Can I purchase an owner's manual for my older Formula?
Prior to model year 2004, owner's manuals were general in nature and not specific to individual model boats. Consequently, specific information may be limited to that which accompanies components and accessories (e.g., stereos, water heaters, etc.) used in current production models. Wiring diagrams and prop charts and other technical information can be found under the Vintage Formula section of this web site. For model year 2004 boats and newer, more detailed, model-specific manuals are available for purchase. For further information, please contact the Technical Assistance Group (TAG) @ (260)724-1412.
How can I troubleshoot the source of water intrusion into my boat?
Water leaks can be the most difficult problems to diagnose and correct. The key is to identify those conditions in which you generally find water in your boat (e.g., after a rain shower, after you wash down the cockpit, only after use in rough seas, etc.) Once you've identified these conditions, you should be able to narrow down the possible sources for the water intrusion. For example, if you find water on your boat's cabin floor, but only after a thorough cockpit wash down, chances are a cockpit drain fitting or a cabin door or window is leaking.
How does my Formula's automatic/manual bilge pump work?
A float switch or sensor is built into the automatic/manual bilge pump system. When the water level in the bilge reaches the height of the switch/sensor, the pump automatically turns ON. When the water level drops below the float switch or sensor, the pump automatically shuts OFF. If the pump does not appear to be working properly, the circuit breaker between the battery and the pump could be tripped or the float switch/sensor may be stuck in the off position or otherwise disabled. Conversely, a pump that runs continuously may be an indication of a shorted sensor or float switch stuck in the ON position. To override the automatic feature of the bilge pump, use the manual switch found on the dash. If you use the manual switch to turn ON the pump, you must also use the manual switch to turn it OFF. NOTE: The automatic aspect of the bilge pump system is constantly-powered (i.e., it is wired directly to the batteries), while the manual feature can only be utilized with the auxiliary power switched ON.
Specifications of Deck Hardware and External Fasteners
What are the specifications of Formula's external hardware and fasteners?
Swim ladders, bow and hand rails, rub rail insert: 316L stainless steel
Stern eyes, bimini bows (frames) and associated hardware, s.s. windshields: 316 stainless steel
Deck Cleats: 316 Cast stainless steel parts (Attwood custom logo)
All fasteners – internal & external - are to be either 316L or Chromium Plated 304 – exception are some brass fasteners. As of November 2006, gunwale screws were changed to 304 w/Chromium Plating and the washers were converted to 316.
What is power steering?
The power steering found most commonly in boats is very similar to the power steering systems of automobiles. A steering cable is routed between the steering column at the helm and the steering cylinder or ram at the transom. The steering ram is connected to the tiller arm of the outdrive, which consequently moves to port or starboard whenever the steering wheel is turned. A pulley-driven pump is mounted to the engine and delivers pressurized fluid to the steering ram, thereby easing its movement. Generally, only one engine (usually the starboard engine) in a twin-engine installation receives a power steering pump. Consequently, the boat's steering will be power-assisted only when this engine is operating. Some high performance stern drive boats and many larger inboard models are equipped with hydraulic-assisted power steering. In these applications, a pump mounted to one engine or transmission generates hydraulic fluid pressure for the system, facilitating easier operation and less 'slop' and play.
What is power tilt?
Power tilt is the means by which the outdrive can be trimmed to the maximum full up or 'out' position. This is accomplished by using the 'Trailer” switch, generally located on the dash panel of your boat.
What is power trim?
Power trim is the means by which the angle of the propeller is adjusted (stern drive only) in order to change the boat's attitude, thereby optimizing performance.
What is propeller diameter?
A prop's diameter represents the distance across the circle created by a spinning propeller, as measured to the extreme outer edges of the blades' cutting swath. Diameter is generally referenced first when noting a propeller's size (e.g., 14.5" x 28" references a 14.5" diameter propeller).
What is propeller pitch?
Pitch is the distance a propeller would move in one revolution if it was moving through a semi-solid material, such as gelatin. A propeller's pitch is referenced by the second number in the size description (e.g., 14.5" x 28" references a 28" pitch propeller). If this propeller were 100% efficient (i.e., no slip), it would move forward 28 inches in one revolution.
What is the methodology behind a standard speedometer?
A small rubber tube runs from the back of the speedometer to the boat's transom, where it passes through and is connected to a pressure-sensing fitting in the outdrive or a transom-mounted pitot (pick-up). In either case, forward movement of the boat results in changes in air pressure within the tube, which is 'translated' by the speedometer to boat speed in miles per hour. Speedometer accuracy can be influenced by many factors, including damage to the pitot tube and/or obstructions created by weeds, mud, or debris. For more accurate speed readings, use a GPS or a radar gun.
When using a boatlift, what are the recommended lift points?
To prevent structural damage to your Formula boat, the proper procedure must be used when lifting your boat. The recommended method of removing the boat from the water is to use lifting slings. Slings must be the flat, wide-belt type. The spreader bars used with the sling must be long enough to avoid pressure to the gunwales. DO NOT USE CABLE TYPE SLINGS. To ensure proper balance and hull integrity, the rear sling should be located under the front motor mounts, to support the engine weight. Locating the sling under the motor mounts will help ensure that the bottom of the hull will remain straight over time. If the lift uses bunks instead of slings, the rear ones should extend past the transom for proper hull support. The forward sling or bunk location will vary depending on boat weight and length. The forward lifting position will usually be one to two feet forward of the windshield. The slings or bunks on the lift should be adjusted so the boat will rest in the lift with the stern three to six inches lower than the bow. When the lift is adjusted properly, any rainwater which may enter the boat will run to the transom. If the batteries are charged and the auto/manual bilge pump is working properly, any water entering the boat will be removed by the pump.
Where do I find the Hull ID/Serial Number (HIN)?
The Hull ID/Serial Number is physically located on the starboard (right) side of the transom just below the rub rail. This number is also noted on the warranty registration and other paperwork supplied with your Formula at the time of its manufacture.