Outboard - what do I need?



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am thinking to get a outboard motor for my 14.2, not sure what I really need. I am thinking to get a Honda 4 stroke 2HP. IS it enough power for moving around in tight spot and or when the wind dies down? Should I get a long and short shaft? TIA.



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More archived information that I have been meaning to post:

Outboard Motor Options for the Capri 14.2
There are several factors in considering which is the best motor. These are power, weight, cost, shaft length, integral or external fuel tank, gear shift, and 2 or 4 stroke.

Power - In my opinion, 2 hp is more than enough for a 327 lb. Capri 14.2. I once owned a 22’ keel boat, weighing in at 2500 lbs, and my 4 hp motor was fine for that. So lets say 2 hp is OK for the Capri.

Weight - Anything under 30 pounds should be easy to mount and unmount.
Cost - For discussion puposes, lets shoot for $800 or less.

Shaft Length - If you want to mount the motor on top of the transom (see more on this below), then a long shaft (25�) is essential. (Shaft length is measured from the top of the bracket to the tip of the shaft.)

Fuel Tank - My choice for simplicity is one with an integral tank, mainly because there’s no good place to put an external tank in the Capri 14.2 cockpit.

Gear Shift - Although a shifter is useful, I don’t think it’s really needed for just a simple, get-me-home motor. This is not a keel boat, where you sometimes must throw a powerful engine in reverse just before crunching a dock. So I say no shifter. Just come up slowly, kill the power, and drift up to the dock. This ain’t the Titantic, dude.

Two Stroke or Four Stroke - Definitely four stroke. Have you used one? They’re wonderfully smooth, more fuel efficient, quiet, and much less polluting than 2 strokes. And you don’t have to mix the fuel.

Da Bottom Line - So let’s open the envelope and see which motor meets these criteria. Okay...ta da...the only one is the Honda! (Model BF2) It has 2 hp, four cycles, weighs 27 lbs., has a shaft length of 20� or 25�, costs $809, has no shifter, and has an integral tank.

Motor Mount - What to use? Catalina will sell you a fancy mount, but I don’t think it’s needed. You can mount the motor on top of the transom, on either the port or starboard side. (Steer with the tiller.) Make sure it’s far enough to one side so the rudder can’t touch the prop. Only don’t clamp the motor right to the fiberglass transom. I’d glue and/or screw a pair of thin (say 3/8� or 1/2� thick) oak pieces to the transom on each side of where the clamps would go. This gives a more secure grip for the clamps and doesn’t screw up the fiberglass. The width and height of the oak pieces depends on the motor and clamp configuration, but they will probably end up measuring about 5� x 10�.

One reader sent this: “I use a Fulton 380321 adjustable bracket with a Fulton transom adapter. The bracket slips out of the adapter when not in use. I drilled two new holes in the adapter just below the top two so that I could through bolt through the Capri's internally reinforced area on the Port side of the boat. The adjustable bracket lets me skim shallow in low water areas and place the motor deep into the water when waves are running high (though I seldom need a motor when waves are high). Cheapest source is C-ME marine but they often run low on supply (they have an 800 number and a website - ship UPS from Buffalo).�
I keep a paddle in the forward cuddy for that rare time I need some power. The weight of even a small outboard would really decrease the fun factor of the boat.
I'm guessing with fuel and a bracket your going to carry around at least an extra 35 pounds on the stern.
Do a search on motor to see past posts.

I keep 2 paddles in the cuddy. However, I sail solo most times and I have not perfected paddling solo yet. I have a 36Lbs thrust trolling motor.

It was a beautiful, sunny day with some wind, when the wind suddenly died down and thunder and lightning moved in! I was caught in the middle of the lake. I am quite sure that I made it to the dock faster than if I was paddling. As it was I was loading the boat onto the trailer and lightning was hitting far too close for comfort.

I have tried to paddle the Capri solo, and discovered that if you paddle over the side that you can go in very tight circles. If you try to switch from side to side it goes a little more straight, but between the fact that you are dizzy from hitting your head on the boom and that you can't see because the main sail keeps covering your head, you really do not get to go the direction that you intend.

Don't get me wrong, I hate the fact the I need to carry the additional weight (especially the battery), but I need some extra comfort that I can get back to the dock under power if required. In addition, the concern of capsizing awith the battery is always present.

The 36 LBS trolling motor is good for the lakes that I sail in. I do not know how well it would do is there was a current or strong wind .........yet.

I would eventually like to position the battery either just inside or just outside of the cuddy. It is too heavy near the stern.

Sometime I would like to try the following- tie the tiller to the hiking straps (to hold it straight), climb out and lie the bow and paddle from there. I saw this done by another sailer this weekend with bare poles and it seemed to work. I am not sure how far you could go this way though.

Art Jaeger
Smoetimes you may get into a cove etc. with a lee shore. This happened to me once and I could not paddle out even with two of us paddling with all our strength. The only way out was dead into the wind and there was no room to get on a tack or anything and the wind was about 10-12 mph. We ended up having to tie off to a dock and wait for a friendly soul in a bass boat to come by and give us a tow out of the cove. After that I decided to go with an outboard(about 24 lbs total). It has certainly made it more enjoyable for me. Its also handy when a storm comes upon you very quickly and you want to get off the lake in a hurry.
Paddling C14

Paddling a C14 is difficult compared to paddling my 14 ft Canoe. The trick is to use as long a paddle as you can store in the boat, and have your crew steer with the rudder as you paddle (of vice versa}, or if solo to tie off the tiller with a bungie or line to the hiking strap to keep rudder in line with the boat. Using a combined draw stroke where you reach out and pull in as you pull back, and maybe some torquing outward on the back stroke keeps the hull fairly straight in calm water. We sometimes have to paddle maybe a half mile from our launch site to get to some wind to take us to the start line at Lake Pleasant where we race Portmouth with the Arizona Yacht Club, or maybe even further returning the the launch site if the wind dies after racing. Fortunately the larger AYC sailboats often take pity and tow us with their motors, sometimes making a line of a "mother duck" and her 5 or 6 "ducklings". Once we're in wind, we never need the paddle, except perhaps at the dock to avoid some of the many power boats. In my way of thinking, the best use of a motor on a C14 would be to go out of San Diego and troll for Marlin! Dick K.
What happens to you motor guys when you capsize? I'd think you'd have a real mess...

To paddle the boat solo, sit all the way aft and paddle. You can paddle on one side of the boat and then across the transome to keep it going straight (not side to side). Its not a motor, but it does work.
I don't know what would happen. I have been lucky so far and not had the experience of capsizing. It probably depends on the direction of capsize. If it turned over to port then the motor would be out of the water. To starboard it would probably get wet.,but my motor is pretty simple and it shouldn't hurt it too bad. I would probably have to pull it a few times to blow any water out that got in. We use a paddle too(especially if we are just drifting waiting on some wind). I just remember being trapped in a narrow cove for 1 1/2 hours because the only way out was into the wind and we paddled like crazy for 10-15 minutes and only gained about 25 feet and as soon as we tired the wind blew us right back where we were at in about a minute. We used a paddle only up until that time, but a nice day of sailing was spoiled by that change in wind direction and velocity. If that guy in power boat had not come along when he did, we might have been there all day, it sure was frustrating. Its nice to have the motor if you need it. Most of the time it stays kicked up like it is in my little avatar photo.
Determine correct shaft

This thread was extremely informative. I am sailing primarily on small lakes and the wind simply dies. I am going with a Honda 2hp but I do need to better understand the point about long vs. short shaft.

My catalina came with motor mount already installed.

How do you measure properly to determine the shaft length that should be mounted?
Take a look at this link http://www.honda-marine.com/mar_pages/bf2.htm
There you will see owners manuals for the Honda engines. Look at the installation section and it describes how to determine the shaft length required.

This what I found for a Nissan Motor at http://www.duxboats.com/motor_faq.htm#Q17

How can I tell what shaft length my outboard needs to be?
Measure from the top of your transom to the bottom of your keel. If it is from 14" to 16" long you'll need to get a Nissan outboard with a "short" shaft. If it is from 17" to 22" long you'll need our "long" shaft outboard. Nissan outboard shafts are measured from the bottom of the engine mounting bracket to the cavitation plate on the lower unit. Generally most boats need either a short or long shaft although some boats require a 25" shaft (ultra-long shaft) outboard.

I Stood on the side of the boat and I measured from the top of the motor mount to an imaginary line that extends from the water line. Mine was about 16 inches

I turned my bracket 180 degrees to put the motor in the water a bit more.

I have not tried my Nissan 3.5 hp yet.

You definitely want the Anti- cavitation plate in the water by at least 2 inches (Honda says 4 inches) so the water pump impeller is submerged.

I believe that you would be ok with the short shaft, but measure and ask the dealer.

By the way, I think that you will find that the factory installs the mount on the port side. This side of the transom seems to have a solid soundwhen you knock on it compared to the starboard side.
how to paddle a c14

The way I found for paddling my boat is to sit on the bow with your toes in the water with the center board down a couple of inches and just baddli like a canoe. No problem getting around the docks but people do tend to look at you funny


Does this work when the wind is blowing? I tried this method once when it was a bit windy (not too much wind mind you, just steady wind) and completely lost control and ended up on the rocks. Perhaps because I didn't have the centerboard down?

Also, what do you do with the rudder? Leave it down? Lash it in the center?
I just bought an Honda out board with 2 horses. It seems short shaft just fine. I tried long shaft it is way too long in my case. HTH for everyone. I will post some pic later.

I would have to take exception to the 36lb thrust trolling motor being adequate. I was out Saturday in light, shifty winds. I have a 35lb trolling motor as well. We got in a little too close to some boats at the docks, and the little trolling motor just didn't have enough guts to get us moving away from those boats. It's not quite as bad in forward as it is in reverse. But, I think you'd be hard pressed to feel it moved the boat with any "authority" in any direction.

We did "motor" for a little while to get back to the dock at one point. I don't think this motor had enough power find any kind of head wind at all.

I'm already looking for a bigger motor to be a little more of the safe side.

I agree, ideally I would be a good enough sailor to not need a motor at all. But, that's just not the case, at least not yet.

I will say this though. The guy that had the boat before me set it up right. The battery is in the cuddy, and there is a weather-proof plug in the aft end of the port bench. The trolling motor had the matching male plug. He even made a plate the has the same plug going to two copper posts so I can charge the battery in the boat. Which is good because, trust me, you do NOT want to be lifting that deep cycle battery in and out of the cuddy very much!! If you're going to use a trolling motor, I'd set it up like this. And make it something bigger than 36lb thrust.

Be sure to leave the cusddy door open while charging to exhaust any gas that is created from charging.

I have used a 36Lbs trolling motor. I found the trolling motor to be sufficient in light or no wind.

Because I was not happy with the weight and the charging of the battery etc.. I purchased a Nissan 3.5 hp.

I had it out this weekend and it moved the boat against fairly strong wind at very low throttle.

I have made the same mistake with both the trolling motor and the Nissan, I had the centerboard nearly all the way up...bad...

You need the center board down at least partially while motoring in wind.

I second that...I did the same thing in a very light breeze and ended up almost hitting a couple of docked boats.

ALWAYS have the centerboard at least partially down when motoring.
I'll put my two cents worth in for the Honda 2hp motor. I sailed my Capri 14.2 for the first time on Saturday and found the motor was useful in getting me out of a few tight spots - oh those shallow waters on the shores of the Chesapeake Bay. I bought the motor for the following reasons:

1. It's self contained - no separate gas tank or battery.
2. No gas and oil mixing.
3. Light weight
4. And althought there are no gears, it spins around for reverse.
5. Plenty of power for the Capri 14.2

You definitely need the long shaft.
Althought I would perfer not to sail with it I need it to get out to the Bay from where it is docked.
Ok... Is 40# thrust enough or do I need more?

I have been listening on this thread and I have a problem. I had a 28# thrust and could not get it to turn into the wind. I like to go out with the jib up to avoid loosing the hanks off the front stay. The main starts down. I want to put it up while under power into the wind. I often work with 5-15 MPH winds. Is 40# enough, 55#?

I need advice!!!

I'm still of a mind that 28lb is NOT enough to adequately control the boat. It takes forever to get moving enough so that you have enough steerage to maneuver. My trolling motor is a 36lb, and I'm not happy with it.

And if you forget to drop the centerboard...Forget it!! It's almost impossible to control. With any kind of wind, even bare poles are going to push you sideways. But, with the centerboard down, you can turn the trolling motor and the boat just about turns around in it's own length.

Where are you sailing? Last time I was out on Cowan Lake. I sailed away from the docks at the west end of the lake and sailed right up to the same docks when I was ready to leave. It appeared as if I actually knew what I was doing!:D

I sail out of Kent's Harbor at Brookville Lake in Liberty, IN.

Kent's is very busy, with a lot of boat traffic in tight quarters.

Once on the lake the wind is high and if the boat is not into the wind raising the sail is near imposible.

Thanks and good to hear from you!