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Old 17-09-2012, 08:02   #1
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Most Reliable Outboard < 10 hp

Right now have a 1984 Johnson 2hp, two-stroke outboard for our little sailing dinghy. Wife worries because it often takes several pulls on the rope to get it to start. Thinking about a replacement.

So, any recommendations for a super-reliable, easy-to-start, small outboard? I'd be willing to go bigger than 2hp, but definitely not bigger than 10. Probably 4-5 hp would be ideal.

Thanks.
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Old 17-09-2012, 08:44   #2
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Hello

I have had really good luck with Tohatsu 4 horse outboards... The are the same as Mercury 4 horse (both made at the same factory in Japan).

I just rebuilt the 2004 Tohatsu (4 horse) from top to bottom for a few bucks and she is just like new.

Why not rebuild the motor you have now and save some money ?

Alan
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Old 17-09-2012, 11:46   #3
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Re: Most Reliable Outboard < 10 hp

I would try to keep the old two stroke running. They are smaller, lighter, less troublesome than 4 strokes. The only downside is mixing oil and higher fuel consumption.

David
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Old 17-09-2012, 11:51   #4
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Re: Most Reliable Outboard < 10 hp

Stick with what you have, nothing better on the market right now.

WHATEVER you get, don't get a Honda 4 stroke (2hp)... do a search here, but they are the worse!
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Old 17-09-2012, 11:52   #5
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Re: Most Reliable Outboard < 10 hp

Quote:
Originally Posted by denverd0n View Post
Right now have a 1984 Johnson 2hp, two-stroke outboard for our little sailing dinghy. Wife worries because it often takes several pulls on the rope to get it to start. Thinking about a replacement.

So, any recommendations for a super-reliable, easy-to-start, small outboard? I'd be willing to go bigger than 2hp, but definitely not bigger than 10. Probably 4-5 hp would be ideal.

Thanks.
One thing to consider is the force of the pull. My 6hp Yamaha 2 stroke starts on 2 pulls, but it's really easy to pull the cord. My 2.5 4 stroke Suzuki also starts on 2 pulls, but it requires much more force to pull the cord. This can be an issue in a crowded dinghy.

Try this to start the Johnson. One pull with the choke out. Put the choke in, set the throttle to start position. Should now start on the second pull.

My Yamaha 2 stroke was quite hard to start warm, but it was a simple matter of a low idle speed.

You might be due for a carb rebuild.

Do you run the motor dry and put stabiliser in the gas?
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Old 18-09-2012, 07:02   #6
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Re: Most Reliable Outboard < 10 hp

You see, the problem is that I'm happy enough with the old Johnson, but my wife has lost confidence in it. Even if I got it completely rebuilt, I'm not sure she would be happy.

And anyone who has been married for as many decades as I have knows... happy wife, happy life.
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Old 18-09-2012, 07:32   #7
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Re: Most Reliable Outboard < 10 hp

I have two mercury motors over twenty years old that are near perfect and very low repairs over that span. Couldn't be happier.
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Old 18-09-2012, 07:52   #8
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Re: Most Reliable Outboard < 10 hp

I have a ten year old Johnson (OMC) 6hp 2 stroke. Starts on the second pull when cold and first pull when warm.

You can generally find them used for under $500, which leaves a margin to have it serviced and still have a bargain.

I'd like to upgrade to a 9.9hp to get the 10' RIB on plane with more than just me onboard, but it's hard to give up such a reliable motor.
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Old 18-09-2012, 08:43   #9
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Re: Most Reliable Outboard < 10 hp

I'd be looking at the Lehr propane outboards...
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Old 18-09-2012, 09:48   #10
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Re: Most Reliable Outboard < 10 hp

wouldn't part with my 1968 Evinrude mate 1.5 hp for the world! simple. reliable. durable. Many parts still available! Best part is the weight..super light. more than enough power to dinghy to shore (won't be pulling a water tube!)

Plus at a dinghy dock, it is the MOST unlikely one to get stolen with all the other, bigger, newer, shinier motors to pick from!
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