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Old 12-08-2014, 20:27   #16
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Re: need a new dingy motor

I had so much trouble on my Florida cruise last winter with my 4hp Yamaha that was 10 years old, I bought a 5hp Lehr Propane. They make a 2-1/2 hp too. They run off either a tank or the 16 oz cans of propane available almost everywhere. I have only used it about 5 hours but it is great and there is NO MORE GUMMY ETHANOL to worry about! Propane is clean burning with absolutely no residue. There is a learning curve to get used to as they are a little different, but it is the future of small outboards. Once you learn to bleed the carburetor on first attaching the canister, they start on the first or second pull. You just need to get the air out of the line from the fuel canister to the carb.

The 5 HP runs about 30 minutes at full throttle on a small 16 oz canister and I hour at 1/2 throttle. For my dinghy 1/2 throttle runs me at 4K so that is what I use. The fuel consumption on the 2-1/2 Hp is about an hour at full throttle and 2 hours at half throttle based on comments on this board. I bout an4 foot section of pvc pipe, put a solid end cap on one end and a clean out plug on the other and it will hold 3 cans. I throw it in the dinghy with one can on the motor and have enough fuel for 4 hours of motoring. No more gas to spill in the cockpit.

Hopcar, a regular on this board, is a dealer and very knowledgeable on these engines. Do a search and you can see what others think.


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Old 12-08-2014, 21:18   #17
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Re: need a new dingy motor

Let's see, where do I start first? Dependability? Lehr propane doesn't gum up the carb, the fuel doesn't deteriorate with storage, and is available in more places than fresh gasoline. Oh, and it's half the price per gallon for the same horsepower. Simplicity? Plug in a canister, or hook up a bigger bottle. Go! Cost and weight? Same as a gasoline. Smoke and fumes? Nope. And don't even bother comparing the environmental benefits, the gasoline engines can't even approach the propane motors. We are on the cusp of a whole new game here. You can get in it now, or spend the same bucks to enjoy the attributes of gasoline engines. Please, someone, remind what they were, again?
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Old 12-08-2014, 21:28   #18
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Re: need a new dingy motor

I added up the cost of keeping my Yamaha running for the previous 5 years and it was $660 in mechanics bills. Aside from the money, it wouldn't run when I needed it! Not so with the Lehr, starts every time. Yamaha makes an excellent motor, but the gas is unstable and crap these days. I used only NON-ETHANOL gas with Stabil and still clogged the carb jets. One mechanic told me they are the size of a hair! I considered going to the next carb size up that would fit my motor, but was advised anything under 15 hp was experiencing problems. I just don't use the motor enough to keep it cleared out, but whenI want to use it, I want it to run!


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Old 12-08-2014, 21:48   #19
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Re: need a new dingy motor

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Originally Posted by Roy M View Post
Let's see, where do I start first? Dependability? Lehr propane doesn't gum up the carb, the fuel doesn't deteriorate with storage, and is available in more places than fresh gasoline. Oh, and it's half the price per gallon for the same horsepower. Simplicity? Plug in a canister, or hook up a bigger bottle. Go! Cost and weight? Same as a gasoline. Smoke and fumes? Nope. And don't even bother comparing the environmental benefits, the gasoline engines can't even approach the propane motors. We are on the cusp of a whole new game here. You can get in it now, or spend the same bucks to enjoy the attributes of gasoline engines. Please, someone, remind what they were, again?
was thinking about the motor BUT compairing it to a 4 stroke gas motor, the paperwork shows it uses much more per gallon for the same horsepower.. and around here , the california delta, the propane sells for within a few cents of that of Gas.
avalable product is another issue.. gas is normally avalable at a gas dock as is diesel, but I have had to take a buss around areas to find someone to sell propane. its not avalable at most docks..
and the more I dig into it the less I like what I hear.. service sucks.. have a customer with one that the bottom end is leaking and hes about to return it as he cant get it serviced..
And then you have those little things that the company dosent tell you about until you get stuck somewhere, like using a paper-clip to relieve the preasure on the diaphram when you have a preasure lock and it wont start.
I agree about a change to be made but its not quite where it should be for me to spend money on it..
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Old 13-08-2014, 10:00   #20
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Re: need a new dingy motor

I am starting to lien toward the Lehr 2.5.


I like the fact of carrying one less fuel on board!

I hate the recommendation of draining the fuel out of the internal tank when not in use on gas engines.... one more thing I have to think about.

I already have propane fiberglass tank on board.

I am local to west marine I assume that's an advantage should issues arise.

I realize that there could other issues with the Lehr although they are unknown to me at this time.
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Old 13-08-2014, 10:13   #21
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Re: need a new dingy motor

I bought the Honda 2.3 (or whatever) about four years ago to power my new dinghy. I needed something light enough to handle easily.

It's been fine but if I had it to do over today I would lean strongly towards the propane outboard because of the issues with storing and handling gasoline and the fact that the motor often goes for weeks or months without being used.
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Old 13-08-2014, 13:16   #22
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Re: need a new dingy motor

Let me say first that I am a Lehr dealer so I have a financial interest in this discussion.

That said I personally own a Lehr 2.5. It replaced a 2hp Suzuki 2 cycle.
My dinghy engine sits for months at a time without running. I had to clean the carb on the Suzuki each time I used it. Yes I did all the things you're supposed to do to avoid that.

The starting procedure for the Lehr after several months is to bleed the air from the fuel line (you need a paper clip) and pull the cord twice.

It is almost twice as heavy as my old 2 cycle but it is still manageable at under forty pounds. It is also more powerful.

It can be run on the one pound propane canisters but this is expensive fuel. I bought one of the 11 pound fiberglass tanks and run it off that. I carry a canister as a reserve fuel supply. Propane is often significantly cheaper if you buy it from a place that fuels forklifts rather than campers and barbeques.

As for the environment, propane engines pollute significantly less than either 2 cycle or 4 cycle gasoline engines.

Service availability is not where it should be yet. They are adding service centers every day but there are not enough yet. That said they are pretty easy for any outboard mechanic to work on. The only thing unusual that he will encounter is the fuel delivery system. If there is a problem with that, you just replace it. Even I can do that. The phone number for their customer service department is printed on the tiller of the engine. They are very responsive to problems.

If you decide to buy a Lehr, I would like the opportunity to quote you on it.
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Old 13-08-2014, 13:53   #23
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Re: need a new dingy motor

thank you for your reply. your contribution to the board is appreciated! I like you website.

I am in so cal and need the motor tomorrow. probably will get at west marine. MDR
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Old 13-08-2014, 14:03   #24
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Re: need a new dingy motor

I, too, have a lehr 2.5. Overall, I like it. I love the simplicity of the fuel, I love the clean-burning aspect. I love it's wierd enough it's not likely to get stolen.

But mine has has some service issues. It idles too fast and bogs (hesitates) when you open the throttle. Turning the idle screw down dosen't help enough. If I could figure out how to adjust mixture I think that's the problem as both symptoms are classic rich mixture. (Yes, I need to call Lehr)...

My neighbor has one too - and his runs great.

Not a good pick for crusing long-distance, unless you line up propane fills. For around here, I just refill the little cans from by BBQ tank. (Yes.. I'm aware of the hazards of refilling the cans)
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Old 13-08-2014, 15:00   #25
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Re: need a new dingy motor

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I love it's wierd enough it's not likely to get stolen.
yeah that why I need a motor. my 2.3 Honda was stolen right of my dingy in mission bay SD.
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Old 13-08-2014, 15:06   #26
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Re: need a new dingy motor

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yeah that why I need a motor. my 2.3 Honda was stolen right of my dingy in mission bay SD.
I was a bit off-put hearing you had it stolen, as my belief is motor theft isn't all that common in so-cal. Heck, half the boats in my marina (dana point) have a dinghy and motor just tied to the back of their boat.

Where in Mission Bay was it stolen?

(And the too-weird to steal thing is an opinion, not backed by any empirical data whatsoever)
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Old 13-08-2014, 15:23   #27
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Re: need a new dingy motor

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Where in Mission Bay was it stolen?
there is a little bay that allows anchoring. its on the bay side of mission beach. we actually left it on the beach next to some other small sailboats there. we went to get a bite and the motor was gone. the funny thing is that we lost out emergency oars the day before so we had to paddle by hand back to the boat.

this is the first time for me. I leave my dingy all the time at Avalon with no issues.
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Old 13-08-2014, 15:33   #28
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Re: need a new dingy motor

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So by this logic, because someone is worse than you, that makes whatever you do OK?
Well, by your own logic, you must use a people powered rowboat or kayak for a dinghy, right? Otherwise, you'd be a hypocrite, preaching that your internal combustion engine is better and everyone should agree with your choice for your reasons.

Internal combustion is either bad or it isn't. I'm guessing you have one, so you're saying it isn't.
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Old 13-08-2014, 15:36   #29
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Re: need a new dingy motor

We gave up on gasoline outboards and got a 5hp Lehr when they first came out a few years ago. It's clean, reliable, and Lehr was very responsive to questions. Hopkins-Carter is also a great resource for these motors. Nice to have one less fuel aboard too. At some point we'll likely add a 9.9 or a 15, but for now the 5 is perfect for our purposes. (No affiliation with Lehr or Hopkins-Carter, just a happy customer.)
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Old 13-08-2014, 15:57   #30
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pirate Re: need a new dingy motor

Don't tell Jack B but I am happy with my simple little Merc two stroke. It's like me: old and simple. In goes air and gas/fuel ... out comes power. Wax on ... wax off.

The Lehr is the future but I'll wait for NextGen Lehr or go electric with solar. I have no need for speed.
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