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  1. #1

    Blown Jet Pump Bearing in 2011 STX-15F : Is motor really dead?

    Unfortunately, I had a pump bearing failure on a low-hours 2011 STX-15F as a result of some crap getting wrapped around the impeller shaft. Worse news was that I got the "oil overheat" warning and when we cracked the oil filter - sure enough - it had about two teaspoons of fine metal particles in it. - Given what usually happens with these skis after a pump bearing failure - I assumed those particles to be nice little pieces of my engine bearings.

    I took the ski in to a reputable dealer - fully expecting them to tell me the motor was cooked. But instead - they ran compression tests on it - which came out perfect, replaced the entire pump assembly (as the impeller had started to rattle and score the sleeve) and pronounced it fit for duty.

    I cross examined them pretty hard on the fact that there was some metal sludge in the oil filter (and not just a little) but they swore that since the compression test looked fine it was good to go.

    I'm still skeptical given that I can see how you could have mauled your engine bearings enough to cause oscillation in the crank (that will eventually lead to complete bearing failure and all the damage that comes with that - wile leaving the pistons and top end just fine for now (resulting in the OK compression test).

    I would really appreciate any thoughts on it from folks who have had a lot of experience with the pump bearing failures and resulting damage to engine from transferred thrust load.

    Thanks.


  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by NESKI View Post
    Unfortunately, I had a pump bearing failure on a low-hours 2011 STX-15F as a result of some crap getting wrapped around the impeller shaft. Worse news was that I got the "oil overheat" warning and when we cracked the oil filter - sure enough - it had about two teaspoons of fine metal particles in it. - Given what usually happens with these skis after a pump bearing failure - I assumed those particles to be nice little pieces of my engine bearings.

    I took the ski in to a reputable dealer - fully expecting them to tell me the motor was cooked. But instead - they ran compression tests on it - which came out perfect, replaced the entire pump assembly (as the impeller had started to rattle and score the sleeve) and pronounced it fit for duty.

    I cross examined them pretty hard on the fact that there was some metal sludge in the oil filter (and not just a little) but they swore that since the compression test looked fine it was good to go.

    I'm still skeptical given that I can see how you could have mauled your engine bearings enough to cause oscillation in the crank (that will eventually lead to complete bearing failure and all the damage that comes with that - wile leaving the pistons and top end just fine for now (resulting in the OK compression test).

    I would really appreciate any thoughts on it from folks who have had a lot of experience with the pump bearing failures and resulting damage to engine from transferred thrust load.

    Thanks.
    so first things first..... metal in any two spoons of any size and the motor is more then likely toast and that sucks..... problem is for now you have no clue where exactly it came from..... I'm not 100% sure, no on could be, that it was because of the pump bearing. the 2011 supercharged ultras had a different bearing setup in the pump so that if the pump bearing failed it didn't push the driveshaft into the motor and i would only assume they did the same for the 15f so that being said I'm not necessarily sure how driveshaft issues could cause a thrust bearing failure. Thrust bearing failure was what happen on prior pumps when the bearings went out

    from there: get it on a written statement that the engine is under 100% warranty from them. after that get out and put hours on it, hard hours. i bet it doesn't last longer then 2 tanks.

  3. #3

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    Your issue interests me as I have 3 STX-15Fs (a race version, a 2012, and a 2015). The pump in the 2015 blew the bearings out in 25 hours for no apparent reason. I'm not familiar enough with all of the design changes Kawasaki has made to the pump over the years but there are a lot of them. I would do an extensive search on this site to determine two things: 1) what model year did they start using the impeller shaft design that prevents the load on the crankshaft when the pump bearings fail, and 2) if there is a thrust bearing failure can the engine be salvaged before catastrophic failure occurs.

    If I found an excessive amount of metal filings in the oil filter I would just tear the engine down and investigate. Don't assume that the filings were a result of the pump failing.

  4. #4
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    Unfortunately not good news. Compression may be fine, but you'll end up doing more serious damage if you continue to run the motor. Hate to say it, but the motor needs to be torn down for inspection.

    When the pump bearings fail, the lateral force of the crank forces the thrust washer hard against the case and will create metal shavings, which is probably what you saw in the filter. Take a look on eBay at "needs repair" 15F cases and you'll see the damage on close-up pics (like the one below).

    -Greg
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    That is lot of metal. I had this happen to me on my 07 12. I stopped it as soon as I heard a strange noise from the pump. I fixed the pump and built up the impeller and remachined it down as well as putting a new wear ring it it, see my post on this. I pulled the motor. Pretty easy to do. Took the pan off, oil pump out. I only saw a couple of specs of gold here and there and the oil filter had some gold specs in it to, but not a lot of what you are describing. What I did was reverse flush my oil system with an external oil pump I have. Not saying this is going to not have issues down the road but I did this last season and the machine has been good so far. Knock on wood.
    T.J.

  7. #6
    "just sayin".. jetdave56's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJS0712F View Post
    That is lot of metal. I had this happen to me on my 07 12. I stopped it as soon as I heard a strange noise from the pump. I fixed the pump and built up the impeller and remachined it down as well as putting a new wear ring it it, see my post on this. I pulled the motor. Pretty easy to do. Took the pan off, oil pump out. I only saw a couple of specs of gold here and there and the oil filter had some gold specs in it to, but not a lot of what you are describing. What I did was reverse flush my oil system with an external oil pump I have. Not saying this is going to not have issues down the road but I did this last season and the machine has been good so far. Knock on wood.
    T.J.

    Where did you get the wear ring and did you install it,I think only Skat Trak makes them for Kawi...
    I see cutting them out with a Dremel clean up the pump then freeze the new wear ring and heat up the pump somewhat then with a small 2x4 hammer down into the wear ring or press in moving the 2x4 around ... Never changed out a wear ring but mine can use one😀

  8. #7
    This is how I run a jetski shop in the desert nmpeter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NESKI View Post
    Unfortunately, I had a pump bearing failure on a low-hours 2011 STX-15F as a result of some crap getting wrapped around the impeller shaft. Worse news was that I got the "oil overheat" warning and when we cracked the oil filter - sure enough - it had about two teaspoons of fine metal particles in it. - Given what usually happens with these skis after a pump bearing failure - I assumed those particles to be nice little pieces of my engine bearings.

    I took the ski in to a reputable dealer - fully expecting them to tell me the motor was cooked. But instead - they ran compression tests on it - which came out perfect, replaced the entire pump assembly (as the impeller had started to rattle and score the sleeve) and pronounced it fit for duty.

    I cross examined them pretty hard on the fact that there was some metal sludge in the oil filter (and not just a little) but they swore that since the compression test looked fine it was good to go.

    I'm still skeptical given that I can see how you could have mauled your engine bearings enough to cause oscillation in the crank (that will eventually lead to complete bearing failure and all the damage that comes with that - wile leaving the pistons and top end just fine for now (resulting in the OK compression test).

    I would really appreciate any thoughts on it from folks who have had a lot of experience with the pump bearing failures and resulting damage to engine from transferred thrust load.

    Thanks.
    Unfortunately, metal sludge in the oil filter is really really bad. Pull the engine and examine the actual damage, anything less is simply foolish. Been there done that:

    LINK



  9. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by jetdave56 View Post
    Where did you get the wear ring and did you install it,I think only Skat Trak makes them for Kawi...
    I see cutting them out with a Dremel clean up the pump then freeze the new wear ring and heat up the pump somewhat then with a small 2x4 hammer down into the wear ring or press in moving the 2x4 around ... Never changed out a wear ring but mine can use one
    Here is my post. It was for a 12F. Not sure if the Ultras have a cone wear ring or round one like I have.
    http://www.greenhulk.net/forums/showthread.php?t=247134

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  11. #9
    Let me out of here......I need to go on Greenhulk!
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    Could start by checking endplay at the couplers like here

  12. #10
    "just sayin".. jetdave56's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJS0712F View Post
    Here is my post. It was for a 12F. Not sure if the Ultras have a cone wear ring or round one like I have.
    http://www.greenhulk.net/forums/showthread.php?t=247134
    Don't mean to go off topic but if anyone's interested in changing out an Ultra 300/310 SS wear ring 160mm don't waste your time , I got mine out on a extra pump I had laying around but only Skat Trak makes them and refuse to sell to you as they must install it in the pump for you $255 plus you pay round trip shipping so that's around $325 give or take...

    For that price you can get a whole new pump for around $300 ( jersey shore PS or Partzilla) with a new SS wear ring inside , just going to have to rebuild the pump with seals and bearings and circlip .......

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