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Old 16-10-2014, 17:28   #1
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Reliable and Light Outboard

My 55 lbs 4 HP four stroke Mercury outboard is too heavy for me to lift from the boat onto the dinghy in a chop, and is also sets the transom pretty low on the Walker Bay dinghy with inflatable tubes.

I am looking for a much lighter (~30lbs) outboard that is robust and reliable for extended cruising. Speed is not very important. Any suggestions and experiences?




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Old 16-10-2014, 17:56   #2
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

http://marine.honda.com/outboards/motor-detail/BF2.3

I don't have one and I'm not sure about the air cooled part, but it does meet your weight and Honda doesn't have a rep of making junk
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Old 16-10-2014, 17:59   #3
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

The 2 horse 2 stroke yamaha is a great motor. 22 lbs. I personally favor it over the honda or Suzuki 4 stroke.
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Old 16-10-2014, 18:18   #4
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

I've heard about the Yamaha 2 strokes. Keep looking for one without success. They are banned in the US where I'm based.


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Old 16-10-2014, 19:04   #5
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

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Originally Posted by tominny View Post
I've heard about the Yamaha 2 strokes. Keep looking for one without success. They are banned in the US where I'm based.


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Any two stroke will be much lighter. The Honda is very sensitive to fuel cleanliness and is loud and you can't check the oil in the sight gauge very easily. I use an old 2 cycle 4hp Johnson that is about 30lb.

Is it that you can't use 2 cycle or you just can't buy a new 2 cycle?
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Old 16-10-2014, 19:25   #6
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

I went with a 3.5 hp 4-stroke Tohatsu (same as Mercury and Nissan) b/c it put us one block size down from the 4 to 6 hp small outboards. Not sure what the weight is, but I can lift it off the stern and onto our portabote without too much bother. So far the engine has been perfectly reliable, and moves us well, but it is noisier than I like.

Agreed about getting a 2-stroke, but it's harder to find them now.
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Old 16-10-2014, 20:12   #7
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

We've always had good luck with the Honda's. The downside of the Honda 2.3 is it's air cooled and loud. The upside is it is air cooled. No problem with having to deal with shredded impellers or blocked cooling lines. Also because it's air cooled you can store it on your stern rail and run it once a week or so to keep the gas moving through the jets and other parts of the carburetor.
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Old 16-10-2014, 21:27   #8
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

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I've heard about the Yamaha 2 strokes. Keep looking for one without success. They are banned in the US where I'm based.
If you can wait until you get to the Bahamas you can buy 2 strokes there. They had 2hp 2 stroke yamahas, new, for $700, in Marsh Harbor. I came close to buying one but finally got my old 2 stroke yammy working.

OTOH, I have always liked those little honda 2hp 4 strokes. Love the idea of air cooling.
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Old 16-10-2014, 22:02   #9
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

Quote:
Originally Posted by tominny View Post
My 55 lbs 4 HP four stroke Mercury outboard is too heavy for me to lift from the boat onto the dinghy in a chop, and is also sets the transom pretty low on the Walker Bay dinghy with inflatable tubes.

I am looking for a much lighter (~30lbs) outboard that is robust and reliable for extended cruising. Speed is not very important. Any suggestions and experiences?
The thing is if you want a LIGHTER one then you really have only one option and that's a 2-stroker. This Yamaha 3hp "Malta" is pretty good. One slight issue is that it has internal tank only. Mine is at service and a connection for the 15 liter external tank will be added.

3AMHS Yamaha 2 Stroke 3hp Short Shaft PORTABLE OUTBOARD FOR SALE | Brisbane Yamaha

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Originally Posted by tominny View Post
I've heard about the Yamaha 2 strokes. Keep looking for one without success. They are banned in the US where I'm based.
I know they are impossible to buy now in the US but surely one can USE one if one has a one?
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Old 17-10-2014, 03:04   #10
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

Thanks for all the info and suggestions. New 2 strokes can't be bought in the US, but people operate them.
I might have to wait until Marsh Harbor then to get one and hope I they have them in stock.

The Honda 2.3 looks good but the prop looks like it is made of plastic? Good or bad?


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Old 17-10-2014, 03:41   #11
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

We have a plastic blade on our Mercury 3.3hp 2 stroke (28 pounds) and have hit a lot of crap with it. No chips or broken blade yet!

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Old 17-10-2014, 08:38   #12
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

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The thing is if you want a LIGHTER one then you really have only one option and that's a 2-stroker. This Yamaha 3hp "Malta"

I know they are impossible to buy now in the US but surely one can USE one if one has a one?
I've had my yammy 3 "malta" for many years and its pretty trouble free, but it weighs 38lbs fueled up and the OP is looking for a lighter engine. As for using a 2 stroke here in the states, no problem. You could also buy a new one foreign and bring it back aboard your own boat and no one is the wiser.
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Old 17-10-2014, 08:43   #13
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

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I might have to wait until Marsh Harbor then to get one and hope I they have them in stock.
There's a yammie dealer in marsh past the customs dock, a bit of a walk from the yachtie docks but I've done it easily. There's also a big yammie dealer in Nassau near Yacht Haven.
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Old 17-10-2014, 08:46   #14
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

If you are feeling rich you could try a Torqeedo electric motor. They are light and the various parts come apart and so are easy to lift in/out of the dingy. Expensive, but no worries about petrol on board or messy oil leaks. No maintenance to speak of. Good luck. Link is here: Torqeedo Travel 503/1003 with integrated battery for inflatables, dinghies, yachts up to 1.5 tons

I have one of these and it works! Very quiet and clean.

Good luck
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Old 17-10-2014, 09:04   #15
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Re: Reliable and light outboard

You'll have a hard time buying a 2 stroke outboard in the USA. Our beloved EPA has made sure of that!

I have a 2HP (I think the new ones are higher rated) 4 stroke Honda and it weighs about 27 pounds and works well.
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