Selecting An Outboard Motor

Selecting An Outboard Motor

30 years ago American manufacturers dominated the outboard motor market.Names corresponding to Mercury, Johnson, Evinrude and Chrysler, led the field competing with each other to produce bigger and better outboard engines. Nevertheless, while this was happening they were neglecting the smallest of the outboards. These are the outboard motors that sell within the greatest of numbers and are sometimes the first outboard many of us, buy. This being the case many people persist with the same brand (brand loyalty) as we buy other bigger outboards over the years. The Japanese seized on this truth and gradually Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki and Tohatsu concentrating on small outboards started to take over as market leaders. They achieved this domination by improving efficiency and reliability. As well as adding options to these small outboards previously only discovered on larger engines.

Having achieved success within the small outboard market, these Japanese manufacturers expanded up the power range. They once more came to dominate the outboard engine market up to at the least 20 hp. The American producers instead of competing with the Japanese, gave up and determined to buy these engines from the Japanese and badge them as their own. Now the Chinese have entered the market. Basically doing what the Japanese did previously, copying the most effective options of the present engines and at the same time keeping prices down.

So let us compare the outboards which might be on supply for these in search of an outboard motor for his or her dinghy. If we take a fairly larger dinghy say, a Pioner 12, so that every outboard has to push a reasonably heavy weight via the water. If we then take the next outboard motors :

Mercury 2.5hp; Mercury 3.5hp; Mariner 2.5hp; Tohatsu 3.5hp; Yamaha 2.5hp; Suzuki 2.5hp; Honda 2.3hp; and a Parsun 2.6hp. All these outboards are four stroke engines. This is because of an E.U. Directive that forestalls 2 strokes from being sold within the E.U. These outboards will provide a reasonably wide range of engines available in the marketplace, for powering dinghies.

To judge one engine towards the another a number of tests were completed. A Bollard pull test showed that the Mercury 3.5hp and Tohatsu 3.5hp were the most highly effective at 90lbs of thrust (These engines along with the Mariner are virtually identical). The least effective was the Honda 2.3hp at 66lbs of thrust. In between have been the Suzuki 2.5hp at 83lbs of thrust, the Yamaha 2.5hp at 78lbs of thrust and the Parsun 2.6hp at 70 lbs of thrust.

Subsequent test was Fuel Consumption. At full pace - 5.75 knots, the perfect outboards were the Yamaha 2.5hp and the Suzuki 2.5hp by at the very least 20%. The worst was the Parsun 2.6hp. When the throttles have been eased and the dinghy was cruising the Fuel Consumption comparability was less evident, only about 10% difference. All these figures are for 4 stroke engines. Nevertheless, based mostly on figures previously recorded for two strokes under related circumstances, the older engines have been as much as 50% less fuel efficient at full speed. Very thirsty! Keep in mind 2 stroke outboards are still available second hand.

Then the burden of each outboard motor was compared. 4 stroke engines are heavier than older 2 strokes because of the powerhead etc. The Mercury, Mariner, Tohatsu, Yamaha and Parsun all weighed approx. 38 - forty one lbs (18 kg.). However, the Honda 2.3hp and Suzuki 2.5hp weighed loads less at 28 lbs (12.5 kg.).

Although the Parsun was the cheapest and it's virtually similar the same engine as in the Yamaha 2.5hp, it isn't as good. It is a bit like me following a Gordon Ramsay recipe, to the letter, however when compared side by side you just know that his is going to be that much better. The Chinese are able to repeat, just just like the Japanese did earlier than them, but they have not got it right, but!

Finally just a little about each outboard tested. The Mercury, Mariner and Tohatsu are the same engine. Starting settings for the throttle are straightforward to understand with the choke and cease button clearly labelled. The petrol on/off tap is not so clearly marked. All these motors have gears. Ahead and neutral then utilizing the 360 degree rotation you will get astern thrust. There are 4 tilt positions and a shallow water ability. Oil ranges might be easily checked by viewing the indicator on the side of the engine cover.

The Yamaha 2.5hp also had simply understood starting and stopping settings but the oil degree gauge was out of sight under the engine casing cover. As with the Mercury outboard the Yamaha 2.5hp has gears, ahead and neutral with 360 degree rotation. Unlike the Mercury which has a shear pin, the Yamaha has a rubber hub at the propeller, so no shear pin to break.

The Suzuki 2.5hp is as above however with the oil gauge easily viewed on the side of the cover. The propeller has a shear pin with spares stowed under the engine cover.

The Honda 2.3hp is just not water cooled like all the opposite outboards tested. It is aircooled and has no gears. Instead it uses a centrifugal clutch. This makes beginning and maneuvering more difficult than the others. It simply takes a little bit of getting used to it. The oil gauge is out of sight under the cover. The propeller has a shear pin with spares stored under the engine cover.

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