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Bravo X ???

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Old 01-22-2008, 07:21 PM
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Default Bravo X ???

This hopefully my last thread on what has become a 3 part series on how to build a RELIABLE,SAFE and FAMILY friendly 80+ mph bowrider.It started with (496HO UPGRADES??) then (MECHANICAL STEERING FAILURES) now (BRAVO X ???).I guess my question is this... Is the Bravo X strong enough to handle my 496HO with a 525 Raylar kit.I tend to run the boat on the aggresive side and dont want to have mechanical problems the days I'm out with my kids. Are there any upgrades that can br done to the drive to increase it's durability.Everyone's help has been great, so thanks.Kevin
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Old 01-22-2008, 07:38 PM
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This hopefully my last thread on what has become a 3 part series on how to build a RELIABLE,SAFE and FAMILY friendly 80+ mph bowrider.It started with (496HO UPGRADES??) then (MECHANICAL STEERING FAILURES) now (BRAVO X ???).I guess my question is this... Is the Bravo X strong enough to handle my 496HO with a 525 Raylar kit.I tend to run the boat on the aggresive side and dont want to have mechanical problems the days I'm out with my kids. Are there any upgrades that can br done to the drive to increase it's durability.Everyone's help has been great, so thanks.Kevin
It should be fine but you can take some precautions to ensure longevity:

Change to synthetic gear oil and dump the Merc green fluid of death. I like Redline Heavy Shockproof but some use the lightweight version.

Install a drive shower to keep the temperatures down

Stay away from Lefthand rotation props, they load the top plate bearing and "can" cause premature failure in high HP applications.
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Old 01-23-2008, 06:22 AM
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Frequent oil changes, easy out of the hole, and try not to run WOT for too long, this really heats up the drive. Heat is the real killer. A drive shower will help keep the outside clean, not alot more.

Fact, your drive will break, just a matter of time. You can choose to rebuild it before it breaks or wait till there is a failure like the vast majority of the boating pop.

Sounds like you are learning what it takes to go faster, safely. Good on you, many don't care about safety, just the speed.
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Old 01-23-2008, 07:55 AM
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Frequent oil changes, easy out of the hole, and try not to run WOT for too long, this really heats up the drive. Heat is the real killer. A drive shower will help keep the outside clean, not alot more.

Fact, your drive will break, just a matter of time. You can choose to rebuild it before it breaks or wait till there is a failure like the vast majority of the boating pop.

Sounds like you are learning what it takes to go faster, safely. Good on you, many don't care about safety, just the speed.
I would agree about regular maintenance as well as preventive rebuilds but I tend to disagree about the value of a drive shower as well as your assertion that he WILL break the drive.

The X drive is heartier than the older standard B1 and I ran a B1 for over 200 hours behind 540 HP on a 280 Velocity without a single failure. That included competing in 1 APBA race, numerous poker runs as well as A LOT of 6000 RPM running up and down the coast. IMHO drive showers DO reduce the temperature inside the drive, I ran a drive temperature gauge and saw as much as a 30 degree drop in drive oil temps under high speed testing. It's not anecdotal evidence, we have the real temperature measurements.

525 HP in front of a Bravo 1X with Redline oil (replaced every 20 - 30 hours) and a good multi port drive shower should be enough insurance to prevent a catastrophic failure unless this boat is getting launched off waves at a clip equivalent to an offshore race. If it's truly run that hard then investing in some after market upgrades might be the thing to do but from what I"ve read from his posts that would be a waste of money at this point.
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Old 01-23-2008, 08:51 AM
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As far as drive showers go, I actualy did a small test with a drive temp gage. There was no difference with the shower on, or off. The temp climbed the same and got just as hot. Now, I'm pushing 700 + hp into an XR bravo, so maybe nothing but a dry sump oil cooler will help me.

But for those of you that say a drive shower works, can you please post results of your testing, preferably with a drive temp gage so you get real internal oil temp.

Don't just tell some they work because the outer drive is cleaner, that doesn't mean schit.
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Old 01-23-2008, 08:56 AM
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Hmmmmm What kind of drive shower were you using? I can't see how a drive shower wouldn't make some kind of difference. I would love to ditch the drive shower on my Pachanga if it is useless because I could raise my drive a bit farther! I swapped an alpha for a Bravo...I can't raise the drive all the way up because it hits the built in swim platform.

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As far as drive showers go, I actualy did a small test with a drive temp gage. There was no difference with the shower on, or off. The temp climbed the same and got just as hot. Now, I'm pushing 700 + hp into an XR bravo, so maybe nothing but a dry sump oil cooler will help me.

But for those of you that say a drive shower works, can you please post results of your testing, preferably with a drive temp gage so you get real internal oil temp.

Don't just tell some they work because the outer drive is cleaner, that doesn't mean schit.
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Old 01-23-2008, 08:57 AM
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Switch to synthetic (Amsoil, Redline, Royal Purple), do frequent lube changes, add a good drive shower (Simrek, etc.), and don't abuse the drive and it should hold up just fine. I would not upgrade the drive. I've seen older, standard Bravo's that are much weaker than your X hold up on a 38 Powerquest with 525SC's.
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Old 01-23-2008, 09:46 AM
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I just picked up a 28 AT with an X drive mated to a Merc Racing 525. The boat originally had a 496 HO. I am upgrading the drive to an XR mainly for my piece of mind. The X is rated at 450 HP and the XR at 600 HP. I know many people have run a lot more HP through each of those drives, but I boat in LI sound where you are out of the water 10-20% of the time. I am going to get the XR cheap through my mechanic and keep the X as a spare. That way if I do break a drive, I dont have any down time.
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Old 01-23-2008, 11:19 AM
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If you are jittery about the X there are many XR's listed in the classifieds that you could purchase. You could then keep the X for a backup or sell it to offset the cost of the XR. XR would give you added piece of mind.
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Old 01-23-2008, 02:52 PM
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the xdrive has a steel tower in it like the xr, the gears in a xr are stronger but don't wear as good as the x gears which wear wear longer but are weaker, I had a 1988 b1 drive that had 18yrs on it, been raced with, jumped with and had 600hp on it for 11yrs, when I WENT TO A 2''SHORTIE DRIVE in 06. which was stolen in 07, Now I have a 07 x drive with a polished 2'' shortie with some help from oso guys, can't wait to try it out. so the x should be fine as long as you don't nail it out of the hole that also breaks coupliers spun, and prop hubs. did that in 88 learned my lession. GO FOR IT. ART
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