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thesasquatch

Quality Control Issues? Opinions (Level-headed please)

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I wanted to get some opinions and possibly experience of others concerning my past year with an Ri257 (purchased June 2017 new from dealer).
In general, I've really liked the layout and design of the boat. It wasn't hard to see, after only a short time, that the fit & finish wasn't quite up there with a couple other 'top brands'. However, in general, like the look, layout, driveability, wave, and other obvious traits of the Ri257.

That said, this has been my experience. I'll just list the issues I've had here and keep it short and not offer my opinion at this point. It would really be great to hear what others on here would think and do at this point and what your experiences have been with YOUR Ri 237/257.. 

- Stereo - System not properly designed to handle the speaker output (too many speakers / ohm load issues). System would cut out until dealer paid for stereo shop to redesign amp connections
- Pully wheel failure on serpentine belt-- belt came off while on the water. (Eventually heard it was a "common issue with pully bearings").
- Wouldn't start intermittently-- this eventually caused us to be stranded on the lake a far distance from marina. After months of troubleshooting (and me as the trial & error), found that main umbilical not crimped properly causing "arc'ing" and inability to start engine. [This one caused nearly an entire summer with low-confidence to go on the water and $ spent for nothing]
- Sensor beeping constantly for (5+) boating sessions; dealer unable to figure it out-- even after replacing the sensor itself...
                -- Turned out to be exhaust temperature sensor alerting us for a reason! Exhaust manifold missing bolts from the factory. One year later, exhaust manifold came apart enough to burn
                    through the manifold gasket and shutting the engine down (stranded on the lake again).
And...The Last / Current Situation (August 2018)...
- After spending another couple grand on AirBnB, fuel, food, and time off of work, after a few hours on the lake after repairing exhaust manifold gasket, started smelling strong fuel smell which 
                   only got stronger until it was obvious the entire bilge was filled with fuel. 
                   Long story short, fuel tank brackets had NO bolts in them from the factory(?) so the fuel tank (all 92 gallons of weight) slid back-- eventually making contact with the top of the drive 
                    shaft which drilled a hole through the tank = fuel pouring into the bottom of the boat. We made it back to the dock with the boat sputtering (most likely due to loss of fuel line pressure).
                     We didn't realize how lucky we were. I'm sure the chances would be slim, but we were traveling on a bomb for 20 minutes or more to get to the dock. 
These have been the main issues (of course, coupled with several quality issues such as screws sticking-out, wires not properly tucked and in their proper channels along the trim, etc.

The question I'm asking is, does anyone have an opinion on whether this would taint or skew your opinion and confidence in another Centurion boat? Has anyone else had these quality issues or is this just a "Friday Afternoon Build"?

(I'll leave the result of my situation with the dealer out of this discussion for now in order to create an open response from others. Although, I will say that I feel I have been extremely patient, kind, and understanding throughout the entire adventure -- which I'm not sure I should have?)
 

Thanks in advance for any (respectful / pragmatic) responses..

 

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Kevin Baugh    73

I have had several Centurions my Current one is 2012 Enzo SV 211

This summer I had my first problem. My trim tab actuator went bad & one of my quick fill gate stopped working.

I replaced the actuator  my self and got the gate working with the manual key and some lube.( not sure if it will keep working or will need to be replaced)

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InfinitySurf    266

IMO, this is a good way to post something like this, calmly and without potentially burning bridges with a bunch of ranting.

All brands have issues like this occasionally and since I frequent the forums and keep up on things, from what I have seen Centurion is certainly not the worst BUT there are always things like this that can happen with hand built boat since you have the human error factor. Seems like you are one of the unlucky ones that got a few things that should not have happened. I wont put names out there, but 1 of the "top brands" who sells the most boats, seems to have stuff come up pretty frequently.

I will say that in my experience, Fineline has been very easy to work with on all warranty issues and always stepped up to the plate. I am sure you are talking to them about your options and hope they handle it properly.

As far as your question...there is no doubt that stuff like that would cause doubt for anyone. Seems you got the 1 out of 1000 boat. The chances of it happening on next boat are pretty slim, but it CAN happen and can happen no matter what brand you choose. I have had great experiences with mine, hard to say what I would feel if I had been thru what you had, I would like to think that I would be open to another Centurion since its not something that happens often (as far as I know) and this is a "one off". Hopefully they will be taking these issues into consideration when making a deal on a new boat and making you a deal that takes all things into account. Good luck with a resolution

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Gdmatson    26

To answer your question, if I had gone through what you’ve gone through, it would be exceptionally difficult for me to stay with the same brand. I actually switched to Centurion due to a similar nightmare with another brand. That said, there’s no comparing the quality of our Ri237 and our previous boat. I cannot express how pleased we are with the boat as a whole! Very sorry to hear your issues and hope you can move on to enjoy a beautiful boat. I think Infinity is spot on with his 1 in a 1000 perspective.

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Cdifranco    457

I love the Centurion brand but have had much different experiences when dealing with Fineline for service warrantee etc.  For me its been a nightmare to get simple phone calls back on things replaced like quickfill valves.  Big thing to me is a good marina which I do not have.  Now that they no longer carry the brand Fineline wont even talk to me. But luckily the issues I have had over the years have been minor and nowhere near your issues.  So overall for me, I would buy another Centurion in a heart beat as I love the boats but I would only do so with a marina that is going to support me and help me out. We have 4 months of boat season here, there is no time to waste really.

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wheels    149

2017 Ri237,  zero issues to speak off. Like others said all brands have their issues and it seems like every once and a while someone gets a problematic one. Biggest thing is having a great dealer or being able to do repairs and troubleshooting on your own. I will say the The quality control from the factory was way ahead of my last manufacture. Frustrating for sure but don’t let it keep you away from a boat you may love otherwise. 

Did you have  your boat in to the dealer for its first service? They should have done an inspection and retorque and I’m surprised they wouldn’t have found the missing manifold bolts. 

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Hey I really appreciate the responses so far.  I'm actually surprised by the thoughts and experiences shared and your opinions on what to do from here. As I said in the initial post, I'm not ignorant to the fact that ANY brand could have the same thing occur. After the first 3+ issues, we still felt that it was just a fluke. It's just these last few major issues that were so unbelievable that it got us to the point where we're feeling there had to have been some real neglect at with the QC at the factory in order for SO many bolts and pieces to not have been fastened properly and other installation failures (main power wires not crimped fully causing the boat to not start intermittently).

To answer your question @Wheels, we definitely had our first servicing... ironically, it was performed when we brought the boat in for the pulley failure and I believe they were preoccupied with the issue at hand and failed to fully service and go through the tightening / true-ing up process fully. There's really no other explanation. Also, I have to disclose that we went several hours past / over our initial service because we'd had so many problems right out of the gate and had had the boat in to the dealer 3-4 times in the first month that we just assumed they would have looked at the hours and warned us that it was also time for our service.. But, when we were in for yet another issue, and far past the initial service recommendation, they called me and said "did you realize you were way past your first service?". This was just another frustration for me as I've been through so much just in the first few months that there was NO way in my mind that they would've let it go past that.

To address the comments about the quality of the finish work and QC from some of you, I have to say that there were several fit & finish elements such as compartments / glove box / hinges etc that didn't either close fully or properly or screws that weren't screwed in straight and were sticking out of the floor, etc. I chose to look past these issues because of the overall design, build, and functionality of the Ri. But now I'm having a hard time not looking at that as a red flag and sign of what came later. Again, I'm definitely open to another Centurion and hopefully the powers at be are going to step-up and do the right thing as I'm not asking for the impossible.

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carguy79ta    67

2017 RI 257...... 74 hours

We had the tensioner pulley BRACKET break, not the tensioner pulley itself. You could see a crack in the bracket.

We are working thru the amps overheating from low volume use on a relatively cool day..80deg.

We had a screw back out of the inspection hatch for the trans.

Just now we have a bad temp sensor 

Overall very happy with the boat.

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Texifornian    0

Best wave, worst dealer network.  Boats have problems and centurion has slightly more than the average 6 figure boat in my opinion, so they need a little better dealer network if they want to demand the big bucks.  Great waves that people talk about compared to getting to surf behind a boat that weekend (because it works) are a world of difference.  I never want my boat down, and especially for weeks or months.  Lemon law in Texas includes boat being in shop for over 30 days in a 24 month period.  Mine is certainly in that category and it sucks cuz I can make magical waves for any surfer......when it works.

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@Carguy79ta-

Your response is quite alarming because.. well I had no idea these issues were 'common'. I don't believe it's coincidence that we both have nearly all the same issues.

When we first got our boat, we had it in 4 times for the amps overheating and shutting the stereo down. We finally took it to the best car stereo shop in Salt Lake and they put JL amps in that could handle higher ohm loads. They laughed at the design of the Roswell system-- they said those amps were WAY too underrated for the # of speakers it had, weren't a good amp for dissipating heat, and were mounted vertically in the worst possible compartment for heat trapping. A year later, we finally got word that Roswell redesigned the stereo system and admitted that the system wasn't design properly for the load.

As for the heat sensor, PLEASE have the dealer inspect the exhaust manifold and ALL engine bolts! I know of two others (aside from myself) who had the exhaust bolts loose or all the way out. This is what causes the majority of those annoying sensor beeps. The sensors usually ARE NOT bad! They're telling you something. Our dealer ignored ours and kept replacing sensors until the exhaust manifold split apart and the engine burned the gasket to a crisp (and nearly us).

I do agree with you, Texifornian, that the quality Centurion (in MY experience) isn't up to par with the price bracket. However, it's tough because the design of the boat is actually my favorite [now]. I liked two friends boats better at first (Nautique and Malibu 23LSV) but, after a year, I actually think ours is just a better layout and functionality overall. So.. pray for QC improvements at the factory. :)

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wheels    149
13 minutes ago, thesasquatch said:

@Carguy79ta-

Your response is quite alarming because.. well I had no idea these issues were 'common'. I don't believe it's coincidence that we both have nearly all the same issues.

When we first got our boat, we had it in 4 times for the amps overheating and shutting the stereo down. We finally took it to the best car stereo shop in Salt Lake and they put JL amps in that could handle higher ohm loads. They laughed at the design of the Roswell system-- they said those amps were WAY too underrated for the # of speakers it had, weren't a good amp for dissipating heat, and were mounted vertically in the worst possible compartment for heat trapping. A year later, we finally got word that Roswell redesigned the stereo system and admitted that the system wasn't design properly for the load.

As for the heat sensor, PLEASE have the dealer inspect the exhaust manifold and ALL engine bolts! I know of two others (aside from myself) who had the exhaust bolts loose or all the way out. This is what causes the majority of those annoying sensor beeps. The sensors usually ARE NOT bad! They're telling you something. Our dealer ignored ours and kept replacing sensors until the exhaust manifold split apart and the engine burned the gasket to a crisp (and nearly us).

I do agree with you, Texifornian, that the quality Centurion (in MY experience) isn't up to par with the price bracket. However, it's tough because the design of the boat is actually my favorite [now]. I liked two friends boats better at first (Nautique and Malibu 23LSV) but, after a year, I actually think ours is just a better layout and functionality overall. So.. pray for QC improvements at the factory. :)

My last 2 boats were Malibu 23 lsv’s and the quality control went nothing but down hill. My experience with centurion has been 100% better. I truly believe that centurion will only get even better as years go on as a lot of the manufactures are going the other way to have a better bottom line. 

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carguy79ta    67

@thesasquatch thanks for the heads up.  I will point this out to my dealer about the exhaust bolts. They are 200 miles away at LOTO. And the amps. Thanks!

The wave with 6150 lbs of ballast plus 1000 lbs of lead is jaw dropping. I love the boat.

As far as price goes, I think they can be had for 30k less than an M235.

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Hello Gents (and Ladies)..

I wanted to post an update to the thread to let everyone know the result of the culmination of events that happened with the Ri257.

We met with our dealer this past week after they asked for our patience for a week to discuss our boat situation with the Centurion factory. They let us know that the factory basically shut down for the better part of a day to discuss the QC issues with our boat which, of course, peaked with the fuel tank sliding back into the shaft (no bolts remained in the tank brackets) causing fuel to pour into the bilge (luckily NO fireworks took place).

The factory and dealer assessed our experience since delivery last spring (2017) and granted us the privilege of ordering a comparable 2019 Ri257 and shipped a factory demo boat to the dealer for us to use for the remainder of this season. We were grateful for their willingness and the position they took on customer satisfaction. I suppose there are a couple of ways to look at the situation as we've definitely had some varying opinions on the way my situation should have been handled. Overall, I'm pleased with their willingness and offering to replace the boat. As I understand it, this is not something that is very common in the industry (as with a car).  I can't speak to the reasons or severity with which the situation was weighted (Customer Service or Liability Concern) but I can say, overall, they're making it right and making sure we're happy with the product and hoping to make our boating experience better from here on out.

As for new options spec'd (ordered), we decided to go with the new "Dropzone" tower. Otherwise, we chose the same fairly loaded spec as before- (higher end Roswell), gatorstep, all lighting, swimdeck ladder (new add). We did NOT opt for the new cover style that allows for the tower to be lowered and then covered for travel as we won't be needing to lower the tower for storage.

As for the color, I'll post some pics of the new build when it arrives November ish to keep some follow-up suspense.

That said, I wanted to thank everyone for the supportive / respectful opinions in all directions.  Forums are great in helping to get a collective mind and voice on our common hobbies and it's been cool to see what everyone else likes and thinks of these boats.

As for the dealer, given the situation, we definitely had times of frustration-- feeling a lack of true care or desire to help the customer. In the end, I understand their position and their need to be careful throughout the entire experience. I can say that they've always been extremely quick to repair any and every issue and to explain what happened and what was done to repair. They're a great dealer and I want to give kudos to them for making us feel comfortable and justified in our frustration and in helping make the re-order process pleasant and empathetic.

-J

Edited by thesasquatch
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Texifornian    0

Just an update on my ri217.  Another lost summer.  Boat is still in shop with a catastrophic leak thru the hull.  The nautique dealership couldn’t fix it.  I took it 200 miles away to next closest centurion dealer in Austin to get fixed 3 weeks ago.  Still no boat.  Hope other boat owners are out enjoying Labor Day....It just blows.  Buyer beware.  Bad service isn’t a problem until it’s a problem!

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h20king    794

Crazy  I'm going on my 7th boat from fineline and all have been solid with no problems that have kept me off the water.

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DrNate    426

Wow, I can't believe Fineline gave you a new boat Sasquatch!  That's amazing to me.  Hard to complain when that is the case after the fact.  I'm just glad that Fineline made it right for you. Seems like having a good dealer close by on these new boats is really key

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h20king    794

Nate I'm not sure that is the case. My fi has been flawless. The new centurion boats are not for beginners. They have way to many adjustments and things going on for a first time inboard owner. Cant tell you how many guys I have helped set up there boat because they were clueless but had the money for the top of the line surf machine.  I say it all the time. Just because you can afford the boat does not mean you should have one.Not saying that is the case with the OP but more often than not that is what is going on. 

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Hey H20-  Just to clarify..you're not referring to the 8+ issues with my Ri being related to "a boat beginner"? To be discrete but make sure to be clear, been in this arena my entire life and, ironically, have 5 close friends with varying brands (a couple new malibus, a couple new Nautiques, a couple new Tige's, etc). While most have had varying small issues and adjustments, none have had even near what I've been through. There's a point at which you have to point at quality. Another interesting thing to note-- this past year I came across (2) acquaintenances who'd both ordered the same Ri257 out of the gate when they were released when I did. One of the two has had more than half of the same issues I experienced (minus the two major crippling issues). The other has only had his boat out a handful of times and had the stereo issues but nothing else.

I guess it's just important to me that everyone is able to agree on the fact that all boats are going to have varying small failures and issues so that we're able to discuss the very reason for this thread / post. Everyone involved or who has witnessed our situation has been quite surprised and it has been quite the adventure. However, there have been several signs across multiple new Centurions since last year that I've been witness to and am aware of that they have some QC issues. To be vague with info I've become privy to (given my situation) but to make the point, even the factory has admitted to a few issues that I'm not certain are things that would happen with other brands in the arena.

..just wanted to make sure nothing was misconstrued or that anything we're discussing could be taken for a 'rookie mistake' in this thread.

That said, it's hard to look elsewhere for a boat at this point, both, because I'm being given new life (with hopes of a better outcome) and because I've become so spoiled with the overall layout and functionality of the Ri--

Edited by thesasquatch

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carguy79ta    67

I disagree with H20. This isnt my first inboard, (my 2nd)but all new  boats take some getting used to,  to dial in the wave, learn how she handles etc. I am sure my 257 would have been fine for my first inboard.

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wheels    149
13 minutes ago, carguy79ta said:

I disagree with H20. This isnt my first inboard, (my 2nd)but all new  boats take some getting used to,  to dial in the wave, learn how she handles etc. I am sure my 257 would have been fine for my first inboard.

Take out all the advice you’ve got or read on forums and see how well you set up a ri or fi if it’s your first inboard. I have to agree with h as I have had to take people out on their new boats after they have owned them for over a year and show them how their boat works and how to set it up for the best wave .  A lot comes down to dealers also not taking the time to take them out and show them, also seen lots of dealers who don’t even know how to set the boat up right  

 

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h20king    794

No was not referring to you being a beginner but I see it all the time. Just go through all the hydrolock threads or the I can't make my boat surf threads.  Surfing is cool I get it but centurion is one of the more complex boats and in my opinion not for a first time boat owner.  I agree all brands will have some issues but most of those issues will be caught by a good dealer when they do the pre delivery inspection so in my eyes centurion and the dealer have to share the blame. Another thing to consider is the only thing a boat builder actually builds is the hull everything else is supplied by vendors and installed by fineline. I'm bot downplaying your issues I just truly believe fineline has less than other builders. I am getting ready to place my order for my fifth new boat from fineline my 4th since 2014 and like I said above none have had any problems that have kept me off the water. 

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carguy79ta    67
11 hours ago, wheels said:

Take out all the advice you’ve got or read on forums and see how well you set up a ri or fi if it’s your first inboard. I have to agree with h as I have had to take people out on their new boats after they have owned them for over a year and show them how their boat works and how to set it up for the best wave .  A lot comes down to dealers also not taking the time to take them out and show them, also seen lots of dealers who don’t even know how to set the boat up right  

 

The only thing I can say is with the internet, you can figure stuff out. I had no help learning how to wakeboard, then how to surf. I have been the driving force in my family and circle of people to figure this out, using the resources available. YouTube, forums, etc. If you want to do something bad enough, you figure it out some way, some how.

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h20king    794
2 hours ago, carguy79ta said:

The only thing I can say is with the internet, you can figure stuff out. I had no help learning how to wakeboard, then how to surf. I have been the driving force in my family and circle of people to figure this out, using the resources available. YouTube, forums, etc. If you want to do something bad enough, you figure it out some way, some how.

Some can not all

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Texifornian    0

I find it funny that anyone could blame user for fiberglass hull leaks around fittings.  Requiring fiberglass, gel coat and seals repaired.  Guess it being my fifth onboard I fall in that category.  Love the wave....hate that the boat doesn’t hold water.  Counted today and boat has been in shop 7 out of 17 months.

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h20king    794
1 hour ago, Texifornian said:

I find it funny that anyone could blame user for fiberglass hull leaks around fittings.  Requiring fiberglass, gel coat and seals repaired.  Guess it being my fifth onboard I fall in that category.  Love the wave....hate that the boat doesn’t hold water.  Counted today and boat has been in shop 7 out of 17 months.

You my friend are a troll with obvious dealer issues. Let us know what you buy next so we can tune in for your rants. All brands have some issues 

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