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  1. #1

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    Kawi STX-15F or Yami EX? or ..... as my first ski

    Hi folks,
    I am a new rider with only ~10-12 hrs experience on a ski, all rentals. Planning to get a '18 leftover or a decently priced '19. I usually ride with my 9 y/o on a small lake. My budget is 9.5-10 OTD w/ trailer and i've been torn between a 18/19 STX-15F and a 18/19 EX Deluxe.

    Yamaha
    I rented an EX a few times, both fresh and salt water. I like the way EX handles and I am okay with it performance wise but I wouldn't want it any slower. I also rode it out in the ocean once and it wasn't pretty - hard to ride when it's choppy. Otherwise seems good basic ski.

    Would a basic VX be much slower? Never ridden a VX. Also, 1.8 is out of my price range.

    Kawi
    I rode a STX-15F only once and it was great although I hated its steering assist. Engine/performance wise it was much faster than the EX but honestly I don't think I have the skills to test its limits just yet. And of course it looks very old school, old tech, etc..

    I realize that these are two somewhat different skis but all things considered either would probably work. What would you recommend? STX15f? EX?

    Thanks.


  2. #2
    MSX 150 guy lives on Mr. GP1800's Avatar
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    With your budget I’d look for a vxr or vx ho with the 1.8 that’s a year or 2 old if you are concerned a out the Kawasaki being outdated. Your skills will quickly develop to where you become comfortable. Don’t buy a slower machine just because you are new at it. The Kawasaki would also be a good choice from a performance standpoint. If you are carrying a passenger I probably wouldn’t do the ex.

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  4. #3

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    Thank you. I am leaning towards a more stable and heavier STX15. Other than the looks and its lack of modern tech (i.e. RIDE) it appears to have what I want in a PWC.

  5. #4
    WaterDR's Avatar
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    I think those are all good options. The STX is a fun yet basic machine and good for two people. May want to find an Ultra LX too. More stable but can be hard to find. Same motor as the STX but a little slower. Tons of storage.

    Cant really go wrong with a VX especially one with a 1.8 if you can locate a nice one in your price range. You would love the VX limited too especially with all the extra stuff it comes with.

    As to ride braking systems, I have owned old school machines and now newer ones with ride. Is it worth is? The ability to stop and maneuver with both hands on the handles I think is a measurable safety factor especially with small kids. Is it a deal breaker? That’s a tough one.

  6. #5

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    I’d say you’d outgrow the EX quicker than the STX-15F which would work better for towables and like you said passenger/storage carrying capabilities. With you being new to all this the 15F also doesn’t have all the fancy “Ride” stuff so you really get a feel on how to ride a PWC.

    Plus the 15F is the most reliable PWC out there, and one of the few you can actually call a JetSki. I’ve seen lots of people move on to better more modern craft however keep the 15F as a spare because it just keeps running.

    The only downside with the 15F is the seating position, more of an issue for taller people. But if you feel comfortable on it then it’s a non issue. Also, the steering sensor can be unplugged to disable the assist. Although it’s good to keep it if you have others ride it and not realize the whole steering/thrust characteristic of PWCs. Either way you go you’ll have fun though.

  7. #6

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    As a first time ski owner I would go with Yamaha all day long. Much more dependable ski. Kawi has great ski's and are damn fast but not dependable at all. I work on alot of ski's and see more motor issues in the kawasaki brand.

  8. #7
    Click avatar for tech links/info K447's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wakestar View Post
    ... I work on alot of ski's and see more motor issues in the kawasaki brand.
    The supercharged Kawasaki seems to have a very different reputation than the non-supercharged Kawasaki models.

    Is your comment specifically about the Kawasaki supercharged engines?

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  10. #8

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    EX and stx quite different ski, seadoo gti 155 doesn’t feature on your radar?

    a vx is bigger but with same tr-1 motor won’t be quicker than the ex, although rental ex might be slower.....

    worth riding before buying

  11. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by HDAV View Post
    seadoo gti 155 doesn’t feature on your radar?
    To be honest-- never ridden one, but also not a fan of seadoos from a DIY maintenance point of view.

  12. #10

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    I work on PWCs and see the opposite with the Kawasaki’s being the most reliable. Of course market share should be factored into the amounts actually coming through the door. There was some bad models like the 250 though, however the 15F has been very reliable, albeit very outdated.

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