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  1. #1

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    Lightbulb 2018 FX HO, RIDE System Error Code 159, Strange Reverse Bucket Behavior.. loose wire?

    Hi Greenhulk community,

    I have had 130 problem free epic hours on my 2018 FX HO Cruiser, never a problem whatsoever.

    I recently started getting check engine light indications, which either display as 01 (OK) or 159 (RIDE system related issues).

    Basically what happens is that the reverse gate remains down when the ski is shut off, it does not retract up as it should.

    When the reverse gate is down, and the ski is started up, the check engine light triggers.

    If I pull the lanyard out while the ski is in forward (leaving the bucket up), then on next startup there is no code.

    I have lost F/R control on two occassions, both after bumpy long hard rides, where the ski was stuck in N and I could not engage either F or R.

    This is easy to fix by jumping in the water, disconnecting the ball socket to the reverse gate, putting the reverse gate up (in the correction position), and then re-starting and shifting into F. Then the ski can be shut off via a lanyard pull with the gate up, and I can re-connect the ball socket to the reverse gate and then have no symptoms for some time.

    Aside from these 1 or 2 random occurrences, the R/F/N shifting and performance is perfect, I do not believe this is a problem with the RIDE motor unit itself.

    I believe I have a loose wire somewhere between the RIDE motor, the ECU, or the handlebar/steering system.

    The only wire that runs aft of the bilge pump is extremely taught, way too tight, and this must be the wire running to the RIDE system I suspect, it's the only wire running aft of the bilge/battery section. It's a single black wire.

    That wire being overly tight and my symptoms popping up after rough rides leads me to strongly suspect some kind of short or bad connection.

    Can someone advise me how to access the RIDE system in the back, it's very difficult to tell where that wire runs, or how to access it.

    Should I begin from the shifting controls on the handle-bar, and work aft, or start at the RIDE system and move forward?

    Is there an easy/obvious location for a wiring harness for this unit, which could have come loose?

    Thank you very much for any guidance!


  2. #2

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    Can anyone suggest where the RIDE system wiring runs or where the harness connections might be?

    Any input appreciated, it's very hard to access rear of the bilge pump

  3. #3
    Click avatar for tech links/info K447's Avatar
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    The thin black wire you have found in the hull rear area may be for the speedometer paddle wheel sensor in the ride plate. That paddlewheel wiring runs adjacent to the RiDE motor unit in the left rear of the hull.

    On my GP1800 the RiDE wiring is a thick wire bundle connected via a large squarish white plastic connector near the left (left as oriented while standing above/behind the hull) bottom area of the electrical panel.

    IIRC the cable bundle between the fuse panel and the RiDE motor runs along the left side of the hull, low down.

    The GP1800 comes with a large plastic shroud covering the entire electrical panel. And another plastic decorative cover atop the engine. Both of these covers have been removed on my watercraft to allow easier access and eyeball exposure. They reside in a storage bin until it is time to sell the ski.

    With the electrical panel shroud in place it might be difficult to access and inspect the wiring.
    Last edited by K447; 09-15-2018 at 05:45 AM.

  4. #4
    superair's Avatar
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    Have you checked the adjustment of the cable? With the bucket in position with the power off you should be able to remove the cable from the ball on the bucket without too much resistance. If this is not the case it might need adjusting either in or out. If it is out of adjustment then the computer doesn't know that it is in the correct position and gives you this error.

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  6. #5
    Click avatar for tech links/info K447's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by superair View Post
    Have you checked the adjustment of the cable?

    With the bucket in position with the power off you should be able to remove the cable from the ball on the bucket without too much resistance. If this is not the case it might need adjusting either in or out. If it is out of adjustment then the computer doesn't know that it is in the correct position and gives you this error.
    The RiDE motor connects to the reverse bucket (and to the trim nozzle) using a short control rod, not a cable.

    Agreed that the reverse bucket should not be binding against the jet pump structure when the bucket is in the up position.

    The owners manual describes how to disconnect the rod end from the bucket. There is a spring loaded slide latch on the rod end where it attaches to the ball. The RiDE motor end of the rod has the same clip release so the rod can be removed entirely.

  7. #6
    Ive had multiple RIDE motor go out on my skis. You will never be able to tell its broken just by looking at it or even tearing it down. Take her to the dealer
    and have them fix it for you.

    I typically get 5-700 hours out of one. Just be glad you still have a warranty and they aren’t 1200 bucks anymore. Easy enough to install yourself but it shouldn’t be necessary for your situation.

  8. #7
    Click avatar for tech links/info K447's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwtony View Post
    Ive had multiple RIDE motor go out on my skis. You will never be able to tell its broken just by looking at it or even tearing it down. Take her to the dealer and have them fix it for you.

    I typically get 5-700 hours out of one. Just be glad you still have a warranty and they aren’t 1200 bucks anymore. Easy enough to install yourself but it shouldn’t be necessary for your situation.
    You had one of the first RiDE motor failures, IIRC. And Yamaha eventually replaced/reimbursed that unit?

    Are these RiDE motors failing from salt water exposure?

  9. #8
    Eventually they gave us a refund on that part for it being so close to warranty, and because they wanted it for testing. Ive replaced every single ride motor (5 or 6) on all of my ride equipped skis.

    Ive torn every one down and none had any kind of visible damage. Everything looked mint and they functioned, but still threw a code. Replace and all good....whats worse is they always seen to crap out when i have a long term rental planned and they go out the day before. Ive had to drive 400+ miles to get my hands on them.

    I still think RIDE is a great system, but with as heavy duty as their internals are there is no reason they should have skimped out on chinesium grade electrical components.

  10. #9

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    thanks guys great suggestions

    thanks GH community some amazing suggestions here, thanks K447 and kwtony !

    I'm starting to think it is the RIDE motor after a decent amount of troubleshooting with the easier suggestions such as electrical connections, adjustment to the control rod, etc.

    Is a defective RIDE motor able to verified with YDS or similar software at the dealer?

    Because I have a U.S. FX HO but I shipped it to the South Pacific where there is a Yamaha dealer but with admittedly less expertise than a U.S. dealer simply because there is so much less sales volume here, they see and work on far fewer skis than a dealer in the U.S.

    They've offered to take a look for me but it's a big mission just to get it to them, though less than taking out the RIDE motor and flying to the U.S. with it back to my original purchased from dealer.

    Im hesitant to give up all that time and possibly find they don't have the correct tools or software to diagnose a RIDE motor.

    Can anyone shed light on what the procedure is to determine if the unit has failed or not?

    Is it easy to get out and pop in a bag for a flight?


    It sounds like they are cheaper than before, hopefully my dealer will support me, but if not what's the cost these days? Under $1000?

    Many thanks, will keep troubleshooting and updating. Still get code 159 90% of the time and occasionally nothing and a code 01 for normal with no check engine light, the other 10% of the time...

    At the moment I have everything disconnected (reverse bucket, rod assembly, etc.) so I have no RIDE controls but a functional ski nonetheless...

  11. #10
    Click avatar for tech links/info K447's Avatar
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    Did you unplug and thoroughly inspect the big RiDE wire harness cable connector near the electrical panel? Look for water, corrosion, loose or damaged pins.

    Also remove and inspect the RiDE relay and fuse? Look for water/corrosion/damage/looseness. The recessed relay is hard to pull out without damaging it. The fuse should not be difficult.

    Tip: Disconnect battery before messing inside the electrical box.

    http://greenhulk.net/forums/showthre...=1#post2918836



    Where exactly are you located? Maybe someone could be enticed to show up there with a new RiDE motor, depending on the offer Winter is coming in the northern hemisphere ...

    The Service manual documents how to extract the RiDE motor. Most of the hassle would be in extracting the exhaust components that are in the way. And then getting the actual RiDE motor loose and extracted from the hull.

    Might also need to remove the jet pump to get access to the RiDE motor mounting bolts.

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