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What problem areas in a 1980 38' scarab

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Old 04-29-2002, 06:18 PM
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Default What problem areas in a 1980 38' scarab

I am looking to buy a 1980 38' scarab flat deck. It has twin 454 with Gale Banks turbos and speedmater drives. What # of drives are these. And what problem areas should I look at?

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Old 04-29-2002, 06:26 PM
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Is it a Wellcraft or a
Larry Smith Team Scarab
Boat?
Check the ID # on the Stbd
transom.
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Old 04-29-2002, 06:31 PM
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Those look like Speedmaster II drives...and apparently very difficult to get parts for.
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Old 04-29-2002, 07:14 PM
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The hull number is Wela4649m80f-377. So what does this make it?
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Old 04-29-2002, 07:47 PM
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Wellcraft.....
I was with team Scarab and
they keep records of most boats they build.
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Old 04-29-2002, 10:15 PM
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i've heard the old scarabs had big problems with stinger and transom rot. Have it checked out by a surveroy if possible. And if they are SSMII drives every now and again someone on here is looking for parts. And they seem to be becomign more and more scarce. The good news is TRS drive can bolt right up in place of them they are shorter than the ssm2 drives so it will rasie your xdim i think 1.5"
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Old 04-30-2002, 12:51 AM
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For the most part ,turbo charged boats have no low end power and are hard to get on plane . Most use a 2 speed trans to plane . Also ,they seam to be very tempermental with turbos and I hear are prone to motor problems . Turbo motors are very hard to get a carb to work good with it to get the right fuel curve all the way through the rpm range . When they get lean they go BANG !!!! Just my .02 .

Maybe take turbos off and put blowers on ........
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Old 04-30-2002, 08:05 AM
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I was told once by a good surveyer that Welcraft didn't do a good job of sealing the exhaust tips to the transom, which allowed water in. That area should be checked closely for rot.
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Old 04-30-2002, 08:45 AM
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They also did not do a good job of sealing the limber holes in the stringers on some models-this is another area to check carefully.

Ditto what boot said about turbo boat motors.
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Old 04-30-2002, 10:15 AM
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Stringer and transom rot are almost always a problem in the older Scarabs. The top deck is foam cored with plywood around the hatches. If that plywood is wet, the deck is almost certainly delaminating. Check for lengthwise gelcoat cracks. This can be an indication of delamination or excessive flexing. Check the hull/deck joint to see if its just screwed together, thru bolted, or glassed. I've seen all three, not sure if they were factory though. The screwd together ones will be the weakest.
It's got SSM IIs. Parts are getting VERY expensive and hard to find. If you blow one, you would probably be better off bolting up a TRS. The X dimension will be 2" higher, so you'll probably have to strip the front cabin and move as much weight back as is possible for it to run well with the TRS drives. BTW, TRS drives are also on their way out.
Turbos generate a lot of heat when driven hard, and that's really bad for marine engines. They can be reliable if the engine is built for them and you treat them right. My guess would be that someone bolted these turbos to a relatively high compression engine (over 8:1) and they're probably not going to last long. You may want to consider purchasing without power.
It's almost certainly got BW Velvet drive trannys, but make sure they're not Mercs trannys.
Other than that, you're buying a boat over 20 years old, expect to replace the guages, wiring harness, and go through EVERYTHING if you want a reliable boat.
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