I have a 9.8hp Nissan mounted off the transom now. No smoke, and quiet operation. The only thing I don't like about it is that you have to hang over the stern to operate the controls, or shut it down, raise the motor mount and then tilt the engine. Of course there is the problem of the prop coming out of the water if choppy, short steep waves.
I've taken a smaller, older outboard off the transom of my Columbia 26 MkII and really like it better now that it's in the well (though the lack of steering in reverse seems to be the main sacrifice, I really like the ease of operation). So I'm getting ready to order a quieter, newer motor to put in the well permanently.
I'm thinking about the Tohatsu 9.8HP 4 stroke. Can anyone comment on whether it's likely to be too big or too powerful in the well, and if I should get the 15" short shaft? It seems like it might be ideal. Is there a better/less expensive motor that anyone would recommend?
We considered going with the inboard, but it looks like it would cost more to repower that way than the boat's worth, but if anyone has any advise either way, I'd appreciate it.