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Thread: Kicker question- 2 vs 4 stroke

  1. #1

    Default Kicker question- 2 vs 4 stroke

    I'm new to boating and have a question/ advice for you seasoned pros. I've been looking to buy a kicker for the 22' Osprey I bought. I've been looking strictly at 4 strokes (9.9hp and 15hp) but a buddy has a great deal on a 15hp 2-stroke/ 10' zodiac combo for about the same price as a used 9.9 4-stroke. The boat came with a 8' dingy and my plan was to paddle to shore when we wanted to stop and explore and have the 4 stroke for trolling. If I bought the 2-stroke/ zodiac combo, I could use to motor for the Zodiac and to troll. I guess my question is if it was up to you, which route would you go? I plan on making regular shore trips... is it worth mixing my gas and switching the motor from the boat to the Zodiac for power to shore? Any advice would be appreciated.

  2. #2


    If you plan to troll with the kicker I would go 4-stroke. Economy, noise, and lack of mixing are all good points for a 4-stroke. Does your buddies 2-stroke have a longshaft? An Osprey is going to have a pretty tall transom and you will likely need a longshaft to get a good bite. 8 horse or better will get you along fine.

  3. #3
    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Anchorage Alaska

    Default number

    just give me you buddy's number and I will get the dingy and 2 stroke - then you won't have to bother with wondering...

    Honestly though - if it is going to save you some bean - mixing gas correctly is not that hard. Get a couple 1.5 gallon cans and pre-mix them at home and take them with you for when your tank needs adding to. Mix accurately per manufactures recomendations before you leave. Add them to your tank as needed.

  4. #4
    Member AkBillyBow's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Palmer, AK


    I went with a four stroke for mine. I like all the known reasons for the four stroke, but my biggest reason was so I wouldn't need to have a seperate gas / oil tank or bring 2 stoke oil with me for mixing. My outboards are 4 stroke, my gas powered pot puller is 4 stroke, the dingy is now 4 stroke and the generator I will be purchasing will be 4 stroke.

    Now I just bring 1 or 2 extra gas cans and can use them on any engine. Simple and takes up less space on the deck.

    2007 Glacier Bay Cat 2690 Coastal Runner, Twin Honda 150's

  5. #5


    2-stroke noisy, might load up, gas mileage, different fuel (mixed) than your main.
    4-stroke quiet, better for idle speeds, gas mileage, same fuel as main.

    Different boat years back, the wives complained about the exhaust smell from the two-stroke we were using that day.

  6. #6
    Member hoose35's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Soldotna, Alaska, United States


    I would think that the 15 2 stroke for the zodiac would be a short shaft, and I wouldn't think this would work as a trolling motor for your osprey, but I could be wrong. If you are going to be going to shore a lot, you are going to want a motor instead of having to row. I am also looking at getting a kicker/trolling motor, and I don't think I would get a 2 stroke for this purpose. I have a 8 foot zodiac and I bought a 2.5 horse suzuki 4 stroke for it. It beats rowing, it is really light, and it was fairly inexpensive, 700 bucks.

  7. #7

    Default Get One of Each!

    I use a super lightweight 3.5HP two stroke for my 10' Zodiac. It is easy to remove and stow when not using the Zodiac. That also makes the Zodiac light and convenient to take out of the water and stow it onboard the big boat. It has plenty of power for the inflatable, and has a small fuel tank built in. It is not powerful enough to maintain safe control of my 26' boat if main power goes down, or even for trolling if the seas are anything but calm and flat, so I have a four stroke 15HP for the big boat. It has enough power to maintain steering in all but really rough seas, uses the same fuel as the main engine, doesn't smell up the atmosphere when trolling, and it is quiet.

    It is really fairly difficult to move an outboard motor off the main boat, and then install it on the transom of the Zodiac, and then remove it when you are done with the dinghy, and install it on the transom of the big boat for trolling or stowage. The really light outboard makes this a lot safer and easier. I just stand it up on a pad in the rear corner of the deck and tie it in.

    The four stroke kicker for the big boat stays securely mounted to the transom. No opportunities for dropping it into DJ's locker, and hurting my back in the process, the fuel source stays fixed, so no contamination gets into the fuel lines.

    One of the earlier responses to your thread mentioned a very light weight 4 stroke kicker, and also the probability that the Osprey will do better with a long shaft kicker. That would be another good way to go. It's only money. Get used to it. It's a BOAT. It is so much fun that it will probably be well worth it to you!

    See You Out There,

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2007


    I am right in line with midnightsunfun on this. The kicker for my boat stays attached to the stern, it is plumbed into the fuel system for my boat and the controls are all used at the helm - no tiller handle. For my Zodiac I carry a Tohatsu 3.5 to power it BUT only during hunting seasons for the multiple trips back and forth carrying hunters, gear and meat. On the fishing/shrimping trips I leave that motor behind and if someone wants to go ashore to explore - out come the paddles. This almost never happens because everyone is too busy pulling pots or fishing but sometimes someone has brought their dog along and needs to take them to shore for a potty break.

  9. #9

    Default Thanks

    Thanks for input guys! I think I might keep looking for the permanently mounted 4-stroke motor tied into the main gas tank and decide later in the season if I need to find a 3.5hp (or so) 2-stroke for the digny I already have. Thanks again and come on summer!

  10. #10

    Default Good idea

    To swap that big of motor out from the big boat to the dingy and back on the water is not as easy as it sounds. I put a 9.9 honda on my 22' Bayliner, ended up with a 8 Honda and it pushed it just the same and weight was 20 less, so I sold the 9.9 Got a 5 Honda for dingy & river raft. Set for life with 4 strokes

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