Putt Putt outboard.

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by messabout, Oct 22, 2014.

  1. messabout
    Joined: Jan 2006
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    Location: Lakeland Fl USA

    messabout Senior Member

    The devil has made me decide to buy a little outboard for my small skiff. I will go for the 2 to 3HP variety because they are light in weight and easy to handle. Besides, my little flattie does not need more power than that.

    All the current models are four strokes and are necessarily a bit heavier than two strokes, but I can live with the few extra pounds.

    I have sort of zeroed in on the Suzuki 2.5 mainly because it has an oil pump as opposed to splash lubrication on the other brands. The Honda 2.2 is air cooled and a couple pounds lighter but I suspect it might be more noisy in the absence of a water jacket. The Yamaha is a tad heavier at 37 pounds and a few dollars lower selling price. Oddly Tohatsu is both heavier and more expensive. All are single cylinder types which will likely cause them to vibrate more than a multi cylinder model. Because of weight and price limitations none of them will have counter balancer shafts.

    Does anyone have experience with any of the various "tiddler" motors? Please comment about what you like or dislike.
     
  2. philSweet
    Joined: May 2008
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    Location: Beaufort, SC and H'ville, NC

    philSweet Senior Member

    Well, my favorite remains the 2 cylinder 2 stroke 2 - 4 hp Johnson/Evinrudes J3RC mfg between about 78 and 95. Not light, but they run like a sewing machine. One nice feature of this motor is that it has a fuel pump and can pull from a remote tank, or from a small saddle tank on the leg.

    My Merc 3 is a Tohatsu that I found at a flea market. It was new but dead from the factory. Paid $100 for it and sorted out the problem and have been very satisfied with it. It will run on two year old gas, starts first pull, and all I have ever done is replace the screws that fell off of it. It has sat outside or at the dingy dock for 6 years now and nothing and nobody bothers with it. It was a daily driver for a couple years. I see no reason to go with a four stoke in this size range. If the motor weighs more than 10% of the loaded weight, I stick with two strokes.

    http://smalloutboards.com/j390.htm
     
  3. messabout
    Joined: Jan 2006
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    Location: Lakeland Fl USA

    messabout Senior Member

    Thanks Phil.

    It so happens that I have a pristine Merc 2.2 that is a 27 pound two stroke. It has about two hours running time and looks like new although it is an '89 model. It was made in Japan as the ID plate proudly boasts. The damned fuel tank is plastic like most of the little engines use. Over the years, in storage, The tank became brittle and crispy and broken.

    Happily, Parts for the older Merc are still available. I may just replace the tank and water pump impeller, and call it good. New parts cost about $80, A new Suzuki motor cost about $710 at Boats.net. Hmmm. That seems an easy enough decision.

    I am still interested in comments from others about the relative merits of different current brands.
     
  4. fredrosse
    Joined: Jan 2005
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    Location: Philadelphia PA

    fredrosse USACE Steam

    Suzuki on Steamboat

    I bought the Suzuki 2.5 Ultra Low Emission Outboard ($709) as backup power for my steamboat, as a safety measure when out on the Lower Delaware river and Chesapeake Bay. A 20 ft x 5 ft Sharpie type hull, about 1-1/4 tons displacement. Has worked very well for me, pushes the boat along at 5 MPH easily at 1/2 throttle. Full throttle uses twice the fuel, but goes almost no faster. With a lighter boat I am sure the boat speed will do much better!

    This outboard has a reputation for being somewhat troublesome when using 10% Ethanol gasoline, and Suzuki has a replacement jet that runs a little richer for easy starting. I just buy straight gasoline, available for non-highway use in almost any state, and the machine has functioned flawlessly for 2 years now, but I have probably run it less than 20 hours. Noise and vibration are minimal, being a water cooled machine.
     
  5. Ike
    Joined: Apr 2006
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    Location: Washington

    Ike Senior Member

    There are two strokes available. Yamaha has a 2.2 . Most of these small O/Bs are Tohatsu engines under the hood. But I would agree with Phil I have had one of those 2HP johnsons since 1980 and after 30 years of running like a Swiss watch it finally developed a fuel leak. I still have it but I put it in storage until I can get the parts.
     
  6. tom28571
    Joined: Dec 2001
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    Location: Oriental, NC

    tom28571 Senior Member

    Been using a Honda 2.3 4 stroke air cooled and it cranks and runs really well. That is the only good thing about it. Noisy, and with no neutral, a centrifugal clutch and no reverse, it's a PITA much of the time. A 95 Evinrude 3.5 is a much friendlier engine.
     
  7. SukiSolo
    Joined: Dec 2012
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    Location: Hampshire UK

    SukiSolo Senior Member

    The Hondas' are also a little fragile on the handles being an aluminium die casting. Be wary of dropping one or inadvertantly getting a blow on the handle, as they can break a litle too easily. You can certainly hear their distinctive noise though!. They have proved pretty reliable for my local Club and get quite a bit of use on courses.

    Yamaha 2.5 (2 stroke) is a lot easier to service over the small Mariner 2 stroke equivalents. Effectively it is a Mariner/Tohatsu but Yamaha's interpretation as Ike says. The Mariner 4 (4 stroke) is PITA to reassemble the bottom end gear linkage....:mad:.

    No experience of the small Suzui but the 9.9 (4 stroke) has been very good after initial problems with it running too lean. The mixture screw is hidden under a blanking plug on the carb body btw. Very quiet and nice gear change.
     
  8. messabout
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    Location: Lakeland Fl USA

    messabout Senior Member

    Thanks for the comments all. There is no substitute for hands on experience so your input is useful.
     
  9. Fanie
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: Colonial "Sick Africa"

    Fanie Fanie

    Hello Messabout,

    I won't mess about with the 4-strokes, weight and low torque. I bought a 6hp 2-stroke Parsun a while back and it's a beauty and packs a kick. I think they made a mistake in the output and took it off the market before I could buy another one :(

    I bought this motor because it uses an external tank, iow the tank is not on the motor, the reason is if you are in troubled water and you need to refill there is no one to hold the decanting steady. To switch fuel lines is a matter of unplugging the one and plug the other, the motor doesn't even know it.

    Also, if you buy a slightly more powerful motor, nothing says you have to gun if flat out all the time. If the motor runs at about 1/2 to 2/3rd throttle it should last a bit longer and be very polite with your fuel consumption.

    How about a picture of your boat ?
     
  10. Ike
    Joined: Apr 2006
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    Ike Senior Member

    Last summer I bought a kicker motor for my 18 foot Sea Ray I/O. It is a Merc 4. But under the hood, as I said before, it's a Tohatsu. What they guy at the Merc place told me is that these come in 4, 6 and 8 hp and are all the same engine. They just add things or subtract things to change the HP. The carb on mine has a restricter plate. If I remove the plate, which is not advisable and not easy to do it would be six. If it had a higher CFM carb it would be an 8.

    Anyway. I bought the 4 stroke, one because it was 20% off because it was a 2012 instead of 13, and two because the weight factor is no big deal on a boat that weighs in the neighborhood of 2000 lb. However it is too heavy to use on my 12 foot rowboat which is rated for 2 HP. It is very reliable but I have found it is easy to flood it and it is sensitive to water in the fuel. Get a little water in there and it won't start at all.
    It also has an internal tank and a connection for a portable tank. But it is so economical I have never had to use the portable. It pushes the Sea Ray along smartly at 3/4 throttle, and at just above idle is perfect trolling speed. Even wide open it is very quiet. At idle you can't hear it at all 30 feet away. So far it is a very good engine. If it lasts half as long as the Johnson I'll be happy. I think Tohatsu hit a home run with these because all the major outboard manufacturers are importing these engines.
     
  11. Fanie
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: Colonial "Sick Africa"

    Fanie Fanie

    Nothing wrong with Tohatsu's either, I heard only good of them.
     

  12. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Peter, your 4 HP is an easy conversion to 6 or 8, though you'll have to twist some wrenches. Just some timing, limiter caps, high speed jetting and a restrictrer plate.
     
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