Tohatsu 5hp propane outboard?

greg_m

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May 23, 2017
692
Catalina Jaguar 22 Simons Town
Very unfair and skewed way to look at it... A single article from years ago! It's not like you hear about boats blowing up every week due to gas explosions!

I, for one, think that from a purely environmental point of view, a propane fueled outboard is a fantastic development! At sea in commercial cargo vessel the huge two stroke main propulsion engines are changing to "dual fuel" and even propane powered versions. This is a huge development for environmental considerations.

I do think though that when a new technology is introduced it should be that the developer/seller provides training to the consumer. In other words to own that Tohatsu then the dealer/seller should provide training to use it... funded by Tohatsu!
 
Dec 13, 2015
499
Catalina Capri 22 1139 Mamaroneck, NY
Love mine. Very reliable. Was out in 30 kts conditions with my Capri 22 and never had a problem. I usually have the throttle open 10-20 percent and make 4+ kts speed. I have the tank under the tiller wedge in on both sides with small fenders while underway and always take it home to weigh so I know how much propane is left....
 
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Likes: TOOMENETOYS
May 24, 2004
6,788
CC 30 South Florida


Ay, Ay looking for disaster to happen. It only takes one time for something to go wrong and KABUM!! Read up on the properties and dangers of propane. At the very least store up on deck until you can install a proper enclosure.
 
Feb 15, 2018
12
Catalina 22 12512 WILLIAMSBURG
In this pic you can see the white bilge vent hose that runs down and then up to the cowl . I’m not terribly worried about vapor settling , however I do plan to move tank up and into the open area or glass in a dedicated compartment with venting .
 
Jul 28, 2018
57
Catalina 22 TX
Too often managing risk comes down to managing liability. Fortunately, the c22 new design appears to meet the spirit of the regulations (isolated from the cabin, vents downhill and out the scuppers) though not the letter (gaskets, opens only from the top)
 

MitchM

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Jan 20, 2005
960
Nauticat 321 pilothouse 32 Erie PA
ABYC as propane venting rules for a reason. some marinas will not rent you a slip if they know your home install gas or propane does not meet ABYC. I might be extra worried about explosive fumes and the like because my home port is the marina where a bad gasoline fuel system cross connection leaked fumes in a boat with inoperable bilge blowers, and the boat blew up at the gas dock right across from my slip.
 
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Likes: jviss
Sep 30, 2013
3,290
1988 Catalina 22 central Florida
I would a whole lot rather have a propane tank in that so-called "locker" (spits on ground) than the gas tank it was made for.

Propane outboards aren't for me, and probably never will be. But I would sleep MUCH more soundly with a propane tank sitting on an open shelf at my feet (which is what that "locker" is) than a gasoline tank in the same spot. I know from a lifetime of experience which one is likelier to leak.
 

jviss

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Feb 5, 2004
4,627
Tartan 3800 Westport, MA
My marina won't allow boats that aren't insured. Insurance generally requires a survey. A propane tank without a proper locker won't pass survey. If you rig it after and have a loss, you will be denied coverage, not only for your boat, but for any damage it causes. Not to mention, you could die.
 

jviss

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Feb 5, 2004
4,627
Tartan 3800 Westport, MA
I would a whole lot rather have a propane tank in that so-called "locker" (spits on ground) than the gas tank it was made for.

Propane outboards aren't for me, and probably never will be. But I would sleep MUCH more soundly with a propane tank sitting on an open shelf at my feet (which is what that "locker" is) than a gasoline tank in the same spot. I know from a lifetime of experience which one is likelier to leak.
I get it, you'd prefer a knife to your throat than a gun to your head. :)
 
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May 23, 2016
1,014
Catalina 22 #12502 BSC
jviss....let's say you have a C22, (perhaps you've had one, or have one), what would be/what is your preferred method of propulsion gas v. propane (given today's options), and stowage of same (fuel)....appreciate your input, just seeking knowledge here, being relatively new to this...
 

jviss

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Feb 5, 2004
4,627
Tartan 3800 Westport, MA
I've never had a C22, but I had a Compac 16! I prefer gas, I think. It's available everywhere, and gas outboards, and people who know them and fix them far outnumber propane motor experts. That said, I appreciate the appeal of a propane engine. If I had a C22, and it had a safe propane locker, I might indeed go for a propane fueled motor.
 

JRT

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Feb 14, 2017
1,970
Catalina 310 211 Lake Guntersville, AL
I pretty much also arrived at the same conclusion jviss did. Since my 76 Oday doesn't have a proper locker and modifing the boat wasn't on my list, I went gas. If I had a small C22 I would want as little extra weight too so would probably stick with something smaller then even a 5-6 hp, 40 lbs vs 60 lbs is a nice saving and a lot easier to take on and off.
 
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Grotto

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Feb 18, 2018
237
Catalina 22 Wilmington
So I just ordered my sailpro propane. Poured over the manual online. Any thoughts on break-in process. Do I run it in a barrel at ilde? What Good time to change oil bottom end oil, I am not likely to run it weekly ( stupid work) but hoping for twice a month so I could possibly be in the break in period for half a year
 
Mar 20, 2004
1,662
Hunter 356 and 216 Portland, ME
Love it! starts on one pull and runs smoothly, plenty of power. I too wish they would make a light 2-3 hp version for the dinghy - I'd throw away my Lehr.
The tohatsu pushes our 216 better than my 5hp merc and no gas issues. Also, for a permanent mount they have a mounted remote throttle kit.
 

AaronD

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Aug 10, 2014
537
Catalina 22 9874 Newberg, OR / Olympia, WA
But gasoline fumes also are heavier than air. So if you have a safe gas can locker why not store propane there?
My not-a-chemist understanding: Propane's vapor pressure is much higher - something like ~850 kPa vs ~60. So it evaporates (much) more readily at room temperature. Thus, a propane tank at room temp is under considerable pressure (duh - that's why we put propane in strong metal or fiberglass tanks and hefty valves, and don't need the same strength for a gas tank).

So if a gasoline tank or hose has a leak, it will vent fumes very slowly (and normal air currents will at least have some chance disperse the vapors). If a propane system leaks, the entire contents of the tank will evaporate quickly, easily filling the space (hull). The propane will obviously create an explosive risk; if it isn't sparked, it will displace oxygen, creating a suffocation risk as well. So a space we might consider reasonably safe for a gasoline tank wouldn't necessarily be safe for propane.

Our resident chemist @thinwater might chime in and correct me or give a better explanation. If so, believe him, not me :)

A fuel vapor alarm will detect vapors of either kind (and other hydrocarbons as well). Recommended (FWIW - on my 1981 C-22, I moved the fuel tank into the cockpit. The space under the tiller isn't used for much anyway. And we use the 'fuel locker' space for a drink cooler instead).
 
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Sep 30, 2013
3,290
1988 Catalina 22 central Florida
So if a gasoline tank or hose has a leak, it will vent fumes very slowly

Unless it leaks liquid very quickly ...

If a propane system leaks, the entire contents of the tank will evaporate quickly

Unless it leaks very slowly ...





Sorry, I couldn't help myself. I'm just busting your chops. Sort of. :biggrin:;):beer:


 
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Nov 13, 2007
22
C&C 37 Plus East Greenwich RI
DON'T BUY IT! It is the hardest starting outboard I've ever owned. The manuals start procedure works after about 40+ pulls. The procedure I use is to connect the tank, open the valve, 1/2 throttle, full choke, give it 2 good pulls and wait about 5 min. Then it still takes 4 or 5 good pulls to get it running. SLOWLY open the choke. Once it's warmed up it is very easy starting. This motor would be perfect with electric start.
 

Grotto

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Feb 18, 2018
237
Catalina 22 Wilmington
So I have been going over all the AYBC spec’s for a propane locker. Most of it is all pretty common sense. Sealed space with vent outside. Grommeted pass throughs inside cabin, now other bits of them refer to “in house” propane for stoves heaters etc and make sense if you are using the tank for those purposes. Regulator inside locker, and a remote switched solenoid for shutoff. Don’t want to leave a stove charged and possibly leaking. For the purpose of fueling our outboards that complexity is overkill. The engine has its own regulator (manual recommends not to use one) and the only line in play here charges a device hung on the back of the boat. So that really leaves a sealed vented locker (still not a thing on my 83) which really is the same need for an internal fuel tank as well. And chaff protection for the fuel line where it passes through. I have seen MANY photos of burning pleasure craft because the owner didn’t turn on the bilge vents before starting their engines. Yes propane is a dangerous substance, so is gasoline, both need to be treated with respect.
 
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