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Discussion Starter #1
My buddy and I each have Spark 2up 90hp's that were using for testing. We're also doing our testing on a lake this is pretty calm and about .75 miles in length. This spring I started doing some mods to mine and we have raced side by side after various points of modding and I thought I would share my results. First off we have identical Sparks but I'm 6'2" and 245lbs, my buddy is about 5'11" and 170lbs. Each time we raced side by side we each rode each machine twice to get an accurate idea of the difference that the mods made and to try and take rider weight out of the equation the best we could.

First mod was SS wear ring and Solas prop. This made a slight difference out of the hole but not too significant. With the heavier rider on the Spark with the mods we were about neck and neck and with the lighter rider on the Spark with the mods it jumped out to about a 2 ski length lead and held it up to top end. Didn't seem to change top speed at all but it did make the speedo read slower since it changed the rpm's at a given speed and the speedo's run of the rpm's.

Next step was adding R&D air intake, R&D free flow exhaust, R&D aqauvein intake grate, R&D pump seal kit and R&D ride plate. With these mods the Spark hooked up much better out of the hole and stayed hooked up all the way to top speed, top speed was about .5-1 mph faster than stock with either rider. With the heavier rider the modded Spark jumped out about 1 ski length out of the hole, then the stock Spark caught up in the mid-range and then the modded Spark slowly pulled ahead with the slightly higher top end. With the lighter rider on the modded Spark it jumped out to a quick 3-4 ski length lead and continued to gain a lead of about 5-6 ski lengths buy the time they hit top speed. I will note that these mods are known to make a much bigger difference in rough water. We'll be doing a day trip in the ocean within in the next week or so and will do some more testing there.

The last thing we're going to do is a V-tech tune. I know everyone says to do this mod first but we wanted to gauge the performance gains of the other cheaper mods first since not everyone can afford or wants to do the v-tech tune.

I know there is a lot of people out there with far more knowledge than I have when it comes to jet ski's or the Sparks, if anyone else wants to chime in on these mods or has any questions please feel free to ask.
 

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On my 90 HP model, with my Solas 12/17 I picked up 1-2 MPH. My ski sees 53.x MPH on GPS. I weigh 165 LBS. I actually think the from a dead stop it's slightly slower than stock, only from 0-10MPH or so. The only real difference I notice with the prop is it hooks alot better in rough water, and when getting on and off the throttle it seems to dig better.... Considering what to do next? The Spark is a blast when jumping waves, but a bit of a yawn on flat water if you're by yourself, but that pretty much goes for any ski..
 

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Thanks for this. I was very curious about the affects of different mods and am happy someone took the time to let the rest of us know. Very interested to hear how the VTEC tune goes. That should provide the biggest change.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I'm expecting pretty big gains out of the V-tech after doing all these other mods. Mostly acceleration but it should still be pretty drastic.

I haven't checked anything on GPS yet but I will next time I go out. From what I understand if you have VTS your speedo is off GPS already, if you don't have VTS your speedo is calculated off RPM's. Neither of the ski's I'm using for testing have VTS.

If you're on a budget I'd recommend removing the flame arrestor on the intake. I know it's been a pretty controversial thing to do in some other threads on here, but after seeing how restrictive it is I would recommend doing it.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
If anyone is familiar with the various V-Tech tunes and has any recomendations as to which one I should go with feel free to share your info. At this point I don't know too much about the V-tech stuff and can use all the help I can get.
 

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I'm expecting pretty big gains out of the V-tech after doing all these other mods. Mostly acceleration but it should still be pretty drastic.

I haven't checked anything on GPS yet but I will next time I go out. From what I understand if you have VTS your speedo is off GPS already, if you don't have VTS your speedo is calculated off RPM's. Neither of the ski's I'm using for testing have VTS.

If you're on a budget I'd recommend removing the flame arrestor on the intake. I know it's been a pretty controversial thing to do in some other threads on here, but after seeing how restrictive it is I would recommend doing it.
What exactly is the flame arrestor? Is it some type of speed or RPM limiter? Why is it controversial to remove it?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The flame arrestor is a round disk about an inch thick that is multiple layers of metal screen. It's purpose is to stop a backfire from traveling through the intake valves and into the engine compartment. They have beena regulated item since most marine engines were 2 strokes and electronic ignition and fuel injection wern't as common. But with todays machines it's extemely unlikely that it would ever happen. It's been a controversial mod because some people say it's not worth the risk. But pretty much every single person looking for more power has taken theirs out and I have yet to hear about anyone experiencing a backfire at all, nevermind through the intake. The mod is common reffered to as the "Ribbon Delete" if you want to research it more.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Here's a picture of one I stole off another Spark forum. The only way for air to get into the Spark's engine is through that. When you hold it up to light you can barely see light through it. I imagine it restricts air flow into the intake pretty drastically.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I did multiple mods at once so I can't say which mod caused what but here's the best break down I can do. I also don't have receipts for everything but I ordered it all on the greenhulk store and got 10% off all of my posted prices by using a coupon code (greenhulk). The biggest gains we're definitely in acceleration. There were very slight gains in top speed but if that's all your looking for save your money.

First set of mods - Felt slight increase in acceleration, top end stayed about the same
- Solas 12/17 Impeller - $230
- Solas Stainless Steel wear ring - $160

Second set of mods (I did these all at once because the top had to come off for all of them) - Felt pretty significant increase in acceleration and slight increase in top end.
- R&D power filter Kit - $200 (this was also part of the ribbon delete)
- R&D high flow exhaust - $200
- R&D aquavein intake grate - $250 (helps the spark hook up better and not jump out of the water during hole shot)
- R&D pump shoe seal kit - $70 (seals intake grate to reduce cavitation)
- R&D pro series ride plate - $220 (ride plate is slightly longer and helps keep the bow down from idle all the way to top end which helps it hook up better)

Third set of mods, I haven't done these yet but have them at the house and will be completing them soon. As soon as I do I'll post results and also will get GPS top speeds.
- V-tech, which isn't installed so I don't have any info on performance increase yet - $800
- Hydro turf orange and black mats - $115
- 2015 engine inspection hatch cover - $40
 

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I did multiple mods at once so I can't say which mod caused what but here's the best break down I can do. I also don't have receipts for everything but I ordered it all on the greenhulk store and got 10% off all of my posted prices by using a coupon code (greenhulk). The biggest gains we're definitely in acceleration. There were very slight gains in top speed but if that's all your looking for save your money.

First set of mods - Felt slight increase in acceleration, top end stayed about the same
- Solas 12/17 Impeller - $230
- Solas Stainless Steel wear ring - $160

Second set of mods (I did these all at once because the top had to come off for all of them) - Felt pretty significant increase in acceleration and slight increase in top end.
- R&D power filter Kit - $200 (this was also part of the ribbon delete)
- R&D high flow exhaust - $200
- R&D aquavein intake grate - $250 (helps the spark hook up better and not jump out of the water during hole shot)
- R&D pump shoe seal kit - $70 (seals intake grate to reduce cavitation)
- R&D pro series ride plate - $220 (ride plate is slightly longer and helps keep the bow down from idle all the way to top end which helps it hook up better)

Third set of mods, I haven't done these yet but have them at the house and will be completing them soon. As soon as I do I'll post results and also will get GPS top speeds.
- V-tech, which isn't installed so I don't have any info on performance increase yet - $800
- Hydro turf orange and black mats - $115
- 2015 engine inspection hatch cover - $40
If you plan to add any stickers, at least with those we can measure the difference they make in power. 1 sticker = 1hp :D
 

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The flame arrestor is a round disk about an inch thick that is multiple layers of metal screen. It's purpose is to stop a backfire from traveling through the intake valves and into the engine compartment. They have beena regulated item since most marine engines were 2 strokes and electronic ignition and fuel injection wern't as common. But with todays machines it's extemely unlikely that it would ever happen. It's been a controversial mod because some people say it's not worth the risk. But pretty much every single person looking for more power has taken theirs out and I have yet to hear about anyone experiencing a backfire at all, nevermind through the intake. The mod is common reffered to as the "Ribbon Delete" if you want to research it more.


yes, it is unlikely that a backfire would happen on a new unit, but it is still possible, what some people decide on what is a an acceptable risk isn't the same thing as saying "it will likely never happen", if it could never happen they would never put the flame arrester there in the first place, so what people must understand when doing modifications like that is what "could" happen, if the right conditions exist there could be an explosion and someone could get hurt or die, Sorry don't mean to sound morbid but someone doing the mods may not care about their health or lives but what about the other people around you or about someone you have lent your machine to, did they understand the risks or did you even tell them about what could happen, you could open yourself up to a huge lawsuit!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
You are 100% correct in your assessment of the risk involved in removing the flame arrestor. There is a risk there and it's up to you if it's worth it. I personally spent 4 years in the coast guard doing search and rescue and never saw or heard of one boat ever exploding, lighting on fire or having any issues at all from a backfire through the intake valve. R&D, who sells the intake kit, does include removing the flame arrestor in their installation instructions. If there was much or any risk to it I highly doubt they would tell you to do so without at least including some sort of limited liability paper work with their product. But at the end of the day it's up to each individual owner if they want to do it or not. I personally decided I wanted to see how much I could get out of an N/A spark and that's why I chose to do so. If your interested in the mod there is tons of information on it out there on all different forums and websites for every current major brand, I'm sure everyone can decide for themselves if it's something they would like to do or not.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I knew from the start that the Vtech tune is by far the most bang for the buck, especially if your starting with a 60hp. The reason I went in the order I did was because every thread I have read starts with the tune, then they go from there. I wanted to go the opposite route and see if the cheaper parts made any significant gains before adding the tune incase people without $800 were thinking of doing some of the mods available.
 

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Good entry level mod indeed.

Even going turbo can be said to be good bang for your buck, but of course that's an extreme not approached in the numbers a vtech tune is.
 

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Great thread massrider I went for the tune first because I bought two 60hp first then put the tune on right away and I love them .I can only get 50mph but getting there is a lot quicker than standard .Plus because I bought two 60hp with the money I saved I bought one tuner for both and saved even more.I want to try the E85 tune that is supposed to get another 10hp more but I cant get any around here to try. The Vtech lets you changed between the tunes for no cost .Great little tool.Looking forward to your next post.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I've read a lot on the E85 tune and the extra power you get with it would definitely make it worthwhile. My only question is, what does it do to fuel consumption? I've read that in cars running E85 lowers your MPG's a decent amount. Unfortunately I won't be able to answer that question for myself any time soon because I don't know of a single gas station that sells E85 in the Massachusetts or Rhode Island area's where I ride. I also do a lot of trips on the ocean that require fueling up at a marina along the way and I haven't seen any marina's at all the sell E85.
 

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You are 100% correct in your assessment of the risk involved in removing the flame arrestor. There is a risk there and it's up to you if it's worth it. I personally spent 4 years in the coast guard doing search and rescue and never saw or heard of one boat ever exploding, lighting on fire or having any issues at all from a backfire through the intake valve. R&D, who sells the intake kit, does include removing the flame arrestor in their installation instructions. If there was much or any risk to it I highly doubt they would tell you to do so without at least including some sort of limited liability paper work with their product. But at the end of the day it's up to each individual owner if they want to do it or not. I personally decided I wanted to see how much I could get out of an N/A spark and that's why I chose to do so. If your interested in the mod there is tons of information on it out there on all different forums and websites for every current major brand, I'm sure everyone can decide for themselves if it's something they would like to do or not.
I would agree that it is up to the individual person to decide if the risk is worth it or not, the issue is everyone reads these forms and sees the tips and tricks what everyone is doing and no one ever questions what if? once something happens that is when everyone is looking to see who is liable. I don't know for sure but I would think R&D's stuff is supposed to be installed on race units used in closed course competition. And I am pretty sure flame arrestors are a mandatory piece of equipment on a watercraft with an inboard engine, you may not have seen it happen before mainly because everyone likely had their flame arrestor in place...I have seen it happen before and it isn't something I would want to happen to myself or anyone I know. Likely the reason it happened was probably because it wasn't installed properly or had a hole in it! I am not telling anyone not to do it, but make sure you know what you are up against if it happens, If you did have it happen to your own unit with someone else on your machine or even a bystander that got hurt you as the owner could be liable if you didn't make sure those around you or the ones using the machine knew the risks involved. even then just telling them might not be enough, you probably should have them sign a waiver.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I would agree that it is up to the individual person to decide if the risk is worth it or not, the issue is everyone reads these forms and sees the tips and tricks what everyone is doing and no one ever questions what if? once something happens that is when everyone is looking to see who is liable. I don't know for sure but I would think R&D's stuff is supposed to be installed on race units used in closed course competition. And I am pretty sure flame arrestors are a mandatory piece of equipment on a watercraft with an inboard engine, you may not have seen it happen before mainly because everyone likely had their flame arrestor in place...I have seen it happen before and it isn't something I would want to happen to myself or anyone I know. Likely the reason it happened was probably because it wasn't installed properly or had a hole in it! I am not telling anyone not to do it, but make sure you know what you are up against if it happens, If you did have it happen to your own unit with someone else on your machine or even a bystander that got hurt you as the owner could be liable if you didn't make sure those around you or the ones using the machine knew the risks involved. even then just telling them might not be enough, you probably should have them sign a waiver.
I think we're getting a bit off the original topic here. All I'm doing is stating my mods, starting with the cheapest ones and working my way to the more expensive ones to let other fellow spark riders know what the results have been. I have done a fair bit of research on everything I have done so far and I'm comfortable with it. If anyone else disagrees that's fine. Just like I'm doing, do your research and start a thread to inform other fellow spark owners of your findings. I have read almost every thread on modifications and will gladly read more, especially if it was about a potential safety hazard.
 
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