ZO American Skier

dchristmandchristman Posts: 1,021 Mega Baller
Come on @eleeski , challenge the 2019 Ski Nautique threads. This is more exciting news. How about some pictures?
Is it time to ski, yet?
MuskokaKy

Comments

  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 3,429 MM Trick Skier / Eccentric Person
    I'm such a tease. The story will come when this spring gets a little less hectic.

    You are right about the relevance of a sweet little boat in comparison to an outrageously expensive ship.

    FWIW Ken from BC who is my slalom tester preferred the American Skier. Until the engine quit. It's still a project with a ways to go.

    Eric
    dchristman
  • dchristmandchristman Posts: 1,021 Mega Baller
    Will your ZO American Skier have micro-tuners when the project is finished? How many of these boats will you be building per year? Will it be ready for 2019?
    Is it time to ski, yet?
  • UWSkierUWSkier Posts: 754 Crazy Baller
    Will you be adding a hydrofoil?
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 3,429 MM Trick Skier / Eccentric Person
    Actually, I will be experimenting with hull modifications. Not micro tuners but an optimized slalom add on. It's original hull is optimized for tricks so that baseline will be the start point and an integral part of the project.

    Right now, I'm stuck on keeping the engine running...

    Eric
    dchristman
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 3,429 MM Trick Skier / Eccentric Person
    @UWSkier The foils bolted on the American Skier will be for the amphibious aircraft project.
  • dchristmandchristman Posts: 1,021 Mega Baller
    Have you added a 3rd fin? Should help with tracking for slalom. Factory added it in 1984.
    Is it time to ski, yet?
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 3,429 MM Trick Skier / Eccentric Person
    The driving was different. It did take some driver input. Once I got used to it, I could drive a better pull. It is a lot different from just sitting in the driver seat. Remember, this is a boat from the days of skilled hand drivers. And I used to give great hand driven rides behind it.

    Not sure self driving boats are the only way to improve performance. But I am converting the boat to ZO...

    Eric
    RAWSki
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 3,429 MM Trick Skier / Eccentric Person
    Skied the ZO American Skier again. What a sweet trick wake! Very much like my 2011 MC and maybe the table was a bit smoother.

    The slalom wake isn't up to modern standards. At least at Lisa's speeds there was a big rooster tail. She preferred the 2011 MC. Incentive to continue the hull modification experiments.

    It still needs some work. The engine cover whacked the throttle sensor and broke it. The flooring is a work in progress. ZO still resets every time I shut off the engine. The gas gauge doesn't work. The swim step is slippery (ouch!). Only the driver's seat has new upholstery. Lots to do!

    Not ready to sell the MC.

    Eric
  • DWDW Posts: 1,761 Crazy Baller
    @eleeski : Can't remember, is the ZO accomplished via an engine swap or did you adapt the system to an existing non ZO power unit.

    1. Slalom wake - bondo, screws, aluminum, holes, move fuel tank forward ...
    2. ZO shut off - wire direct to battery
    3. Gas gauge - graduated wooden stick
    4. Swim step - 80 grit belt sander
    5. Upholstery - color coordinated duct tape:)
    Bruce_Butterfieldeleeskiandjules
  • Bruce_ButterfieldBruce_Butterfield Posts: 1,235 Mega Baller
    @eleeski did you put a 4 blade prop on it? That should help with the rooster tail and the slalom pull.
    I had an ‘86 American skier that I loved. Awesome boat in its day.
    DW is right about the wooden gas gauge. I had one for the nights when it was sunset, the gauge was on E, and needed another set without paddling in!
    If it was easy, they would call it wakeboarding.
    eleeski
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 3,429 MM Trick Skier / Eccentric Person
    @Bruce_Butterfield The ZO thinks I have a 4 blade prop but it's still a 3 blade prop. You just threw another variable at the project!

    @DW I purchased a couple of complete engines out of older Nautique 200s. Early Texas boats so no catalytic manifolds. The old engine was a Ford so it took a little work to adapt but it wasn't that hard. Fitting it in the engine box was a pain.

    I need it pretty nice (no duct tape and no electrical gremlins) to get unbiased reviews of my hull mods. And I need to fix the slalom wake without ruining the trick wake.

    My knee isn't quite ready for slalom yet but this is a long term project.

    Eric
  • bigskieridahobigskieridaho Posts: 796 Crazy Baller
    @eleeski Need to see pics of this thing.
  • DWDW Posts: 1,761 Crazy Baller
    edited May 16
    @eleeski : Make your own engine box, I made mine from carbon fiber w/ a Corecell core, tips the scale at 24#, or a nice 41# lighter than the original one, includes padded vinyl and carpet + a parts tray instead of cupholders, also added a cold air intake slot. No need for the gas struts, super easy to lift open.

    I don't think getting hot duct tape glue on your observer could possibly influence a review, you can even do custom striping colors, you can be pretty sure they won't slide off the seat.
  • Bruce_ButterfieldBruce_Butterfield Posts: 1,235 Mega Baller
    @eleeski seriously, the 4 blade prop is the biggest bang for the buck you can get. Call Jody for a recommended pitch. My American Skier had 270Hp vs the standard 240Hp and it was obviously a strong boat. With a 5.7 fuel injected engine and the light weight of that boat, the right 4 blade prop will make a huge improvement in the hole shot as well as knock down the rooster tail.
    If it was easy, they would call it wakeboarding.
    eleeski
  • dchristmandchristman Posts: 1,021 Mega Baller
    @Bruce_Butterfield But how does the 4 blade prop affect the best trick wake of all time?
    Is it time to ski, yet?
  • Bruce_ButterfieldBruce_Butterfield Posts: 1,235 Mega Baller
    @dchristman hopefully no affect on the trick wake. Granted, the mix of prop, hull mods and boats is mostly trial and error with a little black magic thrown in, but in general the prop affects the rooster tail and trick table while the hull shape determines the "wakes".
    If it was easy, they would call it wakeboarding.
  • dchristmandchristman Posts: 1,021 Mega Baller
    edited May 16
    I consider the smooth table a component of that great trick wake. Table is to wake as strap is to sandal, i.e. essential component.
    Is it time to ski, yet?
    eleeski
  • DWDW Posts: 1,761 Crazy Baller
    @Bruce_Butterfield : does your 4 blade comment still hold true with the Acme style 3 blade prop that basically has the same blade area as a 4 blade. If yes I would venture a guess that it is due to # of water piercings per revolution and the slow speed of tricking needs them to churn the wash (table area)? Thx.
  • DWDW Posts: 1,761 Crazy Baller
    Just for Eric, how about a prop project? 3 blade prop modified to see if you can create the desired table via things like serrated trailing edge, blade vortex generators, blade slots. If you need ideas, see a Formula 1 undertray or wing end plate.
  • Jody_SealJody_Seal Posts: 2,350 Mega Baller

    Hobby Boats can be expensive when the hobbyist is limited on their own skill and expertise.


    Bruce_ButterfieldALPJreleeski
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 3,429 MM Trick Skier / Eccentric Person
    @Bruce_Butterfield Keeping the trick wake and table is the basis for the hull mods. The slalom wakes (mostly a spray issue) are terrible at short lines. The new engine balance or the extra horsepower or failing memory of the slower wakes was discouraging that Lisa wasn't happy. Of course, Lisa isn't happy with the whole idea - she loves the "new" 2011 boat with clean heated seats, quiet reliable engines, shiny fiberglass and a trick wake equal to the American Skier. Why did Mastercraft obsolete that hull?

    Trying a 4 blade prop will now be part of the process. (I am concerned about the hole shot. Already the boat jumps out of the water with all that horsepower.) But that's tuning. The hull mods are the radical part. Also somewhat difficult to build. Life is pretty busy and this isn't one of the (Lisa's) top priorities, updates might be slow here. It did take a year to get the motor in...

    @DW I'm building a ski before a new engine cover. But you are right that engine covers are way too heavy. The MC might benefit more from the light engine cover. Another project?!

    Eric
  • Bruce_ButterfieldBruce_Butterfield Posts: 1,235 Mega Baller
    @dw good question. I think the biggest benefit is the larger surface area provided by the 4 blade and I don’t have any experience with the newer large area 3 blades. Definitely a good experiment to add to eric’s list.

    My comment about improving the rooster tail was based on a small sample of friends that put a 4 blade prop on 80’s vintage ski boats that made a significant improvement in the rooster tail and hole shot.
    If it was easy, they would call it wakeboarding.
    eleeski
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 3,429 MM Trick Skier / Eccentric Person
    You guys are killing me! This project is already big enough. I'd have to perform some real data analysis to get good information. Right now, it's just get the boat skiable!

    But props are certainly now part of the journey.

    Looking for pictures. I took some - a while ago.

    Eric
  • MISkierMISkier Posts: 2,084 Mega Baller
    @eleeski, regarding your question about why the 197 hull was replaced, I think it boiled down to 2 things:

    1. Slalom skiers crossing the wake at 22 off while pulling through the gate to 1 ball, from 2 ball to 3 ball, and from 4 ball to 5 ball.
    2. Slalom skiers crossing the wake at 22 off while pulling from 1 ball to 2 ball, from 3 ball to 4 ball, and from 5 ball to 6 ball.
    The worst slalom equipment I own is between my ears.
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 3,429 MM Trick Skier / Eccentric Person
    @MISkier To obsolete a boat that is awesome for deep shortline, great for beginning slalom, awesome for jumpers, great for wakeboarding and arguably the best trick boat ever over a perception of a rooster tail at one slalom length is just sad. But you are probably right.

    Of course, the ZO American Skier hull project is a proof of concept for an idea I had relevant to preserving the MC trick wake. Stay tuned - but don't hold your breath.

    Eric
  • DWDW Posts: 1,761 Crazy Baller
    We all like that 'shiny, new object', notice how much we lavish praise on every 'new' hull design (and pretty much everything else) and everything becomes the best ever. I am not saying we are incorrect, just our continuous desire for or to like the latest and greatest, which many new intros are.

    As for the sending the older hulls to Davy Jones Locker, it is probably due to storage costs meaning required space pushing something else out of the way. Long term outdoor storage certainly does no favors to a fiberglass hull mold same with all the other tooling, molds, etc.
    eleeskiJody_Seal
  • shansen345shansen345 Posts: 148 Baller
    edited May 18
    Companies also don't want their old products competing with their new. New boats cost tons of $$ in research & development.
Sign In or Register to comment.