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Speedometer pitot broken... worth replacing

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  • Speedometer pitot broken... worth replacing

    Hi everyone

    i bought a used Baja and have been fixing it up project by project. It never had a working speedo when I bought it, but that seems normal for boats it’s age. I just dug into the issue as I would like to know my speed for longer cruises and estimating fuel consumption. When I looked at the outdrive I noticed that the pitot tube is snapped in half, it runs through the drive, not a separate white plastic unit. My question is, to repair the broken unit to work as it once did, is it worth it? Or do I just drop in a new gps speedo, I have faria gauges so it would match decent enough till I upgrade the rest of the gauges.


  • #2
    Fuel consumption is best measured as gallons per mile. Speed does come into it, but only as a measure of hull efficiency.

    So, you could measure fuel mileage at a particular speed, but you still need distance traveled. Only a GPS gives both speed and distance.

    I would replace the pitot, if it is easy, and can give a reliable (but not accurate) reading.


    • #3
      for under $20 you can repair what you have..... (new pitot pickup, tube, etc.)

      or for about $100 you can buy a new GPS unit.....

      unless you have a fuel flow meter, there is no way to "estimate" fuel consumption. it varies by temperature, humidity, wind, current, load, wave height, tab location, drive angle, prop quality and most importantly........commanded throttle position.

      your boat will burn between 0.5 and 2 gallons per mile depending on the items mentioned above

      use the 1/3 rule....

      go boating, use 1/3 the fuel, turn around use another 1/3 to get back. the last 1/3 is reserve in the event you have an issue along the way.
      Cheesehead boating the Gulf Coast of FLA 27.51° N, 82.53° W

      1988 Cruisers Rogue 2420 -VP 290 DP now powered by custom 468 - https://forums.iboats.com/forum/owner...988-rogue-2420

      Past Boats
      1970 Wooster Hellion - Merc 9.8
      2002 SeaRay 190BR - 5.0 - A1G2 - "Cheeseheads in Paradise"
      1984 Avanti 170DLI -3.0 stringer- "Ship Happens"

      What’s behind you doesn’t matter.Enzo Ferrari


      • #4
        If speed accuracy is important to you, just get a GPS unit. (I have a fishfinder/plotter that has GPS speedo built in, and that works great.) For a couple of years, my pitot-based speedometer didn't work, and it drove me nuts. I eventually fixed, just because I don't like leaving things unrepaired on the boat. For most purposes, I look at the GPS speed, though, especially when pulling skiers or kids on the tube.
        Location: West Central Illinois, USA 1997 Larson 186 SEi Bowrider I/O Mercruiser 350 #0F747565 Mag Alpha One Gen II #1A270120 Transom and Deck Restoration Project on my '97 Larson Bowrider


        • #5
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          If the pitot tube is easy to replace on the drive, then replace it. But you can also buy a pitot tube that mounts on the lower transom and hook it up. Either way, they bother are mere suggestions at best. But it makes for good conversation and helps if you actually sell the boat later on...
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