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Author Topic:   Power options for 22 Dauntless
fnbray posted 08-27-2001 01:47 PM ET (US)   Profile for fnbray   Send Email to fnbray  
I will be ordering a 2002 22 Dauntless for delivery circa May. I was going to go with the optimax 225 but--given all the horror stories--I am looking for other options. Called Honda today and the guy said that the new 200/225 four stroke's goal (weight has not been announced) is to weigh under 600 pound. Can a 22 Dauntless take this weight? What engine would you buy? Don't want my scuppers under H20. Thanks, FB
Jurisproodenz posted 08-27-2001 02:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for Jurisproodenz  Send Email to Jurisproodenz     
The Honda BF225 (according to the latest drivel in the boating mags) is weigh in at 590 and the Yamaha F225 at 585. The 225 Merc Optimax (a pox on it) is supposed to weigh in at 525 or so. The Yamaha HPDI 200 is reputed to weigh in at 485.

So I guess your question can be split into a couple of sub-issues: do you want 4 stroke; are you set on a DFI-type engine; or would a simpler EFI do the trick?

The boat is spec'd with a 200 Opti (a pox on it) so you can be sure that the boat is designed to accept the weight of 225 Opti (a pox on it). The question with regards to a four stroke is then: "Will the extra 60-65 pounds make a substantive difference?" My eight year old weighs 65 pounds.... And, not to forget this, "do I want to take a gamble on new technology?" Practically, get an adult to sit on the transom of a Dauntless rigged and in the water and look -- does this affect the trim such that I'd be shy about it or not? No doubt some of the more technically-minded will pitch in about balance, time to plane, angle out of the hole etc., but that should probably do you.

That being said, you can save 100 pounds going for the HPDI 200 Yammy, sacrificing a few top-end mph and gaining some fuel savings. It all adds up. The EFI Merc and Yammy are cheaper still and similarly svelte, but greedier on fuel.

Assuming the boat can take all you want to give it, then there is the price factor. The Yamaha F225 is going to retail at $17,440 or so and don't expect any discount. The Honda, however, while it will list in similar territory might be available for as little as $14,500 (according to a dealer that I spoke with last week). But not until Christmas at the earliest.

Personally, I'd make the plunge for an extra few grand and take a four stroker. Quiet and smoke free. If you can wait, I'd do the Honda and take the risk on the weight and pocket the cash versus the Yamaha. Also, I have yet to hear any horror stories about ANY Honda product insofar as it relates to motors. That certainly cannot be said about Yamaha and Mercury, well, ... they make a really good EFI. Ficht -- it rhymes (until proven otherwise by brave souls and not by me).

That's my two cents.

fnbray posted 08-27-2001 02:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for fnbray  Send Email to fnbray     
Dear Jurisproodenz: Thanks for the quick reply. I favor a four-stroke myself. FB
lhg posted 08-27-2001 03:36 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
You are facing the new dilemma regarding the big outboards. DFI's, all brands, including Yamaha. More risk of trouble than they're worth. Four strokes. Barely available, and way too new. More unknown risk of trouble, also, then they're worth right now, even though the small 4 strokes seem good. Both of these new technologies need more time. At least another year of letting the poor consumer be the "test pilot".

That leaves you with the proven and HIGHLY reliable 2 stroke EFI's. In the 225 HP range I recommend for a 22 Dauntless, that leaves you with Mercury and Yamaha. Both excellent, but the Merc is more powerful and faster. Unless you plan on spending all of your boating time at idle speed or trolling, I just don't see the smoke problem. These engines have been given a bad name by all the new marketing hype, just like the Classic Whalers were. All done in the effort of selling the new product at the expense of the old. Don't fall for it.

But I've had a great season of boating, fishing and cruising, all with my "smoke at idle" EFI's that run & run. This beats a season of no boating with my "no smoke" DFI's. One has to determine what their priorities are.

bigz posted 08-27-2001 04:33 PM ET (US)     Profile for bigz    
Guess the "priority" is that if you spend $10-12k on an EFI it isn't going to be worth much in another year and in two short years close to zip compared to either a 4 stroke or DFI.

As you say LHG as the market swings, hype or no hype, consumers will want the 4 strokes or DFI's on their new or used boat purchase.

If fanbray is looking to purchase a 2002 for May delivery and settle to have the dealer get the boat "unpackage-d" for something other than a Mercury, he has plenty of time to shop for the right motor at a good price I would think.

Just a note to Juris --- the Yamaha or Honda in 4 stroke I agree good choices--- maybe --- they're newbies on the seen too, as LHG points out!

I do disagree with Juris assessment of pricing. Believe me if Honda will price around $15k so will Yamaha --- then figure another $1k in rigging cost at the minimum.

Also, Juris would like to mention the 2001 Ficht's in the 200 to 250 range are doing fine with few if any problems. We know the glitches that have been publicized and fixed for owners ASP in just about all cases since 1998 --- can't say the same for Opti's now can we ;) ! So unless you have first hand experience with Ficht motors (you wouldn't make a statement as you did if you did) try and not base statements on hear say -- to much of that in this industry. The 225hp Ficht weights 508lb. Tom

DCPeters posted 08-27-2001 05:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for DCPeters  Send Email to DCPeters     
Up here there are 2 leftover 2000 22', one conquest, one dauntless. Both have 130 hondas. Isn't this way underpowered?
DCPeters posted 08-27-2001 05:50 PM ET (US)     Profile for DCPeters  Send Email to DCPeters     
Up here there are 2 leftover 2000 22', one conquest, one dauntless. Both have 130 hondas. Isn't this way underpowered?
lhg posted 08-27-2001 06:22 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Tom - thanks for your above comments and insight, which always makes for good reading, but in the case of the EFI's, I respectfully disagree. I'm not sure they will be worthless at all. Any lighter weight and maintenance free engine is worth something from what I can tell. Maintenance free outboards help sell used boats. Lemons don't. Besides, when one buys outboards, especially the 200's and up, one usually plans to keep them until they're basically worthless anyway, no matter what style of engine it is. There is other recent discussion about NADA & BUC artificial de-valuations when you go to sell an outboard. Right now, the EFI's are worth more than the DFI's, if a buyer is at all informed. I think ten years from now, a conventional two stroke will be less valuable, but first reliable DFI's and 4 strokes have to be out there for a while, to earn their higher valuations. The recent troubles have set back full acceptance by the market for several years. And weight continues to plague the technology.

After all, what is THE most important consideration with an engine, any engine, whether it be automotive, marine or aviation? Reliable performance. The thing first and foremost, must run, give you trouble free and hassle free boating enjoyment, and get you home (or back on land). Gas mileage and idle smoke are less important. This past Winter/Spring, used Fichts were literally untradeable at most Dealerships, in spite of the clean technology.

Take a person trying to sell, for instance, a used 2 year old Whaler with a 3 litre Optimax on it! Well, good luck! That's a bath in the making. The boat would sell much easier with an EFI. I wonder what Juris thinks about his ability to unload his Whaler with the twin Opti's? If it had twin 225 EFI's, he could sell it right away and not take a bath. I have run my twin Merc 200 EFI's for 4 years now, 12 months of the year, about 1000 hours on them, and they are the finest outboards I have ever owned or run, period. Quiet, smooth and dependable. After having EFI, I would never buy another carburated engine, any size. I do not know of anybody, with a functioning large 2 stroke, carb or EFI, rushing to trade it in on a DFI. I do not yet believe that DFI is a permanent solution to the emissions situation, but rather a short term fix until the 4 strokes take over. At least it looks that way right now! Why in the world are Mercury and Yamaha, both DFI companies, racing to get the 4 stroke 225/250's out? Wonder what they're not telling us about DFI's. Or has the big Optimax & Ficht already told us? The Japanese don't let much get by them. If it's good, they go for it and copy, or bring out their own versions. Where are the Suzuki and Honda DFI's? Yamaha's is basically dead as their long term solution to emissions, having their own HPDI problems, and they make no pretensions that 4 strokes are their future also. It will be interesting to see if Bombardier can even survive, hanging their hat on just DFI Fichts to compete with the 4 strokes of Merc and the Japanese. I think if they don't immediately start developing 4 strokes, they're history in the outboard world. But I'm betting they already have them on the drawing board! But to say so, would doom the Ficht engines they have just purchased. So time will tell, but until it does, big EFI 2 strokes will still be in demand until 2005. They are much quieter to run than the Optimax's, also.

Well, that's my crystal ball vision for today.

Dick posted 08-27-2001 07:21 PM ET (US)     Profile for Dick  Send Email to Dick     
Bombardier allready has 4 stroke technology with Rotax. They have just announced a 2002 Sea Doo with a Rotax 3 cylinder 1494 CC 4 stroke. Wouldn't surprise me if they were allready working on an outboard version.
Jurisproodenz posted 08-28-2001 06:04 PM ET (US)     Profile for Jurisproodenz  Send Email to Jurisproodenz     
Respectfully, I dissent:

The Fichts ... simply too much water under the bridge. I have read some of the other forums and read about some happy owners and some extraordinarily unhappy ones. As a potential investment for your new boat, I'd respectfully think that putting Fichts on would be nuts! The reputation, whether currently deserved or not, is such that the resale has got to be hurt. However, not owning one, how can I go by anything other than hearsay? Did all the failures really happen? Did Bombardier really solve their issues? Does it appear, again by hearsay, that larger block DFIs are prone to engineering failure?

As previously stated, until proven by braver souls than me ... and that contemplates financially brave as well as mechanically. I've been there -- I own two large and worthless engines the problems of which the manufacturer claims to have "fixed" several times already. Brave indeed. If I had to try and sell my boat today, I'd realize probably 50 cents on the dollar, exclusively due to the perception (I belive it to be correct too) that those engines are too dangerous to take offshore (and that's when they work). Maybe two years from now the new generation Fichts will have proved themselves. Maybe not. Wanna shell out $15,000 (in my case $30 large) to try it out?

As to pricing, (out of morbid curiosity -- in my situation I am pretty well locked into Mercs and consequently look to EFIs as my solution AND I know that they will work trolling for tuna 50 miles offshore, price, residuals and efficiency be damned) I talked to Yamaha dealers and Honda dealers in the Boston area about four strokes. Honda has only one dealer in Gloucester and one in Duxbury that are on the water, each at least 30 miles by sea. The guy in Dedham would want me to trailer my 26 for installation and service - right, Earth to Dedham, come in. Yamaha dealers are like fleas on a dog here -- no problem finding one.

The Yamaha dealers refused to even discuss a discount. The Honda dealers were ready to discuss the matter right upfront even though final pricing has not been released. I think that the perception is that Yamaha has a more established dealer network, more experience in larger displacement outboards and can consequently command a higher price. At least here in the Boston area. Will Yamaha dealers will automatically match Honda discounts? Perhaps in your neck of the woods. But, people pay over the sticker for BMWs and Mercedes while cars as good or better roll off Lexus and Acura lots after a tidy deal and a lower sticker -- every day.

I guess that this make it 4 cents.

lhg posted 08-28-2001 06:53 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Juris: A well presented argument, but then again that's your occupation! I agree with you completely, and if you come up with a pair of Merc 225 or 250 EFI's, I think you'll be very happy with them.

I know that one of our other members here, Louie Kokinis, has this engine on his 22 Guardian (see Cetacea section) and likes it. You might get in touch with him for his experience with the model. According to Merc's prop charts, they are also more powerful than the 225 Optimax's.

TheWiskey posted 11-09-2001 10:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for TheWiskey  Send Email to TheWiskey     
I was in the same predicament some time ago. ( 6 months)
I decided to go with the Yamaha 225 Carburetor. In this part of the world the gas is not clean and I will be taking the boat to Los Roques, a very far out archipelago off the Venezuelan coast. The reputation that these engines have in Venezuela is that it does not break. Perhaps it is the simpler fuel system or just sound construction, in any case, I put a deposit down for 50% and I will pay the other 50% once the engine is installed.


jbtaz posted 11-09-2001 11:35 AM ET (US)     Profile for jbtaz  Send Email to jbtaz     
I agree, I wouldn't pay out 15k+ for new Fichts and take a chance on them being reliable and trouble free.
blackdog posted 11-14-2001 05:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for blackdog  Send Email to blackdog     
22 Dauntless in Exton PA 36,000

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