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  1. #1

    97 GTX piston shredded - suggestions wanted

    I have a 97 GTX with the stock 787 engine that just failed on me. The PTO side piston started coming apart at the top lip just above the rings. I shut the ski down and let the wind take me to shore but the dome on that side is beat up and there is some really fine scoring in the cylinder wall. When I got the ski home I took the plugs out and turned the engine over to see if there was compression and to listen for noise. When I pulled the head I noticed that the good piston had oil on it from the cranking without spark but the shredded one didn't so I suspect the oil injector on that side is clogged.

    The engine has 70 hours on it lifetime. I don't use the ski very much and it sat in storage for about 5 years. I last used it in september 07.

    I am trying to decide on buying a rebuilt engine or rebuilding the top end of this one. I know I should also rebuild the carbs and will need to replace oil and fuel lines as they are original.

    I did try and crank the engine after it shut down but only let it run for about ten seconds as I could tell it was running on one cylinder. My concern is metal in the crankcase. There really aren't any small filiings in the cylinder, just big chunks. I didn't notice any metal in the oil that came out of the engine when I pulled it out. How bad is the risk that metal shards are in my crankcase bearings and will destroy things once I rebuild the top end?

    Is an aftermarket performance head something I should look at or am I going to stress the 11 year old crank too much?

    Any suggestions or input is welcome.


  2. #2
    Tool Bag water worx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Sunny Fla
    I have a really nice 800 for sale,motor was torn down inspected & resealed with new crank seals & gaskets also fresh top end with ProX pistons. $1100 LMK if interested. No core required.

  3. #3
    Thanks but I'm short on cash and can't afford a replacement engine. I think I'll try the top-end rebuild. I pulled the jugs and there doesn't appear to be any debris in the crank. The dome is pitted and has some piston ring bits stuck in it. Can I just grind those down and re-use the dome or do I need a new one? How critical is the smoothness of the dome?

  4. #4
    Tool Bag water worx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Sunny Fla
    Just clean up any sharp edges & it will be fine.

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