New Outboard

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    Hey folks, we need some help.

    Looks like our 2000 Suzuki DF50 has some repairs required. Turns out she broke a timing chain tensioning bracket, which literally threw a nut in the works. She is in a private shop in 100 pieces waiting for our instructions.

    We are considering “re-power” or “repair”.
    A repair would be a complete rebuild of the engines powerhead including head and crank. So all new bearings, seals, rings, etc. in the crank, along with the head valves furled, new guides, etc. basically a new power head. $3500.

    We would go with one of the big-4 for easy repair out of town (Mercury, Honda, Suzuki, Evinrude). We would look at 75-90 hp four stroke fuel injected.

    $3500 gets us a new power head – but still on a 15 year old leg and tranny. New 75 hp engines & controls run at least double $8000.

    The obvious choice is if it “grew on trees” we would buy new, but we are at a decison point – so does anyone have any good leads or contacts for either new or used (2005 or later)?

    Or other thoughts. Everyones 2-cents is welcome.

    Darry and Leisa

    Eric Manevich

      There is a new DF60A for a bit less then $7000

      Try and talk to my mechanic (Kelly) he knows Suzukis and he is good with finding parts online.

      Alan & Belinda

        Always a tough decision. I think I would be inclined to cut my loses and upgrade. Sell what you have for parts or a project. Have a look at Yamaha too. The F70 is only 253 lbs


          Yea, I just got a new Yamaha F70 253lbs and am quite happy with it.
          There remains a big question to be answered Darry, “How long are you going to keep the boat for?” That was the deciding factor for me. If I was planning to divest myself of my boat I would have simply replaced the whole lower unit for $3000 and then sold the boat with the old Honda and cut my losses. But, at the present I am not ready to give up on boating, I actually am hoping to squeeze another 10 years out of my tired old body and be out on the water a lot more, so for my future the boat is still a big part of it, therefore “Re-Power” was the best choice. Mind you, a very expensive choice! If I amortize my cost over a dozen more years it is not so bad plus, when I do sell in another 10+ years my boat will command a higher price with the “Re-Power” and low hours on it. Surprisingly we don’t put a lot of hours on our engines with these Macs, it took me quite some effort to get my initial 20 hours break-in so that I could change out the fluids and start my season. It appears to me that in future I will likely only accumulate aprox.50 hours per season. Over a 10 year period that is low hours so the engine may retain high resale for the boat. Maybe wishful thinking but that is my thought. Also considering how much money I already have invested “Pimping My Ride” over the years, the only way I can recoup those costs is to enjoy my ride for another decade. Something to think about Darry, and also consider this – They charge $$$ for removing the old engine and more $$$ for installing the new engine over and above the sticker price for the new engine, add a few “K” for this!
          By the way, it is a lot of fun having a go faster sailboat!!!


            Like Terry, I justified the re-power by considering the amortization over the next 10 to 20 years that we might use the boat. If we do sell the boat I don’t expect to recoup the money we have spent on upgrades.
            Good luck with your decision.

            Michael Dirk

              Prior to joining club Windspiration with the DF90 ($7500-6/yr warranty, at Brant Marine 2012 clearance – taxes and rigging gear extra), I had placed a $500 deposit with Seth at a marine engine shop just down from Brant Marine, Pederson Marine or something like that – was to commission the rebuilding of a 2006 Evinrude 90hp, for $5500 cash sale, 90 day warranty.

              If you happen to consider the pre-2015 Mercs – there’s a 75hp 400lb beast on a 26X at the Burrard Civ lot storage. (also for sale). Bridgeview marine had a number of lease return 75-90hps come in this spring – perhaps they might still have some?

              Good luck – hope to see you in the 20kn+ club – desolation is a 4.5hr trip away from Vanier launch^^

              You must be logged in to view attached files.

                Bachus, how much fuel did you burn? I burn roughly 1liter per nautical Mile at 15knots with my 50hp.


                  Whipsy, You might want to re-calculate as your milage seems way out of wack for 15 kts of speed which I would guess as WOT!
                  It is 15NM from Point Roberts to Sucia as the crow flies, which was 2.5 hours on my old Honda 50 @ 3700rpm 6 kts. I could usually get 4.5-5 hours on my 25 litre tank at that speed & rpm. It would be a tough squeeze to get the return trip (30NM) on my one 25 L tank but I might make 25NM on 25L which works out to 1 NM per Litre at 3700 rpm 6 kts. How can you possibly get the same mileage doing 15 kts at WOT – 6000 RPM!!! I don’t believe you! At WOT you would be drinking that fuel faster than I could drink water. Try again!

                  PS on my new Yamaha 70 the same rpm would give me 8 kts so I could likely make the round trip with one tank. The 14X11 prop really gives me more distance for the litre on the same time frame due to the greater speed, but if I wound her out to 6200rpm I would get well over 15 kts but the gas would be gone just as fast! I might make it one way on a 25 litre tank and get there in one hour but I would need a second tank to get home on at that speed. I keep my speed down to conserve on gas. 4000rpm seems to be the max otherwise she is a heavy drinker.


                    I had to work on Salt Spring last weekend and left Crescent beach Marina with mast up and

                      no boom, bimini down

                    . WOT to Miners bay, half a tank got me out past point roberts, roughly middle of the strait. Full tank 22.7l got me from mid strait to Miner’s Bay and on to Salt Spring near Kingfisher Cove by Fulford. Left there for Poet’s Cove and hit empty passing Portland Island. 33 miles to SS and 3 more toward Poets Cove for 36NM at WOT on 33 to 38l.

                      Don’t forget it’s an X that’s pretty much stock except for 2 house batteries and I was very lightly loaded with only 2 on board. Also my fourth prop in my search for speed etc.

                    Overall we did 76NM last weekend. We sailed just over 10NM on the way home from Georgeson Passage to Pt Roberts. And other than Port Browning to Lyall Harbor at 6 knots everything was WOT. So even if my half tank I started with was 15l or more, I bought 22 liters at Miner’s bay and 44 liters at Lyall harbor and ended up at CB with a half tank. 76NM less 12NM sailed 64NM motored 59 of which were at WOT for 66l fuel 70ish for error on the part tank.

                    When cruising I always observe 1/3 out 1/3 return and 1/3 reserve, to make it easy I have 3 5gal tanks. And if I’m anywhere near fuel I fill them up.


                      There are some really interesting MPG numbers in the boat test section on the Suzuki website.

                      If you go to the boat test section and look for a pontoon boat (as close to a MacGregor as you can get as far as prop etc goes) you can see what they got for MPG at different speeds.

                      Going faster does increase the gallons per hour but because you are also doing more miles per hour the overall increase in fuel consumption is not as much as you might guess.

                      Of course in our waters the currents also play a huge role … if you time your passages to use the current then going slower will conserve more fuel. If you are fighting the current then going faster might actually be more efficient.

                      This might be a good topic for a club night.


                        Here are the test results for the prop (14inch * 13pitch) that I and most other Suzuki 70 and 90 HP motors mounted on a Mac use.



                          Looks like I need a 90 😉

                          Cruising at 18kts and getting 1l per NM or 4mpg(us).

                          Seriously I have 1 more prop to buy before I re-power. I have 400RPM I can give up for 2 more inches of pitch and still be in the recommended WOT RPM range. If that doesn’t prove reliable I’ll look for a bigfoot lower and I know exactly which props I’d use for that.

                          BTW I bought a Michigan Wheel Vortex with the exchangeable hub and get my props through Tacoma propellor for under $100 without a hub.

                          Right Now I’m running a 12.5x9p at 5950RPM WOT. I still want to try a 11.5x11p in the same series of prop, should be 5500RPM and hopefully over 16kts.

                          Sorry for the total de-rail Darry. Just for the record This is our 4th season on our re-build and it’s running perfect and strong. I do fresh plugs, oil, and fuel filter every season. Have to do the impeller pronto but its still “going” strong



                            Well Whipsy, it makes no sense to go slow in your circumstance compared to what I get. You save a lot of time and get the same mileage then WOT makes sense. Some of us, like me are heavier loaded so don’t get that great a mileage. I actually base mine on litres per hour. I am also ballasted at my low speeds too so that makes a difference. I will have to do some extensive testing to discover the potential of my new Yamaha.
                            Gemini uses a 14X10 on his big Suzi and only gets 5800rpm @WOT yet I get 6200rpm with 14X11, Maybe I should try a 14X12. My best speed on one of my tests with an empty ballast and just me in the boat was 19mph, I think if I had trimmed the engine a bit I would have made 20mph. But I also had all my sails on plus all the stuff I carry around. I think if I strip the boat and try again I might make 22mph!


                              Back to the original post…
                              As much as it will cost more to re-power, it does provide an opportunity to go higher horsepower and in turn more speed, would this not entice Lisa to spend more time with you on the water?
                              That has to be worth something!

                              Michael Dirk

                                Most impressive Whipsyjak – I never managed more than 13kn with the 2002 Honda 50hp

                                With the Suzuki DF90 propped with a pontoon appropriate:
                                Idle speed = 1.5kn/hr @ 1L/hr
                                5kn = 3.2L/hr
                                10kn = 7.5L/hr 4500rpm
                                15kn = 15L/hr
                                20+kn(WOT 5890rpm) = 34L/hr

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