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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I apologize in advance for the long post, but I'm in a bind with my new boat and the manufacturer has me pretty irritated.

After having bought my new to me jet boat at the end of the fall last season and using it a few times, I've begun to catch up on all of the maintenance on the motor. The motor is an 07 Yamaha F90, with a jet drive made by Specialty Mfg. I quickly figured out that every pin, bolt, and whatever else is supposed to come apart is seized bad. First the impeller, which was the first step to getting the jet apart was seized enough that I had to totally drill out the key holding it to the shaft, and luckily was able to find the right size gear puller and with a little heat and persuasion over multiple days was able to free it. I should also mention that to get the impeller retaining nut off took an impact wrench, it's supposed to just be snug. Once that was out, I had to remove the bolts holding the jet assembly or what would be lower unit on, all of which took a days worth of soaking with PB Blaster and rocking the bolts back and forth to break up the oxidation, getting a little more movement every time. Once that was off, I tried to pull off the four bolts holding the water pump housing assembly off, all of which, unbelievably, were seized. I used the same technique, PB blaster, time, and slowly rocking the bolts back and forth, but snapped two right at the threads. I should also mention that on the jet intake itself, one of the pins that retains the grates is totally seized in, I ruined a punch trying to remove it after soaking it for a week and applying heat.
Now the boat had been used in the salt, but had been trailered, and I know it was flushed afterwards as it was a friend who owned it before me, and I was very much involved in what happened with the boat since it was new. Out of curiosity I tried to remove the nut retaining the steering cable to the outboard, knowing that these typically seize up pretty quickly. It came right off without too much hassle.

So after all this frustration I called the manufacturer thinking that there's got to be something wrong with this thing. Maybe they forgot to put some kind of corrosion inhibitor on it or something. The motor is still under warranty I should mention. Well, they pretty much told me tough luck. I spoke with the production manager, and was told that that's what happens when used in the salt. But nowhere in the owners manual does it say not to use the thing in the salt. He said we recommend to people who use them in the salt that they tear the unit down once a year and anti-seize everything. I asked him why they didn't just use anti-seize at the factory, to which I got no answer.

He gave me the option of sending the unit out to California on my dime and paying them to drill out the snapped bolts and put in helicoils. As for the $300 intake, he told me I should pretty much just buy a new one.

So am I crazy to think that this is an unacceptable business practice? I'm pretty angry that after only 4 seasons of use (3 really it sat for a year) the whole jet drive would be corroded to hell. When I find the time I'll be trying to take this up with Yamaha as there's still a year of warranty left on it, but I have the feeling since it's not their part, they won't want to deal with it.
 

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See, what alot don't understand is the fact that while an engine is being used in saltwater....saltwater is being forced into the bolt threads. Flushing off surface salt is usless.

Bolts/screws need to be sealed from saltwater. I use OMC/Bomb gasket sealer. It's nothing but soybean oil and glue mixed together. It sets up like chewing gum, but a little stiffer. Stays where you put it and it will seal screw and bolt threads if you dip them in it before you install.

Japanesse bolts are made different than the way we make them here. The shoulder under the head of a jap bolt is the same size as the bottom of each thread. The shoulder under the head to start of the thread leaves a pocket for salt build and harden in. A USA bolt that shoulder it the same dia as the top of each thread. This leaves no pocket for salt to build in. Then add to that Japanesse Stainless is a little tougher than warm butter compared to USA stainless.

The bottom line is still to seal the bolt threads from saltwater. 5200 is another material you can use to seal bolt threads.
 

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This is why if I was to buy a jet drive I would only buy a Mercury. they are the only manufacturer that makes their own jet drive where all the other companies use aftermarket jets. This would definately prevent some of the problems you are having with the manufacturer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I had thought that even Mercs used the jets made by Specialty. I've definitely seen Merc outboards with their jet lower units.

The thing that gets me is that this isn't a new company or anything, they've been around a while and are based in California, it's not like I'm calling India for technical support.
 
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