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Old 21 February 2010, 13:32   #1
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redband / blueband - any ideas please ?

Hi everyone,
just a quick question - does anyone know the difference between a red band and a blue band Mercury outboard (apart from the obvious colour !!). I just wondered why they are two different brands - is one brand older than the other, or something different ? I have tried the Mercury website with NO luck = surely lots of people know the difference ?
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Old 21 February 2010, 15:20   #2
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The Redbands the old one and the blue band is newer...... But they are both still old !
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Old 21 February 2010, 18:26   #3
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Red band is 1972 or older from memory. Blueband is '73 to 85/86ish.
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Old 22 February 2010, 16:00   #4
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Thankyou, that clears that up then, so if I have an old redband, does it mean just because it is old it is obviously no good, or does someone have something good to say about them ?
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Old 22 February 2010, 18:51   #5
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Thankyou, that clears that up then, so if I have an old redband, does it mean just because it is old it is obviously no good, or does someone have something good to say about them ?
Hard question, that. It depends on the condition of it under the cowl.
Assuming it's your 20hp you're talking about (it's common for redbands to have blueband cowls on-people did it to try and make them look newer) they were good when new and the Blueband 200 spares should fit so there's bits 'about' for it.

However, it's nearly 40 years old at the best and that's likely to cause issues with things like electrics, reed valves,bearings,seals etc and financially it won't be worth repairing if it goes wrong. I wouldn't want to rely on an unrestored one.
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Old 23 February 2010, 06:45   #6
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I'll second Nos on this one. Mine is a mid / late 80s version of a lump that was designed late in the late 60s. It will depend on the individual engine: I got mine for a song, and by the time it's totally rebuilt I'll probably have spent as much as had I bought a secondhand one from a dealer with a bit of warranty. It will however be a new engine. The other reason I decided to go for it was that it's a ridiculously lightweight engine for it's HP.

If you know the workings & electrics are good, there really isn't a lot to go wrong, but as said, when it does......
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Old 26 February 2010, 07:06   #7
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Not saying they all are ,but from past experience with a few members of our boat club that have/had them ,the old ones seem to have a lot of problems not as much pistons /crank ,more the starter motor /carbs/ solinoids,,,electrical stuff ,though suppose same can be said for most old engines.
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Old 26 February 2010, 07:38   #8
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& electrics are good, there really isn't a lot to go wrong, but as said, when it does......
Like no compression on the top two cylinders and on the good cylinder no spark!
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Old 07 March 2010, 09:03   #9
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redbands / bluebands

Thanks for all your comments guys.

This is what I did :

removed both spark plugs, cleaned them and put a little 3 in 1 oil down the cylinders.

Removed carb and cleaned and replaced fuel lines under the hood.

Thought i would give it a try before fitting overhauled gearbox.

Checked for spark and fuel delivery - and then pulled !

Nothing doing at first, but with endevour and lots of rests in between, I eventually got it to fire after about 30 minutes !

Funny thing was, it ticked over quite nicely !

So, my opinion on this engine which I believe has been lying unused in a boat yard for the best part of 20 years, seems to be it is OK for what I paid for it (59).

I will re-fit the gearbox later and try it in water - will keep you posted !
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Old 07 March 2010, 10:04   #10
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It does look tidy.
It looks like the wrong shaft length though. Isn't the F3 supposed to take a short shaft? It might just be the angle of the pic though.
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Old 07 March 2010, 11:09   #11
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It does look tidy.
It looks like the wrong shaft length though. Isn't the F3 supposed to take a short shaft? It might just be the angle of the pic though.
Yep Deffo wrong shaft length. !!
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Old 07 March 2010, 12:44   #12
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Yes Nos, the original blueband I had was a shortshaft and fitted perfectly. Unfortunately this one is a longshaft, and as I don't want to increase the height of the transom, I may need to resell it and find something more suitable .
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Old 08 March 2010, 07:39   #13
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(59).
Bargain! At that price it's a disposable engine!


One thing I found with mine - assuming yours has the same carb(s) as mine, the choke isn't so much a choke as a "more fuel valve". Net result is that the usual temptation to open the throttle on start just results in it leaning the mix back out again, effectivley kiling any choking effect form pulling that lever! Took me ages to figure that one out......

Now starts (well, it did befroe I blew it up!) pretty much first time every time with "choke" & no throttle.
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Old 08 March 2010, 17:24   #14
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Yes Nos, the original blueband I had was a shortshaft and fitted perfectly. Unfortunately this one is a longshaft, and as I don't want to increase the height of the transom, I may need to resell it and find something more suitable .
Have you still got the old blueband 20hp? You should be able to swap the powerhead from the redband to the blueband.
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Old 10 March 2010, 13:04   #15
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Hi Nos,
I wouldn't be able to swap the powerhead. If you remember , I was unable to remove the gear shaft from the blueband.
I will just make sure the redband runs efficiently now, take a 'running video' and put it up on ebay.
Then I will have to start looking for something cheap and cheerful - up to about 30 hp - to eventually get my little rib on the water.

If anyone has a suitable motor to sell, up to about 500, please let me know,

Thanks,
ANDY
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Old 07 April 2010, 12:43   #16
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Just use a nice plate to lift the engine up a bit.
Im going to do it to my s400.

Good engines are not as easy to find as you might think.

If you know that your engine is a good one keep it and lift the transom.



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Old 07 April 2010, 14:22   #17
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Surely the transom on a F3 is a plywood insert inside a Hypalon membrane. Just build a taller plywood piece?
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