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Old 11-09-2017, 13:40   #1
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Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

I have an option to buy a Honda BF2 which is new in box (old stock, no warranty) for a considerable discount compared with the current model BF2.3.

Other than power, fuel capacity and styling -- can anyone tell me the significant mechanical differences? I'm trying to decide whether I think it's worth the price difference for the newer model with warranty vs. "new-old" model without.
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Old 11-09-2017, 18:41   #2
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Re: Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

Tiny little motors, and if I were to go with new, I'd look hard at the little Suzuki, water cooling and I believe a real gearbox and no centrifugal clutch would be why, however if the price were right, I'd buy the Honda.
A year from now and they are both old
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Old 11-09-2017, 19:09   #3
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Re: Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

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Tiny little motors, and if I were to go with new, I'd look hard at the little Suzuki, water cooling and I believe a real gearbox and no centrifugal clutch would be why, however if the price were right, I'd buy the Honda.
A year from now and they are both old
Thanks, but I have the Suzuki 2.5 and I'm not happy with it. I think all these little motors are somewhat rinkydink, but I'm hoping the Honda might be a better choice. I don't need to plane and rarely need to go more than about a half mile in a harbor. It's more important (to me) to be able to move the motor on and off the dinghy with one hand.
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Old 11-09-2017, 19:17   #4
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Re: Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

BTW I picked up the Honda 2 tonight. $500 for a shiny new motor manufactured in 2007 that is in the box. Never had oil or gas in it.

I can use it a bit and keep the one I prefer. Can sell either without losing much money.
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Old 11-09-2017, 20:07   #5
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Re: Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

Honda 2Hp is a good little motor, thats a great price. Think the newer 2.3 has a clutch which makes getting underway easier. Do you know if yours has the clutch? My 2hp Honda doesn't, so before you start you must point in the right direction. Did you buy both models? How much were the 2.3hp. Like I need another outboard, got 4. We cruise with a 2hp Honda and a 9.8hp Nissan 2-stroke. If just going across a harbour we throw the 2.0 on, so easy very light and no gas tanks. When exploring or going further we use the 9.8. The 2hp is a loud little sucker, being air cooled. Be certain to shut gas off and run the gas out if not using for a couple days or you'll become a good carb mechanic.
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Old 11-09-2017, 20:34   #6
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Re: Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

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Honda 2Hp is a good little motor, thats a great price. Think the newer 2.3 has a clutch which makes getting underway easier. Do you know if yours has the clutch? My 2hp Honda doesn't, so before you start you must point in the right direction. Did you buy both models? How much were the 2.3hp. Like I need another outboard, got 4. We cruise with a 2hp Honda and a 9.8hp Nissan 2-stroke. If just going across a harbour we throw the 2.0 on, so easy very light and no gas tanks. When exploring or going further we use the 9.8. The 2hp is a loud little sucker, being air cooled. Be certain to shut gas off and run the gas out if not using for a couple days or you'll become a good carb mechanic.
The model I bought tonight has the centrifugal clutch. I've compared by listening to other people's Hondas, and my Suzuki 2.5 is just as loud, imho. Water cooled or not, it's crude - and not made with the precision I'd hope for in an engine.

Funny you have the Nissan 9.8 2-stroke also. I have one of those (2001 model) and will never sell it. It's the smoothest quietest outboard I've ever used, at any speed... and that includes comparing to 3 recent vintage Yamaha 4-strokes I've owned (9.8, 20, 25hp models). But even at a relatively light 58 pounds I need to use a motor crane with it, whereas the 30 pounds of a 2hp engine are quite different and easy to handle on and off the dinghy.
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Old 11-09-2017, 20:49   #7
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Re: Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

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. Be certain to shut gas off and run the gas out if not using for a couple days or you'll become a good carb mechanic.
One more thing- I try to only use TruFuel or VP 4-cycle engine fuel (ethanol free) in my 2 hp outboard engine, my snowblower, and any other small engine that has especially small carb jets (or is used only once in a while). It's expensive per gallon but adds greater reliability, and not expensive in the absolute sense because such engines don't use a large overall volume of fuel. Easier and cheaper than fixing carbs. Stable for at least 2 years, and doesn't gum up.
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Old 12-09-2017, 09:05   #8
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Re: Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

I had a clutchless Honda BF2A and found that it could idle so slowly that the lack of neutral wasn't a problem. Also very quiet at said idle.
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Old 12-09-2017, 09:09   #9
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Re: Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

I had a Honda 2.3 from new and it was an unmitigated disaster. Would only start reliably from cold and sometimes not even then. If you didn't turn off the fuel supply and run it dry and left it for more than a week, the fuel would turn waxy and clog up the carb.The problem being that it took around two minutes to run the engine dry. The centrifugal clutch was OK in theory but because you normally needed some choke to start the motor, it would roar into life sending you and the dink off across the water unless you immediately got rid of the choke, which usually meant the engine died. After a couple of years I had enough, sold it and bought an old Mariner 3.3 two stroke. Absolute delight as it has a neutral gear, and runs dry in about 15~20 seconds. Starts first time whether hot or cold. Would never go back to a small four stroke personally.
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Old 12-09-2017, 09:57   #10
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Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

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Originally Posted by SailFastTri View Post
BTW I picked up the Honda 2 tonight. $500 for a shiny new motor manufactured in 2007 that is in the box. Never had oil or gas in it.

I can use it a bit and keep the one I prefer. Can sell either without losing much money.


Good price, but as I'm considering a little motor as a back up.
What is it you don't like about the little Zuk? Has it been reliable?
No four stoke can run as smooth as a two stroke in my opinion, well they can actually but counter balance shafts add a lot to weight so I would not expect to see them in outboards.
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Old 12-09-2017, 14:46   #11
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Re: Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

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Good price, but as I'm considering a little motor as a back up.
What is it you don't like about the little Zuk? snip.
1) Kick back through the starter rope, occasionally. (Not every time). When it kicks it pulls the rope back in suddenly with a hard jerk that can hurt my fingers/hand.
2) Hard starting IF I had run the carb dry prior.... it takes a long time (perhaps 5 minutes) to get enough fuel back into the carb bowl to start the engine from cold. If I don't run the carb dry it starts in 1-3 pulls. I am using TruFuel (or VP non-ethanol fuel) so I don't need to run the carb dry prior to layup periods, and will stay with that for any brand small engine because it avoids fuel-related problems in those tiny jets.
3) The gear shift lever is on starboard side, tiller handle on port. This makes it easier to steer from port side, but when I shift in or out of neutral I need to turn my whole body around (facing the rear of the dinghy) to reach the shift lever with the left hand. This is awkward. I think it might be easier with the Honda because I would have the centrifugal clutch (no manual shifting) but at this point I haven't tried it yet.
4) Neither of these rinkydink engines have a shallow water drive setting. My solution is to use a wood block between the engine mount and drive-leg. I use a 1-foot length of 2x2" wood, drilled through for an attachment cord so it doesn't go far. Shallow drive is found on the bigger engines and it seems like such a cheap feature to cut -- especially on an engine that's built for a dinghy likely to be used in shallow water and beached.
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Old 12-09-2017, 14:57   #12
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Re: Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

I had a Honda 2HP for almost 10 years. I bought it used. I'm going to guess it was around 15-18 when I sold it. They are bombproof. Don't worry about fuel. It is more important to run the carb dry if it's going to be stored for more than a few days.

A new carb was around $90. It's almost not worth rebuilding the carb. for the cost and time as compared to slapping a new one on. I'd expect to get at least 8-10 years out of the carb if you drain the fuel for storage.

Also Sta-bil for ethenol and Startron are your friend.
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Old 13-09-2017, 06:21   #13
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Re: Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

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Tiny little motors, and if I were to go with new, I'd look hard at the little Suzuki, water cooling and I believe a real gearbox and no centrifugal clutch would be why, however if the price were right, I'd buy the Honda.
A year from now and they are both old
I second on that idea. I d have the new 2.5 Suzuki, and its just a little marvel and a great progess compared to the Honda: Water cooled, N-F transmission, less noisy, and it pushes my dinghy nicely, for a miser of gas. And always start at first pull. The only complaint: recoil cord somes times kiks back, while trying to start the motor.
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Old 13-09-2017, 06:42   #14
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Re: Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

My Clutchless HondaBF2 sometimes kicks back as well.
Noisy, but reliable.
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Old 21-09-2017, 16:48   #15
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Re: Honda BF2 vs. newer BF2.3 differences?

OK I have now tested the new BF2 on the same dinghy I've been using for my Suzuki DF2.5.

I think I'll sell the new Honda and keep the Suzuki. It's quieter, the manual gearshift allows better control, and allows me to rev the engine in neutral, which has some value when trying to keep alive a cranky cold engine.

(If anyone wants the Honda it's a 2007 manufacture date, but I bought it new in box and it had never seen oil or gas until this week.)
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