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Author Topic:   50HP Johnson on 13', anyone done this?
maverick posted 02-28-2002 05:22 AM ET (US)   Profile for maverick   Send Email to maverick  
Hi, everyone - I'm considering a 50 on my little 13. Yep, I've talked with my insurance guy. Yep, I know it's rated for a 40 max. What I'm seeking is info on folks who have run one powered like this. How fast will it run? Engine weight doesn't appear to be an issue - difference between 40 and 50 is minimal. Will be driven with some sense. Reason for 50 is that it is a GREAT deal dollar-wise, maybe too good to pass up. Pennywise and pound foolish? Your thoughts on performance and related experience. Thanx, Mav
JBCornwell posted 02-28-2002 09:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for JBCornwell  Send Email to JBCornwell     
Howdy, Mav.

It's been done. Performance is a little stronger than the 40. Weight is not a problem.

Liability in the event of an accident (willful negligence) and local laws related to powering represent some risk.

I operated one once (70s 13' "Bass Boat"). Commented that it was strong for a 40 and was told that it was a 50 with a 40 bonnet. If you do it, put the 40 bonnet or decals on it. Wouldn't want Whaler drivers rep to get any worse.

Red sky at night. . .
JB :)

Tom W Clark posted 02-28-2002 11:17 AM ET (US)     Profile for Tom W Clark  Send Email to Tom W Clark     

I grew up around two 13' Whalers that had 50 hp motors on them. One was a neighbor’s with a Merc 50, the other a friend's with a Johnson 50. Both boats were blue hulled 15" transoms.

Both boats ran safely for years (though the Merc sometimes didn't run). You will not have a problem. Remember, you don't HAVE to open the throttle all the way.

I had a 13' with a Johnson 35. The boat with the Merc was a little faster but not as much as you would think. None of these boats had power trim though and all were powerhead rated.

Bigshot posted 02-28-2002 11:48 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
No biggie Maverick. I see oone around here with a 3cyl 60hp on it. I doubt you will get much more top end due to hull design, etc but holeshot will be substantial and you can cruise nicely at 3k probably.

I just passed on a 1997 50 Johnson with SS prop, TNT, controls and guages for $1600 from a friend, just because it is about $1k out of my budget....would have been sweet!

Flipper posted 03-01-2002 12:13 AM ET (US)     Profile for Flipper  Send Email to Flipper     
You'll like it. Just watch for headwinds and large waves - not good together with this rig. A friend flipped his 13' (with a 40 Johnson) in the St. Lawrence main channel on a windy day. He had just bought the motor and was probably 'testing' it.
FISHNFF posted 03-01-2002 01:05 AM ET (US)     Profile for FISHNFF  Send Email to FISHNFF     
I had a 1981 13 Sport with a 35 Evinrude. Didn't have speedo, LORAN, or GPS but turned a 13" aluminum at I think 5400RPM for about 30. A buddy with a 15 Striper and Evinrude 70 would absolutely run circles around me and burn less fuel. I upgraded to a Yamaha 40 (2 holes up)and ran a 15"SS prop and got 5300RPM and 38MPH. A defective oil seal caused severe scuffing. Yamaha footed the bill for a rebuild, so I paid for parts for a 50 and Bam! A sleeper 50 in 40 case (changed carb jets, reed valves, and exhaust manifold). I thought I would set the water on fire, but with same prop hit 5500RPM and just broke 40. Still a fast ride. The GPS was set for MPH I'm sure, but I remember I would be dead even with another buddy with a 1987 Striper 15, 60 Johnson, and wooden custom decks and storage boxes.
KeysNole posted 03-01-2002 01:23 AM ET (US)     Profile for KeysNole  Send Email to KeysNole     
I have a 50 Yamaha on my 13'. The performance is great, and I rarely have to run it hard to achieve desirable speeds. I can pull a skier, outrun a storm, and it takes me to the outer islands and back quickly. After having my 50, there are two things I've noticed:

1. I would NEVER get a 13' with less than a 40.

2. I would NEVER get a 13' without trim/tilt.

Although my needs are most likely a bit different from many on this board, those are two conclusions I have come to.

maverick posted 03-01-2002 06:08 AM ET (US)     Profile for maverick  Send Email to maverick     
Thanks for the info. I'm shopping hard and doing some comparisons on the dollars. Will be for inland use; perhaps a rare run a couple miles offshore to Alligator Reef (Keys). Mav
Flipper posted 03-02-2002 07:08 AM ET (US)     Profile for Flipper  Send Email to Flipper     
Oh yeah, I also have seen a 13 with one of those older 3-cyl. Merc 70's on it and, while the boat was a snail (I think the owner mounted the throttle closer to the console so his kids couldn't get it to W.O.T.), it seemed to ride fine.
Bigshot posted 03-04-2002 10:15 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
those old 70's were under 200lbs. I had one on my 15'(1983) thing was a dog and 35 was it. Threw on a 70 JOhnson and 48.6. The merc is a 70 but more like a 50, small foot, etc. The next generation 70 is the real deal.
gilligan posted 04-14-2002 02:33 PM ET (US)     Profile for gilligan  Send Email to gilligan     
I had an old 13' with a leaned 55 mariner (more a Yammi than a Merc). With the old 3cly (kinda dead) yammi 40, the boat handled well. With the lean 55, frankly, the boat was sqarrley. When the bottom got dirty, it worked fine. I never really thought about it until now, as I has the 55 laying around at the time.From what I recall, I had it trimmed just right(bolt-through, a little high)I really can`t understand why why this planing cathedral hull was sqarrley.(may of had some mods to the hull as it was a island whaler).
The 55 was quite light as it was a 2 cylinder, manual start, & the hull was "dug-out". Since the engine was jetted lean, one day, just before the powerhead blew, this thing really scared the $#i+ out of me.
whalernut posted 04-15-2002 08:40 PM ET (US)     Profile for whalernut  Send Email to whalernut     
I believe the older 35 H.P. OMC`s 2-cylinder without Power T/T was the ultimate engine for the `13 Hull. I had one on a 71` hull and another guy had the 40h.p. Newer OMC Power T/T on his hull, and his layed lower on the transon in the water. I am guising 20-30 lbs. heavier on his. Jack.
boxers posted 04-22-2002 10:00 PM ET (US)     Profile for boxers  Send Email to boxers     
I have a 40 honda on my AE-13 (with a SS wood package) and wish I would have put the 50 on it. They weigh the same so you decide how much throttle is necessary. The 50 is the ticket unfortunatly our litigious society must be taken into consideration. A 40 engine cover would be advisable. One other point to mention is the use of a plastic fin on the cavation plate GREATLY improved the control of the boat. When pushing the performance envelope control is likewise prudent.
lhg posted 04-22-2002 10:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for lhg    
Chuck - There is a photo in the 13 Reference section, Testimonials, of the 11th Boston Whaler ever made, mine, with a 15" shaft 1970 Merc 50 on it. This 1958 year boat would run around 45mph, but would handle the engine. Not for kids, though. There is also a picture of a 13 Sport with a Johnson 50 on it somewhere else on this site. The old 50's were powerhead rated, and the new ones are prop, so this increases the usable HP somewhat. Liability wise, as long as your insurance company will issue you a policy showing the 50 HP engine, you are protected up to policy limit.
maverick posted 04-23-2002 05:37 PM ET (US)     Profile for maverick  Send Email to maverick     
Thanks for the input guys -

I bought a new 25 Johnson 15" remote electric start year 2000 - got a GREAT deal ($1875), so price and kids using made the decision. Runs very good, well pleased with performance, probably 25-30mph. No complaints whatsoever. Controls and teleflex NFB steering hit me up for an extra $300 and $200, but still a decent deal. Mav

daverdla posted 04-23-2002 08:33 PM ET (US)     Profile for daverdla  Send Email to daverdla     
You have raised an interesting point. Are you sure about your statement regarding listing the HP on the policy giving full coverage even if its over the manufacturer's stated maximum? I know that I had to list the engine HP but I don't believe that I had to confirm that it was within the manufacturer's limits. In my case its at the limit. I've read about insurance companies finding very creative ways to avoid paying a claim. It seems that knowingly operating a boat beyond its legal limitations would give them plenty of wiggle room even if it was on the policy.


zpeed7 posted 04-24-2002 12:40 AM ET (US)     Profile for zpeed7  Send Email to zpeed7     
When I was about 13 a friend of my dad had on of the early 13's fitted with a 60HP Johnson, I think it was a two cilinder model because it was the same size as a 50. Me and my dad's friend took it out quite a few times and that thing was FAST. And it ran perfect. It could pull two skiers pretty easily. I remeber he sold it two years later for about $3000, fully restored. 14 years later and I'm still at my dad for not buying it... ;)

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