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Old 18-04-2010, 21:39   #46
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Our Mercury outboard is a 4 stroke and is made by Yamaha....
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Don't think so.

Small Mercs made by Tohatsu, not Yamaha.
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Old 18-04-2010, 23:26   #47
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Our club uses an 8hp Nissan 2 stroke on our safety boat. Best little engine I've had the pleasure of using.
I have a little 4hp Johnson made in Belgium. It too is very reliable. I don't know the vintage of either of those but I'm certain the Nissan is not made by the same folks that make the modern Mercury.
My Seagulls never failed me (I've had two) even after being submerged. Just needed extra maintenance. I wouldn't own another though.
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Old 19-04-2010, 06:00   #48
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Originally Posted by Island Mike View Post
Our Mercury outboard is a 4 stroke and is made by Yamaha....
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Originally Posted by CSY Man View Post
Don't think so.
Small Mercs made by Tohatsu, not Yamaha.
Mercury four strokes from 2.5 through 30 HP were built by Tohatsu.

Before Yamaha entered the U.S. market, Mercury's Mariner line was built by Yamaha.

In 2005,Mercury four stroke powerheads from 25 through 225 HP (except the Verados) were built by Yamaha. Several of those models used Mercury drive legs, electronics and EFI systems (replacing carbs Yamaha used in similar sized engines).

In 2006 models, Mercury four stroke powerheads from 40 to 225 HP (except the Verados) were built by Yamaha.

Mercury's agreement with Yamaha ended in March 2006
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Old 19-04-2010, 06:10   #49
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FWIW:

J.D. Power and Associates Reports - February, 2008:
Mercury, PCM, Yamaha and Volvo Penta Rank Highest in Marine Engine Customer Satisfaction

... Outboard DI two-stroke segment
Mercury leads in the outboard DI two-stroke segment for a third consecutive year, with slight improvements in engine quality since the 2007 study. Evinrude closely follows Mercury in the segment.

Transmission issues and stalling are the most frequently reported problems within the outboard DI two-stroke segment. However, two owner-reported problems, major engine failure and engine runs rough, have the most negative impact on overall satisfaction. Only 4 percent of owners experience either of these two problems.

Outboard EFI four-stroke segment

Yamaha ranks highest in the outboard EFI four-stroke segment, performing particularly well in engine reliability. Yamaha is followed closely by Honda and Suzuki, respectively.

Among all outboard technologies, four-stroke EFI engines have a particularly low number of reported problems (56 PP100). Among those owners who experience problems, those involving engine transmission are the most frequently reported ...

More ➥ J.D.Power and Associates - Press Release
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Old 19-04-2010, 09:32   #50
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Before Yamaha entered the U.S. market, Mercury's Mariner line was built by Yamaha.
Must have been a long time ago, I bought a Yamaha 2 HP in 1987 in the US Virgin Islands....
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Old 19-04-2010, 10:18   #51
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This is the problem with the Internet era, or it is more of a problem at least than it was when things got around by word of mouth. Less than one percent of outboard purchasers have a major, though often preventable mechanical failure, and they run to a message board like this one. They post their problem and it grows legs and infects the forum, now everyone is blaming the manufacturer for building a shoddy product and it scares every person that reads it.

For every bad experience, there are literally hundreds of good experiences you often never hear about. And it doesn't stop at outboard motors, it happens with everything.

Do any of you agree with me on this?
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Old 19-04-2010, 10:48   #52
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Originally Posted by Fiveslide View Post
This is the problem with the Internet era, or it is more of a problem at least than it was when things got around by word of mouth. Less than one percent of outboard purchasers have a major, though often preventable mechanical failure, and they run to a message board like this one. They post their problem and it grows legs and infects the forum, now everyone is blaming the manufacturer for building a shoddy product and it scares every person that reads it.

For every bad experience, there are literally hundreds of good experiences you often never hear about. And it doesn't stop at outboard motors, it happens with everything.

Do any of you agree with me on this?
I do but I also think that if you are a smart and discerning person you can weed your way through that stuff and come up with some good info. It is like writing a paper in college, you would never want to glean all of your info from wikipedia but that reference serves it's purpose.

For example in this thread amongst a few horror stories a pattern has emerged. Yamaha is generally regarded (and I say generally) as one of the better outboards while Seagull is generally regarded as one of the worst, Mercury is probably a fine outboard but has a somewhat of bad rep and everything else is in between and probably will get you from a to b due to the fact that outboards area simple piece of machinery. Would you agree that that is a fairly accurate synopsis of this thread?
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Old 19-04-2010, 11:00   #53
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As a former outboard dealer here are my thoughts All the major manufactors make good products Most motors are killed rather then break.. Fuel is the biggest issue. second is lack of maintence I would own any of the major builders motors.. I have a merc for my dinghy
Suzuki was the best to deal with if there was a problem Johnson was the worst A friend of mine is a yahama dealer they are hard to deal with and will not admit when they have a problem
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Old 19-04-2010, 11:27   #54
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Would you agree that that is a fairly accurate synopsis of this thread?

After re-reading the entire thread... Absolutely. The Merc bashing on the first page was kinda what set that post off. But that slacked off for the most part and even got some Merc supporters.

I think the better, more realistic question would be what are the key elements in keeping an outboard in top mechanical condition?

Here is my list...

1) Knowing how to diagnose and repair it yourself. That's a big money/stress saver.

That's about it.
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Old 19-04-2010, 12:06   #55
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2.) fuel, fogging and keeping up on the oil schedule, spark plugs, kind of the same as other motors. I find that a big problem with a lot of outboards is that people leave them sitting for a while and the carb gets gummed up.
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Old 19-04-2010, 14:02   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fiveslide View Post
For every bad experience, there are literally hundreds of good experiences you often never hear about. And it doesn't stop at outboard motors, it happens with everything.
Do any of you agree with me on this?
Fiveslide,
1) Yes, I agree with you....but, in my opinion, this thread has been fairly well balanced.....
As unbusted wrote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by unbusted67;
I also think that if you are a smart and discerning person you can weed your way through that stuff and come up with some good info. It is like writing a paper in college, you would never want to glean all of your info from wikipedia but that reference serves it's purpose.

For example in this thread amongst a few horror stories a pattern has emerged. Yamaha is generally regarded (and I say generally) as one of the better outboards while Seagull is generally regarded as one of the worst, Mercury is probably a fine outboard but has a somewhat of bad rep and everything else is in between and probably will get you from a to b due to the fact that outboards area simple piece of machinery.

2) And, Fiveslide, As for your ultimate question.....
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fiveslide View Post
I think the better, more realistic question would be what are the key elements in keeping an outboard in top mechanical condition
In regards to a 2-stroke Yamaha (such as my 15-hp), you just put gas in the tank, squeeze the fuel-line bulb if it's been sitting for a week, and pull the cord once.....and that's it.....
No worries at all.....and I just got around to changing the plugs a few months ago, with 5 years on them....still going strong.....

As for others....
Well, read the whole thread and you'll see....


3) Oh, and BTW, in my opinion, if you've posted this
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fiveslide View Post
Less than one percent of outboard purchasers have a major, though often preventable mechanical failure
, you've probably never experienced the horror of owning a 1970's vintage Chrysler outboard motor.....since their "failure rate" was closer to that of the British Seagull (nearly 100%), but repairs / rebuilds weren't an easy one morning project....


Fair winds....

John
s/v Annie Laurie
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Old 19-04-2010, 14:31   #57
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Avoid YAMAHA 4 hp

Avoid Yamaha 4 hp... all the rubber rings deteriorated on the shaft in one year moderate use... cost to fix it was $540... motor new was not much more than that. Yamaha Canada customer complaint just told me effectively too bad... too late for warranty. The rest of the motor is as piece of plastic crap... dainty even... not suited for small dingy use...perhaps ok for a farm pond
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Old 19-04-2010, 14:50   #58
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To Ka4wja...

LOL, You're right, I've never experienced that horror. And if any of you other posters are still using this engine it is certainly time for an upgrade! But most of us are using outboards that aren't 30+ years old and most of them are reliable enough when cared for properly and not abused, no matter what the brand.

The OP asked who is the best/worst manufacturer. I assume he meant at this time, and I seriously think it's like comparing apples and apples when you're talking about the modern day, big name outboards in regards to reliability. I've never owned a Yamaha. I defended my mercs, which I do have good experiences with.

I was just pointing out the fact that thousands and thousands of each of these outboards have been sold. When thousands of these owners start complaining... that's an entirely different matter.
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Old 19-04-2010, 15:02   #59
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that old Chrysler still breaks my heart.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ka4wja View Post
3) Oh, and BTW, in my opinion, if you've posted this , you've probably never experienced the horror of owning a 1970's vintage Chrysler outboard motor.....since their "failure rate" was closer to that of the British Seagull (nearly 100%), but repairs / rebuilds weren't an easy one morning project....
My 1970's Chrysler was not only the first outboard I ever bought new, but also the first one that could be shifted into neutral. Prior to that I'd had a 1950's-era Mercury 10hp "Screaming Mimi" that was designed always to be in gear. If you wanted to go you pulled the start cord, and if you wanted to stop you pushed the kill switch. SOP was to pull the plugs, clean them and gap them after every day out on the water, and to rebuild the carb after about 15 hrs of operation. Didn't take any longer to rebuild the carb than it took to clean the plugs.

Trading in that 20-year-old Merc for a shiny new 15hp Chrysler was the worst boating deal of my life. But that Chrysler not only had neutral, it had reverse, and I'd convinced myself that I couldn't live without it. What nobody told me at the time was that with a Chrysler, you should never motor outbound any further than you were willing to row home. I learned that lesson the hard way.
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Old 19-04-2010, 15:27   #60
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Originally Posted by Fiveslide View Post
The OP asked who is the best/worst manufacturer. I assume he meant at this time, and I seriously think it's like comparing apples and apples when you're talking about the modern day, big name outboards in regards to reliability.
Yep, I assumed the same thing....and that's how I answered his question, along with the historical prospective.....
Quote:
Originally Posted by ka4wja
unbusted,
Here are my personal, real world experiences.....

1) For current / recent outboards (those that I've owned / used in the past 5 - 10 years.....and those that you're liable to buy, whether new or used), the answer is:

Best = Yamaha.....no question about it....(especially their 2-strokes, with the 100:1 oil mix....)

Worst = Everything else ....
Seriously, the worst of the current crop seems to be...
a) any 4-stroke used with ethynol-enhanced gasoline......and...
b) Mercury


2) Historically (those that I've had experience with over the past ~40 years....), the answer is:

Best = Old Evinrude's......they were great!!!!
Worst = Chrysler's.....oh, gawd, how truly horrible they were......

Back in the 60's and 70's, I had experience with both of these brands.....
My parents were aquaintances with Frances Langford and Ralph Evinrude, and while we didn't get any free outboards, we usually had Evinrude's for the dinghy, and they worked well.....
But, back in the early 70's ('71 or '72) I became intimately aquainted with a demon that lived on the transom of the dinghy, and it was a Chysler outboard....I think it was white, with beige or gold trim.....what a horrific beast that was!!!! and it get my vote for worst outboard ever made!!!
Fiveslide, perhaps we actually agree on all of this, but are just coming at it from a different angle???? using different words????

In any case, the above are my personal experiences, and since others have had better experiences with Mercs, maybe we should qualify the data better???

2-stroke vs. 4-stroke.....
15-hp or less vs. the BIG boys.....
Carbs vs. Injection....
The list goes on and on.....but, I have no interest (no time) to delve deeper into this.....

I'm not an outboard mechanic, and never wish to be one, so my personal experiences and recommendations might be different than someone elses....
And, that doesn't mean that either one is more valid than the other, just that they are based on different experiences and applications.....
Like life, everyone's is different!!!


Wishing you all fair winds and happy outboarding!!!

John
s/v Annie Laurie
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