Mclovin's post about the jon boat got me to thinking about my boat this weekend. Last weekend I went to take out and started the engine, but no water was coming out..from anywhere, or really even going in. I checked the normal stuff..is the water connection on, is the tell tale "pisser" clogged up, or even is the thermostat blocked. It was none of that.
I'm meticulous about flushing this thing out and always checking the water pressure etc. It's never run hot..or even warm. I've read that outboard engines need water to keep them cool, and I guess that's true. But srsly...I have no idea what happened here. I've changed out dozens of impellers and water pumps over the years on outboards of all sizes and brands, and NEVER seen anything like this. The mechanic where I bought the boat suggested that maybe a plastic bag got caught around the water pickups long enough to run it hot and fell off before I saw it. I'm going with that theory. Weirdly, it worked fine last year before I put it up in December.
The engine has a little less than 200 hours (189.6 to be exact) on it, and I've never changed the impeller. I figured I'd do it this summer as a maintenance , when I got around to it. Well, that time necessarily came sooner than I thought it would. I took it all apart Monday and found...this.
That melted, black impeller spins (or it did for a while) in the stainless steel cup, and that sits in the white housing. The cup is held in place by two tabs that lock it in the housing.
The impeller apparently got so hot it glued itself to that stainless cup and then ended up spinning the stainless cup in the white housing. So much so, that the washer there you see on the top of the stainless cup got hot enough to weld itself to the stainless cup. That impeller/cup assembly spun enough that it almost bored through the white plastic housing. You can see the destruction on it as well.
Inside of the the stainless cup is filled with melted impeller, "gooed" to the stainless. You can also see the stainless washer that welded itself to the cup.
What a mess. I put an entire water pump assembly in it, all new washers and attachments, greased it all up, changed the engine oil and lower unit oil, and put it all back together. I hope to see if it works this weekends.
Just bigger parts; lower unit would be a little heavier. The last water pump I changed was on my Yamaha F250 on my Grady. It was MUCH heavier than my current F200.
Boat mechanics are pretty notorious about leaving the boat a mess. You'd think they'd care enough to not do that...but they don't. The last time I had to get work done on my boat by a mechanic they had to remove the lower unit (to replace the motor mounts) and left all of the bolts on the lower unit loose. Like finger tight loose. I found that at the sand bar leaning up against the engine and notice one of the bolts about to all out. And these were the good mechanics in town.
$2K isn't bad for new hydraulic steering. Parts were probably in the $1500 range, and they had to take out your old steering cable and helm, and install the new stuff, then bleed it.
I found another guy over in Anderson who says he will turn a boat around in a week as long as he can get parts. Haven't given him a shot yet, but I think I will in August or so when I service my outdrive. He does a lot of rigging and electrical work for a larger shop so I think he should be OK but I have learned to never get my hopes up about marine mechanics.
But he wants you to leave your boat up at his shop for 3-5 weeks and it's a deal killer for me. I think he's always swamped too, November, December, January....Still a couple of week wait.
The guy I'm talking about is at CC Marine, I think he's technically independent but his shop is over there. You can also go see all the cool Bertrams/Formulas/Makos Charlie is restoring. I've got the guys number if you're ever intradested
with their weekends/summers. Really in the grand scheme of things as long as you're not a negligent moron maintenance isn't terrible. Something will pop up from time to time, but the hours/days of enjoyment we get out of it more than make up for any issues.
I'll prob go outboard for the next one, but I do love the look and lines of an i/o boat.
But I know what you mean. My wife's cousin and her now ex husband bought like a 1992 Maxum i/o, the floor was rotted and the engine looked like it was out of an old pre WWII tractor or something. Just a bunch of rust and random wires. Of course they took it out a handful of times and had issues so now all boat suck and it's been sitting in a field for a few years now.
I'd say someone started the engine while the foot was out of the water. I had a buddy who worked on his engine in his garage. Just a tuneup but it doesn't take long to melt rubber. I mean, a pair of water ears are cheap.
Because I've never done that. And noone else operate my boat.
But that was more than just a start up. I've seen impellers crack a little from no water, even lose an impeller vane, but there was a lot of heat generated there. Look at the wallowed out hole on the stainless cup or the welded stainless washer. That doesn't happen quickly.