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Looking at a Spectra 18...good or bad?

Quicksilver

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I'm looking at purchasing a 1974 Spectra 18 with a 460 Ford and Berkeley JE jet. I've done a little research on this model and I know the fiberglass gas tanks will eventually have to be replaced and that the JE jet can't be fitted with a droop snoot. The boat is in another state but from the pictures it looks to have been very well cared for by its previous owners. The engine was also rebuilt about 10 hours ago and has some mild mods done to it. I was wondering if there are any weird quirks to this model that I should be aware of? Those of you that have had one how did you like it? Any upgrades I should do before next season? I will definately take it out on the water before I buy. Thanks
 

Motor Boater

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If its the one for sale in Scottsdale AZ, its a nice boat. I know the owner and he is a really good guy. Buy it!
 

Riverbound

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I had an 18. Great boat and rides like its much larger than your average 18 foot boat. Putting a diverter on the e pump will make worlds of difference.

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AzGeo

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You can install a 'split bowl' on an "E pump" you just need a bowl and some time to work out the steering and control cables.
 

Riverbound

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You can install a 'split bowl' on an "E pump" you just need a bowl and some time to work out the steering and control cables.
yes you can, but due to the design of the E and the spectra hull there is no need for it. I spent a boatload of money on my 18 pump and motor. there are numerous limitations. they are crusiers not race boats ;)

Here is my 18 that I had. I do have a soft spot for them

 

SPECTRABRENT

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yes you can, but due to the design of the E and the spectra hull there is no need for it. I spent a boatload of money on my 18 pump and motor. there are numerous limitations. they are crusiers not race boats ;)

Here is my 18 that I had. I do have a soft spot for them

Riverbound,

FYI,

The Spectra 18 was good enduro hull in the early 1970's, it was first jet to finish & win the Parker 9 hour!

But your right the Spectra 18 with the "E" pump is just a cruiser.

Brent
 

AzGeo

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yes you can, but due to the design of the E and the spectra hull there is no need for it. I spent a boatload of money on my 18 pump and motor. there are numerous limitations. they are crusiers not race boats ;)

Here is my 18 that I had. I do have a soft spot for them

Well I disagree ! I do know the bottom of that hull pretty well ( I have been asked to rig some as V-drives and jets) and if it has the HOOK removed the 'short snoot' will really make a major difference. VERY SORRY that you got "F'd" and spent a "boatload of money" on a turd ? (your comments) Also very SORRY for all the money thrown at your 'soft spot'. HA HA I made a simple EDUCATED comment to a question here then you and your ego seem to think that YOU are the ONLY GUY to ever work (or pay someone to work on) one of these bars of soap. IMHO it's wet and needs to be balanced way back (move the tanks and everything back) on the transom (for a jet). This means it needs a larger ride plate (than the original E pump one) and it can use a 'tear drop' on the keel for the water intake through rough water. I had extensive contact with these hulls when George Haskell had the molds in his shop in North Hollywood Calif. (in the early 1980's) I worked with a few customers who wanted real high performance out of those hulls. My customers were happy, and they all paid CASH.
 

SofaKingFast

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I just sold my 1976 18 spectra. It had a 460(original) and a berk "e" pump. I installed a hyd place diverter and that made all the difference. The boat still had the fiberglass tanks. It would run about 58 full of beer people and gas. The motor was as stock as stock gets. The pump was rebuilt by me. It rode really nice around Parker, big river ect.
 

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Riverbound

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Well I disagree ! I do know the bottom of that hull pretty well ( I have been asked to rig some as V-drives and jets) and if it has the HOOK removed the 'short snoot' will really make a major difference. VERY SORRY that you got "F'd" and spent a "boatload of money" on a turd ? (your comments) Also very SORRY for all the money thrown at your 'soft spot'. HA HA I made a simple EDUCATED comment to a question here then you and your ego seem to think that YOU are the ONLY GUY to ever work (or pay someone to work on) one of these bars of soap. IMHO it's wet and needs to be balanced way back (move the tanks and everything back) on the transom (for a jet). This means it needs a larger ride plate (than the original E pump one) and it can use a 'tear drop' on the keel for the water intake through rough water. I had extensive contact with these hulls when George Haskell had the molds in his shop in North Hollywood Calif. (in the early 1980's) I worked with a few customers who wanted real high performance out of those hulls. My customers were happy, and they all paid CASH.
Wow! First off where did I say I got. "F-D"? And secondly where did I say it was a turd? Just stating the general facts in regards to the hull. I guess if we are talking egos yours shows through in your post. As shown in your post, there is quite a bit that has to be done to the Hull to make it high performance hull. I congratulate you on your customers ability to pay cash, have no idea what relevance that has to the thread at hand? Education would be telling the original poster that just going to a split bowl and putting a droop on the boat in question will do little for performance whereas the money can be spent better elsewhere.


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Riverbound

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Riverbound,

FYI,

The Spectra 18 was good enduro hull in the early 1970's, it was first jet to finish & win the Parker 9 hour!

But your right the Spectra 18 with the "E" pump is just a cruiser.

Brent
If its the boat I think it is that he is looking at. Its the same set up my old boat was. 460, E pump, no full stringers. Of course that could just be my ego talking.....lol ;)

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Quicksilver

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This is the boat I'm looking at...

http://phoenix.craigslist.org/nph/boa/2604932529.html

I just plan to use the boat out on the lake and river for a little fishing and going to the beach. I'd like to leave it as close to original as possible. Small improvements like a place diverter will definately be in the works.

Thanks for the replys. I'm loving the pics too.
 

Quicksilver

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Have any of you guys replaced your fuel tanks? If so, do you have any pictures of what you had to do?

And is there anything to look out for that would tell me whether or not the pump might be going out?
 

Riverbound

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Have any of you guys replaced your fuel tanks? If so, do you have any pictures of what you had to do?

And is there anything to look out for that would tell me whether or not the pump might be going out?
Replacing the tanks is not too dificult depending on the condition of the tanks that are in there now. In my old 18 the glass tanks had to be cut out, then new bulkheads for the alum tanks needed to be installed. installing the new tanks was simple.

Hopefully that post wasn't too egotistical :D
 

Riverbound

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Just Electric

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i had one loved it but ther is some tricks to get them to ride outta water but a little tweeking and its posible. mine was a mild 460 with an e pump and did i beat the piss out of it and it kept going and had little stress cracks :thumbsup. i did get mine to air out more but i did trim the hook down lengthen the plate and ran a slight blocker on the loader and it would air out look at pick 3 just my opinon
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Quicksilver

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i had one loved it but ther is some tricks to get them to ride outta water but a little tweeking and its posible. mine was a mild 460 with an e pump and did i beat the piss out of it and it kept going and had little stress cracks :thumbsup. i did get mine to air out more but i did trim the hook down lengthen the plate and ran a slight blocker on the loader and it would air out look at pick 3 just my opinon
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Nice. :D

I'm going to test the boat tomorrow and bring it home with me if everything looks good.
 

Skee

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Replacing the tanks is not too dificult depending on the condition of the tanks that are in there now. In my old 18 the glass tanks had to be cut out, then new bulkheads for the alum tanks needed to be installed. installing the new tanks was simple.

Hopefully that post wasn't too egotistical :D
I did this to mine...it was not to difficult,but the 21 gallon tank's with fuel sender's,I had made from IMCO were $800....but well worth it...I love my Lil' "jetbote" :p :D...Its definately not no race boat,but I sure have a shit load of fun it with my Kids...and to me...thats what it's all about! :thumbsup :D
 

stickman07

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looks real nice. I've got close to 10 G's in my rebuild & still not done. For the asking price I don't see how ya could go wrong. Mine is a 20 but have had it for 24 years & won't ever sell it now. Check my thread, budget out the window. I cut out the tanks, built bulkheads for mounting the tanks etc... You'll love the Spectra, especially for the $$$. Just my non-egotisticle $0.02 worth...:D
 

Riverbound

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looks real nice. I've got close to 10 G's in my rebuild & still not done. For the asking price I don't see how ya could go wrong. Mine is a 20 but have had it for 24 years & won't ever sell it now. Check my thread, budget out the window. I cut out the tanks, built bulkheads for mounting the tanks etc... You'll love the Spectra, especially for the $$$. Just my non-egotisticle $0.02 worth...:D
LOL. :D
 

Quicksilver

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I just got home a little while ago from Phoenix with the boat. I'm glad I got it but now I've got a winter project/ bottomless money pit on my hands.

I wanted to run the boat on the lake before I bought it and I'm glad I did. I ran across some issues I need to address: The cable that puts the boat in reverse is broken and will have to be replaced. We pulled the broken cable out of the end and then couldn't get it to go back in. The seller said the boat had a bimini top (he had never tried to install it) and we found that there's no way the top could ever work on the boat. The valve covers leak oil onto the exhaust manifolds. I need to rewire the trailer lights as some of them don't work and the insulation on the wires is brittle and cracking off. I also need to paint the trailer as the previous owner only got done painting half of it. The engine has a vibration that gets worse with rpm's (could be harmonic balancer, bent shaft, damaged impeller, or?). The windshield will need to be replaced as it has tons of little cracks in it.

On the plus side I found out the boat is a 1976 and not a 1974 like I had thought. The hull is in pretty nice shape and the interior looks brand new. The fuel tanks seem to be holding ok. The engine fires right up and the boat gets from idle to cruise like its nothing. I was really surprised how this things gets out of the hole compared to other jets I've been on. The boat seems to handle rough water better than I thought it would too. I spent some time testing areas on the boat with compound and it looks like it will buff out real nice. :thumbsup

So now the build begins. I intend to get a place diverter but was not sure what comes with the kit. Does it come with longer cables that replace the ones I have? If so, I'll just buy the kit instead of replacing the broken cable I have now.

Thanks for all the help. Here's a pic of how it looks now:

 
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76spectrajohn

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I have the same boat in green. Man, I love this boat. Great choice, clean too.
 

SofaKingFast

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That looks just like my old boat. The diverter only comes with the nozzle. If you go hydraulic, which is the best way for that boat IMO, you will still need to replace your cables.
 

Quicksilver

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I tore the engine down yesterday and found the source of the vibration: a flexplate made for an externally balanced engine on an internally balanced crankshaft. The cylinders have some light scuffing but it appears that it just needs a hone. Now its time to order some parts.

So far I have replaced both hubs on the trailer, complete with bearings, seals, studs, and lug nuts. I rewired and replaced most of the lights on the trailer as half of them didn't work and the PO had orange lights on the back of the trailer. I bought a new coupler that I need to have welded up.

My internet has been effed up lately but I should have a new ISP tomorrow so hopefully I can post pics of the progress.
 
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