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4612alan

1988 2300SX 5.0 I/O

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Hello all!

I recently purchased a 1988 2300SX Chaparral open bow that I am currently fixing up from wet sanding to new vinyl throughout.  

I had a few questions I'm hoping to get some answers on like the following:

What is OEM pitch for a 1988 5.0 Alpha 1 2300SX boat? After taking it out a few runs late last summer I was able to get it up to 35mph with only myself on board.  Is this seem right?  I'm thinking I will replace all spark plugs and clean the carb to see if that helps improve speed.  Currently the prop had a 14.5 X 19 

Having a hard time finding decals for the 2300SX boat too - other than the etsy or ebay.  I was able to find the new logo but im strugiling to find anything that says "2300SX"

Lastly, any recommendation on making the carpet look like new again as well as making the console look new again?  its currently a light faded looking blue - I'll be sure to post pictures soon!

I really appreciate any responses!

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You and I have the same boat!  The gelcoat looks great on yours.

Check out my profile pics.  We restored the interior and replaced the carpet, put in some new lighting, new stereo, upholstery, etc.  It's a great boat and is large enough for two families.  

As for your speed, 40-45 mph seems to be top speed for me.  However, I have a 17 Pitch, 14.5 dia, 4 blade prop on it that I purchased specifically for getting out of the hole.

I'd love to see some pics of yours!

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not sure they made a 5.0 back then if its a v8 its probably a 5.7, unless its an old ford 5.0 in there, in which case you probably have an OMC drive.  Or its a 4.3 GM v6.  Those old boats are heavy, I would think 40-45 would be about right.  Unless the owner previously did a tune up plus wire and such might not hurt.  But probably have to know what RPMS your running.

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@soldier4402 it is probably a 5.7 Magnum made by Chevy, which is what is in mine.  I think I'm at 4000- 4200 rpm at around 40 mph.  Fast enough for me with family in tow.

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Hi all, it's been awhile since I have seen this thread and thank yours for the replies! It is, in fact, a 5.0 LX Engine which is why I'm thinking im only getting about a top speed of 35 mph out of out it and considering the weight of the boat around 4,500 LBS.  Any suggestions on how i would be able to get the boat to around 40/45 mph?mzUDOkvrns_FHTfoytIptdxAikPfq-D4Cridu1gKtW9qWfXbofAfeJezM8Z5910zY-qFugqrYaGoY1E1

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15 hours ago, 4612alan said:

Hi all, it's been awhile since I have seen this thread and thank yours for the replies! It is, in fact, a 5.0 LX Engine which is why I'm thinking im only getting about a top speed of 35 mph out of out it and considering the weight of the boat around 4,500 LBS.  Any suggestions on how i would be able to get the boat to around 40/45 mph?

So, a 1988 MerCruiser 5.0 LX was essentially the same thing as a 350 Magnum of its day, except being a 305 cid, and 350 Mag used forged pistons. 5.0 LX had 230 hp I believe. A little light for hp and torque for that hull, but gets the job done. Boat should look terrific when you're finished!

I'd do a full tune up of that Thunderbolt IV ignition and clean the carburetor

MerCruiser part # 823426A1 for Quadra Jet carb repair kit.

MerCruiser part # 805759Q3 or T3 for V8 distributor cap and rotor (Quicksilver and Mercury labelled parts, but exact same)

MerCruiser part # 892150Q02 or K02 for ignition sensor if you have the older ring terminal type (goes under the rotor)

NGK  BR6FS  spark plugs 0.035" gap

Verify engine timing of 8 degree BTDC (being a Thunderbolt IV system, you don't have to place the engine into base timing mode like you would for a later model Thunderbolt V)

19" pitch prop is probably factory, but I would think a 350 Mag would use 1.50 ratio and perhaps a 1.62 gear ratio for your Alpha 1 MR to compensate for less power. Just a guess. 

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Hey Shep, any experience with the Land & Sea shifting prop?  Are they still around?  This is the sort of situation where it would seem to apply.  Always wondered how effective they were.

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Good call Futzin'. 

I remember a company having a prop that could change pitch between start & wot rpms. Never knew of anyone using 1. But the logic sounded great.

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See if your engine RPM is between 4400 to 4800 at wide open throttle when trimmed for best speed.  If the 19 pitch runs near 4800, then a 21 pitch should drop your RPM and give you better speed.  If the 19 pitch runs near 4400, then it will be the best size for top speed.  If it runs below 4400 RPM, the prop is too big, lugging the engine, and a 17 pitch would be a better choice.  Make sure the engine is in good running condition, the hull is clean, and the boat is loaded the way you will normally use it.  There are a lot of variables involved in choosing the correct prop, so WOT RPM is the easiest way to narrow it down.

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Thank you all for the kind advice! I have since added "smart tabs" as well as replaced the ICM and mechanical fuel pump.  Mechanically, all seems to be in working order these days! 

Unfortunately I'm seeing blisters now as I was leaving in the water from June to October (fresh water lake).  I have seen similar post about blistering and am fearful this may be the end of my boat after all the hard work I put into it.  I'm sure the professional repair will be much more than the boat is worth as there seems to be hundreds of blisters.  

My question to you all, would having a boat hoist be a "cheap" remedy to this from getting worse and eventually would the blisters "deflate" ?  Am I at a lost cause here?  Hate that this has occurred after all the work I have been putting in. I have replace, spark wires,distributor cap and rotar, plugs, ignition coil, ICM unit, alternator, mechanical fuel pump, starter and re-vinyl it all.  As well as wet sanded and detailed etc...

In the meantime please see my pictures after detailing and adding smart tabs to help me plane out quick along with the change from 19 to 21 prop seemed to help out a ton.  Hope to hear from you all!
Photos:
 

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I have a 1987 235XLC and its the same color pattern as yours. Took a lot of sanding to get it back to near normal. Yours is looking very nice.

I too have the blisters like yours. Probably 5 years ago, I took it to a specialty shop to have it looked at. For them to take care of every one of the blisters, would have taken over a year out of the water. Mostly because they'd have to drill each one, then let each drilled out blister dry before repairing. The cost was more than the resale value. So I turned them down.

So what I do, right way or not, I watch over the hull and look for blisters that have broken off and seal them in the spring before launching.

If you can find a marina with a lift in each slip, that would be an easy way around it. 

How much to you love your boat relative to the cost of repair?

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I did a web search on blistering........... NO suprises.  Lots of reasons. Some were specific about.....WHERE ... the blisters are forming............... Gelcoat ones or past the gel coat. Into the structural glass cloth & chopped mat.    Calling a glass cloth company might get you a straight answer  If a blister forms YEARS LATER ?  It was made or mixed wrong in my opinion.

My 2 ...2002 186 boats sit all summer in open water & winter storage. Not a blister since new.

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@4612Alan, I can't help with the blistering, but I'm wondering how the smart tabs turned out.  Do they help plane out noticeably faster?  Were they hard to install?  Which ones did you get?

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Sku#1828464

Smart Tabs, Comp 9 $170.00 total I think and super easy to install. I love them and would definitely recommend. Turning is easier, no more porpusing either and plane out way quicker IMO so far.

boat update: I'm getting it professionally repaired for 6 grand.  I'm too far in to give up now... right? :/ The place was very knowledgeable and helpful at Fred's custom boat repair here in MI.  They told me 2-3 weeks from today.  Hope that's true...

      spacer.gif

 

 

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6 hours ago, 4612alan said:

My question to you all, would having a boat hoist be a "cheap" remedy to this from getting worse and eventually would the blisters "deflate" ?  Am I at a lost cause here?  Hate that this has occurred after all the work I have been putting in.

Were there any signs of the blisters when you bought it in 2015?  Hard to tell in the pic a few posts above the day you bought it, but these look like maybe it was painted/gelcoated prior to you buying it and wasn't prepped very well, hence the paint/gelcoat not lasting and blistering within a few years.

21 minutes ago, 4612alan said:

boat update: I'm getting it professionally repaired for 6 grand.  I'm too far in to give up now... right? :/ The place was very knowledgeable and helpful at Fred's custom boat repair here in MI.  They told me 2-3 weeks from today.  Hope that's true...

Not bad considering they have to sand blast the entire bottom hull and up the sides at least where all the white is to get rid of that entire surface of whatever it is, gelcoat or paint and then fill in remaining divetts with a suitable faring compound that will not only stick to the bare surface, but that will hold the new gelcoat that they will apply.

What did they tell you they will do exactly for that $6K?

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Thanks Alan. You and I have the same boat so your experience convinces me I need them!  The boat takes a good amount of time to plane up.    My next upgrade will be a wakeboard tower.

Sorry you have to spend all those $$$ to fix the hull.  Ugh.

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On 6/5/2019 at 6:30 PM, Hatem said:

Were there any signs of the blisters when you bought it in 2015?  Hard to tell in the pic a few posts above the day you bought it, but these look like maybe it was painted/gelcoated prior to you buying it and wasn't prepped very well, hence the paint/gelcoat not lasting and blistering within a few years.

Not bad considering they have to sand blast the entire bottom hull and up the sides at least where all the white is to get rid of that entire surface of whatever it is, gelcoat or paint and then fill in remaining divetts with a suitable faring compound that will not only stick to the bare surface, but that will hold the new gelcoat that they will apply.

 What did they tell you they will do exactly for that $6K?

Hatem - After my first year of owning the boat (also my first boat) I left it in the slip and at the end of the year I did notice the blisters forming but did not think a whole lot about it as I thought that they would disappear after 'drying' out ( I very wrong).  The owner prior to me was an elderly gentlemen that only used it for fishing and did not keep it in the water like I have been and at the time of purchase I did not notice any blisters at all.  Fred's (shop) explained the process exactly as you are with sanding the entire hull and grinding the blisters then letting them dry and fill sand again an gel coat etc.  It sounds like a pretty in depth process well beyond my skill set and time.

AZdmont - before you put them on (if possible) try to get a video of your boat planning out before and after - that way you will really be able to tell! I was able to tell the difference to where I switched my prop to a higher pitch as well for more top end speed).  Also when I was searching - Dicks Sporting goods online seemed to have the best price at the time.  Have any pictures of your boat? I saw you had links previously but I'm not able to click on them as it shows an error? I'd love to see it as I'm anxiously waiting for mine to come back home!  I'll be sure to take pictures and show you all the updates!

 

 

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On 6/6/2019 at 12:26 PM, AZdmont said:

Thanks Alan. You and I have the same boat so your experience convinces me I need them!  The boat takes a good amount of time to plane up.    My next upgrade will be a wakeboard tower.

 Sorry you have to spend all those $$$ to fix the hull.  Ugh.

Appreciate it AZdmont - before you put them on, if possible try to get a video of your boat planning out before and after - that way you will really be able to tell! I was able to tell the difference to where I switched my prop to a higher pitch as well for more top end speed).  Also when I was searching - Dicks Sporting goods online seemed to have the best price at the time.  Have any pictures of your boat and your wakeboard tower! What kind are you getting? I saw you had links previously but I'm not able to click on them as it shows an error? I'd love to see it as I'm anxiously waiting for mine to come back home!  I'll be sure to take pictures and show you all the updates! Also here is a link to a video from Nauticus smart tabs 

 

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Blisters really aren't that big of a deal. Never had them on a chap, but on my current sailboat my wife and I just repaired about 200 of them. Some small, some the size of my head. Basically what happens is water permeated the gelcoat and deteriorates the outer layer of hull laminate. The fix is easy but time consuming. Simply, grind the bad material out, apply a few layers of biaxial cloth wetted out with EPOXY RESIN, then fair with epoxy mixed with silica, and sand smooth. Boats left in the water should then have an epoxy barrier coat applied and bottom paint. 

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My 1985 350/260 Merc carbed, with a 21 pitch SS 4 blade, at about 4100 rpms, top out around 48 mph. 

That gave me the best performance in all 3 ranges, high med, and low. Along with some over sized Bennett trim tabs.  Denny.

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On ‎6‎/‎17‎/‎2019 at 5:27 PM, 4612alan said:

Hatem - After my first year of owning the boat (also my first boat) I left it in the slip and at the end of the year I did notice the blisters forming but did not think a whole lot about it as I thought that they would disappear after 'drying' out ( I very wrong).  The owner prior to me was an elderly gentlemen that only used it for fishing and did not keep it in the water like I have been and at the time of purchase I did not notice any blisters at all.  Fred's (shop) explained the process exactly as you are with sanding the entire hull and grinding the blisters then letting them dry and fill sand again an gel coat etc.  It sounds like a pretty in depth process well beyond my skill set and time.

Well that's good.  Sounds like they're going to do it the right way that it should be done.  Hence the cost.  If you had the time and ability to shore it up on stands carefully and safely, you could do it yourself but it is a SUPER labor-intensive project to get right.  Then there is also the sanding of the epoxy fairing that is not just for anyone to do.  When you sand a perfectly flat surface like a wall, think of how much of a pain in the asss that is.  Now think what it takes to sand the curving shape of a hull!  Much more difficult and you need certain flexible tools to sand with and a lot of that needs to be done by hand as well.  That is, after all those blisters have been taken care of once and for all and there are A LOT of them.  Best of luck and keep us posted on the final results.

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7 hours ago, Denny said:

My 1985 350/260 Merc carbed, with a 21 pitch SS 4 blade, at about 4100 rpms, top out around 48 mph. 

That gave me the best performance in all 3 ranges, high med, and low. Along with some over sized Bennett trim tabs.  Denny.

You know something, your post reminded me that I don't think I'm getting maximum performance out of my 8.1VP.  I've never had the chance to really open her up on the ocean because of the lack of smooth water to see how high my RPMs get to and what top speed it reaches which I would like to do.  I hope I get the chance to do it soon while the water is still relatively cool as well as the air temperature to give me the ideal conditions to get the max out of her. But judging on what I've done with her through the years, I feel like I might just barely make it past 4K RPM and maybe a top speed of 38 MPH and not much more.  It's a big and heavy boat and while the motor is also big and producing 375 HP, I feel I should be able to get at least  4500RPM and 42mp maybe even 45.  But judging by how far I was able to push it in the best conditions I had, it didn't seem like I had enough throttle left to get me to those numbers.  Now whether that is normal for that boat and powerplant, that would be one thing. If I should be able to get more, then something isn't right and I need to get to the bottom of it.  If anyone has any ideas as to why it wouldn't perform to its maximum capacity, please share.

 

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