in the water. Should start easily and reliably. Warm 2-stroke engine should need little or no choke to start.

    Do not launch it until you are comfortable that everything is as it should be.

    I recommend that you have another boat or PWC on hand, should you need a tow back to shore. Have the proper safety gear on board, wear your PFD.

    Gear is a whole subject of its own. Lots of prior threads and posts listing what others recommend and carry.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Lake Conroe (Montgomery,) Texas
    I wonder how CZSteve's maiden voyage went over 3 years ago? Steve?

    Anyway, another thing to make sure to have on-board one (or both) of the skis is a tow rope; just in case!

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