New Dink, Looking at Tohatsu 3.5 - Page 2 - SailNet Community
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post #11 of 44 Old 02-20-2008
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i used the 2 stroke Mercury 3.3 from 2001-2005 in salt water. I flushed it once maybe twice a month regularly. In the 5th year of service the impeller failed, manufacturer did not recommend a "do it yourself" fix, but the local dealer couldn't get to if for 6 weeks. I bought the impeller and did it myself, 2- 3 hours pull the drive shaft, replace impeller and replace gasket. Not difficult but not what i'd call preventive maint.

Aside from that it's a dependable engine, if you shut the fuel delivery off and starve the engine when shutting it off. Otherwise even the shortest of period seem to clog the carb.

i use the 3.3 on three different dinks and its better than rowing.

s/v Libertine
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post #12 of 44 Old 02-20-2008
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I've owned a Toha-ssan and now a Niss-su 5 hp for 15 years. I'm very happy and wouldn't hesitate to stick to one of the three Tohatsu brands the next time I purchase.
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post #13 of 44 Old 02-20-2008 Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input so far.

Today I went to WM and put my mitts on a Merc 3.5. It seems nice, well built, and easy to maintain. Every thing under the cover looked like it was easy to get to. The cost seemed high, but I know thats the Merc name and the typical WM mark up.

Next, I went to the local Suzuki dealer and scoped out the 2.5. I was pretty impressed. It's smaller and lighter, which I like a lot. It looks just as easy to maintain as the others, if not easier. The cost is lower. And one factor that is making me lean towards it more, it has a bigger fuel tank than the others I'm looking at. A smaller engine with a larger fuel tank, that weighs alot less . It's now at the top of the list, but just barely. Of course when I mentioned that I was interested in Tohatsu to the Suzuki guy he started giving me the usual sales pitch trash talk, but I can see through some BS. He is a local guy trying to make the sale, which I kinda like too becuase I can put some cash in the local economy. Also, if the engine gives me problems, I can just walk over to his shop and work it out.

Anybody have first hand experience with a Suzuki 2.5?

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post #14 of 44 Old 02-20-2008
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Make him run it in front of you before you take delivery That model is not made in Japan and they are frequently in need of an initial carb tweek. After that they run ok, but they do vibrate a little more than the Tohatsu. Not a bad engine though and it does vibrate less than the Honda.

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Last edited by TohatsuGuru; 02-20-2008 at 11:14 PM. Reason: I'm old, senile and have a bad attitude.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TohatsuGuru View Post
Make him run it in front of you before you take delivery That model is not made in Japan and they are frequently in need of an intial carb tweek. After that they run ok, but they do vibrate a little more than the Tohatsu. Not a bad engine though and it does vibrate less than the Honda.
Thanks for the carb tip.

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post #16 of 44 Old 04-27-2008
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How about an update

Sapperwhite,

It looked like you did a lot of research, I'm curious to know which motor you went with, and what your experience has been.

thanks, Mike
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post #17 of 44 Old 04-27-2008
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I'm sorry I missed this thread first time around. I bought a Tohatsu 3.5 for my dinghy last year, and have not been swept away. On the good side its quite reliable, and moderate weight for a 4 cycle. But on the down side, I don;t find it nearly as powerful as my old 4 hp 2 cycle, and it runs thorough the miniscule built in fuel tank in an awfully short time. Because of the nature of the feed, Tohatsu says there is no way to add an auxilliary tank. If anyone can solve this problem, I would love to hear it, but I find it very troubling. Its a pain in the butt to top off the empty fuel tank while bouncing around in rough water,
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post #18 of 44 Old 04-27-2008
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I have some experience with a suzuki 2hp 2stroke. Nice lightweight motor with plenty of power. One major annoying flaw though was that it chewed through spark plugs like crazy! After 10hrs or so it would fail to start. You could try ANYTHING to get it to start and the only thing that worked was to replace the plug.

Not only that but the plug was a little exotic and rarely carried by the shops. It was an NGK B4H BTW (I have it memorized) and the equivalent plugs would either not work at all or would work for under 5 hrs. I was running 1/50 gas ratio and spent about 1/2 my time at 1/2 throttle and the other 1/2 at near full. Never figured out what the plug issue was but it drove me nuts. I wouldn't use this experience as a reason to discount suzuki entirely as the engine was a 1990 model and saw its use in 2001 after being stored properly. Hopefully the newer models are better.

A good friend of mine has bought several little motors in the past few years. Each one he would put over 1000hrs on in a year. (he was addicted to fishing) From his experience here are some things to look for:

If it's air cooled it will be less maintenance as there is no tiny cooling holes to salt up or impeller to fail. The air cooled ones are usually much louder though.

Having a neutral is a big plus in my book as I hated starting it and having the dinghy immediately try and race away. Makes graceful docking easier too.

If you intend to do any extended exploration in the dinghy having a connection to an external fuel tank is a huge bonus. I personally hated filling the little tank in 2ft chop while balancing over the back and trying not to get gas all over myself. (I ended up using quart oil containers with pre-mixed gas for easy refueling) Also if you have an external tank you can put in a small inline filter if you suspect bad gas or water in gas.

Hope this helps some.

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post #19 of 44 Old 10-19-2008
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at what speed can a tohatsu 3.5 go?

Hi guys
i want to buy a small portable engine to be used on a 500lbs polyster boat. we usually go for fishing with 2 other freinds. So the total load would roughly be 1000 lbs. At what speed can the tohatsu 3.5hp (or equivalent) push us?
thanks for the answer
Amine
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post #20 of 44 Old 10-19-2008
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It depends on what conditions you're going to use a 1000 lb. boat in... if the boat is a displacement design, and you're using it in rough conditions, you're probably going to need something with a bit more horsepower.

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