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I have a 25 foot Northstar 500. I am considering getting an outboard to replace the atomic 4 which is giving me trouble. What size would be best? I found a good price on a 4hp - but I don't know if that is big enough. Would a slightly larger be more fuel efficient for 2- 3 hour cruises?
 

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Without knowing more about the boat, like the displacement, it is hard to say anything about what kind of outboard you'd really need. IIRC, the Atomic 4 was about a 30 HP motor, so going with a 4 HP outboard is really a significant drop in HP.

Also, is the transom reinforced to allow you to use an outboard as an auxiliary engine?? If not, you may have to do some work to allow this change.

IMHO, it would be better to get the Atomic 4 running properly, since it would provide more power and give you alot more flexibility in charging and hotwater options than an outboard. It would also be better for resale.

If you do get an outboard, make sure that you get a long shaft or extra long shaft model, since you will need that to help keep the prop submersed, especially in heavier seas.
 
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