March 23, 2018 at 8:24 pm #9477
Tying to get in touch with a member here called "T2stroke" /Dan in TN. He was providing me with some excellent help and advice regarding my 89 Johnson 150. He came over to the "Fiberglassics" site to help out after noticing a "sticky" in the members only area here, submitted by another member of both sites. I sent a pm yesterday, hoping to hear back ! He has been the only person to seem to have real insight into the problems Im having. Thanks yall !
US Member - 1 Year
Topics: 43March 23, 2018 at 8:40 pm #72921
Dan is active here, posting just a couple of days ago EDIT: posted today
Click on his name to send a PM or emailMarch 28, 2018 at 8:34 pm #73165
Thanks Frank. I tried sending a pm/email. Nothing back so far. Starting to feel like a unwanted stalker. I might have to join over here just to see if there is anyone that can help !March 29, 2018 at 8:00 pm #73211
Dan has been dealing with some pretty heavy issues lately….Please forgive him….
While Dan is truly the go to guy on these engines, there are others of us here that can help out I’m sure….
OK, did my best to read all yours/Dan’s posts on that website…
So, you premix, correct?
Let’s back up a bit and talk about the history of this engine/rig. When was the last time it idled/accelerated OK? How long was it between the last time it idled/accelerated OK and the next time you used it when it didn’t run OK?
I understand you use the rig at altitude sometimes, which would probably have the effect of making the engine idle a bit richer. And, like Dan says, the idle air bleeds are handled in just the opposite manner as conventional fuel jets, which gets confusing…But, I am assuming you have not changed any air bleed sizes, just performed the old toothpick trick. Dan’s information concerning trim position is spot on, but you are correct also. Trying to accelerate when trimmed out will result in poor acceleration and ventilation (prop loses its bite on the water and slips, causing the engine to rev up but boat speed does not increase)…Sounds like you experienced propeller ventilation, not an engine problem, when you accelerated while trimmed up a bit. Generally, it is best to trim out a bit while idling around the harbor, but then you will have to trim down again before accelerating.
When the engine idles poorly, is it sneezing/coughing when it stalls? If so, that is generally an indication of a lean condition. Resolving the idle condition will probably repair the off idle/acceleration problem.
Is this engine developing full power? What RPM does the engine turn up when properly trimmed at WOT? Do you know the style/pitch size of the propeller? An engine that isn’t developing full power is not going to accelerate/idle properly. When was the last time this engine has a compression test? Perhaps the engine is not running on all six cylinders for one reason or another.
Sounds like you have had the carburetors apart a few times. But, there is a synchronization procedure that must be right or the engine will never idle/accelerate properly. All the new carburetors/jet changes will not compensate for a carb that is not closing fully at idle, cam pick that is off, or ignition pick up timing that is wrong.
These engine also have an ugly issue where the timing magnet sensor ring comes loose under the flywheel, which can cause erratic/no idle conditions, the flywheel key could be sheared as well, this will have the same negative effects. Flywheel key condition can be checked using the TDC tool to check flywheel location. Yes, you could remove the flywheel to check the key, but this is near impossible without the proper tools. A loose flywheel timing magnet will show up on a timing light, a sheared flywheel key will not.
So, I’m thinking we need to back up a bit, you have had the carbs apart a few times. Dan spoke of the top gaskets getting crushed causing a fuel restriction, it’s amazing how they look like "they were made that way" when you inspect them. If the gaskets are tan in color, they are the newer design that is not prone to this problem.
If it were mine, I would start with the compression test. From there, I would take the time to synchronize the engine properly, using the TDC tool to check flywheel positioning on the crank. Like Dan says, the engine will idle poorly if it does not get up to temperature. I’m not sure if this engine has the quikstart feature, which messed with idle timing to help the engine warm up. If so, this could be an issue.
The other thing I thought of is a leaky electric primer, which would cause a rich condition at low speeds, but not effect WOT performance that much. But, if the engine sneezes/coughs/spits, this is an indication of a lean condition, which more or less rules out a leaky primer…..April 1, 2018 at 3:21 pm #73313
Hey fleetwin, thanks for reaching out. Really sorry to hear about Dan going through a difficult time, thanks for the update. I hope better days are heading his way soon. Though I dont know him personally outside of the online boat community, he sure seems like a great guy, always been so friendly and helpful to me. I appreciate your detailed response here fleet, and I will do my best to address each point the best I can. Thanks for taking the time to check out the fiberglassics thread. A few of the things you mention here really hit a few chords for me. So lets get started;
First off, yes I premix. The motor did come with the oil injection tank so you dont have to premix. However the previous owner had it disconnected by a marine shop, as they warned him that if the system stopped working he could easily destroy the engine quickly.
Your next question was regarding the last time the engine ran well. Last year was my first season with this rig (had a merc before) and it pretty much behaved the same almost every time out, with one exception; my lake powell trip during september. Although it didnt run perfect, it was the best I had seen. No acceleration issues, just a bit of difficulty starting and idling but not near as bad as normal. Lake Powell is quite a bit lower in altitude than my normal lakes.Its around 3700 ft vs the 7 – 10,000 ft range of my "home" lakes. Also it was near 100 degress for most of my trip to powell and the water temp was around 80. This may have made it run warmer. So it could have been either, the lower altitude or the warmer operating temp that helped it run smoother.
I did not change anything in the carbs, just pulled em off and apart, cleaned up and reinstalled. Ran exactly the same after, and during the toothpick tests, which I tried a few different times.
It definitely has a little sneeze/cough thing happen when it conks out.
I do believe it develops full power, but coudnt be certain. It turns (to the best of my memory) close to 5 k when at WOT/full speed. We usually wakeboard with it around 28- 3100 rpm. Speedo isnt hooked up so I cant correlate anything with speed. But with a gps app on my phone I got a reading of 35 (ish) mph while at one of my "home" lakes. I also beleive it does have the correct prop. Its a aftermarket (michigan) 14 1/2 x 17 RH. Model #013002.
I have not compression tested the motor yet. Seems kinda silly I know. Dan had recommended I try other things before compression testing, which I usually do to any motor vehicle I purchase. I will be giving it a go soon here. I will definitely post the results of that here.
I certainly have been curious about synchronizing, as that seems like a distinct possibility. I do not currently own a timing light, or a TDC tool, which looks easy enough to come by, but those CDI lights are seriously expensive.
The gaskets in my carbs were tan, so they are the "new" ones.
Im not sure about the "quickstart" feature either.
I like your approach here, and I will do my best to follow through with each step. I will start with the compression test, from there I will (hopefully!) try to sync. I will probably need some hand holding to get me through that part !
Thanks again fleet. I appreciate your time, knowledge and help. I will post back on here later today or in the next couple of days.
US Member - 1 Year
Topics: 43April 1, 2018 at 5:18 pm #73321
Since I live about 10 ft above sea level, I don’t know squat about 10,000 ft mountains, except I’ve been there and love ’em. But that sounds to me like it might have something to do with your performance problems. But I suppose you have already checked all that out, right?April 1, 2018 at 11:21 pm #73332
Hey Frank ! Yes I have spent a significant amount of time researching this. I bought this boat last spring in february. I bought it about 3 hrs from where I live. The previous owner was a police officer with a family, so when he told me that it didnt have any issues or problems (except "not having a radio") I trusted him. He "seemed" honest enough. Said he was selling to get a boat more set up for fishing. It had the described condition/issues from the first time out, so I wondered if it was altitude related. However the elevation of the city that I bought it (Fountain) is fairly similar to the elevation that I mostly operate in. I spent exhausting amounts of time looking into altitude and or jetting. However Dan is the one who actually explained to me how the jetting works on these engines. And also he told me that changing the jets would likely make the problem worse, especially since the engine already has the correct jets for my altitude per Johnson. Im really interested to see what the compression test and the carb synchronization do. I think fleetwin is on to something here.April 1, 2018 at 11:27 pm #73333
Im hoping to compression test in the next day or so. Shes winterized at the moment, but Im ready to start working this out. My local boat ramp (about and hour and 15 minutes away) opened yesterday. I have used the compression tester a few times before, on my other boat and on my truck. The one aspect I often struggle with is grounding the plug wires. What is the best way to accomplish this on a outboard ? Should I also disconnect the fuel line ? ThanksApril 2, 2018 at 1:19 pm #73349
It is probably easiest to just unplug the safety lanyard/kill switch from the dashboard/control box, this will kill the spark while cranking.
Needless to say, having the fuel supply nearby and in the cylinders makes cranking the engine with the plugs out dangerous. I suppose it is best to leave all the plugs in (except for the cylinder with that gage in it) while cranking, even though the cranking speed might be low, so charge up the battery beforehand. The problem here is that the cylinders are full of oil from winterizing, so the compression readings may not be accurate.
OK, so the boat is relatively new to you, and has never run correctly since you bought it, correct? I’m guessing the engine ran like this for the previous owner, he just wrote it off as needing a "tune up". Perhaps he messed with something causing the lean spit, but I guess we will never know… The whole altitude thing is a bit of a grey area, anyway of trying the rig at lower altitudes without driving for hours? Nonetheless, conventional altitude kits usually include leaner jets for higher altitude, which will only make the "sneezing" worse. An engine that sneezes at idle usually does this because it is lean. But, an ignition problem/timing issue could certainly cause the engine to lean spit also. Once again, your engine has idle air bleeds that help control idle fuel/air mix, this is another confusing issue…Putting in smaller air bleeds richens the idle mixture, which is what Dan was trying to accomplish by blocking the air bleeds off with toothpicks.
The oil injection system on this engine has been disabled, which is fine…But, how was it disabled? Is the original VRO/fuel/oil pump still in place? Keep in mind that there are two crankcase ports that supply crankcase pressure/vacuum pulses to the conventional fuel pumps, the VRO only uses one of these ports. One of the ports should be blocked off on your engine, don’t know if it is blocked with a conventional threaded plug, or just a rubber boot. A leak on one of these ports will definitely cause a lean condition/spitting. A problem with the VRO’s air motor will create a leak/lean spit, BUT that would usually mean the unit would not pump fuel so the engine would not be running, much less at high speeds. An external crankcase leak is usually easy to spot, but your crankcase is painted black, so it is not that easy. Dan mentioned that the engine will drool fuel/oil residue out of the front cover normally if the gasket/cover/bolts are not properly installed, but does it seem like there is excess fuel/oil drool on any other part of the engine? Dan also mentioned the recirculation system, perhaps one of these hoses is off the fittings/split causing an external leak.
But, I am getting a little ahead of myself here. We definitely want to check the synchronization on this engine, overlooking this will only confuse and perhaps create other problems. There are two components to synchronization, the carburetors and the ignition system. So, for now, try to take some pictures of the engine, close ups on both sides of the carburetors. I need one important picture…With the control box at dead idle, take a picture on the right side of the engine showing the throttle cam/roller and carb linkage….
Finally, you mention the engine has a 17" pitch prop, and turns up about 5000RPM, which seems normal for the base 150hp, so it would appear as thought it is developing full power. It would appear that the 1989 base 150hp does not use the quikstart feature, but we need to verify this…There is a termperature switch/sensor located near the top of each cylinder head, try to locate them. If the engine has quikstart, one temp switch will have two leads coming out of the head, one will be white the other will be tan. Non quikstart engines have a single tan lead coming out of each temp switch on top of the heads.April 2, 2018 at 3:20 pm #73354
Wow ! Some really great info here fleetwin. As far as the compression test goes; I wasnt overly concerned with what the readings are in terms of accuracy. I more want to get an idea if there are problems in any cylinders. If the readings are fairly consistent with each other I will assume that there arent any issues there. I would like to do it today, I am just a bit reluctant because I normally do the compression testing with the boat "on the muffs". Ive read that you should have the motor connected to the muffs whenever turning over for any reason. Also I didnt fill the cylinders with oil when winterizing, so I dont think that will pose any problems.
The original pump (if its part of the reservoir) is still on board. Im not sure how it was disconnected, outside of that I was told "it was done by a marine shop". I will give the connection on the crankcase a look to see if I can figure out what they used to block that port. There is usually a small amount of gas/oil mix in the pan of the cowl, not very much though. I assumed it was from overpriming when trying to get her to start. I dont think it is leaking anywhere else, its pretty clean. I will give those (if I can find em !) re circulation valve hoses a look. I will also get those pictures taken today. Im not sure if I will be able to post them though, or if that requires a paid membership. Also I believe that the motor is actually a 88′ not an 89′. The model # is J150TLXCA . The serial # is 7820921. Regardless, I will inspect the heads for the leads you mentioned and report back later. Thanks again !April 2, 2018 at 3:36 pm #73355
Well, just cranking the engine without cooling water/ear muffs is not going to hurt anything. But, the engine should never be run without cooling water going through the water pump/aka muffs. Running the rubber water pump impeller dry will melt the vanes and make a big mess.
If you are concerned about just cranking the engine without the muffs, surely you can use the muffs/water while cranking, but it is not necessary…
Perhaps you can connect the muffs, turn the water on for a bit, then remove them while doing the compression test to avoid taking a bath…
OK, sounds like your engine was a "package engine", explaining why it’s model number does not conform to the standard "introduces" format…
Nonetheless, it is a late 80s model standard 150hp.
Try posting the pics here, don’t think you have to be a paid member to post pics….You can email the pics to me if you have trouble, I will get them posted: firstname.lastname@example.org
Do me a favor and look at the model number one more time closely though, J150TLXCA seems inaccurate, the engine can not be both a 20"long and a 25" extra long model…Usually, the model number will be either a J150TXCA or J150TLCA…
DonApril 3, 2018 at 9:32 pm #73418
So heres a few pictures I took yesterday. It was too cold to compression test. This first shot is of the cams on the starboard side of the engine. This is with the lever in neutral.
. The second 2 pics are of the carb flys, also with the lever in neutral.
Attachments:April 3, 2018 at 9:45 pm #73419
The port head.
The starboard head
Starboard head from another angle
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