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Old 24 August 2008, 11:05   #1
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Optimax starting problems - an ideas ?

Hi - looking for any advice on my 2003 , 200 optimax. Went to start it yesterday and lots of turning over but no firing at all - went on for 2 hours ! changed the battery to the spare which I keep fully charged & still nothing . Then after calling sea start & missing the race boats in the solent I tried it again & went no problem on 1st turn ! Sea start think it may be faulty /intermittent relay that starts up the whole spark/ ignition module. Anyone had anything like this on thiers ? ( I have checked all the std stuff , like kill switch , primer buld etc ) .

It then ran faultlessly ( as usual ) for 3 hours including starting 2 or 3 times when I stopped for petrol etc .
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Old 24 August 2008, 14:28   #2
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opti probs

How many hours have you done on the engine? Have your spark plugs been replaced at 100hrs?

Do you have a good connection on the battery? Optis are fussy about having the right amount of cranking amps to get them started.

As with most modern engines you need a diagnostic computer to check.


Have you had any recent warnings on the smart craft gauge's ?
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Old 24 August 2008, 16:12   #3
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Trouble is, it's running now so as Iain says you'd need it plugged in to diagnostics to check.

If it does it again check it's sparking with a spare plug?
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Old 24 August 2008, 16:36   #4
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The kill switch sounds like a prime suspect to me, did you move it a lot before the engine started? is it mounted where water could get to it, or a cover that leaks onto it perhaps ?
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Old 24 August 2008, 17:21   #5
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Thanks for ideas - kill switch was no way wet & I put a brand new fully charged battery on it & still nothing - I did make sure the kill switch was OK , but there could always be an odd wire. Not sure if plugs were changed- its done 380 ish hours & serviced at 320 , but are going to get if fully serviced to be sure at the end of the season ( if it lasts that long ! )

If it was voltage on the battery why would it go after cranking for 15 times & then go ? I would have thought the battery would only ever get worse ?

Oh and nothing by way of warnings - no low voltage etc - all seemed fine.

Started today OK 1st time !
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Old 25 August 2008, 05:08   #6
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If your connection to the battery is not tight and well greased it might not start. Happened to me, cleaned the terminals and put grease on it never happened again.
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Old 25 August 2008, 16:34   #7
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Relay

I had a similar problem a couple of years ago which was traced back to a dodgy relay.

Engine was difficult to start a couple of times then ran ok for a while then cut out mid solent.

Relay was about £30 iirc plus a couple of hours engineers time to diagnose.

Would get it to your local friendly Optimax Doctor.
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Old 25 August 2008, 19:02   #8
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I have a starting circuit on my Evinrude that ensures there's enough juice to all the important things for starting purposes. This has relays, I'm sure the Opti will have something like this on.

Sorry can't be much more help other than mention the obvious items like others are suggesting.
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Old 26 August 2008, 04:18   #9
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Starting/ ignition relay is being changed this week - hopefully it will solve the problem. Engineer is 90 % convinced it will - thanks for replies- I dont know why its re-assuring to know someone else has had the same issue.....and fixed it.

I know optis are fussy about voltage / amps so I am fussy about making sure I start & run the engine at least every 3-4 days for an hour even if its just up & down the river. I went to take my smaller boat out last night & guess what - it wouldn't start but just the battery had gone flat - at least I can manually start that one.
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Old 26 August 2008, 14:28   #10
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If you get stuck with relays, just take one of the trim relays out and plug it into your start relay, they are the same relay. Bit late for that now of course!!
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Old 27 August 2008, 04:53   #11
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Thanks all - I was told about the relay for the trim being the same as the ignition one , but without trim I would end up leaving a very expensive prop in several pieces on the way out of Christchurch harbour , and probably ending up bending the prop shaft aswell.

I will play safe, get it changed & hope it fixs the problem. At least I know if it happens somewhere 'deep' I can get very close to home. Where are the relays located in the engine ? I'v ehad the cover off several times , but on a new complex motor all I generally manage to identify are the plugs/ air intake & starter !
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Old 03 September 2008, 16:18   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackroady View Post
Thanks all - I was told about the relay for the trim being the same as the ignition one , but without trim I would end up leaving a very expensive prop in several pieces on the way out of Christchurch harbour , and probably ending up bending the prop shaft aswell.

I will play safe, get it changed & hope it fixs the problem. At least I know if it happens somewhere 'deep' I can get very close to home. Where are the relays located in the engine ? I'v ehad the cover off several times , but on a new complex motor all I generally manage to identify are the plugs/ air intake & starter !
Three relays in a line, on the port side of the engine, (i think!!) low down, should be fairly easy to spot
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Old 27 September 2008, 08:40   #13
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Same again this morning !- I'm starting to wonder if it just doesnt like cold air , or I'm somehow flooding it , or not choking it etc . The key says push to choke , but usually I have no need to . On these motors does it actually do anything ? I'd guess wwith injectin there should be no need !

So back to Sq 1 - am charging batteries as we seak as I ran them down abit trying to get it going. It only seesm to happen if its not been run for a week or two , so I'm guess ing its this . New starting battery going in & old one will run bilge pump !

Good job I've stiil got the smaller boat - still went for a quick blast in that & for breakfast @ tukton !

Its a great day out there !
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