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H26 Outboard Motor Shaft, Long or Extra Long

Doug J

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May 2, 2005
1,192
Hunter 26 Oceanside, CA
Can someone tell me what the recommended shaft length of the motor for a H26 should be? Is it 20 inch or 25 inch? I currently have a 20 inch, but some say go with the 25 inch. My concern is that the longer length may cause too much stress on the mount, with the prop 5 inches lower in the water. But I can also see the advantage while motor-sailing on a starboard tac and the boat healing, the prop will stay in the water better.
 
Jan 19, 2010
9,899
Hunter 26 Charleston
Something else to consider .... on my H26, even with the O.B. in the up and locked position, the tip of the lower unit will drop and the prop drags a little on a port tack. I think the longer the shaft, the more likely you are to drag the prop even when the O.B. is up and locked.
 
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Fred

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Sep 27, 2008
470
Hunter 33.5 Little Current, Ontario, CA
I have a 25 inch motor. In really heavy seas it still cavitates from time to time. The stern on the H26 is plenty strong, I haven't noticed any issues. I agree with Ranger about dragging on port tack. Two mitigations are possible 1) eliminate any "pre-tilt" on the mounting board (mine has too much, I need to change the brackets). I had to pre-tilt the motor to the second or third hole to negate the pre-tilt of the mountingboard. This means that I am effectively losing some of the motor tilt (i.e. 70 deg max) and 2) ensure that the mounting board is perpendicular to the boat (I had to install spacers to make this happen).
 

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Jan 19, 2010
9,899
Hunter 26 Charleston
Fred! You have really done a lot of subtle mods on your boat. Thanks for the spacer idea. I think I'll do something similar with mine. The dragging of the prop drives me crazy... after all it is the silence of sailing that is a big part of why we do it.
 

Doug J

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May 2, 2005
1,192
Hunter 26 Oceanside, CA
Big question. Lake or ocean sailing as following seas make a difference
All of the above. Ocean, lakes. Someone told me the H26/260 owners manual calls for a 20 inch motor. The motor I'm replacing is a 20 inch, and considering the feedback from Rgranger and Fred, I just ordered a 20 inch.
 
Jun 8, 2004
8,844
-na -NA Anywhere USA
Doug
Many years ago I was involved writing the owners manuals FYI. If in a lot of filling waves many would suggest the 26 inch shaftbut the decision rests with the owner.
Any time we all are here to help
 
Mar 28, 2005
12
Hunter 260 AB
I have the long shaft 20". I was in high winds and tall wave on the nose trying to out run from a storm to get to a dock it was only a few mile but that sidecar Hunter 26 dam near stoped with each wave. The longer shaft would have helped
 

Doug J

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May 2, 2005
1,192
Hunter 26 Oceanside, CA
Interesting discussion. In addition to the responses I'm getting here, I have spoken with 2 friends. One has owned 2 H26's and now owns a 260. In general he is very knowledgeable on a lot of things. He has a 20 inch on his current 260. He had both a 20 and 25 inch on the 2 H26's he owned, and recommends the 20 inch. The other friend has a H26 and has a 25 inch, and recommends that. In discussion with them and all of you, seems there is pros and cons to both 20 and 25 inch.
Tough decision. o_O I don't think I would like it much if the lower unit drags in the water when I have it raised for sailing. Also, not sure I'd like to have to make modifications to the mount to keep it out of the water. My friend that's had 3 of these boats told me he had to raise the motor mount some to get it where he liked it. Now he's got the 20 inch.
 

ronkS2

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Aug 22, 2017
27
Hunter 240 South Florida
I took some measurements on my 1998 240 boat. Usually on a power boat you measure transom from the top of where the motor mounts to the bottom of the V- hull to get to unobstructed water. On the trailer I took a string from the middle of the hull by the keel (part of boat that sits lowest in water) and keeping it level ran it back to the motor mount. The string fell 20 inches from the top of the motor bracket. So the undisturbed water sits at 20 inches below the mount and with a 20 inch shaft you have only 2 or 3 inches of clean water at most. That being said, as Dave mentioned there are a hundred different reasons to go with a 20 or 25 and at the end of the day probably no wrong choice. Below is the what and why of my decision.

Just went thru all this as well with a new motor. I chose the 25 inch again, as it worked well in the past for me. I am in Florida so ocean and waves were a concern and with the previous 25 it never came out of the water. I also beach my boat regularly on Peanut Island and when you get 24 feet away from sure there is normally deep enough water for either motor. I have a factory trailer and I launch on a shallow sand beach with the motor down and have not had a problem yet.

Good luck to all
 

Doug J

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May 2, 2005
1,192
Hunter 26 Oceanside, CA
The motor I ordered had to be back ordered, due to out of stock. Good thing, I was able to change my order again. Back to the 25 inch - Lol! That's it, I'm sticking with the 25 inch. :)
 
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Doug J

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May 2, 2005
1,192
Hunter 26 Oceanside, CA
Well, I took delivery of my new 25" Tohatsu, EFI, 9.9hp, electric start, power tilt. Pretty exciting! My concern now is ground clearance while trailering. I have the OEM Hunter 26 trailer. The motor owners manual says not to trailer it while tilted up.

Those of you who have the same rig as mine and a 25 inch motor, have you experienced any problems trailering?
 

Fred

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Sep 27, 2008
470
Hunter 33.5 Little Current, Ontario, CA
I have a 25 inch motor. See my trailering configuration attached. It is important to use the correct drop down hitch platform to ensure that the trailer is level. I use a strap on the motor to (partially) offload the power tilt mechanism.
 

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Jun 8, 2004
8,844
-na -NA Anywhere USA
As a dealer particularly the 25 inch shaft I suggested to tilt the engine before pulling trailer out as a precaution. When on flat and level ground, let the motor hang level with a line attached to the handle to prevent motor bounce during travel. However if going over for example railroad crossings that are elevated with a jump psticularly with a warning sign, be cautious. But if tilting the motor during travel, secure it to prevent it from accidental drop down. If new with a 25 inch shaft to each owner, float the boat to the trailer while at ramp with it down and possible pull out very slowly to see what happens to determine what you will do as the responsibility will rest with you. Also with floating docks and yes I have run into this, shallow cross ties or wires holding docks together which I encourage always checking with new marinas to see how they are built to include if anything under water construction
 

Doug J

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May 2, 2005
1,192
Hunter 26 Oceanside, CA
My new 9.9 hp, fuel injected, power tilt, 25 inch Tohatsu is now installed. I replaced the original motor mount with a new stronger one, and made the mount squared off with the transom. The starboard side of the mount is extended out 4 inches. The aluminum tube is 2"x 3"x 8", 1/4" thick. An aluminum wedge 8" long adds another inch, for a total of 4 inches. The port side of the wood mount is beveled and shaped to fit the contours of the transom. The wood is walnut measuring 19" x 13" x 1.75". I used Watco Danish Oil to seal it. I didn't want to use something that would peel off and need to be re-done. I figure I can re-apply the oil as needed. After receiving the new motor I was a little concerned about ground clearance while trailering. The owners manual says not to trailer with the motor tilted up. So I compromised and lifted the motor 2 inches. I'm comfortable now with the ground clearance. The motor being 2 inches higher I think will also make access to the controls easier too. The tilted up motor fits nicely in the motor well. The whole assembly is thru-bolted. I drilled out the holes thru the laminated in aluminum plates that are embedded in the transom. Inside I used large SS fender washers, making it very strong and secure.

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Jimmy

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Jan 28, 2018
176
Hunter 26 lake Powell lake mead
Wow that looks great have you had it out yet? What speed are you getting keep us informed I didn’t know they made fuel injection 9.9.
 

Doug J

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May 2, 2005
1,192
Hunter 26 Oceanside, CA
Wow that looks great have you had it out yet? What speed are you getting keep us informed I didn’t know they made fuel injection 9.9.
Thanks Jimmy! I plan to put it in the water next weekend. So far I have only 5 hours break in time in a barrel of water. I'll follow the break in procedure for 5 more hours. Then the following weekend heading to Catalina. The motor won't make the boat any faster, limited to the hull speed around 6.5 knots, but it should be reliable and easy to start.

Oh, Suzuki makes small motors with fuel injection too. I think maybe they were the first to do it on these small motors, with no battery required. Pretty cool, won't have to worry about a gummed up carburetor. Now need to worry about fuel injectors.:biggrin:
 
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Fred

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Sep 27, 2008
470
Hunter 33.5 Little Current, Ontario, CA
Very nicely done Doug! My motor has the remote control cables so I required more offset than 4 inches (need more clearance when tilting up). I will be interested in hearing your experience, particularly to what extent the motor will drag on a port tack. I think it should be fine.
 

Doug J

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May 2, 2005
1,192
Hunter 26 Oceanside, CA
Very nicely done Doug! My motor has the remote control cables so I required more offset than 4 inches (need more clearance when tilting up). I will be interested in hearing your experience, particularly to what extent the motor will drag on a port tack. I think it should be fine.
Fred, I'll let you know if it drags. I don't think it will though. A friend has a 2015 Tohatsu 9.8, 25 inch shaft on his H26, he said his doesn't drag on a port tack. Maybe the Tohatsu's tilt higher.
 

Fred

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Sep 27, 2008
470
Hunter 33.5 Little Current, Ontario, CA
Yamaha tilts 70 degrees but I’m probably losing 10 degrees because of the pre-tilt on my bracket which I need to fix.