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New to me 1999 Sunsetter LXI !


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Hi Crew! 

I picked up my first boat over the weekend, a 1999 Sunsetter LXI ! 

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipNPudoENdtNbnk2nn_CBCCY4Eu22FaNzpp7tcUjUmfgsvkLmFrkfaHlkkjYPsC5_A?key=SXdDN1VkVTB6VWFEc1pLMUJqaWdQUWVzZE5LaWZR

Overall, it's it good condition. I test drove it out on the lake and was happy with how it drove. The vinyl is good, some benches were recently redone, and the hull is in decent shape however you can see there are a few gel coat repairs near the fenders of the trailer. After trailering it to the cottage, I noticed that the hull rubbed against the fender guard on one side and caused some small damage. There was already repairs done there and I realized that the previous owner must have trailered it without transom straps and had damaged and repaired the hull in those areas. 

The boat inspector said I shouldn't have to worry, and the repairs look good, however I did some damage to it as well. https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipNPudoENdtNbnk2nn_CBCCY4Eu22FaNzpp7tcUjUmfgsvkLmFrkfaHlkkjYPsC5_A/photo/AF1QipPD9ERUfMUkgeFW2yJ1CYTt2mXRWnvuSSbxP_Ko?key=SXdDN1VkVTB6VWFEc1pLMUJqaWdQUWVzZE5LaWZR 

Should I repair the gel coat before putting it in the water? Once in the water, I will re-carpet the fender guards on the trailer. 

Also, I'm planning on docking it with mooring whips, anything I should consider first, or ways to check for leaks? I need a new automatic bilge, suggestions? THANKS! 

  • Like 2
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Great Boat, need more pictures.   I could not open the second link.    I would replace the stainless steel propeller with an Acme 515 or 525 as soon as possible.  Switching to the modern nibral propeller was a big improvement or my boat.

  • Like 1
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8 minutes ago, Bozboat said:

Great Boat, need more pictures.   I could not open the second link.    I would replace the stainless steel propeller with an Acme 515 or 525 as soon as possible.  Switching to the modern nibral propeller was a big improvement or my boat.

I added a few more pics, the 2nd link was to show the new damage from the trailer fender, it is the last 3 pics in the folder. Should I have it repaired before putting it in the water? Or it is just cosmetic. For the props, what is the difference between the 515 and 525? Thanks

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Great looking boat!  If you plan on trailering a lot, you might want to make sure that trailer really fits that boat.  I might even suggest ordering a trailer designed for that specific boat and selling the Moomba trailer if you're going to be trailering a lot.  Gel damage like that from the trailer shouldn't happen.

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Congrats! That's a good looking boat. A few of those chips in the gel coat, while small, look deep enough that I might consider repairing them before leaving the boat in the water for an extended period of time. Definitely make sure you have a functional bilge pump as well. Do a search on this site and you'll find plenty of discussion on bilge pump replacement. They can be purchased through most marine related websites, and even Walmart. If it were me, I would ensure the inside of the hull is bone dry and then drop it in the water and spend some time inspecting for leaks while floating at the ramp. Sounds like you may not be trailering much, but as mentioned above that trailer looks like it was jury-rigged to accommodate the SSLXi.  

 

 

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If you are pressed for time, you can use Marine Tex to fix the damage, you can make it look ok and definitely functional. Later you could sand it out and fix the gel coat.  I have used Marine Tex for chips that occur out of sight, the stuff is amazing.

The Acme 515 is more speed and less power than the 525 which is more power and less speed. I have the 515 and it is all I could ever imagine needing.  Switching from the original CVP SS prop, I think the acme is smoother, faster, and less to no cavitation. The acme is not as strong as SS so when you hit something (and you will) the prop takes more of the hit which protects the driveshaft and strut.   Also there are some reports of the CVP SS throwing blades. 

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1 hour ago, UWSkier said:

Great looking boat!  If you plan on trailering a lot, you might want to make sure that trailer really fits that boat.  I might even suggest ordering a trailer designed for that specific boat and selling the Moomba trailer if you're going to be trailering a lot.  Gel damage like that from the trailer shouldn't happen.

Thanks! I'm planning on leaving it at the cottage, the only place I'm planning on trailering it to would be for servicing. The fender guards are completely worn out, there isn't any carpet to protect the boat, so I'll fix that asap. 

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1 hour ago, John I. said:

Congrats! That's a good looking boat. A few of those chips in the gel coat, while small, look deep enough that I might consider repairing them before leaving the boat in the water for an extended period of time. Definitely make sure you have a functional bilge pump as well. Do a search on this site and you'll find plenty of discussion on bilge pump replacement. They can be purchased through most marine related websites, and even Walmart. If it were me, I would ensure the inside of the hull is bone dry and then drop it in the water and spend some time inspecting for leaks while floating at the ramp. Sounds like you may not be trailering much, but as mentioned above that trailer looks like it was jury-rigged to accommodate the SSLXi.  

 

 

Good advice, thanks! Ya, I won't be trailering much, just to and from servicing when needed. Hahaha jury-rigged trailer! I wish I did more research on trailers before buying it, I was focused on the boat.  

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1 hour ago, Bozboat said:

If you are pressed for time, you can use Marine Tex to fix the damage, you can make it look ok and definitely functional. Later you could sand it out and fix the gel coat.  I have used Marine Tex for chips that occur out of sight, the stuff is amazing.

The Acme 515 is more speed and less power than the 525 which is more power and less speed. I have the 515 and it is all I could ever imagine needing.  Switching from the original CVP SS prop, I think the acme is smoother, faster, and less to no cavitation. The acme is not as strong as SS so when you hit something (and you will) the prop takes more of the hit which protects the driveshaft and strut.   Also there are some reports of the CVP SS throwing blades. 

Marine Tex looks pretty good to get the season started off right away. Thanks! I'm a slalom skier which is why I chose the Sunsetter LXI, but I'm sure friends will want to try wakeboarding and wakesurfing. Sounds like the 525 might be more all around. I ski at 32-34 mph. 

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Congrats, hope you will enjoy your new ride!

You can most definitely move the fenders out an inch or so.
They are mounted to the trailer frame with just 2 bolts on each end. I would remove them, see how far out you can safely go, drill new holes, and re-mount them to give the hull more clearance on each side. Maybe you can get them even as wide enough to get rid of the doubled up trailer bunks. That way the boat would sit lower on the trailer which is better for towing and makes loading/unloading easier.

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Just now, pmm009 said:

Marine Tex looks pretty good to get the season started off right away. Thanks! I'm a slalom skier which is why I chose the Sunsetter LXI, but I'm sure friends will want to try wakeboarding and wakesurfing. Sounds like the 525 might be more all around. I ski at 32-34 mph. 

The 515 would be better for skiing.  I have no trouble at all pulling wakeboarders with  the 515 and the SSLXI was not meant to be a surf boat, although some have been able to make it surf.

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On the 515 vs 525 debate, what's your lake elevation?  If you're above 1500', or if you think you'll want to surf it or load up a ton of ballast and wakeboard, etc, go 525.  Below, 515.

Edited by UWSkier
Edited because I originally had this backwards...
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3 hours ago, UWSkier said:

On the 515 vs 525 debate, what's your lake elevation?  If you're above 1500', or if you think you'll want to surf it or load up a ton of ballast and wakeboard, etc, go 515.  Below, 525.

We're about at 650-800', surfing would be fun, but slalom is the priority. 

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See if your trailer fenders can be adjusted. On many, you can loosen a couple bolts and slide the fenders sideways to make them fit the boat better. You should have at least enough space to get fingers between the boat and the fenders.

That way you don't damage the same spots again. Also you may be putting the trailer in too deep when loading, which can also allow you to land on the fenders.

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1 hour ago, pmm009 said:

We're about at 650-800', surfing would be fun, but slalom is the priority. 

Realized my advice above is backwards.  I always do that.  lol

515 is the better prop for your use.  525 would be better at alt or surfing.  Sorry for the confusion.  Just listen to @Bozboat

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Question about the boat battery, the boat currently has one battery, I've seen a lot of boats with a switch and a 2nd battery to run on Battery 1, Battery 2, or both. Is this a good upgrade to consider? How to I preserve my current single battery strength/charge? Is there a switch for it that I should turn off when I'm not boating? Thanks!

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11 minutes ago, pmm009 said:

Question about the boat battery, the boat currently has one battery, I've seen a lot of boats with a switch and a 2nd battery to run on Battery 1, Battery 2, or both. Is this a good upgrade to consider? How to I preserve my current single battery strength/charge? Is there a switch for it that I should turn off when I'm not boating? Thanks!

Unless you are floating for hours running ampos and lots of speakers, a single battery is fine.  Of course on longer trips, have a jump start pack (the new lithium ones are small but awesome!) handy.  Just in case...

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I'm going to buff my '99 SSLXI before putting it in the water. I bought Meguiar's products, (compound, polish, and wax) and chemical guys 6.5" buffing pads (medium cut, light cut, and finishing pads). 

Can I buff with the decals on the boat? Or should I take them off first? The biggest ones are the Malibu with the sun on the sides, can I buff right over them? If I take them off, I was thinking of replacing them with the more modern Malibu logo (just lettering). When would I reapply the new decal? After compound? Before waxing? 

Also, I'm thinking of removing the Exclusive US Open Towboats on the transom, maybe replacing it with a modern Malibu decal.  

Anyone have any pics of their Sunsetters debadged, or with new decals to give me ideas? 

Thanks!

 

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1 hour ago, pmm009 said:

I'm going to buff my '99 SSLXI before putting it in the water. I bought Meguiar's products, (compound, polish, and wax) and chemical guys 6.5" buffing pads (medium cut, light cut, and finishing pads). 

Can I buff with the decals on the boat? Or should I take them off first? The biggest ones are the Malibu with the sun on the sides, can I buff right over them? If I take them off, I was thinking of replacing them with the more modern Malibu logo (just lettering). When would I reapply the new decal? After compound? Before waxing? 

Also, I'm thinking of removing the Exclusive US Open Towboats on the transom, maybe replacing it with a modern Malibu decal.  

Anyone have any pics of their Sunsetters debadged, or with new decals to give me ideas? 

Thanks!

 

You can lightly buff over the decals.

if you take them off, you will see the original color of the hull, so that would be some more work.

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agreed.  I buff and polish over my original decals and they look great.  Just be gentle on them.  You can put some elbow grease into the gelcoat but don't overdo it on the decals.

Did you buy boat-specific compounds or auto compounds?  You can be quite a bit more aggressive with gelcoat than you'd be on a car.  If you're looking to remove oxidation, you'll probably want a heavy cutting pad if not a wool bonnet.  If the oxidation is very light, then what you have should be good.  As always, start conservative and get more aggressive as necessary.

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1 hour ago, UWSkier said:

agreed.  I buff and polish over my original decals and they look great.  Just be gentle on them.  You can put some elbow grease into the gelcoat but don't overdo it on the decals.

Did you buy boat-specific compounds or auto compounds?  You can be quite a bit more aggressive with gelcoat than you'd be on a car.  If you're looking to remove oxidation, you'll probably want a heavy cutting pad if not a wool bonnet.  If the oxidation is very light, then what you have should be good.  As always, start conservative and get more aggressive as necessary.

Thanks UW, I ordered the all marine products, Meguiar's Marine/RV Heavy Duty Oxidation Remover - M4916C, Meguiar's Boat/RV Polish & Gloss Enhancer M4516, and Meguiar's Flagship Premium Marine Wax - M6316C. 

The previous owner removed the original "Sunsetter LXI" decals and replaced them with "Sunsetter LX" decals. You can see the outline underneath the new decals. I'm thinking of removing them and trying to buff it out. The Malibu decal on the sides are banged up too. If I replace them, at what point should I put new ones on in the buffing and waxing process?

https://photos.app.goo.gl/ytPs5sGTNbVeWYm97 

 

 

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Dump the decals and do a good job on the polish (BTW, the Meguiar's oxy remover works well IME).  If you want decals, get some new, maybe understated (?) ones from Domednumbers.com.

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