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  1. #1

    New to me 96 Polaris

    Hello everyone, first post here...

    I just picked up a 1996 Polaris 700. It is my first ski ever and honestly, I have no idea about PWC as I do cars. I got too good of a deal to pass it up.

    It has been sitting for over a year because it stopped running. Previous owner said that it ran great, then all of a sudden it started to stutter really bad(on the same day it was running great), and only go 5 mph. He took it to a mechanic and said that the fuel had sat too long and gunked up the carbs,filters, etc. It has been sitting since.

    I am very hands on and this will be an ongoing project for me(hopefully won't be too bad). My first question is does anyone know where I can get a service manual for it? I tried googling it but kept coming up empty handed and it seems like there are some PDF versions of it floating around.

    Thank you.


  2. #2
    BlueFishCrisis's Avatar
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    Aug 2011
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    Welcome to the Hulk - You can find tons of information here: Http://PolarisPWCknowledge.shorturl.com

  3. #3
    skyboy's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
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    Irish Hills, Michigan
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    Hey Noobster, you have no idea what you're getting in to........

    I promised my 14 y/o son we'd get a jet ski so late 2011 I bought my first ski ever, a 1998 SLH 700 with a locked up engine (the one in my avatar). The price was right but in retrospect, it was in rough shape. I knew nothing about PWC's but have tinkered with other 2-stroke powered machines for 40+ yrs. Even with that handicap I was able to get the SLH running and on the water after a few months of work. After that, it didn't take long for those skis to start multipying. Now I have an SLT, 2 SLHs' and a "spare" SLH hull, lol.

    The guys here are an encyclopedia of knowledge, plus you can download manuals, troubleshooting guides, etc., all the reference material you need. "Clymer Polaris PWC Shop Manuals" are pretty easy to find on ebay for ~$35 but don't think you'll need it once you access all the info here.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by skyboy View Post
    Hey Noobster, you have no idea what you're getting in to........

    I promised my 14 y/o son we'd get a jet ski so late 2011 I bought my first ski ever, a 1998 SLH 700 with a locked up engine (the one in my avatar). The price was right but in retrospect, it was in rough shape. I knew nothing about PWC's but have tinkered with other 2-stroke powered machines for 40+ yrs. Even with that handicap I was able to get the SLH running and on the water after a few months of work. After that, it didn't take long for those skis to start multipying. Now I have an SLT, 2 SLHs' and a "spare" SLH hull, lol.

    The guys here are an encyclopedia of knowledge, plus you can download manuals, troubleshooting guides, etc., all the reference material you need. "Clymer Polaris PWC Shop Manuals" are pretty easy to find on ebay for ~$35 but don't think you'll need it once you access all the info here.
    To be honest, when I read your first line "you have no idea what you're getting in to...", I thought i was about to read a horror story about the machine.

    Thanks for the info. I have always wanted a ski and this one was a good deal(ie. free!). I've been browsing the techies and manuals online and will go deeper. My first task today is to check the engine compression, and if that is good, I'll start stripping down the carbs, replace the fuel lines/filters, fuel selector valve, etc. I do want to check if its got the updated ignition too, hopefully it does.

    I have a feeling that the family of skis will multiply soon too. My brothers have wanted skis too, and now both of them have SUVs with hitches so I think they'll be getting some real soon too

  5. #5
    skyboy's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
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    One ride and you'll be hooked! Plus the more people you have to ride with the better!
    I'll be riding one of the skis this afternoon and working on another 700 engine this evening.

  6. #6
    So now I'm wondering if its worth it to fix the PWC...I just checked the CDI and its the original ignition system. Since I got it for free, I'd hate to spend $800(seems like the ebay seller is the only one whos got them) off the bat if the ignition system is bad plus the other current problems its got. And from all the readings I've read, the original system WILL fail eventually...

    If the ignition system isn't bad I could fix the other issues and hope that a supplier(oem or aftermarket) comes along with a production run.

  7. #7
    skyboy's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
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    Irish Hills, Michigan
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    One of my skis has the original ignition. When I hit the starter it starts and runs just fine. As long as it does that, I'll keep riding it. If it breaks, well, I'll cross that bridge when I get there.

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