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mwfillmore

2009 Malibu Response LXI Info

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mwfillmore

Hey all,

I've been lurking for awhile. I think this is my first post. Anyway, i've been an inboard ski boat owner for a long time (of another brand that starts with M). I've got 2 young kids and have got a deposit on a 09 Response LXI. I've read about the chrome plating and what not being an issue on this year. Is there anything else i should be looking for or worried about?

How do the interiors hold up?

Any known engine issues?

Also, if anyone is in California, or near it. Eventually i may want to trade the tandem axle trailer for a single, if anyone is interested.... I know typically most people prefer the tandem, but I have some challenging constraints at my house, the single would be much nicer to park by hand.

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Wayne

I have a 2009 RLXI that I took delivery on in April 2009. Mine was garage kept until 2014 when it started living on a covered boat lift for the summers.

My chrome has help up well but I polish it regularly through the season along with the rest of the boat.

Since my interior gets minimal sun exposure it has held up very well but use 303 at least once a season (usually at the start or end). There are a couple of spots on the rear seat that developed a smal crack. If you look at the rear seat, the back kind of wraps around the rear of the boat. Below the speakers there are "points" where Malibu terminates the rear seat at the floor. The very tip of these points developed a 1/4" split but it hasn't grown since I first noticed them. I think they wrapped the vinyl tightly around these points and over time the natural shrinking of the material caused it to split. I also had the rear seat base split open from a misplaced step from some one. It was at a seam where two pieces are sewn together with a piping strip. I think they twisted their foot and it popped the seam. It was an easy fix for a vinyl shop and they thought the original stitch line was too close to the edge to begin with.

The powertrain has been fine but I usually don't break 40 hours in a season and change the oil at the end of every season. I still have the original fluid in the transmission (it's not showing signs of moisture or degradation so why change it, also since I'm an engineer working on transmissions as a career I have a different mind set about them than most).

I have the Monsoon 350 engine and run mid grade fuel, the only issue I have noticed is the engine does not like stabilizer. The exhaust will "smell funny" and the engine will develop a hesitation if I use StaBil so I don't use it anymore. I just run the tank low at the end of the season and fill with fresh at the start of a new season.

I would have your shaft alignment checked. Malibu decided to eliminate the locking nuts on the engine mounts and use star washers. I had mine loosen and its best to have a full alignment done if they ever loosen.

On the electrical side the MUX control panels can flake out. My issues have been isolated to just a loose connection that was easily fixed by tightening the female pins in the connector. I also had the electronic center display on the dash replaced. The original one decided to display everything in an upside down mirror image, a new one fixed the issue.

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mwfillmore

Awesome information. Thank you. Any other response owners want to chime in, that'd be grand. The RLXI i'm going to see is about 500 hrs. I find it interesting that it doesn't like fuel stabilizer. Did you try any other ones besides StaBil?

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Wayne

I've only used StaBil. I started using the regular version at the end of the season. So my initial tank of gas the next season the engine always had a hesitation on fast throttle opening. Then the subsequent tanks were regular fuel and the issue would go away.

Then with the ethanol panic I started adding the marine version to every tank (since it has an ethanol stabilizer) but the hesitation was constant and noticed the funny exhaust smell one day when I had the boat idling on the boat lift (the raw water pick up was submerged so I had cooling water). For some reason I stopped using it or ran out and got some straight gas in and both the smell and hesitation went away. Since we live in a lake I never fill the tank more than half and run it low at the end of the season. Then when I de-winterize I just fill up with fresh gas. This cured all the hesitation and exhaust smell issues so I stick with it and don't worry about ethanol.

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Slayer

Great boat with a solid powertrain.

Wayne....have you tried Startron?? I run it in every tank with no issues. Could your issues have something to do with the cats??

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Wayne

I have not tried startron and don't plan on it since I got to the bottom of my issue. My engine does have cats but I don't think that's the issue. I would be more apt to blame the ECM calibration. I've seen similar issues in the automotive development world. Since using no stabilizer works fine I might as well save the money for something else (not that it's too expensive).

I actually prefer the cat Monsoon engine. It runs fine for me, there were issues on the earlier years but those were all addressed by the 2008 model year. With out the stabilizer the exhaust fumes have no odor (I'm sure there is still CO there). My 2002 boat with the non-cat Monsoon would suffocate me. I put my ski on while the boat is idling out of the canal. With my old boat I would pass out if I tried that.

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foiler1

Great boat with a solid powertrain.

Wayne....have you tried Startron?? I run it in every tank with no issues. Could your issues have something to do with the cats??

I use startron in everything i own except my cars. I keep the bottle in the truck so when i am at the gas station, i just drop a couple ounces in. Forget to put it in for my sons ATV last year, Come spring, it wouldnt start. Had to pull and clean the carb

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Woodski

@mwfillmore: A friend has the Malibu speed control system on his boat, has some issues with it particularly in turns (there are a couple of threads on this site discussing it). Hopefully, the boat you are looking at has either ZO or Perfect Pass which are the industry standards. LXI has great wakes, a family on our lake has one and the boat serves them very well, very roomy for a 20' OB ski boat. You will want to learn how to cross back over your wake and how to approach waves / rough water as it is relatively easy to swamp the nose (threads also on this site discussing the issue). What specific model/year brand M boat are you graduating from? What are your high priority activities?

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mwfillmore

@Woodski thanks for the info. This boat has zero off, so I should be good there. I'm a 3 event skier that skis 75% of the time free skiing on a public lake 5 miles from the house and I hope to get a membership at a private lake for the weekends. My priorities... A good slalom/trick wake, a reliable boat, enough room for 4 adults and 3-4 young kids.

I had a 94 prostar 190. So I don't think the 09 response has quite that low of bow.

The boat I'm looking at doesn't have the wedge or a tower (which is fine for me). As the kiddos get older I might have to invest in those options.

Edited by mwfillmore

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Woodski

@mwfillmore: You are golden with ZO & the LXI has an excellent shortline slalom wake. Actually, the LXI is slightly more of a nose dipper compared to a PS190 since the nose rolls down slightly at the bow compared to a PS190 (we have both on our lake) but easy to adapt and learn how not to dip the nose. A clean LXI w/o wedge / tower and equipped with ZO is a great slalom machine, congrats on that find / purchase.

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Slayer

I have not tried startron and don't plan on it since I got to the bottom of my issue. My engine does have cats but I don't think that's the issue. I would be more apt to blame the ECM calibration. I've seen similar issues in the automotive development world. Since using no stabilizer works fine I might as well save the money for something else (not that it's too expensive).

I actually prefer the cat Monsoon engine. It runs fine for me, there were issues on the earlier years but those were all addressed by the 2008 model year. With out the stabilizer the exhaust fumes have no odor (I'm sure there is still CO there). My 2002 boat with the non-cat Monsoon would suffocate me. I put my ski on while the boat is idling out of the canal. With my old boat I would pass out if I tried that.

Yeah, you're right about the cat problem being solved in 2008. I've never had that CO issue with my non-cat boat. Also, startron seems to burn with no odor, unlike Stabil.

@Woodski thanks for the info. This boat has zero off, so I should be good there. I'm a 3 event skier that skis 75% of the time free skiing on a public lake 5 miles from the house and I hope to get a membership at a private lake for the weekends. My priorities... A good slalom/trick wake, a reliable boat, enough room for 4 adults and 3-4 young kids.

I had a 94 prostar 190. So I don't think the 09 response has quite that low of bow.

The boat I'm looking at doesn't have the wedge or a tower (which is fine for me). As the kiddos get older I might have to invest in those options.

Woodski has given you some great advice. You'll love that boat. A guy on my lake here has a 94 PS190 and my RLXI is more prone to bow dip than his is. The second gen RLXI you're looking at is no where near as bad as the first gen for bow dip. Also, like Woodski said, the Malibu cruise will get screwy in a turn around, but with ZO you're good.

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mwfillmore

All, thank you for all the information. I get to see the bit on Saturday. So hopefully it's everything it has been described to be.

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mwfillmore

Do any of you guys use a skylon pole for those terrible days spent harassing kids on tubes? If so is there a specific one for a malibu? I know their pylons use to be larger diameter than the other brands.

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Wayne

I had a stainless 2-piece fly high on my 2002 Sunsetter. I liked the twin cables better on the fly high versus the single cable on the skylon. My factory pylon never loosened since the fly high just didn't flex at all with a boarder on it.

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Woodski

I use an Airboom, fits great. Not sure they are in business anymore. I really use it for footing.

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mwfillmore

Not sure what you are paying in CA, but in Canada that boat is selling for ~26,000USD

http://www.boatdealers.ca/boats-for-sale/283754/malibu-response-lxi-surrey-british-columbia

im heading to Vancouver today to see it in person. And unfortunately, your math is wrong. I wish it was 26k. 40,800/1.41 (if I'm lucky with the exchange rate that is plummeting opposite of my favor). Plus figuring out how to get to Cali plus "use tax" Aka California dipping their hands in my pockets... Any way, looks great in the pics. I'll be lucky to get home for 30 plus taxes. I'll toss some pics up if I get everything taken care of that I hope to!

Edited by mwfillmore

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mwfillmore

Bagged it... Hopefully I'll have this baby home in 2 weeks. We'll see how long it takes. She's not perfect, but she's pretty darn close.

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ahopkinsVTX

Very nice looking Response!!

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Slayer

Congrats!! That's a beautiful boat.

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