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Author Topic:   Experience with 35hp Merc on 13'
LiquidDiet posted 11-16-2002 06:06 PM ET (US)   Profile for LiquidDiet   Send Email to LiquidDiet  
any info about putting a mid 1980's 35hp Merc on the transom of a 13' sport (1979). Any performance and reliability data would be very helpful.
keltonkrew posted 11-17-2002 02:32 PM ET (US)     Profile for keltonkrew  Send Email to keltonkrew     
I have a 1986 Merc 35 on my 13'. Runs great. I'm running 10 1/8 x 15 pitch. I think I need to go to a 10 1/2 x 13 pitch for more hole shot. With 1 person, it gets on a plane fast and cruises. With 2 big people, cooler full of water and live shrimp, cooler full of ice for the fish we hope to catch, it takes a little bit to get on a plane, but once it does, cruises good. I have the fin on the cavitation plate. My merc has the power trim which is needed.
Bigshot posted 11-18-2002 10:28 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
That is an antiquated engine per say. Developed in the 60' and dropped in 1987 or so. The 35hp is from 1984 on and is basically an older 40hp. They are probably comparable to a modern 30hp. Perts are readily available, power trim is VERY rare and bulky. Good thing is most are electric start. It is a good motor but would not be my first choice. If under $600 take it if it runs good.
lhg posted 11-18-2002 06:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
As a Mercruy fan, and as an alternative opinion to Keltonkrew, I would say avoid the engine. I think it's one of the worst engines Mercury ever made. Klunky sounding and rough running at idle, and not very powerful. The 4 cylinder Merc 45/50 of the same generation, would blow it away, and idle like a sewing machine. The engine is one-third of Merc's famous in-line six, but in two cylinder application, it never performed.
Jay A posted 11-19-2002 12:38 AM ET (US)     Profile for Jay A    
I have a 1975 40hp Merc on my 1970 13' Whaler. Still going strong! ....Original prop too!
keltonkrew posted 11-19-2002 08:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for keltonkrew  Send Email to keltonkrew     

You are correct about the idle. It is not extremely smooth, but it runs better than a lot of others I've heard. One good thing about it is it starts immediately, even after sitting months w/out activity. It has the original power trim (yes, it is bulky and the hoses are expensive - just had to replace one after it shot oil all over the interior of my boat!

Granted, I wish I had more power, but this is what the boat came with and I can't spend the money to repower. I think if I go to a 13pitch prop, it will be fine. With the 15pitch, it will plane out nicely with quite a bit of weight (me=220, friend = 295 54qt cooler full of ice, 54qt cooler 1/2 full water/bait, 2 batteries, trolling motor, 6 gallons fuel, etc. That is quite a bit of weight and the 35 handles nicely.

However, after saying that, I would love to have more hp, but if you're getting a great deal on the 35 and it is a solid engine, I would power with it if I couldn't afford the big bucks for a newer, more powerful outboard.

andygere posted 11-19-2002 12:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for andygere  Send Email to andygere     
I owned the 40 hp version of that motor on my '72 13 and my advice would be to keep looking. When it ran, it was as fast as any 13/40 around, but it was plagued with problems: head gasket, ignition (expensive parts, not easy to get), lower unit problems, lousy carb, etc. etc. If it's packaged with the boat at a good price, then buy it and run it till you get fed up like I did. If you are thinking about buying it to put on a 13 you already own, I'd pass and find something else.
captbone posted 11-19-2002 12:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for captbone  Send Email to captbone     
I personally think that you should walk. In my eyes the best 40/50 hp is the 2cyl, 2 stroke johnrudes. You can find them cheap and parts will be cheap and available for the next several decades. You may pay alittle mre now, but in 2 summers when you are trying to find replacement parts and lossing half your summer and your shirt for the parts you will be happy you did. It is a deal but also a gamble, it could not ever break or die in 2 weeks. my 2 cents!
LiquidDiet posted 11-19-2002 05:23 PM ET (US)     Profile for LiquidDiet  Send Email to LiquidDiet     
thanks for the responses.
I am passing on the engine, even though it is a fair deal at the price i could get it for.
I loved my old 13 sport with a 40 Johnson, and I think I am just going to wait for an OMC, they are so reliable and easy to find parts for. Any help in locating a good one would be much appreciated.
captbone posted 11-20-2002 07:27 PM ET (US)     Profile for captbone  Send Email to captbone     
while you are looking, try and find the 48 spl or the 50 2 cyl,2 cyc johnrude. It weighs the same as the 40 with just alittle extra power for those heavy days, also power trim is a beautiful option.

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