OT: Gas mix in outboard incorrect, not enough oil?, how long to ruin the engine?

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There will be a sticker or placard on the engine and/or gas tank that specifies the required mixture ratio.
Ask your son/daughter specifically what they did regarding fueling the boat over the course of the week, write it down, and repeat it here. That information is very pertinent and important to this discussion. Without it, you may as well be admitting guilt.
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And a lot of places are outlawing the two strokes. Five to ten years ago, you never heard of them
Steve
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No place in the eastern seaboard that I've heard of has outlawed them. Two strokes are still hugely common in outboards. Emissions standards are reducing the nimber of new ones made. But in boat usage motor can last many years. The majority of the population simply doesn't put that many hours on a boat. So there are still lots of olds ones running fine and likely to keep running for along time to come.
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On 9/7/2011 8:53 AM, Norminn wrote:

The check is in the mail. Just took one more strongly worded email, with cites of the state statutes for returning security deposits.
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wrote:

They're not very smart including a boat usage. Boats are really easy to damage, The "next" renter could have just as easily forgot the oil themselves. Around here any decent sized boat rental costs $150 to $200 a day.
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On 9/9/2011 8:23 AM, jamesgangnc wrote:

$500 is a lot better than just letting it sit at the dock. Well, until recently, anyway :o)
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A brand new outboard suitable for a pontoon will start around 4 or 5 grand and go up. And sizeable used one is worth 2 grand or more. There are outboards that cost over $10k, admittedly too big for most pontoons. So how's their $500 looking now?
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clipped

Expensive. I did some google shopping yesterday and saw what I believe are similar engines for $14-1700. If I can make up the cost of property by renting it out for three weeks, I would consider it a hell of a deal. I don't give a rats ass what it cost THEM - they screwed themselves by not passing along important info to their renters* and then tried to screw us. We were very careful and respectful in our use of all of their property, at all times.
*They mentioned nothing about a gas mix to us, so I assume the next renter got the same. If they aren't informed enough to pass along that information to a tenant, then they learned an expensive lesson. All in my family who operated the boat are experienced boaters, so all the more careful with their boat.
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I don't think you know what you are shopping for unless the pontoon had a very small engine. Or you were looking at used.
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On Sat, 10 Sep 2011 05:52:14 -0700 (PDT), jamesgangnc

He was most definitely looking at used. If the engine required premix it most definitely was NOT new - so why would a renter be liable for the cost of a NEW engine?? ANd if you are renting a boat and motor for the price the OP was renting, the owner would NOT be providing a new engine.
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On Sep 9, 9:15am, "Stormin Mormon"

Yah, let's guess at it! How about a fresh mix if you're not sure?
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