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Old 21 November 2002, 08:01   #1
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Country: UK - England
Town: winchester
Boat name: Pilchard
Make: Ribcraft
Engine: Merc 90 4s
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Mercury f90 four stroke

I am off this w/end to trial a 2nd hand (1999) Ribcraft 585 fitted with a 2 year-old (2000) Mercury F90. This is the boat on which, after much research, I have set my heart, but my 'dream ticket' motor was always a Yamaha f100.
I know nothing about the Mercury f90 motor in particular, but have not heard great things about Mercury in general (reliability problems?) I have read that the 'Power head' of the Mercury is identical to the Yam f100 (Pardon my ignorance - what does that mean? is it everything above the drive leg or is it only the cylinder head?)
If anyone has knowledge of this engine - good / bad or indifferent, I am grateful for any input as this is going to be a serious investment for me & my family!
Secondly, is 90hp on this boat appropriate for family (2 adult, 2 children) boating in Solent and around S Coast with occasional donut / wakeboard afternoons planned?

Any thoughts / comments, Please
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Old 21 November 2002, 08:14   #2
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Good hull, and a fair amount of power for that size of boat.
Sould be fine for towing, if a little fast (you dont have to use all the power though).
Can't comment on the engine.
Tiger
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Old 21 November 2002, 08:27   #3
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I'll second Tiger's comments!

It's a cracking boat, and 90hp is a good size engine to have on it for all round use. I don't know anything about the Mercury F90 either though . . .

I reckon you'll have a lot of fun with this boat.

John
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Old 21 November 2002, 09:51   #4
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Good boat as other say. I believe Jools has this combo so try asking him for his thoughts?
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Old 21 November 2002, 10:31   #5
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Country: UK - England
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Boat name: Pilchard
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Thanks Alan,...Have already left a personal message to Jools and drooled over the photos of his very smart and much newer outfit!
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Old 21 November 2002, 11:50   #6
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Hi the boat is great . The merc 90 f stroke is a good engine. It provides a steady amount of power up until just under flat stick and will be perfectly suited to the boat. I believe that the boat is speced for up to a 115 or 120 but as the merc is a 4 stroke and heaver it will be about perfect. I have only used the 90 half a dozen times but have had no problems it is economical and provides good power. I have used the merc 75 alot and that is a great block never fails and provides loads more power than a Honda 75. Merc sell their legs to Honda who spray them silver. Hope that is of some help.
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Old 21 November 2002, 12:55   #7
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I have this exact set-up, bought a year ago, then one year old. I have used the boat on a couple of cruises with Biboa (last one a one way trip to Weymouth!) and several "solo" trips including across to the Scilly's, 2 adults, 2 "kids" plus luggage for 4 for a fortnight. It's a great all rounder, economical, quiet, safe, reasonable speed (25 knots cruise is comfortable), pulls skiers no problem and is just big enough, and well made enough, to take some serious weather. Ask all the ribbers and they all wish for a little more length (no offence lads ), but that's irrespective of whether the've got 5.85m or 9m!! As for the engine, I can't compare to the Yam but mine's performed faultlessly. We've had a great first year's ribbing in this boat and I have no hesitation in recommending it to you. If I can be of any further help, please send a PM.
Regards,
Dave
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Old 21 November 2002, 14:30   #8
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Country: UK - England
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Boat name: Pilchard
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Thanks to all for a fantastic and encouraging response - are there any 'professional' (training schools etc. ) Mercury f90 users out there with experience of really hard / prolonged use and abuse of this engine?
The boat is a distinctive blue / orange colour, called 'Pilchard' - anyone come across her in / around the Solent?
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Old 21 November 2002, 14:40   #9
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5.85 Ribcraft

I ahve a 5.85 with 115 Evinrude Ficht which I abuse dreadfully and am always feeling guilty about how I treat it and the engine . Both behave faultlessly and are not nannied in any way . Power is about right I had a 100 merc at first but changed to the 115 .Drop me an E mail if I can be of any help .
John
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Old 21 November 2002, 14:51   #10
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Well I'll put the cat amongst the pigeons then. We bought a new f90 merc with our humber new in 2001. It seized solid in poole harbour entrance when the oil pump seal went 3 weeks after purchase. Humbers were great but sowesters were struggling and soon after went into receivership. They replaced the engine within days but only after pressure from humbers and myself. The replacement engine seemed fine but the paperwork for it was not and I was far from happy. To Barrus's (and Humbers who pushed the action along) enduring credit they sorted a replacement to the replacement soon after they took over the agency and with proper paperwork.
Apparently all sorts of recalls followed the incident. the replacement mercs have been totally reliable, quite, smooth, economical and a pleasure to run. Our boats are in regular use and everyone loves the Merc. But that first incident still lurks somewhere in the recesses of the mind. Something about being between a rock and a hard place - to be precise the seacat, the chain ferry, and a strong onshore wind. The benefits of an experienced crew saved the day but I could have done without it-oil and petrol all over my nice new boat!
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