T-Rex...                                             1989 Laser Ski Ray

This boat is a 1989 Laser Ski Ray, 20í, Rated for 185 HP, delivery hull weight was 980# empty. The boat was the first 1989 out of the mold. I ordered the boat in February, '88. I contacted Mr. Ron Huff several times prior to them starting the boat, trying to get it the way I wanted it. Lasers only come in 3 colors, std., basic and 2-color stripes. I settled for white for basic (wanted yellow, but was married back then and she won out!). The main stripe was gunmetal greyb4t-rex.jpg (17082 bytes) metalflake with a metalflake red stripe around grey. I traded the windshield for a black stripe around red. I ordered with no ladder or ski tow or windshield. I took delivery in July of '88. It had Mariner 150 Mag-II, and was delivered on an Oklahoma custom trailer. The Salesman I bought the boat from was a friend of mine, so he delivered the boat to the river and made the first WOT pass. 72mph with a 26" laser-II prop right out of the box. I could only muster up 65mph because I wasnít used to driving the boat. It took a lot of seat time to get used to the way the laser ran. Bow high and never set on the pad, always had to fight the wheel (steering was on the side, with 2 people it balanced out and drove great). Drove like this for about 4 Ĺ years, till my engine was stolen in 1992. While the boat was out of commission, I found that the foam under the floor was saturated with water. So I removed the entire floor, and the water soaked foam. I also found the rear seats were rotting, so I removed them. I decided to completely strip the hull and start over. After stripping the hull I weighed it to see how much the naked hull weighed. The empty hull weighed 870# (with bow light). I purchased a 1991 2.5 EFI 200 in the first part of '93. I made a bad mistake, I put the motor on the empty hull. I had moved the steering to the middle and only one Laser bucket seat. The first time out with the new HP proved to be kinda disappointing. The acceleration was really good but the top end wasnít what I thought it would be. 78mph, and was a handful as far as handling went. I ran it like this for about a year. Then a wristpin clip didnít like where it was put, and came out and tore up the sleeve. I decided while the engine was down, it was time for some added HP. I got with a good friend of mine, who runs a drag jet boat, he had some good ideas and agreed to help me go faster. He said speed without handling was a no-no! So we rolled the laser over and put the tapered pad on it. Jr. runs this type on his squirt boat. Back to the engine, we welded up the exhaust and made little headers that pointed down toward the exhaust opening. This was suppose to help flow but keep the low end torque. Cut the rod slots, and flowed the air box and manifold. Put engine back together and took new engine and new pad to the river. Broke in the engine, first pass proved the stability of the pad, boat really drove well. 82mph top end, but the acceleration was real good. Ran for 2 years, till a pin that keeps the rings from turning came out and scored the sleeve. Happened on the water hose at an idle! Tore down motor and replaced the sleeve. Thatís when I ran into my Late friend Wally Joffrion, he talked me into doing some dragracing with DSRA. I raised the ports on the motor, cut and balanced the pistons, balanced the rods and pins. Cut out all the little headers from the exhaust and cut to 300drag specs., took .250 of heads (for fuel, 200#ís comp) bought light flywheel. Me and Wally went to Jack Millers Landing to set my boat up for ľ mile. First pass showed me a 83mph in 15 seconds, with a 26" Yamaha wheel. We moved the engine up and down, different props, balance, by the daystransom1.jpg (22312 bytes) end I was running high 14ís and 85mph. That night I added 6" set back and raised the motor 3" and rebalanced the boat. The next day the first pass showed me low 14ís and around 85mph. We took off to Pineville, La. To do some racing. Rumor had it they were going to start a bass/ski boat class. We got there and the rumors were true, but you had to weigh 1950#. I could only get to 1720# so I ran 1400 modified. Got down to 1650# was as low as I could get. Made 5 trex99a.jpg (41737 bytes)passes though (got a by run, think they felt sorry for me). That bass/ski boat class turned into the Lakeracer Class in DSRA. I had to put the interior back in the boat and had to weigh 1800#. I put the floor and 2 Allison seats all floatation back in the boat. Boat now weighed 1810# with driver and no fuel. Raced the boat in lake racer class in '97 and '98. At the end of the '98 season I was running low 13ís @ 90mph with 20" Yamaha @ 9600rpmís. Was at WestLake, La. and the announcer (David Berry, I think) made a statement about the laser becoming extinct like the dinosaurs, thus the name T-REX came about. In the winter of '98 I painted the boat Hemi Orange and made several additions to the aerodynamics of this barge (every little bit helps). I came up with the modifications to the merc1.jpg (24717 bytes)efi airbox and called it the 10pack. The fastest the ole laser ever went (beforemerc2.jpg (108908 bytes) 10pack) was 98.7mph with a 30" mercury cleaver @ 7300rpm. In river cruising form it would run 93mph @ 8300rpm with a 24" Yamaha prop. Installed the 10pack and a new set of rings and rodbolts and was going to see what them 3 digits felt like, and the #6 piston couldnít handle the pressure and came out the side @ 9000rpm. Still in the shed as we speak, but on the comeback.ÖT-REX

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