View Full Version : '87 Checkmate Exciter w/'87 200 Merc

Checkmate Mike
04-24-2001, 11:23 PM
- '87 18.5' Checkmate Exciter
- '87 200hp Merc Black Max (stock)
- 25" Laser II prop
- CMC Hydraulic Jackplate

Currently running 65mph (speedo) at just under 6000rpm.

Investigating other props as well as a nose cone or Mercury gearcase with lower water pickups.

Any advice from folks with similar setups is always welcome.


04-25-2001, 07:23 PM
runnin a 21' starflite w/pretty much the same mods as you in addition i'm runnin cut heads(34cc's),g force tuner,l&s LWP cone,12" setback,bobs solid mount's<(a must have),boyesen's,stacks,26" mazco,torque tab,and probably more i can't think of right now.from what i understand the exciter get's to be a handful at much over 70 mph so saftey stuff is a must.solid mount's,good steering,trim on the wheel etc.probably 6-10"total of setback will help the ride in rough water and allow better top end too.maybe a spacer on your jack plate would do it.i was looking into getting an exciter before i found my starflite but i couldn't find one.was told they didn't make a whole lot of them so take good care of it.see ya.

04-26-2001, 09:42 PM
It definitely needs solid mounts if it doesn't have them. A stock motor with rubber shock mounts will slop around and make it impossible to control chinewalk. The jackplate doesn't do much good if you can't get enough of the motor out of the water to reduce drag. You're gonna fry a motor with stock intakes jacking it up too much. Get a nosecone with low-water pickups. If you're running it up high enough, a good over-hub chopper-style prop will help. Those three basic mods/changes will get you into the 70mph range, but like check88 said, hulls like yours are a bitch to control at higher speeds, so don't kill yourself. Today, I finally got the guts to push the Hydrostream I just bought over the 72mph mark. DAMN, it feels good. I'm shooing for 80 this weekend. -Chad

04-27-2001, 07:09 AM
Mike, I have run several Mates way over 70 MPH's. Sold em in the 80's and we had one 21' w/a very stout V-6 looper OMC and another with a V-8. Both rigs had plates, cones and big ass wheels and ran low 80's! Have run them bigger and smaller and most of the bottoms are the same. The Mates are awesome boats but very heavy to really make run! (read lots O power)
You've gotta get the hull out of the water/fly it to make it run. First trick is learning to control chine walk with steering input. The old V bottom Mates owned a lot of records back in the 60's, they can run! The other guys are correct too. Install solid mounts, I'm sure you already have dual cable steering and adjusted with no slop. Put a cone on it for water pick up at elevated motor heights. Run a Chopper which has a ton of blade rake to carry the bow, Maybe more set back, also to carry the bow, jack it to the moon start with about a 1/2 tank of gas by yourself with a vest and the kill tether attached, pucker your butt and hold on! Once you get passed the chine walking wall, then test with motor height until your RPM's go up but your speed drops or stays the same. Go back down about 1/4" and you should be there! Good luck and I hope this helps, instigator

[Edited by Instigator on 04-27-2001 at 07:11 AM]

05-12-2001, 10:53 PM
hey mike,
i've got an 84 exciter w/a 2.6 gt johnson,25 shooter(tons-o-rake)hyd. jack,hyd.steering.runs 69.9 on gps straight as an arrow.mines' got a pad i guess yours does too.if she's chinewalking you need to go higher on the jack,or more rake on the prop.(trimmed all in skiing at 36 mph mine breaks the water behind the drivers seat)jacked,trimed and hammer down she's got 3-4 inches in the water,smooth as silk,that's how you need to fly them 'mates.
hope that helps

Checkmate Mike
06-11-2001, 07:45 PM
Finally got a chance to purchase and try out a 25" Tempest in place of my 25" Laser on my boat. As well, I plugged up the top 3 holes on each side of my lower unit (it has 8 on each side). I was suspicious it was sucking air. I was right!
This new setup has allowed me to run the motor higher and increase my top speed to 70mph (speedo). It feels faster than that (confirmed by others who know the boat) and I'm anxious to source a radar or GPS to find out for sure. With all holes open and my Laser up high, my water pressure would often drop to 10PSI - too low for WOT. Factory calls for 12PSI minimum. With this new setup, I can run my motor much higher and still get 20PSI of pressure. My overheating issue has disappeared, thanks to the cooling I'm getting now.
This was a "cheapo" fix but for the extra fun the boat is now, well worth the time and perhaps posting on the board for others to know about. - Mike

10-20-2007, 07:28 PM
I'm considering buying an '87 checkmate exciter with a 260hp V8 mercruiser sterndrive. Are there any known issues with this boat I should be aware of, or particular things to look for in buying one used? Thanks.

10-21-2007, 08:14 AM
I'm considering buying an '87 checkmate exciter with a 260hp V8 mercruiser sterndrive. Are there any known issues with this boat I should be aware of, or particular things to look for in buying one used? Thanks.

Can't thiink of any particular issues with the Exciter model itself. Just check the things you would check on any other boat like soft spots in the floor or cracking in the transom area or even cracks in the gelcoat along the bottem/pad area.

Like what was stated earlier. The Exciters are kind of rare. An I/O model is even more rare than an O/B model like mine.

10-21-2007, 12:51 PM