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  1. #1

    Newbie buying 2000 Yamaha xl limited 1200 with bad cylinder

    Hey folks,

    Been reading here for a while and have a question. I know its not very polite to make a first post a question, but I am in need and hope you all can help. I have never owned a PWC before, and I've been chatting with a guy about this 2000 Yamaha xl1200 for a while now. Was going to trade him my 2005 honda shadow motorcycle until he told me the 3rd cylinder has a hole in it. I have searched the forum and have found that is not uncommon, and that possibly I should be able to change out the one cylinder, piston, etc....and do a few other things while I'm at it. I am not going to trade the motorcycle, but asked him if he had been trying to sell it. Keep in mind that at this point I only have pictures and he lives about 5 hours from me. We negotiated to a price of $600 and I would come and pick it up. From what I could tell, and all things being equal, if the thing ran like it should it should be worth around $2000. Am I getting into more than what I bargained for? What else should I look for when I go and see this thing? Is there anything that would scream to you..."run Forest, run?"

    Thanks for you input....


  2. #2
    mudslanger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Huntsville Al
    The bad thing about buying a waverunner that old is that the motor running or not may have been pulled and replaced with a cheap built engine. and if it has a lot of hours and still original equipment then the crank can be worn out. and if there is a hole in the piston and it was run long there is a good chance or crank damage.
    when buying a non running ski always assume the motor is junk and set price accordingly.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Texas City, Texas
    You did not post where you live. This is critical because where ever you live, there are a few folks who really know how to build a 1200 engine, and not only that, can do it as economically as possible. For example, a new crank can cost you 900, or you may get yours rebuilt better than new for less than 600 if you are in the business and know where to go.... get my drift.

    Here's the bottom line. You yourself say that if it were running "right", it should be worth 2000. If you are willing to pay 600 for it, that means that you have 1400 to repair it before you get hurt (financially). If the guy throws in a trailer for free, then that means you have an additional 300-400 to fix the engine because that is what it would cost to get a used trailer. If you find the right guy in your area such as Carl at Long Island racing (New York) Richard at WFO Performance (Houston) or Harry at Group K (Arizona), they will literally put an engine together that is better than new for you.

    Let's say you went this route, had it professionally reworked, rode it for 2 seasons, and then sold it. Do you think you could then sell it and get most of your money back? I do, provided that you get it rebuilt properly from the beginning. Let's say you sold it for 1500 after 2 years. That means you rode a waverunner for 2years and it only cost you 500 to do it. What a deal!!!!!

    Another way of asking yourself this question, is that if it actually were professionally rebuilt and the seller wanted 2000, would you buy it?
    Last edited by salty; 07-10-2013 at 09:43 AM.

  4. #4
    Thanks for the replies. I live on the east coast of Georgia. This guy is the one and only owner so he says. It does come with the trailer. I have rebuilt motorcycle and car engines myself but never tackled a waverunner before. Could I do this myself? Also the owner said there is only 50 hours on it.

  5. #5
    Is it almost winter yet??? ProXR 440's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Macomb, MI
    I'd buy it in a heartbeat as long as it has never seen saltwater! With the low hours chances are it was old fuel and lack of use causing the carbs to not function properly. Has it always been stored indoors? If it's in nice clean 50 hour condition it's a steal! If you've worked on bikes and cars the waverunner engine is simple. The carbs are another story but definitely doable yourself with some research and online help.

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