View Full Version : Merc powered Speedsters
04-06-10, 06:07 PM
I'm thinking about selling our 1998 Sportster 1800 and looking for a smaller craft. The 16 foot Speedster from the early 2000's with the Merc jet kind of appeals to me, but my local dealer told me that they were prone to "plowing" in turns. Anyone out there have experience with this boat good or bad?
04-07-10, 08:07 AM
I don't know of a plowing issue... at least, I've never heard of an issue. The only issue I have is that the Merc powered boats are very expensive if you need parts, and the parts are hard to come by. The power head, and it's parts can be bought from a Merc dealer... but the pump is harder to deal with. Also, there is no parts support from SeaDoo anymore on them.
I personally would go either newer (4-tech) or older. (rotax power)
04-07-10, 08:14 PM
Thanks for the advice Dr. Honda. It's good to know about the lack of BRP support for those powerplants.
04-13-10, 07:13 PM
Mercury still makes replacement parts for them. A few are no longer sold by Mercury, but I've had good luck getting them on eBay and Mercury dealers, often at a discount to Mercury's original prices.
All of the online parts dealers I know of list the SportJets and carry parts for them. There's also a good aftermarket industry surrounding the 2.5L V6 powerplant on which the SportJets are based.
You can still get parts and service for Mercury engines that are 20+ years old and haven't been manufactured for a very long time. No reason to think this series of engines will be orphaned soon.
As for Seadoo, a quick check of WorldOfPowerSports (as just one example) shows that they carry a complete selection of OEM Seadoo parts. Here's the link for my 2001 Seadoo Challenger 2000:
I'm doing a preventive mini-overhaul on the engine and jetdrive this Spring so I've been picking up quite a few components, and I've had no problems finding what I've needed.
Don't get me wrong. I like, own, and maintain both kinds of engines (one Mercury 240EFI SportJet and two Rotax 787's). They each have their place. Don't decide against the SportJet just because it isn't in current production... neither are the 2-stroke Rotaxes!
04-13-10, 08:28 PM
Thanks for your feedback WAJ. As my local dealer BRP marine dealer closed I am faced with no local service for my Rotax engines. The closest dealer is now almost 100 miles distant. On the other hand I have 3 Merc dealers in close proximity - that's why I was considering a Merc powerplant. I've driven Seadoo jets since '97, so I want to stick with the hull and the drive type, but need a powerhead that the locals can work on when problems arise.
04-13-10, 09:05 PM
The model year 2000+ SportJets are based on the 2.5L and 3.0L V6 powerplants that have been the basis for Mercury's outboard lineup for years and years. Literally ANY Mercury certified shop will be able to work on a SportJet even if they've never seen one before. Everything above the jetdrive is a virtual carbon copy of what's inside the outboard cowlings. All of the tools will work... the Mercury digital diagnostic meter plugs right into the same connectors... it's all the same.
As for the jetdrive itself, it's a VERY simple assembly. The service manuals (available online) detail everything. There's really only one special tool that is unique to it, and that's the impeller nut socket - no standard socket is deep enough. The tool is ~$75 from Mercury, or you can weld up one yourself. No shop of any repute is going to be intimidated by the M2 jetdrive.
If you're familiar with the Rotax setup, imagine standing the engine on its back end and putting a set of bevel gears to transition from the vertical crankshaft to the horizontal impeller shaft. That's exactly how the SportJets are laid out. Everything is just bigger because the engine and jetdrive are more powerful (7.25 inch impeller diameter, for example).
Given your situation, I'd be looking for a good SportJet powered Seadoo. You'll be absolutely delighted. We have been, still are, and expect to be for years to come.
04-14-10, 11:05 AM
I love my Merc!
Better Fuel Economy
Better Oil Inj. consumption
Like anything, If you take care of it,
it will last longer.
Mecury has been building Marine Power for some time too....
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