NEW BOAT OWNER! so stoked but so much to learn

BluePabst

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jun 1, 2012
1,352
107
Somewhere between heaven and hell
Name
Phil
Boat
Bertram 30
Worry about the compression test first. You may have some tough decisions to make so first things first as j said.

ok so a full service will cost several hundred $. It depends really on the engine and how much stuff needs to be replaced. Here's a quick run down so you know what to expect: change all fluids, oil, trans, cooling; change / inspect spark plugs, wires, points / cap, change / inspect belts, change anodes, change filters, oil, fuel primary & secondary, change impeller. Some outdrive maintenance as well. Probably missing something but that's a start.

And if you get bored; start cleaning this thing top to bottom. Get everything out of the bilge. Everything. Make sure your bilge pumps and float switches work. Make sure your fuel lines are good. Check your blowers make sure they run nicely and move air. Replace any of this if there's any doubt. Get your ditch bag and safety gear in check as well. Flares, fire extinguishers, radio, hand held radio, pfds, signal mirror, whistle, etc...

good luck and let us know how the compression test goes.
 
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sickcat

Silverback
Aug 5, 2003
3,411
1,427
63
LA
Name
Kerry
Boat
Yellow spot
Where are you in Long Beach? Does your buddy know about boats? Going to Cat this weekend and I have been pretty busy but if we can set up a time to hook up next week or so I'll come by, take a look and get up headed in the right direction. PM me if you want to set something up.

As others have hinted at sounds like you may been in a little over your head.
 
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Envy115

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Aug 17, 2011
101
18
San Diego
Name
Tommy Chang
Boat
1989 Seaswirl
Going t
Tommy, Get a cool beverage of your choice, sit down and take a couple of deep breaths, and then read the rest of this post.



I don't want to scare you, but it sounds like you bought a boat on impulse that you know nothing about and have no idea what condition your new boat is in. Before you take it on the water again you need to do a few things to it so that it won't STALL ON THE WATER!!!!! That is one of the worst things to happen on a boat on the water, for any reason. The worst thing, of course, is sinking, but it sounds like that is not an issue right now. Get to know your boat inside and out. Every nut, bolt, screw, and part and you will be better off on the water when something goes wrong. If you own a boat, particularly an older one, you need to be a jack of all trades or have very deep pockets.

If you want to save money you are going to have to purchase several hundred dollars worth of tools and know how to use them properly, and not be afraid to tackle almost any repair that your boat needs. You don't have to buy all those tools at once, but as each issue comes up you will need new tools to do the job. The alternative is to pay somebody about $90 per hour to do the repairs for you. I have faith in your ability to do many repairs on your boat. For an occasional mechanic like yourself I would recommend that you buy most of your hand tools from Harbor Freight. Get on their mailing list and use coupons as much as you can. They are decent hand tools and lifetime guaranty, not the best but more than worth the cost. Power tools are a different story there. Buy them at your own risk.

To replace the impeller (water pump), Look on youtube for that repair for your particular outdrive. It will be necessary to remove 4-6 bolts on the lower end, disconnect the shifter rod, slide the lower end off the upper end, turn the lower end upside down, remove the 4 bolts holding the impeller housing on, remove the impeller, inspect the housing for wear and replace if necessary (just do it for peace of mind), and replace the impeller. Don't loose the keyway! Put everything back together.

To check compression-----No, the radiator pressure kit won't work.....at all. Buy a compression tester, disconnect all the spark plug wires and remove the spark plugs, carefully pull the wire out of the center of the coil and turn it to the side so the engine won't start, screw the compression tester into each spark plug hole one at a time, crank the engine 4-5 rotations with the starter, then read the pressure on the gauge. Release the pressure and do this 2 more times and write the number down each time. Repeat this procedure for each spark plug hole and write the numbers down. You are looking for 1) approximately even pressure in all cylinders, and 2) at least 90 lbs., possibly up to 150 lbs in each cylinder (the higher the better). If one or more cylinders has a significantly low reading you have an internal problem with your engine, either rings or valves (read new engine here). If everything checks out OK then you are good to go.

To replace the risers, drain all water from the engine, remove the water jacket at the back end of the risers, unbolt the risers, scrape off the old gasket, install new gasket and new risers, replace water jacket, fill cooling system with proper fluids. I have simplified this process somewhat, but all gasoline engines are basically the same.

Good luck, and don't get overwhelmed. One problem at a time and pretty soon you will have a very dependable and functional boat.
Going to do work on the boat today. Will let u know how it turns out. Hopefully compression will be good
 

Envy115

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Aug 17, 2011
101
18
San Diego
Name
Tommy Chang
Boat
1989 Seaswirl
Where are you in Long Beach? Does your buddy know about boats? Going to Cat this weekend and I have been pretty busy but if we can set up a time to hook up next week or so I'll come by, take a look and get up headed in the right direction. PM me if you want to set something up.

As others have hinted at sounds like you may been in a little over your head.
Thanks for the replies guys. The boat is currently In Pasadena but will take it to long Beach soon. If you could take a look at the engine I would be so greatful! You went to cat this weekend ? Hopefully the times will work out and can set something up. Are you busy Monday or Tuesday ? Tyvm
 

Envy115

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Aug 17, 2011
101
18
San Diego
Name
Tommy Chang
Boat
1989 Seaswirl
Like Randy and Bill said, Vessel Assist and a good mechanic now!
Does it have a temp gage? Take notes on the gages with it running in your driveway hooked to a water source. As the temp rises, does the oil pressure drop? Remove the oil filler cap and inspect the inside of it, remove the dipstick, any odd color oil?(white)...
the oil is good, i checked the dipstick and it looks clean, not white or any other bad colors. im going to do the impeller right now, and see what happens, hopefully but im going to see right now. it has a temp gauage and tho it goes to like halfway. it does not go beyond that. so i dont know how bad the overheat actually is.
 

Envy115

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Aug 17, 2011
101
18
San Diego
Name
Tommy Chang
Boat
1989 Seaswirl
i'm in hemet and have the ultimate set of tools!!! if you want you can use my tools, leave the boat here (fully fenced 5 acres) while you work on it. i'm busy with my own work but i can tell you what to do and how to do it. what engine and drive by the way? let me know.
Omc engine. V6 engine . I'm trying to find my Impeller. Can somebody verify where it is
 

Envy115

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Aug 17, 2011
101
18
San Diego
Name
Tommy Chang
Boat
1989 Seaswirl
This is a picture of my engine. Can somebody please please verify where my impeller is. I'm about to check on it and want to be sure. I'm a noob. But watching youtube. And trying to learn. Please help

1407030126396.jpg
 

J Woodman

I know nothing
Dec 8, 2006
945
485
Ventura
Name
Jeff
Boat
15' Gregor Baja Special "Silver Bullet II"
Before you randomly look for parts that may or may not be on your boat, do yourself a favor and get repair manuals for your particular engine and outdrive.

That motor obviously has a water pump for the fresh water system but it won't help you to replace an impeller, which pumps raw or salt water. Impellers are always located on the bottom end of the outdrive or outboard engine.

If someone knowlegable was there with you they could point out the various parts of your boat, but without that you really need to find a good mechanic.

Having said all that, your motor looks pretty clean. That is often an indication of good maintenance.
 
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Raimond

Not as lean, not as mean, still a Marine...
Mar 9, 2014
2,037
874
SoCal
Name
Ray
Boat
23' IMP Hardtop - "4 Reel"
Your hand is on the Upper outdrive, the water muffs are on the Lower outdrive. You must separate these two to get to the impeller...
 
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kindafishy

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jul 21, 2010
4,256
1,997
hemet/ca/riverside
Name
SCOTT
Boat
bayliner cierra express 2452 "RYLEE'S WAVE RYDER"
stop!!!! get a manual! the omc impellers are in the lower drive, you must separate upper and lower. omcs can be very hard to find parts for and finicky to put back together correctly. if you do not have a friend that has done it before to help, bite the bullet and take it to a shop. i've done my old omc years ago, but would not attempt with out a manual, and a good assortment of tools. if i remember correctly theres a tube inside that raw water flows thru that is notorious for leaking internal. GET A MANUAL!
 
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Envy115

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Aug 17, 2011
101
18
San Diego
Name
Tommy Chang
Boat
1989 Seaswirl
Ok. So no way. Without the manual huh. Thanks guys for all the input and help.
 

Envy115

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Aug 17, 2011
101
18
San Diego
Name
Tommy Chang
Boat
1989 Seaswirl
I want to start by thanking everybody for the feedback, especially you veteran boating guys out there that give youngsters like me knowledgeable information and advice, and I wanted to say thank you. I have decided to take the boat to long beach within the marina and maybe get it checked out by a mechanic. I really need somebody to take a look at it and give me feedback on what work can be done on the engine, or even on overall assessment of the engine I would be very grateful. I'm thinking about taking it in the morning, and if any chance in hell, anybody can help me take a look before I take it to the actual mechanic, so that you can save me some money I would be very grateful. If you could come meet me, I bring the beer, and I bring the food. Don't need like an immense amount of work from somebody, but just boating enthusiasts that might have time to help a younger and brand new boat owner. I just really want some kind of heads up so I don't get into the mechanic and get raped and pillaged for being a noobie. If anybody sees this and thinks that they can help please write or pm me to set something up. At this rate, I just want to know about my impeller, maybe help with an impeller change, or to take a look at my pumps, air flow, fuel flow. PLEASE!!! and I'll bring goodies to help the morning go by. =) Thank you and god speed.

-excited new boat owner, that might have bit off more than he can chew.

THANK YOU!
 

Steveo77

Steveo77
Apr 22, 2012
1,092
993
Rancho Cucamonga CA
Name
Steve
Boat
Grumpy
Hey dude, I got my first boat 2 years ago and I'm learning myself. The way I look at it is jump in with both feet! I've learned a lot and still have a ton to learn. I do all the work myself, via manuals, internet, and when I buy parts, I ask a lot of questions. But I haven't done anything major, like an overhaul. Common sense says you wanna know your boat so u can trouble shoot on the water if something ain't right. The BD community has supplied tons of helpful info, and there is lifetimes of experience on this forum. I've posted questions on here and got great response. And GET VESSEL ASSIST!
B -bend
O -over
A -and
T -take it
 

Raimond

Not as lean, not as mean, still a Marine...
Mar 9, 2014
2,037
874
SoCal
Name
Ray
Boat
23' IMP Hardtop - "4 Reel"
B Bust
O Out
A Another
T Thousand...
 

kindafishy

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jul 21, 2010
4,256
1,997
hemet/ca/riverside
Name
SCOTT
Boat
bayliner cierra express 2452 "RYLEE'S WAVE RYDER"
I want to start by thanking everybody for the feedback, especially you veteran boating guys out there that give youngsters like me knowledgeable information and advice, and I wanted to say thank you. I have decided to take the boat to long beach within the marina and maybe get it checked out by a mechanic. I really need somebody to take a look at it and give me feedback on what work can be done on the engine, or even on overall assessment of the engine I would be very grateful. I'm thinking about taking it in the morning, and if any chance in hell, anybody can help me take a look before I take it to the actual mechanic, so that you can save me some money I would be very grateful. If you could come meet me, I bring the beer, and I bring the food. Don't need like an immense amount of work from somebody, but just boating enthusiasts that might have time to help a younger and brand new boat owner. I just really want some kind of heads up so I don't get into the mechanic and get raped and pillaged for being a noobie. If anybody sees this and thinks that they can help please write or pm me to set something up. At this rate, I just want to know about my impeller, maybe help with an impeller change, or to take a look at my pumps, air flow, fuel flow. PLEASE!!! and I'll bring goodies to help the morning go by. =) Thank you and god speed.

-excited new boat owner, that might have bit off more than he can chew.

THANK YOU!
my offer still stands....bring it out and i'll help you out. manual is a must though for any maintenance work like impeller change.
 

Envy115

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Aug 17, 2011
101
18
San Diego
Name
Tommy Chang
Boat
1989 Seaswirl
to everybody who had replied to me at some point in time, i have a sad update. i am pretty bummed out.
Everybody said dont work on it, unless I have the manual or some help, so I decided not to work on it. Just did the basic stuff I could change spark plugs and other small stuff that was easy. The boat revs very well in neutral and reverse, but when it was in drive, the RPM would go above 2 and the engine would cut out. I was sad and wasn't sure what it was and decided to take it into a boat mechanic in pasadena. BAD MOVE, jerk of a guy charged me $180 to look at it, and if i didnt fix it from him then I would have to pay the $180... mind you i just finished college and dont hve a job. tryingto hold out until atleast fishing is over this year. He said that it has a bad shift cable. He said he will charge me 800$ for him to change that... =T Seemed like alot to me and me and my friend were thinking of just buying the manuals and trying it ourselves, my buddy is a car mechanic of sorts but doesn't have much experience with boat engines. To make it short, he wants 800 to fix, and like 180 for the part. I have a 1984 sea swirl, sierra cuddy. It has a 3.8 l V6 OMC engine. and now I have to find a new shift cable and a way to replace it. I can't afford to pay 1000 to fix that when my boat is only worth like 3-4k. OH GODDDDDD! what am I to do. pretty bummed out. Anybody know where to find a cheap shift cable? anybody changed it before? is it a difficult thing to do? if I have the manuals can I do it myself with my buddy? DOES ANYBODY WANT TO HELP ME out of the goodness of their heart and maybe a good dinner and beer? advice? ANYTHING? pretty heart broken and sad guys. Anything will help. encouraging words? lol or any advice or hookups of any kind to get this thing going before this season is over relatively cheap? MAN i know i made the mistake of going in over my head but that guy at pasadena, 180 to look at it.. and if i take it out and dont get it fixed. there goes 180$. dfashjklsdfhkjdasf. UGH. its my fault in the end i know but im young and i will learn. anything will help. THANKS EVERYBODY.. i mean it.

- one sad guy with his first boat thats having problems.
 

Raimond

Not as lean, not as mean, still a Marine...
Mar 9, 2014
2,037
874
SoCal
Name
Ray
Boat
23' IMP Hardtop - "4 Reel"
First off, just because he said you need one does not mean you need one. Some people just tell a customer they need an part replaced to get the business. Its at most a one day job so $800 is way too much...
Like you said, people recommended you get the manual...
Order the manual before you take another step. No matter who comes to assist you, they will want the manual on hand...
 
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kindafishy

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jul 21, 2010
4,256
1,997
hemet/ca/riverside
Name
SCOTT
Boat
bayliner cierra express 2452 "RYLEE'S WAVE RYDER"
IN CAPS NOW.....MY OFFER STILL STANDS, HAVE TOOLS, HAVE A SHOP, FULLY FENCED PROPERTY. I 'M NOT GOING TO DO THE WORK FOR YOU BUT WILL ASSIST. AND YES YOU WILL NEED A MANUAL.
 

historic

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Oct 29, 2003
332
124
3 Rivers
Name
Jack
Boat
2459 Trophy "Driftwood"
to everybody who had replied to me at some point in time, i have a sad update. i am pretty bummed out.
Everybody said dont work on it, unless I have the manual or some help, so I decided not to work on it. Just did the basic stuff I could change spark plugs and other small stuff that was easy. The boat revs very well in neutral and reverse, but when it was in drive, the RPM would go above 2 and the engine would cut out. I was sad and wasn't sure what it was and decided to take it into a boat mechanic in pasadena. BAD MOVE, jerk of a guy charged me $180 to look at it, and if i didnt fix it from him then I would have to pay the $180... mind you i just finished college and dont hve a job. tryingto hold out until atleast fishing is over this year. He said that it has a bad shift cable. He said he will charge me 800$ for him to change that... =T Seemed like alot to me and me and my friend were thinking of just buying the manuals and trying it ourselves, my buddy is a car mechanic of sorts but doesn't have much experience with boat engines. To make it short, he wants 800 to fix, and like 180 for the part. I have a 1984 sea swirl, sierra cuddy. It has a 3.8 l V6 OMC engine. and now I have to find a new shift cable and a way to replace it. I can't afford to pay 1000 to fix that when my boat is only worth like 3-4k. OH GODDDDDD! what am I to do. pretty bummed out. Anybody know where to find a cheap shift cable? anybody changed it before? is it a difficult thing to do? if I have the manuals can I do it myself with my buddy? DOES ANYBODY WANT TO HELP ME out of the goodness of their heart and maybe a good dinner and beer? advice? ANYTHING? pretty heart broken and sad guys. Anything will help. encouraging words? lol or any advice or hookups of any kind to get this thing going before this season is over relatively cheap? MAN i know i made the mistake of going in over my head but that guy at pasadena, 180 to look at it.. and if i take it out and dont get it fixed. there goes 180$. dfashjklsdfhkjdasf. UGH. its my fault in the end i know but im young and i will learn. anything will help. THANKS EVERYBODY.. i mean it.

- one sad guy with his first boat thats having problems.
What kind of outdrive? If it is an OMC cobra, there are two grease fittings on the right side of the drive. The one farthest away from the boat is the shift linkage. Give it 3-4 shots of waterproof grease and your shifting problem could be over. The other fitting is for the gimbal bearing, give it 2-3 shots while you have the grease gun out. You could be pleasantly surprised!

If you want to check the lower shift cable, disconnect it from the engine and work it by hand to see how it shifts. You can put some light weight oil in the cable to loosen it up if necessary.

You must get a manual and you should take kinda fishy up on his awesome offer. I bought a new shift cable online for my OMC for about $80 delivered.

Sounds like you ignition interrupter is causing the engine to cut out because it can't shift into forward gear. It is supposed to do that momentarily while the gears shift, if they can't shift, the motor runs really rough.

Get the book and read it, the OMC manuals are great, complete explanation of the systems, trouble shooting, adjustments, maintenance and complete overhauls.

Good luck! It's not that hard if you understand the system and manual!
 
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historic

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Oct 29, 2003
332
124
3 Rivers
Name
Jack
Boat
2459 Trophy "Driftwood"
Here is a used shop manual $35 delivered:
 

Minions

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Oct 11, 2012
214
44
Murrieta, CA
Name
Daniel
Boat
Minion
Sell the boat! Be open about what it needs. If you're freaking about a shift cable then you're in for a whole lot of pain if you keep the boat.
 
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wils

lazy-ass well known "member"
May 31, 2003
9,072
5,450
not a spoiled bitch from san diego
Name
bill
Boat
I hate boats
Sell the boat! Be open about what it needs. If you're freaking about a shift cable then you're in for a whole lot of pain if you keep the boat.
^^^right here^^^

What college did you graduate from and what did they teach you?
You have no job yet you bought a boat that you know nothing about and needs THOUSANDS of dollars of repairs....and hours of internet time without learning anything new.
The fee for looking at your boat is a common practice in many industries today.

BTW and before trailering from Pasadena to long beach.......how are the wheel bearings on your trailer?
 
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