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Old 01-12-2011, 13:03   #1
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Recommend a Small Outboard for Our Tender

We have a 9' (2.75m) fibreglass tender. We want to get a small outboard for it. Any comments recommendations (for and against particular models)?

We don't want anything bigger than 5hp max, probably more like 4hp. The smaller / lighter the better. With this is mind, I'm leaning towards 2-stroke rather than 4-stroke, but could be persuaded otherwise.

I'd also prefer one with a forward and reverse gear rather than just fully pivoting.

This is not going to be used for extended journeys and we don't intend to get the little dink up on the plane. All opinions welcomed.
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Old 01-12-2011, 13:22   #2
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Re: Recommend a small outboard for our tender

I think Tohatsu builds most of the smaller 2 stroke outboards no matter which brand is on the cowling.
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Old 01-12-2011, 13:29   #3
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Re: Recommend a small outboard for our tender

I know people have varied opinions on outboard size. I know weight is always an issue but you just can't beat HP. I have a 5hp 4 stroke and a 18hp 2 stroke. I like the weight of the 5hp and it sips gas. But I don't use it nearly as much as the 18hp. I rigged up a block lifting system on my boom to raise and lower the 18hp myself. I've been caught in plenty of strong currents and the 5hp just wasn't up to the task a few times. The 18hp never had a problem. If I had thought it out more carefully I would have gone with at least an 8hp instead. Don't always think of planning and speed as a fun thing. It has great advantages in emergency situations. Think of pushing your big boat into and out of port for repairs of a failed main diesel etc.
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Old 01-12-2011, 13:35   #4
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Re: Recommend a small outboard for our tender

If you don't want to get the dink up on the plane then get the smallest, lightest two stroke that you can find.

We have a 5hp two stroke Tohastsu (20+kg) and I can still feel it cutting into my fingers as I carried it.

Most Oz outboards are Tohatsu or clones. I'd go for the 2.5hp two stroke. Still going to weigh 15+ by the time the tank is full and a few locks/extension handles are hanging off it.
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Old 01-12-2011, 13:36   #5
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Re: Recommend a small outboard for our tender

Yep, we had a 5 hp on a dinghy years ago. Wouldn't plane. Once in FNQ we watched a 6 metre croc slide into the water not so far away. Next stop we traded the 5hp on a 15!
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Old 01-12-2011, 14:21   #6
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Re: Recommend a small outboard for our tender

I have a 6hp 4 stroke Tohatsu on an 8ft. Livingston and scarey plane
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Old 01-12-2011, 14:26   #7
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Re: Recommend a small outboard for our tender

The 3.5 Tohatsu/Merc/Nissan has fwd and nutral, Spins for reverse only. The 4 hp and above has Fwd. and reverse. My wife can plane with the 3.5 on our 8.8ft rib.

I am personally done with mixing oil. PITA, Stinks
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Old 02-12-2011, 04:21   #8
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Re: Recommend a Small Outboard for Our Tender

We cruised with a 10HP johnson 2-stroke and a 2hp honda 4-stroke, and we didn't keep either motor on the dinghy when stored on the davits (due to weight). After a while, we found that we were never using the 2HP...if we didn't need the 10HP, we'd just row.
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Old 05-12-2011, 12:38   #9
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Re: Recommend a Small Outboard for Our Tender

Thank you all for your feedback. To be honest, at this stage, we aren't interested in anything bigger than 5hp.We were hoping for specific recommendations in the 3-5hp range.
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Old 05-12-2011, 12:44   #10
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Re: Recommend a Small Outboard for Our Tender

(I think it still the current) Cruising Helmsman has a test on the small outboards. I had it, but gave it away. Can't remember the result, sorry. But if you can find C/H it could be useful.
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Old 05-12-2011, 13:01   #11
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Re: Recommend a Small Outboard for Our Tender

Quote:
Originally Posted by Weyalan View Post
Thank you all for your feedback. To be honest, at this stage, we aren't interested in anything bigger than 5hp.We were hoping for specific recommendations in the 3-5hp range.
I share the enthusiasm for Tohatsu 2-strokes -- whatever the name on the housing. One advantage to the 6hp (and up) is the separate fuel tank. I've never been a big fan of filling the outboard out on the water.
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Old 05-12-2011, 13:02   #12
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Re: Recommend a Small Outboard for Our Tender

Quote:
Originally Posted by 44'cruisingcat View Post
(I think it still the current) Cruising Helmsman has a test on the small outboards. I had it, but gave it away. Can't remember the result, sorry. But if you can find C/H it could be useful.
Great, thanks. I'll see if I can track it down.
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Old 05-12-2011, 13:14   #13
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Re: Recommend a Small Outboard for Our Tender

We've had two Tohatsu two stroke outboards. One was a Nissan 9.8 hp and the other a Tohatsu 5 hp. Both were great little engines, and very reliable. The only problem I had was self-inflicted. I once used some "old" gasoline that had been mixed with oil and had been sitting for maybe three months. Tohatsu likes fresh gasoline!
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Old 06-12-2011, 00:11   #14
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Re: Recommend a Small Outboard for Our Tender

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Great, thanks. I'll see if I can track it down.
SORRY! Gave you a major bum steer! The CH issue with the tests was March 2010.

Can give you a bit of an overall summary if you like.

They say a 2 stroke is cheaper to run overall, even though it uses more fuel, because of the servicing costs of the 4 strokes. Cheaper to buy too.

The smallest and lightest is the Yamaha 2C. Weighs 9.8kg dry.

In the 2 strokes they recommend the Yam 2C, Mariner/Merc 3.3 5 and 8 and the Tohatsu 3.5, 5,8 and 9.8.
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Old 06-12-2011, 01:09   #15
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Re: Recommend a Small Outboard for Our Tender

If you aren't planning, I would always go for the LIGHTEST, ie 2 HP or whatever is the smallest these days. The actual difference between a 2 HP and say 4 HP will not be noticeable really given your intended usage but the weight differance WILL be noticable. Passing up a light outboard one handed in a choppy seaway is so much safer that passing up the heavier one two handed. But maybe you are much stronger than me .

Just depends if you can live without the forward / reverse gearbox or not.

I learned to love my various 2 HP motors.
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