I bought a Lehr 5 hp motor
for the 2014 season in New England
. The motor
came highly endorsed, including accolades from the publication Practical Sailor. I bought into the Lehr story and the environmental angle, etc. I ended up highly disappointed. I purchased my motor from Defender Industries. My experience with Defender, relative to my purchase
and ultimate return of the motor, was disappointing as well, but that is not the focus here. Below you will find the issues I had after just 10 hours of operation. The idea of a propane outboard
is quite intriguing. I suggest waiting until Yamaha, Honda
or Tohatsu start building them. An opportunity for you learn from my mistake. In the end I just felt the product was something would not last. For reference my 5p Nissan
(Tohatsu) 2 cycle is 17 years old and still works very well, but I was looking to get a new motor.
1) Dropping significant amounts of crankcase oil
. Mostly during and shorty after running. Conversations with Lehr customer service
implied that I was overfilling the crankcase, although I never filled above the upper fill line. Clearly, I was not overfilling the crankcase.
2) Motor connection assembly for large fuel tank
fell apart when I went to attach it to the tank for the first time. I believe that this is a potentially significant safety
issue because of the serious consequences of a propane
leak. I reattached the assembly from both sides. It is virtually impossible to get a wench on the external fitting to make sure it is secure against the external backing plate. What prevents this coming loose again? A big concern from my perspective.
3)Throttle friction block assembly. 2nd one has failed. Threading metal machine screw into a plastic block will not last very long. Other motor manufacturers thread metal to metal on their friction blocks.
rotation Friction lock assembly. Frozen in place. I tried to adjust the lock with the finger pads. It would not work. I then attempted to loosed it with light grip of channel locks, and the finger pads cracking are now cracking.
to Engine cover seal strips. Lifting on both sides. It is hard to believe they will last for the life of the motor.
6) Engine Cover attachment clips. Front and rear don't align. Again, it is difficult to believe they will last.
key attachment , red rubber boot is torn. That should not happen with this little use.
8) I haven't been able to get the motor to idle properly. That is a big negative compared to other out boards I have owned.