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Everything posted by JPW

  1. I presently use an Armada to tow, but the old gal is getting long in the tooth, and its time to get something new. I know a Toyota Tundra for sure can haul my Senesta, but I'll be honest I like the smaller Tacoma (aka Taco) a bit better for my daily driver. My2008 244 Sunesta xtream book tells me dryweight is 4400lbs. I figure the trailer is another 1,000 - then another 1000 for fuel/gear. That's 6400 Book on a new Tacoma (with tow package) is 6400lbs 640 tongue weight and it comes with a ATF cooler. Thus I'm right at the limit using gorilla math. I don't haul the boat a lot and not long distances. What you guys think - am I cutting it too close with a TACO?
  2. JPW

    Can a TACO pull my 244 Sunesta?

    Ya I did like the big truck, just it's hard to use the big truck as the daily driver fro me. Heck, I used to use my 40' Gulfstream DP -350HP Cat engine, freighliner chasis on 1000+ mile trips. Except for the remote camera I could not tell there was a 24 foot boat attached. One trip I had issues with the surge brake and it locked on. Did not noticed but lucky I got flagged down and stopped before serious damage. To finish the trip I took out one of the bleed screws and went without brakes. I know that sounds dangerous but had no issues with braking in that RV even without trailer brakes, I could not even tell the difference without them. Like I said going to keep the Armada for now. I've upgraded the suspension and brakes, had it detailed out and it's really all I need for now. I can't say I'd buy another one, but the v8 titan frame is fine for what I'm doing. Nissan is just to hard to get parts, most have to come from the dealer. I do my own work (have a garage and lift) and like afterfactory mods / upgrades. There are not a lot of (reasonably priced) upgrades for Armadas.
  3. If doing the light bulb trick Don't use a LED or CFL bulb - they throw very little heat. You need old fashioned incandescent bulbs. Also get you a ThermoPro Indoor Outdoor Thermometer (less than fifteen bucks on amazon) put the remote in the compartment and see how low you go!!
  4. Thinking out loud but up here in the North many folks put coolant line heaters on diesel engines. Most of these work on thermosiphon principle (passive heat exchange) and don't actually pump water. Generally sold as "Hotstart" systems. Perhaps there is a way to plumb one into your cooling lines. Much better than trying to trickle water thru them (and as noted won't get past thermostat) They sell these things on amazon - perhaps talk to the manufactures of a few and see. These things are usually not expensive - like $150 for a 1500watt system. From what you are saying you really don't get all that cold. You most likely would be just fine with any type of heat source down in the engine compartment. Light bulb, or simple magnetic block heater. Put in a remote thermostat in your engine compartment so you can easy monitor. Most of them also capture min/max so you can see what was going on. I don't know your boat but if your drain plugs are easy access then just pull them also. Off topic but related: Years ago when I lived outside of Minneapolis , (like 1991) I had my boat still in the water when a freak winter storm hit. Froze the lake and my dock. Dozens of others on Lake Minnetonka lost their boats to this storm. I put a simple small space heater in my engine compartment and ran it for the week or so. Put a few bags of salt around the hull to keep it from crushing. Temps went well below zero. When we went to pull the boat the ice was 6" thick. Took chainsaws, cut a small path. I don't remember the boat manufacture 22' cutty of somekind or another with a small block chevy engine / mercruiser. When ready it fired right up. Was able to manuaver the boat to the breakwall and pull it out onto the trailer. I got some great pictures of people standing on ice with chainsaws as we pulled the boat. Years later when I moved more south, I used to show it to people and say - here I am icefishing in Minnesota, it took forever to cut a hole big enough for the boat.
  5. JPW

    Can a TACO pull my 244 Sunesta?

    Thanks for the help guys. I've decided to keep the Armada for another year. Then will figure out more later. Agreed that a taco is not enough of a truck for safety. I need a bigger truck or a smaller boat. Now that the kids are off to school, a smaller boat may be better.
  6. Ha - ONLY 218H on my girl. She mostly is a mobile on-the water cooler / stereo. I motor about 20 feet offshore and we all stand around her in the water off the beach.
  7. I've got a Chap 2008 244 SUNESTA EXTREME It has the perfect pass ski system I've never been able to find engine hours meter - is there something hidden. I've never been able to find one on any of the gauges or looking in the manual.
  8. Sweet - and thanks. it was hidden in the smartcraft gauge. OUtstanding. many thanks
  9. Selling my 2008 SUNESTA 224 XTREME, need to take a year off, but then upgrading. I've put on craigslist here in Ohio but where else should I list it?
  10. Mounting a Lowrance HDI 83/200 transducer on my 24 Chap Sunesta Getting a lot of conflicting information on the net as well as talking to Lowrance directly. The issue is I do NOT want to drill a 1” hole in the back of my boat. They require a 1” hole as that is the size of the plug. My boat has a swim platform on the back and there is no easy place to put this hole above the water line. I want a much smaller hole. I want to cut the cable and then re-splice it. Lots of folks are telling me I can’t do that, that cutting the cable will cause bad voodoo or something. I also want to extend the cable. A cable extension kit is like $50, for 12’ of wire. While it’s not the money it’s just that since I am going to cut the wire I should be able to splice in some extra wire. I assume that this cable has shielded wire. Can’t I just splice in some 18/4 Awg Shielded Speaker Wire? On the splices I need to be sure to solder correctly and put some foil back as shielding. Anybody has any issues? ALSO - or separate question, for the wire that is running on the outside of the boat, any suggestions on how to secure that wire down to the outside of the hull?
  11. 2008 Chap 244 Xtream. My wake tower has a Bimini top on it. It's getting pretty beat up and looking to get new canvas. I do not have a Chap dealer anywhere near me. Anyone recommend on-line location to get a replacement canvas made?
  12. We take the 244 chap sunsesta (xtreme) with us camping. I have a class a diesel RV built on a freightliner chassis. Been doing this for 4 years now. The long annual trip we take about 1k miles with the boat. I am a stickler for trailer maintenance and replace and/or repack bearings ever year. I never had any issues towing with my Nissan armada but always seem to have issues with brakes when towing behind the RV. I don't tow with the Nissan very far but the issues I have with the RV on longer trips is overheating causes by excessive braking. This SST trailer has a surge brake and dual axel disk brakes. When attached to the RV I am true level. The emergency brake lock wire has plenty of play. I just can't figure out why the brakes overheat. This last trip after 100 miles I stopped and using thermal temp hubs were over250 deg. Then later in the trip after stopping and checking again the brakes went on again and I had a nasty overheat with the grease blowing off the brake buddy caps and I had to stop again. Brake dust everywhere. This time I took out the bleeder screws on the caliper and finished the trip with no brakes. No further heat issues. My RV did not notice the braking difference for normal driving but of course I want brakes on my trailer. I know it is something with the surge piston but just wondering if these surge brakes just don't work well behind a large RV. Thinking I may have to switch to electric brakes. Any thoughts?
  13. JPW

    Pulling 244 behind my RV issues

    i know e-trailer sells a few of those E over H kits. Around 700 deer for parts. Install looks pretty easy, but then need to put electric controls in everything I own that tows. Also no way to get rid of the old actuator without some welding. I don't have a lot of hillls where I tow. That seems to be the biggest issue for surge. Without that surge is actually pretty reliable. Right now after doing my research thinking that my Actuator is getting old. It's one of those A-84 UFP Trailer Buddy. Looks like a quality actuator, but I did get this boat/trailer used and the guy I bought it from did tell me that while he took great care of the boat, he clearly neglected the trailer as it was only used for winter storage. I may just replace the actuator. That would be a :30min job.
  14. JPW

    Pulling 244 behind my RV issues

    Yes I think electric over hydraulic is the way I need to go. Surge brakes are fine for local but for any distance I can't rely on them anymore. I was so concerned about overheat it make me too stress and the drive was no fun. Had these darn breaks lock up on my 400miles into this trip - going UP A HILL. New pads on this trip and you swear they had 20K miles on them already. Tons of brake dust. I think that behind the RV for some reason the surge piston gets confused, or the fact that the RV does not rock or move like a truck does. The surge gets stuck on. I feel lucky I make it this time. Any recommendations on trailers?
  15. JPW

    Pulling 244 behind my RV issues

    Just going to add that I put new calipers on last year.
  16. JPW

    Sonar Transducer mount location

    mertzerHey Mertzer, I ended up going with the Lowrance Elite 4 HDI - For under 300 deer, it has both downscan and sounder, GPS, maps, water temp and is a small color screen. These 244 do not have a lot of room to mount, so small screen. I went ahead and just used the factory included 83/200 transducer. Drilled a 1" hole right where the transom connects to the swim platform on the starboard side. On the port side there is a drain hole, so I just went opposite of that hole. To refill the 1" hole I saved the fiberglass plug, and after running the wire, chipped it out to make room for the cord, then stuck the plug back in. Coated everything up with some 4200 quick bond. I was going to put a claim shell cover over the hole, but all of this is in a location nobody can see so not going to worry about it. After doing this, I'm still not happy about drilling a 1" hole in my boat, but it's not so bad. I'm short deer right now or perhaps I would have seen about replacing the thru hull OE transducer with the one from Lowarance. If that one would fit in the same mount as the OE one, then that would be a better way to go.
  17. JPW

    Sonar Transducer mount location

    Lowarance told me downscan is impaired and generally does not work with shoot-thru hull method, for their transducers. My 244 xtreame came with two thru hull sensors, one is a transducer for depth and the 2nd is a paddle-wheel for speed. I was going to perhaps replace the depth for a HDI transducer, but did not finish the research on if this possible.
  18. JPW

    Sonar Transducer mount location

    I also have a 244 xtreme and putting in a Lowrance hybrid dual imaging (downscan and sounder). As an aside my boat has a factory installed thru hull transducer, and I think yours should also. There are two thru hull sensors one for depth and the other speed. Look in your engine area right behind the gas tank. I was thinking of replacing that with a full HD thru hull sounder for my lowrance. Talking to Lowrance they make one that would work for ~400 deer. You may be able to directly replace the OE with a better one for use via your fish finder. Others have reported better performance with transom mounted than thru-hull, but for me I suspect it's personal preference. An IN-hull will not allow downscan imaging or water temp. When the boat is in the water there is nobody to see this sensor, and it seems easy enough to install, so going to just go with transom mounted. There is some pics of what others have done in the thread I started last week: http://forum.chaparralboats.com/index.php?showtopic=25684
  19. I'm not an expert on drilling fiberglass. I think a bi-metal will be fine, but suspect carbide tipped would be better but 1" is not a size I can find in carbide. Run the drill backwards a bit to get the groves going, painters tape. Good suggestions.
  20. I've spliced extensions before for other applications, the trick is you have to fully shield the wire again after solder, and then heat shrink wrap the wire. However, I found that Eagle brand extensions match Lowrance, and got one, also ordered some 4200 fast cure Looks just easier to drill the 1" hole and clam shell like some of you guys did. Also I don't have any 5 wire shielded cable handy. Need to hit the hardware store for some p-clips, stainless steel screws and a 1" drill bi-metal hole saw many thanks -jp
  21. JPW

    How to drain and fog mercruiser 377 6.2l V8?

    You an run on muffs. As long as you have good pressure. The Seloc manual recommends flushing after boating to clean or if in sea water. If you are not sure how to wintertize perhaps pay your marina this year but ask them to tell you how as part of the deal. If this is new boat is there any warranty service from the dealer? Good time to get winterized as we'll Ask them what they are doing
  22. This is on my 2008 244 Sunesta bravo drive. I will do annual maintenance (oil, lube, etc) at a later date. Right now just want to make sure I get freeze protection in the engine. I removed the thermostat, put the muffs on, fired up the engine and gravity feed (from a big bucket) ~5 galls of RV antifreeze. Antifreeze was clearly flowing out the exhaust. I think there is a fuel and power searing coolers. I can’t really see if there is drain plugs on them, design is difficult to get near the engine down there. Do I need to do anything else for protection or am I covered for freeze? many thanks in advance
  23. I did a fresh water system years ago, on an old 20' cutty I had. I did it with a 12v RV pump under an old cooler with a 2nd hand shower head - the key for the shower head is it shut off with just a press of a button. A RV type shower head needs off/on valves.. The hose from the pump to shower head is nothing more than plastic tubing (think home depo. The tank can be many different things - just mostly something that fits neatly in the space you have allocated for it. An old cooler, or 5gal gas can- whatever.
  24. JPW

    The extreme series from Chaparral questions

    I debated as you did and ended up going with the 244. I am very glad I did. For us we don't use the head as much as a toilet but it comes in nice as a little changing area, not to mention it is dry storage for rain. Yes in emergencies a toilet is really important. I changed from the vac-flush toilet to a stand-along camper one (it was like $140 at the camping store) - as a stand alone is just much easier for me. Switching was really a 5 min job. IF you have kids and/or women then a toilet really helps the day go easier without runs to the marina. Sink is really nice. Rinse off hands from so many sticky things kids have - not to mention worm dirt and 100's of other things. I did not think how useful it is, but also it gives a nice storage space and trash compartment. On a boat there is never 'too much' room (unless it is out of the water). Having the extra space means everybody can go. For me once I sat in a 244, there was no way I was going to go smaller. Bottom line is if you can afford it, its worth it to go bigger.