Salt Water & Outdrives

Discussion in 'Newbie Lounge - NEW' started by Army Captain, Jul 16, 2019.

  1. Army Captain

    Army Captain New Member

    Jul 16, 2019
    I am seriously considering purchasing a 2016 Sea Ray - 310 Sundancer and docking it in salt water slip in the San Diego Bay. I have read several forums stating this is a big mistake and I will experience significant corrosion of the Bravo III outdrive.

    Unfortunately, I am hooked on the Sea Ray and I cannot come close to finding another cruiser that fits all my needs.

    Please let me know your thoughts.

  2. scoflaw

    scoflaw Well-Known Member

    Aug 10, 2011
    cape cod mass, cape coral fl
    1999 Powerquest legend 260 sx
    502 mpi Bravo 1
    Love I/O's never been a problem for me , slipping for 6 months in the NE. Thick coat of Trilux 33. and keep an eye on your anodes. Fear not
    b_arrington, Espos4 and JVM225 like this.
  3. sbw1

    sbw1 Well-Known Member

    Oct 10, 2006
    West Michigan
    This is listed in my signature
    This is listed in my signature
    IMG_4230.JPG Wet slipping I/O boats in salt water is an expensive proposition. If you have the bucks, go for it. Not something I would consider, but it's your decision.
  4. Gord

    Gord New Member

    Oct 12, 2013
    280 Sundancer 2003
    Twin 5.0 MPI w/Bravo III
    My boat came from the northeast where it was trailered and they were able to rinse the engines and the drives but they were not able to rinse the steering pins. That cost me over 8000. to replace the pins and one complete transom assembly. Along with new bellows and shift cables. Just a FYI, I had to replace the pins because they leak water into the bilage
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2019
  5. JVM225

    JVM225 Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 8, 2008
    Farmingdale, NY
    2002 410 Sundancer, Monaco Edition.
    3126 Cats.
    That’s it!
    My old 87 30 Sundancer spent its life in saltwater and when I sold it in 2016 it still had the original starboard drive. I swapped the port out for a counter rotating drive several years earlier and sold the original port drive.
    Lots of older I/O boats around here.
    Maintenance is key.
  6. KevinC

    KevinC Well-Known Member

    Feb 25, 2011
    Long Island, NY
    2004 340 Sundancer
    Twin 8.1 V-drives
    I had the B3 in my 260da. No problems but maintenance is the key. Proper anodes, bottom paint gap, good bonding and like scoflaw said keep a good coat of trilux paint on.

    Espos4 likes this.
  7. El Capitan

    El Capitan Active Member

    Jul 9, 2014
    Chicago IL./Vero Beach, Fl
    1970 SRV 180 w 2.5L Mercruiser.
    2000 Ford Expedition Eddie Bauer
    120HP Mercruiser
    Agree 110%. I slipped Bravo I/o in salt. It corroded so bad I had to install another external water pickup.

    I eventually lost the entire drive unit to salt corrosion and electrolysis.

    Find a V-drive or straight shaft model.
  8. Henry Boyd

    Henry Boyd Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 24, 2007
    Newburyport, on the peaceful and serene Merrimack
    ‘09 Sabre 38 Hardtop Express “Serenity”
    Volvo D6 w/IPS450 Pods

    Comments pro and con are both correct if you look at the locations of the posters. Six months a year in colder water temps and gobs of trilux will yield longer outdrive life. The rate of corrosion is a direct function of exposure and water temp. The length of time is obvious, water temp is a little more complicated. Chemical reactions (and corrosion is a chemical reaction) have higher reaction rates as the temp of the environment increases. Additionally warmer water usually goes hand in hand with higher salinity; higher surface temps equal greater water evaporation.

    If your water temp is like Florida or the Caribbean, bad plan doomed to failure. Water temp like New England, with a good slathering of trilux and you’ve got a fighting chance. But a 12 month season is going to be a challenge. You might want to consider hauling every six months to inspect and replace the anodes. Stuff like this I’m a big fan of out of water visual inspection instead of relying on divers.
    PMC likes this.
  9. Espos4

    Espos4 Well-Known Member

    Jan 1, 2017
    Long Island NY
    2007 240 Sundeck
    350 MAG Bravo 3 W/DTS
    Same here.

    2007 B3 outdrive looks good as new (although it won’t win any beauty contests with the Trilux 33 on it!)
  10. BillK2632

    BillK2632 Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Jun 25, 2009
    Lake Norman, NC
    1999 185 Bowrider,
    Mercruiser 4.3, Alpha I
    Not just salt water - for a wet slipped boat outdrives are just going to be more maintenance, some people will fair better than others. No more outdrive boats for me unless it is dry stored. Seen that movie and know how it ends.
  11. sbw1

    sbw1 Well-Known Member

    Oct 10, 2006
    West Michigan
    This is listed in my signature
    This is listed in my signature
    IMG_4230.JPG IMG_3891.JPG
    Same thing around my location. I am a maintenance freak and the outdrive on my 260 SR looked like hexx after just two seasons in the water. In addition to repainting it on a regular schedule, the other stuff started to go from use. I replaced the u-joints, boot and gimbal bearing, but it was mostly repainting the darn thing. The primer was expensive and the color coat not cheap. I did however put nearly 4000 hours on it and it never broke. But it was always ugly.
  12. fwebster

    fwebster Well-Known Member TECHNICAL Contributor PLATINUM Sponsor

    Oct 6, 2006
    Middle Tennessee ; Panama City Beach, FL
    1996 450DA
    3116 Caterpillars
    Notice that the responses that say "go for it" are from Northern members who keep boats in the water only 5-6 months a year and the water is below. the temperatures that marine growth will tolerate.

    I live in the South where we use our boats all year and nobody leaves an outdrive, much less a Bravo III, in the water more than a few days at a timeless they are using the boat. All I/O powered boats are kept one trailers or dry stacked. Besides corrosion and marine growth to consider is the increased maintenance. Bravo III owners have their outdrives removed and serviced twice a year; other single prop drives are serviced every year regardless of the hours they put on them.

    If you keep a Bravo III in the water in San Diego you will soon get to know the service people at your marina on a first name basis and will have the service manager on speed dial.

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