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Anyone use aftermarket bellows?

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    Anyone use aftermarket bellows?

    Some of you know I'm working on a 99 Capri I just bought. I purchased a bellows kit from SEI Marine. I've ready so many posts on the web with people saying they ONLY would use Mercruiser bellows. Should I return my SEI Kit and purchase an OEM kit? Does anyone here use an aftermarket bellows kit?

    Thank for the input!

    #2
    The bellows kit I purchased from SEI were cracking after 3 years. That's with the boat stored drive down. Recommend OEM
    Huntsville, Alabama
    2009 Bayliner 195 Sport 4.3 TKS
    1979 Basstracker 50hp Mercury "Duck Slayer"

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      #3
      I have read quite a few complaints regarding aftermarket bellows kits and have NEVER read anything bad about OEM (Merc/Quicksilver). I use Quicksilver and consider the extra cost insurance against premature failure... and I believe the Quicksilver will also last longer. Assuming this is true, then for example, if SEI last 3 years and Quicksilver lasts 6 years and is double the price... then they are essentially the same price per year. Lots of assumptions but the avoided risk alone is worth it to me to go with the good stuff.
      1995 Bayliner 2452 Mercruiser 5.7L Alpha 1 Gen 2

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        #4
        Originally posted by mcolvert View Post
        The bellows kit I purchased from SEI were cracking after 3 years. That's with the boat stored drive down. Recommend OEM
        my Sierras are showing signs of early. Cracking in the V of the pleats after 3-4 stored the same way. Stored on trailer inside out of the sun no less! I noticed massaging them looking for leaks that I got nasty back crud on my fingers. Definitely starting to break down. . It’s challenging to buy anything rubber or plastic anymore that’s going to last. I’m an aftermarket guy since the 70s but when it comes to rubber / plastic I’m starting to change my tune. Of course you have to ask just how much better and longer lasting OEM is theses daysfor the big$$$$$...

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          #5
          Cheap cit Chinese rubber ..,

          Buy quicksilver or oem in this case it pays .
          Be good, be happy, for tomorrow is promised to no man !

          1994 2452, 5.0l, Alpha gen. 2 drive. Sold ! Sold ! Sold !

          '86 / 19' Citation cuddy, Merc. 3.0L / 140 hp 86' , stringer drive. Sold ! Sold ! Sold !

          Manalapan N.J

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            #6
            And there you have it, go OEM. I’ve gotten 10 years out of them.
            1997 Maxum 2400 SCR 5.7LX Bravo II

            Mike

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              #7
              Thanks everyone. This is a tedious job so I just purchased an OEM cable and drive shaft bellows. The exhaust - I'll just use the SEI one I already have.

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                #8
                Ok everyone, just an update on the job. I tackled the Bellows install this weekend. It was a real B! I got a Quicksilver gimble bellows and Quicksilver Cable bellows. I used the exhaust bellows from the SEI kit I had. I also replaced the water hose, impeller and that drive shaft seal underneath the impeller. Everything is back together with the exception of the shift cable connection at the engine. I'll tackle that tomorrow as well as fill up the lower unit with gear lube.

                Thanks for the comments and emotional support, LOL!

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