89 Stratos 285 Problems

Discussion in 'Stratos Boat Owners Showcase' started by oldschool71, Aug 22, 2013.

  1. oldschool71 New Member

    I am having a number of problems with my 285 pro. I am new to bass boats so some of my questions may seem a little silly but here goes. Background of the boat. 1989 Stratos 285 pro with an 89 Evinrude 175xp with a 13.5x25 Shooter prop. With myself and my buddy in the boat I am able to achieve 5,000 rpms. I have never been able to do better then the 5,000. I am not worried about speed but I believe that the boat should perform better then that. The hole shot is terrible. The motor has been to a shop and had the compression checked and the motor is healthy.

    1. Shouldn't this motor turn about 5500 rpms?
    2. The hole shot is terrible.
    3. When running WOT the boat is very difficult to handle in turns. This may be my inexperience with a bass boat but it seems to want to slide through turns. I did have a scare with the boat one time where it actually turned extremely sharp and I almost was not able to straighten it out again.

    After reading so much about the motors sitting too low in the water I raised the motor on the boat one hole so that it is now in the second to hole from the bottom. The pin that stops the motor from trimming down all of the way is in the very bottom hole so that the motor sits at a negative angle with regards to the transom of the boat. Raising the motor did seem to help with the hole shot. I did notice that with the motor raised one bolt hole I am now getting a small rooster tail that I did not get before. Another thing I have noticed it that I can trim my motor very high and it does not cavitate. Any help that you guys can give me will be greatly appreciated. I am just not sure where to start i.e. jackplate, prop???
  2. Darth VMAX Allison Boats Officer


    Some prop experimenting and of course a Jack-plate will help I believe.

    If I remember correctly the GT/XP Cross-Flow's "normal" operating range was 5250-5750 rpm. So to answer your RPM question. YES, you are running low. When you raised it, did your RPMs go up? Even just a little? Assuming all things are fine with the motor and your tach, I would prop your boat to run as close to the 5750 as you can.

    There are better props out there for you to run. Even if you stay with OMC props, the Raker and Renegade (4-blade) will perform better than the shooter does.

    A jackplate offers many advantages. It places your prop in "cleaner" water. It also allows your outboard to get more leverage in lifting the hull out of the water. You can also fine tune your optimum performance with easy adjustments of the porp-shaft height.
  3. oldschool71 New Member

    Thanks for the reply. The rpms do increase some while trimming but the maximum that I can get is 5,000. I am surprised that it is very difficult to get the motor to cavitate.
  4. gonefishing7903 New Member's Liason

    Overbrook, Ok, USA

    A note of cation since you said your new to bass boats. Turning at wot has to be done gradually, the boat wanting to slide thru a fast turn is normal, but you need to be able to expect it and control it as the driver. My kids love for me to get my boat to slide, my wife hates it and i usually get hit once she can pry her death grip loose
  5. oldschool71 New Member

    Thank you for the advise about the steering and that is exactly what I have come to expect from the boat but it seems to get to a point where it is sliding and it will all of the sudden grab and the boat will turn very sharply. I have been boating for a very long time but my experience has been with flatbottoms and cigarette style boats.
  6. Darth VMAX Allison Boats Officer


    One note before you run out and buy a jack-plate. Like mentioned they give the motor more leverage. With this, there is obviously added stress placed on the boat. Beings your boat is a 1989 (wood transom) I would ensure your transom is able to endure this. If its free from moisture (rot) then you will be just fine. But if there is any suspect of moisture, I would have it fixed.
  7. oldschool71 New Member

    I have gone through and checked my hull and transom for any signs of rot and have found none. There are no stress cracks in the gel coat to indicate rot either. I think I am leaning more towards prop first and then jack plate. I guess I was trying to see what others may have to say about their setups with a 175xp as well.
  8. Darth VMAX Allison Boats Officer


    I would contact Jay Martin here on BBM (Prop Moderator) and see what he reccomends for your set-up. He may have something for you sitting around.

    Thats great to hear about your rig. If on a budget, you can usually find some used Jack-plates that can be had for a good price (if you decide to get one...which I highly reccomend doing so). For your rig, I would stick with 6 min to 8 max inches of set-back.

    I had a 268DC Stratos with 7" of set-back and it was perfect. Its just hard to find an odd number like that now a days.
  9. oldschool71 New Member

    Thank you for the advise, I have sent him an email and asked if him to look at my setup to see what he would recommend.
  10. Jay Martin BBM Prop Doctor

    Greenville, Ms

    Ok I found you oldschool...:party0045:....

    First of all we need to know what the prop shaft to pad height is, to find this out you must first get the boat level on level ground, tilt your engine down with a level on the prop shaft untill level, now measure form the center of the prop shaft to the ground, write it down...Now about 6 inchs ahead of the trailing egde of the boats pad take a measurement there form center of pad to ground. take those two measurements and tell us what the difference is, it should be (if set up right) between 2.5 and 3 inchs.

    Let us know.

    Also I know you said the compression is good but Has it been de-carboned? this could bring more RPM's, I've seen a gain of 300 rpm's from doing this. Also make sure your getting wide open throttle, this may take two people to do, if you have a hotfoot it will take two. open the throttle all the way at the hotfoot or control box then go to the engine to see if the cable is pulling the butterflys open all the way on the carbs.

    One other thing, a compression test showing good does not always mean the motor is fully healthy. A leak down check on each cylinder will.
  11. oldschool71 New Member

    The pad to prop measurement was about 5" that is until I raised the motor on the transom. I am now at 4". I have not had it de-carboned. I guess that will be one of the next things that I will look at. Is this some thing that needs to be done at a shop or is it some thing that I can do myself? I can have my local shop do a leak down test on it to see. If the leak down test shows anything what will I see from a performance stand point with the boat, low rpms, loss of power???
  12. Darth VMAX Allison Boats Officer


    Great points as well. I totally missed on the ensuring Wide Open Throttle is being attained. Thanks Jay

    Great seeing you. :cheers:
  13. Jay Martin BBM Prop Doctor

    Greenville, Ms

    Try coming up to 3 inchs and test, if it gets better start going up a 1/4 inch a time untill you loose speed, keep an eye on the watre pressure guage also.

    if it gets worse do the oposite, drop it 1/4 at a time untill it gets to its best.

    Yes you can do the de-carbon yourself, you will need a flush thats connected to your water hose.

    Mercury makes some called power tune, Johnson has its version also, they work the same, just follow the directions on the can.

    A can of seafoam added to the gas won't hurt either, do the same on it follow the directions on the can per amount needed to how much gas is in the boat.

    one more question, while fully trimed is there any rooster tail? if so how high? knee high is ok anything higher is hurting you.
  14. oldschool71 New Member

    I will try to come up to 3 inches but I am limited to the holes on the engine plate. I do not have a jackplate for my boat so I only have the four holes in the engine mount. I am at the second to last hole now so I can only raise it one more hole which should put me close to the 3" mark. I am concerned about the prop that I am using on my boat as well. I have had a lot of people tell me that the 25 shooter is a junk prop and that I should be running a 22 or 23 pitch prop or at the very most a 24 Raker.
  15. Jay Martin BBM Prop Doctor

    Greenville, Ms

    Ok, no jackplate just changed everything.....Your best bet is to find another prop as you just stated.

    The Shooter is old school, there are much better props and the Raker would be a great choice, a 23 pitch with your setup should be great.

    If the motor is at 4 like you said and you can go up at least one more hole..Do it!!!
  16. oldschool71 New Member

    I will raise the motor to the last hole and give it a try. It seems odd having the motor sitting that high on the back of the boat. I will try and find a 23 pitch prop. Do you have any recommendations for prop type in a 23 pitch for my motor?
  17. Jay Martin BBM Prop Doctor

    Greenville, Ms

    Yes, The Raker.

    I suggest buying a good used or new 6 inch jackplate, it will make great changes...
  18. oldschool71 New Member

    I am not seeing a Raker in a 23 pitch. I am only finding the Raker offered in a 22 and 24 pitch.
  19. Jay Martin BBM Prop Doctor

    Greenville, Ms

    That's right they only come in even sizes . Since your needing so many RPM's go with the 22 pitch. That should put u at the top of the rpm range your motor needs. Holeshot will be improved also.
  20. Darth VMAX Allison Boats Officer


    What do you think about a renegade Jay? They do come in odd # pitch (ie. 21, 23, 25, 27)
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