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Author Topic:   Problem with New 170 with Mercury 90 4 stroke
WT posted 03-26-2004 11:16 PM ET (US)   Profile for WT   Send Email to WT  
My new Montauk is the first boat I have every owned. I have never even driven a boat prior to the Montauk.

I went fishing today with no problems. This is my 3rd time out with the MT.

I got back to the dock with no problems. I lowered my trailer into the water at the ramp, no problem. I tried to start the motor to drive it onto the trailer and no juice. All my other electronics worked. I had to reel in the boat with the crank and strap.

Then I noticed that my trim would not work. I had to call my Boston Whaler dealer for help. He said that my fuse probably blew and he was correct. I had to take the engine cover off to replace the 20 amp fuse with the spare fuse that is located right next to the blown fuse.

I fish by myself and this could have turned into a very ugly situation if I were to have blown the fuse 10 miles from the dock. Cell phones do not work where I was located. I have a VHF and I going to make sure I know how to use it now.

Has this happened to anyone else?

Joe Kriz posted 03-26-2004 11:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for Joe Kriz  Send Email to Joe Kriz     

Fuses do blow.... BUT, they only blow because there is a problem somewhere.

I would not trust going out again until I located the problem... There is a short somewhere... A Bare wire toching something it is not supposed to...

Have it checked out....

Knot at Work posted 03-27-2004 10:03 AM ET (US)     Profile for Knot at Work  Send Email to Knot at Work     
60 Hours on my 2003 Montauk 90 4 stroke and not a problem yet... many many restarts....

very reliable not sure if I am gonna pay the 357 to renew a year warranty or not. Suggestions?

AQUANUT posted 03-27-2004 10:15 AM ET (US)     Profile for AQUANUT  Send Email to AQUANUT     

I would take it to the is under warranty...
i work at a b/w dearlership...there are some specific instruments to test issues of this not go probing with a multi meter...

AQUANUT posted 03-27-2004 10:21 AM ET (US)     Profile for AQUANUT  Send Email to AQUANUT     
especially if it is transferable..I opted for full six years at purchase...because if I sell at goes with the boat..makes it more saleable....and I work at a b/w...mercury dealership...the great thing about warranties for boats is they aren't like auto warrs...there are use limitations such as mileage..not for it as many hours as ya like...but i expect some day..all motors will have hourmeters..and limit the warranty to a difinitive hour useage.
jimh posted 03-27-2004 10:45 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Initially I was surprised that a 20-AMP fuse was in the circuit of the starter motor. On reflection, that fuse probably was in circuit that included the solenoid (or relay) that operates the starter motor.

Have you (or an installer) added any additional electrical loads to the circuit coming from the engine (via its harness) to the console?

An additional load, such as a VHF Marine Band Transceiver powered from a circuit that originates in the engine and is protected by this fuse, could have contributed to blowing the fuse.

It is also possible that a loose connection which caused a momentary sparking could have caused the fuse to blow.

Some insight into the circumstances of the over-current situation can often be gained by closely inspecting the fuse. If the fuse blew from a severe short circuit, the fuse cartridge will often be blackened and no trace of the fuse wire will remain. If the fuse blew from a slight over current, the fuse wire may still remain and simply have melted as intended. Of course, this assume the fuse is in a glass cartridge.

I would not suspend all use of the motor, but I would carry some extra fuses!

Having been involved in the diagnosis and repair of electrical circuits (whose complexity is vastly greater than that found on an outboard motor) for over 30 years, I have found that a close visual inspection is often the best way to gain insight into the source of electrical probems like this.

WT posted 03-27-2004 11:40 AM ET (US)     Profile for WT  Send Email to WT     
I have had a bunch of electronics added. I'll have them check it out this Wednesday.

The fuse looks kind of like a horseshoe. The old fuse and new fuse looked the same to me. But I was in the fast moving panic mode.


jimh posted 03-27-2004 03:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
You can add a ton of electronics, as long as they aren't drawing their power from the engine circuit in the wiring harness. The new 170 MONTAUK has good wiring under the console from the factory.

I was thinking maybe someone took a shortcut and wired something off of the ignition switch, something like a radio. Often in a car there are some accessories wired off of the ignition switch, but in a boat it is not a good idea.

You can tell in ten seconds what is powered via that circuit: just take the fuse out and see if any of the electronics stop working.

There is also the possibility that the fuse itself was bad or marked wrong. As others have noted, the whole boat/motor/trailer is under warranty, so it should be fixed for you promptly.

WT posted 03-27-2004 03:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for WT  Send Email to WT     

I had thought that my VHF possibly was connected to it but it and my GPS/Fishfinder was working find at the time.

Perhaps my dealer installed hour meter?

Thanks for your suggestions,

LHG posted 03-27-2004 04:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for LHG    
I think you guys are over-killing this one. It's pretty hard to tap into the engine's circuits and ignition harness. The gauge leads at the console would not cause this.

The problem is internal in the engine's electrical system, probably an overload on either the starter or power trim pump. Since this is a Yamaha powerhead, I'm not sure how the internal fuses are wired, but on a pure Merc there is a separate 20 amp fuse for both the starter circuit and the power trim circuit. I would get the engine in for service.

aubv posted 03-27-2004 08:48 PM ET (US)     Profile for aubv  Send Email to aubv     

Did your trim motor work after you replaced the fuse?

WT posted 03-27-2004 09:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for WT  Send Email to WT     

Yes, both trims (on the motor and on the shifter) work and the motor started after I changed the fuse,


ghefty posted 03-28-2004 07:29 AM ET (US)     Profile for ghefty  Send Email to ghefty     
The additional electronics are not the likely culprit: " All my other electronics worked." I seem to recall another thread with the same symptoms last year: electrical systems worked but no power to the trim or ignition. I don;t remember the resolution.

We cannot discount the possibility that it could have been a weak fuse. Although, I would have the engine checked by the dealer. After that I would replace the spare under the cowling and add a couple of extras to my onboard supply. At the same time you may want to confirm that you have spare fueses for the other installed electronics, specifically the VHF.

WT you picked a great first boat and if you are going to have a problem: having it at the ramp when pulling out after an otherwise great day of fishing is a good place.

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