It seemed to me that the OP had two primary concerns: the first that his powerful motor
scared him and maybe his wife, a bit, and therefore they were worried about the safety
of their small child in the dinghy; and the second, that the engine
is heavy to move about. He already has this motor
, and his reasons for buying
it seem sound to me.
The child will grow and become heavier (thus affecting dinghy performance). Good safety
practice will keep the child safe, and this may mean motoring slowly. Depending on where they're going to be cruising, having a competent dinghy and motor increases the safety of the mother boat, as it will be anchored where it is best protected, and explorations of some distance effected by the dinghy to get to dive and fishing
Handling the heavier motor--we have a 15 horse 2 stroke
, which weighs in the vicinity of 100 lbs.--is something we do with the main halyard
. We made a lifting harness for the motor, and snap on the halyard
, Jim fends it off the boat while I raise the motor (6 full winch
turns, as it happens), and he walks it back. We have been doing this in this way for in the vicinity of 25 yrs of cruising. When the mother boat is pitching because there's lots of breeze, it is still doable, 'cause the lift
happens at amidships, where the height of the pitch
I think the OP should keep his motor and gain more experience with it, because I think that his reasons are sound, and in tune with his character. Normally, and in most issues I tend towards minimalist thinking, but where and how you want to use a dinghy is at the crux of this argument. If all you'll ever want it for is fine weather
trips to and from shore, small is great, but if you might ever need to use your dinghy to take out an additional anchor
, after the wind
has got up, and you're swing closer than you like to some rocks, you will appreciate every single
horsepower that you can bring to bear.
Foothill sailor, it is not only Americans who like big, strong, fast dinghies. South Africans and Australians do, too. Canadians and French, not so much.