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illusion Tower Problem


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I was hoping to hear from a few Illusion Tower owners. The large allen bolts that pins the forward joint of the tower appeared loose. I had read on several posts that some BU owners has replaced bushings for their towers. In my mind I thought that would be my repair this spring. However, when I had a closer look today, ( me standing under and lifting it up and down and jiggling it), I noticed that the large allen bolts are moving. It appears that the holes have somehow worn out of round and lets that bolt move. Nothing to do with the bushings. Has anyone else had this problem. My dealer suggested to drill the base tower component and through bolt the pivot bolt. This is the very last thing I would want to do.

Any advise or fixes would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks

Rob

Edited by Smoke Eater
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Not exactly sure what the base of your particular tower looks like, but would be it be possible to get a larger bushing, and a larger bolt?

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The hole is a little oval or oblonged, so a larger new round bolt wouldn't fit. If I take the tower and tower base off, I might be able to machine a slightly large hole to mate up with a new larger round bolt, but the tower is powder coated black and I have been told that If I mess with it, it will all flake off. I'm not sure how to handle this problem.

post-15091-024196300 1300233780_thumb.jp

post-15091-013532700 1300233786_thumb.jp

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My is going on six years now and it worn also. The problem is the bolt is a harder metal then the tower and all the bouncing around of the tower on the water and during towing is just wearing out the tower fittings. The only real way to fix it is to drill out the tower bolt holes and install bushings.

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jkendallmsce

My is going on six years now and it worn also. The problem is the bolt is a harder metal then the tower and all the bouncing around of the tower on the water and during towing is just wearing out the tower fittings. The only real way to fix it is to drill out the tower bolt holes and install bushings.

I have the same tower. Have you talked to Malibu about the problem?? ANd have they come up with a fix?

Although the tower is nice looking, I have talked to Malibu about the tension on the cables when lowering the tower.

With 2 sets of speaker cans on the tower when removing the 2 pins, you have to have to be prepared or the tower would drop and break the windshield. Malibu has told me that there is no way to add either stiffer/stronger springs or additional springs to remedy the poor design.

Since I only have to lower the tower twice a year, it has not been a problem. But could see it as a real annoyance if I had to raise and lower the tower more often.

Surely Malibu with their inovative engineering tream can come up with a fix?? Blake at the TN plant may be a good place to start.

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I have no problems with mine and if i did and just let it drop it wouldnt hit the windshield. @JK What do you have it on that it hits the windshield?

smoke eater Whats wrong with drilling it out round again and installing a bushing?

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APWRX: It's not as simple as just drilling it out. I would have to take off the tower. Unbolt the lower section from the fiberglass gunnel. Take the lower section to a machinist so they could drill a hole perfectly centered with the other one only bigger and the while using a bit that had a flat bottom to create the shoulder the allan bolt needs to bottom out. There would also be a problem with the powder coat. If I get it drilled out the baked on paint will start to flake off aroung the new hole. If it gets realy bad I might have to do this, but it's not a simple job.

Rob

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jkendallmsce

I have no problems with mine and if i did and just let it drop it wouldnt hit the windshield. @JK What do you have it on that it hits the windshield?

smoke eater Whats wrong with drilling it out round again and installing a bushing?

If you let it drop, what stops it/is in the way??? the windshield is in the way!! as the only thing keeping the tower from arcing downward and smacking the windshield is the person(s) removing the pins. Maybe your springs are a tad better??

On my boat the speaker cans (2 pair) are in the way. And if there were no attachements (ie speaker cans or lights) when the tower is dropped it hits right in the middle of the center windshield that swings open to access the bow portion of the boat. Don't think I want that to get broken!!

Installing a bushing is what should have been done when the tower was designed and assembled. After the holes are worn so they are oval rather than round (see smoke eaters pic above), finding the center of the original hole is nearly impossible. And who has a lift/crane to lift the tower off the boat and a drill press to accurately drill the hole in the right location and aligned correctly? I would guess the tower weighs a good 150-200 #s??

Thats what is wrong with drilling it out round again!! Much easier said than done.

Edited by jkendallmsce
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I know yours hits the windshield.i was curious what boat it was on,dont know how you miss understood the question..Mine doesnt hit the windshield it rests on the dash as almost every other i have seen does.The boat is what i was curious about not the stuff on the tower.

smokeater: gotcha mine is powdercoated as well however i dont think it will be that big of a deal to round the hole its aluminum after all. i guess i'll tackle that when if i need to.good luck.

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If you can't find the right size bushing, you could consider using a sleeve on the bolt. Also, you could consider using a "shoulder bolt" with a larger diameter shoulder and the original thread size. If you are really daring, you could prop the tower up one side at a time and use a hand drill to make the new hole. I would use progressively larger drill bits until you reach the magic size.

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