1973 Tahiti with 455 olds- problem with water leak
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1973 Tahiti with 455 olds- problem with water leak

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    Default 1973 Tahiti with 455 olds- problem with water leak

    Hello, I’m looking for a little help here. I recently picked up this 1973 Tahiti with the 455 olds and Berkeley Jet drive. The problem is this- the guy said he was in the boat goin pretty fast when a water leak from the bell housing started filling the boat. After inspection he noticed that one of the bolts from the bell housing was now missing, and that is the exact spot the water was pumpin out from. My question is, does this make sens? Why is there water in the bell housing? Here is a pic to make it easier. Also, does the bolt simply need to be replaced or does it need a new seal/gasket?
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    Last edited by Double Stack; 07-12-2011 at 07:49 PM.

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    Sounds like he was trying to get rid of the boat and make it sound like it was an easy fix! If it was, why did he not just stick a bolt in the hole? I would stick it in the water and make a sound judgment for myself! Then you can fix it correctly and enjoy the boat!

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    That bolt doesn't go into anything that contains water. Not that I can remember.

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    you probably got a big problem if water is coming out of that hole. Id say the block might be cracked there or somewhere else near by and is running down to that spot. I would back it in the water and run it on the trailer and search the engine closely while its running to see if you can find where the water is originating.

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    Hey thanks a lot guys!! I really hope it’s not a cracked block. The oil doesn’t have any water in it that I can see though (no chocolate milk or bubbles), so I kinda figured it wasn’t. Am I wrong? The good news is, I got the boat and trailer for under the price of the trailer it’s self!! The bad news is, I’m going to have to do some work on it before I can even take it down to the water to test it like you guy’s have said. It’s been sitting for a few years I simply picked it up because it sounded like a fun project, and it was so cheap. I have no clue why he didn’t replace the bolt himself, but I would guess you are right about him trying to making it sound easy. Yeah, I didn’t think there should be water in the bell housing, but I don’t know anything about jet boats. He ran the add as engin needs work/ replaced. I thought the price was right though. It’s the 19 footer that seats eight. He said it was a harder Tahiti to find.
    Any other information is greatly appreciated!
    Last edited by Double Stack; 07-13-2011 at 10:03 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Stack View Post
    Hey thanks a lot guys!! I really hope its not a cracked block. The oil doesnt have any water in it that I can see though (no chocolate milk or bubbles), so I kinda figured it wasnt. Am I wrong? The good news is, I got the boat and trailer for under the price of the trailer its self!! The bad news is, Im going to have to do some work on it before I can even take it down to the water to test it like you guys have said. Its been sitting for a few years I simply picked it up because it sounded like a fun project, and it was so cheap. I have no clue why he didnt replace the bolt himself, but I would guess you are right about him trying to making it sound easy. Yeah, I didnt think there should be water in the bell housing, but I dont know anything about jet boats. He ran the add as engin needs work/ replaced. I thought the price was right though. Its the 19 footer that seats eight. He said it was a harder Tahiti to find.
    Any other information is greatly appreciated!
    How about a pic of the whole boat?

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    Quote Originally Posted by spectra 224 View Post
    I would stick it in the water and make a sound judgment for myself! Then you can fix it correctly and enjoy the boat!
    X2...i'm thinking its a freeze plug that got rotted out from sitting with water in the block for a long period of time...easy fix, if, thats what it is ...lets see some Pics of the boat

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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Stack View Post
    Why is there water in the bell housing? Here is a pic to make it easier. Also, does the bolt simply need to be replaced or does it need a new seal/gasket?
    It could be something that's crazy simple that I've seen numerous times over the years. The water in the bilge gets deep enough for the flywheel or flex plate to sling water making it look like a big leak coming from the rear of the engine. If you pull the bell housing, you just might find that the casting has a flaw right at that bolt hole where the water has a way to get through making it look like it's coming from the engine. Hopefully it does turn out to be something real simple but as mentioned above, testing is the only way to find out for sure.
    Also, stick a small screw driver into the hole to see if it bottoms out or if you feel some grinding like the screw driver is going through a rusted out hole.

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    a tahiti thats hard to find? is there such a thing?

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    "CRAZY SIMPLE" would be awesome!! Hell, the idea of changing out a freeze plugs gives me a warm fuzzy feeling inside compared to a cracked block.

    Cas,
    If this flaw is present how is it fixed? Is it just keeping the water from getting to the fly wheel or flex plate?


    Here’s a couple pictures of the boat. I haven’t had a chance to clean her up yet, but she has some real potential!! Is there a Tahiti that’s hard to find- I’m guessing not with the way you put it. I’m still happy though!!

    All this info is too cool of you guys!! I definitely feel as if I have more to work with now!!
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    Last edited by Double Stack; 07-13-2011 at 11:34 AM.

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    ah well that is a very cool nostalgic lookin boat! looks like the inside is in great shape.

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    Cas,
    I checked the bolt hole, and the screwdriver goes clean through and out the other side. No rust.

    Ka0tyk,
    Stoked you like the boat!!

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    I would make sure to go over those wheel bearings! With those little tires, the bearings are going to be spinning a million miles an hour!

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    Ok so I just talked to the guy, and he said that the water was definitely coming from that bolt spot and up line/ seal from the bolt spot. Basically were the bell housing meets the block, and for about two to three inches up from there. When he would go slow, it was a sputter of a leak. When he would get on the gas, it would push water really hard. I really dont think this guy was trying to hide anything. I think he more thought that he might have cracked the block, and basically turned a blind eye to avoid the pain of reality. He also told me the boat hasnt been run since 2004. One more thing was that the day this happend the boat took on a lot of water, he got it on the trailer, drained the water, and tryed to start it again, but it was flooded and only tryed to turnover. Ruu, Ruu, Ruu, sound so he says.


    Spectra224,
    Thanks for the tip. The guy told me about the keeping the bearings greased, and he greased them before he delivered the boat to me too.

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