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Old 04-12-2016, 05:59   #16
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Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

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Originally Posted by ET12 View Post
What's the average HP outboard for a 30ft and under?

What is the lowest and highest HP outboard in general?


Thanks.
I use a 2011 Mercury 5 hp 4 stroke 25" extra long shaft outboard on my Bristol 27 which is a 6600 lb displacement full keel sailboat used for coastal cruising where the Atlantic Ocean meets the Chesapeake Bay

I only motor or motor sail when necessary as in when I need to get back from a vacation or weekend sail, leaving the marina, etc

My motor doesn't have an alternator. I have a 100 watt solar panel supplying power to my two 12 volt batteries in parallel through a $12.00 controller. These power my lights, GPS, VHF, Depth, AC Inverters, AC Fan, computer, jet pack, etc. I also have two more 20 watt panels that I haven't hooked up yet because I haven't needed them

I have an ice box and not a refrigerator.

I believe James Baldwin, Atom Voyages, used a 4-6 hp outboard on one of his circumnavigations on his Triton 28. He also did most of a circumnavigation without an engine after an outboard was stolen

Atom Voyages - Good Old Boats List

More good advice from the Atom Voyages website:

A final word of advice to the novice sailor - resist the temptation to undertake a major refit and extensive modifications on your new old boat right at the start. It's best to make only the obvious repairs needed and go out and sail locally and on some coastal vacation passages to learn exactly what is and what is not needed for you. Otherwise you may end up spending years and many thousands of dollars more than expected modifying your boat and then find out on your first ocean crossing that the boat is not right for you or those great ideas you had during the refurbishment did not work out that well at sea.
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Old 04-12-2016, 05:59   #17
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Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

A friend of mine set off from the Chesapeake Bay, headed for Maine, in a 24' sloop with an outboard engine. After leaving Cape May, he found himself in a stiff on-shore wind off the coast of southern New Jersey. The waves were steep and short-period, making the boat hobby horse. The outboard spent so much time out of the water, he couldn't make way against the strong wind and waves, and was washed up onto the beach.

To me, this is the biggest downside of an outboard. I've been caught off a lee shore in a sudden wind increase up to 35-40 knots, and once to 55 knots. My 56 hp Yanmar kept me safe.
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Old 04-12-2016, 06:11   #18
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Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

If you do choose an outboard, there are other choices than gas - Lehr makes propane fueled motors. No gas fumes, very efficient, environmentally friendly, and uses the same gas as your stove. I have the little 2.5 hp for my dinghy and like it a lot. And the exhaust smells good!
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Old 04-12-2016, 06:21   #19
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Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

If you get into any kind of weather you had better hope your outboard is far enough down in the water to keep it wet. Because when you sea saw over the waves it will over rev then bog down. Over rev then bog down. I currently have this setup. My next boat will absolutely have an inboard diesel hands down. However if you only sail on sunny days and dont stray to far for the marina. An outboard is ideal. It also give you better steerability in reverse as you can direct the transom where you want it to go with the tiller
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Old 04-12-2016, 06:38   #20
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Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

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If you get into any kind of weather you had better hope your outboard is far enough down in the water to keep it wet. Because when you sea saw over the waves it will over rev then bog down. Over rev then bog down. I currently have this setup. My next boat will absolutely have an inboard diesel hands down. However if you only sail on sunny days and dont stray to far for the marina. An outboard is ideal. It also give you better steerability in reverse as you can direct the transom where you want it to go with the tiller
I have this problem at times also. (with my outboard)

You just have to deal with it. Sail through it or go back in and wait out the wind. I have seen on several occasions my depth finder hit zero when trying to sail my way off a lee shore in 4'-6' steep waves and running tide

A couple times I barely made it. I'm dealing with bay waves riding on ocean waves on my return trips at times.

Another time, I tried to sail home against 22 plus knot winds and tide. After and hour and a half and making about a mile toward my destination which was over 20 miles ahead, I returned to my "sheltered?" anchorage and waited another day

With an outboard on a full keel cruising boat with short water line you have to plan ahead as far as wind, waves, and tide when near shore.......which means sometimes you'll have to wait it out at the marina or well offshore

The above is one of the reasons I bought a good old boat in excellent shape for $2,000. I now have about $8,000 in it with 2nd old diesel which failed, new outboard, new mainsail, bottom jobs, topside hull painting, solar, controller, inverters, batteries, etc.

It's my first monohull. I had only beachcats (4) before owning this boat which is slow and will not point anywhere near the way my beachcats would, but my beachcats couldn't come close to handling the conditions due to waves and wind that this boat can

So if I did destroy it, it wouldn't be that catastrophic. My biggest problem then would be what to buy next.......
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Old 04-12-2016, 07:12   #21
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Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

And my outboard will go down quite a ways with the bracket all the way down
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Old 04-12-2016, 07:13   #22
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Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

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My 31', ten-ton, full keel cutter has an 8HP High-thrust, long shaft four stroke outboard. Having sailed it from California to Newfoundland and points in between, I can highly recommend that arrangement. One of the worst things of an inboard is that there is a big, noisy, gasping monster IN YOUR BOAT. Unless a boat is over 36 feet, there's no excuse for cluttering it up with inboard engines. I thought at first that I would use the outboard only occasionally, for the last gasp into a harbor, but I've used it much as many people use the inboard, though I hope I've sailed more.
There is one disadvantage, and that is that in a seaway, the prop comes out of the water at times, with a most disturbing sound. Also, if in a big following sea, water can engulf the engine head, cutting off the air supply and making it gasp. But in those scenarios you're usually sailing, and the engine is not in play.
As for electricity, it is a needless luxury. Tear away from the tyranny of batteries and be free! You can read about our inboard-less and non-electric boat and voyage on our blog: zartmancruising.com
PS for Blue Water sailing, unless you're a slave to electricity, the engine stays off or days and days on end--on long passages, it's real usefulness in simply for the last gasp into harbor.
Ben

Cool website! We replaced our diesel on our 6 ton 30 footer with a 6hp high trust extra long shaft. It pushes us 5 kts at 3/4 throttle. Would not go back to such a monstrously large, heavy and complicated AUXILIARY system on such a small sailboat.

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Old 04-12-2016, 07:46   #23
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Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

One other advantage of outboard in a small boat is how helpful it is when you run aground, or for other reasons need to turn without speed.


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Old 04-12-2016, 07:57   #24
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Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

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One other advantage of outboard in a small boat is how helpful it is when you run aground, or for other reasons need to turn without speed.

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Yep, they are awesome for docking an old full keeler. Mine will rotate passed 90 degrees in either direction

Also, sometimes like in Winter or for servicing, I'll take my outboard off the stern bracket and put it on the stern rail where the PO had the mount for his dinghy outboard. My 5 hp 4 stroke weighs 58 lbs so I can do this buy hand
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:20   #25
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Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

You can work on it inside your boat if you're an anorexic contortionist!
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:26   #26
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Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

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We removed a perfectly good inboard diesel in favor of a 6hp outboard. We would not hesitate to do it again. The key to making the decision is knowing your personal cruising style and understanding the limitations and attributes of both engines. Although not typical, there are plenty of sailors crossing oceans with outboards mounted on the transom.

Brian
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When I bought my Kaiser 26 the engine had already been removed and replaced with an 8hp Suzuki that served double duty on the tender. The space where the dirty old engine used to live was the perfect place for a large cooler and behind it, where the fuel tank had been was extra storage for spare sails I rarely used.
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:32   #27
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Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

In addition to the safety and power issues, you need to think about the design of the transom and how deeply submerged the propeller will be. In the 1970s I cruised the Chesapeake Bay in a Catalina 27 with an Evinrude 9.9 longshank outboard. Most of the time it worked well, but in storm conditions with short chop, the prop would be out of the water as the boat came over the top of a wave, so powering into the waves was impossible.
If you can afford it, there's really no comparison between an inboard diesel and a gasoline outboard, the diesel wins on all performance and safety levels.

Good luck
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:35   #28
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inboard vs. outboard for cruising

Quote:
Originally Posted by ET12 View Post
What's the average HP outboard for a 30ft and under?

What is the lowest and highest HP outboard in general?


Thanks.

Depends on boat size. For a 30' 9.9hp or a bit less.
I have a 20' boat and I'm waffling back and forth between 2.5hp & 4hp.

2.5hp for slightly better fuel economy, easier moving from motorwell to lazaette, much easier to put on dinghy and a better original purchase cost.
4hp for ability to use external tank, optional alternator (redundant charging source) and slightly higher top speed.

Top speed is not that important to me but redundancy is and not having to spill fuel everywhere every hour or so strikes me as a good thing so I'm probably going with 4hp but will agonize about it until I cut the check.
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:44   #29
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Thumbs up Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

The type of cruising and your personal needs will determine in or out! I respect all choices, but for me, now living on the hook East Africa sinçe 2007, the redundancy argument of having two diesel inboards geats all arguments easy! I have 34 foot dat with spacious engine compartments woth access from cockpit, absolute necessary to stress that. To liveaboard cruise in cruising zone far from any chandker, marina... you have to delend on number one yourself. If an inboard packs up fir whatever reason Insimply yse the other one until get access to parts! I have 5hp and 15hp two stroke light weight outboards for 14 foot alu dinghy, again if I travel far in my dinghy if one outboard packs up got 2nd one on board if dinghy. The 5hp ofcourse is very economic and is used most in nirmal tudal current and wind, sea state! The 15 hp can be third motor cat, imagine both inboards give up, don't exclude it condensation in diesel tanks difficult to control, dirty diesel same! I absolutely abhor keeping gasoline on yacht but unavoidable fir outboards, I organized gasoline locker which ventilates in its bottom between cat hulls, also use proper jerrycans. Electricity is lyxury but imagine depending on outside power to charge batteries, refrigerate.... solar helps to charge batteries as do inboards!
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:46   #30
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Re: inboard vs. outboard for cruising

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Originally Posted by JOHNMARDALL View Post
In addition to the safety and power issues, you need to think about the design of the transom and how deeply submerged the propeller will be. In the 1970s I cruised the Chesapeake Bay in a Catalina 27 with an Evinrude 9.9 longshank outboard. Most of the time it worked well, but in storm conditions with short chop, the prop would be out of the water as the boat came over the top of a wave, so powering into the waves was impossible.
If you can afford it, there's really no comparison between an inboard diesel and a gasoline outboard, the diesel wins on all performance and safety levels.

Good luck
John Mardall
Vetus Maxwell Inc.
Why would you be trying to use the outboard in storm conditions?

I got caught in winds to 30 mph on the Chesapeake Bay (as recorded on the Rappahannock Light Buoy) but fortunately I knew the predicted direction and I was able to have the wind mostly on my starboard aft quarter.

The wind weakened before I ran out of sea room to the East and I sailed from Onancock to Kiptopeke in about 7 hours or so.

No way could my boat have motored into that wind whether it had it's original 10HP Bukh Diesel or my 5 hp outboard.

I was able to use my boat a few time with the diesel and had lots of trouble getting out the long creek (Deep Creek) on the Eastern Shore if the wind was on the nose. The old diesel(s) would push it about 2 knots per hour

This was early on before the wind peaked and I had to put the camera down to steer. The autopilot could no long deal with the wind and waves.

Later during this day was the first time I saw the bow pulpit go below the next wave ahead in the bay

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