Author Topic: Almarine Meteor from the UK  (Read 6386 times)

Offline pistn broke

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Almarine Meteor from the UK
« on: May 12, 2009, 10:07:47 AM »
Hi, i'm Dom, i've been checking out this cool website for years now so figured it's about time to post up about my jet boat and ask a few questions.

The hull is a fibreglass 10.5ft Almarine Meteor, built in the 70's in Norfolk, England. It's powered by a 635cc 2 stroke Rotax onto a UA jet unit, the engine makes about 45hp. Seems to be a very rare boat, so far i've only ever seen one other like it.
Have owned the thing for years now and learnt a lot along the way, mainly the hard way  :-\ The boat was riddled with problems which i've almost all fixed but it has taken years due to the boat being stored a fair distance from where i live but have enjoyed working on it as and when. Am hoping to get the thing on the water this summer. Some of the jobs done:

- swapped knackered bodged points ignition for MSD digital
- new flywheel CNC'd
- UA pump welded up and new wear rings fitted
- rebuilt engine with new pistons
- starter motor overhauled
- bent impeller shaft straightened
- BING carb overhauled with new jets, needle etc

Has anyone had or seen one of these boats. Would be great to get more info. I read an old thread from a guy called Kermit on here who seemed to know of the Rotax/UA combo.

Cheers

Dom







« Last Edit: June 03, 2009, 06:51:23 AM by pistn broke »

Offline Matthewf/Norbert/TuiDog

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2009, 10:19:45 AM »
looks awesome b> b> great project

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Offline xplorn

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2009, 21:02:36 PM »
cool project bet its alot of fun *-) b>
"to be old and wise, first one must be young and stupid"

Offline pistn broke

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #3 on: May 13, 2009, 07:42:52 AM »
Cheers. Not many jet boats over here in the UK. At least i've got the rivers to myself  b>
Read a post on here that the UA jet units can only take 40hp  O)))) This would probably explain why the shaft was bent when i got it. The post said if you sleeve the shaft it will sort the problem, does this mean shrinking a steel tube onto the existing shaft?

Once its on the water next job is to switch the steering wheel onto the left side of the cockpit and fit a pedal accelerator. Its currently right hand drive and has a hand throttle  C""

Offline Nigel

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #4 on: May 13, 2009, 09:47:30 AM »
great looking boat... whats the size and specs of the hull???
Jetboatless at the moment but not boatless

Offline pistn broke

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2009, 01:06:53 AM »
Dunno about the hull specs. Will take some measurements next time i'm working on it. The jet pump is a bit wierd in that the intake is fibreglass and part of the hull. It also doesn't have an intake grate.
The company that made it also made an outboard engine version called the Seafire which sold quite well. There seem to be lots in Holland but most have small outboards about 25hp but still quick.

Offline pistn broke

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2009, 06:59:12 AM »
Got some more work done on the "soap dish" last week.
Fitted new trigger pickups, flywheel, wired up ignition and connected up all the cables etc, hit the start button and it started first time! Going to fit a ball valve to the cooling water inlet pipe so i have a bit of control over the flow rate of water into the engine from the jet unit (it is an open loop system with no thermostat or anything like that). With a bit of trial and error i should be able to get a fairly stable water temp in the engine.


trigger plate assembly and pickups (adjustable timing by rotating plate through holes in flywheel)


the rotax 637 with new flywheel heated on


engine in place and wired up (very satisfying job!)

<a href="http://i179.photobucket.com/player.swf?file=http://vid179.photobucket.com/albums/w288/domsphotobucket/Video-0001.flv" target="_blank">http://i179.photobucket.com/player.swf?file=http://vid179.photobucket.com/albums/w288/domsphotobucket/Video-0001.flv</a>
Lift off! Was running way too much water through hose though and water temps were way too low. Hope no damage done!



Offline pistn broke

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #7 on: October 28, 2009, 22:18:04 PM »
It lives!  OoOoO

Seems the jet unit is in need of either major overhaul or replacement though. Would not accelerate without slipping so had to accelerate really slowly to get up on the plane. Also no major increase in speed between 2/3 and full throttle. Maybe made 20-25kts. I think when i had the wear rings made up i underestimated how important minimising the tip clearance is. Wondering now how hard it would be to fit a jet unit from a Yamaha waverunner 3 or similar power ski as the shaft is also a bit bent on the UA unit and i broke the rear impeller off the shaft  C""

Anyway, some pics. Vids to follow:














Offline alastair_vns

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #8 on: October 29, 2009, 07:14:02 AM »
Hi nice boat. Me and my bro have the aqua jet version. They were originaly designed for inshore racing in dubai. Just watch out for big waves  OoOoO My bro has vid of his boat http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X_iFuV0Xj0w your top speed should be around 40-50mph. Always remind passengers they may need a nappie lol. I also thought about jet ski units but too expensive for the right one.

Offline pistn broke

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #9 on: October 30, 2009, 01:29:43 AM »
Hi and cheers 8) Great to see another one. I see form the vid that you were testing the boat at Loch Lomond, do you live there? Would love to take my boat up there.

You boat seems to go like stink compared to mine, maybe twice the speed!  C"" Yet i read your other post and you said you didn't think the performance of the jet was much good, seems pretty good to me! What engine did it have originally, and what hp have you replaced it with? I've seen a used Yamaha Waverunner 3 jet unit on ebay for £70, which is suited to a 50hp so wondering how hard it would be to convert from the UA jet. I guess i'd be looking at custom shaft and transom mounting adaptor plate as dont want to hack the hull up.

Does the aqua jet version have an intake grate? And is the inlet duct part of the fibreglass hull or a separate casting part of the jet unit? Sorry for all the questions. Many more though  l-l

Cheers  b>


Offline alastair_vns

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #10 on: October 30, 2009, 06:26:16 AM »
Hi we just go to loch lomond at weekends not best place for our type of boat but good fun. The vid is of my bros boat his is an original spec with 3 cylinder piaggio engine, Mine was made by another company it used to have a 55hp engine, it now has a peugeot 1.4, it should be faster again if i can do anything to the jet. Yes aquajets have an intake grate and the inlet is part of the hull. If you are definetly changing your jet unit I would look for something with a very similar size to the ua unit.
keep us upto date.
Alastair

Offline pistn broke

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #11 on: October 30, 2009, 12:30:30 PM »
Nice one. So is the Piaggio engine 55hp? I like the idea of the Peugeot engine though. Have always wanted a jet boat with a 13b turbo rotary engine  *-) pig
Would really appreciate some pics of your boat, intake, engine bay etc if you have time to put some up on the web.
BTW am on the CMBA forum (Classic Motor Boat Association UK). There are a couple of people on there with similar boats.
Cheers
Dom

Offline alastair_vns

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #12 on: October 31, 2009, 23:09:08 PM »
Hi I use the CMBA site too. Have you used oldspeedboats, my younger bro has some pics of his on that. I`ll try and put some pics on next week. The piaggio engine is just over 65 hp and very light. so as you can imagine has plenty of power.
cheers

Offline pistn broke

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #13 on: November 03, 2009, 11:27:06 AM »
Took a look at your bros boat pics. V nice. The setup is quite different though.

Heres a vid of my boat during its first test.

<a href="http://i179.photobucket.com/player.swf?file=http://vid179.photobucket.com/albums/w288/domsphotobucket/SoapDishEditedFootage_0001.flv" target="_blank">http://i179.photobucket.com/player.swf?file=http://vid179.photobucket.com/albums/w288/domsphotobucket/SoapDishEditedFootage_0001.flv</a>

My jet is approx 147mm diameter and the early yamaha's (super jet, waverunners etc) use 144mm units and are 650cc, 50hp so keeping an eye out. Also loads of spares and upgrades if you decide to uprate the engine.

Is your jet single stage or twin stage pump?

Offline alastair_vns

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Re: Almarine Meteor from the UK
« Reply #14 on: November 04, 2009, 06:33:12 AM »
Your boat goes well, are u going to uprate the engine Ive heard they engines can make alot of power.
mine and bros are singlestage, mainly due to the size of the jet unit.
Iv got the engine out of the boat to do the head gasket just now, so hopefully once it is fixed I might get some videos upped.