Engine Break in

ralral Posts: 1,693 Mega Baller
edited December 2010 in Other Stuff
We are getting our new SN 200 w 5.7 engine next week.

 The recommendation we got was "<!--[if gte mso 9]>





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<![endif]-->It’s ready to roll. But I always take it out going 20 miles an
hour for 2 minutes then give it full throttle for about 2 seconds. Do that a
couple of times."

Everybody does the same?
Rodrigo Andai
[Deleted User]


  • usaski1usaski1 Posts: 716 Crazy Baller
    Ive heard all kind of responses from just use it, to be gentle and just use it, to keep it under x rpm for the first 10 hours. Really, for all engines, for break in, don't go hard on it for the first few tanks of gas, dont just let it sit and idel either. Id say for the first few hours, dont pull a skier. Make sure its warmed up to full operating temp before breaking plane. thats what i'd do. Afer those first tanks of gas, its hammer time though!!
    Mark Turner -- Water skiing changed my life forever.
  • Jim NeelyJim Neely Posts: 291 Baller
    Here's a prvious discussion on this topic

    Engine Break-in

    68" Vapor
  • Jody_SealJody_Seal Posts: 2,434 Mega Baller
    Initial few times on the water it is good to just utilize the boat for a couple of hours at a 2500-3500 RPM range with a few power ups to 4500 and a 10 sec hold then back to the 2500-3500 range again for a couple of hours. This can be done pulling kids, trick skiing and general cruising around the lake. After the inital 2-3 hour run-in then utilize it like you would normaly ski or use the boat. Extended running above the 4600RPM range at this early part of the break in is not what I would recomend until the first oil change. I like to change the oil the first time at anywhere between 15 and 20 hours and not utilize a synthetic until after the second oil change or at about 50 hours. I run primarly 6 liters and have found that they wake up at about 60-70 hours and at that point I start with the Royal Purple 15w-40.


    Then again??? The ski schools dont break in their boats in that fashion they just put it in the mix and get on with the day!!!

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

  • Jim NeelyJim Neely Posts: 291 Baller

    What benefits do you see with Royal Purple? Does it make sense to start using it in a 16 year old boat with 950 hours?
    68" Vapor
  • Jody_SealJody_Seal Posts: 2,434 Mega Baller
    It is a synthetic and if you have any kind of small leak or weep it will manifest itself into somthing bigger as all synthetic's really do a good job of cleaning out sludge deposits and internal Grawdue. If you feel your motor is clean enough and does not have any leakage then yes either a high mileage casterol or syntec typ oil will enhance your motors performance and internal cleaning. It is always better to utilize a synthetic after break in and stay with it. The Royal purple is rather expensive at around $9.00 per QT but I have had good luck with it in all my performance motors. Also remember to utilize the manufacturers recomended weight of oil even with Synthetics and make sure they have the correct amount of recomended additives in it.
    Hobby Boats can be expensive when the hobbyist is limited on their own skill and expertise.

  • DirtDirt Posts: 1,529 Open or 55K Rated Skier
    I have heard it is very important not to do the first oil change too soon and don't be too easy on the engine.
    I learned everything I know not to do from Horton
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 3,660 MM Trick Skier / Eccentric Person
    To break in an aircraft engine you run it as hard as you can. Keep it from overheating but maximize the cylinder pressure. This properly seats the rings and seats things quickly and completely. They do want rpms to vary a bit. The critical factor is to keep the temps under control (difficult until things have seated properly).

    Aircraft engines do not like synthetic oil. Mobil 1 was taken off the aircraft market because so much sludge built up that the engines would fail prematurely. Synthetics are not compatible with the lead in avgas. Synthetics may clean some stuff OK but certainly not everything. Of course if you use my oil change intervals in your boat (every decade whether it needs it or not) synthetics might last better. Do they still make Raylube?

    Boat engines spend so little of their lives at high percentages of rated power that things aren't nearly as critical. Plus the water cooling ensures stable temperatures (even in my hot lake). As long as you seat the rings by loading it a bit you should be OK. Pulling a bunch of barefooters might be the optimum break in.

    I did ruin a rebuild by idling it for about 20 minutes. The rings never did seat and the engine was weak and smoky. But that whole project was flawed - a propane powered Pinto engine is just not right for a full size Willys pickup. It was faster on the rough dirt road than on the highway! We broke the frame and transmission by the time the engine finally died. At least I used Raylube so didn't waste any money on oil.

    [Deleted User]
  • h2odawg79h2odawg79 Posts: 599 Baller

    Can't you still get Raylube @ Alpha Beta or Stater Bros. right next to the Crisco?!?!


    Ral, unless the engine is already "Broke in" from the manufacturer, a normal break is 15-20 mins. of slowly varied RPM's (2000 to 4000) to break in the Cam and Bearings, rings will auto seat if honed and assembled properly... Obviously, the manufacturers min. recomendations superceed All else!

    IMHO, Synthetics are Questionable at Best. Spending $9.00 per Qt.?  -Totally AMBIGUOUS!  about like Buying a $4000 Water ski and being convinced that an Over priced Ski will make All the difference for the ave. Hack...

    4k "Might" give Rossi an edge, Maybe... But wouldn't change a thing for me.

    Synthetics for a Boat that will easily last 10 yrs longer then any of us will actually keep it anyway? is just Silly! (and spensive!)  
    HOO HAW! thankya very much
  • RogerRoger Posts: 1,503 Crazy Baller
    In case anyone who just bought a new boat missed it, break in instructions are in the engine manual included with your boat's paperwork...

    I just bought a new 2009 SN a few months ago and the PCM manual has a whole section on break in, first oil change, etc.

    Roger B. Clark - Okeeheelee skier. Senior driver, Senior Judge
    [Deleted User]
  • TuneyTuney Posts: 244 Baller
    A $4k ski would give you an edge if the alternative is a $20 stick picked up at a garage sale. $9 a quart for an oil change is not a substantial amount when we are talking about our boats - at least it isn't for me. I use Royal Purple and up here in Canada it is closer to $14 per quart.
  • DWDW Posts: 1,863 Mega Baller
    It appears there are two subjects being covered in this thread.  For break in procedure, I would suggest looking over the engine manual supplied with the boat for reference, there are many opinions on how to break in an engine along with different methods depending on how an engine is built.  For example, a racing engine can be broken in much quicker since the tolerances are much looser or larger for specific reasons.  An engine built to last a long time will be assembled with much tighter tolerances.  On the oil topic, there are a couple of websites where the author has done a subsatial amoung of research and testing and lays out the details very well.  If you are concerned about oils, that is probably a great source.
  • h2odawg79h2odawg79 Posts: 599 Baller

    I absolutely agree with your example of 4k vs. yard sale. -like $9 Synthetic compared to sewing machine oil... 

    As for Motor Oil though, Reg. motor oil that is recommended by the manufacturers and meets or exceeds the needs of everything from a High rev. 4 cyl. to a high speed Corvette to a High torque 4x4, is more then enuf protection for a ski boat that doesn't even see a family cars one months wear & tear during the entire season.

    Thompsons water seal also has/had a very good sales campaign that suckered in Bazillions with it's almost worthless product. Not saying Synthetic is worthless. But, perception can easily be deception...  

    But, just like the High dollar ski's, what ever makes the person sleep well at night...
    HOO HAW! thankya very much
  • DWDW Posts: 1,863 Mega Baller
    There are differences between synthetic and petroleum oils in performance.  Synthetics tend to keep valve springs cooler in dyno testing, at least that is what we experienced developing engines for endurance racing.  That particular testing was not on the oil in this thread, and certainly oils constantly undergo changes so performance would change over time.  Tourney ski boats certainly do not run at very high speeds, so that advantage is probably not a significant issue.  I would think the key that a synthetic tends to offer is the best lubrication on start up and cool oil performance.  The other criteria of importance would be sludge and condensation protection.
  • jipster43jipster43 Posts: 1,407 Crazy Baller
    Here in Mantana your vehicle starts much easier on those sub-zero mornings if you're running a synthetic oil. Considering how difficult my '93 Mastercraft is to start when the engine is cold, I'm going to try some synthetic this year and see if it helps.

    JP :)
  • RichardDoaneRichardDoane Posts: 3,981 Mega Baller
    Napa brand synthetic oil works just as well for 1/2 the $$. We use a lot of it in the cars/boats we work on that request synthetic oil.
    BallOfSpray Pacific Northwest Vice President of Event Management, aka "Zappy"
    [Deleted User]
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