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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Looking at a 1998 18 ft Bayliner with a force 120, boat is in great shape, but it has a starting issue.

Starter spins but not enough to start the motor, Motor turns over fine though.

Could this be an easy fix or should I run for the hills?
 

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Force is a pretty simple engine, but is known for having issues. Parts are sometimes hard to find, too. The Force out board started as Chrysler, then US Marine, then Mercury.
 

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If you can get it for a decent number it would be worth runnung a compression test. That will tell ya if the "engine" is an anchor or not.
Carbs can be cleaned although e85 can eat some shit up and I can't remember what years they started making things compatible with alcoholand ignition shit is bolt on if available but will require some diag.
Had a buddy back in the day that worked at a marina and he always said force were mercury rejects ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Ok thanks for the input, Boat was garaged it's whole life and was pretty much mint. But the 2 stroke Force not running changed my mind, they were only asking 3K

 

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Bayliner and Force were the cheapest of the cheap. But that doesn't mean that they should be avoided at all costs. A slow starter would only concern me if it were because the powerhead was tight. If it were an electrical issue and not a mechanical issue, then no big deal. Check it out and try to steal it. But only if the motor is not seized.
 

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Sort of like a 6.0 Ford. Easy to fix but you fix them a lot
 

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There would be several reasons for a hard starting 2 stroke, everything from a draggy starter to a simple carb/fuel issue to low compression to electrcal to a bad crankcase seal.

If your dead set on it then I would remove fuel, check for fire on each plug and do a compression check on each cylinder and run a ohms check on the secondary side of the ign coils. A compression test and a crankcase pressure test will tell you about everything to need know but a crankcase pressure test would be pretty impractical on a motor looking to buy.

I think common sense might be in.play her and don't by a engine that dont run. I've known several friends who bought running boats and perfectly happy and didn't know they had a down/bad cylinder by not hearing the engine lugging and not achieving the proper rpm at wot. I've been the bearer of bad news twice to friends who were happy until I pointed out a problem. Both times being one cylider low on compression with a small exhaust stick/seizeure.
 

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That is cheap as shit for a boat.

I am not a big fan of Force motors, but for that kind of money for a boat, motor and trailer, I would be all over that. I bet you could get it for 2K not running.

Swap the starter or tighten the battery cables and go have some fun.
 

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check the kill switch, it should be next to the throttle lever.
sometimes curious kids flip the switch off. Or owners by mistake.
old Mercury kill switches were a small red toggle with a lanyard loop around it.

If it has spark, see if it will run on an external fuel tank, with proper oil of course.
fuel system can get messsed up with e10 ethanol gasoline. often The rubber hoses collapse internally from fuel pump suction even though they look fine on the outside.

due to the low value of bayliners and force, don’t buy unless you can get it running for a proper sea trial.
 

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Check the grounds. I had a slow turning starter had the starter rebuilt it still did the same thing. I happened to see a spark where the ground cable attached to the block I cleaned and tightened the cable it has worked fine since then.
 

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Force motors are junk, Depending on the year the ignition systems were really bad, The later model stuff was changed over to Mercury ignition and charging systems and it helped some but at the end of the day it is still a 70's design motor that has had the name changed but still junk. Let alone a Bayliner from that vintage are junk also.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Well my dumb ass got buzzed and bought it, hung out with the seller for a few hours and went into extreme detail of the boats history.

Got it home, checked all the wiring, swapped the starter and it fired right up. The motor and boat may be cheap junk but it seems to run just fine. Daytona Beach brings bigger prices for boats since you can go pretty much year round, I think I did ok on the purchase.

Boats here aren't a dick swinging contest like in some states, anything that floats and gets you on the intercoastal is good enough
 
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