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Old 10-13-2017, 10:12 AM
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X5 Predator Muffler Repair - Help!

Started my off-season work on our "new to us" 2000 X5 with the predator engine. PO said there was never an issue with the boat... Took out all of the interior to run a new steering cable and a deep clean. I found a "putty-like" substance on both mufflers. There is minimal leaking in the bilge after a playing on the lake / slalom skiing.

My question: Do you think I can remove this putty substance (and how) and re-wrap with fiberglass strips? Could I just cover the putty with the fiberglass repair?

Oh the fun of new to us boats! Thanks.
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Old 10-13-2017, 11:20 AM
waterlogged882 waterlogged882 is offline
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Originally Posted by tjrowbot View Post
...My question: Do you think I can remove this putty substance (and how) and re-wrap with fiberglass strips? Could I just cover the putty with the fiberglass repair?

Oh the fun of new to us boats! Thanks.
My opinion from experience;

Remove the putty then put epoxy resin-soaked fiber cloth (fiberglass). I say this because the resin will not adhere to the putty, however use your own judgement, but I'd remove it if practical. Just use any tool or gadget that will dig it out or a Dremel tool to grind it out. Otherwise, if it is hard and not going anywhere, cover a larger area with cloth. Your call there.... but I'd be inclined to get the old putty off.

Be sure and wet your cloth (use an aluminum baking tin from the Dollar Store to wet the cloth), then lay it in place. Much easier than trying to wet it out with a brush with dry cloth in place.

One thing to consider as well...when you scrape the putty off and potentially find a crack or opening that exceeds 1/16" - 1/8", I'd consider filling the crack with epoxy, but not liquid epoxy as what you will use to wet your cloth. Take the same epoxy mixture (liquid) and add silica to it (takes quite a bit) to thicken it up to a stiffer consistency. Use a respirator mask when around silica. Transfer that thickened mixture to a plastic baggie, roll that mixture (say a 3 oz. mixture) to the corner of the baggie and cut the corner of the baggie off. Now you have a dispenser to place the epoxy onto the crack. Use a stick or something with a radius to smooth out the surface of the epoxy, as this will allow for a much better fit when you lay the cloth down. Fiber cloth does not like to conform to rough, jagged, or uneven edges or protrusions. Think ahead on this step. At this point, if you have laid in epoxy filler instead of cloth, you likely would not need the cloth unless you just feel so inclined. The thickened epoxy will work well. I have even seen people use MarineTex epoxy but I lean toward using a heavier duty application with epoxy resin. Cloth is optional.

So a few other precautions and preventative maintenance tips (if I may?......thanks since you asked).

1) Remove the risers from the exhaust manifold. This makes it 100 times easier to work on the mufflers and disconnect / reconnect the hoses. That said, you'll need two new riser gaskets for that Chevrolet engine. Order those.

2) Here's the other part of the story; Check the internals of each hose while you're there. Also look at the hoses' external markings. Back in the day, the hose manufacturers stamped the year date onto the hose. If it is old (OEM) I'd consider replacing it all. No better time to do it than now. The rear part of the exhaust hose can be inspected (with the mufflers out) with a flashlight from the outside looking in.

Caveat; you'll think you need to remove the fuel cell. Not necessary unless you want to. What you get into there is a hardened and aggravating piece of fuel filler hose. No need to remove that as you can loosen all of the fuel cell's brackets and the hose clamps on the filler hose. I tell you, that thing is such a pain on the barbed connecting ends, it is easier to cut it off than trying to salvage it with disassembly. So.....loosen the clamps, remove the hold-down brackets and rotate the fuel cell in place. Work around that. Much easier than messing with the filler hose.

3) When you put this all back together, assemble the new hose starting back at the transom at the exhaust port outlets. Work toward the engine with reassembly. Then install the newly repaired mufflers. A liquid soap helps all of this slip back into place very nicely.

4) Stop here for a moment. Now put the short pieces (from the risers to the mufflers) onto the riser, especially if you are using hard wall hose. Soft wall is a little more forgiving but not much at all. Now that the risers have the short hose attached, slip the hose onto the muffler.

Caveat; do not tighten any clamps except the ones at the transom. This will allow for a little movement along the way to get a final fit.

5) Now take the riser(s) and lay it onto the manifold (new gaskets too) and bolt those down to the exhaust manifold. A wire brush on a drill will clean the surfaces very easy compared to scraping, etc. Harbor Freight for a cheap but effective set of wire brush wheels.

I typically put the gaskets on dry but with this particular engine I use a little gasket sealer (thin layer) to fill a slight dip in the surface so that water does not leak out onto my exhaust manifold.

This may seem a little unusual but you will thank me later for not having to bend or fit the new (or reused OEM) hose onto the riser with it in place. Make this an easy job with this approach. You need to inspect the internals anyway, so take a few minutes to make life easier. You'll need to buy a 12.5' stick of hose (it is hard to find in one-foot increments, although a few places sell it by the foot). I paid US $167 for a 3" dia. x 12.5 foot long stick. Found it on Amazon. Sold by Atlantic Boat. I get my gaskets from Discount Inboard Marine.

I also did not cut the zip ties that hold the blower hose onto the starboard side of the exhaust. I slipped the existing hose right out of them (and new back in) using the same zip ties.

While you are there and have everything out, put in new fuel line too. No better time.

While you're there, put in new Gortex packing in your packing gland there on the driveshaft. No better time. It will be next spring (or some time on the water) when you can test and tighten but put it in now and leave the packing gland nut loose and tighten upon sea trial. Once you compress the packing and have not tested for the proper placement of the packing with the gland nut (to tighten) the packing compresses and is not great about reuse.

While you're there and the engine cover is off, pump out the old transmission fluid and add new to it. The engine cover gets in the way with it attached. No better time. I use Dex III for the Velvet Drive 1:1 / 1.5 quarts although the manual calls for 2 quarts. Your mileage may vary.

My preference is to use Never-seize on all threaded and slip-on hose connections.

A few photos I'll share.... I just did this this week to my daily driver... I had 1992 hoses and they collapsed internally, so I chose to replace them all due to another concurrent issue.

.
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Last edited by waterlogged882; 10-13-2017 at 02:14 PM.
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Old 10-13-2017, 01:46 PM
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Thank you very much for the great information and maintenance! You gave me a laundry list and I appreciate it!

Dumb but important question: If I removed the muffler from the hoses (from riser to muffler and muffler to exhaust tip, would I not be able to install the muffler back on easily? It seems as if I must remove the risers just to get the hoses back on. Very tight squeeze?

Thank you again.
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Old 10-13-2017, 02:05 PM
waterlogged882 waterlogged882 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjrowbot View Post
Thank you very much for the great information and maintenance! You gave me a laundry list and I appreciate it!

Dumb but important question: If I removed the muffler from the hoses (from riser to muffler and muffler to exhaust tip, would I not be able to install the muffler back on easily? It seems as if I must remove the risers just to get the hoses back on. Very tight squeeze?

Thank you again.
With that approach (mentioned above), you get into the predicament of (typically) placing in the last short run of hose between the muffler and riser. That is a pain in the a$$ (I have been all down that road many times) so from my lessons learned, I lift the riser, make it easier to re-install (as well as take apart). That is why you leave the hose clamps loose until very last. You will find that a little adjustment from tip to tail will be in order to set the riser back down, but I promise it is worth the little bit of additional work. Quite like cutting the filler hose (but you shouldn't need to in this case).... much easier and time saving.....

It is a tight squeeze especially with new hard wall hose....getting it off and getting it back on.

Trust me now and thank me later..

I also prefer to replace the Allen head screws with hex head screws. I like using a combination wrench more than an Allen wrench.

.
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Last edited by waterlogged882; 10-13-2017 at 02:20 PM.
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Old 10-13-2017, 04:21 PM
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Waterlogged- Much appreciated. I didn't think of the hose install situation you stated and I will take it from your experience. I will remove the risers (after new gaskets arrive) and follow up with any issues.
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Old 10-13-2017, 04:26 PM
waterlogged882 waterlogged882 is offline
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Originally Posted by tjrowbot View Post
Waterlogged- Much appreciated. I didn't think of the hose install situation you stated and I will take it from your experience. I will remove the risers (after new gaskets arrive) and follow up with any issues.
Put the short piece onto the riser first (easier to handle while completely disassembled) then slip it down over the muffler, then lay the riser down last.

best luck...

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