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Thread: surface drive vs outboard on HB?

  1. #1
    Member tboehm's Avatar
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    Default surface drive vs outboard on HB?

    I know there has been lots of dicussion but nothing direct that I can find and I would appreciate some help hashing this out of the pro and cons.

    I'm getting ready to drive up to Maine to pick up a HB in a couple of week and need to decide of a motor. Lot here seem to like the surface drive but I have trouble wraping my head around the fact of no reverse.

    Looks like I'm going to be stuck in NC for a little longer than I would like. We are on the coast and would be using it in tidal areas with lots of sand bars. This leads me to think that the SD would work better for shallow stuff. There is also plenty of oyster beds that like to eat things up. The rivers don't have many rock but plenty of wood.

    How is the noise and full consumption on the SD vs the outboard?

    I know there were some issues before .....Please I'm not wanting to start a fight but I would apprecaite the comments and thought on the the pros and cons of a MB vs the Copperhead.

    Those of you that are die hard outboards....why would prefer the outboard over the SD?

    Thanks for all of the help and input.
    Semper Fi and God Bless

  2. #2
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    I await the discussion with great anticipation. I have a 20HP Honda on my HB. It's about perfect until the water gets shallow. Then it gets tricky.....however, buying a new motor hurts so I making due for now.

  3. #3
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    tboehm, hope you enjoy your visit to Maine, unless you are moving here in the future then it's welcome to Maine. Just curious, can I ask which dealer you are using (I think there are at least a couple). I picked up my HB last Aug from Two River's Canoe & Tackle in Medway, Barry and crew are great to deal with. My primary engine is a SS two stroke 15 hp Mercury and it works well. These things (HB's) are getting quite popular up here (I'm in Northern Maine, Caribou area), I had not really seen them too often until about 5 years ago and now you see quite a few of them on the lakes and rivers. I have no experience with a SD unit and have not seen anybody with one so I can't help you there. Anyways happy boating and enjoy your time in Maine.

  4. #4
    Supporting Member mainer_in_ak's Avatar
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    When my 22 ft. model canoe hits the salt, there will be a 25 hp Yamaha high thrust hanging off the back. If fishing in the salt in your upcoming boat, I'd probably go for a high thrust 9.9 or 15 with the taller transom.

    matnaggewinu


  5. #5
    Supporting Member FamilyMan's Avatar
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    Default a little info

    Quote Originally Posted by tboehm View Post
    How is the noise and full consumption on the SD vs the outboard?
    I too am tuned in and listening to this with anticipation. I'll pay a little of my dues up front though:

    SD's noise is a fair amount more than any modern 4stroker, and is still louder than the "whining" sound of a 2 stroker (sorry, I'm prejudiced against 2 strokers; yeah they're lighter, but the HB can handle more weight on its stern than most). The OB vents its exhaust under the water, is just one reason why.

    I'm not sure there's a huge difference in mileage; if there is, the 4 stroke OB is quite probably the winner by a little, but not so much that I'd worry about it.

    About those sand bars. A SD can just lower its spinning prop down into the sand and jump off the bar - don't try that with an OB!

    Lastly I'm willing to bet that a SD with the same HP will go faster.

    OK, I'm shutting up and listening now. Let's hear from others.
    Dear whatever doesn't kill me, I'm strong enough now. Thanks.

  6. #6
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    The surface drives appear to be at least as economical as the 4-strokes of similar hp rating. And, contrary to FamilyMan's experience, my Yamaha 15 hp 2-stroke (from the last year Yamaha built 2-strokes) is quiet, and operates very economically. The large 2-strokes, particularly the jets, are loud. My MudBuddy Mini 23 is far less noisy. The issue is the exhaust exits the muffler 5' from my ears. I intend to install a quieting-system this season, that routes the exhaust down to the water. Should quiet it nicely. The MBMini 23 is powered by a "small block" Vanguard motor. MB has special Q-mufflers (Q=quiet) for their "large block" models, but not for the "small block" Vanguards at this point. The ss flex-pipe solution should make a significant reduction in the volume, which isn't actually loud.

    Remember, most all surface-drive motors are powered by 4-stoke engines. For fuel economy, my 23 hp used 8 gallons of fuel on a 116 mile trip, last fall. I think that's better than good mileage.

    The loudest boat motor I've heard in recent years, other than airboats, was a large surface-drive motor that sounded like an obnoxious Harley dragster on steroids. I could still hear it when it had gone miles from me. I think it was a Pro-Drive. My motor is nothing like that. Some of the adrenaline-cowboys like the attention a LOUD motor gets them. Most of us don't. They're an insult to everyone that has to hear them. But there are ways to fix it.

    Having no neutral or reverse require a change in habits, but is no big deal. Reverse is a paddle or a push-pole. Neutral is raising the prop out of the water.

    As far as brand of motor, there are a number of good choices, and some poor ones. Do your research and make your own decision. Search the canoeing forum archives and you will find plenty of information to aid your decision. We've been working over the s-d topic here for about 3 years. No need to regurgitate the same themes ... but, be aware, there is a difference between information and a sales pitch. Check the archives.

  7. #7
    Supporting Member mainer_in_ak's Avatar
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    Louisiana boys like their motors loud. Up here in AK, it's about stealth. Briggs makes a super low tone muffler for the 18hp Vanguards, (might work for the 23 hp Mudbuddy too). You don't have to rely on the mud motor companies to test it yourself. I have one coming for my 18 hp copperhead and this is my approach to noise.

    On top of that, Oriley's sells one inch flex tube (I have a role of it) and plan to further quiet my motor with a small silencer attached to the side of the frame with a bracket. (unlike like those fat/heavy silencers that take up the whole under-rack of an ATV). So there yah have it........silence on top of silence. I'll report the performance differences. I'd imagine top-end might change, but not enough that I'll care. Live it up, this idea is brand new and exclusive as far as I've heard regarding mud motors.

    Of course, after being tested thoroughly by myself, it will be a kit option for Copperheads.


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  8. #8
    Supporting Member mainer_in_ak's Avatar
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    Figured I'd share a couple "canoe stories" since Familyman claims these motors are loud:

    As I finished gutting my caribou, I saw Familyman coming by in the morning and flagged my arms trying to get his attention. He didn't see me and I didn't want to holler in case he was looking for a caribou. I left my caribou on the bank and jumped in my canoe. I decided to sneak up on him. I got so close to the back of his boat, that I could have touched him on the shoulder before he finally noticed someone was behind him through the buzz of his Tohatsu fourstroke. I actually thought of doing it, but Familyman carries a 44 magnum and I didn't want to get shot in the chest. Anyhoo, I jumped the crap out of em when I said "Well Hello There!". Lucky I didn't get shot.

    Decided to run up an unamed creek that flows into the Yukon. We saw a massive moose on the way back down while going about 3/4 throttle on mah copperhead. I killed the motor and paddled the last 200 yds so we could get pictures of this big boy. This was in July, and I could only imagine how big his rack was 3 months later during hunting season. I have to laugh at you guys talking about which one is quieter, let me know what the game animals think:

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  9. #9

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    Never ran a SD but for the waters I ran I liked my outboards 20 HP Tohatsu 4 stroke adn 8 HP Yamaha 2 stroke. OB were quiet and efficent ran them mostly sitting down. Not much noise to speak of in modern outboards.

  10. #10
    Supporting Member FamilyMan's Avatar
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    Default very true

    Quote Originally Posted by mainer_in_ak View Post
    Figured I'd share a couple "canoe stories" since Familyman claims these motors are loud:

    As I finished gutting my caribou, I saw Familyman coming by in the morning and flagged my arms trying to get his attention. He didn't see me and I didn't want to holler in case he was looking for a caribou. I left my caribou on the bank and jumped in my canoe. I decided to sneak up on him. I got so close to the back of his boat, that I could have touched him on the shoulder before he finally noticed someone was behind him through the buzz of his Tohatsu fourstroke.
    Very true. I was running pretty slow myself (which means quiet), and when he came up behind me from nowhere, I just about fell overboard from surprise (yes I was wearing my pfd ).

    And he failed to mention that his rig was within frisbee-flyin' distance of my rig - both were underway until the caribou was spotted - later that day when I shot mine; my caribou was more aware of my rig than his (it shouldn't "be" so, but its true), but it still was not spooked, or even walking away.

    But I did not say loud, I said louder. I bet with that silencing deal, you'll have every advantage over my rig - that's my bet.
    Dear whatever doesn't kill me, I'm strong enough now. Thanks.

  11. #11
    Supporting Member FamilyMan's Avatar
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    Default aw man....

    Mainer, Mainer, Mainer...

    Now you got me wondering what I might be able to get for my low hours, runs perfectly Tohatsu 15 HP 4 stroke OB...

    Or maybe I go for full dollar on my entire rig on CL and replace it all with... well, you know the next rig you'll see me in, 'cause its likely that you will have built it, and then matched the motor to it.

    I have no problem following a path instead of breaking trail, when the path goes the direction I want to go.
    Dear whatever doesn't kill me, I'm strong enough now. Thanks.

  12. #12
    Supporting Member mainer_in_ak's Avatar
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    Be careful now......I get stuck too on sand bars when loaded with weight (for about 45 seconds so I can come pull YOU off them). You can ground out though. Man that was a low water year, I hope that section doesn't get like that again.

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  13. #13
    Supporting Member mainer_in_ak's Avatar
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    I should have had yah thrown a longer rope so I could pull you from deeper water : 1 inch of water with sand n rocks can be a pain in the butt


    matnaggewinu


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