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The Outboard Outburst

Nov. 18, 1957
Nov. 18, 1957

Table of Contents
Nov. 18, 1957

From The Flyways
Acknowledgments
a+$+x+f+b
Spectacle
Events & Discoveries
Bowling
  • Whether you already average 200, would like to, or simply seek fun and companionship on the lanes, here is a revolutionary guide for you—16 illustrated pages in which Bowling Editor Victor Kalman presents in detail, for the first time, the scientific style of the sport's greatest figure. Your game is bound to improve after you learn the 10 SECRETS OF BOWLING

Boxing
Outboards
Dan Hodge: Boxer
19th Hole: The Readers Take Over
Pat On The Back

The Outboard Outburst

Engines and boats are bigger for 1958, but the biggest news is the first diesel outboard ever

By Thomas H. Lineaweaver

The American penchant for going places fast and comfortably is something outboard engine and boat manufacturers have been quick to recognize. But the most remarkable engineering advance of the past year, perhaps of the past 50 years, is the development of the first diesel-powered outboard engine, a two-cycle, self-scavenging, opposed-piston motor, which will soon be offered to the public by American M.A.R.C. (manufacture and research company) Inc. of Ingle-wood, Calif. In the American MARC diesel the outboard boatman will be getting an engine that has no carburetor, no sparkplugs and no magneto. There will be no gasoline fire hazard. And in the American MARC, they will also be getting a design in which the fuel is precombusted, saving the bulk of diesel combustion chambers, and a space-saving, weight-saving, two-pistons-in-one cylinder. More, in this unique engine, the cylinder cleans itself of exhaust gases (see left) without the valves and scavenging pumps demanded in conventional diesel design. Heretofore, the diesel has been too heavy and cumbersome to be suited to outboard production, but these innovations give twice the power in half the space. The first production model will be an engine rated at 7½ hp. More powerful engines, to be developed simply by adding extra cylinders through in-line construction, are planned for the future. Cost of the 7½-horse diesel will be about 25% above that of a comparable gas engine, or about $325.

This is an article from the Nov. 18, 1957 issue Original Layout

THE HIGH AND THE MIGHTY

High-domed Mercury Mark 78 (left) is the biggest production outboard on the market. Its six cylinders deliver 70 hp. yet by stacking one cylinder on top of another in an inline design 1 the engine head is so narrowed that two Mark 78s can be easily mounted side by side on a 34-inch transom, giving water skiers as well as hefty cruisers (next page) speeds up to 40 mph. By arranging the connecting rods so that no two pistons thrust backward or forward at the same time, the 78 vibrates far less than might be expected of such a powerful unit. Rubber mounts 2 reduce vibration even further. Besides these innovations, the Mercury six-cylinder is the first production motor that can be run in reverse from pistons through to propeller. In conventional engines the propeller is reversed through a system of gears; in the Mark 78 the crankshaft itself reverses its direction and the engine runs backward. As a result, all controls—starting, throttle and directional shifting can be centralized in one lever. List price for the Mark 78: $960.

Mighty Evinrude and Johnson engines each get tremendous pulling power from a big four-cylinder engine, the first banked V-type construction incorporated into outboard design. In V-type outboards four cylinders 1 fire alternately, delivering four power strokes per revolution to a short, sturdy crankshaft 2. Each piston, as it fires, is balanced by a counterthrust from another piston, so that vibration is virtually eliminated. The Johnson and the Evinrude, called Super Sea-Horse 50 and the Starflite respectively in the high-styled 1958 models shown at right, are rated at 50 hp. But in manufacturers' tests the engine, mounted on a 20-foot boat carrying five people, pulled four water skiers from a deep-water start, indicating an actual power potential well beyond the standard horsepower rating. Other important engineering advances in the Evinrude and Johnson are a thermostatic recirculating cooling system that keeps the engine at the most efficient operating temperature, and a downdraft carburetor which vaporizes the fuel more efficiently before burning. Cost for each is $840, including electric starter unit.

GOOD NEWS FOR FISHERMEN

As outboard motors grow bigger and more powerful, boatbuilders have been able to design bigger, faster, roomier hulls to go with them. This has been good news to budget-cruising men, who have been ready for bigger boats for a long time but until recently have not had engines that were powerful enough to push them. All of this good fortune, however, has not been shared by the nation's 20-odd million fishermen, who often describe themselves as forgotten men when it comes to outboard hulls.

Their lament has had considerable foundation. In the scramble to build and market interesting hulls, manufacturers have tended to concentrate on high-fashion weekend cruisers, many of which are not at all well adapted to fishing. At least, that is the opinion of the anglers, particularly those who fish on salt water or large inland lakes and have some strong utilitarian ideas about outboard boats.

First of all, they want a large cockpit in which they can move around with freedom. Second, they want plenty of stowage space for their fishing gear. They are likely to have no use whatever for decorative, protuberant fixtures that may foul a fishing line and have no practical function. And they certainly have no use whatever for a boat that gives its occupants a heavy soaking and a good scare, or worse, in hard weather.

The Trojan Bimini-22 (pictured below) is a member of a stout, new breed of outboard cruisers that has been designed specifically for the practiced angler. Built by the Trojan Boat Company, Lancaster, Pa., it illustrates as well as any stock boat on the market today the fact that an inexpensive outboard can be strong and able enough for fall fishing weather.

The Bimini is 22 feet long, with an eight-foot beam and a cockpit big enough to warm the heart of even a tuna fisherman. It is strongly ribbed with oak and is planked with mahogany and plywood. With its deep, nicely flared bow, it handles easily in a heavy chop. In the cabin there is a head, two bunks and space for either fishing tackle or a galley stove. Best of all, the Bimini can take an angler where he wants to go. In it he can troll for striped bass outside the surf at Wrightsville Beach, N.C. or for school tuna in Cape Cod Bay. He can cruise the Gulf Stream off Palm Beach for sailfish, or tackle marlin in the blue water off Guaymas. And he can do it without sending his wife or the Coast Guard into a nervous decline every time the wind starts to blow. The only limitations are those imposed by the prudence and common-sense seamanship of the skipper.

As sturdy as the Bimini is, however, the Trojan company has no intention of stopping at 22 feet. Now that 50- and 70-horsepower motors are available, Trojan is scheduling a 27-foot outboard cruiser for production, and another company, LePage Craft of Maple Grove, Quebec, recently launched a 31-foot behemoth. The LePage 31-footer is fine for quiet days on quiet lakes but is primarily a pleasure cruiser rather than a fisherman and must still be regarded in the experimental stage as far as offshore work is concerned. The Bimini-22, however, is a proved rough-water boat, one that any weekend fisherman would like to have for fast runs into deep water and one that any weekender can have for the relatively modest price of $2,545.

OFFSHORE MIDGET

All the design news in fishing boats this year is not for cruiser men. For example, the sleek, compact runabout below, with its bristling outriggers and sturdy fighting chair, is tailor-made for the low-budget deep-sea angler by Feather Craft, Inc. of Atlanta, Georgia. It is one of the few stock runabouts that mounts a fighting chair and outriggers—equipment usually found only on 26-foot-plus inboard cruisers. Yet the light, compact Feather Craft, fully equipped, can easily be towed from port to port behind an auto and launched from a beach or ramp. The hull is 52 S magnesium-aluminum sheet reinforced with extruded ribs, which is both exceedingly strong and easily repaired if punctured. It weighs only 425 pounds without engines, yet it is 15 feet 10 inches long, with a beam of 6 feet. The cockpit is roomy and stowage space remarkably ample for a small boat. Built-in Styrofoam flotation increases the buoyancy of the boat and makes it virtually unsinkable. The transom can take a twin engine installation, and two 35-horse-power outboards will push the Clipper over 35 knots.

Specifically, the Feather Craft Clipper is adapted for the angler who wants to run out into comparatively open water and still be able to high-tail it for home if bad weather starts brewing. Buzzards Bay, the Florida Keys, La Paz in Mexico or California's Catalina Channel are waters where the Clipper can prove its mettle. Completely outfitted with outriggers, fighting chair and canvas top it sells for only $1,209.

ILLUSTRATIONJACK KUNZ1
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ILLUSTRATIONPedestal fits into quarter-inch plate bolted through cap on main keelson beam and secured to ‚⅛-inch aluminum reinforcing plate.

HOW THE DIESEL WORKS

Air enters via manifolds 1 through third ports into cylinder 2 when pistons 3 are in dead center. As pistons move outward on power stroke, they block third (intake) ports 6 and compress air in crankcase 4. As stroke continues, pistons pass exhaust ports 5, and burned gases are blown out. Next instant, transfer ports 6 open and compressed air in crankcase rushes into cylinder, forcing out remaining gases and leaving charge of fresh air for next stroke. Pistons start back on return stroke, closing transfer and exhaust ports. Fresh air in cylinder is compressed. Fuel is injected from precombustion chamber and exploded. Pistons apply power by simultaneous thrusts onto crankshafts 7, right-hand shaft transmits power via gear team 8 to drive shaft 9.

THE TROJAN BIMINI-22

1 Removable top and face panels for access to outboard engines
2 Self-bailing motor well
3 Fuel tanks, 15-gal. capacity each
4 3-inch foam rubber cushions, removable to install helm seat
5 Bunk panel, 6 feet by 2 feet, with stowage underneath
6 Helm seat removable to use berths
7 Sunshade cabin top takes side and after curtains
8 Opening, wraparound windshield for protection and ventilation
9 Control panel
10 Raised deck
11 Forecastle hatch
12 Head and bilge pump, hinged cover
13 Two seats in forepeak with stowage under

THE FEATHER CRAFT CLIPPER

1 12-foot telescoping aluminum outrigger
2 Canopy folds inside windshield
3 Adjustable outrigger fitting with aluminum or wood backing plate beneath permanent deck
4 Removable side cushions
5 Permanent seats for light tackle trolling with Styrofoam flotation material inside
6 Custom-built collapsible aluminum fighting chair
7 Rod holders may be attached on coaming
8 Canopy attaches here in raised position
9 Self-bailing well with gas tanks under
10 Handles for beaching boat
11 Twin outboards for added speed and safety in offshore fishing