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  1. #1

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    Input needed on new (or used) skis

    Hi all,

    First great forum you all have. Most helpful!

    So here is a quick back story for you. About 10 years ago the wife and I had two skis, 1- Ultra 150 and 1- Polaris MSX150. Mine was the Ultra and the Wife's was the MSX. Anyway, we sold those skis but are now looking to get back into the sport. So I have spent some time researching and I started a thread in the Sea Doo section (sorry if those are bad words around here...). Based on research and input from those guys I am thinking a GTR215 for me and a GTX155 for the wife (in that brand).

    So the real question for you guys is what would you recommend in the Yamaha lineup? I am thinking VXR for me and a VX Cruiser for the wife. I know there will be a large difference in speed and such but we are used to that. How do these models compare to the Doo models listed (not to start a Yamaha is better than SD debate).

    A little more info for you all. I like to PLAY. Spins, speed, fast cornering, wave jumping from time to time too! The wife likes STABILITY! She is much less concerned about all out power 55-58mph is more than enough. For where we ride, inland lakes mostly (Chippewa, Berlin, Pleasant Hill ETC). We go down to the Ohio river from time to time as well. Hopefully we'll get up to Lake Erie this time around.

    Thanks for any input guys!

    Chris


  2. #2
    DrivingZiggy's Avatar
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    I'm far from being an expert, but I'll throw my opinion out there anyway. Nobody is too shy to correct me if I'm wrong!

    I think the VX Cruiser is probably a pretty good comparison to the GTI 130. And if you move up to the GTI 130 SE, then you'd be looking at the VX Deluxe. In my case, that's an important distinction because I'm fat and the reboarding step is essential in case I fall off or just go swimming. Both have happened and I was able to reboard.

    The VXR is probably more comparable to the 155 than the 215 since the 215 is the only one that has a supercharger, but I think the VXR's power is somewhere between those two SeaDoo models.

    I also asked before buying. Here is that thread if you'd care to read it. It went several pages. But one of the things that I really wanted to do was put the ski in the ocean in Miami and cruise through the Atlantic Ocean to Bimini. I did that, and it was a glorious accomplishment for me. But anyway, after hashing out what I really wanted to do, the general consensus was that I should get the FX HO because it's better in the chop and has a bit more power than the base VX--which might be needed out there on the Gulf Stream. That being said, you'd probably only need those features while up in Lake Erie.

    Another thing to consider is Yamaha's RiDE system which is comparable to SeaDoo's iBR. It could come in handy in emergency situations. One time we were out riding and SeaDonkee was in the lead. As he came around a somewhat blind turn, he was faced with a pile of rocks and train trestle. Luckily he was on his Honda and he reached down with his left hand and pulled his reverse bucket, hit the throttle, and was able to stop. That maneuver would have been much more difficult on a Yamaha without the RiDE because the lever is on the right side. So you would either have to use your throttle hand or cross over with your other hand; either way it probably would not have happened quickly enough to avoid those obstacles.

    I also didn't want a supercharged ski precisely because of the Bahamas trip. The jumping in and out of the waves is pretty hard on the clutch in that kind of riding and I was concerned about breaking something. And with the Yamahas, you really have to work hard to break them. Don't ask me how I know! But I will say that the only reason mine ever complained was when I really, really lost my mind.

    I have since learned a couple more reasons I prefer Yamaha. There is no carbon ring to go bad (I still don't even fully comprehend what that is), and because of the design you don't have to worry about having an alignment tool available to make sure everything is lined up properly. Pretty much just do the break in properly, do the maintenance at the recommended intervals, slosh some gas into it, and RiDE!

  3. #3

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    Thank you sir!

    I knew the VXR was not going to be quite up to the GTR (technically) but I think that is the closest. I am really torn on the wife's ski though. I don't want her to be under powered too much.

    I do really want to get a ski with RiDE or iBR for sure. Seems like a GREAT feature! Correct me if I am wrong but the 2014 model year is when that was introduced in the Yamaha lineup yes?

    I'll be sure to check out your thread! I did quite a bit of searching prior to posting the original thread but I honestly did not do as much in the Yamaha thread yet.

    More research to do!

    Chris

  4. #4
    I just bought my first ever ski this past week and so went through a similar learning curve in order to figure out which one I wanted for me, my wife and two kids at our lake house. I ended up with the FX SHO because I hate to underbuy engine-wise only to regret it later. I can always go ahead with a VXR or a VXS for a second ski. I've put 5 hours on it this week and am glad I went with the supercharged engine and this is coming from someone with zero experience on a ski a (but 42 years boating) aside for the 30 minutes I rented one in Grand Cayman this past winter which was limited to 40mph. I didn't go with a Sea Doo for a few reasons, one being few skis on the used marked were exactly what I wanted...most were from the early 2000's or earlier and selection was slim, two being I don't care for the 100 hour supercharger maintenance on the Sea Doo's and also like that the Yamaha is engineered for 87 octane. I can attest that I used over $70 in gas in 5 hours or so of light throttle use and a lot of that was in low rpm mode while my wife and son drove so happy not to buy premium gas.



    The run down on the Yamaha is that in 2012 they added the true neutral detent in the reverse lever and then for 2015 they added the RIDE system so you have to go brand new to get it. In my state there is no sales tax on used boats as long as it is from a private party...only sales tax on the trailer and so whenever possible I like to get slightly used from someone who bought but just didn't use it which is common with boats but the boats and skis hit the market for only a couple weeks then they are gone and junk remains while a few trickle on the market, powersports like 4 wheelers are like this too but 4 wheelers seem to follow hunting season.

    It seems like Yamaha was way behind adding a left side controller but they said they were developing it for several years as it does more than the IBR if I recall.

  5. #5

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    Ok, so I stopped by a Columbus area Yamaha dealer today and after looking over the skis they had and the literature I think the combo for us would be the VXS for me and the FX HO for the wife. Still digging though. I like the seat on the "S" model without the aggressive bolstering. I am a tall guy 6'6" so having a little room to move around would be good. The wife likes the FX HO better than the cruiser for the same reason. We'll know more when we actually sit on them side by side though.

    Chris

  6. #6
    Broncosguru7's Avatar
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    Skip the vx for her and buy the fx if that's an option in this. I like the way the sea doo rides but mine is a 2012 and at the 31 hour mark it started taking on water from the carbon seal not sure if I would by another for that reason.

  7. #7
    DrivingZiggy's Avatar
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    The only two differences that I know of from the FX HO to the FX Cruiser HO is the "cruiser" seat and the pop-up cleat. A lot of the guys who are into racing don't like the cruiser seat because it limits their mobility(?) as they try to move around on the ski. You know, the lower ridge of the regular seat doesn't stop them from throwing their legs around.

    The VXS and the FX HO will have the exact same engine. The FX HO will have the deeper "V" hull for cutting through the waves.

    Here is Yamaha's page for the VXS.

    Here is Yamaha's page for the FX HO.

    Both pages have button to click to see their promotional video of each machine. You can also browse all of their machines on their site.

    By the way, I like to "cruise around" with friends. That means ~35-40 mph and I get right around 100 miles out of a tank if I don't drive too spiritedly. On my Key Biscayne to Bimini trip, made the 53 miles through the rough ocean with Gulf Stream and everything on 13 gallons each way.

  8. #8

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    Thanks!

    We are looking at the non-cruiser and the VXS for the extra mobility of the normal seat. I am a tall guy and my wife is tall-ish too so room to move would be good. Understood on the engine between the two. That is the part I liked the best, we will be "similar" in top speed (within 3-4 according to boat test) but she'll have the larger more stable ski.

    Chris

  9. #9
    With the 'Cruiser' package you also get the right side of the speedo gauge package instead of a blank screen. The right side gives you fuel usage, water temp, compass direction and a few other novelty type bits of info. I think that the 'non-cruiser' gauge package is a little light on features for the money. I tried to get my hands on the SHO with the cruiser package but the only one on the market that wasn't brand new was beat to heck even though it was 3 years old with only 50 hours. The first time we rode 3-up, the back rider complained about the lack of any back support on my non-cruiser model. I prefer the look of the flat seat but like the practicality of the Cruiser seat plus I have a nice looking Riva seat cover installed since the stock seat is too plane jane looking.

  10. #10
    Don't mean to go off subject but I have a hard time getting an answer when I start a new thread for whatever reason....anyway what's yalls thoughts on a 13 year old ski with only 145 hours? Red flag? It runs great just has minor cosmetic issues..2003 seadoo 4 tec

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