PDA

View Full Version : Low Hours Boat - Tower Crack!


Overdraft
08-27-2012, 10:48 AM
My fourteen year old says to me yesterday as we are crossing the lake "that thing looks weird" pointing to the tower. To my utter amazement I notice a nasty crack extending three quarters around the tower.

The boat is a 2007 yet only has about 100 hours on it. I don't want to even think about that thing breaking and landing on someones head in my boat!

Should I be speaking to MC HO about this? I won't even take the boat off the lift now - certainly won't tow anybody with it.

willyt
08-27-2012, 10:50 AM
thats uh... not right.

talk to your dealer

BrooksfamX2
08-27-2012, 11:00 AM
Yep, not a good thing..........

onejdgreen
08-27-2012, 11:03 AM
I'm no metallurgist, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night and that is not a good thing... Can you post a picture that shows where on the tower the crack is? Kind of hard to tell where it is.

TayMC197
08-27-2012, 11:36 AM
What all have you towed from the tower?

46Chief
08-27-2012, 12:53 PM
if thats an NDT tower, It is another I am not impressed with their welding, expecially considering you pay a premium for them. That crack failed due to the weld/welding process.

Cobra Rob
08-27-2012, 01:07 PM
Since it's an 07 just curious, do you have the tower braces?

mikeg205
08-27-2012, 01:09 PM
I would contact your dealer and MC HO. I would have a local welder look at it as well...just to make sure the crack can be nailed down to failed weld....looks like a little oxidation at the well crack...IMO

ntidsl
08-27-2012, 01:14 PM
Take the tower off and takle to dealer. No reason not to use the boat.

bjames
08-27-2012, 01:34 PM
Looks like the tube cracked and not the weld (except for the very bottom peice). That is strange for sure, you think it would take a lot of force to crack and aluminum pipe like that. Not sure if MC is obligated to fix something like that since its out of waranty, unless they have a lifetime garantee on the towers.

willyt
08-27-2012, 01:34 PM
how is he going to use it if he doesnt have a tower? 8p

nauti-dreamer
08-27-2012, 01:39 PM
A little JB Weld and Duct Tape outta do the trick!

(I'm sure that would be covered under warranty of 'materials' from the vendor.)

Overdraft
08-27-2012, 01:45 PM
Nothing other than my the usual - kids on tubes - wakeboarders. The weld is situated about half way up the top above the ski rack...and the crack is clearly above the weld on the tube and not the weld. I rarely use the tower - heck boat has a little over 100 hours over 5 years....the crack has really spooked me as to what "could of happened"...

Cobra Rob
08-27-2012, 01:50 PM
Nothing other than my the usual - kids on tubes - wakeboarders. The weld is situated about half way up the top above the ski rack...and the crack is clearly above the weld on the tube and not the weld. I rarely use the tower - heck boat has a little over 100 hours over 5 years....the crack has really spooked me as to what "could of happened"...

No I see what they are saying where it looks like a bad weld stressed the material. Do you have tower braces installed?

Jason.H.
08-27-2012, 02:04 PM
I would never tow a tube from a tower. Seen too many failures resulting in driver and passengers getting hurt and cut and major damage to the boat from a tower or top deck failing due to pulling a tube.

snork
08-27-2012, 02:15 PM
Tubes are bad, tubs are really bad

FourFourty
08-27-2012, 02:39 PM
Nothing other than my the usual - kids on tubes......


Ouch, mystery solved. I am guessing that is what did it..... You wouldnt think towing a tube would be a lot more stress, but it is. I have heard of so many tower failures from that.


Still sucks though. Hopefully you can get it fixed up easy enough!!

TayMC197
08-27-2012, 02:45 PM
Nothing other than my the usual - kids on tubes - wakeboarders. The weld is situated about half way up the top above the ski rack...and the crack is clearly above the weld on the tube and not the weld. I rarely use the tower - heck boat has a little over 100 hours over 5 years....the crack has really spooked me as to what "could of happened"...

Thats how it happened. Pulling tubes is the worst thing you could have ever done. I've seen several towers crack, break, or collapse from pulling tubes. Thats way to my resistance for those towers to withstand. The bigger boats can handle it a little better but the smaller aren't designed for that kind of pull. You are lucky you gel coat and fiberglass didn't give.

The tower is fixable, will you have problems in the future from it.. its hard to tell...

agarabaghi
08-27-2012, 02:46 PM
does it say not to pull tubes from the tower?!

TayMC197
08-27-2012, 02:49 PM
Does it say not to drive in the wrong lane of traffic? If you read the disclaimer for the towers it says not to pull tubes or a cetain amount of weight but who actually reads that stuff? I did cause I was on the toilet bored.

TayMC197
08-27-2012, 02:51 PM
The crack appears to be about half way up near the back brace. That's a flex point.

scott023
08-27-2012, 02:54 PM
We were told, flat out, by the dealer not to pull tubes from the tower...

Traxx822
08-27-2012, 03:02 PM
I will not pull any more tubes from my tower. Thanks and sorry dude. Just tow that puppy to your local machine shop/metal fabricator. And probably $80 and your done.

bjames
08-27-2012, 04:07 PM
Yeah, I remamber seen it published somewhere (but cant remenber) ehere it states that the tower is only for pulling Maximum number of skiers/wakeboards, but not tube. It states that the tubes should be pulloed by the lower pylon or transom eyelets.

ski/hunt
08-27-2012, 05:39 PM
I better tell the fella here in Knoxville that tows 6 tubes at one time from the tower on a PS197----and they are usually teens not little kids!!

sand2snow22
08-27-2012, 05:42 PM
Doesn't it say in that partially pictured warning sticker not to pull tubes. Everybody reads those, right?

Jason.H.
08-27-2012, 05:45 PM
I better tell the fella here in Knoxville that tows 6 tubes at one time from the tower on a PS197----and they are usually teens not little kids!!

Or better yet, don't tell him. If someone is uncaring enough to pull six tubes at once they should have to find out the hard way.

CantRepeat
08-27-2012, 06:07 PM
I would never tow a tube from a tower. Seen too many failures resulting in driver and passengers getting hurt and cut and major damage to the boat from a tower or top deck failing due to pulling a tube.

What? There is no way a tube puts more force on a tower then a wakeboarder does. :confused::confused: We've had this discussion before. I'm sure the crack is not a result of tubing from the tower.

etduc
08-27-2012, 06:11 PM
Ironic, the tower use caution sticker, is right next the crack! :cool:

CantRepeat
08-27-2012, 06:13 PM
And that sticker clearly says you can two recreational towables with the tower and if a tube isn't a recreational towable then what the hell is?

CantRepeat
08-27-2012, 06:14 PM
does it say not to pull tubes from the tower?!

No, in fact is says that you can pull them.

CantRepeat
08-27-2012, 06:17 PM
From the photo it appears there is a hole drill in the tube, for wires, just below the crack. I'd like to see a photo of that area. I would be the crack runs into that area.

Did anyone ever run the board racks into anything??? I would guess that at some point something impacted the tower and started the failure. I would also suggest the weld has nothing to do with the failure. Moreover, looking at where the crack is it failed because of impact and because the weld held. The tower hit something and it failed at the weak point, where the hole was drilled.

sp00ky
08-27-2012, 06:33 PM
What? There is no way a tube puts more force on a tower then a wakeboarder does. :confused::confused: We've had this discussion before. I'm sure the crack is not a result of tubing from the tower.

Exactly I know i pull my boat all over the place wakeboarding but pulling tubers doesn't have the same stress. I'd like to see some pictures not rumors of towers failing with tubers

ahhudgins
08-27-2012, 06:37 PM
I agree that the weld looks like it did it's job. If I had a tower (which I don't now..had one on my PS190) I still wouldn't pull a tube from it. The only ropes I've ever broken were caused by a tube turning upside down. Either the rope snaps or the strap tears from the tube before I could stop the boat, which is why I hate to pull tubes. I've never had a skier or wakeboarder put that much stress on a rope. Skier does a face plant and lets go of the handle.

Now if you just want to pull the kids around and not sling them 4 feet in the air, I guess it's OK to use the tower, but where's the fun in that! :D

mzimme
08-27-2012, 07:06 PM
Exactly I know i pull my boat all over the place wakeboarding but pulling tubers doesn't have the same stress. I'd like to see some pictures not rumors of towers failing with tubers

It's not pulling the tuber that causes stress, it's when the tube flips over and vaccuum sucks itself to the water, and basically submerges itself causing extremely high stress. Ever wonder why tube ropes are thicker? Because they cause more stress when they flip over... Not because some 3 year old riding on a tube is going to snap the rope.

etduc
08-27-2012, 07:13 PM
On a more serious note: If your thinking of fixing the crack, you should consider this. A good welder will want to know:
1) Type of alum. alloy tube(there are hundred of alloys) possibly the mfg of tube.
2) Type welding machine
3) type of alloy -welding wire/rod
4) good luck getting that info, from the mfg. (legal exposure)

Some would simply try a butt-weld. This would require (in most cases) grinding down into the crack, to expose more tube surface welding area. Problem is at the orignal weld, it is extremely stong and hard. Some would simply weld up to, the original weld. A good welder, could do it, but it would take someone familar with welding alloys. You may have to eventually, do the other side.

etduc
08-27-2012, 07:25 PM
Oops, meant to add. Best source to find a professional alloy welder, would a small airport, or air plane service/repair company.

CantRepeat
08-27-2012, 07:50 PM
It's not pulling the tuber that causes stress, it's when the tube flips over and vaccuum sucks itself to the water, and basically submerges itself causing extremely high stress. Ever wonder why tube ropes are thicker? Because they cause more stress when they flip over... Not because some 3 year old riding on a tube is going to snap the rope.

And I'm pretty sure the rope will break long before you can damage the tower.

Lets take a guess on which is stronger, the aluminum tubing or the rope. :rolleyes:

CantRepeat
08-27-2012, 08:00 PM
On a more serious note: If your thinking of fixing the crack, you should consider this. A good welder will want to know:
1) Type of alum. alloy tube(there are hundred of alloys) possibly the mfg of tube.
2) Type welding machine
3) type of alloy -welding wire/rod
4) good luck getting that info, from the mfg. (legal exposure)

Some would simply try a butt-weld. This would require (in most cases) grinding down into the crack, to expose more tube surface welding area. Problem is at the orignal weld, it is extremely stong and hard. Some would simply weld up to, the original weld. A good welder, could do it, but it would take someone familar with welding alloys. You may have to eventually, do the other side.

I think you are over thinking this.

The welder is clearly TIG and doesn't matter. The skill of the person doing the weld will be far more important.
There's only a few types of aluminum that bend without cracking, probably 5052.

A good repair on something like this would include completely cutting the tube in half and inserting some sort of inner support that is welded to the outer tubing. But to be honest I wouldn't want it repaired. I'd want that part replaced.

soacj
08-27-2012, 08:24 PM
Lets take a guess on which is stronger, the aluminum tubing or the rope. :rolleyes:

I'm no engineer, but given the leverage on that piece of tube, that very well could be the case when compared to the tensile strength of a tube rope. Even more so given the HAZ surrounding the weld... Could anyone with some know how in that area comment?

And OP, please excuse me in advance for what might be a complete conspiracy theory, but what's the back story on the missing tower parts you were looking for in this post?:

http://mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=37016

As long as we're all playing internet sleuth/engineers, might as well go all out!

______________
Jay

CantRepeat
08-27-2012, 08:36 PM
I'm no engineer, but given the leverage on that piece of tube, that very well could be the case when compared to the tensile strength of a tube rope. Even more so given the HAZ surrounding the weld... Could anyone with some know how in that area comment?

And OP, please excuse me in advance for what might be a complete conspiracy theory, but what's the back story on the missing tower parts you were looking for in this post?:

http://mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=37016

As long as we're all playing internet sleuth/engineers, might as well go all out!



______________
Jay

If anything, I would think, the tower would bend before cracking like that. The tow ropes seem to be about 1000 to 1500 lbs rated.

Cracking from HAZ normally happens in the throat of the weld and not to the area around them. Let me add, I agree there surely is some fatigue issue in that area.

I'd like to see a larger area photo and for sure the top part of the crack near the hole.

Cloaked
08-27-2012, 08:55 PM
. Even more so given the HAZ surrounding the weld... Could anyone with some know how in that area comment?The HAZ is typically associated with a higher heat-induced process such as SMAW (arc welding) processes. The mig or tig process usually is less inductive to a HAZ per se. The HAZ extends out from the toe of the weld to maybe 1" - 3" give or take with molecular distortion (or not), depending on how the heat is applied, distributed, and any pre-weld or post-weld heat treatment.

The throat of a weld is mainly all weld filler material within the weld joint. HAZ is mainly concerned with the base material during the metal cohesion process.

That material failure developed from a stress riser point, whether it be weld induced or material defect induced.



.

soacj
08-27-2012, 09:14 PM
The HAZ is typically associated with a higher heat-induced process such as SMAW (arc welding) processes. The mig or tig process usually is less inductive to a HAZ per se. The HAZ extends out from the toe of the weld to maybe 1" - 3" give or take with molecular distortion (or not), depending on how the heat is applied, distributed, and any pre-weld or post-weld heat treatment.

The throat of a weld is mainly all weld filler material within the weld joint. HAZ is mainly concerned with the base material during the metal cohesion process.

That material failure developed from a stress riser point, whether it be weld induced or material defect induced.



.

And "know how" enters the room...Thanks for the explanation sir!

________________
Jay

Cloaked
08-27-2012, 09:20 PM
And "know how" enters the room...Thanks for the explanation sir!

________________
Jay
Not looking for thanks, just sharing experience from many years of engineering in the nuclear power industry where welding is present on a daily basis...

I like welding and metallurgy, and concrete....

kyfooter
08-27-2012, 09:35 PM
You guys seem to know your stuff when it comes to analyzing metals and welds.

So I'll just comment on the original post...Overdraft, I would be extremely ticked. The only way that tower should fail should be from hitting an overpass, not anything related to normal water sport activities, be it wake boarding, tubing, or skiing. No one on this site should be accepting of a failure such as this. I get that tubes, when submerged can cause tremendous stress...but enough to split aluminum tubing? Now way. Take it to the dealer, then to HO if you get nowhere. If you still get nowhere, I would be finished with brand loyalty.

These are not aftermarket towers slapped on Bayliners. These are supposed to be the highest quality products on the finest tournament boats built. These repeated tower failures should be unacceptable to anyone representing the MasterCraft brand.

Good luck.

CantRepeat
08-27-2012, 10:16 PM
Yeah, I'm no engineer but I do a crap ton of welding in both mig and tig in ferrous and non ferrous metals.

http://mikesell.net/shop.jpg

soacj
08-27-2012, 10:29 PM
Cantrepeat, your shop/garage looks eerily similar to mine. I've even got the same Tom Wood sticker! Safe assumption you've got a rock crawler or two?

My welding is limited to mig welding ferrous metals and while I've welded for years on a hobby basis, I'd still describe my experience "as just enough to be dangerous"!

_____________
Jay

ahhudgins
08-27-2012, 11:50 PM
I'd feel more comfortable going with Cantrepeat's solution and have the joint welded back with an inner sleave. I wouldn't trust the cracked joint.

And I'm going to state the obvious: George W. Bush is somehow to blame for this.:rolleyes:

Overdraft
08-28-2012, 11:16 AM
You guys seem to know your stuff when it comes to analyzing metals and welds.

So I'll just comment on the original post...Overdraft, I would be extremely ticked. The only way that tower should fail should be from hitting an overpass, not anything related to normal water sport activities, be it wake boarding, tubing, or skiing. No one on this site should be accepting of a failure such as this. I get that tubes, when submerged can cause tremendous stress...but enough to split aluminum tubing? Now way. Take it to the dealer, then to HO if you get nowhere. If you still get nowhere, I would be finished with brand loyalty.

These are not aftermarket towers slapped on Bayliners. These are supposed to be the highest quality products on the finest tournament boats built. These repeated tower failures should be unacceptable to anyone representing the MasterCraft brand.

Good luck.

You are absolutely correct. I am not happy in the least. That boat has 102 hours on it and it is 5 years old...looks like the day it was delivered. To think that my family and friends were sitting under that thing on a sunny day while we are touring around on the lake - and potentially coming down on their head - is beyond frightening. I don't typically (if ever actually) tie my tube to the tower...maybe once or twice to be honest...but I have NEVER been told not to and given the severity of this crack, MC better start posting blatent warning on the tower if this is indeed the case. I don't remember ever reading it anywhere in the manual or posted on the boat - only here on this board this past Monday....but what I do remember about reading the sub-standard manual was all the RED PRINT warnings about various things causing serious injury....it was funny actually looked like it had been written by their lawyers...but I don't remember that one. If these towers are engineered that finely, there better be one heck of a warning sticker pasted to that blasted thing warning folks about having their kids sitting under them - against the use of towers with tubes...??? I would think the rope would fail before the tower but I am learning about this.

I researched the heck out of the brands..MC, Nautique and Malibu...and chose MC thinking it represented the best quality and value for my money. Overall the boat has been pretty good moreso considering this was the first year of the X14. I have had one other tower incident (it came apart on me when an ankle fastener fell out!)...but that was a minor incident compared to this. My boat stays on a lift all the time and trailered to and from storage - sorry no low bridges or structures to run into all you black thinkers. This is, by my thinking, a life threatning defect which should be taken very seriously by MasterCraft and their supplier(s). I have brought my servicing dealer into the discussion who has contacted MasterCraft for their action. We'll see what they say.

BrooksfamX2
08-28-2012, 11:38 AM
Good Luck............

maristardd
08-28-2012, 11:47 AM
On the reverse side of the pole, does the crack continue through the wire hole?

ntidsl
08-28-2012, 12:04 PM
And what was up with the parts missing on your tower in 2010? Could that have caused the issue? The crack doesn't look new!

madcityskier
08-28-2012, 12:12 PM
You are absolutely correct. I am not happy in the least. That boat has 102 hours on it and it is 5 years old...looks like the day it was delivered. To think that my family and friends were sitting under that thing on a sunny day while we are touring around on the lake - and potentially coming down on their head - is beyond frightening. I don't typically (if ever actually) tie my tube to the tower...maybe once or twice to be honest...but I have NEVER been told not to and given the severity of this crack, MC better start posting blatent warning on the tower if this is indeed the case. I don't remember ever reading it anywhere in the manual or posted on the boat - only here on this board this past Monday....but what I do remember about reading the sub-standard manual was all the RED PRINT warnings about various things causing serious injury....it was funny actually looked like it had been written by their lawyers...but I don't remember that one. If these towers are engineered that finely, there better be one heck of a warning sticker pasted to that blasted thing warning folks about having their kids sitting under them - against the use of towers with tubes...??? I would think the rope would fail before the tower but I am learning about this.

I researched the heck out of the brands..MC, Nautique and Malibu...and chose MC thinking it represented the best quality and value for my money. Overall the boat has been pretty good moreso considering this was the first year of the X14. I have had one other tower incident (it came apart on me when an ankle fastener fell out!)...but that was a minor incident compared to this. My boat stays on a lift all the time and trailered to and from storage - sorry no low bridges or structures to run into all you black thinkers. This is, by my thinking, a life threatning defect which should be taken very seriously by MasterCraft and their supplier(s). I have brought my servicing dealer into the discussion who has contacted MasterCraft for their action. We'll see what they say.

Sorry to hear of your troubles. When it "came apart", what exactly happened, and what were you doing at the time? I wonder if this incident could have placed an unpedicted stress on your tower at an unintended angle. Particularly if you were towing someone when this happened. I'm no type of expert, just curious if this might have been the beginning of the current problem.

petermegan
08-28-2012, 06:52 PM
Not a metalurgist (CLOAKED is your man their) but wonder you whether live on a corrugated gravel road or have been on any trips with wavy bitumen? I would have thought it possible for this sort of damage to be a result of lots of minor stresses put on the tower as much as pulling a tube. Which I don't see a problem with by the way. I am not making any excuses for Mastercraft just looking for possible reasons. I have seen towers shaking badly when following on horrible roads. Hope this isn't a repeat from a previous post. Good Luck.

sp00ky
08-28-2012, 07:24 PM
And I'm pretty sure the rope will break long before you can damage the tower.

Lets take a guess on which is stronger, the aluminum tubing or the rope. :rolleyes:

It's also interesting that you can't google broken or failed tower photos. If numerous posters know of towers "failing all the time" WHERE ARE the pics? You can find photos for anything else.

DemolitionMan
12-01-2012, 02:37 AM
What's New!!!!

Overdraft
02-03-2013, 02:39 PM
UPDATE.....

Got my invoice for the repair on Friday. The dealer passed on the parts "at cost" and apparantly reduced the hours on the repair from 11 to 5 - rate at $ 110.00/ hr :) ...total $ 2,400.00 to repair the tower for what in my opinion was a complete and utter defect. MC did not step in and make this right to which I am dissapointed.

So much for brand loyalty. Unhappy

broncotw
02-05-2013, 03:45 PM
I am confused.... There is no way anyone is going to convenience me that a wake boarder has less drag than a tube being pulled in the water.... The wake boarder is skimming across the top of the water and the only real drag would be the initial start.... The drag coefficient of the bottom surface of the wakeboard would be substantially less than that of a tube being pulled in the water... Simple physics.....

AZDave
02-07-2013, 04:44 PM
There is one thing I have seen that could cause this. It happened to me once towing a tuber behind a Sea Ray that had a center pylon( after market). Rider fell out of tube and tube flipped grabbing the water just right (or wrong) as I was whipping around to pick up the tuber. It was like hitting a wall, almost. Rope didn't break but it was a hell of a hit. OK, I know pretty Wally-like but hey, that was back in my Sea Ray days!

O2BESOHUGE
02-07-2013, 05:49 PM
Can You Post Up A Pic Of The Boat And Tower From Farther Away? Thanks!