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Author Topic:   Repower 1998 21' conquest
pete r posted 01-28-2013 04:31 AM ET (US)   Profile for pete r   Send Email to pete r  
My 21 Conquest currently has a 1998 Mercury 225-HP two-cycle outboard engine. I find the motor has great power, but it's getting old. It's noisy and thirty. I feel we need a motor which is suitable for cruising and a bit of fishing. It needs to be quiet and economical.
Jefecinco posted 01-28-2013 09:54 AM ET (US)     Profile for Jefecinco  Send Email to Jefecinco     
Are you looking for recommendations?

If so, the Verado L4 200 HP engine could be a contender. If you go that way I believe you'll like the SmartCraft gauges and the fly by wire throttle and shift. I suspect the performance of the Verado 200 would be on par with an older Mercury two stroke 225 HP engine. An Opti would also be a possibility but they are a noisy compared to the Verado.

I'm sure an E-Tec would serve you very well if you prefer to stay with a two stroke and save a few pounds.

Honda, Suzuki, and Yamaha will all have an interesting offering for your boat if you have no objection to buying an offshore product.


jimh posted 01-28-2013 10:03 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
If you wanted to re-power your boat with another Mercury engine of 225-HP, your options would be limited to:

--Mercury OptiMax

--Mercury VERADO L6

Let's look at those two options.

The Mercury OptiMax may not fit your requirement that the engine be quiet. Of all presently available engines of 225-HP of any brand, I believe the Mercury Optimax is the loudest. Since you require a quiet engine, this may eliminate the Mercury OptiMax from consideration. Also, at 225-HP, the only model available seems to be Mercury OptiMax Pro XS 225-HP model. For some reason--that I do not quite understand--Mercury only offers a 225-HP model in this special racing motor style.

The Mercury VERADO 225-HP L6 engine is the other option. This engine will certainly meet your requirement for being quiet. The Mercury VERADO L6 engines are among the most quiet--indeed they might very well be the most quiet--outboard engines made today. However, fitting a Mercury VERADO 225-HP engine on your 21 CONQUEST transom may be a problem for two reasons: weight and rigging.

The weight of the Mercury VERADO 225-HP L6 engine is a staggering 635-lbs according to Mercury, but this weight seriously underestimates the actual total weight. With the VERADO L6 engine you will need to account for the weight of the mandatory electro-hydraulic boost pump. And, as usual, account for the weight of a propeller, the lubricants, and other rigging. I would estimate the actual weight of the VERADO installed will greater than 710-lbs. This is likely to be a substantial increase in the transom weight compared to your present engine.

A further drawback to re-powering your boat with a VERADO L6 is the significant change in rigging that will be necessary. First, your entire steering system will have to be totally overhauled and upgraded to accommodate the mandatory electro-hydraulic steering for the VERADO L6. If you presently have hydraulic steering, it may be possible to adapt your helm pump, but you will be likely to spend several thousand dollars for the steering upgrade. Also, with VERADO L6 you will have to tear out all your present controls and gauges, and replace them with the mandatory Mercury digital throttle and shift (DTS) controls, as well as mandatory Mercury SmartCraft digital instrumentation. I think you can probably expect the re-rigging to add about $3,000 in component costs and perhaps $1,000 in labor if you hire this rigging to be done. And you probably are going to be required to hire the rigging to be done by a certified Mercury VERADO dealer and mechanic, as this is the only way to get a VERADO installed. You need to find a specially qualified Mercury dealer who can perform this rigging. In my area, Southeast Michigan, where boating is enormously popular, I believe there is only one Mercury dealer presently certified and offering re-rigging of VERADO engines, out of more than a dozen Mercury dealers.

If you want to study more about the Mercury options of the OptiMax or VERADO, here is a good starting point:,40

martyn1075 posted 01-28-2013 02:09 PM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
It is too bad the new Mercury 150-HP FOURSTOKE (not VERADO) would not be enough. That engine would be a good fit for so many reasons other than the fact it is just shy of enough horsepower, probably. Most engines I have seen on this boat are 200-HP and I am sure it is for good reason. I would probably look to a four-cycle oubtoard enigne if powering new.


pete r posted 01-28-2013 05:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
I was hoping you could recommend the new Merc 150 as a practical solution. I rather fancy that new technology (light weight).
I have noticed many boats around 20' have the Honda 150HP pushing them. ???? Another motor I like the look of.

I really don't need the power of a 225 and even 200HP with the modern 4 stroke might be a slight overkill for my requirements.

There is also the price differences to consider. What do you get for under 20K.
I will then need to pay import costs on top of that.

L H G posted 01-28-2013 05:50 PM ET (US)     Profile for L H G    
I would think the 200 Verado would be the engine of choice for that repower. I recently saw one being installed on a Post Classic 21 Outrage and it looked beautiful. This engine is the same weight as 2-stroke 3.0 liter 200 DFI's on the market by either Mercury or Evinrude. Plus you get DTS controls.

If bottom line price is your objective, consider the 200 Optimax. Test drive one before you buy and you will see it's quieter running than you think, with best in category fuel economy. No 2-stroke will match the Verado however in quiet idling/running and acceleration/throttle response.
They are harsh in comparison.

pete r posted 01-28-2013 05:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
What might you pay for a 200 Verado
Jefecinco posted 01-29-2013 08:57 AM ET (US)     Profile for Jefecinco  Send Email to Jefecinco     

I apologize for my comment on offshore products. Obviously the US produces offshore products. I tend to forget we have an international membership.

As always, prices vary. For purposes of warranty, etc. you will probably be dependent upon your Australian Mercury Distributor. If not you'll need to find a discount dealer somewhere who has the expertise and willingness to handle an export sale and shipping.

An internet search may find a couple of dealers you can check with. The one that comes to mind for me is Ed's Marine in Virginia. I believe there is another discount dealer in Georgia. A search here on CW my yield some useful results and THT is another site to search.

Good luck.


pete r posted 01-29-2013 05:06 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Thanks Butch,
I have a mate in North Carolina, that's not far away from Ed's Superstore.
They appear to have some great prices.

I got a price of 21K for a 200HP Verado installed.

judging what I see at Ed's superstore I reckon I could save a couple of grand.

First thing, I will get my mechanic relook at my current motor to see why, when I took the boat out last weekend there was lose of power when I tried to get beyond a certain rev range.
When I tried to throtle the motor up to get the boat planing then the engine would stall. This continued to happen after numerous attempts.
I found I could only limp along to our destination at no more than say 10 knots. When ever I tried to slightly increase my speed I would hear a rattle noise coming from the engine (gear box like sound)and feel there was a power slip, so I had to back off again.
I suspect much of this problem is to do with the injectors, but then there is also my concern with the fuel leak into the engine well when I tilt the motor after motor has been running for a bit.
I find once this happens the motor is flooded and I can't start it for some time.

pete r posted 01-29-2013 07:31 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
When I say I got a price, I meant from a local Merc dealer.
pete r posted 01-29-2013 08:50 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Saw a mob on the net "Wholesale Outboards". Anyone know them. The seem to have extremely good prices?????
Commander Coo1 posted 01-29-2013 09:22 PM ET (US)     Profile for Commander Coo1  Send Email to Commander Coo1     
I have seen some very impressive numbers produced by the new Honda 250, I believe someone here with a 22' Classic outrage was getting about 5mpg at a slow cruise! not bad at all! How much weight is your transom rated for? your 225 must be 450-460lbs already, do you feel that an extra 150lbs would be OK?
pete r posted 01-29-2013 10:52 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
I bet the 250 it,s a beautiful motor, but I think you start to climb in price and you require a more advance steering system and the weight a consideration.

My wife likes the idea of going Honda and I fancy the 200HP 4 stroke

pete r posted 01-30-2013 12:05 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
I've just discovered the 250 Honda is similar in weight to the 200 Honda and is on sale for not much more...Hmmm!!!!
Frank O posted 01-30-2013 11:01 PM ET (US)     Profile for Frank O  Send Email to Frank O     
For what it's worth, the 1994 Mercury 225-HP carbureted two-stroke outboard on my 1995 Outrage 21 threw a rod a year ago. I was very interested in a 200-HP four-cylinder Verado, but my boat required an engine with an XXL shaft length unless I wanted to cut into the transom (no). A 6-cylinder Verado would have been too heavy. So I ended up with a new OptiMax 250-HP outboard. It's not as quiet as a Verado, but it's much quieter than my old carbureted two-stroke. It also sips gas by comparison. I'm also enjoying the SmartCraft instrument system. Overall, no regrets.

L H G posted 01-31-2013 01:08 AM ET (US)     Profile for L H G    
Frank - I saw a beautiful 1995 Outrage 21 this summer that had been repowered with a 250 Verado.
I spent some time talking to the owner and he really loved the setup. The boat handled the weight easily and the engine looked terrific on the boat. After all, this boat is rated for a pair of 150 V-6's, with weight of at least 800# combined. The weight of the 30" Verado was not a problem at all.
pete r posted 01-31-2013 01:19 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Thanks Frank,

I've been looking around the net and discovered a couple of scams. You know the saying "If the price is too good to be true, then it isn't true".

Seems there are no cheap offerings in the large Honda range, so I am now leaning back towards the 200 Verado.
I also think your motor could temp me too (great value).

I met a guy on the weekend, both he and his son bought new two of the same boats with your motor and they were very happy.

I like the idea of a light motor on the back of a boat, but I worry about the future of 2 stoke motors in this country.

Once the Government makes that sort of decision to ban 2 stokes, that's it. "We live in a nanny state".

martyn1075 posted 01-31-2013 02:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
If I had a chance to get a Honda either 200-250 I would go the 250. The 250 offers a new design not yet implemented in the other models. It also noted as being extremely efficient when burning fuel. There was another participant on this website that powered his 21-22 Whaler (can't remember the model) with one of these 250's and was achieving amazing results in MPG. It was quite mind-boggling actually and hands down better than current competitors.


martyn1075 posted 01-31-2013 02:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
I found the link, and it was a 22 Outrage that was rigged with the Honda 250!

pete r posted 01-31-2013 05:15 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Thanks Martyn,

I was hoping to keep the blinkers on and stay away from those more expensive and lovely beasts (250 Honda).
I had convinced myself to stick to hunting down a 200 Verado.
Interesting, I have just tried to get a price from Ed's Marine for a Merc Verado and they won't sell me one for the export market unless you buy it installed on a boat (dealer policy).

martyn1075 posted 01-31-2013 05:26 PM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
I understand, the silver beast are quite expensive and they tend not go on sale that often or at all it seems. I can't see why you wouldn't be happy with a new Verado. keep searching around there probably will be a few shops looking to make a deal coming into Spring.
boatdryver posted 02-01-2013 10:06 AM ET (US)     Profile for boatdryver  Send Email to boatdryver     
Martyn1075 says:

"I can't see why you wouldn't be happy with a new Verado. "

Here's some advice from the website:

"no dice...PLEASE DON'T BUY A VERADO IF THERE IS NO ONE CERTIFIED AROUND YOU....or a BMW, or a Lear Jet or a complex house alarm system...and on & on...

and if you say "but I can get it cheap", remember "cheap and broke does not equal more expensive and running"

This is esp written for our Canadian owners...."

I'm not Verado bashing; I have a Verado and couldn't be happier after 4 seasons.
But I think the above is good advice.


Frank O posted 02-02-2013 03:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for Frank O  Send Email to Frank O     
LHG, thanks for the report about the 1995 Outrage 21 with the 6-cylinder Verado. I imagine it can work, but mine has always seemed a little stern-heavy even with a 225-250HP two-stroke. As I recall, cost of the larger Verados was also a factor, and there was some discussion about having to find a location for pump for the steering system. Anyway, I started looking seriously at the OptiMax based on your recommendation, and appreciate your input when I was buying.
Frank O posted 02-02-2013 03:48 PM ET (US)     Profile for Frank O  Send Email to Frank O     
By the way, Larry, speaking of how engines look on the boat, here's a picture of mine with the new OptiMax:

I shared this with a co-worker who comes from the sailing world, who remarked on the "enormous" outboard.

There may be something going on here with the camera angle. The same way that fishermen hold the catch toward the camera for dimensional-amplification purposes ...

tmann45 posted 02-02-2013 05:19 PM ET (US)     Profile for tmann45  Send Email to tmann45     
WOW, Frank, that picture does make the OptiMax look rather large, looks bigger than my huge Yamaha 4.3L. Tom
Frank O posted 02-02-2013 05:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for Frank O  Send Email to Frank O     
Here's a page with a couple of pictures that put the size in better perspective. The OptiMax doesn't seem significantly larger than the older two-stroke:

By the way, on the noise issue, I noticed I have a couple of short videos of my old two-stroke and the OptiMax idling. Here's the old two-stroke (at age 15 years):

Here's the new OptiMax when we launched it after it was installed:

Obviously this is not a controlled comparison because the cameras and settings are different. To my ear the OptiMax idles more smoothly (I think Larry likened it to the sound of a sewing machine), whereas the older outboard sounded rougher. Also the OptiMax is much quieter at speed -- we used to have to shout over the old engine, not so now.

martyn1075 posted 02-02-2013 08:16 PM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
It sounds nice! I have always liked the sounds coming from my Optimax gen two motors and hope they continue to make noise. If they stop, that just cost more money. Lets not compare it to a four-cycle motor they still are much louder but for a two stroke I would say they are reasonable.


pete r posted 02-03-2013 05:33 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
I happen to check out a local boat show over the weekend. I noticed many 20' 1/2 cab boats had 150 Opt's and some had 150 Verados. I also saw bowriders of similar size with even smaller motors.
It wasn't until I got to the larger offshore aluminium plate boats (22' to 24') did I see 200 Opti, 200 Honda's and 250 Honda.
One guy I spoke to advised me to look at the Suzuki 175. He thouht it to be the best value motor in the range and it would suit the whaler, great power to weight and guiet.

When I got home I googled Suzuki and found many owners to be happy with the motor's reliability.

Mambo Minnow posted 02-03-2013 05:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for Mambo Minnow  Send Email to Mambo Minnow     
I have 200 HP on mine and would not go lower. Rated minimum is 150 HP and max is 250 HP. Dual console Ventura were OEM Verado 225 in later model years.
pete r posted 02-03-2013 06:28 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
jimh posted 02-04-2013 03:00 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Pete--I did not realize you were in Australia. That may affect many things. We often seen significant differences in prices and packages offered for engines in other areas compared to USA.

You mentioned having an interest in HONDA. You should give the HONDA a careful look. You may not be aware, but our own United States Coast Guard uses the HONDA BF225 as the standard outboard engine on its RESPONSE BOAT-SMALL. They have over 1,000 HONDA BF225 outboard engines in service on over 500 boats. Their contract requirements with the supplier demand that these outboard engines will run 4,000-hours before major overhaul. It is anecdotally reported that the HONDA BF-225 engines even exceed that, and are reported with 6,000-hours of operation without any major repair. That sort of record of reliability and durability is unmatched. They have just ordered 500 new boats and all of those will have twin HONDA engines. The continued use of the HONDA outboard on the standard boats of the United States Coast Guard seems to me to be a commitment to the demonstrated reliability and durability of the HONDA outboard engine.

Since quiet operation and fuel economy are two important concerns for you, I think you will find that the HONDA engine will deliver in both areas. I believe that due to the experience of producing automobile engines where fuel economy is paramount, HONDA seems to be able to deliver the best fuel economy of any outboard engine. Their fuel economy data is extremely impressive. You should look closely at HONDA for fuel economy.

For quiet operation you will not be disappointed with a HONDA. They are also very quiet engines. I do not know of any really reliable comparative data, but my impression of the HONDA when I hear them in operation is they are certain among the group of very quiet four-cycle engines.

Since you are much closer to Japan than the USA in terms of importing outboards, I suspect the HONDA may be more competitively priced in your market compared to USA products imported to Australia.

Regarding the smaller VERADO engine, I would strongly suggest you take a sea trial on a boat that has the four-cylinder VERADO before you decide to follow recommendations that specifically suggest that is the best engine for you. I was quite surprised that when I was on a sea trial of a boat with the four-cylinder VERADO that it did not display the same characteristics of low noise, vibration, and harshness (NVH) that I have so admired in the six-cylinder model. I have been on three sea trials with the four-cylinder VERADO. On one of those there was also aboard one of the most fervent Mercury supporters you will ever meet, and even he was surprised by the four-cylinder model's NVH characteristics. It is just not quite up to the standard set by the six-cylinder. You should be aware of the difference among these VERADO models.

The four-cylinder VERADO does not require the mandatory electro-hydraulic power boost steering, so it is somewhat easier to rig on an existing boat; you should be able to adapt your steering, if you presently have hydraulic steering that can handle a very heavy engine. You would still need to completely re-do the rigging. You would have to install Mercury's digital throttle and shift controls and their proprietary gauges.

I am very surprised that a 200-HP engine has been represented as "the engine of choice" when your boat currently has a 225-HP engine, particularly when so often we hear that powering a boat with plenty of horsepower is important. I don't know if giving up some horsepower just to fit a particular engine on the transom because it says "Mercury" is a reasonable argument. You can decide for yourself what horsepower you like. If you want less power, that is up to you. I wouldn't be swayed by recommendations to take less power just to get a particular model.

Are you considering any other brands besides HONDA, Suzuki, and Mercury?

pete r posted 02-04-2013 05:50 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Thanks Jim,
I have seen your observation of the 4 cylinder Verados when comparing the smoothness and quiet of the 6 in your earier posts.

Currently I'm swayed by the light weight of the 200 Verado over the 200 Honda and I feel there are better deals in the larger US market for Merc's. It seems one is paying an extra $1500 for a Honda.

My plan now is to spend time searching the web for deals and seek out negative performance information on the 200 Verado which will justify a change in direction.

It was weird when I looked at the Suzuki site the other night, how the owners were unaminous in support for their motor. Visit Merc sites and you don't see the same hoorah.

Jim, even though we are closer to Japan we don't have the buying power of the US market so when it comes to picking up a Honda at a reasonable price in Aus, it's pretty remote.

I mentioned earlier that my wife is a Honda fan. In the back of my mind I know I would be held accountable if I bought a dud Merc!!!

jimh posted 02-04-2013 10:06 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Hi Pete--It sounds like your outboard engine market is similar to ours: the Honda engines are priced at a premium. Here in the USA Mercury engines are typically less expensive than any other brand. This is engendered mainly by a few large dealers who apparently have high sales volume and low costs from Mercury, and who are able to skirt around the usual dealer agreements that limit sales to defined territories.

At the present moment I believe that there are many outboard engines on the market that are good choices. In the USA they are all covered by generous warranties. The differences in horsepower are very slim, a by-product of the careful emission regulations in which emission levels are defined by horsepower produced. This has tended to result in rather accurate power ratings. Those old stories told on the dock about certain brands having more horsepower--WINK-WINK--than shown on the cowling decals are relics of the 1960's. It might have been true 50 years ago, but not today.

Another influence on outboard engine purchase decisions should be the dealer that you buy from. Given the price of a 225-HP modern outboard engine, you will be handing over a lot of money. You should, at the least, choose a dealer that you feel comfortable with being involved in a purchase of this magnitude. I might mail-order a $100 bit of electronics, but I am not sure I would mail-order a $20,000 engine. And, of course, you want a dealer that is able to give proper support. No matter what brand you choose, you will need the support of a strong dealer to have a good experience. Proper installation and rigging are essential. In some models, notably the Mercury VERADO, only selected dealers who have been specially trained, qualified, or certified, can perform the installation and rigging. To bring the warranty coverage into force, you typically must comply with all the required installation and rigging details and have a dealer affirm that.

Good luck with your search. Having a modern outboard engine is really very satisfying. They start, idle, and run much smoother, much quieter, and more fuel efficiently than old outboards. And they produce much less air and water pollution.

martyn1075 posted 02-04-2013 01:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
"I mentioned earlier that my wife is a Honda fan. In the back of my mind I know I would be held accountable if I bought a dud Merc!!!"

Totally worth the extra $1500!!!

pete r posted 02-04-2013 11:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Do you think the latest Honda 250 is as good as the current spin marketing reports.
Is it a much improved motor than the 200HP ?

How much more would you expect to pay over a 200 Honda???

martyn1075 posted 02-05-2013 01:36 AM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
I wouldn't think it would be that much better than the other offerings but based on the data that was presented by another owner on this website it sure helps it cause. Now that's just one person so it may be hard to indicate that everyone would get similar comparison but hey even a whole 1-2 mpg less would still be impressive for a single engine on a fairly heavy 22 Whaler with Whaler Drive. They have decreased the weight a bit and the lower end has seen some improvements. The cowling shape has been changed to allow a certain amount of air flow which the system apparently thrives on.


martyn1075 posted 02-05-2013 01:43 AM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
To be clear I think its more than just the cowling design that draws the air required for the system. I'm sure it's quite advanced technology but its unique for that model line and something the other larger Hondas do not offer. A friend has twin Honda 200's on his Whaler and is very happy with his choice. I haven't heard one complaint yet he has been running them for about 6 years now (650 hours)
pete r posted 02-05-2013 04:38 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Six years and 650 hours....Not bad, I reckon I'll take his opinion onboard, but I really want to know more about that big Silver bullet.
Peter posted 02-05-2013 07:06 AM ET (US)     Profile for Peter  Send Email to Peter     
Your current outboard weighs about 450 lbs. In 1998, there were no 600+ lb 225 HP outboards so I don't think that Whaler was contemplating that kind of weight on the 21 Conquest transom.

There have been reports of water entering the exhaust system on some Honda V6 motors. With a Honda V6 motor, I think you need to pay close attention to how high the powerhead will be above the water line on your boat. If its weight on the transom would cause the boat to be stern heavy and the powerhead low to the water line, then it might be at risk. I recall reading that the exhaust idle relief port needs to be 6 inches above the water line. I'm not sure how you would be able to figure out in advance whether the motor would meet that requirement on your boat.

If I were in your situation, I'd be looking for a motor that doesn't add significant weight to the transom. If at 200 HP or less, the Mercury Verado 200, the Mercury Optimax 200, the Evinrude 200 or 200 HO and the new Yamaha F200F all seem to be viable candidates. The Mercury Optimax 200 would be the easiest repower because you could reuse your controls. All the rest require a rerig of the boat.

pete r posted 02-05-2013 04:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Thanks Peter,

In addition to the 225HP I currently run a 25HP 2 stoke Merc kicker motor on the stern on a cantilevering outboard bracket, I think it weighs around 120lbs.
I am concious the combined weight of the 225 Merc and the kicker is almost 600lb however the boat seems to look OK.
When I load the boat I keep much of the dead weight forward where I can.

The only issue I have is the kicker noticeable weighs the boat down to one side when at rest.

The Honda 200 is similar in weight to what I now carry.
I guess you highlight my worry of the 250 Honda slightly exceeds the acceptable mass.

Peter, I have seen a number of 21' Conquests with 250 2 strokes (in advertisments only). Do you know how heavy they are.

martyn1075 posted 02-05-2013 05:43 PM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
I have the same problem with my kicker and it drives me nuts! On heavy trips with a few friends I load the boat heavier on one side but I dislike doing that in general. The nice thing about a Honda, Verado whatever, you can troll at low speeds without an issue therefore some will due without the kicker all together. I cant really do that with my Optimax motors at least not for hours of trolling for Springs. Too fast and noisy not geared up that sort of thing.

If I were to repower I would just run twin four strokes and be done with it Im sure so would my wallet and bank account at that point. Yikes!


martyn1075 posted 02-05-2013 06:47 PM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
The particular 21 conquest you own was very sturdy bow heavy boat in design not necessarily a bad thing either it did allow the owner to power heavy and not worry about showing it either. If you look at the weight in difference between the 200 and 250 its not much. What is it 20 lbs between the two? perhaps nothing depending on the model. You likely have about 550 in total right now you would be adding about 30ish for the base 200 about 72ish for the the 250.

200hp= L-Type 267 kg/588 lbs.
X-Type 277 kg/610 lbs.

250= L-Type 272 kg - 600 lbs.
X-Type 278 kg - 613 lbs
XX-Type 282 kg - 622 lbs.

Personally I think your boat could handle that kind of weight from whatever engine you choose. Budget, patience and availability will be what to consider. With an additional kicker thats when you might be pushing it a bit. Thats a common concern with older Whalers and the big Four Strokes available. Sometimes thats exactly why the Etec or Optimax two strokes get the nod.


Mambo Minnow posted 02-05-2013 07:20 PM ET (US)     Profile for Mambo Minnow  Send Email to Mambo Minnow     
The Conquest 21 can handle a Verado. The late model year Ventura 21s produced until just the last year were rigged at the factory with the Verado 225.
It's the same hull in dual console layout.

I speculate that the hull was designed for the Verado from the start, but it was not developed in time, so they rigged the Optimax on most Conquest models instead until the Verado became available.

L H G posted 02-05-2013 07:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for L H G    
Frank O - It's nice to hear you like the quiet running 250 Optimax on your 21 Outrage. I like your videos and photos, and the boat looks terrific with that engine. It does not look large at all. Very nice rig, and I think going with the big Optimax was a wise decision.
pete r posted 02-05-2013 08:49 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
If I went for the 250 Honda I would sell the kicker.
I trust on long trips, that size Honda would not be hardly working.
I imagine it be just ticking over and almost having the reliability of a car motor.
SJUAE posted 02-05-2013 11:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for SJUAE  Send Email to SJUAE     
Funny I consider using my 9.9 kicker on my 210 Outrage all the time just to save hours on my main ETEC 200 even though it sips fuel, although your 25hp kicker is a bit large.

I lived for a long time in the UAE and often use to consider imports from US, very few dealers will actually ship over sea's and even Ed's would not on certain outboards

Often the bundled packages you get on export models typically including prop, rigging, control and gauges soon outweigh what you may consider bargain prices at first from the US, where generally these are all extra

When I tried to buy a 9.9 Yam kicker from the states it was almost impossible to get some one export, the far east I could not trace a reliable dealer and thanks to currency fluctuations the UK actually turned out to be the best deal and was cheaper to air freight to UAE

Generally outside of the US I found Suzuki and ETEC offered the best value Honda and Yamaha being most expensive other than Verado that seem to be at premium

I suggest you also try a few dealers in Abu Dhabi and Dubai you may find a deal especially with the bundle they include


pete r posted 02-06-2013 06:52 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Hi Steve,
I guess there is better value looking at other places outside the US.
It is annoying at times and dealing with the US companies like Ed'who can be so restrictive in their attitude towards exports, however I find I have a familiar attachment and a certain amount of trust when comes to dealing with many US companies.
pete r posted 02-06-2013 08:33 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Hey Guys,
I noticed a guy selling his 2006 Evinrude Etec HO model 200 hp here in Aus. Seems like a possible option if the price is right
Jefecinco posted 02-07-2013 10:00 AM ET (US)     Profile for Jefecinco  Send Email to Jefecinco     
The E-tec should be an excellent candidate for your purposes.


pete r posted 02-07-2013 06:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
I have looked at a couple of good second hand cheap motors (1/3 the price of new) and to me there seems to be little value when you weight up the issues you encounter when handling a large outboard.

It's not so easy to lift a 225 OB off the back of your boat and lean it against the house wall like you do with a kicker motor.

Then there is the issue of transporting the second hand motor you buy. ie need to build a cradle and organise freight.

Then there is the installation of the new motor, the amalgamation of instrumentation, throtle control, steering hydraulics and electrics and tunig the prop.

All that done, whats the chance of the new motor being faulty or something stuffs up during installation process.

With large motors you have to rely on mechancs who charge a minimum of $100 per hour.

I think a new motor is looking more and more attractive.

SJUAE posted 02-08-2013 03:59 AM ET (US)     Profile for SJUAE  Send Email to SJUAE     

Once you step in to the world of grey imports you have to weigh up the pros and cons carefully re warranty etc regardless if you buy from the US or elsewhere

I bought all my electronics from the US and my kicker from UK but guarantees or support on for these is not international and return to base was not an option on the kicker

Your best bet is to find a buddy who is coming home with a container


pete r posted 02-08-2013 05:21 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Thanks SJUAE,

I think to buy low powered or cheaper motors where there is only a few grand at stake, thats OK. Grey is great in that situation.
However when you are talking of 200HP plus you need to consider backup warranties and on going service contracts.

Saying all that, I am a sucker for a good deal, infact you have just reminded me of a guy who does alot of importing.

Might give him a call!!!

Basshole posted 02-10-2013 02:07 AM ET (US)     Profile for Basshole  Send Email to Basshole     
Pete- I have the same boat as you and couldn't be happier with my 225 Etec. If you get one you will not be disappointed. And man they look purdy! 331721286934191.63624.119418714831117&type=3&theater
pete r posted 02-10-2013 03:24 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
That motor looks really neat on your 21.
From what I have been reading, all reports say they are a fantastic motor.
The only negative from one source was the motor was heavier on oil compared to other brands.
Apart from that, owners were overwhelming pleased with the motors light weight, power and reliability.

I saw a nice new 250 (last years model) on Ebay yesturday in North Carolina which did't reach it's reserve. The was one bid for 10.5k and a 17k buy now price.

I couldn't get details about the motor as to leg length, and what other stuff came with it, but it certainly got me thinking because I have a mate in Pineville who could help.

pete r posted 02-11-2013 08:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Finally managed to get my boat booked into the workshop which serviced the 225 Merc motor at the end of the last year.
I ran through the issues with the mechanic and he seemed confident all was minor and he could sort it.

Hearing the word minor was good. However, as I was leaving his workshop he confidently remarked (mate like) that my motor had a bullet proof reptutation, as though he was very familiar and an expert with same.

Well, his remark did not reassure me, it worried me !!!
I really had hold back a strong urge to comment on his competance.

It was a good thing I got out there quickly.

SJUAE posted 02-11-2013 10:15 PM ET (US)     Profile for SJUAE  Send Email to SJUAE     

I checked with the dealer that looked after my boat for years.

A full fitted ETEC 225hp all rigged plus I-command, control, cables (no battery), s/s prop etc etc is $16375 and the 250hp is $17300

I would guess at say $500 off for no fitting but $1000 to ship still makes it a good price (excluding import duty to AUS) as it is coming with $2k of accessories not typically included in the US prices.


L H G posted 02-11-2013 10:27 PM ET (US)     Profile for L H G    
It's too bad you're not in the States. If I was looking for 3-star 225, I'd have this freshwater engine shipped to my dealer for installation in a second. A 5" extension kit is about $750.

pete r posted 02-12-2013 04:16 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Gee you guys have got it good,,,,,
L H G posted 02-12-2013 06:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for L H G    
That engine is gone already - sold in two days!
pete r posted 02-14-2013 04:48 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Some good deals happening in the US but like here in Aus, they want to lock you in for an installation job too.

Dealers are now warning that their motors are now so high tech they must use computer assistance during installation to ensure their performance.

jimh posted 02-15-2013 03:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
I am curious how the description "quiet-running" became associated with the OptiMax. In every test report that I have seen, and by the witness of my own ears, they are not quiet running motors. One test report showed that the sound of one OptiMax was louder than the sound of 64 Verado engines.

I think there is plenty of tests with data that shows the Verado to be very quiet. Many other outboards now approach that same degree of silence at idle. To include the OptiMax in that group is just not possible.

I bring this up because in the very first article we have a requirement that the outboard engine to be used must be quiet. I would hate for someone to buy an engine, ship it 12,000-miles, install it on his boat, and only then find out that it is not very quiet.

L H G posted 02-15-2013 04:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for L H G    
Jim, since you asked, when Bass and Walleye Boats magazine tested the Optimax 225 ProXS and Evinrude 225 HO, they said at all planing speeds, up to WOT, the decibels of both engines were identical, same amount of engine noise.
None are as quiet as the Verados or my Mercury 200 EFI's. The Evinrude has a different, quieter idle sound because they need to compete with the 4-strokes and don't have the air injectors. But Mercury Optimax doesn't have to worry about idle sound - they have their own 4-strokes.

Now I now you and Peter don't like that magazine because of John Tiger's Shootout articles not favoring Evinrude's performances, and it's sister publication Trailer Boats, but when it was in business, it was legitimate as far as I can tell. I think one of your Evinrude contributors here would confirm that fact.

Not long ago I experienced a single 150 E-tec. It was much louder running than I expected, and noiser than both of my 200 EFI's TOGETHER. The 135 Optimax is not a quiet engine either, but the 3.0 liter ones are.

pete r posted 02-16-2013 05:05 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
For what it's worth. Today I say a rescue boat (rubber duck) with a Verado having to be towed in!!!!.

I think I may keep saving my penny's for that Honda.

pete r posted 02-16-2013 05:25 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Sorry, I ment to say I saw a duck with a Verado.
You must excuse me, I have been on the water all day in 86 degrees temp, tommorro we will be out again in temperatures of the mid 90's.
It's strange to think how ours worlds are at such contrast in climate.
pete r posted 02-21-2013 07:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
The mechanic has decided the problem is just a piston ring and gasket replacement.
He has now ordered the parts and hopefully I'ii be back in the water next weekend.
pete r posted 02-22-2013 06:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Got his message wrong. It also requires a couple of new pistons too.
boatdryver posted 02-23-2013 10:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for boatdryver  Send Email to boatdryver     

sounds like decision time for you.....


pete r posted 02-24-2013 01:02 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
I went to the repair shop and checked out the damaged pistons and it looks like we've caught it before much damage was done.

The cylinder walls looked ok and after they are given a bit of honing all should be good.

The problem was most likely caused by a blockage in the oil line which has starved the lower cylinders.

After seeing the motor stripped down I am confident that once the pistons are back in and all the supply lines are cleaned then there is no reason why the motor shouldn't go for a good number of years.

That being said, I will get a few more outings out her then get down to a Honda dealer and confirm a trade in figure for a 250 Honda later in the year.

pete r posted 03-18-2013 10:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Well I finally got the boat back home and ran the motor for sometime in a wheelie bin.
The mechanic had ensured me the motor awesome, although a bit stiff at the moment because of the new rings would run fine.
When I started her up there was alot of smoke and the motor sounded pretty good but I was still not convinced all was 100%.
Saturday, the weather had turned dirty, so I took the boat down to the nearest Honda dealer and negotiated a trade-in price while I thought the condition of my motor was in so-called excellent shape.

The dealers mechanic's found one of the cylinders which was new (No. 5) to be down on pressure and also found some other minor issues which only led him to believe the repair work I had done was not up to standard and it was not worth his while to accept my trade-in.

I guess I too was finally convinced I was dealing with a lemon, I have now bitten the bullet and gone ahead with the new motor (250 Honda Silver bullet) and will attempt to sell the old motor privately.

martyn1075 posted 03-23-2013 01:05 AM ET (US)     Profile for martyn1075  Send Email to martyn1075     
Wow! smart decision I'm happy for you . I'm sure you will never look back again. Welcolm to years of reliability phenomenal fuel savings and no smoke ever again. Very jealous but maybe someday I may have a silver Alien.


pete r posted 03-23-2013 04:57 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Thanks Martyn,

I have looked at and exhausted all the information I could discover about 200 to 250 Honda and Merc Outboards.
I also kept your advise in mind about the reliability of the Honda brand.
At the same time I also tried to reason why I should not go with the Merc Verado or the brillant new light weight 2 stokes which are producing amazing power and are much quieter than before, so my decision was not easy.

Next Thursday (Easter Holiday weekend)I shall pick up the boat and take it down to a place called Rhyll on Phillip Island. The bottom of mainland Australia.

The Island is very exposed on one side to the Southern ocean/Bass straight (scarey)and Western Port to the north which is protected from the open ocean can still blow up and be dangerous.
The waterway is very tidel and has a muddy bottom which can be a problem at low tide if you don't have local knowledge.
The fishing is great, you can expect to catch fish like Snapper, whiting, Gummy sharks, elephant fish, and bream to name a few.

Anyway at present I am not thinking of fishing. I just want to get the Whaler back in the water and feel the sensation of that 250 Silver bullet I have read so much about in the past weeks.

Mambo Minnow posted 03-23-2013 08:41 AM ET (US)     Profile for Mambo Minnow  Send Email to Mambo Minnow     
Pete. I have the same boat so I will be most interested in your choice. Please share installation experience and performance.

Keep in mind that Whaler factory installed the Verado L6 225HP on the Ventura 21 in it's last model years. This is the same hull as your Conquest, so the transom can take the weight. It would be a very expensive repower, but it is possible.

I was leaning towards the Honda 250HP, but the new Yamaha 200F currently has me intrigued. The digital control 200G will not be available here until late summer.

I do need some assurance that Yamaha has addressed their exhaust internal corrosion issues that have plagued their 3.3L 225/250 HP engines before laying down over $20K. It's too soon to tell if the 4.2L engines have improved corrosion protection.

On another note, the roughest water I have ever sailed was in the Australian Bight, south of the mainland. It was a Navy destroyer, not a Boston Whaler. We transited from Fremantle to Sydney. A week in Sydney was the best liberty in my 25 year career. Cheers mate!

pete r posted 03-24-2013 03:40 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Hi Mambo,
Yes I am aware you have a similar boat. I have taken a keen interest in many of your past video's and comments you have contributed to the forum in the past few years.

I am only too pleased to update you on my experiences with the new motor.
It's only the last week or two I noticed the new Yamaha 200F getting some good reports and I also are of the belief Yamaha have still alot of work (spin) to get people to forget about the corrosion issues which plague them in the mid 2000's.

I am always interested to hear from people who have eperienced Bass Straight when she's rough.
It's our local ocean and it is so tempting to cross when the weather is good, but most of us know to be aware,,,,,

One of my challengers will be to some how cross Bass Straight to Tasmania in the Boston Whaler to again experience some of the best cruising and fishing grounds you could ever imagine.

pete r posted 03-25-2013 08:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
I have just been informed the motors on the boat and the first sea tial went very well.
The boat apparently easily and comfortably cruised at speeds around fourty mph with my existing Mirage plus 17" prop.
I was told my prop would get me by but it's missing top end power.
I was advised to go to try the larger 19" to achieve this, so I've now ordered a 19" Mirage plus.

The installer estimates the boat to then reach speeds of around 55mph.

pete r posted 04-19-2013 06:50 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Having alot of fun running in the Silver bullet and managed to do a bit of successful fishing in the mean time.

All has gone well so far, but I can't really say the motor is all that quite once you build the revs over 2k.

Coming recently from a yachting background, I hoped the new motor might provide us with a certain amount of peace at cruisng speed.
Well this was the case when motoring at trolling speeds, however once we reached planing speed the motor produces a sort of whining noise.
Fortunately when I pushed her quicker (4000 revs)I found the noise didn't get much louder.

Mambo Minnow posted 04-20-2013 07:30 AM ET (US)     Profile for Mambo Minnow  Send Email to Mambo Minnow     
How about posting some pictures please? Does the extra 100 lbs of engine weight noticeably lower the waterline on the transom? There are 4 scuppers on the stern.
boatdryver posted 04-20-2013 12:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for boatdryver  Send Email to boatdryver     
So, how does the noise of the new Honda compare to the old Mercury 225 HP 2 stroke?


pete r posted 04-21-2013 04:45 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
I will get some more pictures next weekend but I'am not sure how to get my photos to you guys.
I notice most members on CW use Photo Bucket. Is there another way I can send thes without jambing up the system.

Buying the new motor, I was very aware of the extra weight on the transom issue after hearing the many comments which have transpired over the last year or so when ever repowering discussion arised.
Guys, The motor sits fine on the boat. When I last went out fishing last there where 3 blokes and my wife on board.
The sea was a little choppy, so the boat was a rocking horse at anchor and still no water splashed into the well which was really pleasing.

Noise comparison.... The old Merc to me sounded like a Harley with straight though pipes. The Honda sounds more like quiet turbo Porche in comparison.
Once I run the motor in, I will be able to give you a better Idea.
Oh yes, when we got back from fishing it was dark and there was no problem running the motor to flush it when back home.
No way could I have done that with the old Merc.

Mambo Minnow posted 04-21-2013 07:56 AM ET (US)     Profile for Mambo Minnow  Send Email to Mambo Minnow     
Pete, the moderator does not allow members to post pictures directly. Photobucket, Flickr or equivalent with the link cited is the only method.
pete r posted 04-22-2013 08:37 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Ok Mambo,

Your my test bunny.... to try-out my first attempt at Flickr.
I've frustratingly downloaded some earlier photos of my boat and some scenery shots. Hopefully I have managed to put them on the system.
From what I can gather is that you go to

I guess you guys can now put in the underlining and inverted commas to make it happen.

conch posted 04-22-2013 09:29 AM ET (US)     Profile for conch  Send Email to conch     
conch posted 04-22-2013 09:34 AM ET (US)     Profile for conch  Send Email to conch

one more time

Mambo Minnow posted 04-22-2013 11:13 AM ET (US)     Profile for Mambo Minnow  Send Email to Mambo Minnow     
Test complete, it worked. Very nice marina you have there.
Look forward to seeing more photos with your new Honda.

pete r posted 04-22-2013 06:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Wow, what a relief.
Well done, I was confident you guys could sort it.

The shots at the Marina are at the Dockland part of Melbourne's city. The whole area is being developed as fast as you would not believe. That was our second outing in the boat.

The next group of photos with the Pelicans is when we camped at a rural looking place called Leopold near Geelong. Geelong is a city on the southern side of our large bay and was established on the strengh of the wool industry.
These days it survives on government handouts which prop up the once profitable Ford motor car manufacturing plant.

The last photos are of our boat at our place down at Phillip Island. You will notice the boat is now supporting the new Honda.
At High tide I can bring the boat to the front of the property. Unfortunately low have to contend with some muddy ground.

pete r posted 04-29-2013 07:16 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Hey Guys,
I have just down loaded some photos of the boat with new Honda motor. Unfortunately I forgot to take my DSLR with me and had to rely on my Iphone.
They came out a little dark but still surprisingly good for a phone.
pete r posted 04-29-2013 08:43 AM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
Another weekend passes by and I only managed to put an extra hour on the motor owing to very strong winds which forced me to hug the coast line as I continue to test and run in the new beast.

I try to drive or lets say power the boat to plane with much the same technique and effort I used with the old 225 Merc in attempt to compare acceleration if thats makes any sense.

The new motor seems to not acellerate or get out of the blocks as quick as the old motor. I guess it's because it's being powered by a larger 19" prop (the previous was 17").

Although we headed into a sea with a fair amount of wind chop we still managed to sit on a comfortably 30mph at around 4000 rpm, any faster than that the wife would start to grizzle.
I tried to test drive at a slower speed, say 20mph, around 3000rpm, the speed I would contemplate doing if I where to beat into a larger sea.
To my supprise I found the motor sort of laboured to power us through the chop and the boat noticably lost revs and struggled to stay on a plane. At that lower rev range it was a bit of a juggle with the throttle to keep her right.

I still found the winding sound from the motor at 4000rpm loud enough to make it awkward to carry on a conversation with my wife sitting beside me which meant I needed to back off and juggle the throttle to be heard.

We return to our little sheltered bay and where I couldn't help giving her a sqirt until the wife bare nuckled from hanging on told me to slow down. Well at 5000rpm. Wow....The 21 footer was a missle.

Once back from

Mambo Minnow posted 05-01-2013 07:57 AM ET (US)     Profile for Mambo Minnow  Send Email to Mambo Minnow     
Thanks for posting the additional pictures. I did not realize you let the boat sit on the mud flats at mean low tide. You get quite a bit of tidal range down there. Fairly comparable lattitudes to what we experience in the Bay of Fundy in Downeast Maine/Nova Scotia I reckon.
pete r posted 05-01-2013 06:59 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     

Normally I moor the boat in a shallow channel about 200 feet off shore where it unfortunately gets a bit of bird crap and I have to use a canoe or dinghy for access.

This was the first time I have let the boat sit on the mud flat and it's because I got caught up doing another job. I forgot King tides move out quicker than the norm.

When I first realised my error I just packed a fender under the boat and left it as is, partly beached on the sand. The wind was going to remain heading offshore so there was no threat of wave action.

Later that afternoon I set the alarm for 2am in the morning (next high tide) and got up and moved the boat to deeper water.
This time however I planed to moor closer in. This time I put on my waders and walked it out to where I thought the ground was safe to dry out on.

Towards the end of April time of year we see King tides and full moons.
Well I had alot of fun moving the boat. The moon was so bright, the air was still and you could hear sounds and see the swans and other water birds inquisitively, and slowly moving towards you and watching as I secured the boat in it's new position.

Commander Coo1 posted 05-01-2013 09:39 PM ET (US)     Profile for Commander Coo1  Send Email to Commander Coo1     
It looks like your transducer is mounted right in front of your propeller. It seems like this could cause a lot of performance issues, have you noticed anything like that?
pete r posted 05-01-2013 11:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
The transducer is in the original spot and from what I have seen from photos of other Conquest's I believe my boat to be very original.

Most of the water I travel in would be described as shallow so I often check the fish finder (apelco 360) and it seems to be OK.

Commander, you have prompted me to look up the manual and I have noticed it adivises a 2" clearance from the circumferance of the prop.....
Oh! I now have a 19" prop.

Thanks for noticing that. I better double check my readings next time I take the boat out.

Commander Coo1 posted 05-02-2013 12:15 PM ET (US)     Profile for Commander Coo1  Send Email to Commander Coo1     
no problem! You may want to look at it while on plane to make sure it isnt sending areated/distrubed water over your prop too, that could cause some performance and traction issues!

pete r posted 05-02-2013 07:26 PM ET (US)     Profile for pete r  Send Email to pete r     
So far you wouldn't believe it.
Every time I have had a chance to put the boat in the water this year the weather conditions have been pretty average.

I can't wait to get out there on of those calm glassy days so I can properly test the boat and instruments.

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