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Old 06-06-2010, 04:13 PM   #1
top_pin_or
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Default Sport Jet Clean-out?

yesterday i was fishing out of chinook landing and got a stick caught in my pump. Anytime i would give it any throttle it would vibrate the whole back of the boat. So we just idled into the ramp. When i got home I got underneath and found a stick that had got past the stomp grate and was lodged in the impeller. I was able to reach it with some long pliers and get it out. Is there any way to fix this with the boat in the water? A friend of mine says there should be a clean-out (top side) that you can access this area. That dont make sense to me thought cause wouldnt that let water in the boat?

Im just conserned that this may happen out in the ocean then what I gotta try to cross the bar on my kicker?

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Old 06-06-2010, 05:00 PM   #2
Nomoreflyguy
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Default Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

It's happened to me. Had to trailer the boat and pry the stick out. Sometime if its small, run it wide open and it will kick itself loose. Other times you might try shutting everything off and it will loosen itself. Hope that helps.
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Old 06-06-2010, 05:15 PM   #3
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Default Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

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Originally Posted by top_pin_or View Post
yesterday i was fishing out of chinook landing and got a stick caught in my pump. Anytime i would give it any throttle it would vibrate the whole back of the boat. So we just idled into the ramp. When i got home I got underneath and found a stick that had got past the stomp grate and was lodged in the impeller. I was able to reach it with some long pliers and get it out. Is there any way to fix this with the boat in the water? A friend of mine says there should be a clean-out (top side) that you can access this area. That dont make sense to me thought cause wouldnt that let water in the boat?

Im just conserned that this may happen out in the ocean then what I gotta try to cross the bar on my kicker?
Yep been there done that! The best solution that I have found is going to Mercury's optional Stainless steel (rock) intake grate! The channels are narrower and don't allow the small sticks and pebbles to get to the impeller! The first year I had my boat, I had the twig in the impeller thing happen at least half a dozen times! Since installing the rock grate 6 years ago, I have not had a problem! You can order them online from Mercury Marine and pick them up at Stevens Marine for around $200.00. For the big stuff like seaweed and grass, shutting the motor off and sticking the bucket in reverse while in motion seems to clean them out quite well!



Also there is no top access clean out on a sportjet!
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Old 06-06-2010, 06:13 PM   #4
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Default Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

I have a conventional inboard jet but still, a couple times a year, get a stick or willow branch etc. in there and it cavitates as you described. My American Turbine jet does have a clean out access (no stomp grate) but I usually motor back to the ramp to deal with it so I won't drop something valuable into the river. On extended trips and out into the ocean, I bring an garden rake (the kind with curved metal tines about 6" long and about 5" wide) to reach up under from the swim deck to clear out kelp etc. My buddy bought a folding stainless thing designed to do the same, but paid $80 for something weaker that doesn't float. Kickers are a good thing. Also, go fast when in crap, not slow, less is sucked up. C.W.
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Old 06-06-2010, 06:33 PM   #5
shawn b
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Default Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

fyi if you open the top side clean out water will come in very quick. if you ever have to open that cover make sure you have your boat on the shore put the stern on the shore.....
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Old 06-06-2010, 08:20 PM   #6
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Default Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

I also have the sport jet with the stomp grate, and this has also happened to me a couple of times. I have to say I was glad I wasn't "up the creek" so to speak. Both times it was on the Willamette, and not far from the boat ramp. If this happened upriver on the Clack or Sandy (or any other small river) away from the boat ramp, you would probably need a scuba mask, waterproof flashlight, big lungs, and those long pliers, so you could go under the boat and get that stick out. Until you get it out you have no power to run back down river. I'm thinking now about Pickle's solution and putting on the stainless grate.
Good luck!
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Old 06-07-2010, 05:54 AM   #7
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Default Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

Stainless grate will probably help, I have one since the boat was new 8 years ago but I still picked up a stick that stuck to the impeller a few years ago. Once in 350 hours of big motor running is not bad but we did have to trailer the boat to fix it.
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Old 06-07-2010, 09:39 AM   #8
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Default Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

It happens, I turn off the motor and put the control full forward (reverse housing all the way up). With the reverse housing out of the way I then run my kicker in reverse forcing water to flow in reverse through the turbine housing to flush any debris out. It works 9/10 times, just be careful running in reverse not to swamp your boat .
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Old 06-07-2010, 10:40 AM   #9
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Thumbs up Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

I have had a Nothriver Sportster with a Sport Jet for about 10 yrs now. Almost every year I get something in the intake. I have been able to dislodge this every time by following some advice I read on Ifish may years ago.

It goes like this: using the main SJ motor try to get going as fast forward as possible then simutaniously shut the engine off and turn the steering wheel all the way to the right. So far this has worked for me every time and luckily I have not had to trailer the boat to get it unplugged. It can be a little nerve racking tring to gain a little speed say 10-15mph while it is thumping back there, but it seems to work. I would not run it more than 10-15sec. to get it up to speed. Once I had to do it twice, I think I turned the other direction the second time. Good luck!
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Old 06-07-2010, 10:54 AM   #10
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Default Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

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Originally Posted by ifish4fun View Post
I have had a Nothriver Sportster with a Sport Jet for about 10 yrs now. Almost every year I get something in the intake. I have been able to dislodge this every time by following some advice I read on Ifish may years ago.

It goes like this: using the main SJ motor try to get going as fast forward as possible then simutaniously shut the engine off and turn the steering wheel all the way to the right. So far this has worked for me every time and luckily I have not had to trailer the boat to get it unplugged. It can be a little nerve racking tring to gain a little speed say 10-15mph while it is thumping back there, but it seems to work. I would not run it more than 10-15sec. to get it up to speed. Once I had to do it twice, I think I turned the other direction the second time. Good luck!

Thanks for the info. I dont know if could do that though. It sounded like the back of the boat was going to rattle off anytime i got above idle. I have only owned the boat since september so that was the first time it happened to me.
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Old 06-07-2010, 11:04 AM   #11
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Default Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Norm View Post
It happens, I turn off the motor and put the control full forward (reverse housing all the way up). With the reverse housing out of the way I then run my kicker in reverse forcing water to flow in reverse through the turbine housing to flush any debris out. It works 9/10 times, just be careful running in reverse not to swamp your boat .
Just my 2 cents, but thats a really bad idea. You would need to be very careful not to hydolock your motor. If your kicker is pushing water into the intake it's also pushing water up into the exhaust and possibly into the engine.

There have been a few people that hydolocked their engine by mounting their kicker directly in front of the SJ and ran the kicker in reverse.

Later,

Chris
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Old 06-07-2010, 11:24 AM   #12
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Default Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

I've had this happen one time in 5 years owning my sj. I pulled the grate off with a torx driver & pulled the stick out. Would have been a bummer if I was on some skinny water
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Old 06-07-2010, 11:46 AM   #13
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Default Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

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Originally Posted by cmb1998 View Post
Just my 2 cents, but thats a really bad idea. You would need to be very careful not to hydolock your motor. If your kicker is pushing water into the intake it's also pushing water up into the exhaust and possibly into the engine.

There have been a few people that hydolocked their engine by mounting their kicker directly in front of the SJ and ran the kicker in reverse.

Later,

Chris
Good point, I never considered pushing water into the exhaust. My kicker is mounted on the side and I probably only go 3-4 knots in reverse for a few feet. You only need to get a little flow to push any debris out the open grate. Most of the time it's a small stick or wood chip, it does not take much.
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Old 06-12-2010, 08:40 PM   #14
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Default Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ifish4fun View Post
I have had a Nothriver Sportster with a Sport Jet for about 10 yrs now. Almost every year I get something in the intake. I have been able to dislodge this every time by following some advice I read on Ifish may years ago.

It goes like this: using the main SJ motor try to get going as fast forward as possible then simutaniously shut the engine off and turn the steering wheel all the way to the right. So far this has worked for me every time and luckily I have not had to trailer the boat to get it unplugged. It can be a little nerve racking tring to gain a little speed say 10-15mph while it is thumping back there, but it seems to work. I would not run it more than 10-15sec. to get it up to speed. Once I had to do it twice, I think I turned the other direction the second time. Good luck!

Great idea! I'll try that next time it happens although since I put the stainless grate in I haven't had it happen. I've intentionally trolled thru some little sticks at Detroit near Hoover just to see if any got in there and they haven't.
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Old 06-13-2010, 05:20 PM   #15
HntnFsh
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Default Re: Sport Jet Clean-out?

That is the procedure recomended in the SJ manual.Although I thought it said to turn the wheel all the way to the left.

Hmm.I'll have to look it up.My memory isnt what it used to be.
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