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View Full Version : Buying a used X45 - any significant changes between year models to be aware of?


JagNL
02-07-2016, 05:18 AM
I am in the hunt for a used X45 - I was curious if there were any major/significant changes over the years to be aware of? I'm looking at boats with the 6.0 liter and the 8.1 liter motors as I think the MCV will be underpowered even though I'm at sea level.

I'm currently looking at a 2005 and have the following questions, but would like as much info as possible about the line as 2005 - 2010 are all within my price range:

I saw where someone mentioned there was a change to the hull between 2005 and 2006 and that as a result the newer X45's throw a better wake - any truth to that?
How's the 2005 tower compared to the later ZFt2 (late 2006 to 2010) etc?
How'd the 8.1 perform with the rudder upgrade, did it fix any handling issues?


Thanks in advance for everyone's help! I look forward to joining the Mastercraft family soon!

JohnE
02-07-2016, 09:55 AM
I'm not positive, but I don't think there were any changes in the hull. Which 2005 tower? There were 2. The one used in '06 which was offered in '05 is rock solid from what I've heard.

I'd be looking for the 8.1 if possible.

scott023
02-07-2016, 11:12 AM
No hull change in the 45's production history.

What rudder upgrade are you referring to, and what handling issues? I have an '08, and am not aware if any rudder upgrade. Handling is fine at speed, but marina maneuvering certainly takes an experienced touch.

Hammer
02-07-2016, 11:17 AM
I honestly think the 6.0 is a great motor for the 45. I run very heavy ballast for surfing, we don't wakeboard, and its never struggled at all. I actually propped it down and ended up coming back up to closer to stock. I can actually barefoot behind it. Scary as it takes time to get there, but it will. But obviously there is no replacement for displacement.
I have never heard about a change in hull, but that doesn't mean it didn't happen.
Post a pic of the one your looking at and we could identify the tower and may help with evaluation.

JohnE
02-07-2016, 01:35 PM
No hull change in the 45's production history.

What rudder upgrade are you referring to, and what handling issues? I have an '08, and am not aware if any rudder upgrade. Handling is fine at speed, but marina maneuvering certainly takes an experienced touch.

There was a change in rudder in '06 at MC. It makes a huge difference on some boats. My '05 197 had the '06 rudder upgrade when I bought it in '07. However I'm not sure if that change was throughout the entire lineup - I'm not sure what rudders the others came with. I've really only heard the upgrade discussed with the 190/197.

TX.X-30 fan
02-07-2016, 01:43 PM
There was a change in rudder in '06 at MC. It makes a huge difference on some boats. My '05 197 had the '06 rudder upgrade when I bought it in '07. However I'm not sure if that change was throughout the entire lineup - I'm not sure what rudders the others came with. I've really only heard the upgrade discussed with the 190/197.




I do remember they were shaving the rudders too on some boats, can't remember why..:D

03 35th Anniversary
02-07-2016, 01:52 PM
I do remember they were shaving the rudders too on some boats, can't remember why..:D

Let's not get that SH!T started again!!!

JohnE
02-07-2016, 01:54 PM
Let's not get that SH!T started again!!!

What sh!t? :D

scott023
02-07-2016, 03:25 PM
Here we go...8p

TX.X-30 fan
02-07-2016, 03:35 PM
Let's not get that SH!T started again!!!




Was it like the Amsoil debate...:D

03 35th Anniversary
02-07-2016, 03:45 PM
Was it like the Amsoil debate...:D

I forgot about that one....I'll put on a set of coasts with a pair of jams, pop a fish oil pill and think back!!!

JagNL
02-07-2016, 06:27 PM
Thanks for all of the great replies. I've attached some pictures of the boat where you can see the tower.

A few more questions:


The boat also has some gel coat damage on the bottom (everything else looks to be in good shape), any idea what is would cost to fix (see pictures)?
The boat doesn't have bower filler cushion - was that even an option in 2005? Is it hard to make one and does it require any brackets? It's also missing the sundeck filler pad - I would assume that is pretty easy to re-create (any idea on cost)?

The gauge clusters are yellow - is there a way to put a different color gauge face in like you can in a car?

I've seen mention of a "jump seat" option, what was that?


Thanks for all help!

JagNL
02-07-2016, 06:35 PM
No hull change in the 45's production history.

What rudder upgrade are you referring to, and what handling issues? I have an '08, and am not aware if any rudder upgrade. Handling is fine at speed, but marina maneuvering certainly takes an experienced touch.

Thanks for info on the hull, I was thinking whoever posted that was wrong as I hadn't ever read anything on MC changing the hull design.

Referring this this regarding the rudder:
http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=25947

JagNL
02-07-2016, 06:40 PM
I honestly think the 6.0 is a great motor for the 45. I run very heavy ballast for surfing, we don't wakeboard, and its never struggled at all. I actually propped it down and ended up coming back up to closer to stock. I can actually barefoot behind it. Scary as it takes time to get there, but it will. But obviously there is no replacement for displacement.
I have never heard about a change in hull, but that doesn't mean it didn't happen.
Post a pic of the one your looking at and we could identify the tower and may help with evaluation.

Thanks for the reply! Honestly my preference was/is the 6.0 as it seems to be thought of as the more reliable engine, has catalytic converters, and I'd imagine would easier to work on since it won't take up as much space in the engine compartment. I'm in Texas so the 6.0 should be plenty for me sine I'm sea level, but I'd take the 8.1L i the right boat as well (and that's in the one I'm currently looking at). Pics of the tower above. BTW I read the thread on your X45 you restored, that boat looks amazing and you did fantastic work!

stevenbratt
02-08-2016, 12:00 AM
I have an '05 x45 with the 6.0

The tower can feel kind of wobbly when hitting chop but it's been solid enough for the two years I've owned it.

The 6.0 is enough motor for surfing and wakeboarding. I had to re-prop though.

I also do not have the fill in cushions. The bow won't be hard to make just a piece of starboard cut to fit than cushion and vynl. As much as I want the stern cushion to make a sunpad. We are walking through way to much. I even removed the middle seat cushion in the rear.

The gel can be repaired. Your dealer should be able to give you a quote or shop that they use.

All in all its a solid boat with tons of room and storage.

scott023
02-08-2016, 01:14 AM
Thanks for the reply! Honestly my preference was/is the 6.0 as it seems to be thought of as the more reliable engine, has catalytic converters, and I'd imagine would easier to work on since it won't take up as much space in the engine compartment. I'm in Texas so the 6.0 should be plenty for me sine I'm sea level, but I'd take the 8.1L i the right boat as well (and that's in the one I'm currently looking at). Pics of the tower above. BTW I read the thread on your X45 you restored, that boat looks amazing and you did fantastic work!
I have had the 8.1 for 7 years, with zero issues. I know many others with the L18, and haven't heard any negative dealings with any of them either. I don't think you can go wrong with the big block.

Keith2230
02-08-2016, 11:23 AM
For what it's worth I have the same model tower on my 2006 X-30 and I think it's pretty solid. It's certainly stronger than the previous gen towers.

As for the instrument cluster I've not heard of anyone cracking them open and replacing the faces. You could certainly replace them with red or a later gen white but I'm sure that would get pricey very quickly.

willyt
02-08-2016, 12:06 PM
Thanks for the reply! Honestly my preference was/is the 6.0 as it seems to be thought of as the more reliable engine, has catalytic converters, and I'd imagine would easier to work on since it won't take up as much space in the engine compartment. I'm in Texas so the 6.0 should be plenty for me sine I'm sea level, but I'd take the 8.1L i the right boat as well (and that's in the one I'm currently looking at). Pics of the tower above. BTW I read the thread on your X45 you restored, that boat looks amazing and you did fantastic work!

hold on - an 05 with Cats? indmar didnt start catting the 6.0 until 2009, this a replacement engine?

the rudder upgrade was across the entire line, I would go ahead and upgrade it on any older boat.

MC25
02-08-2016, 12:25 PM
I have had the 8.1 for 7 years, with zero issues. I know many others with the L18, and haven't heard any negative dealings with any of them either. I don't think you can go wrong with the big block.

8.1 has had a few problems, more so than most of the other engines. I looked at a star with the 8.1, and was told to "run away". I know yours is holding up well, but we did have a member here have to replace his 8.1 with like 150hrs on his.

willyt
02-08-2016, 12:53 PM
8.1 has had a few problems, more so than most of the other engines. I looked at a star with the 8.1, and was told to "run away". I know yours is holding up well, but we did have a member here have to replace his 8.1 with like 150hrs on his.

i've been advised to do the same - it's very interesting because i don't believe they have that sort of reputation in cars.

JagNL
02-08-2016, 01:39 PM
hold on - an 05 with Cats? indmar didnt start catting the 6.0 until 2009, this a replacement engine?

the rudder upgrade was across the entire line, I would go ahead and upgrade it on any older boat.

No sorry my mistake - I thought all renditions/years of the 6.0 had catalytic converters. The one I'm currently looking at is a 8.1l and it most definitely doesn't have cats.

scott023
02-08-2016, 01:39 PM
i've been advised to do the same - it's very interesting because i don't believe they have that sort of reputation in cars.

Odd. I can't recallEver reading about somebody on here that has had problems with it, and can't find anything with a search either.

MC25
02-08-2016, 01:57 PM
Odd. I can't recallEver reading about somebody on here that has had problems with it, and can't find anything with a search either.

http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=54215

Heres what I was talking about

I have no experience with them just to be clear and not cloud the thread with hearsay. just what my service guy said who i trust very much!

rgardjr1
02-08-2016, 01:58 PM
Odd. I can't recallEver reading about somebody on here that has had problems with it, and can't find anything with a search either.

Here are a couple I saw:

X-45 600 hours
http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=51837 Edit:Looks like this was the boat Aric posted a link about

X-Star with 321 hours that had motor replaced-Florida boat so I don't think it was winterization issue:
http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=55744

JohnE
02-08-2016, 02:21 PM
Odd. I can't recallEver reading about somebody on here that has had problems with it, and can't find anything with a search either.

I remember reading about some problems with the 8.1 on here. But I also remember one particular member who had more experience with them than any of us and swore by that motor for the bigger MC's.

scott023
02-08-2016, 03:23 PM
Here are a couple I saw:

X-45 600 hours
http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=51837 Edit:Looks like this was the boat Aric posted a link about

X-Star with 321 hours that had motor replaced-Florida boat so I don't think it was winterization issue:
http://www.mastercraft.com/teamtalk/showthread.php?t=55744

I missed those, thanks. One was oil starved, can hardly fault the motor for that. Two, in gosh knows how many MC have produced with the 8.1, does not warrant a tag of "more so than most of the other engines" though. Pretty sure there have been more issues posted about both the MCX and LY6 on here.

Forrest-X45
02-08-2016, 05:40 PM
As others have mentioned no hull changes with the X-45. The L18 is a great engine just had a bad rap in the early years for mostly piston issues. It was due mostly to improper engine break-in or not checking oil levels which ran them dry. Hence the Indmar oil viscosity weight and capacity change. Which neither are necessary if the oil level is properly checked.

The 45 never had a rudder change, just a rudder plate in the 2009 time frame. Only X-45's with L18 had the issue where the prop wash/water dynamics would destroy the gel coat directly behind the rudder plate up to the transom. MC warrantied boats that had the issue and sent out an updated rudder plate which became a factory part in the MY 2009 timeframe.

JohnE
02-08-2016, 06:46 PM
I remember reading about the prop wash/ gel issue now that you bring it up.

JagNL
02-10-2016, 04:42 AM
How does the 2005/early 2006 tower compare the later 2007-2010 towers? Do they both rattle/shake/wobble over chop or are they pretty much the same save for looks?

JohnE
02-10-2016, 08:30 AM
How does the 2005/early 2006 tower compare the later 2007-2010 towers? Do they both rattle/shake/wobble over chop or are they pretty much the same save for looks?

The 2006 tower debuted in 05 as an optional tower. From what I have heard it is very solid. The first '07 towers were not solid enough until an added support arm was added on each side which really tightened it up. You will notice that the add-on braces had a round profile whereas later towers with braces from the factory were a flatter profile

JagNL
02-12-2016, 12:46 AM
The 2006 tower debuted in 05 as an optional tower. From what I have heard it is very solid. The first '07 towers were not solid enough until an added support arm was added on each side which really tightened it up. You will notice that the add-on braces had a round profile whereas later towers with braces from the factory were a flatter profile

Weird I've never seen any pics of an 2005 with any other tower. Are you saying the tower on the one in the pics I posted was an optional tower?

JagNL
02-13-2016, 02:21 PM
Bump - trying to figure what tower is on the pictures I posted a few pages back if there were two types of towers in 2005.

Footin
02-13-2016, 02:41 PM
Saw this 245VRS with ballast system at my dealer, seems like a pretty good deal:

http://www.bhmtrilakes.com/Boat-For-Sale/13530/2007-Mastercraft-MariStar-245/

rgardjr1
02-13-2016, 02:44 PM
Bump - trying to figure what tower is on the pictures I posted a few pages back if there were two types of towers in 2005.


That is the correct tower for that year of boat. I believe that that style of tower was available for 2005-2006. My guess about where the "optional" comes from is that it may have been possible to get a New Dimension tower in 2005. This tower is built using a smaller diameter tubing and I think the clamping board racks would be fixed and not rotate like the ones on the tower you posted pictures of. The tower you posted pictures of was the latest and greatest available at the time the boat was built.

JagNL
02-27-2016, 05:45 AM
Well I was getting ready to go see that 2005 X45 with the 8.1 L18 this next week and buy it if it checked out, guy ended up selling it to his buddy at the last second ( :( ) so now I'm back in the hunt.

While I'd prefer the 8.1 L18, obviously there are more X45s out there with the LY6 engine. I had a couple of questions:

1.)How's the LY6 do with the boat loaded full of people and ballast? Anyone ever experienced it struggle? I boat at sea level here in Texas so it should be at full power in that regard. I know you can prop it down but I'd prefer not to if possible as I don't want to increase full consumption.

2.)Does the LY6 consume more than the L18 and if so is it a significant difference?

3.)I read some stuff about the LY6 overheating? is this a major issue, and are there any other known major issues with this engine? Would parts be easier to obtain for the LY6 than the L18?

3.)Any issues buying a Salt Series boat? This next one I'm looking at is a Salt Series with the LY6. The trailer isn't galvanized and looks to be in excellent condition so I'm not sure it was ever used in salt (and the area it's being sold in is not near the coast FWIW). If it was used in salt should I stay far away? Should I expect to pay significantly less for a Salt Series boat? Are they harder to re-sale?

4.)This is a boat (2007) with the newer tower but I noticed it doesn't have the tower braces - are these still available from the dealerships or somewhere else? Are they difficult to install?

Thanks for continuing advice!

JohnE
02-27-2016, 10:18 AM
I can't comment on every question, but if the trailer was used in salt (at all) it will likely be very noticeably rusted. If it looks ok, I doubt it was used in salt.

The SS option should make the boat worth more for resale IMO. I know I'd pay more if I were in the market.

I'd imagine the tower braces are still available, and I don't think they are a difficult install.

scott023
02-27-2016, 10:33 AM
In real world testing done at our lake, the LY6 does use more fuel under very similar working conditions than the L18. Tested with Najaf for wakeboarding and surfing, the L18 used about one and a half GPH less.

Hammer
02-27-2016, 03:13 PM
Reproping is the answer. The new props are much more efficient. I have tons more low end and didn't lose but a few mphs on the top end.

Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk

JagNL
02-27-2016, 06:09 PM
Reproping is the answer. The new props are much more efficient. I have tons more low end and didn't lose but a few mphs on the top end.

Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk

Have you ever had your LY6 struggle when heavily ballasted and loaded with folks? Did your fuel efficiency/gph suffer when you re-propped? What do you typically get gph wise?

JagNL
02-27-2016, 07:57 PM
For good measure - how's the LQ9 vs. the LY6? I know it was a short lived motor in this series, if read that all of it's torque was in the upper range? Anyone else have any input on that engine?

Hammer
02-27-2016, 11:20 PM
Have you ever had your LY6 struggle when heavily ballasted and loaded with folks? Did your fuel efficiency/gph suffer when you re-propped? What do you typically get gph wise?
Never checked the fuel efficiency.
The 2241 has never struggled. We don't wakeboard. We do surf with well over 2k lbs over factory and 12+ people in the boat with no problem.
I have to assume the fuel usage went down as this prop just works so much better and I didn't lose much to end with so much more bottom end.

Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk

stevenbratt
02-29-2016, 12:55 PM
For good measure - how's the LQ9 vs. the LY6? I know it was a short lived motor in this series, if read that all of it's torque was in the upper range? Anyone else have any input on that engine?

I have the LQ9 with a 2241 prop. The only time it struggled to get on plane was wakeboarding with 2-3k lbs of ballast and a full fuel tank. Took about 10 seconds iirc. The wake was nutty though. Otherwise the engine has done everything I've asked of it. No complaints here.

JagNL
02-29-2016, 01:30 PM
I have the LQ9 with a 2241 prop. The only time it struggled to get on plane was wakeboarding with 2-3k lbs of ballast and a full fuel tank. Took about 10 seconds iirc. The wake was nutty though. Otherwise the engine has done everything I've asked of it. No complaints here.

Thanks for weighing in! Any issues or has it been a pretty maintenance free motor? How many people did you have onboard when you had the 3k lbs of ballast and full tank?

stevenbratt
02-29-2016, 01:53 PM
Thanks for weighing in! Any issues or has it been a pretty maintenance free motor? How many people did you have onboard when you had the 3k lbs of ballast and full tank?

We had 3 adults and 4 kids I think. It also could have been the KV? Setting on my perfect pass wasn't set right for that amount of weight.

Pretty much maintenance free aside from the normal sessional stuff. There was a coolant bubble I had to burp when I first got it. Not sure how it got there or if it was the dealer or whoever that did a coolant change but I got it figured out.

JagNL
03-26-2016, 01:12 AM
So I have a deposit on the 2008, going to give it a second close look over tomorrow and if all looks good I'm bringing it home with me. Had a quick question - this boat sat in a lift its whole life and obviously had a good amount of sun exposure. It looks like the black part of the inlays that say "Mastercraft" are faded. You can see it in the picture below. Are these parts of tower anodized when they were made or are they inserts? Any product that could bring them back to black?

God help me I already have MCOCD and I don't even have a MC yet.

rgardjr1
03-26-2016, 02:29 AM
They are anodized inserts. They are pretty thin gauge so I don't think you can remove them to have them redone. Mastercraft by design has the black inserts available. They used to have them available in different colors so you might ask if you want to change things up.

scott023
03-26-2016, 10:44 AM
They are anodized inserts. They are pretty thin gauge so I don't think you can remove them to have them redone. Mastercraft by design has the black inserts available. They used to have them available in different colors so you might ask if you want to change things up.

You're spot on. Those can't be taken off without bending them. When you order new ones from MCBD, they sent removal instructions to drill a hole in the insert, they also sent a tool to pry out of with once the hole is drilled. The last set I ordered from them was powder coated.