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Old 14-10-2010, 12:14   #1
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Feasability of British Seagull Outboard

I have a class 15' sailing skiff that I am contemplating getting a good small outboard motor for. I was thinking that a nice refurbished Seagull would complement the look of the boat. the apparent simplicity also appeals to me. Considering they haven't been made for some while I am wondering if this is a good idea. There is an individual in Great Brittan that works on and sells rebuilt units and of course his website claims the reliability of these little engines is legendary. Wondering if any of the members are still running an old Seagull and could comment on whether getting involved with an antique power plant is a good idea?

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Old 14-10-2010, 12:23   #2
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I wouldn't have any concerns about it....go for it.
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Old 14-10-2010, 12:38   #3
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You DID sya GOOD, right?? In my experience that pretty much rules out old Seagulls!
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Old 14-10-2010, 12:52   #4
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I've owned three seagulls in my lifetime. All started and ran ok. They are a very old design, very noisy, leak fuel when in the up position and smoke a lot because they are either 10 to 1 fuel ratio or 25 to 1 depending on which model you have.
The up side is that once you get them to run properly it is hard to kill them. I overturned a dinghy in the surf while the engine was running once and took it ashore and cleaned it up and had it running again within 15 minutes.
I now have a 80s model Johnson 4hp that is much better, easier on fuel and oil and much quieter. It is just as dependable if I run it out of fuel each time I use it.
kind regards,
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Old 14-10-2010, 13:05   #5
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Boy are you going to get an ear full. Plenty of people would not take a Seagull if you gave it to them, others think they are great.

Here's my take on them.

A Seagull will last forever, but then when it doesn't run most of the time it's not getting much wear and tear so it should last forever.

A Seagull is simple and easy to work on, but then it needs to be because you are always working on it.

It is said that Seagulls due to the 4 or 5 blade props and low RPM have a lot of torque compared to similar HP outboards. This makes them better suited for powering a small sailboat. Sounds logical to me.

I have spoken to sailors that love their Seaguils and claim they are easy to start and reliable, you just need to know how to coax them into life by the right techniques. These tricks and techniques I never learned. The best day of my ownership of a Seagull was the day it was stolen.
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Old 14-10-2010, 13:09   #6
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Sorry to say, but this does not appear to be the place to ask about SeaGull motors. There is in fact, a fanatical group of owners who prize these things like Bugattis, and other rare mechanical items.
There are clubs in Australia and New Zealand, and a dedicated group of guys here in Bermuda who build the motors, and the 16 to 24 ft long x 2ft wide "splinter" boats, of 3/16" ply, to a huge following at the races.
If you can find one for sale, don't be surprised at the price being asked.
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Old 14-10-2010, 13:09   #7
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If you like antiques then go for it. It will do the job, driving you to distraction at times, but it will do the job. Always carry a spare spark plug and shear pin.

P.
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Old 14-10-2010, 13:23   #8
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Old 14-10-2010, 13:31   #9
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Please don't listen to all the doom merchants

I invite you to an evenings interesting reading on the subject

Saving Old Seagulls: Free British Seagull information, Engine serial number identifier,advice, forum and spare parts.

This one is mine and probably as old as I am, its my retirement present for use in 12 years time

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Old 14-10-2010, 13:39   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete7 View Post
Please don't listen to all the doom merchants

I invite you to an evenings interesting reading on the subject

Saving Old Seagulls: Free British Seagull information, Engine serial number identifier,advice, forum and spare parts.

This one is mine and probably as old as I am, its my retirement present for use in 12 years time

Pete
The guys I referred to, do amazing things with them. I understand that the flywheels, ignition systems, and crankcases were 2-stroke, Villiers motorcycle engine parts (or close to them) and could be ported and carbed for quite surprising power bands.
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Old 14-10-2010, 13:42   #11
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I know where there is one for free in the bottom of a lagoon in the Tuamotus. It failed to start one too many times. I found you can row an Avon Redcrest dinghy long distances because I had to.
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Old 14-10-2010, 16:23   #12
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An article was written by Chris Ayres in The Coastal Passage magazine. Google it. He says it like it is about the 'good old seagull'
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Old 14-10-2010, 17:41   #13
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Hmm, weren't they first designed as single use throw aways for landin at Normandy? The first of our disposable society??
That said. the one I grew up around could always be tinkered with and made to run...just not for too long befroe it needed more tinkering . Rather simple but cantankerouse to say the least. For a sailboat it might make sense ...if you need some weight astern.
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Old 14-10-2010, 17:51   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete7 View Post
Please don't listen to all the doom merchants

I invite you to an evenings interesting reading on the subject

Saving Old Seagulls: Free British Seagull information, Engine serial number identifier,advice, forum and spare parts.

This one is mine and probably as old as I am, its my retirement present for use in 12 years time

Pete
Sheeesh.. is that really an engine? It looks like an oversized milkshake machine
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Old 14-10-2010, 18:12   #15
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they run like other brit engines and cars did and still do--- by the grace of lucas.
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