Just another Moderator
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New Westminster, BC
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I've known several owners of these engines - all of them now have outboards mounted on the transom.
From what I can gather the biggest problem is a tendency for raw water to get into the engine proper - causing obvious difficulty starting.
A good stock of spares is, unfortunately, a necessity with these. The constant worry is a major PITA.
On top of that, when it comes to the eventual replacement (usually an outboard) you're stuck with a costly removal/hull repair, or you end up dragging the lower unit around after the fact (you can remove the power head to free up some space and save some weight.)
Unless, of course, you're prepared to spend $10K or more to put in a new saildrive diesel!