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  1. #1

    1996 SLT 780 Rebirth

    History thus far: I found out that a cousin had a slt780 with a bum motor. The ski had been sitting up since about summer 2004 (covered some of that time). The engine tech the cousin took the ski to said it would cost more to fix than it was worth so they just sat it up. I love it when somebody says something is not worth fixing. I also have another 96slt780 and have loved it. It turns out that the cousin doesn't want any money for the boat. He just wants to keep the trailer. Sounded good to me so I went and picked it up on a flatbed and brought it home and commenced to strippin'. So if this project goes bust and I turn the ski into a reef, I am only out $25 for the wood that went into the stands.

    Heres pics from the strip down and cleaning:
    exterior needs some tlc



    crankcase with the scarred and busted center


    various parts






    bilge after a round of degreaser

    underside and stands

    the hauler

    Most of the pile took about a week of nights. The flywheel on the other hand took a while. Without any instruction I deduced that the three threaded holed were for me to insert a bolt and press them against the flywheel housing (dont laugh). So I did that and it didnt give me the results that I had expected. I then went to autozone and got a 3-jaw puller. The jaws would not fit behind the wheel so I used the bolts that I now could not remove from the flywheel as they were stripped. I used heat, I hit the end of the puller bolt, I used wd40. After I sheared the head off of a 3/8 ratchet and snapped an aluminum cheater I asked for assitance and 'tooled up'. With, new 9/16 bolts in the newly threaded hole, a improvised plate, and one guy laying on top of the crankcase (that was tied to the bench) and the other guy on the wrong end of a 3' cheater it broke free. The flywheel and puller flew across the room and hit a chair (while in the air). Without the chair the wheel goes another 5-10 feet I estimate. The 3/8 inch thick plate was bowed out after it came off. I dont think that the wheel was on this tight from the beginning. I suspect that something I did made it tighter. Anyways, I hope yall get a kick out of the story. Give me some feedback on what direction you would go with a/the engine if it was yours. Thanks
    Matt


  2. #2
    Click avatar for tech links/info, donation request K447's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mvd6 View Post
    History thus far: I found out that a cousin had a slt780 with a bum motor.... Most of the pile took about a week of nights. The flywheel on the other hand took a while.

    Without any instruction I deduced that the three threaded holed were for me to insert a bolt and press them against the flywheel housing (don't laugh). So I did that and it didn't give me the results that I had expected.

    I then went to Autozone and got a 3-jaw puller. The jaws would not fit behind the wheel so I used the bolts that I now could not remove from the flywheel as they were stripped. I used heat, I hit the end of the puller bolt, I used wd40. After I sheared the head off of a 3/8 ratchet and snapped an aluminum cheater I asked for assistance and 'tooled up'.

    With, new 9/16 bolts in the newly threaded hole, a improvised plate, and one guy laying on top of the crankcase (that was tied to the bench) and the other guy on the wrong end of a 3' cheater it broke free. The flywheel and puller flew across the room and hit a chair (while in the air). Without the chair the wheel goes another 5-10 feet I estimate. The 3/8 inch thick plate was bowed out after it came off.

    I don't think that the wheel was on this tight from the beginning. I suspect that something I did made it tighter. Anyways, I hope y'all get a kick out of the story.

    Give me some feedback on what direction you would go with a/the engine if it was yours. Thanks
    Matt
    Good thing you tied that guy down, or he would have gone flying too!

  3. #3
    Moderator beerdart's Avatar
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  4. #4
    So what direction do I need to start heading in as far as the powertrain is concerned? I want a reliable ride that I dont have in the garage more than in the water. Right now I think the engine is mostly a loss (cases, crank, pistons, etc.). I would like the equivalent of a 'daily driver' with a nice top end. Do I need to stick with the 780 or upgrade? Tell me if these expectations are not reasonable. Any suggestions are appreciated.

    Btw the case was tied to the bench not the guy holding it lol

  5. #5
    She likes the bike. But the ski gets her wet!!!! xlint89's Avatar
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    If you want reliability, stock is the way to go. Maybe a jet pump and ride plate upgrade will yield you some more top speed. If that's the case, look into another 780 engine. The next option is to build the crap out of an engine, but reliabilty goes down and cost goes way up. Or you do a conversion ski with a different engine. But that will require alot of mods, time, and $$$$$.

  6. #6
    ph2ocraft's Avatar
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    I'd certainly do a rebuild but just make small performance improvements.
    Replace all fuel lines and go through the carbs
    Re-built crank
    Bore cylinders and larger pistons...same money just a little more power.
    Rec port if you want a little more oomph
    Some reed assemblies and call it good.

  7. #7
    She likes the bike. But the ski gets her wet!!!! xlint89's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ph2ocraft View Post
    I'd certainly do a rebuild but just make small performance improvements.
    Replace all fuel lines and go through the carbs
    Re-built crank
    Bore cylinders and larger pistons...same money just a little more power.
    Rec port if you want a little more oomph
    Some reed assemblies and call it good.
    I agree, however $$$$ is alot.

    Fuel lines $15
    Carb rebuilds X3 $120
    Rebuilt crank $400
    Bore cyls X3 $150
    Piston kit w/ gaskets $260
    Rec port $500
    Reeds $100

    $1045 without the port job
    $1165 without port and with high compression heads
    $1545 with port job
    $1665 with high compression heads too

  8. #8
    ph2ocraft's Avatar
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    Hmmnnn, good point. Ask Zig for a used 780??

  9. #9
    She likes the bike. But the ski gets her wet!!!! xlint89's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ph2ocraft View Post
    Hmmnnn, good point. Ask Zig for a used 780??
    My thoughts exactly. And part out what's good off of his to help absorb the cost of the new/used one.

  10. #10
    BBCaprice's Avatar
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    SLT 780

    Great boat. Handles well w/ a passenger and decent power stock although out classed speed wise by newer stuff. I love mine- some pics
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