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Thread: 6hp on a 16' driftboat?

  1. #1
    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    Default 6hp on a 16' driftboat?

    I was at my mercury dealer the other day picking up a part for my halibut boat and saw they were running a sale on new Mercury outboards 6hp and under.
    I have been considering getting an outboard just for putzing around on the lakes trout fishing and such. Also would use it for exiting the Kasilof river after drift fishing.
    I currently run a 50# thrust minkota trolling motor for taking the 10 year old trout fishing on local lakes but am getting tired of carrying and charging the batteries.
    My boat is a 16' Koffler driftboat and it has higher sides than a lot of other drift boats I have seen.
    I don't want to go fast as we have other boats for that.
    Would this work ok? I know 6 hp isn't much but I don't need to go fast just want to troll around without having to mess with batteries or have the batteries run out.
    I am not afraid of rowing it is just a pain to row around the lakes all day especially when it gets windy like it was the last couple of times we went out.
    Any thoughts?
    Oh yeah the price was $1500 for a brand new 6 hp with gas tank ready to go.
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    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    Chris,
    Will they let you "demo" one for an hour to see if it's the right motor for your needs?
    Seems harmless enough to ask anyway.
    BK

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    Member AKDoug's Avatar
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    I bet it'll be more than enough. You can't really plane a drift boat anyway..they get way out of shape at speed.
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    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    I figured it would work for what I want to do. I tried a 15hp once and going upstream on the Kenai it sure was a bit squirrely and wanted to side slip a bit.
    I am thinking a 6hp might be just what I need. besides the added bonus of not lugging around and charging batteries.
    I will have to go to cooper landing and get the puylleys and such to reroute my existing anchor setup from the center to the side. I have kinda been thinking about that modification for a while anyway.

    As far as the test drive I highly doubt it and there isn't a good place to do that close by their shop anyway.
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

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    A 6hp will be more than enough for trolling around and such. I have 4hp I use on my 22' inboard jet boat for trolling and it moves it surprisingly well. I think it will do well for your intentions and then some.

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    6hp should be plenty. I've seen guide sized db's using a 2hp Honda. Years ago, on an old Valco skiff we had a 4hp kicker (1975 Johnson 2stroke) that would keep us steady in the current on the Kenai. Luckily we never needed it, but should the main have ever conked out, it would have given us a controllable downstream drift. So 6hp to head downstream to the cabins pullout in a db should do just fine.

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    I have a 7.5 and it's more than enough to push my 16 foot alumaweld guide model around lakes, and up most mellow rivers back to the launch.

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    Member hoose35's Avatar
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    seen a friend of mines guide drift boat with a honda 2hp on it, don't think he would put it on there if it didn't work, so I think a 6 would be good enough too
    Responsible Conservation > Political Allocation

  9. #9

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    Would work fine as long as you do not want to back upstream. Make sure you get right shaft length, a lot of drift boats work
    well with a extended device like a dole fin or hydro shield. Std. drift boats have so much rocker they do not respond well to
    power, some wide stern drift boats are made for outboards but they do not row as well. Clackacraft made one and the Roberts
    design was made for a motor.

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    is it one cylinder or two. singles make alot of noise and vibration. a used yamaha t8 with electric start and tilt and trim would be much more welcomed after a days fishing and cost about the same.

  11. #11
    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flatbottom View Post
    is it one cylinder or two. singles make alot of noise and vibration. a used yamaha t8 with electric start and tilt and trim would be much more welcomed after a days fishing and cost about the same.
    I don't want a Yamaha and definetly no electric start. Did you see the part about not wanting to deal with batteries?
    For what I am doing with it the motor I am considering is a good choice for me I think.
    I don't think the t8 is made anymore so I would have to buy the t9.9. the t9.9 is over $1,000 more. The Merc is 57# and the Yamaha is 102# so weight is also an issue.
    I also refuse to deal with my local Yamaha dealer due to advice of others and trying to find a used t8 could be a hassle.
    The Merc dealer in Homer I deal with from my research has the best prices and service instate on Mercury and Mercruiser.
    The dealer in Soldotna told me they couldn't even buy the new prop I wanted last year for the price Marine Services in Homer sold me one for. I paid @ $125 with the prop being in stock and Soldotna shop had to order it and the price was $185.
    I really just wanted to discuss using a 6hp motor on my driftboat and it seems from other posts I am making the right decision to buy it if I do.
    New motor with warranty is what I am wanting.
    Now I just need to justify spending the $$ when the trolling motor still works ok it's just a pain to deal with at times.
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

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  12. #12

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    It's a boat. Do we ever justify the cost of any of it?

    Quote Originally Posted by kasilofchrisn View Post
    I don't want a Yamaha and definetly no electric start. Did you see the part about not wanting to deal with batteries?
    For what I am doing with it the motor I am considering is a good choice for me I think.
    I don't think the t8 is made anymore so I would have to buy the t9.9. the t9.9 is over $1,000 more. The Merc is 57# and the Yamaha is 102# so weight is also an issue.
    I also refuse to deal with my local Yamaha dealer due to advice of others and trying to find a used t8 could be a hassle.
    The Merc dealer in Homer I deal with from my research has the best prices and service instate on Mercury and Mercruiser.
    The dealer in Soldotna told me they couldn't even buy the new prop I wanted last year for the price Marine Services in Homer sold me one for. I paid @ $125 with the prop being in stock and Soldotna shop had to order it and the price was $185.
    I really just wanted to discuss using a 6hp motor on my driftboat and it seems from other posts I am making the right decision to buy it if I do.
    New motor with warranty is what I am wanting.
    Now I just need to justify spending the $$ when the trolling motor still works ok it's just a pain to deal with at times.

  13. #13
    Member DRIFTER_016's Avatar
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    Chris
    A 6 will work fine for running around the lake. A little slow perhaps but it will work ok.
    I don't know if it will have enough power to run back up river when fishing the middle but it will definately work for running across the lake and down river. As said make sure you get a motor with a long enough shaft.

  14. #14
    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    I guess I will also have to register this boat now that I will be putting a motor on it. I haven't had it registered in a few years as it isn't required on a non motorized vessel of this length.
    I hope I can keep the numbers already stenciled on the bow.
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

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    Quote Originally Posted by kasilofchrisn View Post
    I guess I will also have to register this boat now that I will be putting a motor on it. I haven't had it registered in a few years as it isn't required on a non motorized vessel of this length.
    I hope I can keep the numbers already stenciled on the bow.
    Yes Sir, the numbers stay with the boat, it is a simple renewal even though expired.

  16. #16
    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    Well I called on the motor today. They sold all 4 longshafts they to one river guide and only have the short shaft left in a 6 hp.
    oh well. If they order me one it won't be at the discounted price. I guess I will keep an eye out for what I am looking for.
    Maybe check with the local Honda dealership.
    At least the trolling motor still works good I just need to charge up and lug around those heavy batteries.
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

    "Fishing and Hunting are only an addiction if you're trying to quit"

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    IF anyone sells Tohatsu they may have one. If you did not know Tohatsu is the actual manufacturer of the Mercury, Nissan low horsepower motors, the ONLY difference is labels and $$$.

  18. #18
    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
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    I am also debating pulling the 15hp Bigfoot kicker off of my halibut boat and trying that.
    It is a little heavier than what I would like but would have plenty of power. The bigfoot motors ae geared lower with bigger props and are designed for use as kickers or on Aluminum pontoon boats.
    Might be a bit of a pain to switch back and forth but I guess I won't know until I try it.
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

    "Fishing and Hunting are only an addiction if you're trying to quit"

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