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Old 19-04-2006, 16:34   #1
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Outboard connundrum... which one to keep??

Well, I have a Johnson 9.9 that I have to replace the water pump on. I also have a Tohatsu 5hp that works perfectly.

Problem: I really can only keep one.

Pros/Cons:

9.9hp Pros: Planes 10' inflatable with ease. Plenty of power
9.9hp Cons: Weights so much it's hard to handle. Needs work on water pump (already have the kit). It's a 1987 and runs a little more roughly than the other outboard. Harder to pull start, carry, and basically do everything with. Chews up the transom of my inflatable when taken on and off.

Tohatsu Pros: Runs well. Smooth operation... pull starts with ease. Can carry with one hand. My wife can handle it.
Tohatsu Cons: Can't plane the inflatable.

Uses: Will be used as primary transportation to/from the boat while at anchor, which is 100% of the time. Also will be used to ferry guests back and forth many times per day. Will be used to get bicycles ashore for guests and for us.

I am leaning toward the Tohatsu since it moves the inflatable just fine, and it will just reach plane with only me in it. It will NOT plane with anyone else in it or any extra weight. I will typically have two other adults with me when ferrying passengers back and forth.

Any input? What would you do in this situation?
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Old 19-04-2006, 16:43   #2
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I’d agree with your evaluation, and keep the 5 HP Tohatsu, fore now. You shouldn’t have many long runs to shore along the Eastern Seaboard.
However, "down island", a bigger (planing) outboard will be immeasurably preferable.
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Old 19-04-2006, 16:43   #3
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Outboards are kept for a very long time, but have a very short lifespan. At least in salt water. Not sure how new the Tohatsu is. Also consider the fact that the heavier outboard will be less likely to be pulled out of the water than the lighter one. This will shorten it's lifespan even more. THat said, you can still get parts for a 50 year old Johnson. Not sure about parts and service availability on the Tohatsu. Is either a 4 stroke? If not, I would sell them both and invest in a good 4 stroke. I hope you can find some useful info in there
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Old 19-04-2006, 17:06   #4
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The best make & model of outboard a cruiser can have, is what the locals, in your cruising grounds, were buying about 8-10 years ago. The island dump will be full of engines, from which to scavenge free parts. I’ve repaired dozens of outboards, with free parts from the dump.
In the 90's, Johnson & Evinrude’s (OMC) were ubiquitous in Bahamian dumps; but the newer engines were Yamaha’s - so they’ll probably have showed up in the dumps by now. Of course, the locals usually drive larger (25 HP & UP) engines.
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Old 19-04-2006, 17:09   #5
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Out here, everyone is buying the Mercury 4 strokes, but based on my experience, and GORD's logic, you can expect to find plenty of parts, and need them.
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Old 19-04-2006, 18:28   #6
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Thanks for the input, guys. Hmmmm... still leaves me wondering a bit since my cruising grounds will be changing over the years. I'll certainly be heading to the Caribbean in the not-too-distant future. I do remember while working down there that it was very useful to have the 21' Nouvarania "dinghy" to get around.

Launching that was simple... huge crane dropped it from the yacht's deck.

Gord... I assume while you were cruising down there, you had a heavy 9.9 outboard? Any tricks to not dropping it in the water when it got bouncy?

I have the little outboard sling, and I'm going to buy at set of blocks for the end of the boom this week to rig up a system of mechanical advantage. Still doesn't help me while I'm down in the tender trying to affix the outboard to the ever-splintering transom, or while I'm wrestling it from the pushpit to the end of the boom.

If I keep the 9.9 based on future needs, I'll need to find some way to manage the deployment, as well as finding a way to make it possible for my wife to deploy.

Maybe I should keep both??

I sure can make a simple thing like this confusing, huh? ha ha ha

Just always trying to do the most efficient/correct thing.
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Old 19-04-2006, 18:36   #7
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Sean, a little anecdote on not dropping the outboard. Tie everything together, but not to you. While removing my outboard from the inflateable, wich was very securely tied to the dock (or so I thought), as I lifted the engine, and started to step onto the dock, the boat tipped. I sat back into the boat, but the outboard went between the dock and the boat. I held on. Had I been a smaller guy, I would have had to drop it to surface, but some tricks learned while white water rafting enabled me to keep my lower body in the boat. I did get dunked . I managed to save the motor, and not go swimming, but mostly through luck not skill.
Lessons learned, Only lift the outboard from the dock, or have a second person on the dock to hand it too. Attach a safety line from the outboard to the boat so if it does go over, it can be pulled back in. Finally, LET GO! Oh well. Live and learn.
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Old 19-04-2006, 20:00   #8
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Sean,

You might consider a Garhauer removable lifting "davit" or crane. It is a smap to install, set up and dismount and makes removing a heavy motor no problem. With a mid weight one the tendency is to tow it and not stow it. But with the heavier motor you want to stow it and this device does the deed. It is very well made, and quite inexpensive...comes complete with rigging and blocks.... and you can use it to move other heavy loads.. like batteries etc. I think this is a good solution and you can always go with a heavier ... more HP motor in the future. Taking it down and stowing will perserve the lines of your boat...

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Old 19-04-2006, 20:14   #9
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Sean

From my past posts you know my vote -- the 9.9 you'll be happy you have the extra hp from time to time and it may make all the difference against foul currents/winds/waves with a full load.

Lifting and managing the heavier unit is a challenge and the obvious solution is to get a crane of some type or use the main halyard. We did the later for years until finally broke down and installed an outboard crane - it made it much easier as the angles are better as you move the motor to the rail mount. We installed the Kato crane and are very happy.
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Old 20-04-2006, 00:34   #10
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Outboard Dilema

I have had both an old Johnson 9.9 and a Tohatsu 5, and totally agree that the Johnson is heavier and more cumbersome to move. I also have a Tohatsu 2.5 for a small inflatable.

The big advantage I liked with the Tohatsu, both the 5 and 2.5, is the integrated tank. I like not having the additional tank in dinghy that is already confined space.

Just a thought.

Regards

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Old 20-04-2006, 02:45   #11
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Actually, we never had the ideal outboard & dink combination.
We started out with a ‘Mercury’ 3 HP, c/w Integral Tank & External Fuel Supply connection, on an 9' Zodiac.
I subsequently acquired a 6 HP ‘Johnson’, and then a 10' Water Tender (Hard PVC Tri-Hull), which we preferred to the Zodiac.
When at Staniel Cay, we had a 13' Boston Whaler c/w 35HP ‘OMC’ - obviously too big to drag around behind a C&C29, so it remained in Staniel.
As others have said, bigger is better; and more is ... (well) more.
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Old 20-04-2006, 05:21   #12
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I think I like Rick's idea of having a backup. The 5hp is quite light, so I could stow it below somewhere where it would be safe from the elements. Although, when outboards sit, that's what kills them most.

As far as cranes go, we are not in a position to purchase those very nice items this year. We have already sunk in an enormous amount of $$ into this boat during the winter refit. I would enjoy a crane though!

See, I guess I'm picturing the same situation that happened with the Johnson 9.9 during my delivery of this boat last spring. We'd be in a bumpy anchorage, I'd be along side in the dinghy, and my wife would be up on deck lowering the outboard to me with the new sling and blocks we have for the end of the boom. Of course, I would have had to get the outboard set up for her since she can't move it. (Big drawback)

So I'm down in the dinghy, with the deck of the boat at about eye level, while I'm standing up in the dinghy (that how much freeboard we have, even at the stern!).

So here I am tied up to a bouncing hull that is rolling and pitching and dragging me in the dinghy all over the place while the outboard comes down. Somehow, I have to maintain my balance in the small boat as it smacks against the larger boat's hull, bouncing back and forth. During all this, I have to wrestle a 75-100lb (and awkward!) outboard onto the transom of the inflatable.

I just remember this was something I really didn't like.

Ok... well, I guess I couldn't figure this out since there isn't a great solution. I'll keep the 9.9 based on my need to sometimes travel a great distance from an anchorage to an area attraction. Maybe we'll spring for the crane next year... or maybe a new outboad when this one goes in the drink to hang out with my screw drivers.
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Old 20-04-2006, 06:35   #13
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The Garhaurer:

Lifting Davit
LD 6-1 length:
width:
weight: 15 lb. shackle:
height 64" 2 piece stainless steel construction, with collapsible arm for easy stowing. Comes complete with 60' of line.

$265.00

Well worth it!

Jef
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Old 20-04-2006, 09:45   #14
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Sean,

On my previous boat, I made a lifting davit out of 1" SS pipe by bending it into an "L" shape, making a compression strut to span the bend out of a short piece of pipe and a couple of bimini fittings, and bolting a U-bolt on the end to hold a block and tackle. I attached a larger piece of SS pipe with an ID the size of the davit OD (1") to the stern stanchion with pipe clamps and inserted the davit into it. This allowed the davit to swivel from the stern mounting pad to outboard for lowering the motor to the dingy. The total cost was $0 because I already had scrap pipe. I'm sure you could scrounge some scrap pipe in a boat yard. Look for mangled biminis or dodger frames being tossed out. I used this for an older 8hp and it worked great for many years (actually still working for the new owners).

A picture of it is here
http://static.flickr.com/54/113054223_9d97b0bca7_b.jpg
Unfortunately, it isn't a very good picture from which to get building details. But the design is simple and I'm sure you could manufacture something similar.

Mark
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Old 20-04-2006, 10:40   #15
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Nice Boat

Nice boat Mark and excellent davit... Is that Dering Harbor, Shelter Island, by any chance?
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