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Intense

New boat owner, have some questions

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Intense

Hey guys,

I'm new to the Malibu world, but I've been boating for years. Our family always had a boat when I was growing up, so I'm not a complete newb on the water.

I just got my Sunsetter on the water for the first time over the weekend and have a couple questions / maintenance issues. Please bare with me if these have already been covered. I tried some searching, but not much luck

OK, here goes:

1. My tach is all over the place. The previous owner thought it might be the ground. Is this common? If so, how can I get the dash apart to fix it?

2. My Sunsetter is a 98 and the carpet is pretty matted down. Is there any cost-effective way to replace the carpet? Or am I just better off leaving it alone?

3. Right now, I'm looking for an in-water slip. My concern is that my bilge appears to be manual. IE, I have to flip the switch to activate it. If I store it on the water and let it sit, will it take on enough water to sink the boat (over a long enough period of time?). Alternatively, could I replace my bilge with an auto one. So, I could leave the switch on and it would only run if the water level got high enough? Would that drain the battery if I let the boat sit long enough. The slip I'm trying to get will not have AC power to trickle charge the battery.

3a. Relating to the bilge. How much water should my boat take on in the period of an hour? a day? When I run my bilge once and hour, there seems to be a fair bit of water coming out...

4. Is it easy to repair gel coat? I've got some cracks and a couple chips I'd like to address.

That's it for now.

Thanks for your input, guys!

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gooddog

You can install an auto bilge pump and a solar battery charger.

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jgouveia3

i would check to see if your bilge pump is really NOT an automatic. As far as I know, all of the BUs have an automatic one installed. You have the OPTION of turning it on manually, but it also works automatically (remove the small black plastic piece in front of the ski pylon, it should be mounted there. You can test it (there is a test knob on mine) from the pump. You can also test it on the trailer by installing your plugs, and adding water to the bilge.

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BlastRlxi

I've had good luck using a little compressed air to "fluff" the carpet. Some have had good luck powerwashing the carpet and sucking the water out with a shop vac.

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Steck

The packing should drip around a drip per second but not be a steady stream of water in the boat. You may need to tighen your packing nut a little to get the proper drip. I know in 99 they had auto bilge so in 98 it prob would have the auto also. A fair amount of water will fill up before the auto bilge pump kicks on. Hope this helps.

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wienrdog

I'm not sure on a '98, but.... Once you get the dash apart (Someone else will have to help you there), for the tach - there may be a 4,6,8 switch on the back. Several members have had issues with a little corrosion in that switch. By moving it back & forth then setting it back on 8, they fixed the tach problem.

Edited by weinrdog

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Daniel

You may want to reconsider keeping your boat in a wet slip due to blistering. I'm not too up to date on that problem, but if my recollection is correct, gel coat will blister if it is exposed to water for extended (and I mean months, not days) amounts of time.

Do a search for Gel Coat blisters and see what turns up.

Daniel

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Gordo

I believe you already have some good advice. But, on the tach, check for loose or bad ground (or bad connection to the distributor) first. Based on what is happening, thats my guess. On the bilge, thats also ood advice - but the auto float just might not be working too. Most bilge pumps have a float to trigger them on "auto", so check that out with the water hose to see if it is working. You may have to buy a new bilge pump, but thats cheap. Carpet - Unless you are a perfectionist and want to spend a LOT of time tearing out existing carpet and glueing new down, I would consider "carpet savers". Take the boat to an auto seat shop and get them to make you a set that you can just lay over the existing.

Welcome to the black hole in the water that sucks money - boating!! Thumbup.gif

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WaveMake'nLSV

Good point! I thought that mine was just a manual via the dash selector/switch, but noticed it turned on auto and the light on the said switch will light when on, then kicks off. My boat leaks a tad more than it should but not enough to worry me, so mine kicks on a couple times/trip when initially taking off.

I am will JG3...I bet it is an auto. Have you LOOKED at the pump? Typically they either have a wired remote float or like mine, is a tad larger in diameter and said Auto or something like that on the pump itself.

i would check to see if your bilge pump is really NOT an automatic. As far as I know, all of the BUs have an automatic one installed. You have the OPTION of turning it on manually, but it also works automatically (remove the small black plastic piece in front of the ski pylon, it should be mounted there. You can test it (there is a test knob on mine) from the pump. You can also test it on the trailer by installing your plugs, and adding water to the bilge.

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JasonK

My 1990 has an automatic bilge, which I believe is original.

My suggestion: use the boat a few times before you tighten the packing nut. I think as it's used it expands, so they tend to leak more at the beginning of the season.

If you keep the boat in the water, get a good wax on it and take it out every month and wax it more. That really helps with the blister problem.

Welcome to the crew and have fun!

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