Homelite Bearcat 55 on a ZZIP?

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RobbieFromCalgary
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Homelite Bearcat 55 on a ZZIP?

Post by RobbieFromCalgary »

Good Day

I know the ZIP is supposed to have a 40hp, I have also seen a bunch with 50hps on them. Long story short is that I was planning on finding a fairly new but used 40hp, 4 stroke, and was figured that would be the way to go.

A buddy has come across a FREE, Homelite Bearcat 55... at first, I was attracted by the free, but the more I look at it the more I think it has the look that a classic wooden boat should have, instead of having a classic boat with a brand new motor. I really want to use this motor for both the looks and to save the several thousand dollars I was going to need to spend. But will a 55hp, 4-stroke from the 60s end up being too much for the ZIP?

Any advice or opinions on this? I don't know much about the Homelite Bearcat 55, I just looked at a bunch of pictures and really liked what I saw.

Thanks for your help!
It's better to start now, you never know if you will be able to later.

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vupilot
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Re: Homelite Bearcat 55 on a ZZIP?

Post by vupilot »

At 239 lbs its on the heavy side for sure. Can it be used, sure it could.

Been there done that on the old motors. It affects the way you look at and use the boat when you arent sure you can trust a boating vacation to an old motor that is hard to find parts for. If the only water you'll use it in is right out your backyard then maybe its for you. Just depends on your goals.

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RobbieFromCalgary
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Re: Homelite Bearcat 55 on a ZZIP?

Post by RobbieFromCalgary »

A really good point, thanks!

I would be lying if I did not say the price was a factor, I think the thing I am more excited about is the classic look. I guess I can get it all working and see how reliable it is before I cut out my transom for it? I think it is a short shaft, and around me, it seems like long shaft motors are allot more available. I would hate to build the boat and be stuck with finding a different motor that is impossible to find.
It's better to start now, you never know if you will be able to later.

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vupilot
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Re: Homelite Bearcat 55 on a ZZIP?

Post by vupilot »

Same thing everywhere regarding short shafts. Finding a 5-20 year old used one in 30-40hp is tough and never close to home when you do find them. You can still order them new though. Heck, finding any good used outboard is tough.

Hercdrvr
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Re: Homelite Bearcat 55 on a ZZIP?

Post by Hercdrvr »

My experience with old outboards is they do not age like other equipment. I wouldn’t hesitate to drive my 55 Chevy truck across the USA, and If it had a mechanical failure there is a good chance I could find a part and fix it myself. This was not the case with a really cool looking 1960’s Evinrude that was cheap.
Getting on the water with a boat is a big commitment, it takes planning and coordination and when the key is turned the engine has to run. Only second to an airplane engine, a boat engine has to be reliable. I have also found that mechanical skills don’t cross pollinate well from auto engines to outboards, they require a unique skill set.
The Homelite Bearcat 55 is a very unique 4 stroke outboard.
Good luck,
Matt B

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