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hello, Ive only owned outboard motor boats, my johnson 100…

hello, I've only owned outboard...
hello, I've only owned outboard motor boats, my johnson 100 hp just burned a piston and I
searched extensively for a used boat. found one that seems absolutely perfect for me... I mean perfect, except it has a mercruiser 470 i/o and that's new to me. went and checked
it out yesterday, started well, seemed to run well, rear end was rebuilt last year and the
trans shifted well. the engine looks like you can eat off of it. it's a 1983 four winns 18 ft with a really nice quality shorelander trailer. way nicer than my ez loader. I can get it for
1700, no less. gave him a 100 dollar deposit then he said I need to change the thermostat. I extensively questioned him and he finally said it overheated all of a sudden for the first time in the 20 years he's owned the boat. ugh. claims that this is all I have to fix, him and his family say the engine itself has never had any problems. now my stomach sinks. went home last night and started reading about all these cooling
nightmares with these engines. don't know if it has a 3 in or 4 in exchanger, sais the impeller was changed when the outdrive was rebuilt. this engine sounded strong and if
all is ok with this engine it will literally be like my dream boat. I like to fish with my friends
mostly on lakes with 10 mi shoreline but the boat I get needs to be able to handle lk st
clair on a calm day. this is the one. what do I do? We don't mind putting a little money
into it if it's fixable but I worry about the engine, ware and tear from overheating etc.
is the heat exchanger something I can change with moderate mechanic knowledge? is it probably deeper than just the thermostat? I have no money and am taking a loan to buy a boat with my friend so about 600 between the three of us is doable and I can't find anything like this for such an affordable price. and it looks good I'm tellin ya. ps I leave work in a half hr and need an answer by then. going to buy boat with cash tomorrow. at least that's the plan.
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Answered in 5 minutes by:
6/29/2010
Jeremy R.
Jeremy R., MarineTechnician
Category: Boat
Satisfied Customers: 9,020
Experience: Multiple factory certifications 20+ years of experience.
Verified
welcome, i would do a compression check to make sure, and check all fluids in outdrive and motor. then test drive it. also post the serial number. it could be an exhaust clog or thermostat or even just the impeller in the drive
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
Relist: Incomplete answer.
ok answer but that's nothing I didn't already know. I plan to check the compression. I'm wondering if it's a really good deal even if I have to put some money into it. or should I be paying way less?
Captain Dave
Captain Dave, Marine Mechanic
Category: Boat
Satisfied Customers: 3,847
Experience: USCG Licensed Captain, 20+ Years Boating, Fishing, Maintenance and Repair Experience
Verified
Hello. Jeremy was right on target - you just need to check the mechanical condition of the motor, and a compression check is the most important thing to check. The overheat could be a t-stat, or it could be the water pump (impeller) - they need to be serviced just like on an outboard. Or it could be even simpler - the water intake may have been blocked. There is no easy answer or shortcut; you just need to carefully examine the boat. Take it out and see if the overheat repeats - if not, it's probably not a problem and more likely just a temporary blockage. If the boat is what you want and the motor is is reasonably good shape, then the price sounds good, especially if you recognize the ALL boats will cost some time and/or money.
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
Ok, that settles me almost completely but two last things, When I called him back earlier today I questioned how hot it got, took about 4 tries and he said it got to 260 and stalled out. I questioned the stall and he sort of yelled "I shut it down caus I didn't want to hurt the motor"... Hmmm... Ok, and last thing I can't figure out is - If this hull is this nice for the age, and motor looks this good, and starts and runs, if the problem was as simple as a t stat, wouldn't anyone in their right mind fix the stupid problem so you could sell the dang thing? For way more at that? They said multiple times that these boats go for three to four grand "normally". If that's the case, even if it was the heat exchanger, wouldn't you put 6 or 700 into it and sell a badass boat for 3-4000 $?unless something was terminal in the engine?Although talking to this guy, I can tell he doesn't know shit about how to deal with people or how to "sell" something. I've sensed frustration with more questions. BotXXXXX XXXXXne tomorrow is check the compression and if it's good I'll probly take it, but what's your take on the vibe and also what compression should I be hopeing for? And if it is low in any cylinder should I bail and loose my hundred bucks? Or maybe try to get it for a steal? If so what would be fair? I know this makes for another answer but I need to know if the exchanger is something I can do myself in an evening or so without any special equipment. Thanks. This should wrap up my concerns. Last thing, again they don't seem cooperative with a test drive because "the tags are expired... Convenient. Is the compression the best answer I can get in a non test drive circumstance? If captian Dave is still on the clock I would love to accept this final answer if all points are covered. If not, anyone who answers these concerns will be accepted. Thank you all again.

I would not be particularly concerned about the seller's "manner" - different folks have different ways of dealing with situations. He may feel that you are asking a lot of questions about what (to him) is obvious. He may also just want to sell it without regard to repairs, and that may be why the price is low. In any case, I would rely on the objective facts that you can see. Definitely do the compression test - I would look for 100 psi minimum in each cylinder, with a variation of not more than 10-15% from highest to lowest. I don't like providing an eact number because gauges differ quite a bit, so I rely more on the difference. Beyond that, start the motor and listen to it - if something is wrong you can often hear it - a significant grind or tick can men bearing damage, for example. If it sounds good then move ahead. I would certainly want to do an on-water trial - nobody is going to fine you for expired registration when you are just testing. If that is a problem, at least run it on a hose and see what the temp does (but don't run it above fast idle on the hose). Note that if it was me I would not buy it without an actual trial on the water. If the temp stays normal then you probably have no immediate worries. If it goes up high then you'll need to make a decision about it. I can't tell you what a fair price would be, but the hull certainly has value and assuming the motor would just need repairs to the cooling system it may still be a reasonable investment. As for the exchanger, it should be a reasonable job to repair - it will come off with ordinary tools (remove the hoses, keeping track of what goes where) and then a few nuts/bolts hold it on), and often if that is the problem it can be repaired by an auto radiator shop.



Edited by Captain Dave on 6/29/2010 at 12:26 PM EST
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Hello. What have you found with this - are you moving ahead with the purchase?
Captain Dave
Captain Dave, Marine Mechanic
Category: Boat
Satisfied Customers: 3,847
Experience: USCG Licensed Captain, 20+ Years Boating, Fishing, Maintenance and Repair Experience
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