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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance > Engines > Outboard
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  #11  
Old 12-09-2013
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Re: Outboard Starting Procedure

I have had many different two strokes over the years, and a couple of four strokes. Here is what worked for me on all engines:

1. Choke all the way on

2. Throttle set at fast idle speed, not too much

3. Pull hard

4. When it fires, don't be too quick to open the choke, especially if it is cold outside.

Some carbs have an "enrichment circuit" instead of a choke plate. Opening the throttle very far disables the richening feature. I had the same engine you have, IIRC it had a choke plate.

For many years I have used this in anything that burns gas:

Fuel Additives / Treatments | Berryman Products

Not sure if it is necessary, but have not had any fuel related problems.

Even if you run the carb "dry" a small amount of fuel will stay in the bowl. If you are going to leave the engine for more than a week or so, suggest you drain the bowl. It works for me.

Paul T
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Old 12-09-2013
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Re: Outboard Starting Procedure

If you try to impose your will on an outboard, you're entering into a world of pain. It's best to learn what it wants and stick with that.

My process (Tohatsu 4 stroke/probably irrelevant to you) is:
  • Open air valve on tank
  • Pump the primer
  • Full choke
  • Throttle at the "start" triangle (about 1/3)
  • One slow pull of the cord, which seems to align something and keep it from bucking
  • One fast pull of the cord

90% of the time, this works perfectly (I'm crossing myself, knocking on wood, and scourging myself with a sage bush as I type this).

Hell hath no fury like an outboard scorned.
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  #13  
Old 12-09-2013
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Re: Outboard Starting Procedure

Sorry for the motherhood but are you in possession of the owner manual? If not, have you tried to find it online? To me, that would be the place to start. Beside ensuring that the kill switch is in and the lower unit is in the water, the initial steps you mentioned (vent, plug fuel line and squeeze primer) are banged on. If the engine is cold (seemed to be the procedure for 8 HP suzuki, 9.9 Evinrude (both 2 stroke) and now Tohatsu 9.8), pull the choke (full), rotate throttle to cold start position, pull slowly to take off the slack and then one or two quick pulls and the engine should start. Most engine will need a little bit of time to warm up during which time you slowly push the choke back in (a bit at a time) and listen to the motor. It will let you know if you are doing it too quickly or too much at a time. The only time you really go to full throttle is if you flooded the engine (a...you will smell it and be...should see fuel/oily spots appearing on the water). Normally, when this happen, I would push the choke all the way in (no choke), rotate throttle to full and then pull the crank. As soon as the engine starts, you bring the throttle down to a fast idle position and let the engine warm up.
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  #14  
Old 12-09-2013
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Re: Outboard Starting Procedure

Choke: How much choke you use, how far you pull out the choke, really depends on the ambient temperature and the engine temperature. (Cold start vs restart.)

And when all else fails, you chant Gregorian style:
"I can play dominos better than you can"
"[chorus:] No you can not."
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Old 12-14-2013
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Re: Outboard Starting Procedure

Quote:
Originally Posted by newhaul View Post
Do not run a 2stroke motor till it dies from lack of fuel just till it starts to run out. The lube oil is in the fuel and running till it quits isn't good no fuel = no oil and that leads to catastrophic failure at a very inopportune time which usually leads to testing ones insurance.
Incorrect. The crankcase will not be anywhere near dry when the motor stalls, just too lean to run. In decades of outboard service, I have never seen a lack of lubrication from running until stall. But... I have seen many dozens of gummy and varnished carbs because of fuel left in them.
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Re: Outboard Starting Procedure

"Do not run a 2stroke motor till it dies from lack of fuel just till it starts to run out"
IIRC, every two-stoke maker actually says to turn off the fuel supply and run the engine until it exhausts the fuel and dies, in order to get fuel out of the fuel system so it will not clog up before putting the engine away for prolonged storage.
So, objectively, the engine makers are all condoning the practice of running the engine till the fuel is totally exhausted.
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Old 12-14-2013
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Re: Outboard Starting Procedure

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
"Do not run a 2stroke motor till it dies from lack of fuel just till it starts to run out"
IIRC, every two-stoke maker actually says to turn off the fuel supply and run the engine until it exhausts the fuel and dies, in order to get fuel out of the fuel system so it will not clog up before putting the engine away for prolonged storage.
So, objectively, the engine makers are all condoning the practice of running the engine till the fuel is totally exhausted.
Indeed. Another case (as the IT folks say) of RTFM.
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  #18  
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Re: Outboard Starting Procedure

The first time I read an outboard manual, an outboard that was new and HAD a manual, it was a 25hp Tohatsu when they were new-ish on the US market. Firned of mine was knocking himself out trying to start it for the first time, confirmed everything looked right, everything was being done by the book, engine just wouldn't start. When he got done I walked over, invoked Our Father Who Art In Evinrude, moved the choke, gave it one pull and it fired up.

The manual had the choke positions (hot/cold) reversed.

Like the pilots say, "Only touch the shiny buttons".
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Re: Outboard Starting Procedure

I have owned many 2 stroke outboards & motorcycles over the last 66 years. Properly taken care of they are hard to kill. However, they don't like being run flat out very long in a lean condition, kind of melts holes in the top of pistons. But they sure do sound good right up until the time they melt. Now days, with fixed high speed jets that shouldn't be that much of a problem, unless one "tinkers" with them.

I have "run them dry" for many years with no adverse effects. About 20 years ago I started draining the carb as running them dry leaves a small amount of fuel in the bowl.

Never had much problem with fuel left in the carb until I started using 4 strokes, which I now drain religiously if they are not to be used for more than a week or so.

As mentioned, reading the owners manual helps, seems like they are always right, when printed correctly.

Paul T
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Re: Outboard Starting Procedure

I learned this the hard way, twice (once on the receiving end and the other on the sending):

Check behind you before pulling the chord.

I socked my wife with my elbow once and the PO socked me straight in the jaw starting the motor.
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