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Old 01-04-2016, 10:25   #1
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Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

I really dislike deploying my dink from it's davits. I have a 10 1/2 foot hard-bottom AB with a 15 HP Merc 4-stroke (111 lbs) on it. Even using an electric winch to retrieve the "heavy" (engine) end - it's still a PIA. The dink has to be foot-nudged to transition the swim platform (up as well as down). We actually plot to leave the dog at home to avoid the repeated dink trips. There are only two of us using the dink and we are both only average -sized people. The boat lives in a slip.

I am considering buying a Honda 2.3 HP 4-stroke (30 lbs) instead. I realize that the trips will be a lot slower and that the dink will not plane. I also realize that I will not have a reverse gear and will have to rotate the engine to back up. I leave the current engine on the dink full-time - I do not have an engine hoist. If I did I am convinced I would NEVER EVER use the dink. And to me, even though we only do coastal cruising and we are within the manufacturer's design weight limits - that's a lot of weight for the davits to support. I had to remove them from the boat once to weld a crack from a support to the major tubing. I also love the idea of an integral fuel - no external tank to schlep into the dink.

What think ye?
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:31   #2
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

Obviously you are in the land where 2 stoke engines are banned. 2 stroke is much lighter.
I had a 3.5 Mercury 2 stroke and that had plenty of guts, wouldn't get near a plane.
Isn't there a Honda 4HP?
I just wonder if 2.3hp is enough?



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Old 01-04-2016, 10:35   #3
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

We have a 10' PorteBote (we had a 12' PorteBote for years before the 10') and a 9.9HP 2-stoke Nissan and a 2 HP 2-stroke Suzuki. We've been using that combination for 15-years.

If we are in an anchorage for the day or just overnight we use the little motor. If we are going to be there for a while we use the big motor. Or, if we are going fishing and plan to troll a lot we use the Suzuki.

Our PorteBot goes 22 knots (GPS) with two of us and the Nissan. It will plane with my 110 pound wife and the 2 HP Suzuki but is limited to 6-knots with two of us aboard with the Suzuki.

Our Suzuki has NO gearbox and weighs 20-pounds. That has never been a problem and is not something we even think about.

I have a homebuilt hoist for the 60-pound electric start Nissan. I designed it to pick the motor off the pushpit mount and then lower it to the dinghy mount. I can do the whole operation in 2-minutes by myself.

The Suzuki is light enough that I stand in the dinghy and reach up over my head and grab the Suzuki by hand and just lift it off the pushpit mount.

Having both motors for speed and for ease of use has worked out very well for us.

I doubt a 2-HP Honda would be enough power with a heavy RIB. Can you borrow a little motor to test? We thought about an electric trolling motor to use in place of the Suzuki and borrowed one to use for a few days. We hated it and decided not to go that route.

I sure would try / test a little motor before purchasing it.
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:37   #4
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
Obviously you are in the land where 2 stoke engines are banned. 2 stroke is much lighter.
I had a 3.5 Mercury 2 stroke and that had plenty of guts, wouldn't get near a plane.
Isn't there a Honda 4HP?
I just wonder if 2.3hp is enough?



Sent from a stupid phone that replaces words with weird stuff.
I was really looking for the low-end of weight and I've read that the 2-strokes are LOUD. My question as well - is this enough HP to push the AB and the two of us? And will deploying/retrieving be changed enough to make a major difference? "Is the juice worth the squeeze?"
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:49   #5
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

I had a 2.5 HP for years and it was slow etc. and I had not faith in it getting be back to the boat if the wind picked up too much. It finally gave out and I replaced it with a 6 HP. I don't find the weight difference all that much and leave the motor on the dinghy on the davits. It will plane with 1 person but not 2 in it. It's water cooled so it it is a LOT quieter than the 2.5 HP was (a HUGE plus). And of course it's faster and more powerful.

I would recommend something more along these lines (5-6 HP) than a 2.5 HP that really only has a plus of 20 lbs lighter and really does not have the power for 2 people and a dog.
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:50   #6
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

Yes, it will be enough to push you. Slowly. At least in calm water. Going into any significant wind/current/waves, maybe not.

Perhaps like TacomaSailor, the solution is two engines. One for "most of the time," and one for "when we need some real ooomph!"
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:52   #7
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

If in Miami wouldn't the real answer be to sail over to the Bahamas and get a stroke outboard? Isn't a 15 HP 2 stroke about the same weight as a 5 HP 4 stroke?
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Old 01-04-2016, 11:17   #8
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TacomaSailor View Post
We have a 10' PorteBote (we had a 12' PorteBote for years before the 10') and a 9.9HP 2-stoke Nissan and a 2 HP 2-stroke Suzuki. We've been using that combination for 15-years.

If we are in an anchorage for the day or just overnight we use the little motor. If we are going to be there for a while we use the big motor. Or, if we are going fishing and plan to troll a lot we use the Suzuki.

Our PorteBot goes 22 knots (GPS) with two of us and the Nissan. It will plane with my 110 pound wife and the 2 HP Suzuki but is limited to 6-knots with two of us aboard with the Suzuki.

Our Suzuki has NO gearbox and weighs 20-pounds. That has never been a problem and is not something we even think about.

I have a homebuilt hoist for the 60-pound electric start Nissan. I designed it to pick the motor off the pushpit mount and then lower it to the dinghy mount. I can do the whole operation in 2-minutes by myself.

The Suzuki is light enough that I stand in the dinghy and reach up over my head and grab the Suzuki by hand and just lift it off the pushpit mount.

Having both motors for speed and for ease of use has worked out very well for us.

I doubt a 2-HP Honda would be enough power with a heavy RIB. Can you borrow a little motor to test? We thought about an electric trolling motor to use in place of the Suzuki and borrowed one to use for a few days. We hated it and decided not to go that route.

I sure would try / test a little motor before purchasing it.
I know you're right re. couple of minutes from rail hoist to stern of dink. But that's a two-person job, no? And add in all the OTHER two minute jobs (cushions/PFD's, fuel tank, registration, portable VHF, phone, hat, water, wallet etc.) and I feel like I'm launching a new cruise liner to get the dink going. Add in 90 degree temps here in the subtropics and the trip to get a beer and feel dry land just becomes an "Awww , f*^% it". Too much trouble. I would really LIKE to want to use the dink!
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Old 01-04-2016, 11:22   #9
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

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Originally Posted by denverd0n View Post
Yes, it will be enough to push you. Slowly. At least in calm water. Going into any significant wind/current/waves, maybe not.

Perhaps like TacomaSailor, the solution is two engines. One for "most of the time," and one for "when we need some real ooomph!"
You're experience is that in strong winds (15-20K ?) the 2.3 may be all but useless?
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Old 01-04-2016, 11:34   #10
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichandHelen View Post
I really dislike deploying my dink from it's davits. I have a 10 1/2 foot hard-bottom AB with a 15 HP Merc 4-stroke (111 lbs) on it. Even using an electric winch to retrieve the "heavy" (engine) end - it's still a PIA. The dink has to be foot-nudged to transition the swim platform (up as well as down). We actually plot to leave the dog at home to avoid the repeated dink trips. There are only two of us using the dink and we are both only average -sized people. The boat lives in a slip.

I am considering buying a Honda 2.3 HP 4-stroke (30 lbs) instead. I realize that the trips will be a lot slower and that the dink will not plane. I also realize that I will not have a reverse gear and will have to rotate the engine to back up. I leave the current engine on the dink full-time - I do not have an engine hoist. If I did I am convinced I would NEVER EVER use the dink. And to me, even though we only do coastal cruising and we are within the manufacturer's design weight limits - that's a lot of weight for the davits to support. I had to remove them from the boat once to weld a crack from a support to the major tubing. I also love the idea of an integral fuel - no external tank to schlep into the dink.

What think ye?
A good dinghy and engine is never lightweight.

The loads on the davits will tend to peak at almost 4g. That's 4 x the static load. The loading is also at a low enough frequency that strain becomes the primary failure mode. Therefore cracking of the davits may occur at as little as 1000 cycles.

We keep our 10.5' AB rib and 15hp yamaha outboard on the foredeck and aft rail respectively. An engine lift is definitely needed.

Deployment requires some effort. We're about to install custom articulated davits that clear our wind vane. I've engineered them for the AB dinghy and 15hp outboard.

We're looking at a portland pudgy, with oars and sails, as our backup dinghy and liferaft. We're trying to avoid buying another smaller outboard.

What about an electric outboard? Like a torqueedo?

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Old 01-04-2016, 11:54   #11
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

There are some lightweight 4-4.5 HP 2 strokes with gears and internal tanks that are great. Merc being one. If you can buy used.
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Old 01-04-2016, 12:01   #12
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

The air cooled Hondas are loud! Just search craigslist for a used Mercury 3.3hp 2-stroke. Ours has been very reliable and just enough power for all conditions with our 136 pound RIB. We carried a 9.9hp Johnson for years, but never took it off the rail because the Mercury was light, sipped fuel and I didn't have to worry about anyone stealing it in the caribbean.

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Old 01-04-2016, 12:56   #13
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

"Too much trouble. I would really LIKE to want to use the dink!"

Our PorteBote rows like a dream. I purchased a pair of serious 8' oars and oarlocks which are always in the boat. When I want quick and simple I row.

"And add in all the OTHER two minute jobs (cushions/PFD's, fuel tank, registration, portable VHF, phone, hat, water, wallet etc.) and I feel like I'm launching a new cruise liner to get the dink going. "

You will have to do all those things even if you row or use the small motor (I always have at least one-gallon of spare gas in a separate container in the dink).

I understand what you are saying but, after a few years cruising, I was able to make the "the journey is the thing" a part of my thought process. Sure, it takes a few minutes to get everything ready to go but - the shore is not going to move, the beer will stay cold, and you have nothing but time when cruising so just consider all those small tasks as an enjoyable part of the trip ashore.

We spent 3-summers in the HOT north Sea of Cortez - I'm afraid there is nothing you can do about the sweaty 90 degree problem - that's life.
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Old 01-04-2016, 13:26   #14
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

In a word, "no", if you ask me.

That's a pretty heavy RIB, and even if you're willing to give up planing ability, you should not be willing to give up the ability to get back to the mother ship against a bit of wind and sea.

I downsized from an Avon wheel-steered 340 RIB with 25hp two stroke, which could only be carried in davits since the motor, being wheel steered, wouldn't come off easily, to an Avon Lite 310 folding RIB, with 8hp four stroke tiller steered Selva engine.

There are no actually good solutions to this problem, so don't hope for it -- the best is some kind of compromise which is acceptable to YOU.

My new dink is far less seaworthy and capacious than the workhorse old one, but this compromise is better for me since I just couldn't any longer schlepp the big dinghy with motor mounted back and forth across thousands of miles of sea in the davits. It was driving me crazy. The new one folds up and lives in its own bag on the foredeck for longer passages, or can be put into the davits for shorter ones.


The Selva one-lunger on the new dink vibrates like an old BSA Gold Star. But it's torquey like that old thumper, and will plane the RIB with three people plus carp on board. AND, I can lift it with one hand, so it's feasible for rail storage with no engine lift.

I reckon you would want the lightest 8 to 10 hp outboard you can find, maybe a two stroke.

The Selva Black Bass like mine might be worth a look. Its claim to fame is that it is extremely light, equal to or even lighter than two strokes of this size. It is lightly and cheaply built, as stated vibrates a lot, and I don't know yet whether it will hold up or not, but so far I'm pleased with its lightness, at least. Also it is not noisy. It sounds a bit like a lawnmower, but it's not obtrusively loud. It has a real gearbox with reverse. It uses far less, maybe 5x less, fuel, than the old 25 horsepower two stroke. This is actually quite a big advantage as it not only saves money, but greatly reduces frequency of refueling, and going to look for where to buy fuel.
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Old 01-04-2016, 14:20   #15
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Re: Will a 2.3 HP outboard do?

I was going to comment on weight and 2 stroke vs 4 strokes, but instead will weigh in on the plane vs non planing.
In my experience if you can't plane, then HP isn't that important, by that I mean 2.3 may push you almost as fast as an 8, if the 8 won't plane, but if it will, then of course it is WAY faster.
Possibly another consideration is noise, I've heard those little motors from a long ways off, and heard them for a long time as it seem to take forever to get anywhere.
It's been 20 years ago, but I had a little 2 stroke air cooled outboard that had a centrifugal clutch, no gearbox.
I absolutely hated the thing, it sounded for all the world like a weed eater, and you couldn't talk to anyone else in the boat, I bought it because it was cheap

Any chance you could borrow a little motor to see if you would like it or not?


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