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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest Forums > Gear & Maintenance
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Old 10-02-2007
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Honda 2hp ??

Anyone have any experience with the Honda 2HP with centrifagul clutch? Looking at a new outboard and weight is primary concern. Had a dealer say stay away from the Honda because clutch engages when starting?? Any real life experience??
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Old 10-03-2007
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Not yet, but its 29 lb. dry weight and air-cooled attributes are putting it on my short list. Practical Sailor reviewed a number of sub 5 HP 4-strokes in recent months, and Honda, despite the $1,000 price tag, did quite well.
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I've had one for a couple years, it can lurch a little if you've got the throttle open a little more than required when starting cold. When starting warm doesn't require any thottle and it's not a problem. The clutch takes some time getting used to, but I really like it.
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Old 10-03-2007
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In so far as the $1000 price tag, I did some shopping around for the honda and found many local marina's offering it for under $800.00. Also with the boat shows all coming up, a deal can be had.
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I use a Suzuki 2.5HP 4-stroke. Comes with gear shift for Forward and Neutral. Great little obm. Had used a Yamaha 3.3hp 2-stroke with clutch. Didn't like it as runs a risk of jack rabbit start and close quarters control without neutral gear.
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When I bought the Honda it was the only 2 HP available new in Calif., best price I found was Oceanside Marine Center $869. Dockmate recently got the Suzuki and I believe he said he was able to get it for $680. Besides gearing, I think the Suzuki may be water cooled, Honda is air cooled. I find it impractical to "rinse in fresh water after each use", I wouldn't be any better about a water cooled engine, but I feel less guilt. The centrifugal clutch works okay on an inflatable after you got it wired, might be a handfull on a hard dink.
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Old 10-03-2007
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Hi,
I just returned from sailing yesterday (a group of friends asked me to be a skipper for the boat they chartered) and we had a Honda 2HP 4 stroke engine on the little inflatable.
1) It really is light - very nice.
2) starting: first time users used either too little throttle to start or too much (gear engaged), several pulls were needed - more than I am used to with 2-stroke Tohatsu (4 to 10 HP models) for example.
3) running: It died almost every time when opening throttle when cold, but when started again it usually managed to engage clutch without killing the engine. Perhaps we should a) use (more) chock or b) wait a minute to warm up just a little
4) landing: with more throttle you hit the sailboat (or pier) fast, with less the clutch disengage and you stop before you get to your destination.
We were first time users of that motor and after a few try-and-error attempts we got it.
I did miss the manual gear: when landing to a sailboat on the anchor I often left the motor in gear with min. throttle - so dinghy is gently pushed against the boat allowing me to tie it.
With centrifugal clutch it is either too fast or not engaged.
4) fuel consumption: I do not know. We got it almost empty and after 4 days it was almost empty. So perhaps it does not use any :-)

Conclusion: For charter use (first time users, complete novice to outboards, ...) I prefer manual clutch and more power.
Ability to run it in gear at very low RPM was missing a little.
When we learned how to use it we appreciated how light it was.
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Old 10-03-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tomaz_423 View Post
4) landing: with more throttle you hit the sailboat (or pier) fast, with less the clutch disengage and you stop before you get to your destination.
That's what I disliked about it. Even after a few years it seems impossible to find that 'magic spot' where you are creeping at a high idle but not low enough to have the clutch dis-engage.
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Originally Posted by Freesail99 View Post
In so far as the $1000 price tag, I did some shopping around for the honda and found many local marina's offering it for under $800.00. Also with the boat shows all coming up, a deal can be had.
Trust me, with the Canadian dollar at par and the fact I want a Honda 2HP and a Honda EU2000, if I don't get a great deal in January at the Toronto boat show, I'll simply order online from the States having negotiated a decent deal on the phone. The shipping won't matter much.
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Old 10-03-2007
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Originally Posted by tsingtao View Post
Anyone have any experience with the Honda 2HP with centrifagul clutch? Looking at a new outboard and weight is primary concern. Had a dealer say stay away from the Honda because clutch engages when starting?? Any real life experience??
Not with the Honda, but with a Nissan I think it was. It was ok, but when you are at the shore, you will often have to start that motor while in the water (so you can keep your nose into the breakers before you get in). Are you ok with that? Also, that little engine is going to have to push hard to get through any breakers at the shore.

When going back to the boat, you will get used to just killing it and coming in at a slow ramming speed. Better grab the ladder first time.

I honestly am a fan of a GOOD, properly sized outboard. It is one of the most used pieces of equipment on our boat. In a very controlled atmosphere, the small outboards are fine. However, if you are planning on cruising or will be using it on the coast wheere you might beach the dink, I think you will not be happy.

Just my real life experiences.

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