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Thread: Re-powering for the Kenai

  1. #1
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    Default Re-powering for the Kenai

    Well it looks like I (and undoubtedly many others) are going to have to re-power my skiff in the next year or so to meet the new emmission standards for the Kenai river. I have a 16" Sea Nymph (a rivetted lund-style boat) powered by a 30hp LS Nissan 2-stoke mid-80s vintage. The nissan has been awesome: dependable, fuel effecient, light weight and simple enough for an idiot like me to work on her. I usually fish with one or two friends and the 30 hp has been great at pushing us up river. But it looks like it will soon be time to put her out to pasture. I am trying to figure out my options for re-powering. Some of my concerns are:
    1.) Weight - I am running a small skiff and these 4-stoke engines look massive-I am concerned how my little skiff is going to handle the additional load.
    2.) Reliability/simpicity-My older two stroke is fairly simple mechanically I can handle most maintenance or repair-I dont imagine this will be the case for a new engine. I would like to find a reliable, low maintenance engine.
    3.) Price- I am a man of relatively modest means. I will nead to find a relatively economical way to feed my fishing addiction if i want to stay married!

    Thoughts, adivise and suggestions on re-powering my fishing skiff would be most welcome.

  2. #2

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    I fully understand your frustration. This puts you and many others in a spot.
    You will find that the four stroke will definately get better mileage than a two stroke (of comparable sive to yours). The 50 hp. 4-stroke yammy weighs 204#, the only maintenance required is an oil change now and then. I absolutely love mine. All that being said, I am done with the kenai(re-powering to a 115) my 50/35 is for sale, See on Craigslist.

  3. #3

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    We have a 16' Xpress jonboat with a 25 hp 4 stroke Yamaha. Just got the rig (used) this year, and love it for the kenai. They do weigh more, but me being new to 4 strokes, I was puzzled the first time I looked at it and tried to start it; couldn't find the dang choke! It has electric start, so I just pushed the starter button and it fired up instantly, after sitting months. Wonderful! No smoke, less noise, uses so little gas I thought something was wrong, except the thing keeps running, even with a heavy load. We (3 guys all over 200 lbs) and all our crap weighs that boat down, but it still gets on plane nicely. Top end kinda sucks, especially since I just put on a Mac's river runner lower unit plate on it (BTW, it has already paid for itself the first time I used it!). The Mac's adds some drag, but speed is useless if you've busted your motor on the rocks. I may make a prop change. One thing; the motor doesn't have power tilt/trim, which is really nice on the Kenai to raise the motor when coming into a bank or shore to fish for reds or to just beach the boat; so I gotta come in kinda fast, then yank the motor out of the water, but the Mac's helps in those situations, and it is a heavier motor than the 2 strokes. The electric start is nice, but I'm sure it's not required for the 25. It came that way with the boat.
    Don't be afraid, and stick with Yamaha, as those are the majority around here.
    BTW, I'm thinking of getting a 18-20' used Bayrunner/Klamath in next year or so and powering it with twin 35/40 2-strokes which should be pretty cheap, as there are a few of those still in use on the river, but which should come up for sale eventually. I want to fish saltwater for cheap; new boats/motors are not cheap; for that matter, boats are not cheap---period! Oh well.
    BOAT= Bust Out Another Thousand.
    Jim

  4. #4
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    Default

    The Yamaha 50 sounds like an awesome motor for the kenai and I would love to have one - but it is probably a little too big for my light weight skiff. I will probably have to go with a 25 or 30 or, find a bigger boat!

  5. #5

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    I am in the same boat. No pun intended. My 18' Klamath has a 40/35 evi on it right now and it's a pretty good engine for most things. I have considered replacing it with a 50hp 4 stroke and getting a jet for it as well but by the time I add up all of that cost I am almost 1/2 way to the price of a good used inboard jet boat. I may just be done fishing the Kenai.

  6. #6
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    Default

    Even with the cost and hassel of the re-configuaration, I know that I personally am not ready to give up fishing the Kenai. I accept that given the amount of traffic out there, the new emmission standard is probably the right thing to do for the river. My challenge will be figuring out a way I can afford to continue my favorite past time. I have considered selling the entire boat and trying to search for a new sled/motor combo, however given the relatively low market value of my set up, I think it will probably be cheaper to try to come up with a new/used motor. I am looking at 30 hp 4 strokes. Has anyone else done some market research on this class of engine? The honda BF30 seems to be the lightest engine in this class but boy they are not cheap. A used engine has appeal but I would hate to end up with somebodys lemon.

  7. #7
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    If you purchase a new Yamaha 50 prior to 15 August you can receive $750 in goodies to go along with it. Check here:
    http://www.yamaha-motor.com/outboard...OnSavings.aspx

    It may help to defray some of the costs.
    Tennessee

  8. #8
    Member MARV1's Avatar
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    Default

    Buy a 40 4-stroke, should be about right for your boat. Yammi's and Mercury's are cheaper than the Honda's and can run forever if taken care of. My cousin had a 45 that ran for 13 years all summer long fishing commercially and moose hunting.
    The emphasis is on accuracy, not power!

  9. #9
    Member akrstabout's Avatar
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    Default anyone who needs a new motor

    should consider the Yamaha T-50. I have two on my boat. I had my boat in the Kenai 3 years ago. Tilted one motor up and used the other. 500#'s of motors sitting back there, 22' boat, and 5 people with the top down though and we were passing boats still. They use bigger props than the hondas or anything for that matter. Very good on gas and mine now have almost 500 hours and still have not seen a repair or maintenace shop, I just change the oil every 100 hours.

  10. #10
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    Default

    Ive heard nothing but good things about Yamahas. Does anyone run the 40? Would I need power tilt trim on this or is it still managable to hoist up manually? Im thinking I might have to move the fuel and/or battery forward to accomadate the extra weight of the engine.

  11. #11

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    Joel, definitely go with the tilt & trim with a 40.
    Our boat's got the 25 Yamaha and even that is a stress to tilt manually; especially if your gonna park on the banks and stuff to fish reds, which we've done quite a bit this year. That's the one thing I wish we had (don't even know if the 25's can have t&t), makes beaching the boat easier and less bashing the lower unit on the bottom. However, above all, get the Mac's River Runner. That thing paid for itself at least 4 times in the past 2 weeks; it does scrub off to end speed though.
    Jim

  12. #12

    Default Yamaha lift

    If you look at the Yamaha 40 they have a hydraulic assisted lift. Great to use at slow speeds and when pulling into shore. The torque on the 4 strokes are amazing, full moose and all gear with a 40HP Yamaha tiller, no problem.

  13. #13

    Default new Kenai standards ??

    Can anyone direct me to the info about the new emmision standards/etc. taking effect on the Kenai next year?? Are they also changing the HP limit back to 50 Max ?? Looking for a boat to fish the Kenai and Cook Inlet on good days and want to make sure I buy the biggest HP I can get away with. Also, if they limit you to say 50 HP,for instance, is it legal to have twin 50's on the boat and just use one when you're on the Kenai?? Thanks, EMO

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