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cgarman

‘98 Malibu Sunsetter LX - Info/Feedback

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cgarman

Howdy y’all! I’m new to the forum and I need some feedback. I’m currently contemplating my first boat purchase. I found this Sunsetter LX on Craigslist and it looks to be a super clean boat. I have two boys, ages 4 and 7, so I think this would be great family boat for tubing, knee boarding and learning to wakeboard. What are your thoughts on this boat? What should I look for when inspecting the boat (stringer rot, gel coat issues, known monsoon V8 mechanical issues, etc.)?

https://houston.craigslist.org/boa/d/malibu-sunsetter-lxi-98/6688635162.html

Thanks in advance for the help!

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mackie12

that is a great boat and appears to be in great condition, it will work perfect for you and the boys. One thing is the freeboard on those older Sunsetter's, in rougher water you will take a few over the bow. As far as what to look for on used boats, there is a list on here somewhere that I am sure someone will attach. But I would run a compression test for sure along with a test drive.

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jaciche

The GM block based monsoon engine series is one of the more reliable engines that you'll find in inboards. I definitely recommend testing the compression in all the cylinders, water testing it and checking for water leaks. That boat is all fiberglass, no need to worry about stringers rotting.

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Woodski

@cgarman:  Sunsetter owners seem to love them, check this site for threads to get the actual details.  Key areas to check are engine health (compression / leak down / general condition / service history and a key is impeller changes and has the boat ever had winter freeze issues), running gear for general condition, hull condition & look to see if the nose and underside, rub rail are in good shape and not damaged and interior vinyl as that boat is from a sunny climate it appears, sun is harsh on upholstery and also any signs of mold in ski lockers, etc.  That boat does not have any wood, so no stringer issues.

There are a few threads on this site that also offer great tips and advice on looking at a used boat purchase, use the search feature.  Good luck and welcome if you snag that boat, don't wait too long as the Sunsetter is a highly desired hull.

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minnmarker

Agree with all the above.  Talk about well maintained!  That upholstery looks near new.  It looks like boat and trailer were babied.

Unless there is something major wrong with the engine or drive I would go ahead.  Have fun with the boys!

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gainer83

I had a 1999 Sunsetter LXi for 8 years. It was a great boat, reliable and was a great first boat for me. I had more issues with the trailer, mine was a single axle. Looks like that one is tandem, so problem solved. Mine was also the same paint scheme, teal and purple stripes. If you look at malibu’s New Azure(teal) blue the trend seems to be coming back. I went through a few steering cables, but that was probably my fault. Good luck! 

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asp13

Looks really nice. I bought my first boat this spring, 01 Sunsetter lxi. Its an amazing boat, does everything I want it to: slalom, surf, wakeboard etc. Its alot better on bigger lake with more boat waves than compared to a smaller response. I am very happy with my sunsetter, highly recommended!

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powbmps

That boat looks super clean.  Good price too.

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John I.

As noted by the OP, this is a Sunsetter LX, not a Sunsetter LXi as stated in the ad. 

Regardless, the boat appears to be very, very clean! 

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Eagleboy99

For sure, for sure check the HDS for leaks!!

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JasonK

It's a 1999.

According to the Crew docs and the BU docs, it's a 1999 Sunsetter LX.

1998 didn't have a LX or Lxi.

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kerpluxal
1 hour ago, Eagleboy99 said:

For sure, for sure check the HDS for leaks!!

I would not walk away if the HDS leaks. It is an easy fix.

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Eagleboy99

I never said to walk away, and I would not call it an easy fix.  Bunch of glass work, a new shaftlog, driveshaft stuff etc.  If it does leak, take the MSRP fix price off the  offer is what I would do.  Next to the KM computer/gauges, the HDS is the biggest POS "innovation" from Malibu.  A real game changer.  LOL

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Fabricator909
7 minutes ago, Eagleboy99 said:

I never said to walk away, and I would not call it an easy fix.  Bunch of glass work, a new shaftlog, driveshaft stuff etc.  If it does leak, take the MSRP fix price off the  offer is what I would do.  Next to the KM computer/gauges, the HDS is the biggest POS "innovation" from Malibu.  A real game changer.  LOL

It's an afternoon at best, especially if you do the fiberglass shaftlog version that is posted on here. Use biax glass with epoxy resin and it will be stronger than factory.

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solorex

I really don't see what the fear/worry is about the HDS... I have never had an issue with mine, butyl tape is easy to apply, bolt the lid down and you are good to go, never had a leak.

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Eagleboy99

You should read some of the horror stories.  Not pretty.

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kerpluxal
22 minutes ago, Eagleboy99 said:

I never said to walk away, and I would not call it an easy fix.  Bunch of glass work, a new shaftlog, driveshaft stuff etc.  If it does leak, take the MSRP fix price off the  offer is what I would do.  Next to the KM computer/gauges, the HDS is the biggest POS "innovation" from Malibu.  A real game changer.  LOL

I did the easy fix:

  1.  remove cover
  2. Clean both surfaces thoroughly
  3. 3M 5200 bead 
  4. screw back together

 has not leaked again and new owner that contacts me all the time on boat has not contacted me on this as of yet. 3 years going since I repaired

Edited by kerpluxal

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cgarman
3 hours ago, Eagleboy99 said:

For sure, for sure check the HDS for leaks!!

How do you check this?

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Eagleboy99

This thread:  

 

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cgarman

Update- test drove the boat today. I saw more water in the hull than I thought would be there. I noticed water leaking from the flexible exhaust hose connection on the port side. This could be as simple as tightening a hose clamp... there was also more wear on the back seat than I would have liked to see and it appears that the original stainless steel prop is still on it. Not sure how I feel about the boat but no completely turned off just yet. The motor started right up and ran great. How much should I try to get it for to make up for the repairs that need to take place to the leak and rear seat?

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