Join Date: May 2012
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Re: Another (stupid?) outboard motor question
You aren't going to hurt the engine by using, or not using, the choke. If it starts and runs, you didn't need the choke. It if won't start, choke it. All the choke is doing is regulating the fuel / air mixture. Your car does this automatically through a combination of sensors in the air intake, not to mention your car also has the benefit of electronic fuel injection which allows more control than a carburetor does.
Like Sal says, every engine is a little different- especially when they get a little age on them. Just like a woman, you learn what she needs to be happy and you give it to her. You usually measure success by the feedback from the fuss-o-meter.
I have a Nissan 5hp that needs half choke whenever I go to start it, even if it's 95 degrees outside. There isn't much adjustment to the carb, so it's just as easy to use the choke to give the girl what she wants. .
It starts on the first pull unless it has sat for a few weeks, in which case it needs a few pulls on full choke, then a few with no choke, then it talks a little smack which tells me she's ready for half choke. Then she's up and running and stops her griping.