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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 06-11-2007
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Dinghy Outboard

We're looking to upgrade from the Johnson 3.5HP 2 stroke we have. The 3.5HP is pretty sluggish at pushing my family of 4 (and I'm not small) around in our Avon R280HP inflatable floor dinghy.

I'm thinking about a 5HP or 6HP. Obviously it's going to be a four stroke since you can't get a two stroke any longer, and yes, I know the motor will weigh more than our 3.5HP. The 280HP manual suggests 5HP with a maximum of 6HP.

I was originally thinking of Tohatsu. I had one before (for my trailerable sailboat) and liked it but it turns out there are no service facilities locally, so I'm discarding them as an option. That leaves Honda, Mercury, Nissan and Yamaha. The weight of the Yamaha is HUGE (83lbs) so I'm discarding them. I believe that Tohatsu makes the Mercury 6 and the Nissan 6 so it's primarily a price issue between them. Honda only makes a 5HP.

So what do people think of the Mercury 6HP vs. the Nissan 6HP vs. the Honda 5HP? Are there any gotchas on them I should know about? Is there a huge difference between 5HP and 6HP (I'm assuming yes since we're talking about 17% increase)? Are there other outboards I should look at (I want to make sure I can get the outboard service locally)?

Thanks again!!!
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  #2  
Old 06-11-2007
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This months Practical Sailor rates Mercury tops as far as portables go.
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Old 06-11-2007
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Be aware that most of the small Mercury Four-stroke outboards are actually made by Tohatsu.
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Old 06-11-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog
Be aware that most of the small Mercury Four-stroke outboards are actually made by Tohatsu.
Labatt stated that in the original post. The question is why can't a local Merc mechanic service the Tohatsu? Liability?
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Old 06-11-2007
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I'm sure they can, but just not from a warranty perspective.
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Old 06-11-2007
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I have a honda, I would without a second thought buy another. Very good motor, easy to start.
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I like the Honda 20 HP I have, but I don't know how easy it is to find a service depot.
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Where I am in New Jersey many Marina's are Honda dealers and service depots.
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Old 06-11-2007
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There's no issue finding a Honda, Mercury or Nissan service facility here, which is why I'm having a hard time figuring out which one to get. I hear Honda's are good, but what am I losing by going with a 5HP vs. a 6HP Mercury or Nissan? Also, the Honda 5HP is slightly heavier than the Mercury/Nissan 6HP. I'm thinking that if nobody has anything negative to say about the Mercury, I'll go with it. My fallback is the Honda 5HP.
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Old 06-11-2007
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My experience with the Hondas (other peoples, not my own, but three of them) Is that they are unusually prone to carburettor problems if not used regularly. This can and does affect any motor but my subjective experience with all three that I have had regular contact with is that they are more prone to it.
paul
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