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  1. #1
    YoYamma's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Central Florida

    Yamaha FZS - 200 hours of Perfection

    Turned 200 hours on my 2009 FZS this afternoon.
    I was happy to have it happen at wide open throttle, racing two other skis with a beautiful Florida sunset; another day in paradise.

    Here are some FAQ's based on the things we get asked at the boat ramp...

    Anything ever go wrong mechanically with the ski?
    No mechanical issues ever. Zip. Nada. Still has the original supercharger, pump bearings, hoses and all other mechanical parts. The ski has started every time without fail. The title says it all; 200 hours of perfection.

    What type of modifications?
    Added the R&D intake grate, the stock VX ride plate and dumped the stock air for a $36 air filter from the local auto parts store. The FZ's do pretty good in the chop but these are set up for rivers and lakes and they do that very well. Our riding here in FL is probably a lot like the bayous where Jerry rides. Here it's mostly smooth, although we sometimes get some chop, for example sometimes we ride the St. Johns River into Lake George which is a 46,000 acre body of water; and in 15-20 mph winds this can create some good chop. If we rode this kind of water all the time, I would probably go back to the factory ride plate.

    How fast is it?
    As fast as you want. At 1812 cc the FZ's have the largest displacement engine in the industry and I could easily make it go a LOT faster. To be honest, 72-73 range is plenty fast for me now and I can barely hang on as it is. But I like having the option; and I know if I want to go there down the road I won't have to worry about the hulls restricting me or "hitting the wall" at 75 mph or whatever. Trust me; if you want big speed on this platform, Jerry and the boys here at GH can hook you up. The massive engines on the FZR/S are under-stressed, well designed, and there is a lot of untapped power in them compared to the factory setup.

    What do we do to maintain the ski?
    Someone asked me what type of “post ride maintenance” we do. I told him we rinse them off, wipe them down and put them in the garage. Outside of a couple of scheduled maintenance trips to the dealer and a few oil changes, there really hasn't been any maintenance. Rarely lift the seat. Never changed the spark plugs in my ski. Never “fogged” anything. I check the oil level now and then and I think we added one quart of oil to it in 200 hours. That's about it. The RXT's always seemed to hold water in the exhaust after a ride, but the Yamahas do not. We blip the throttle on the trailer but nothing really comes out. The ski has been run almost exclusively on Shell regular grade fuel, for whatever that's worth. Not that I prefer it or anything, but it just happens that we have a Shell station a few minutes from the house. I'll be getting the valve clearance checked shortly per the manual. I'm sure the maintenance would be more extensive if we rode in salt water, but we ride in fresh water so that's not even an issue.

    Any complaints?
    Not really. If there was anything to complain about, I guess it would be the apparent safety issue with the stock intake grate which seems to be kind of a unique thing with the FZ models. I don't have any ties to any manufacturer and I'm not such a “fan-boy” that I won't tell it like it is; that whole intake grate thing is not cool. The good news is, we got the R&D Aquavein grate on there and no hint of bucking ever, even in hundreds of hours of use and much of that at WOT speeds. For anyone who is shopping for a PWC; if there are any other issues, I would say the ride is not as smooth as our old RXT's; and for that reason I think the FZ's are better suited to a more athletic rider who is not afraid to get off their azz and ride standing up. The FZR/S was actually specifically designed for the standing rider and that's the way I like to ride it. Beyond that, what's to complain about… geez, I only paid about $10K for the ski and even when you factor in the intake grate that was thousands less than the other SC offerings back in 2010. Yamaha engines aren't speed-locked from the factory so I didn't have to crack the ECU or bypass a limiter with any funky gizmo or anything, so that means I'm solidly backed by a 5 year Y.E.S. warranty. And that's a whole year more than Sea-Doo would give me on their units here in Florida, so I really can't complain at all.

    Is the FZS a good ski for you?
    It could be. The Yamaha FZS is not a cadillac, or a cream puff ride. It doesn't have all the bells and whistles, like brakes and computer “sport modes,” etc. But personally, I don't care much for complicated things, so I kind of like that. For me it's been a great value; a very fast but simple, meat-and-potatoes supercharged ski; low maintenance with amazing durability, and that's what I like about it. We actually have two of these units and the other one has a little over 190 hours with similar results. When that one hits 200 hours I'll add my notes to this thread.
    Last edited by YoYamma; 12-10-2012 at 10:52 AM.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    West Des Moines, Iowa
    Nice review.

  3. #3
    badjoka's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Fairfield, CT

    Re: Yamaha FZS - 200 hours of Perfection

    Great review, thx!

  4. #4

    Join Date
    May 2007
    Minneapolis MN
    Yo - I'm jealous of your experience. I also have 2 FZs-my '09 FZS has 160 hours of salt water use with no issues but my '12 FZR is plagued with engine and hull issues. You should count your blessings.

  5. #5
    MSX 150 guy lives on Mr. GP1800's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Milwaukee WI
    I have spent a little time on the seat of a 2010 FZS. You are right, its as fast as you want to go. The only improvement I would like to see is the gauge package. They don't give you much in the way of instrumentation. I find them kind of hard to see and read at speed, at least while bouncing around on the big waves. Good write up.

  6. #6
    Excellent and candid review here; low cost of ownership, reasonable maintenance Requirements, and great performance. JB

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  8. #7
    1_Fast_SHO's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Houston, Texas
    Good review. Thanks

  9. #8
    Vman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    I'd say that's a reliable ski. Congrats on 200, and hope you get many more trouble free hours.

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  11. #9
    alan1967's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Great,and another 200 happy hours!!!!!

  12. +1 by:

  13. #10

    Join Date
    May 2009
    Nashville, Tn

    Yamaha FZS - 200 hours of Perfection


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