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Winching your engine off the dinghy?

May 2, 2019
176
Hunter 38 St. Pete Florida
I'm trying to figure out the best method to winch a 15-20 HP Engine off a dinghy and mount it on the seat rail on the stern. Anyone have any ideas on how to do it without having to drill holes in the boat and anyone know the best setup on the market to mount the engine on the stern seat?
 

Joe

Jun 1, 2004
6,770
Catalina 27 Mission Bay, San Diego
I'm trying to figure out the best method to winch a 15-20 HP Engine off a dinghy and mount it on the seat rail on the stern. Anyone have any ideas on how to do it without having to drill holes in the boat and anyone know the best setup on the market to mount the engine on the stern seat?
Garhauermarine.com sells a reasonably priced, collapsible, pole mounted lifting davit that braces to the pushpit rail …. but I don't for the life me understand why you wouldn't want to drill a few mounting holes to secure the base bracket. This one lifts up to 150 lbs.... so... know your numbers before you invest.


As far as storing it on the stern "seat".... uh, I'm having trouble visualizing that. What you may consider is building (or buying) a platform that clamps to the stern rails near the lifting davit. Here's a picture of one made by Edson... which means it is very overpriced.... but you can use it as reference for a DIY project or finding a less expensive version.
 
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May 2, 2019
176
Hunter 38 St. Pete Florida
I don't feel comfortable drilling holes myself and hiring nut jobs in this area is $150 drive time to you and $150 an hour afterwards. Thats even climbing up the mast to change a light. :) Thank you for your post.
 
Jan 11, 2014
4,159
Sabre 362 113 Fair Haven, NY
The choice for working on boats is to pay high prices for the yard to do the work or learn to do it yourself. $150 an hour seems a bit high, I would expect $75-100 an hour, but I"m not in Florida.

I've had both the Garhauer and the Nova Lift, of the two I found the Garhauer easier to use and it could be a one person job. I find the Nova Lift difficult to use by myself.

For a 15 HP outboard, the Edson mount is about the only one available. There are a couple of other options available at Defender for smaller lighter motors.
 
Jan 22, 2008
7,078
Beneteau 323 Annapolis MD
That's alot of weight for a 27-footer. Do you have a bimini? When I made mine, instead of tiedown straps to the stern rail from the back bimini bow, I used SS upprights. I only hoist a 5hp, but I secure a multi-block system (like for a man overboard) to the bow at the top on the uprights. Works well for th 55 pounds.
 
Jul 24, 2005
1,719
Beneteau 323 Manistee, MI
I have a Novalift mounted on the port quarter adjacent to the rail mounted motor bracket.
The motor bracket on the 323 is just barely adequate in its stock form and needs to be modified in a manner similar to the overpriced Edson bracket.

My 8hp 4 cycle Yamaha at 88 pounds (slight overkill for need) is fitted with a harness which makes it easy to hook up. Because of the way I located the hoist, I can use the sheet winch to handle the motor. It can be done with one person but obviously safer and easier with a second.
 
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Feb 21, 2008
1,621
Hunter 29.5 Punta Gorda
I installed mine myself. It was only 4 small holes in the lid to the propane compartment to install the mounting "ball". The upright arm fastened to the pushpit with nuts and bolts. The "ball" part was secured with nuts and bolts through the propane hatch lid. Really easy install.
 
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Jun 14, 2010
925
Quorning Dragonfly 1200 home
@pumpkinpie The above posts are good advice: You have two choices. Use your tools or use your wallet. It is really a good idea to learn to DIY because things fail when you're "out there" and boat service businesses work at the dock or in the yard by appointment.
I've done so many upgrades that my dealer once joked he thinks I've drilled more holes than the boat builder. Learn which sealants to use, and where. Just remember you want to use a sealant on mechanical fasteners (screws and bolts, thru-hulls etc.) or anything you might plan to remove later (hatches or ports). Permanent adhesives such as 5200 should only be used where the bond strength of the adhesive is crucial to the job (e.g. hull-deck joints) and you don't plan to remove it for the life of the boat. Silicone should generally be avoided on a boat except special situations (e.g. edges of polycarbonate windshields, or metal-metal sealing above waterline).
 
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May 2, 2019
176
Hunter 38 St. Pete Florida
That's alot of weight for a 27-footer. Do you have a bimini? When I made mine, instead of tiedown straps to the stern rail from the back bimini bow, I used SS upprights. I only hoist a 5hp, but I secure a multi-block system (like for a man overboard) to the bow at the top on the uprights. Works well for th 55 pounds.
Ours is a 38ft Hunter. Yes, we do have a Bimini. I think the weight on the engine is about 115 pounds.
 
Jan 19, 2010
6,680
Hunter 26 Lake Martin AL
Is this the O.B. for your dinc? If so, I'd recommend down sizing to a 6 hp or so. A 15 H.P. seems like overkill for a dinc.
 
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Oct 29, 2016
1,401
Hunter 41 DS Port Huron
I would be concerned for mounting that much weight on the stern rail seat supports, we have a 4 HP and engine mount and even that in rough conditions flexes the framing especially if you add the weight of a person sitting on the seat. The problem comes from the higher CG of where the engine would mount on top of the top rail. For lifting I have thought of but have not fabricated as of yet an arm which would easily connect to the boom and extend far enough back to be used as a engine/MOB recovery lift. This would be simple to fabricate and would store easily in the port side lazarette.
 
May 2, 2019
176
Hunter 38 St. Pete Florida
I've done work to the boat so far. I'll do it myself if I can find the right device that will work considering I have a Bimini as it can get in the way of things. If the dinghy is 9.6 wouldn't a 4-5 hp engine be a tad to small? I weight 250, wife 135 and son is 45 pounds. Then toss in diving gear etc..

Work here in Florida is crazy. I asked a fellow the other day about changing out my lights for me to LED. on the mast like anchor light etc. I have the LED lights and he wanted $150 to drive to me $150 an hour afterwards. Now that's nuts! I told my wife we need to find an idea that has something to do with Marine.
 
Feb 5, 2004
3,934
Tartan 3800 Westport, MA
I find it humorous that folks, when mentioning the Edson stern rail outboard mounting bracket apply the adjective "over-priced," while acknowledging it's the only one that will work in certain situations. BTW, the sell both aluminum and stainless steel versions at $440 and $350, respectively.

However, even this robust mount is limited to 100 lb. load. That is less than any U.S.-available 15 HP motor that I am aware of, i.e., a four-stroke. Only with a two-stroke will you get under 100 lb. in 15 or 20 HP.

In addition, even a two-stroke 15HP motor is a huge load to put on a stern rail.

I have a 9' RIB with a 15HP two-stroke, and I just tow it with the motor on the RIB. Have been doing so for 19 years with nary a mishap.
 
Jun 4, 2009
3,234
Pearson 530 Admiralty Bay, Bequia SVG
We use a 15, 4 stroke and have found that a lot of weight to hang on the pushpit. We have rebuilt our davits to hold the dink and the motor and that seems a much better option than taking the motor off. I have noticed that those who can pull their dinks out of the water the most easily do so the most often, usually every night, thereby keeping the bottom clean and the dink secure from thieves.
 
Jul 27, 2011
3,363
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
I have a 9' RIB with a 15HP two-stroke, and I just tow it with the motor on the RIB. Have been doing so for 19 years with nary a mishap.
Yeah, but where have you gone like that? How many hours of towing? PP plans a trip to the Bahamas from St. Petersburg. But at this point, I somehow doubt he’s ever made it past the Sunshine Skyway Bridge (10 n.mi. distant). I’ve met folks here prepping for the Pacific Puddle Jump (3,000 n.mi.) who’ve not even crossed the San Pedro Channel to Catalina Island (21 n.mi.). (Or have gone anywhere else for that matter).

It’s actually hard to know what equipment you will need until you’ve tested a few real-life situations. A 15-hp 4-stroke riding on the stern rail of a 38-ft aft-cockpit yacht will be a very incongruous arrangement, IMHO.
 
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Jul 27, 2011
3,363
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
BTW. Harbors I’ve visited typically have a 5 mph speed limit. So, having an outboard that will plane a 10-ft dink with > 400# of loading won’t be of much use in those places. In addition, FYI, my 9’6” inflatable aluminum RIB allows only a 10 hp MAX.
 
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Jun 4, 2009
3,234
Pearson 530 Admiralty Bay, Bequia SVG
BTW. Harbors I’ve visited have a 5 mph speed limit. So, having an outboard that will plane a 10-ft dink with > 400# of loading won’t be much use in those places. In addition, FYI, my 9’6” inflatable aluminum RIB allows a 10 hp MAX.
I can only think of one harbor down this way that has any speed limit (Rodney Bay) and they have zero enforcement.
We have a 3.5 as a back-up for the 15, 4 stroke, so I think I'm qualified to compare the two. Personally, when it's raining cats and dogs (or just before it does) it's real nice to have the ability to do 20+ knots. And a slow dink is a wet dink in any kind of chop or sea. A fast dink can get up on top of that stuff and keep the passengers (and their gear) dry. The smaller engine is much noisier and burns a great deal more fuel than the 15, 4 stroke.
So, I see the larger engine as a choice of comfort and economy, more than anything else.
 
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Jul 27, 2011
3,363
Bavaria 38E Alamitos Bay
We have a 3.5 as a back-up for the 15, 4 stroke, so I think I'm qualified to compare the two. Personally, when it's raining cats and dogs (or just before it does) it's real nice to have the ability to do 20+ knots. And a slow dink is a wet dink in any kind of chop or sea. A fast dink can get up on top of that stuff and keep the passengers (and their gear) dry. The smaller engine is much noisier and burns a great deal more fuel than the 15, 4 stroke.
So, I see the larger engine as a choice of comfort and economy, more than anything else.
I would agree with all of that, but you’re carrying the stuff on a 53-ft yacht home ported in the Caribbean. Makes perfect sense.
 
Feb 5, 2004
3,934
Tartan 3800 Westport, MA
Yeah, but where have you gone like that? How many hours of towing?
Hundreds of hours of towing, and everywhere from as far West as Larchmont, NY, in the Long Island Sound to as far East as Nantucket; through the canal to P-town; and many places in the Rhode Island Sound Vineyard Sound, and Buzzards Bay. Calm days, rockin' and rollin' days. We almost always tow it. I looked back once, exiting Westport, MA in big waves to see the bottom of my dinghy behind as it was pulled off the top of a wave, still upright. Never swamped, never capsized. Only 'misphap' was a couple of years ago, pounding through 5' waves at the North end of Quicks' Hole, when one of the towing bridle straps parted; my emergency line picked up the slack and it towed slightly sideways, which turned out to be smoother than before!

Seriously, all kinds of weather and waves, no problem.
 

JRT

Feb 14, 2017
1,377
Catalina 310 211 Lake Guntersville, AL
So a completely dumb and out of the box idea I just had, what about twin small 5-6 hp outboards instead of a single monster 15? Twin would add some redundancy and then each could be put on both sides of the stern rail to balance out. Figuring our the linkage might be workable? I loved my small 6 hp Tohatsu 4C on my O'Day 25 and would consider it a great little self contained motor in not a lot of weight.