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Old 16-11-2009, 19:00   #1
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Johnson Sailmaster 7.5

We are seriously looking at a boat with an early 80's model Sailmaster 7.5 outboard. The engine is on a mount on the transom and is currently pull start. I am thinking of doing one of two things: either scrapping the old engine and getting a newer one or buying and mounting a throttle/gear shifter and key starter for the older one. I haven't had a chance to really check out the engine yet to see if it is worth hanging onto.

From what info I have I think this model engine has a starter, can anyone confirm this? Provided it does and that the engine has had normal usage and is in average condition for an engine of this vintage is it even worth hanging onto and investing money into a throttle and key start for it? If it does happen to die could I then use the throttle and ignition system on a replacement motor, ie are they interchangeable? Does anyone have an old service manual for one of these so I could learn a little more?
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Old 17-11-2009, 17:51   #2
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Okay no one wants to answer that one. Maybe someone could tell me then how much of a nuisance it is to turn around reach up over the cockpit coaming every time you want to shift gears. Doesn't this ever cause problems when you are trying to dock?
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Old 17-11-2009, 18:04   #3
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The 7.5 is a fairly old motor.

Remote throttle assemblies with the control cables and harness are typically pretty pricey... IIRC, to do this with a Yamaha 9.9 a few years ago was around a grand (new from the MFG).

You may find it is impossible or nearly so to source controls for the motor you have, and even if you do you may spend a lot of money needlessly.

I have sailed boats with the outboard in a well and remote controls. I did not like the set up at all. Reaching over the transom is something of a pain, but if you do not have too far to reach I would suggest living with the motor for a while and see if you get used to it. Obviously it is workable on some level.

If you buy a new motor it will likely be a 4 stroke. If you follow the crowd, you will 'upgrade' to a 9.9 and probably double your weight hanging off the transom. Bad all the way around.

Take your time, and see what the current set up has going for it and it's weakness. You may decide to skip the control/motor upgrade all together and install an inboard or something like one of those new e-pod electric motors. You will never get the money back out of the new outboard if you do.
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