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Author Topic:   Johnson Oceanrunners
witness posted 04-20-2001 10:23 PM ET (US)   Profile for witness   Send Email to witness  
Well, I was so glad to have all the help with the Johnson Ficht's (BTW I passed on them) that now I am looking for input on the Johnson Oceanrunners (specifically a pair of 150s, 1994, with less than 170 hrs)? So, any input, good, bad, efficient or hogs??? (I am often not sure where to post these kind of questions, here vs the general forum, but hopefully it will work here). And as always, thank you in advance!
lhg posted 04-22-2001 09:12 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
I hear they're great, fast engines. People that have them seem to like them very much. This could be one of their best engines. Should be, the 60 degree "v" design was copied from Mercury when their patent expired!

The only downside I have heard is that one does need to keep on eye on the "never fully perfected" OMC VRO oil injection system.

Is Bombardier getting the parts availability
problems on older OMC 2 strokes taken care of, so that a used OMC 2 stroke is a safe purchase? I would check on that with your local Johnson dealer.

Zack posted 04-23-2001 11:35 AM ET (US)     Profile for Zack  Send Email to Zack     
I have heard that the 94-95 Evinrude 150-175 had a powerhead problem. My father in law has a 1995 150 and Evinrude had to replace the powerhead under warranty after 2 or so years use. I was also looking at an outrage with 1995 175 that had also had the powerhead replaced. Not sure what any of this means except something to check out.


hauptjm posted 04-23-2001 12:20 PM ET (US)     Profile for hauptjm    
Witness, I can only comment on mine. I have the same engine ('95 150 Oceanrunner), and have had nothing but perfect performance. It starts on the first crank EVERY time, runs like a bat-out-of-hell and actually fairs pretty well on the fuel efficiency side. As Larry states, its design is pretty well tested, and simple. What amazes me is how well it runs all across the power band. I can troll at 5 knots for two hours, pull in the lines, batten down the hatches and turn it up to 5300rpm and cool on in without missing a beat. As far as powerheads, I have not had a problem or heard that this model was particularly susceptible to one. I wish I had another one stored in a box somewhere waiting to be mounted when the day comes to repower.
SWarren posted 04-23-2001 03:52 PM ET (US)     Profile for SWarren  Send Email to SWarren     
Just curious Hauptjm did you bypass the vro? Or do you still use it? I use mine on my 115's and they seem to work fine. I have heard many different opinions on the tanks.
where2 posted 04-23-2001 07:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for where2  Send Email to where2     
Sometime last year (or 18 months), Trailer Boats magazine ran an article on the OMC VRO systems, their workings and their pitfalls. The largest single cause they found for blown powerheads on the VRO equipped engines was air leaking into the oil or fuel lines. Air in either line causes foaming when the two come together in the VRO pump. Additionally, the early VRO pumps had a bladder that was broken down by the use of alcohols in some fuels, and that was the cause of the original bad press on the VRO system. (I always wondered why everyone said VRO systems will blow the engine up, and yet OMC kept using them for a decade...)
Anyway, the article was incredibly detailed, and described how to identify which pump you had, and how to upgrade to the latest style. If it weren't for my space limitations in my 15' Sport, I'd actually have hooked it up by now. (If only there was a way to retro-fit a yamaha under cowl oil tank to my 70hp Johnson...)
If you want me to look up which issue that was in, E-mail me. I'm sure back issues are probably available from the publisher.
lhg posted 04-23-2001 07:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
I recently saw a website post by an Ex-OMC engineer who stated that the VRO oil injection system was never correctly engineered for the last 26 years, and they never really bothered to get it perfected, right up to "folding" time. Evidently the idea was based on faulty engineering design and needed to be re-done from the ground-up.
They finally got it to be "pretty good", but not totally reliable long term.

Thousands of OMC engines were destroyed by failure of this system, and it can evidently still happen to anyone, at any time. They never even bothered to re-engineer the mid-range engine systems to put the tank under the engine hood. I think if I had an OMC mid-range in a smaller Whaler with no real space for the external oil tank, I'd get rid of it and pre-mix 50 to 1, like many are doing. With a Tempo/Pate tank under the seats, this is no big deal.

hauptjm posted 04-24-2001 11:24 AM ET (US)     Profile for hauptjm    
SWarren, to date (knock on wood), I have never had a problem. My VRO is still operative, and continuosly monitored. Oil level, lines and pump get inspected by me every time I use the boat. I did not buy the engine new. It was purchased by the previous owner of the boat new in '95. I do have the service records from the dealer. When I bought the boat, it (engine) was still under warranty. To date, it has seen the dealer twice: once for a faulty ignition problem (before me) and once for a leaking bleeder valve on the tilt system (as my engine). Oddly enough, the tilt repair cost the factory $475 and the ignition problem was less than a $100.00 claim. All-in-all I have been more than satisfied with my engine. However, I am aware that the OMC VRO system has had it's problems. I also have had buddies with injection problems with their Yammies. In general, I think most (not all) problems could be curtailed if we spent the time and effort to monitor our mechanical systems. Nothing is fool proof.
hooter posted 08-16-2004 03:22 PM ET (US)     Profile for hooter    
A bud o' mahn bought a 2000 model pre-Bombardier Evinrude 130 new in the crate about 18 months ago. He got a hell of a deal. Bein' as that was timed in the middle of the switch to Bomabardier ownership, all he got with the purchase was a one-year warranty. We fish together pretty regular, and he's gotten good service out o' this engine, put mebbe 200 hours on it. He's nit-picky about his equipment and keeps up with this motor well, as he does ever'thin' he owns. In the middle of a 35-mile run out to the mouth of the Atchafalaya River Saturday, he's now learned that his VRO pump failed, blowing this engine.

Ah dredged up this old string to remind folks that in spite of mah roughly 40 years of happily runnin' mostly OMC outboards, the VRO erl delivery system has a spotty reputation. Mah friend has proven sort o' close to home that one runs an OMC VRO system at one's own risk after the warranty's up. AH'm lookin' to buy an extended warranty for the 2000 model OceanPro 150 on the back o' mah 18' this week.

holiberry posted 08-19-2004 11:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for holiberry  Send Email to holiberry     
hey hey! i have owned a pair of 1993 oceanrunners (150's) on my 24 ft stratos walkaround cuddy for 8 years and when i first got them i paid until i learned the engines. powerpacks, rectifiers have been the only occasional problem i used to have. marine mechanics dream until you buy a MANUAL! after 2 years , i removed the flat plugs, which are ok if you like running wide open all the time , with the gap plugs. used prem gas or reg with a litle octane boost,(be careful not to much). these motors run very warm, very close to overheating, which is why the powerpacks, rectifiers go out, the wires get so hot they short. so remove the thermostats, use gap plugs if you idle fish(cobia, trolling), or just slow cruise. when you run it burns off the crud on your plugs that you cant on the flat plugs.i love them, going to upgrade to twin 200s soon . have a pair of 1993 150 s for sale. gulf breeze fla come take a test drive $3995 for both! have been babied, you will love yours, just learn them, maintainance is minimal, and you can work on them yourself, buy a manual....dave(holiberry)850-934-0119,800-477-2438
Bigshot posted 08-20-2004 10:37 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
I have about a 4 page paper on the OMC VRO system and in a nutshell here is the "moral" of the story:

So, contrary to boat ramp banter, VRO is a simple and reliable oiling system
that has been standard equipment on most OMC outboards from 40 to 300
horsepower for the past 16 years. Most of the misinformation and "scare
tactics" about its reliability originate from those who do not understand
how the system works-or fail to keep it maintained.

If you want the whole article please e-mail me.

seahorse posted 08-21-2004 10:33 AM ET (US)     Profile for seahorse  Send Email to seahorse     
That must have been written a while back.

The VRO (OMS pump) is now in its 20th year of production!!!

jimh posted 01-17-2005 07:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     

for some good information about OMC VRO systems.

fourdfish posted 01-17-2005 08:40 PM ET (US)     Profile for fourdfish  Send Email to fourdfish     
I have a 175hp I bought new in 1992. Still runs great! My son is taking mine as he knows how reliable it has been. I am aware of the past problems with the oil pump but I never experienced it. I keep a good watch on the oil all the time. These have been good performing engines for a long time.
offshore27 posted 01-17-2005 09:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for offshore27  Send Email to offshore27     

I have a pair of 150 ocean runners. Absolutley bullet proof!!!! Maintain them and they will never let you down.

I have a friend that has a pair with over 1000 hrs. on them and the heads have never been off. How many manufacturers can lay claim to that.

If compression is good buy them

happypappy posted 01-18-2005 12:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for happypappy  Send Email to happypappy     
I am continually amazed at how many engine failures are blamed on the VRO system by people who do not understand the system and how ruggedly simple it is!
"Musta' been the VRO" has been the standard excuse for those with poor troubleshooting technique for quite a while!

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