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View Full Version : New Mastercraft Quality Concerns


wshedd
04-29-2012, 06:41 PM
I have been a MC owner for near 10 years now. I have a 96 PS190 that I have been extremely pleased with. I have never had any problems, only had to do normal maintenance, never been stranded on the water and the boat is still in good shape. But, I have a family now and I am tired of hearing the wife gripe about room when we take the boat out. We visited our local MC delaer over the weekend and are considering the X-14v so that we get more room without totally sacrificing a slalom wake.

The upholstry in these new boats does not look like it will hold up. We looked at one boat with less than 50 hrs on it and it was garage kept (so they say). The upholstry was extremely worn and even slightly faded. The sales rep mentioned that upholstry was cheap to replace. Thats not the answer I was looking for when considering an $80k boat. Also, the manual tower is pretty time consuming and aggrevating to let up and down.

I left and visited Malibu. IMO Malibu has a much higher quality interior. They also have no carpet in the storage areas, which I thought was a great idea. Their mnual towers are very simple to operate and take no time to let up or down.

With that being said, I am not trying to start a war here. I would much prefer to buy a mastercraft, since that is what I have grown to love over the years. But I am very concerned about the appearance of the boat 10 years down the road. Just seems to me that I would be paying more for less.

Does anyone have any experience with the newer boats? Any thoughts or opinions? Also, if I am overlooking anything you know of with the Malibu, I would like to hear that as well.

Appreciate any help.

mikeg205
04-29-2012, 06:44 PM
second thread this week asking what to buy - mastercraft or something else.... I look forward to the responses.

93Prostar190
04-29-2012, 07:52 PM
Ok, I'll bite .... I am certainly a brand loyalist in many aspects of my life cars, oil, wine, board shorts, boats and more.

I have owned Supra, and 2 MC's, and I have skied behind many boat and really appreciate them all .... Ok how is that for a big preamble?

My 93 Prostar was one of the best built boats I ever had.

My 2008 214 had a few defects from the factory (dash covering was not quite right, leaky fins bolt) ... All handled promptly by the dealer ..... No issue. Boat runs great ..... And the interior is holding up super well. I cannot say if I would had any issues with a 2008 from another brand.

I think Malibu has done a great job with their tower innovations over the years. Good point.

I do like carpet in my storage compartments .... It does get wet. If I put in really wet stuff ....

I find seats, interior rigidity, windshields, hulls, and many other aspects of an MC to be first rate when compared to many boats out there.

The billet used in the 4 point towers is world class and the rigidity of those towers is great

I collapse mine by myself and is no problem. Especially since I am more worried about tower performance when it is up. I could not be happier with the build quality and design of my MC.

I am not sure exactly what you saw, but the newer interiors do have some funky materials, textures.

I think MC is a great quality boat ...... They perform as advertised ..... They have had bumps along the road, but so has every other manufacturer .......

Ski them, ride me, compare and be true,to yourself ... Buy the boat that you want to buy ....... I hear the 214v is a heck of a boat.

Good luck and post more of your impressions.

mrm2083
04-29-2012, 09:09 PM
The only quality issue I have with MasterCraft is the thread in the upholstery and covers. It completely sucks. Tige, Nautique, and Supra are all using Gore Tenara thread which has a lifetime warranty and apparently. This is one area where Mastercraft really needs to step up their game.

bcd
04-29-2012, 09:22 PM
I think both are Mastercraft and Malibu are top notch. I also think if it's a boat, it's going to have issues. I'd factor in your local dealer support into the decision. A good dealer standing behind you if (read "when") you have issues, can make a huge difference.

Diver14
04-29-2012, 09:26 PM
The only quality issue I have with MasterCraft is the thread in the upholstery and covers. It completely sucks. Tige, Nautique, and Supra are all using Gore Tenara thread which has a lifetime warranty and apparently. This is one area where Mastercraft really needs to step up their game.

The problem I have experienced with Gore Tenara thread is that it does not stretch. This can cause the thread to cut the vinyl. I just got rid of a 2011 Nautique and experienced this on two separate occasions. If someone steps on the cushion on the seam the vinyl can shift and flex and when it does and the thread doesn't it can cut the vinyl. Definitely strong but it has its issues as well. Just my 2 cents.

jhall0711
04-29-2012, 11:53 PM
Ski them, ride me, compare and be true,to yourself ... Buy the boat that you want to buy ....... I hear the 214v is a heck of a boat.

Good luck and post more of your impressions.

Man does it make me immature if I had to read that typo about three times to make sure what it said...:rolleyes:

swatguy
04-30-2012, 12:09 AM
Here is my thoughts. First both are quality boats. Usually when it comes down to the choice between these two mfgs the wakes are the ultimate deal beaker. They are very different in characteristics. I really don't care for the Bu wakeboard wakes, however that is all personal preference not a one is bigger than the other. I prefer more of a vertical, poppy wake. However I really like their ski wakes. Even on their v drives they are soft to me.

As far as quality .....here goes. I think MC quality just isn't what it used to be. Part of that is all the gadgets and gimmicks they are concerned more about than pure functionality. However their vinyl these days is top notch in thickness and quality. The issues with vinyl that appear these days is part on all newer boats. They have such intricatestitching patterns with the diamond stitching and aesthetics that is just leaves room for unraveling. It plagues a majority of the newer boats by all mfgs. To me the simpler the better. The more stitch designs the more stress in those places and more prone to tearing and stressing over time. MC still has top notch vinyl though these days.

Its funny you should bring up the tower. Malibu has nailed it on simplicity and ease of use. MC still can't get it together in over 6 yes of issues. Their towers are absolutely awesome with all the billet and logos, but they are plagued with issues of sway and band-aids. Even the newer designs areexperiencing issues and need recalls and updates. Malibus Titan was simple clean and issue free as are their new evolutions. They are solid and blow MC's away in the ease and quality. Again MC just refuses to take the to.e and design a tower that is problem free even after 6 yrs.

MC also has huge issues with their ballast timers in 07-10( think I have the right years) while they thought it was slick to prevent people from burning out pumps it was an absolute nightmare for core riders to bypass and trouble shoot issues. Its simple......when I want pump on I turn it on. When I want it off I turn it off. Why make it so complicated. MC did and did it for several years with issues galore .

By has some things that stick out as well. Not sure what ye and model by u are looking but some things that set it apart are the way the seatbases go in a BU. BU screws them in after the mold is done. some people like it so when the have to redo the carpet it makes it easy, it leaves the boat less rigid in those areas. McCain has all their seatbases built into the mold giving you a nice solid one piece structure. I really like that. Again you will find arguments both ways on which is better, but for me a solid one piece design is usually stronger.

BU also uses a honeycomb material in a lot of its boats.not sure if that is the proper term that by uses, but in any event it has been known to dent and flex a lot when under force. While it adds to Bay's quit ride with some sound dampening I think it gives them a weak spot overall.

As far as fit n finish on both I think the JL audio in MC's goats anything that Bay has to offer. Both boats are put together with years of quality boats behind their names. The subtleties and characteristics of both are really what sways buyers. I think a BU rides a bit quieter and has a smoother rock solid feel while your behind the wheel than current MC models do. They use a bit more sound dampening to me it seems. I think current model MC's offer you way more bling and eye popping features/ characteristics than anyone on the market. I feel that's what you are paying more for these days. Its the bling not the quality. In my opinion their quality has taken a step back just a bit because they are more concerned about gadgets and bling as well as being so unique and different in styling. This whole new XStar debochery has also left a bad taste in people's mouths as well.


I come from an MC family having owned in our family around 13 MC's over the years. The 90's yrs were bomb proof. I think all the technology in all mfg's new boats are going to make them problematic down the road. Of my 3 other still boat owning family members I am the only one still owning an MC. They have left the brand in the past 4 yes due to some things I have mentioned above. I think that speaks volumes as the what is going on these days.


My apologies for all the typos. My touch screen on my phone is going haywire and I am out of town. Hope u can make most of it out...again sorry.

93Prostar190
04-30-2012, 07:31 AM
Man does it make me immature if I had to read that typo about three times to make sure what it said...:rolleyes:

Don't sweat it JHall ... just a typo ..... but maybe I need some therapy with my inner demons trying to come out.8p

Back to the quality issue ....

I do think simplicity blended with functionality are important ..... it results in reliability. I realize alot of the reliability of boats over the years has come from the powerplants. Newer dash designs make me nervous sometimes. I personally opted against the VDIG in 2008 ... I am a simple guage type.

Ironically, most of the same/similar powerplants can be found in most inboard boats (I know Ilmor is now in MC but they are still building user base, and data for this quality discussion. so far so good ...)

On some of the tower sway discussions, I can't help but think that MC needs to make lighter cans. I love the billet cans but they weigh alot ..... 4 of them with 4 speakers ... yikes.

I think the 4 point towers have been pretty darn good ... I like BU towers but I have personally "rocked" the tower and see sway in those as well. I feel it is clear that MC has to respond and build a 2 point tower and it maybe got released to the field too soon.

As to the comment that some fellow boat owners switched away from MC. I can't discount that ... but in my case many of my friends and skiers have actually switched to MC from other brands after being in my 93, and 2008. 4 converts in the last 5 years from people I ski with .....

Curious to see more people weigh in ...

Fab
04-30-2012, 08:06 AM
I have to agree on the upholstery being more and more complicated and causing issues...about tower i can't really say but one thing is sure : wake/ski/surf racks on malibu's boats are just a joke compared to the rock solid MC racks (ZFT3 tower), even on their last 22 MXZ, the racks look so cheap compared to their tower, won't hold long with two wakeboards when boats is shaking on the waves...

FourFourty
04-30-2012, 08:39 AM
As for the upholstry in the new MCs- I have not had any issues. I didn't notice any fading either. I love the fact that I don't burn my arse on it!

As for the electronic gadgets- I didn't have any problems with mine, except for not liking the chartplotter...... If you think that MCs have more problems than Bu's with the electronics, you would be wrong. Tons of issues with malivue and the keyless start. This stands to reason, considering that Medallion Instruments makes the gadgets for MC and Bu.

I have toured both factories twice. I can tell you, that from an engineering perspective, MC is a better built boat. That being said, I didn't see anything wrong with the Malibu's construction....

mrm2083
04-30-2012, 08:52 AM
In terms of the hull there is no comparison between a MasterCraft and a Malubu. The MC is built like an offshore boat while the Malibu is built like a lake boat.

I also hate that MasterCraft has gotten so into gadgets and bling. I still think the best tower is the one on my 06. It is simple, strong and doesn't sway. Do people really need hydraulics on their towers? Since I boat in salt water I am used to center consoles and when I bought my boat I felt that of wake boarding boats it was the closest thing to a center consoles. One piece fiberglass floor, all the metal is anodized aluminum instead of chrome or polished aluminum like on a Malibu or nautique which pits, simple dash with regular gauges, etc.

In my opinion they are trying to make inboards to much like cars. It's a boat and should look, feel and act like a boat. Not a car. Go back to standard gauges, ballast tanks that you know are empty because the water shoots out of the side (I really find ballast gauges to be pointless), standard seating arrangements instead of all those new gimmicky flip up and down seats and transoms, and loose the overdone bling.

barefoot
04-30-2012, 10:06 AM
I thought that the new interior served two purposes...clean-ability and so you don't burn your a$$ every time you sit down.

cf_koch
05-01-2012, 10:17 AM
Since you have asked about the interiors, I will say that the upholstery in our 2006 shows no sign of wear or fading. The stitching appers to be holding up very well also. I can not speak for the others on this forum but the upholstery quality is better than other boats that I have owned.

kskonn
05-01-2012, 11:19 AM
I have an 2011 X2 with 270 hours, interior is awesome, not hot, easy to clean etc... I opted out of the gadgets I went with a classic dash with toggle switches. boat has been flawless so far. My Buddies malibu has been pretty flawless with the exception of his decals falling off.

mramerman@gmail.com
05-01-2012, 12:02 PM
We bought our 2010 x14v new. There was a fairly decent list of issues that came up the first year that frustrated us from a “quality delivery” standpoint including:

*2 VDIGS replaced
*Shower not working / shower only produces scalding hot water (still is not working properly)
*Piston on ski locker coming free of its mount
*Trailer winch mounted at slight angle causing strap to fray
*Dash lights not working
* Maybe it was three VDIGS (IMHO manual gauges rule).

The service manager commented, “it takes a year to get these boats really dialed in.” Both my wife and I have felt very frustrated having spent nearly $80k on a boat and the fact “the details” were not ironed out--not to mention the dozen or so trips to the dealer to get our “punch list” resolved.

Knock on wood, we seem to have less frequent issues as time has gone by (making me wonder if buying a 100 hour + boat might be a better bet). We now have 100 hours and our interior is beautiful with no sign of wear (the boat is stored in doors when not in use).

This is my second MC, moving from a ’97 PS190 (it was also gorgeous, well maintained and preserved). We have friends with similar boats (Nautique, Malibu) ---similar year / set-up. Ours always feels much higher quality and without question, throws the better wake (by a long shot).

Tri4X2
05-01-2012, 12:31 PM
Ok I will bite..... I hate doing this but I might as well,

I put all the boats though the paces just two years ago. MC came out on top for what "OUR" family wanted. CC builds an amazing boat with great lines and great craftsmanship. Bu on the other hand always had us feeling like they where trying to "over bling" the boat to make up for things that where lacking.

Personally this is what I did not like about the BU's

-Carpeting, although they have changed that since I bought my boat. When we looked at it they still had glue down carpet and not snap in

-Setting ; we always felt the MC had better seats and a much better fit and finish to them.

-Storage compartments drove me crazy: Bolted down and not carpeted. I personally like my carpet in the compartments. Not only does it give it a better look, but it is quieter with stuff bouncing around in it.

-the MC and the CC both felt better on the water. My wife refused to drive the Axis and felt highly uncomfortable in rough water. The BU and the Axis made her feel uncomfortable with all the noise inside the boat on rough water not to mention the entire boat rattled. These where new boats by the way.

We bought a new 2010 X2 from TSR here in the Austin Area and could not have been happier. The dealership here in Austin that sells the BU probably turned me off even more. I don't think I would ever buy a boat from those guys from our personal experiance with them. They where over bearing, cocky, and never had anything good to say about another boat. They slammed MC and CC and in not as many words told me I would be an idiot NOT to buy their boats. TSR and Chris from Mastercraft set us down, talked to us as people, and gave us some info that allowed us to make a INFORMED decision about our purchase

I have not had any problems other than spider cracks around the tower, which have been fixed and routine checks while owning the boat. When I bought the boat it had set in Houston at another dealership. The Drivers seat and the cushion right behind where faded, and are being replaced. We knew this when we bought the boat, and they have made it right. We have had a great experiance with MC and are so very glad to be apart of the family.

sp00ky
05-01-2012, 02:02 PM
Ok, I'll bite .... I am certainly a brand loyalist in many aspects of my life cars, oil, wine, board shorts, boats and more.

I have owned Supra, and 2 MC's, and I have skied behind many boat and really appreciate them all .... Ok how is that for a big preamble?

My 93 Prostar was one of the best built boats I ever had.

My 2008 214 had a few defects from the factory (dash covering was not quite right, leaky fins bolt) ... All handled promptly by the dealer ..... No issue. Boat runs great ..... And the interior is holding up super well. I cannot say if I would had any issues with a 2008 from another brand.

I think Malibu has done a great job with their tower innovations over the years. Good point.

I do like carpet in my storage compartments .... It does get wet. If I put in really wet stuff ....

I find seats, interior rigidity, windshields, hulls, and many other aspects of an MC to be first rate when compared to many boats out there.

The billet used in the 4 point towers is world class and the rigidity of those towers is great

I collapse mine by myself and is no problem. Especially since I am more worried about tower performance when it is up. I could not be happier with the build quality and design of my MC.

I am not sure exactly what you saw, but the newer interiors do have some funky materials, textures.

I think MC is a great quality boat ...... They perform as advertised ..... They have had bumps along the road, but so has every other manufacturer .......

Ski them, ride me, compare and be true,to yourself ... Buy the boat that you want to buy ....... I hear the 214v is a heck of a boat.

Good luck and post more of your impressions.

Well said!!

gts-20
05-01-2012, 03:49 PM
My $.02

We have right at 100 hrs on our boat. The vinyl has held up very well. We have only had a few minnor fiberglass/gelcoat issues that MC had fixed under warranty, and a failed ballast pump, fixed under warranty as well.

When we bought our boat new in 2010, the boat had been sitting outside at the dealer for a long time . Most all of the "issues" we had in the first year of use were due to this, but MasterCraft told us during the purchase process not to worry, that they would take care of any problems, and they have been true to their word, and with great service from TSR, handled all of our concerns, including replacing a slightly worn/faded engine box vinyl skin.

We use our boat in a lake that gets compared to the Gulf of Mexico, when it comes to rough water. Lake Conroe has seen plenty of days with +/- 3 foot waves and our MC has come through without a scratch, which is more than I can say for a few of our friends with lesser brand boats.

I think a lot can be said for MC's dealer network as well. Having a great group of people to back up a product after the sale, in addition to great initial quality, makes all the difference to us. Our dealer, Texas Ski Ranch, has gone out of their way to make us feel like part of the MC family, and they aren't even the dealer that sold us the boat. The service team, and even the owner, know us by name when we we come in. We trailer from Houston to San Marcus and back each time we need service and are happy to do it.

jhall0711
05-02-2012, 03:55 PM
Questions about Material used for interior check out this link at 6:15....


http://waterskimag.com/ski-boats/2011/03/29/video-mastercraft-factory-tour/

captain planet
05-02-2012, 06:24 PM
:popcorn::popcorn::popcorn::popcorn:

My mouth is watering.....either because I can't wait to jump in...or I'm going to get sick again.

Fast50dad
05-02-2012, 07:25 PM
:popcorn::popcorn::popcorn::popcorn:

My mouth is watering.....either because I can't wait to jump in...or I'm going to get sick again.

I resemble that comment...

93Prostar190
05-02-2012, 09:13 PM
:popcorn::popcorn::popcorn::popcorn:

My mouth is watering.....either because I can't wait to jump in...or I'm going to get sick again.

Dive in, the water is good.

Speaking of good water, you can't beat the wake on my MC!

captain planet
05-03-2012, 02:48 PM
Dive in, the water is good.

Speaking of good water, you can't beat the wake on my MC!

My 98 vs. your 214? Skiing them back to back would be interesting. Maybe at the Buckeye Bash?

If I dive in here, I'll be accused of drinking the Kool-Aid, especially when comparing malibu to MC. How bu is considered in the same breath as MC (or CC for that matter) is confusing to me, especially from a construction standpoint. I think Tige may give bu a run for their money in the construction department, but I would have to research to back up that claim.

captain planet
05-03-2012, 02:49 PM
I resemble that comment...

GREAT picture!!!!

93Prostar190
05-03-2012, 03:39 PM
CP --- you are welcome to ski behind my 214 anytime ... compared to your 98? I bet the wake is not quite as good .... but we can "argue" about it over a cold frosty beer and no one gets hurt.

I did notice that the "bump" at 22 off gets softer on my boat if I put a Ron Paul sticker on the windshield or ski.

Just saying ....

captain planet
05-04-2012, 02:11 PM
CP --- you are welcome to ski behind my 214 anytime ... compared to your 98? I bet the wake is not quite as good .... but we can "argue" about it over a cold frosty beer and no one gets hurt.

I did notice that the "bump" at 22 off gets softer on my boat if I put a Ron Paul sticker on the windshield or ski.

Just saying ....

I know. That Ron Paul sticker is so full of delegates that it lowers the bow and raises the transom to flatten out the wake. I'm going to try that trick this summer. ;)

Double D
05-04-2012, 02:22 PM
Love it!!! :) :)


[QUOTE
I did notice that the "bump" at 22 off gets softer on my boat if I put a Ron Paul sticker on the windshield or ski.

Just saying ....[/QUOTE]




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