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Just Bought a Wetbike - Now What ? 

Estimated Time, Parts Needed, Tools Needed, Step-By-Step

Topic:                           Now What? This is what you should do. If you do this, then you will have years of troublefree operation. 

Expertise Required:      Newbie - here's some pics of what this looks like

Estimated Time:            A weekend just to be safe. Here's the overview:

      • Clean out fuel tank and replace pickup tube (requires engine removal)
      • Engine tuneup and maintenance
      • Re-glue ski and change gear oil
      • Service the front end bushings and/or steering column bushings
      • Re-Seal both front and rear skis


Parts Needed:               This depends on the condition of the bike. So, plan on the following worst case:

      • Spark Plugs (2) - NGK BR8HS
      • See-Through Fuel Filter like this one
      • Primer bulb like this one
      • Electrical - Fuse Holder (if yours is extremely corroded)
      • Fuel Hose - preferably the USCG rated line
      • Fuel Pickup Tube - Tygon fuel line to make a new one
      • Fuel Line Weight/Strainer - easier than cleaning up a nasty one
      • Fuel Tank Straps - if needed
      • Gaskets - Engine to Pump, carburetor, and dialect shield gaskets "may" be needed (use old ones if they're OK)
      • New Grips (if needed)
      • New Bilge Pump (if needed)
      • Fuses - 20amp and 2 amp
      • Front End - may need bushings, sleeves or H-Beams. Close inspection will tell
      • Front Bumper Kit (optional)

Tools Needed:               Assuming you will be doing the entire operation, plan on using the following:

      • Metric Wrench Set - 10, 12, 14, 17mm - and maybe 11 and 13mm if someone used non JIS-specific fasteners
      • Screwdrivers - philips and flatblade in various sizes
      • Electric screwdriver - will make your life much easier
      • Siphon hose and Fuel Tank - to take old nasty fuel to recycler
      • Carburetor Cleaner - Berryman's B12 works great for me
      • Dialectic Grease - little dab for electrical connections - and - spark plug boots
      • Hand Impact - needed if you disassemble starter or remove flywheel
      • 2-Stroke Engine Fogging Oil

Step-By-Step:               We're gonna jump in here - don't be afraid:

      • Disconnect the battery - and remove if possible (50hp might be difficult)
      • Pull the motor - see the steps here
      • Pull the fuel tank
      • Fuel Tank - Clean it out - see the steps here
      • Front End - Remove the steering crown and slide front end out of hull - then service/replace bushings. Also service the front end bushings and swing arms if needed - see steps here
      • Install New Front Bumper Kit (optional) - see steps here
      • Hull - Clean out the inside of the hull.
        • If you have a bike with the black closed-cell foam you might consider removing it. It has a habit of coming apart and ending up in the air intake - and the motor). If yours is dry-rotted and flaky, pull it.
        • It's a good time to pull the hull seal and clean it up. DO NOT USE GLUE to put it back on. If anything, add a bit of grease to re-hydrate it a bit.
        • Replace the air vent tubes if you need to - one short and one long. Remove the blower fan if you have one and discard.
        • Replace the fuel tank straps if they're in bad shape
        • Give the inside of the hull a good cleaning with your favorite degreaser. I like the "Ol 99" stuff myself (industrial red-soap degreaser)
        • Flip hull over (or roll it onto it's side) so that you can give the lower hull fitting a close inspection. If it's cracked, then you'll need to replace it. Can be done later, but now's a good time.
        • Fiberglass or Metton hull repairs - unless there's major damage, that can be done later. As long as it's watertight and structurally sound, run it.
      • Engine - start by inspecting everything and taking note of what needs to be done. Expect a few surprises here or there too.
        • First things first - pull the plugs and spin motor over by hand. If you feel any crunchy-ness or binding, then you might need to tear it down for inspection. If it feels smooth, spray some fogging oil into the cylinders and spin by hand a bit. Install new spark plugs (gapped to .025 in)
        • Look closely at electrical plug. If you see any really broken or badly corroded pins, then replace the wiring harnesses. That sounds drastic, but electrical issues will turn your hair grey. If they aren't too bad, clean them up as best as you can and put a dab of dialectic grease on the.
        • Next remove fuel lines and then the carburetors (be careful they may have fuel in them). Drain fuel into drain pan and get ready to clean them.
        • Carbs - pull them apart and clean. Here's how
        • Remove fuel pump and clean it out - being very careful not to break it (if you have a 60hp with nylon pump body).
        • Replace fuel lines - and use quality Stainless Steel Clamps, not zip-ties.
        • Pull all ground connections and wire-brush them clean. You'll find one on the coil mount, on the left side of the motor holding the electrics on and one inside the box on 60hp motors. If some of the wires are broken at the eye, cut the eye off and solder on another one.
      • Slide air vent hoses out of the way and slip gas tank back in and strap down.
        • Install the fuel hose/cap assembly too.
      • If your battery tray (50hp bikes) needs some work, now's the time.
      • Front End - slide it back under bike and tighten down the crown bolts enough to hold it snug. You'll need to adjust the steering once you get to the water.
      • Slide pump/ski assembly back under bike.
        • Make sure you have the alignment knocks in place.
        • Put on new gasket if needed
      • Install motor (on 50hp bikes you might want to put battery in first). Remember to stop halfway down and install throttle cable.
      • Tighten everything up, put some fuel in it, and pump that primer bulb until the carb floats are full. 
      • Reconnect battery cables - after you wire brush them clean.

Now it's ready to start and run for years.




Copyright 2012 Capt'n Obveeus

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