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  96' Johnson 48 HP, Good Motor?

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Author Topic:   96' Johnson 48 HP, Good Motor?
minimontauk posted 12-12-2002 12:20 PM ET (US)   Profile for minimontauk   Send Email to minimontauk  
I just bought an 87' 15' Sport CC with a 96' Johnson 48HP outboard with integral tilt mechanism. The engine was a leftover not sold till' 97'. The owner had already winterized it when I bought it, fogged the cylinders, drained lower end, etc., so I took a chance and bought the whole boat, motor, and trailer package without a trial run in the boat. There were three other guys salivating over it when I looked at it, none made an offer on the spot, so I lucked out.The engine appears to be immaculately maintained, the owner had all original receipts, repair invoices, shop manual,etc.,and claimed the engine ran like a top. The hull was in such good shape I probably would have bought it anyway. I am normally more cautious, but I just had to go for it. Any opinions on the long-term reliability of this engine? I am a passable back-yard mechanic on cars, but have no experience with boat engines. Did I screw up?
Bigshot posted 12-12-2002 02:57 PM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Depends on what you paid. Have you done a compression test yet? Motor should be fine. Great engine been making that basically since 1971. No VRO to screw up. Does it have power tilt? If not no biggie but always helps. I had one(1988) on my 15' Supersport and she hauled pretty good. Probaly about 37+mph. Weight effects it so with 4 guys you may wish you ad a 70 but with 1 or 2 people she cooks.
minimontauk posted 12-12-2002 08:37 PM ET (US)     Profile for minimontauk  Send Email to minimontauk     
The owner told me it compression tested at 148 psi (I think that was it), or two psi below original engine spec. He offered to dig out his compression guage on the spot to prove it, seemed sincere, so I took him at his word, didn't seem like he was BS'ing me. The engine has an electric tilt/trim with switches on the motor and on the throttle handle. The tilt motor seems to be built right in to the engine mounting bracket rather than a side mounted gadget. Seemed to work smoothly. I admit that my good impression was based mainly on appearance. No rust, no leaks, everthing under the motor cover gleamed like new.
jimh posted 12-13-2002 12:11 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
I am curious about your model. Is it a SPORT (small wooden side console) or a CENTER CONSOLE (small, low moulded center console) 15-foot hull?

The 15-foot hull with about 50-HP is a nice rig. You should be able to hit about 35-MPH when lightly loaded.

aubv posted 12-13-2002 08:12 AM ET (US)     Profile for aubv  Send Email to aubv     
I believe the larger Johnson and Evinrude engines that don't end in 5 or Zero are considered commercial engines.
Bigshot posted 12-13-2002 09:45 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Jimh...he has the Center console model.

That engine is NOT a commercial engine, part of the SPL line without VRO and PTnT but trim was optional on the 48 and standard on the 112's and the later 90 &115 SPL's. They also had less features than their 50hp counterparts but you would have to read the brochure to see what they are. The 48 might have the S.L.O.W. feature but might not. It also might have the older style ignition system, etc. It also might just be a non VRO 50hp.

minimontauk posted 12-13-2002 12:51 PM ET (US)     Profile for minimontauk  Send Email to minimontauk     
Man, you guys are talking Greek. What is VRO?
What's a S.L.O.W. feature? Looks like I need to study up on outboard engine design. Anyway, I'm taking delivery on the boat early next week. What happens when you fire up an engine that's had the cylinders fogged? Do you just let it run till' it burns off the oil? Will this foul the plugs? Anything else I should check out right away?
This is in fact a center console model, but the rear bench seat has been replaced with an aftermarket cooler seat.
Bigshot posted 12-13-2002 01:46 PM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
She'll smoke for a bit and may even foul the plugs but I doubt it. If you just want to hear it run and are gonna rewinterize it, don't change the plugs. If you are gonna bring it to FL for the winter change them after you put some time on it just to make sure the oil is gone. If winterizing, get some fogging fluid and follow directions. I like to run mine out of gas while fogging but on that 48 you might be able to get to the float bowl drains. To run it out of gas I disconnect the fuel line and time it. If it takes 1:10 to run out, I then reconnect the line, pump the bulb, disconnect the line and run it till I have about 20 seconds left. Then I fog until it dies. On that OMC you will find a red arrow like toggle on the side of a roundish black box. At the bottom is a tire valve. Get the OMC fogging spray that connects to the tire vale, therefore you do not have to remove the spark arrestor and fog each carb, it does it automatically....pretty cool huh.

VRO is oil injection(variable ratio oiling)

SLOW is a limp mode that when the VRO acts up or the engine gets too hot it will cut the engine to 2500rpms and use intermittent cylinders. Basically a sign to shut it down and see what gives or call Sea Tow. With a 2cyl I am not sure if available.

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