Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 11-05-2015, 13:01   #1
Registered User
 
4arch's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Baltimore
Boat: Beneteau Oceanis 400
Posts: 232
Images: 1
Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

We took delivery of a new 4 stroke 15 HP outboard last weekend, to be used on our Caribe C10 RIB. We are a family of three and plan to head south this fall. We bought into the advice to go for the maximum power, especially with the thought that inflatables only offer a comfortable, dry ride either running slow at just above idle or fast at planning speeds, but not so much at points in between. The idea of being able to use the dinghy to get the mother ship out of trouble and to make easier work out of re-provisioning when spending a two-three weeks at a time at anchor appealed a lot. I was also able to pick up the 15 HP at about the same price as a new 9.9, which sealed the deal.

Now that we have some time to sea trial the new setup, we have some doubts. First, having the power of 15 HP feels good but it’s also intimidating. It’s nice to have a motor that will get us wherever we want to go but I’m not sure we’ll feel comfortable getting up to planning speed with our small child aboard until she’s a few years older. The mere thought of hitting a submerged object at 15 knots with her aboard just makes us shudder. If we have provision chores - especially those involving jugging fuel or water - one of the adults will probably go solo and might be more willing to go fast in those situations. But day to day, taking our daughter ashore or exploring the anchorage will probably be at slower speeds.

The second problem is the motor’s weight - it’s a beast at 114 lbs. I just wonder if we will grow tired of dealing with such a bulky, heavy object on a daily basis. A 9.9 HP would be almost 35 lbs lighter and a 6 HP nearly half the weight. I also have the feeling the 15 makes the Caribe a bit stern-heavy, although that may be my imagination since it’s rated to carry a motor that heavy.

The third problem is related to the second. We don’t have davits and they aren’t in the budget. This means we’ll end up hoisting the motor on the rail quite often. We do have a motor crane mounted to a radar pole. Unfortunately the PO mounted the radar pole so that the crane’s pick point is not directly over where the motor ends up on its block. The crane works great to get the motor off and on the RIB, but getting it on and off the block on the stern rail is a challenge. There are no great options for changing this situation. If I shortened the crane arm it would be too short when swung out over the RIB. Moving the radar pole farther inboard would resolve the situation but isn’t really feasible. I can move the block on the stern rail somewhat farther outboard but not enough to make a huge difference. With a small motor it wasn’t so problematic, but with this one it’s difficult to swing into position. Probably the best thing I can do is move the crane arm higher up the radar pole, which will give me a less acute angle of attack to fight against.

With all this in mind, we’re very seriously considering trading our 15 HP in for a 6, 8, or 9.9 HP model. Should we stick with the 15 and work through the growing pains or step down to a more manageable size? (And, for reasons I don’t want to debate in this thread, we’re not willing to consider 2-stroke engines).
__________________

__________________
4arch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2015, 13:07   #2
Don't ask if you can't handle it
 
sailorboy1's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: On the boat somewhere
Boat: Hunter 410
Posts: 12,305
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

Did you check for the max HP for your dinghy before you ordered it?

I have a 6 HP on my dinghy that takes a max of 7.5 HP. It works great with 1 person in the dinghy and planes just fine. But with 2 people it only barely planes. But it is light enough for 1 person to move around and mount it (just) without any lift system. It also is light enough that for my system I can mostly leave it on the dinghy when it is on the davits.
__________________

__________________
jobless, houseless, clueless, living on a boat and cruising around somewhere
sailorboy1 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2015, 13:10   #3
Registered User
 
4arch's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Baltimore
Boat: Beneteau Oceanis 400
Posts: 232
Images: 1
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

Yes, the outboard is within the HP and weight ratings for the inflatable.
__________________
4arch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2015, 13:26   #4
Sponsoring Vendor
 
HopCar's Avatar

Community Sponsor
Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2011
Location: Miami Florida
Boat: Ellis Flybridge 28
Posts: 3,155
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

If you decide to go lighter, and still want to plane, don't go smaller than a 9.9 or you'll be unhappy. On the other hand, if you are happy going four or five miles an hour, there is no need to go bigger than five or six horsepower.


A friend of mine recently bought a 10 ft inflatable with an inflatable floor. He wants to carry it in his truck as he drives the US east coast. It is rated for 15 hp but he didn't want to carry that much weight and he didn't need to go fast. I sold him a Lehr 5.0 hp and he is very happy with it. With the two of us aboard (we're both big guys) the boat performed well at displacement speeds. It would sort of plane with him alone in the boat but he had a real hard time getting it there.
__________________
Hopkins-Carter Marine Supplies & Fishing Tackle
What You Need, at the Price You Want...with Service!
HopCar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2015, 13:31   #5
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 4,915
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

4 strokes are heavy for sure. Many cruisers that are away from the USA use 2 strokes, much lighter. We have a 15 and would not change
__________________
robert sailor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2015, 13:52   #6
Registered User
 
FatBear's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2008
Boat: Maas Aero, 21.5
Posts: 50
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

1. You'll get used to it and like the power after a while. Hauling more weight (as the kids grow or you take large loads of supplies and water) requires more HP to go other than dead slow.

The likelyhood that you will need the 15HP to move your bigger boat is small, but if you do need it, it will probably be barely enough. 15HP is adequate for an inboard in a heavy sailboat, but the outboard on your inflatable is not matched to the load. A friend was towing my 30HP inflatable behind his heavy 39' cruising boat on a very narrow, twisty river when the engine died. Sailing was not an option, so he tug-boated over 20 miles to his moorage. He tied the inflatable alongside, put some duct tape on the throttle, climbed back into the big boat and steered. It didn't go fast, but it did the job and saved him an expensive tow. This, of course, was not a life-threatening situation, but the boat did help him out of a jamb.

You can make the boat plane at the same speeds with the 15HP as with the 9.9. But you cannot make the 9.9 go as fast or pull as hard as the 15.

You usually use full throttle to pop up on plane, but you don't need to plane at full throttle. In fact, it's wasteful and hard on your motor to do so. Once you're up, throttle back to a more comfortable planing speed. You'll need to adjust this speed according to conditions, too. Fast planing in heavy chop is brutal and heavy chop plus wakes at full throttle probably is dangerous. Fast planing on glassy water is almost mesmerizing.

Hitting a submerged object with the motor will cause it to swing up, hopefully with little or no damage. Hitting a submerged object with the boat will at least be safer than doing so in a non-inflatable dinghy.

2. I hate the weight of modern outboards. That lift will help a lot, but what happens in the rare occasion that you cannot use it? I used to work on a tug boat in the Aleutians. We had a Sears 18' skiff and an ancient 18HP Evinrude. One guy could get in the boat, another could lean over the rail and hand down the motor, the first could set it on the transom and screw it down, all without significant effort. We've done it in 12' seas, though not larger than that. We were young and strong, but I cannot imagine doing that with 114 pounds!

3. You can hang 114 pounds from your railing, but that takes 114 pounds of strength away that you might need some stormy night. So I hope the railing is adequate.

I don't know exactly what your crane arm looks like. If it is a rigid davit type, you're out of luck. If it is a boom that can swing up and down as well as side to side, then you might just need to reposition the upper block so that you can raise it higher. As the arm goes up, the reach will shorten and the motor will come closer to the radar pole. Then you might be able to swing it over and position it above the mounting bracket on your rail.
__________________
--FatBear
FatBear is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2015, 14:15   #7
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Penobscot Bay, Maine
Boat: Tayana 47
Posts: 990
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

Quote:
Originally Posted by FatBear View Post
1. You'll get used to it and like the power after a while. Hauling more weight (as the kids grow or you take large loads of supplies and water) requires more HP to go other than dead slow.

The likelyhood that you will need the 15HP to move your bigger boat is small, but if you do need it, it will probably be barely enough. 15HP is adequate for an inboard in a heavy sailboat, but the outboard on your inflatable is not matched to the load. A friend was towing my 30HP inflatable behind his heavy 39' cruising boat on a very narrow, twisty river when the engine died. Sailing was not an option, so he tug-boated over 20 miles to his moorage. He tied the inflatable alongside, put some duct tape on the throttle, climbed back into the big boat and steered. It didn't go fast, but it did the job and saved him an expensive tow. This, of course, was not a life-threatening situation, but the boat did help him out of a jamb.

You can make the boat plane at the same speeds with the 15HP as with the 9.9. But you cannot make the 9.9 go as fast or pull as hard as the 15.

You usually use full throttle to pop up on plane, but you don't need to plane at full throttle. In fact, it's wasteful and hard on your motor to do so. Once you're up, throttle back to a more comfortable planing speed. You'll need to adjust this speed according to conditions, too. Fast planing in heavy chop is brutal and heavy chop plus wakes at full throttle probably is dangerous. Fast planing on glassy water is almost mesmerizing.

Hitting a submerged object with the motor will cause it to swing up, hopefully with little or no damage. Hitting a submerged object with the boat will at least be safer than doing so in a non-inflatable dinghy.

2. I hate the weight of modern outboards. That lift will help a lot, but what happens in the rare occasion that you cannot use it? I used to work on a tug boat in the Aleutians. We had a Sears 18' skiff and an ancient 18HP Evinrude. One guy could get in the boat, another could lean over the rail and hand down the motor, the first could set it on the transom and screw it down, all without significant effort. We've done it in 12' seas, though not larger than that. We were young and strong, but I cannot imagine doing that with 114 pounds!

3. You can hang 114 pounds from your railing, but that takes 114 pounds of strength away that you might need some stormy night. So I hope the railing is adequate.

I don't know exactly what your crane arm looks like. If it is a rigid davit type, you're out of luck. If it is a boom that can swing up and down as well as side to side, then you might just need to reposition the upper block so that you can raise it higher. As the arm goes up, the reach will shorten and the motor will come closer to the radar pole. Then you might be able to swing it over and position it above the mounting bracket on your rail.
I think you've got the appropriate motor for your sized dinghy but I guess only you can decide whether what I see as the only downside of wrestling it onto the rail is manageable or not. With the motor still attached to the arm, can a second person guide it into place? I spent years with a 4 stroke Yamaha on a 10' Avon RIB and thought it was just right. Now, with a larger family and dog to carry, I have an 11' Achilles with a 20hp electric start 4 stroke, 124lbs. NO, I will NOT be wrestling it onto any rails any more than necessary!

Probably the only real long term solution for you is to eventually get davits so you don't have to remove it very often. Lifting that heavy motor around in wavy conditions can easily knock you off balance so it's a good thing you have the hoist to rely on in case you have to let go. But if I were you I'd probably try real hard to keep it and make any necessary adjustments. How about a second tackle hanging from part of the way out the lifting arm so that once you lift the motor off the dinghy and up to about the level of the rail, you could attach the second tackle to the motors harness and take up the weight on it and then release the primary lifting tackle as you steadied the motor to keep it from swinging. That would allow you to then lower it directly onto your rail. Good luck!
__________________
jtsailjt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2015, 06:06   #8
Registered User
 
ranger42c's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Maryland, USA
Boat: 42' Sportfish
Posts: 2,981
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

arch, what kind of cruising will you do? That might affect how often you need to man-handle the motor? If you're able to tow most of the time, excepting crossings and so forth, maybe it's less of a problem?


FWIW, I suspect I'd try to grow into it, maybe improve the lifting capability somehow... gradually, over time, if necessary...


-Chris
__________________
Selby Bay, South River, Chesapeake Bay, USA.
ranger42c is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2015, 06:37   #9
Registered User
 
bobnlesley's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Yorkshire/Back down in da islans Mon
Boat: Trident Challenger- 35 feet
Posts: 369
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

...problem is the motor’s weight...


You pays you money and takes your choice: When we started sailing we had a dink, but no outboard, so visited the local outboard store and walked along the rack getting Lesley to lift them off/on their display stands; we selected a 3.3 Mercury on the basis that that was the most powerful she could easily manhandle (should that be womanhandle?)


When we decided to cruising we then considered a bigger motor, but in the end listened to three circumnavigators who'd done their loops with similarly sized outboards; the big/fast outboard thing seems to be much more a North American, rather than European requirement?


With the tiny outboard we never get our rib planning that's for sure, but it's easy to get on/off/stowed, is light enough that we can haul both dink and outboard up a beach or onto a dock and in more than ten years cruising, I can think of only three or four occasions when we might've gone ashore with a more powerful motor. Yes it's slower, but the reality in most instances is that your trip to shore might take two to five minutes longer.
__________________
bobnlesley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2015, 07:15   #10
Don't ask if you can't handle it
 
sailorboy1's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: On the boat somewhere
Boat: Hunter 410
Posts: 12,305
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

I think if you have the space that it makes a lot of sense to have 2 outboards, a small one to use most of the time and a large one for those times needing the power.
__________________
jobless, houseless, clueless, living on a boat and cruising around somewhere
sailorboy1 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2015, 08:02   #11
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Penobscot Bay, Maine
Boat: Tayana 47
Posts: 990
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

Quote:
Originally Posted by bobnlesley View Post


When we decided to cruising we then considered a bigger motor, but in the end listened to three circumnavigators who'd done their loops with similarly sized outboards; the big/fast outboard thing seems to be much more a North American, rather than European requirement?


With the tiny outboard we never get our rib planning that's for sure, but it's easy to get on/off/stowed, is light enough that we can haul both dink and outboard up a beach or onto a dock and in more than ten years cruising, I can think of only three or four occasions when we might've gone ashore with a more powerful motor. Yes it's slower, but the reality in most instances is that your trip to shore might take two to five minutes longer.
I think you're right that it's not so much a European, or even a northeast US requirement to have a planing dinghy because in Europe or New England boats are usually kept in harbors that have no wake zones that prohibit planing anyway, or in a slip where they really don't need ANY dinghy for all the time they are there, but I spend a lot of time anchoring out and sometimes I like to use the RIB for more than just going ashore in the local harbor, or exploring up a river, and cruising the Bahamas in a 6' draft boat often means anchoring a lot further from shore than is common in Europe or New England.

But the weight of a 15+ hp outboard can be a PIA and is close to useless if you don't think you'll ever have to anchor almost a mile from shore, or decide to zip 10 miles up a river to visit a location you couldn't get to otherwise or to pick up a part you need for repairs that's located in the next town down the coast. But more than once, I've found myself doing all of those things.

Twenty or thirty years ago, a yachts tender was used more just to row out to go for a sail and back again at night. But now, with larger and much more stable and seaworthy RIB's commonplace, a yachts tender has evolved into a combination pickup truck. toy, and auxiliary to the mother ship, capable of much more than just shuttling you back and forth to your mooring. A "go fast" dinghy can be a pretty nice option to have, especially once you get outside harbors with speed limits and no wake zones.
__________________
jtsailjt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2015, 08:14   #12
Registered User
 
zboss's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: On a boat
Boat: Cabo Rico 38
Posts: 3,425
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

We have a 9.9 4 stroke that planes and we end up going slow more than 50% of the time anyhow because we are usually in no hurry to get where we need to be! On the other hand, we are able to get quickly to places that are miles away when we want to.

4arch - If you are going to the Bahamas then just wait until you get here and buy a 15 HP two-stroke. Be sure to bring cash because they don't accept CC for them. About $2700. Also, they don't take trade-ins so you would be on your own to sell your old one.
__________________
zboss is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2015, 08:30   #13
Registered User
 
4arch's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Baltimore
Boat: Beneteau Oceanis 400
Posts: 232
Images: 1
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

Quote:
Originally Posted by zboss View Post
4arch - If you are going to the Bahamas then just wait until you get here and buy a 15 HP two-stroke. Be sure to bring cash because they don't accept CC for them. About $2700. Also, they don't take trade-ins so you would be on your own to sell your old one.
Problem is the old OB was toast and has already been given away. So I need an outboard now. I'm considering selling the 4 stroke 15 and buying a small 4 stroke (4 HP?) that will get us through til we hit the Bahamas where we can then see if we want the speed/power of a 15 HP 2 stroke. Of course, we will probably end up losing money at each transaction, just to save ~35 lbs.
__________________
4arch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2015, 09:23   #14
Registered User

Join Date: May 2008
Location: daytona beach florida
Boat: csy 37
Posts: 2,844
Images: 1
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

Get the 4hp. In all my travels in the Bahamas the biggest o/b I've had was a 3.5hp. On hard dinks, soft bottom inflatables, and a rib. There were only a few times I thought I might want more. And a thousand times I was glad I had less. A 4hp Yamaha 2 stroke is $1200 in the Bahamas.

Remember that you are cruising. Slow down.
__________________
Take two at low eight
onestepcsy37 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2015, 09:30   #15
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: West slope Colorado
Boat: Celestial 48 ketch
Posts: 16
Re: Outboard Too Large - Buyer’s Remorse

Had a 15hp Yamaha 4 stroke for 5 years and fought the weight thing continuously. Especially pulling it up on a beach, which we did daily twice with the dog. Corrosion problems resulted in a change, and we switched to a 15 hp 2-stroke, 35 lbs lighter. So much easier to handle all around, and we still have the speed when we need. And I have gotten on plane with 4 adults aboard with our Walker Bay RIB. Have gotten use to mixing gas and oil and it's no big deal. The 4 stroke 15's are just too heavy for comfortable use with a 10 ft dinghy. I would recommend a 15 2 stroke over a 9.9 four stroke, for the power, speed, and simplicity.


Vieques- cruiser crime 2015?
__________________

__________________
secondhand Rose is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
outboard

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Has Cruising Become Too Artificial, Too Expensive, Too Regulated ? Piney Our Community 66 26-07-2017 20:01
Buyer's Remorse - What was your experience ? 12BCruzn Dollars & Cents 42 10-05-2015 22:59
Outboard Remorse unbusted67 Engines and Propulsion Systems 27 16-05-2010 21:08
Transducer Plug is Too Large! Bright Eyes Marine Electronics 15 24-03-2010 18:47
Is 170 too Large to Furl? pogo Deck hardware: Rigging, Sails & Hoisting 7 16-07-2009 15:30



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:07.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.