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MONTAUK 17 Re-power with Suzuki DF60AV

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 10:31 am
by AZ1986
I need to re-power my 1986 Montauk 17. It has a 1986 Yamaha 70 HP; I love the way [the boat] performs, but [the engine] has low compression in bottom cylinder, and needs a new lower unit. I want to upgrade to a cleaner and more efficient four-stroke-power-cycle engine with electronic fuel injection.

[I have found] a Mercury 60 Command Thrust, which Whalertown in Grasonville, MD, recommends. It costs $7,250 installed [and weighs] 256-lbs.

I really like the Suzuki 60-HP three-cylinder, also a high thrust model. It costs $6,300 installed and weighs 227-lbs.

I really don't want to add more [engine weight] and the next-size-up engines would add at least 110-lbs.

I like to cruise the middle Chesapeake Bay, to Annapolis and home, the Eastern Shore and its rivers; [I like] joy riding and fishing, alone or maybe one to two other people, with light gear. Your opinion would be greatly appreciated. Kind regards--AZ1986

Re: Consider Yamaha F70

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 10:40 am
by RobertO
Did you consider the F70 Yamaha at 257-lbs? That would be my choice.

Re: Consider Yamaha F70

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 10:44 am
by AZ1986
Yes, I did consider the Yamaha 70, but the cost is $9,500 compared to $6,500--is that really worth it?

Re: Price difference between Suzuki and Yamaha

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 10:54 am
by RobertO
I wasn't aware of the substantial price difference. Between the two you listed. my choice would be the Suzuki at near 30-lbs lighter and around a grand cheaper.

Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 11:07 am
by AZ1986
That's what I am thinking. Thanks.

Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 11:26 am
by jimh
Go with the engine you "really like." But only if you also "really like" the dealer selling it and who will be servicing it in the future.

Your Yamaha 70-HP was rather small displacement, about 850-cc, and I don't think it was particularly a powerhouse. Moving down to 60-HP will decrease top speed and reduce acceleration. I don't think it would be tragically under-powered--as long as the crew weight is kept down--but you are approaching the absolute minimum power.

If you have any thought of selling the boat in the near future, having only 60-HP will make the boat-engine combination less attractive to buyers.

Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 12:19 pm
by AZ1986
[M]y next choice would be the 90 Suzuki-- but 343-lbs weight is a concern.

[T]he older Montauk only weighs 900-lbs bare.

I want to be in the open Chesapeake. I am concerned about freeboard in choppy seas, I guess.


Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 1:30 pm
by Whal
I have a Yamaha F70 on my 1999 Alert 17 and I love it. [Boat speed is] about 37-MPH at full throttle. [The Yamaha F70 engine] starts easily and almost makes gasoline--the most fuel efficient motor I ever had. I have had 15-HP-engines that seemed to use more gasoline.

Were I you, I would shop around at Yamaha dealers right now. I bought my Yamaha F70 in January of 2014 and I got a super deal on it, around $8,000 including mounting, a stainless steel propelr, and controls.

I know this is 2018, but I think you can get a better deal than you posted.

The price and the weight of the Suzuki 60 are tempting. I have also heard good things about the Mercury 60.

My first choice would be the Yamaha F70 if you can find a better deal. Shop around.

My second choice would be the Suzuki 60 because of the weight and price.

And the Mercury 60 would be my third choice.

For what you are planning to do, I think a 60-HP engine will work, but 70-HP would be nice. As for resale, a lot of people want a Montauk 17 with a newer Yamaha F70, and a 60-HP engine might be a deal-breaker for a lot of buyers.

In the end you only have to please yourself.

Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 3:12 pm
by frontier
School is still out on the long term quality of the China built 60 HP Mercury outboards. My experience with Suzuki is just average quality and dealer service.

Go with the F70 Yamaha. As the saying goes "Nobody was ever sorry they bought the best there was."

Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Thu Feb 01, 2018 2:00 am
by jimh
It is widely known that all of Brunswick's outboard engine of 75-HP or less are made in Asia. The lower horsepower range are all made for Brunswick by Tohatsu and branded as Mercury. They are made in Japan. Mercury also has a plant in China. Based on the comment (above) I guess the 60-HP is made in China.

Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Thu Feb 01, 2018 7:53 am
by Ridge Runner
I know you mentioned going to a four-stroke, but the Evinrude E-TEC 60-HP outboard would give you the same performance that you get from your current set-up which you stated that "you love". The E-TEC 60 has 863-cc in displacement and weights in at 240-lbs. A plus for me would be the extended maintenance schedule and not having to do oil changes.

Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Thu Feb 01, 2018 8:31 am
by rtk
I have a 1966 16 Boston Whaler with a 2013-production-year E-TEC 60. I have been running this boat and engine setup since 2015.

Ninety-percent of my use is for fishing inland and coastal waters. I usually fish alone, or with one person. I throw ice and gear in the [c.1966 16-footer]. With this load the [16-footer with 60-HP] performs adequately for my needs and reaches plane in a reasonable amount of time.

Top speed with [an E-TEC 60-HP] and a light load is 34-MPH--fast enough for me in this [older Boston Whaler 16-footer]. Unless sea conditions are like glass, boat speeds in excess of 30-MPH in this boat are just downright uncomfortable for this 52-year-old. An easy 20 to 25-MPH general operating speed is very much adequate for my needs.

On a couple of occasions I have had four or five people in the [c.1966 16-footer], or a load of gear for a week on an island, and the 60-HP was not adequate to efficiently push [the 16-foot Boston Whaler] onto plane or onto plane at all.

I love the set up because I only need a 12-gallon fuel tank, and fishing for a day typically only costs me six gallons of fuel. [The E-TEC 60] has also been 100-percent reliable, I am still fascinated with the way this engine literally starts on the first key turn no matter how long it has sat unused.

If I had a great need to have a bunch of folks and gear in the boat and needed the boat to run at high hydroplane speeds for skiing and tubing I would have chosen a 90-HP engine.

A big part of my choice was my local and reliable outboard engine dealer and maintenance shop. Great engine and great dealer support makes for great boating experience.


Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Thu Feb 01, 2018 8:59 am
by Seahorse
rtk wrote:I have a 1966 16 Boston Whaler with a 2013 production E-TEC 60...On a couple of occasions I have had four or five people in the [c.1966 16-footer], or a load of gear for a week on an island, and the 60-HP was not adequate to efficiently push [the 16-foot Boston Whaler] onto plane or onto plane at all.

Rich--What propeller do you have on the engine and what is the top RPM that it reaches with just yourself in the boat?

Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Thu Feb 01, 2018 9:21 am
by jimh
In any small boat, particularly a very light small boat like a c.1966 16-foot Boston Whaler, crew weight, particularly a crew of five adults, becomes an very significant part of the total boat weight. If a small and light boat is set up with a propeller appropriate for a crew of one, there is a good chance that same propeller will not be suitable for a crew of five.

Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Thu Feb 01, 2018 3:27 pm
by macfam
School still out on Mercury 60 EFI? Not for me.

Our 2008 Anniversary Edition Montauk 150 is entering its tenth season. The China-assembled 60 EFI has been a strong performer with zero problems--fuel sipping, quiet, easy to maintain, runs as new, dealers and service easily available virtually everywhere.

School can now be in recess.

Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Fri Feb 02, 2018 8:31 am
by rtk
Seahorse--the propeller is a stock Evinrude aluminum 17-pitch three-blade propeller. Wide-open-throttle engine speed with light load [is] 5,950-RPM (the engine maximum), if I remember correctly. The gear ratio is 2.8:1 or 2.9:1, i.e., the intermediate-size gear case. Engine is mounted on a 5-inch set back bracket, and I would describe the engine mounting height to be conservative with the anti-ventilation plate about 2-inch above boat bottom parallel.

I also tried a Stilleto Bay Pro 1 13.25 X 15-pitch four-blade stainless propeller, and performance was no different (based on) on one run, with light load, in calm conditions.

I intended to play with engine height and propellers, but this set-up was so perfect for my general needs I have not played with it.

Yes, Jim is correct: even small variations of weight load in this boat do affect handling and performance.

I actual had the opportunity to run a same-hull boat with a E-TEC 90 a couple years older, when I was on Grindstone Island A couple years ago. The owners of the house purchased the boat new over 50 years ago. The acceleration and planing differences were dramatic. I also had a 90 E-TEC on my hull a while back.


Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 11:08 am
by Dutchman
macfam wrote:Our 2008 Anniversary Edition Montauk 150 is entering its tenth season. The China-assembled 60 EFI has been a strong performer with zero problems--fuel sipping, quiet, easy to maintain, runs as new, dealers and service easily available virtually everywhere.

Same here with our 60HP Mercury on the 2008. I thought Tohatsu (Japan) not China, but, no matter where made, she runs great and sips gasoline. Mercury did replace at no cost after original warranty ran out three coils in its fifth year.

For the original poster, I would go 70-HP. The old Montauk 17 weighs slightly less than my new Montauk 150. And 60-HP will not be enough for NICE all-round operation.

Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Thu Feb 08, 2018 12:45 pm
by macfam
Dutch--agreed! A 70-HP would be a good performer on the 17 Montauk.

Way back, I had a 1964 17 Nauset with a Mercury 70 two-stroke engine: a good balance with more than adequate power.
The only downside: it was WET--not nearly as dry as our 150 Montauk boats.

Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Mon Feb 12, 2018 10:41 pm
by mb1711
My 1998 Montauk had the original Mercury 75-HP two stroke. I just re-powered with a Mercury 90-HP FOURSTROKE Command Thrust.

The MONTAUK is a whole different boat now. It handles great, and will hit 45-MPH. [The new engine is] very quiet and uses way less fuel.

I also had Baystar steering installed.

The MONTAUK is now truly amazing. I am more excited about the boat now than when I bought it 20 years ago!

Re: New Engine Purchase Advice

Posted: Tue Feb 13, 2018 10:56 am
by jimh
Regarding the difference in fuel consumption between older two-stroke-power-cycle engines using carburetors or simple electrical fuel injection compared to modern engines of any sort of power cycle: modern engines will typically show very much improved fuel consumption rates at idle speed and lower operating speeds typical for propulsion of the boat below planing speed. When the boat is on plane, the modern engines generally show some improvement in fuel consumption compared to older engines, but the difference is much less than seen at idle and slow speed operation.

In an overall mix of operation, it is reasonable to expect that compared to legacy two-stroke-power-cycle engines with simple fuel induction methods, modern engines will reduce total fuel consumption by about 40 percent. This assumes the mix of operating speeds follows the usual boating model, often referred to as the ICOMIA duty cycle.

Details of the ICOMIA marine engine duty cycle are given in ICOMIA Standard 36-88.

Because the difference in fuel consumption between older and newer engines varies over a wide range depending on the engine speed, there can be a significant difference in the reported improvement in fuel economy when changing to a modern engine from a legacy engine. If a boat spends a disproportionate amount of time in the engine operating speed range where the improvement is the greatest, the new engine will appear to have dramatically reduced fuel consumption. If the a boat spends a disproportionate amount of time in the engine operating speed range where the improvement is the least, the new engine will still appear to reduce fuel consumption but at a much less dramatic change. The outcome depends very much on the nature of the boat usage.

Based on my own experience, for example, the fuel economy with my traditional two-stroke-power-cycle engine with six carburetors was worst at idle speeds, typically about 1.6-MPG, and best at optimum planing speeds, typically about 2.1-MPG. When changing to a modern engine, fuel economy at idle speeds improved more than six-fold or 500-percent, to about 10-MPG or a difference of more than 8-MPG. Fuel economy at optimum plane improved far less, to about 2.7-MPG, a difference of only 0.6-MPG or about 28-percent. The improvement at slow speeds was over 17-times greater in terms of percentage improvement. The overall fuel economy tracked over many seasons with the old engine was 1.85-MPG. The overall fuel economy with the new engine tracked on several week-long cruises is typically 2.8 to occasionally as high as 3.0-MPG. This suggests an improvement in fuel consumption in terms of distance to 2.8-MPG from 1.85-MPG was 51-percent.

In general the overall fuel economy will be proportional to the amount of fuel consumed at the various rates, not to time or distance at those rates of fuel consumption. This further tends to decrease the effect of a new engine's improved fuel economy at low speeds. For more about how to assess the average fuel mileage, see my article in the REFERENCE section:

Average Fuel Mileage: Proper Weighting Factors ... geMPG.html

The irony of improvement in fuel economy at low speeds is the less fuel consumed at low speeds the less effect that improvement has on the overall fuel economy. The article demonstrates that with an example.

It is clear that replacing a legacy outboard engine with a modern outboard engine will reduce fuel consumption if the same overall duty cycle for the engine is maintained. The percentage of reduction will likely be in the range of 40 to perhaps 50-percent. Of course, the economic impact of reduction in fuel will be determined by the price paid for the fuel and the total amount consumed. If you only consumed 100-gallons of fuel per season with the legacy engine and if the new engine reduced that to only 60-gallons, you would have saved the cost of 40-gallons of fuel. With gasoline fuel now selling in the range of $2 to $3 per gallon, the potential for fuel saving is very modest, only $80 to $120 per season. Considering the cost of a new engine could easily be $8,000, the notion that saving $80-per-season suggests that it will take 100 seasons of boating to recover the new engine cost in fuel savings.

In assessing the purchase of a modern engine, the economic effect of improved fuel economy can often be overemphasized. To have an engine that uses less fuel is certainly nice. Improved range and ability to cruise in remote areas where fuel docks are far apart and fuel is expensive is certainly enhanced by improved fuel economy. The general reduction in the volume of gasoline fuel being consumed is also appreciated. Even better, with a modern engine the exhaust gas emissions are extraordinary decreased and have a general benefit to the planet. But the economic effect of better fuel economy from a new modern outboard is only likely to have significant benefit if the boat is used for an unusually high amount of hours during which an unusually large amount of fuel is consumed.

Re: Bought Suzuki 60

Posted: Tue Mar 27, 2018 5:55 pm
by AZ1986
I bought a 250-lbs Suzuki DF60AV for $6,300 including a tachometer and installation. It consumes 1-GPH.

The MONTAUK 17 pops up on plane.

Thanks to all for your advice.

Re: MONTAUK 17 Re-power

Posted: Thu Mar 29, 2018 6:25 pm
by MarkCz
Please tell us more about your repower experience and prop choice. I have been nursing an old 1987 Mercury 2 stroke power cycle 70 hp for about a year now and would love to repower but spending $10,000 on a 90 hp etec or almost 8,500 on a Yamaha F70 doesn't make much sense to me unless I keep the boat for a long time. I considered a new Mercury 60 hp command thrust since I could re use my controls and save some money but I need to be able to plane at low speeds since I fish in choppy waters. What kind of loads do you carry?

Re: MONTAUK 17 Re-power

Posted: Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:54 pm
by AZ1986
[Editor's note: this article has been extensively revised from its original form, and two articles combined into one.]

The Yamaha F70 price quote was $9,500.

I purchased the SUZUKI DF60AV. It is like the Mercury 60-HP. The dealer Whalertown in Maryland recommends the Command Thrust. I bought the SUZUKI anyway.

The SUZUKI works great for me. The MONTAUK 17 stays on plane at low speeds, but it flies when I hit the throttle.

The propeller is a 13.5 x 15. The SUZUKI DF60AV accelerates to about 6000-RPM.

Let me know if you have any questions.


Re: MONTAUK 17 Re-power

Posted: Mon Apr 02, 2018 7:48 am
by rtk
I looked at the specifications for [SUZUKI DF60AV]: three-cylinders, four-valve-per-cylinder. The 2.42:1 gear ratio makes for a slick little engine. You can run a nice-size propeller with that gear case. And you cannot beat the price.

Looks like a great choice for the boat. I paid $6,800 rigged and out-the-door, non-current model year, for my E-TEC 60, and I thought that was an excellent price. ... F60AV.aspx

Best of luck with the set up!


Re: MONTAUK 17 Re-power

Posted: Mon Apr 02, 2018 10:36 am
by jimh
Let me summarize some of the very interesting data provided in this discussion regarding engines suitable for re-powering a MONTAUK 17.

The prices mentioned in this discussion are summarized below:

Yamaha F70 = $9,500 and $8,000
Mercury 60 Command Thrust = $7,250
Evinrude E-TEC 60 = $6,800
Suzuki DF60AV = $6,300 and $6,500

These prices are likely not directly comparable because they are from different dealers, may include different services (such as installation, rigging, propeller testing, height adjustment), may include various different accessories (such as gauges, propellers, new controls, new rigging), and may be offered under various promotions and incentives available at a particular time. But they are representative of quoted or actual prices recently mentioned for the several different engines by participants in this discussion.

The engine weights mentioned in this thread are summarized below:

Yamaha F70 = 257-lbs
Mercury 60 Command Thrust = 256-lbs
Evinrude E-TEC 60 = 240-lbs
Suzuki DF60AV = 250-lbs
Suzuki "90" = 343-lbs

Comparison of engines weights should take into account variations from use of "dry weight" or "lightest weight" qualifiers from the manufacturers, presence of oil lubricants in sumps or tanks, and presence of a propeller, rigging, or other common accessories.

The outcome of re-powering the particular MONTAUK 17 under discussion here with a SUZUKI DF60AV is summarized below:

Engine maximum speed = "about" 6,000-RPM
Boat maximum speed = "flies"
Boat minimum planing speed = "low"
Time to plane = "pops up"
Fuel flow rate = 1-GPH
Propeller dimensions = 13.5 x 15

Regarding assessments of performance, I re-post some comments from the introductory article for the PERFORMANCE forum which offer advice on what information is desired for performance evaluations:

Please give the following information about your boat and its present propeller:

--boat model, length, and year
--engine make, model, horsepower and year;
--engine recommended maximum full-throttle speed in RPM
--engine recommended optimum full throttle operating range in RPM
--propeller make, model, number of blades, diameter, and pitch
--data you already have collected about boat speed as a function of engine speed; this is best presented in a table instead of a narrative.

Re: MONTAUK 17 Re-power with Suzuki DF60AV

Posted: Mon Apr 02, 2018 6:10 pm
by AZ1986
[I re-wrote the test data from its original presentation which was a bit difficult to read due to unusual composition and punctuation--jimh]

Boat: 1986 Montauk 17 1986

Engine: 2018 production year SUZUKI DF60AV; full-throttle range 5,300 to 6,300-RPM; 8-hours engine run time. Cost was $6,300, and includes new controls, tachometer, propeller, and river test. Weight of engine is 253-lbs, including battery cables, but no lubricants or propeller. Oil capacity is three quarts.

Engine mounting height: lowest possible position.

Propeller: Suzuki 13.5 x 15 three-blade aluminum propeller

Test conditions:
--one 200-lbs person
--6-gallons fuel
Test results:
--engine accelerates to 5,800-RPM.

Test conditions:
--two persons 450-lbs
--6-gallon fuel
--minimum gear
--engine held at maximum throttle for 30-seconds
Test results:
--boat on plane
--engine accelerates to 3,000-RPM

Boat speed data: none

Re: MONTAUK 17 Re-power with Suzuki DF60AV

Posted: Fri Apr 13, 2018 10:11 am
by jimh
Thanks for the report on the performance of your MONTAUK 17 and SUZUKI DF60V. Without any information on the boat speed obtained, it will be difficult to assess the performance. If you are able to collect information on the boat speed at various engine speeds, please present that data in a tabular manner rather than in a narrative. I believe there will be considerable interest in learning more about the performance of this particular combination of boat and engine.

Re: MONTAUK 17 Re-power with Suzuki DF60AV

Posted: Sat Jun 16, 2018 7:43 pm
by AZ1986
[The MONTAUK 17 boat was] able to get 30-MPH top speed. This was with 6-gallons fuel, 300-lbs of crew, and [an engine speed of] 5800-RPM. The hull has a painted bottom.

Re: MONTAUK 17 Re-power with Suzuki DF60AV

Posted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 10:48 am
by Phil T
In reading this, I proffer your performance is poor. Two suggestions.

Raise the engine two holes - This is a DIY. See Retest the boat. Same weight and load. Repost wide open throttle (WOT) RPM's and speed. Assuming you will gain 2-3 mph.

Changing to a stainless steel prop will increase performance. Goal when running light and solo is 35 mph.

Re: MONTAUK 17 Re-power with Suzuki DF60AV

Posted: Sat Jun 23, 2018 9:56 pm
by AZ1986
Phil T-thank you for the advice.

[If the engine mounting height is raised to] two-holes-up, will [the propeller blades then] have cavitation?

Doing 30-MPH in the 17 Montauk felt like I was going a lot faster.

Thanks again for everyone's input. This is a great place