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Old 02-11-2015, 11:56   #16
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

At 72, outboard weight is a big deal for me. And I want to be able to get it on and off the Avon 2.85 roll-up (with vinyl floor), by myself, with no davits or crane. So my principal motor is a 27 lb, 3.5 hp Tohatsu 2-stroke.

Beats rowing and is cheap to operate.
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Old 02-11-2015, 12:34   #17
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post

Unfortunately I believe ALL outboards now are electronic, even the two strokes.
Wait till Mexico or the Bahamas (depending on which coast you're doing) to buy a good reliable 2 stroke with a carburetor you can work on.
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Old 02-11-2015, 12:34   #18
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

Loads of variables, like how many people will be onboard and gear you may need to carry. 15 hp was absolute minimum in the Bahamas if you wanted to go spearfish or snorkeling. If you ever need to get a second anchor out you want more hp. We could visit other boats around the anchorages and have no concerns about getting back to our boat if the wind picked up. Motor selection varies with intended use as well your ability to safely handle the motor.
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Old 02-11-2015, 13:41   #19
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

15hp. is the perfect motor for that boat
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Old 02-11-2015, 13:45   #20
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

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After cruising Mexico with a 8' walker bay, I've decided that I need an inflatable and outboard.

I'm thinking a 10' zodiac with an aluminum floor and inflatable keel... Any thoughts???

Primary question is what hp should I get? The boat states a 10 hp max but the weight limit is 100 lbs.

The Suzuki 15 & 20 horses are 97 lbs, but I wonder if this is overkill and/or potentially squirrelie for my female counter part...

Any thoughts?
I have a Zodiac"WAVE"Its grat with a6HP8--HPtoplane offwith 2aboard
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Old 02-11-2015, 14:31   #21
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

I agree with others that weight and portability are more important than power. Years ago (2001) I bought a Nissan-branded Tohatsu 9.8 2-stroke (59 pounds) because it had the best power-weight ratio on the market. That motor still runs like a champ today -- silky smooth and quiet.


However, I have retired that motor in favor of a Suzuki DF2.5 that weighs 30 pounds. I can't plane with the Suzuki and it rotates 180 on its mount instead of a reverse gear (a rinky-dink solution) but I can lift it with one hand and it's rare that we want to get on plane in a harbor anyway.
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Old 03-11-2015, 08:35   #22
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

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I'd get a 15hp 2 stroke.
I'ld second that.
Besides, many 9.9hp/15hp are the same engine. I see someone has said not to exceed the 10hp rating. This can be ignored if buying a 15hp 2-stroke on the basis that the engine weighs the same. Many people do this without any adverse affects.
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Old 03-11-2015, 10:03   #23
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

I think you should limit yourself to something you can easily lift with one hand. There will be many times when you need to. As for horses, a 2.5 or 4 will push a 10' RIB just fine. Getting on plane is a different story. Bigger will be better if you need to tow or even heel your boat but for simple transportation anything over 10 seems like overkill to me.
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Old 03-11-2015, 10:04   #24
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

8hp two stroke. Will plane that skiff with two adults and a kid. Easy on and off and enough power to drag out a second anchor in a blow with the chain piled in the skiff as friend pays out the rode.

If you have children aboard from time to time, also get a 2.5 just for them.
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Old 03-11-2015, 13:58   #25
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

Another example of how everything's a trade off with boats. Small motors are slow & big motors are heavy. If you go big will you tow everywhere. Towing with the motor on the dinghy in heavy winds, rough seas or off shore is a real crap shoot. I've had my Avon windmill behind my boat in strong winds & land upside down. I ended up going with the 2 hp Honda because it's so light. If you go with a big motor you'll need a davit to get it off the dinghy or davits to pick both of them up.
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Old 03-11-2015, 15:31   #26
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

Its worth considering that in an emergency the dinghy outboard should be able to tow the big boat out of trouble.

On the other hand one should be able to move the outboard from one transom to the other manually.

Against that background I would buy the biggest outboard that I can lift comfortably.

So I ended up with a Mercury 4.5hp on an inflatable reliable workhorse. Almost laughable but I can handle it and use it daily.

Was I 40 years younger I prob could try a 15hp Yamaha which would be ideal!
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Old 03-11-2015, 15:44   #27
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

I have a 10.8 foot soft bottom, inflatable keel with aluminum floor.
I have a 9.9hp Evinrude 4 stroke. I just replaced a 9.8 Merc 2 stroke on same dink.

With 2 people, a full cooler and groceries it planes very quickly I get up to about 18-20 MPH. Very respectable.
I see no advantage to a 15 HP. The cost does not justify the insignificant return.
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Old 03-11-2015, 17:06   #28
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

I love my Zodiacs, although I don't think I would buy another PVC one. Hypalon is the go. It seems to resist the UV here in Oz. Terra Nova has the right idea. Do not exceed the HP rating, Zodiac know their designs & their designs are good. I always fit the maximum recommended HP because I tend to be adventurous and need power to get out of the way of breaking waves and often travel further than simply going ashore. 3m or 10ft is small IMO, however I recently purchased one that size because my current boat( an S&S34) won't let me carry a bigger one. I put a Tohatsu 9.8 on it because it is much lighter than a 4 stroke and it was a reasonable price A$2000. I have a 4.5 hypalon Zodiac with a 30hp Honda & the boat is trailer mounted. That is my tender/surf & dive boat when the 34 is on its mooring away from FSC. I have previously owned a 3.5m mk1 which is the style you described and fitted a 15hp. As I said I am adventurous and I have flipped both the 4.5 & 3.5 The larger boat was flipped in head winds about 35 knots with insufficient weight in the bow. Hindsight is great. The smaller one flipped when I was not expecting trouble. A small swell came from behind and the Zodiac was unevenly loaded and probably overloaded too. They are great boats and very capable and robust but you need to be careful. I like the style you have chosen, but they are difficult to assemble on the average mono, so I have purchased a RIB this time. A Cadet Compact. That pretty much covers my love affair with Zodiac. I am a commercial vessel master and have operated all sorts of boats. I hope it all goes well for you
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Old 08-11-2015, 03:23   #29
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

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Originally Posted by Terra Nova View Post
At 72, outboard weight is a big deal for me. And I want to be able to get it on and off the Avon 2.85 roll-up (with vinyl floor), by myself, with no davits or crane. So my principal motor is a 27 lb, 3.5 hp Tohatsu 2-stroke.

Beats rowing and is cheap to operate.
Thank goodness, someone with commonsense at last.

I can't imagine trying to mount anything larger than 3.5hp onto a wobbly dinghy in a chop. My 35' ferro (weight about 10 tons) only has a 9.9hp outboard, and it took three of us using a friend's boom as a crane to get it onto the mount.

Seriously, the rest of you guys are crazy.
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Old 08-11-2015, 04:25   #30
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Re: What Horsepower for my new dingy

Get a 10hp 2-stroke, & do "the mod". IE; swap out the key parts which'll transform it into a 15hp. That, or maybe a 10hp with a Kort Nozzle? Either way, you're still "technically" compliant with what the dink's tag says, but... it's "turboed".
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