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Thread: Motor size for my canoe

  1. #1
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    Default Motor size for my canoe

    I have a 15 ft old town predator thar I am looking to get a motor for. It says it is rated for a 5hp motor I was curious if an 8hp would be too much for it. I have a potentially good deal on a tohatsu but if it's too big I am not really interested.

  2. #2
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    If you're only ever going to be in water deep enough for it and clear enough not to clog the water intake that should do you good. If you'd like to go shallower and not worry about burning up the motor if you run through the weeds look at a small mud motor. I've got a Grumman Sportboat with a small Swamp Runner long tail and love it! There's other good options too, Go Devil makes small long tails, Backwater, Copperhead Surface drives. If that 8 horse isn't too heavy (try to get the seller to come with you to the water and give it a whirl) and the price is right go for it, but be aware there are easier ways to get over the shallow and through the weeds.

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    every person has ideas on motor size , but one thing if you go with an out board you don't want a sheer pin in the prop.
    as you will break it at a point when you need the motor the most. the cheep 5 HP motors all have sheer pins in the prop, go to it,
    it is all money , what ever you wind up with will work for you , as you will learn to work around the bad points,
    am live with the good one's a lot depends on the type water you will run , shallow ? deep ? , rocky? , sand/ mud ? narrow? wide?
    SID

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    I was thinking of using it in wasilla creek possibly in the knik, little su. The tohatsu weighs @85 pounds so it weighs less that the smallest go devil motor. I did see your posts about the mud runner long tail. How much do you think you have into it and what is the weight on it?

  5. #5
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    I don't know anything about those rivers, a regular outboard might do you good.

    This is the kit I got. $399 plus shipping, I can't remember what shipping was.

    http://mudmotorkit.com/mud-motor-kit...mp-runner.html

    I got a coupon for a 212 Predator from Harbor freight, $100 plus another 100 for Lindens to ship from Seattle to Fairbanks.

    Props for those kits are inexpensive. Their line of thinking is something WILL break, and WHEN it does, they want it to be something that is easy to change and cheap, so it's the prop. I haven't broke one yet, I'm sure I will and I keep several in the boat for different loads, and for when I do break one.

    I spent maybe another $200 dollars on some after market parts; free flow air filter, tuned exhaust and muffler, different jets, to get the thing to breath better, they run very lean from the factory due to EPA restrictions. They haven't gotten a fair shake down yet, between a plugged tank vent and lost fuel cap I got water in the fuel, but still made it home aright.

    I haven't put it on a scale, I keep meaning to, but with a full tank of gas I think it weighs about 80 pounds.

    I ran an 8 horse Honda on a lift for a couple years, and this beats that hands down for anything I've done so far.

  6. #6
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    What rivers have you had on it? What are the reasons for liking it over the more traditional outboards? Any issues you have run into with running the longtail?

  7. #7
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    I've run it on the Chatanika from the Elliot HWY down to the dirt road from Murphy dome, Birch Creek, the Yukon River, on a 17.5 foot Frontiersman freighter, 12 foot Larson skiff, and a 15 foot Grumman Sport Boat. I've run that stretch of Chatanika between the Elliot and the Murphy Dome road several times with the outboard and lift on a canoe too, was quite a hassle working the lift and the tiller at the same time, always worrying about damaging props or lower units or plugging the water intake.

    I can run much shallower with this long tail than the outboard, and when it hits the bottom it pivots and comes away from the bottom, where the outboard, unless I lifted it, would stay on the bottom and grind. Also, if I want to keep the prop in the water and skeg bouncing off the bottom I just lift up on the tiller and grind my way through. I've done it in gravel with very little damage to the prop, the skeg does a good job protecting it. I'm even thinking of cutting it down to let the prop stay in the water a bit shallower, haven't done it yet. The few times I've stuck it in shallow water I was able to walk it to motorable depth in my knee boots. I'm sold on air cooled mud motors for river use, they're tougher and less moody than water cooled outboards. If I could afford it though, I'd have a big inboard jet, a small outboard jet, and a couple different boats with mud motors and even an ocean boat with big outboards. But I can't, and for my river uses so far the mud motor seems to cover most bills. I've got a 25 Go Devil Long Tail on an 18x48 Ouachita that works pretty good, won't go as shallow as my Swamp Runner and is kind of slow, but it will grind over and through stuff I never would have tried with an outboard growing up.

    Issues...this set up took some tuning get right. There's lots of adjustments that can be made, and depending on the craft you may have to change them if you put it on a different boat, or make adjustments as the shape of the bottom "changes" with use. You can change the balance by moving to different pivot holes in the bracket. If it's too tail heavy it's hard to lift the prop out of the water, to light in the tail the prop wants to be too high the water and won't get a good bite. I also bent the skag to get the tiller to stop pushing towards me. I drive left handed and the tail wanted to walk to the left, pushing the tiller to the right against me, so I bent the tip of the skeg to the left to keep the prop centered. Can almost drive with no hands...almost, haven't tried it. The throttle the kit came with was a weird Thai racing thing that instead of squeezing like a bike brake or twisting the tiller like a regular outboard it was a lever that turned. I didn't like it, changed it to a squeeze lever like on a bike brake and it's much better for me now. The Delrin bushing it ships with can be damaged if weeds or something chokes water from it or fishing line gets wrapped up in the shaft. There are ways to make it irrigate better, they also offer a bronze "service" bushing you can order separate or ask them to install when the kit is ordered.

    With the tail being so long I can see where it might have trouble in super tight turns in small creeks, I haven't had any trouble yet. I kind of figure that if my 15 foot boat or 17.5 foot canoe will go through it than my 7 foot tail should make it too.

    I wanted to try Copperhead, Backwater, Stumpjumper, I couldn't find any negative reviews about them and would still like to try them. At the time, my wallet said Swamp Runner, and I've been happy. Until I get my hands on something else and it blows my mind like jumping from outboards to mud motors did, that's probably what I'll keep for my small boats.

  8. #8

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    I have that same boat and run the 6hp Tohatsu on it. The 5 and 6 hp are the same weight and the 8 is a step up in frame size if I recall. I don't think I'd want to hang more weight off of the transom than the 6. I'd recommend borrowing a motor and trying it first to see if you want to invest in a motor. I use a tiller extension on mime, but still find the seating uncomfortable for extended runs.

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