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Old 08-02-2007
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engine for roll up dinghy

We have recently purchased a rollup dinghy (zodiak by west marine) for our 33' caliber. what reccommendations would you make for an outboard? i.e.hp? brands etc
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Old 08-02-2007
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I have a 3.5 HP tohatsu four-stroke that is almost perfect for the two dinghies I tend to use. One is a small roll-up floor inflatable, the other is a 12' 6" porta-bote.
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Old 08-02-2007
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There will be a maximum hp rating on the plate on that dinghy. Don't even think about exceeding it.

What size is the dinghy? Do you need to get it up on a plane for long runs every day? Or just get back and forth at occasional moorings nearshore?

Smaller and lighter and cheaper is a good thing--but if you make the longer runs heavily loaded, you may want to come close to the max rating so it can get up on a plane, that's when an inflatable really picks up speed and efficiency.

Remember--you've also got to LIFT the damn thing to store it, and you will call it a "damn thing" every time you try to lift it, if it is too heavy.

New dinghies and outboards are a prime theft target, so invest in some good security and make sure to mark both permanently and prominently so they can be identified if stolen. (Happens even in the nicest places, although just as many probably slip away from simply not being secured properly.)
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Old 08-02-2007
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I have a 9 1/2 foot RIB and use a 3.5HP Tohatsu 2 stroke. Thught about getting a bigger outboard but then the thought of lifting the thing off the RIB and onto my stern rail in a 2' chop made me think twice and stay small. Saw one fellow try lifting an 8 HP off his rail on onto the inflatable in a slight chop and they both went in the drink (20' of water) That cost him some bucks! The 3.5 gets me to my mooring and around an anchorage just fine, slow but fine. As Hellosailor said if you have to do a lot of long runs and need speed go bigger but it has its drawbacks. Check the max horsepower for your rollup, they tend to be pretty low on that type boat.

Last edited by Bump; 08-02-2007 at 03:19 PM.
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Old 08-02-2007
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LoL "Damn thing" That's exactly what I call it for the exact same reason. I have wonderful 2 hp honda all of 27 lbs. for my roll up. I recently bought a RIB and a 9.9 mercury to kick it. The Mercury stays in the dock box only to be used when were tooling around the Mystic River our home port. The Honda is now my travel engine because the Mercury is just to "Damn" heavy.
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Old 08-02-2007
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"Saw one fellow try lifting an 8 HP off his rail on onto the inflatable in a slight chop "
Another good reason to use the boom like a cargo boom, or bring a halyard aft, and make sure there's a LINE carrying the weight of the engine.
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I have a 3.5 Tohatsu 2 stroke. Used it for 3 seasons and then with the arrival of my son and then daugter the following summer (and another summer to recuperate) - it sat in my basement for 3 seasons. we used the sailboat but not no need for the dink w/ motor as we did not cruise anywhere.

A few weekends ago I took out the Tohatsu and it started right up on the third pull. Good little engine and if I recall - I paid around $600 for a brand new one I found online (5-6 years ago). Came delivered to my house via UPS. At the time I was on a budget and bought the smaller engine (verses a 5 hp) - but now in hindsight I would go with a 3.5 again because its so light and is easy to lift. I use it on a 7 foot inflatable achiles with a hard bottom.

Rob
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Old 08-03-2007
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The 3.5 HP four-stroke Tohatsu is only about 37 lbs... very easy to handle.
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Old 08-03-2007
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I've always regretted buying only a 5hp for my 10ft. Rib.

It was fine for the Chesapeake were all you do is go a few hundred yards to shore. It was weak for the Bahamas and Caribe where you go miles in your dink and use it like the family car while the mother ship stays on the hook. I should have bough a 15hp or at leat a 10...makes getting out to the reefs and zinging a couple of miles over to the grocery store or laundry a whole lot easier...especially when you've done your wash and a squall is about to hit!!
Don't skimp on motor size if you are going cruising...but get as small as you can if you are simply using it for getting off the boat for a few hundred yards.
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A lot of what engine you should get really depends on the kind of dinghy and size of dinghy you have. For the small two-person roll-up I have, the 3.5 HP is plenty... The 3.5 HP also works just fine on the 12' 6" porta-bote I have. It has a semi-rigid hull, being made of a flexible plastic, rather than aluminum or fiberglass, but comes up on plane far more easily than a RIB of similar size.
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New England

You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

If you're new to the Sailnet Forums... please read this
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
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