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outboard vs surface drive HP comparison

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  • outboard vs surface drive HP comparison

    Are the HP ratings between SDs and traditional outboards comparable? Ie would you replace a 20-25hp outboard with a 22hp SD?

  • #2
    greenmachine,

    The use of a 20-25 hp outboard or an 18-23 hp surface drive depends on the conditions and what you're trying to accomplish. Power-wise, the delivery is different. I have owned no less than 20 different small outboard motors and surface drives. I have worked on no less than three dozen different outboards and surface drives over the past decade. Also, I've put away thousands upon thousands of lbs of caribou, salmon and moose with both types. Surface drives are slower, but deliver more load carrying torque. They're pushing a larger surface piecing prop at a slower speed. Traditional outboards of comparable hp have higher top end, rpms and go faster. If you are fishing or netting on large rivers like the kenai or tanana or yukon, etc, the traditional outboards with reverse are very handy. If you are traversing boulder and gravel strewn technical rivers with shallows, the surface drive will shine. It is beneficial to use and own both.

    Some have commented that the 18 hp may not be powerful enough, but they are plenty of power for anything I've needed. This past season, my 18 hp surface drive pushed 2000 lbs of equipment, one bull moose, four people and two bull caribou in about three trips on a shallow drought conditions river. On typically large freighter canoes, do not discount the lowly 15 hp evinrude/jonson/yamaha/tohatsu or other two strokes in this 75 lb range. Power to weight ratio, the portability of these gems will surprise yah. Same thing with the 8 hp two stroke on the smaller canoes, they're a 55 lb gem of ah powerhouse.

    I never stop experimenting and quantifying the physics of prop-propelled canoes. You learn something new every trip.
    www.freightercanoes.com www.copperheadalaska.com
    sigpic
    matnaggewinu

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    • #3
      thanks mainer was hoping you would chime in. if i can get this grumman freighter that i've been talking about for years that technically belongs to me but is about a 12 hour drive away, i'm looking for a motor for that, but with lifts being so hard to find I was thinking about the small copperhead. I would like to be traveling the tanana but with this setup it might be challenging . eventually i would like to get into a HB or one of your boats with a copperhead, but budget is not going to allow that this year and feeling the need to get on the water asap. I would like to be running nets so it is worth thinking about the reverse thing. but dont think i'll be doing that in a grumman.

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      • #4
        The weight of a small single cylinder copperhead exceeds the capacity of the narrow Grumman transom. It is not safe, nor do I recommend it. Stick with a 55 lb 8 hp two stroke motor. That way there, you'll not have to modify much. When body weight be pushed forward, with use of a tiller extension, your transom will ride high and dry.
        www.freightercanoes.com www.copperheadalaska.com
        sigpic
        matnaggewinu

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        • #5
          duly noted and much appreciated.
          Last edited by greenmachine; 05-06-2020, 15:34.

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          • #6
            I ran a 9.9 Merc 2 stroke on a Grumman 17' sq back for a number of years with no problems. You do need weight up front if you're alone. It also does pretty good with a 3.3 Merc if on flat water. Sold the Grumman in favor of an Esquif Cargo 17' and both Merc's will push it almost as good as the alum boat. Loved the Grumman but the Cargo better. Might build a surface drive some day but too many projects ahead of it now.

            Happy Spring to you folks up North!!
            Somewhere along the way I have lost the ability to act politically correct. If you should find it, please feel free to keep it.

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            • #7
              thanks lowrider. was also looking at building a surface drive but figure better to keep it cheap this year and save up for the boat i really want rather than blow half my budget on a compromise. think i'll pick up a small outboard and a lift if i can find one. eventually like to get in a bigger freighter with SD motor.

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              • #8
                Well there we go. Going to take some getting used to driving this tiller extension and lift, but glad to be on the water

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