Results 1 to 10 of 10
  1. #1
    StevoH@O's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Greenfield, WI
    Posts
    133

    Advantages/Disadvantages to the MSX models

    So I'm thinking about buying a slightly newer MSX model over my Virage. However, my understanding is that there is some metallurgy issue with the Weber 4 stroke engine. Then is sounds as if any rebuild of the Weber is much more difficult than a 2 cycle (and expensive). So does that imply that the best unit with the most dependability is a MSX 140?

    If someone could list perceived advantages or disadvantages of these units, it would help me to make a future decision.

    BTW - I have rebuilt three 95 750 SLT, two Virage TX, and one Genesis. All were carb'ed models.

    Thanks guys!

    Stevo


  2. #2
    Banned User
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Milwaukee WI
    Posts
    16,708
    +1
    1,324
    If you dont mind the expense and hassle of rebuilding a Weber motor they are pretty nice from what I hear. Fix the known issues and it should be good. The 140s are very simple.

  3. #3
    ripcuda's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Newman Lake, WA
    Posts
    2,389
    +1
    166
    Alright... I'll take a stab at this... since I have and have rebuilt both.

    MSX 140
    - made in 2003 and 2004 ('04 lighter hull w/ better ride plate)
    - 1192cc triple, 2-stroke, direct injection (Ficht EMM controlled), ~135hp
    - Polaris engine... affordable parts
    - - 140 specific parts are more expensive than Polaris red domestic 1200 parts... less of them
    - low emissions certified (burns oil but much less than non-direct inject 2-strokes)
    - Nicasil plated cylinders (reliable)
    - mid grade (or better) fuel recommended
    - quality 2-stroke oil highly recommended
    - throttle position sensors (TPS) are common issue (~$175)
    - EMM internal components start to degrade with age = running issues. Not uncommon to need to get EMM "repaired" ($400+)
    - - EMM is water cooled, if water supply fails can cook EMM
    - common for stock fuel pressure regulator to fall off (likely resulting in engine damage if not caught early)
    - - cheap to permanently fix, but got to remove fuel pump canister
    - more room in the hull to get to and remove engine... easier to remove engine (compared to 110/150)
    - very fuel efficient for a large 2-stroke
    - noisier engine, shakes like a big 2-stroke, slightly louder exhaust sound than 110/150
    - more linear powerband
    - more complex (and more prone to jamming) reverse mechanism (compared to 110/150)
    - homemade led trouble code reading light available


    MSX 110/150
    - made in 2004 only (fewer made) (lighter hull... better ride plate)
    - 750cc twin, turbocharged, 4-stroke, fuel injected (Bosch ECU controlled), ~135+ hp
    - MSX 110 is a detuned version of the 150, with smaller intercooler, no BOV, a different impeller and ~110hp
    - Weber engine... German made... expensive parts
    - low emissions certified (doesn't burn oil)
    - Nicasil plated cylinders (unreliable, known to chip/crack = bad compression)
    - - requires bore/sleeve or replating to fix ($700+)
    - premium fuel only
    - full synthetic oil required (25hr oil change intervals = ~$60 oil/filter)
    - plastic water pump drive gear (vulnerable to breaking = overheating = blown headgaskets and/or warped cylinders (worse case))
    - - permanent fix to plastic drive gear using all metal FST parts available (~$100-200 parts and full rebuild)
    - closed-loop cooling circuit (w/ anti-freeze)... less crude buildup in engine
    - power-down module (SIFB) is most common electrical component failure ($200)
    - very tight engine packaging in the hull... very difficult and time consuming to remove the engine (compared to 140)
    - - must remove engine to replace head gasket or pistons/rings
    - stock oil tank sometimes leak water into the oil and/or baffle plate comes loose
    - - upgraded Weber oil tank w/ rollover tank available ($400)... better design and lighter
    - prone to oil ingestion (oil in the intake) issues (from oil overfill and/or ski rollover)... preventable with mods
    - most fuel efficient 4-stroke (smallest 4-stroke engine in a ski)
    - quiet, smooth engine... it's a 4-stroke... little quieter exhaust sound than 140
    - turbo powerband... comes on stronger in higher rpms w/ boost
    - smooth, less-complex reverse mechanism (compared to 140)
    - Polaris Digital Wrench required to read/clear any trouble codes

    Feel free to correct or add to.

    Cheers!
    Last edited by ripcuda; 02-23-2015 at 10:14 AM. Reason: additional items

  4. +1 by:


  5. #4
    Kosh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    1,483
    +1
    83
    I must be an optimist as I can only see advantages in owning any model of the MSX

  6. #5
    Resident electronics hacker UnityRacing's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Va Beach, VA
    Posts
    1,425
    +1
    28
    Never realized the Weber was a closed loop cooling system. Neat.

  7. #6
    StevoH@O's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Greenfield, WI
    Posts
    133
    RipCuda That was intense, but the best single description with the strengths and weakness I've seen pulled together in one spot. I appreciate the time you spent assembling the differences; performance stats; and known issues with each ski. I'll keep my eyes open for one of these units. I suppose the trick to buying one that is not running is to try to figure what weakness caused the particular unit to fail. In any case, it seems like the best solution is to tear any machine down and pay the piper and have most of the known issues addressed. Otherwise you perform a rebuild only to find out the EMM or plastic drive gear or whatever is still your issue after a rebuild.

    Is there a good parts source for the Weber? Or is there a different source for the 140? Or is there a specialty vendor that is the "go to" for all MSX?

    I find it interesting that the Nicasil works well in the 140 but is a known mess in the Webers. Different manufacturers/processes?

    So let's say you get a Weber 150, that runs and then after 1 season, it lets loose. I tinker around and am able to pull the engine myself. Are we talking $1000, $1500, or $2000+ for the rebuild? I don't suppose my local machine shop will be the place to go for the cylinder issue. Who has new cylinders/Pistons/rings?

    I want to walk into this "eyes wide open" and not be hamstrung with lack of parts or cobbling a bit of this and a bit of that hoping that $1K to $2K MIGHT get the job done.

    Thanks for sharing

  8. #7
    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    near Toronto, Canada
    Posts
    36,584
    +1
    1,272
    I have an MSX 140, 2004 version. We like it, despite the original engine eventually failing at 180 hours with a seized crankshaft bearing. Rebuilt the engine to OEM specs (better, actually) and it ran well last summer and I expect it to run well next summer too.

    The ripcuda MSX description is quite accurate overall, I must say.

    If I was again faced with an MSX hull that needed an engine, I would give serious thought to an engine conversion. The Chevy small block of the PWC world is the Seadoo 4-Tec engine and several MSX are now running around with 4-Tec power. 200+hp is easily provided with a completely stock engine. The MSX hull, by all reports, handles wonderfully and copes gracefully with the extra power.

    My current view is that Polaris simply did not have the optimal engines for the MSX hull, so all we got was 1192cc 2-stroke or 750cc turbo 4-stroke. There is a very limited number of 200ish hp Matrix 2-stroke conversions that are well regarded but the triple tuned pipe carburetor engine is not for all tastes.

    Adapting the venerable 4-Tec or perhaps the impressive Yamaha 1800cc engine to the MSX hull requires mechanical skills and fabrication capabilities. Now that a few have been done, there is information and knowledge around that can ease the process.

  9. #8
    ripcuda's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Newman Lake, WA
    Posts
    2,389
    +1
    166
    Quote Originally Posted by UnityRacing
    Never realized the Weber was a closed loop cooling system. Neat.
    Only Weber I can think of that does not have closed-loop cooling is the Hydrospace S4 standup

    Quote Originally Posted by [email protected]
    Is there a good parts source for the Weber? Or is there a different source for the 140? Or is there a specialty vendor that is the "go to" for all MSX?
    Randy at WeberPower (dot com) is the goto guy for all things Weber engine related.
    140 stuff is more readily available from other sources, like John at Watcon or Polaris dealers, since it's closely related to the much more common Polaris red domestic 1200 (1165cc) triple 2-stroke parts. For 140 pistons and rings, you can use the ones from a Polaris XC 800 snowmobile (standard 85mm and made for Nicasil)

    I find it interesting that the Nicasil works well in the 140 but is a known mess in the Webers. Different manufacturers/processes?
    Yes. Webers made in Germany. The engines used for the MSX were some of the early Weber 750MPE marine versions. They apparently had some issues with the Nicasil plating process for those blocks leading to a high % of early failures (exacerbated by overly rich fueling on the MSX). Later gen Weber block plating is greatly improved. The Polaris FST blocks don't have the plating issues the MSX blocks do.

    So let's say you get a Weber 150, that runs and then after 1 season, it lets loose. I tinker around and am able to pull the engine myself. Are we talking $1000, $1500, or $2000+ for the rebuild? I don't suppose my local machine shop will be the place to go for the cylinder issue. Who has new cylinders/Pistons/rings?
    A standard bore sleeved block, new pistons, all new gaskets, o-rings and seals, FST metal parts (to remove plastic water pump drive gear), better thermostat, new plugs, oil, filter, cam chain link, upgraded oil tanks... this is quickly going to run you close to $2k. And that's not counting any labor for engine removal, inspection, prep, rebuild, reinstall. And that's also assuming nothing else is bad like a blown turbo. All this stuff can be bought and delivered to your door. The only local machining I've had to have done so far was getting a head milled flat after a bad overheat. So you can see how the cost can add up pretty quickly for a Weber rebuild. Rebuilding a 140 is a lot cheaper.

    Better to know... before the plunge!

    Cheers!

  10. #9
    PWC Addict lilman573's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Central NJ
    Posts
    2,946
    +1
    207
    Quote Originally Posted by K447 View Post
    I have an MSX 140, 2004 version. We like it, despite the original engine eventually failing at 180 hours with a seized crankshaft bearing. Rebuilt the engine to OEM specs (better, actually) and it ran well last summer and I expect it to run well next summer too.

    The ripcuda MSX description is quite accurate overall, I must say.

    If I was again faced with an MSX hull that needed an engine, I would give serious thought to an engine conversion. The Chevy small block of the PWC world is the Seadoo 4-Tec engine and several MSX are now running around with 4-Tec power. 200+hp is easily provided with a completely stock engine. The MSX hull, by all reports, handles wonderfully and copes gracefully with the extra power.

    My current view is that Polaris simply did not have the optimal engines for the MSX hull, so all we got was 1192cc 2-stroke or 750cc turbo 4-stroke. There is a very limited number of 200ish hp Matrix 2-stroke conversions that are well regarded but the triple tuned pipe carburetor engine is not for all tastes.

    Adapting the venerable 4-Tec or perhaps the impressive Yamaha 1800cc engine to the MSX hull requires mechanical skills and fabrication capabilities. Now that a few have been done, there is information and knowledge around that can ease the process.
    Come to the dark side Keith.... The MSX conversion side

  11. #10
    ripcuda's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Newman Lake, WA
    Posts
    2,389
    +1
    166
    Bump for Spring-time shoppers!

    Plus... MSX 110/150 ECU is under the knife. Smart folks are currently tweaking the ECU for increased performance. Results forthcoming.


    Cheers!

  12. +1 by:


Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Some history to the MSX build
    By ph2ocraft in forum MSX/Matrix
    Replies: 38
    Last Post: 02-11-2014, 01:40 PM
  2. Replies: 2
    Last Post: 01-08-2011, 03:04 AM
  3. MSX 150 to the MSXTREME
    By Keddano in forum Conversion PWC Performance Skis
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 09-15-2008, 03:44 PM
  4. How to make the X models go 80
    By MIARider in forum 4-Tec Performance
    Replies: 58
    Last Post: 03-25-2008, 05:45 PM
  5. Advantages/Disadvantages to Riva Power Filter Tube
    By Red Devil in forum 4-Tec Performance
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 07-11-2005, 12:24 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •