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88 Prostar Revival!

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  • 88 Prostar Revival!

    Hi All,

    I'll use this first post to introduce myself as well as give a back story on my new boat (and yes, I'll of course provide the obligatory pics )

    As for myself, long time tinkerer with all things motorized, I'm fairly mechanically inclined and rarely hit a wall that I can't figure out with projects like this (albeit often with the help of forum members on sites like this ) My biggest disadvantage is that I don't have heavy duty tools or ideal work space, never stopped me, but has often slowed me down.. While I'm good with things like cars and motorcycles I never owned a boat until last year so haven't had a lot of experience working on them.. I've never done internal engine work on anything but a motorcycle beyond carb rebuilds either, so while I'm fairly good - when it comes to anything that's proprietary to boats, I'll likely need help.. Last spring I managed to figure out how to pull an outdrive, do water pump impeller, bellows, shift cable, starter etc.. And while we had fun last year with the Searay I/O, last week I discovered a crack in the block due to not properly winterizing. (tried but the new starter failed and prevented me from being able to suck up enough antifreeze into the engine.)
    So last week I found my new boat - an 88 Prostar 190. Old school Prostars and Nautiques have always been my fav boats - today all newer boats look the same, there's something about the character these older boats had that I always preferred but the Prostars with the jetfighter windshields have always been my fav.. I found this gem on craigslist for a steal due to the fact that the previous owner believes the block is cracked somewhere due to not winterizing. It has 450 hours and lived it's life in a garage - so while it does need some vinyl work on the top sections, it is remarkably solid otherwise. The engine is very clean and appears to have been well maintained. I cannot find any trace of an external crack on the block but there is water in the oil and there are 2 freeze plugs that are missing. I do see faint traces of rust stains at the heads. I figure, best case - maybe there's a small chance there's a blown headgasket - otherwise I'm assuming an engine swap is in order.
    I'll add some pictures of the engine later today, I noticed yesterday there's a 1:5 velvet drive tranny!!
    So as of now, the plan is this:
    Attempted to repair the crack on my SeaRay (tons and tons of prep and JB Weld) - whether or not it works, I'll be selling it to fund the repairs on the Mastercraft. I'll know by tomorrow afternoon if the repair will hold. I'll tear the heads off the new boat and take a peek prior to considering it scrapped. If replacing, I've been looking at Marine long block 351Ws on Ebay for around $1500. Is the rotation standard on these boats?
    Lastly, best I can deduct, I think this boat has been out of the water for up to 5 years - is there anything I should consider a must to replace? I'm hoping to reuse as many of external engine components as possible. Any tips advice etc anyone can offer is appreciated. I'll add interior engine pics later.
    Thanks!!!
    Attached Files
    Last edited by XavierSPL; 05-18-2013, 07:29 PM.
    My restoration thread here!!

  • #2
    Looks like good times. Welcome.

    Now the fun part begins, spending money to "make it yours". This can be expensive retail therapy.

    Look at the bright side, you found the #1 site on the internet for Mastercraft junkies and enablers.

    Keep the hive updated.
    Last edited by Lumbergh; 05-18-2013, 01:43 PM.
    1991 ProStar / 351W with 1:1 Velvet Drive

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    • #3
      Welcome to TT and great first boat. I just sold an '88 PS190 this spring. Throw an electronic ignition in that old girl so you won't have to mess with points and such. Lots of information here and plenty of people willing to help.
      https://badges.fuelly.com/images/smallsig-us/302328.png

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      • #4
        Nice! Where are you I'm NH? I'm up in VT with an 89 PS 190 myself. You'll love the boat. Is it a NH boat originally?

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        • #5
          Thx for the words of encouragement and words of welcome!! If anyone has a recommendation for an electronic ignition I'll grab one (as well as any other must haves).. Catamount, the boat's in Weare on a private lake, I believe it is originally from NH, up in the lakes region.
          My restoration thread here!!

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          • #6
            Had an 88 same colors in the lakes region, but traded in in mass. Is that the original trailer? Mine was white.

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            • #7
              Nice boat!! I've got the 88 version of that boat- same color, same trans. Fun boat, and for a first boat, I've found it very easy to work on. I don't know a whole lot- sounds like my level of expertise is about where yours is, but I'm happy to help in any way I can.
              Greg

              Comment


              • #8
                Www.skidim.com for discount inboard marine is a good source for parts and they are a small company with nice people that will answer the phone and provide support in getting the right part. Jim at BAWS on this site is a good dealer to get stuff from also and especially decals if needed.I recommend to check/replace things that dry out like impeller, gaskets, shaft packing, etc. be sure to lube things up including steering cable and rudder. Change fluids obviously.
                1993 Blue Stars and Stripes Prostar Powerslot 351HO
                Mastercraft: Face It - If you are not a good skier behind this boat, you are not a good skier.

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                • #9
                  Amazon has the best prices I found on the electronic ignition conversion.

                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Wg2bYPLLpc

                  http://www.skidim.com/products.asp?dept=1113
                  1991 ProStar / 351W with 1:1 Velvet Drive

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                  • #10
                    Im working on getting my year long project one the water. Hopefully a test run at the end of the week. Changing the impeller is a must. Check all the hoses. Shaft packing. Grease rudder. Def get rid of the points, I installed a conversion kit last week and the boat fired up with the first key turn and idled at 600-700 rpm. Your carb may be in need of a rebuild, but if youre getting a new motor, you may just want to get a new carb. I rebuilt mine, nothing to it really, just be patient.

                    The obvious things to do are changed fluids in motor and tranny.

                    Good luck!

                    Here's my restoration thread.

                    http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/...ad.php?t=47157

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      So it's been a busy week with other projects - mainly finishing up building a new dock (first time for me, pic attached) as well as staying focused on getting the Searay running - so far the JB Weld block repair seems to be holding. Keeping my fingers crossed as the extra $$ it'll fetch will add to the budget for the Mastercraft.
                      My plan is to drop a couple freeze plugs in the block, change the fluids and turn her over to see what happens prior to considering the engine scrap.. I'm planning on buying this breakerless conversion kit as I currently have the screw down prestolite cap based on you guys' suggestions.
                      I'm trying to keep doing homework on best engine for the buck assuming the worst case scenario. I'm having a hard time though: I've read many threads regarding engine rotation and still am not 100% on it. I know there were different options available for engines in 88, but did the rotation change? I'm assuming at this point it's a LH rotation (standard) but without being able to crank the engine over, are there any dead giveaways? It is a black painted engine which I read was LH, there is nothing stamped on the prop.
                      I see a lot of good deals on 351 engines locally and have read all the debate on automotive engines in boats, I would assume that if I bought one, I'd change out the freeze plugs for brass and head gaskets for marine (I'm most likely going to be adding GT40P heads anyways) and all external engine components would be marine of course. When considering this option, is there anything else I should think about? Some people claim there are other differences but I've read quotes from PCM/Indmar that suggests that actually do nothing with internals outside of maybe a different cam for performance/load..
                      This Sunday I'll be dropping the 2 freeze plugs back in - still not sure why they were removed, and turning her over to see what I see. There is a bit of water in the oil but after sitting for a few years I'm thinking that may or may not mean anything, could just be condensation..
                      As for he carb - There's a old school local guy here that's been rebuilding carbs out of his house for like 50 yrs that I've been going to forever. $120 flat fee for 4 barrels and he does an amazing job everytime. I'll be sending it off to him for sure..
                      Attached Files
                      My restoration thread here!!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        So I had a bit of time today to tinker with it a bit and my plan to this point before considering the engine scrap was to replace the 2 missing freeze plugs, add a bit of oil to each cylinder and if the engines turns smoothly manually then run a compression test on the cylinders.. As soon as I started to clean out the freeze plug holes I noticed a lot of metal shavings (see pic). I'm at a loss for why this stuff is in there.. It's very crumbly and "carbon-y"
                        Any ideas what this would indicate? If any significant amount of this ran through the circulator pump should I consider that toast as well? Curious if I could just flush this stuff out of the jacket and move forward or is it indicative or something bigger?
                        Attached Files
                        My restoration thread here!!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Got a bit more done today and unfortunately discovered the engine is seized oh well, I bought the boat assuming it would need a swap, frustrating thing is the person before has definitely been wrenching on it and it would've saved me a bit of time had he just been honest about it..
                          I pulled the raw water pump and the thermostat housing and found the same heavy corrosion I found in the water jacket at the freeze plugs.. Is this typical or was this boat in acid? I knew the impeller would be shot and it was of course, little pieces of it missing but the impeller housing seems fine, spins tight and freely - can't think of any way to test the seal though..
                          My big concerns now are what will be salvagable.. the intake manifold is very corroded where I pulled the thermostat housing. I'm afraid I'll find the same thing in the exhaust manifolds - should I be concerned here? Can these be dipped or something to restore the interior areas? Swapping the intake wouldn't be so bad - could easily get an aftermarket or something.. Here's some pics:
                          Attached Files
                          My restoration thread here!!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by XavierSPL View Post
                            Got a bit more done today and unfortunately discovered the engine is seized oh well, I bought the boat assuming it would need a swap, frustrating thing is the person before has definitely been wrenching on it and it would've saved me a bit of time had he just been honest about it..
                            I pulled the raw water pump and the thermostat housing and found the same heavy corrosion I found in the water jacket at the freeze plugs.. Is this typical or was this boat in acid? I knew the impeller would be shot and it was of course, little pieces of it missing but the impeller housing seems fine, spins tight and freely - can't think of any way to test the seal though..
                            My big concerns now are what will be salvagable.. the intake manifold is very corroded where I pulled the thermostat housing. I'm afraid I'll find the same thing in the exhaust manifolds - should I be concerned here? Can these be dipped or something to restore the interior areas? Swapping the intake wouldn't be so bad - could easily get an aftermarket or something.. Here's some pics:
                            My thermostat housing looked worse, I sand blasted and had it powder coated black, looks new. Plan on new exhaust manifolds, but they may be salvageable too. You may be able to free and save the motor, soak in oil.
                            Last edited by nkorep2; 05-31-2013, 05:11 PM.

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                            • #15
                              You can test the seal in the water pump housing by filling it with water and seeing if it leaks out the back. If it does, the seal is only a $16 part and easy to replace.

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