225 Optimax vs. 200 Optimax 225 Optimax vs. 200 Optimax
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    225 Optimax vs. 200 Optimax
from Rene Duzac (  
6/18/1999 4:53:00 PM


 I would Like to here from Mechanics and Owners on the +/-'s of the 2 different motors. I like the idea of extra power but do I loose out on life and reliability? I know theres trade offs, and when I order my boat I would like a better understanding of what I'm getting in to. Thanks for any help. Rene Duzac

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   200 & 225 Optimax are oil guzzlers from Tim (  6/18/1999 5:08:00 PM
 The 200 & 225 Optimax share the same 3.0L block. I would think that you would see little differences in reliability between the 2 motors. I've had a 200 Optimax for a year now with no problems. Be warned this motor is an "oil hog" with many owners reporting oil usage around the 25:1 to 35:1 ratios. In my case, this high oil usage tends to offset most of the fuel savings realized through use of a DFI motor.
    225 Optimax vs. 200 Optimax from Jim Bailey (  6/18/1999 5:26:00 PM
 Rene...I will have to go along with what Tims said. The Optimax is the wave of the future but for now it does use more oil than I think it should. I have a 200 with just over 60 hours on it and haven't had a seconds problem with it. Just got back from the service station and filled the old tub up for a tournament in the morning. Took 6.3 gals of gas and 1.5 qts. of oil to top everything off. If asked if I'd do it again? My answer would be. " In A Heartbeat ". Can't see rowing with the same set of oars when a company has a new pair they want you to try...Just my 2 cents.
   Optimax & Oil from Thinwater (  6/18/1999 6:18:00 PM
 I've got about 60+ hrs on my 1999 225 Optimax. It is a nice engine, instant starts, smokeless operation. Unlike Jim I WOULD NOT buy another one !!! I was sold this engine as a great money saver, less gas, less oil. That's partly right I do save ALOT on gas but I turn right around and put ALL that savings right into the oil tank. I get an AVERAGE of 25:1 gas to oil. When I bought it they told me never worse than 60:1 If you ask me it is just a way for Mercury to sell more oil. All I get from them is a run around and double-talk. Do yourself a favor buy a EFI !
   Hard to look at EFI due to Calif. Regulations. from Rene Duzac (  6/18/1999 7:03:00 PM
 Optimax gaurenteed use until 2006, who knows with the EFI.
   How do they pass the EPA check? from Scott (  6/18/1999 7:37:00 PM
 My relative's Opti uses oil like crazy too. If they use that much oil, how do they pass the epa tests we hear about? Not a bash, just a question.
   Good Question from Rene Duzac (  6/18/1999 7:48:00 PM
 I don't know. All I know is that the Optimax is approved until 2006 so most lake around here are allowing it. Some of the smaller ones are starting not to allow any two strokes. But are considering an Optimax like a 4 stroke because of 2006 regulation. That may be because of fear of a law suit.
   Buy a FICHT from Jason (  6/18/1999 8:21:00 PM
 Although the 97 / 98 are bashed continually on this board, my experience with 1999 225 Evinrude w/ FICHT has been fantastic. Uses hardly any oil, great on gas and does not smoke like the Merc + very quiet. Just ordered my new 2000 Ranger with 200 Evinrude FICHT with RAM injection, think it may be the ultimate. JMO Jason
   Optimax from Matt (  6/18/1999 9:38:00 PM
 I have a 99 200 on my Champion; about 150 hrs. The one thing I agree with is the amount of oil used at high rpm - 4500 plus. Conversely the motor is very frugal in the 3000 - 4000 rpm range. Fished a tourney & ran at wot most of the day. Was shocked at the amount of oil used compared to my usual cruising speed @ 3500 rpm. Maybe a tech could verify my findings?
   What about a pro max from Jim (  6/19/1999 12:59:00 AM
 Does the pro max series have the same oil burning tendancies?
   OPTIMAX OIL USAGE MIScalculation from John (  6/19/1999 10:52:00 AM
 I own an Optimax and disagree that it uses more oil. Yes, when you pump 50 gals of gas into the gas tank you may have to put more oil into the the oil tank than an EFI to top it back off. It's an easy misconception to say (it uses more oil). However, you are still getting more miles per gallon of oil than you would with an EFI. This is in addition to the dramatically improved gas mileage. Trying to compare oil ratios with the EFI is not comparing apples to apples gas. I don't think the folks who say the Optis use more oil are looking at it from the correct angle. If the Optimax used more oil it would smoke more than an EFI and would not have been EPA approved for the 2006. The Optis do get more miles per gallon of oil than an EFI or carbureted motor.
   Question for John from Tim (  6/19/1999 3:23:00 PM
 John, Do you own 2.5L or 3.0L Optimax? I'm beginning to see a trend and it looks like the majority of the people who complain about excessive oil consumption are 3.0L owners. An awful lot of 2.5L owners say their motors are great on oil. Mercury has advertised a MAXIMUM WOT oil usage ratio of 60:1 for Optimax engines. The advertised ratio at idle is 400/300:1 They did not mention any "special new math formula" for figuring gas/oil ratio. Mercury's advertised fuel saving for Optimax engines vary from 80% at idle, around 30-40% in the midrange, and only about 10% at WOT. After a year of usage on my '98 200, I would agree that these figures on fuel consumption are fairly accurate. Please explain to us why, at WOT, we see double the oil consumption and only a 10% increase in fuel economy. So that you have the facts, my motor has used 226 gals of fuel and 8 gals of oil to date. That averages out to 28:1. In calender year 1997, my Johson 225 used 494 gals of gas to 9.5 gals of oil for an average ratio of 52:1. I did not have an hourmeter on the Johnson but I feel that it was used almost twice as much during that period which accounts for the majority of the difference in fuel usage.
   Optimax & oil from Thinwater (  6/19/1999 7:25:00 PM
 John you are WRONG, WRONG, WRONG !!! I don't care how you calculate YOUR oil usage. This is how I do mine. I have a spot I like to fish on Champlain that is 59.6 miles north of the ramp alot of tournaments go out of. With my old Johnson I could just make it there and back @ WOT on not quite a tank of gas ( 52 gals. ) and less than 1 gal of oil. Now the same trip uses 35 gals of gas and 1 1/2 + gals of oil. I have checked time & time again, I average 25:1 that is alot worse than the 60:1 that I was promised.
   More oil than Ficht? from Jack (  6/19/1999 11:33:00 PM
 Serious question..NO BASH EITHER WAY!!! Are the Mercury folks cheating on EPA tests and running more oil through their engines to prevent the powerhead failures the OMC group has experienced? Again, NO BASH, but, you have to admit, it adds up!! I seriously doubt we would ever get a straight answer, so forget I asked. I didn't post this to start any controversy. If Merc is getting away with something that allows their customers to enjoy their boats without the hassles, more power to them! I'm sure I'll get kicked around for this one, even with all the disclaimers...so kick away. I won't take it seriously, anyway.
   Disagree with calculations from Scott (  6/20/1999 10:54:00 AM
 Maybe in your case John, but the people I know of complaining of the oil use are comparing to their previous 225 efi's running the same distances in tournaments. Any way you stack it, for the distance traveled, they are burning a lot more oil than previously. I bet, if the real scoop ever got out, there would be an epa ramification for this also.
   Oils Cheap! from Jigging Jim (  6/20/1999 5:39:00 PM
 Why worry about a few bucks on oil when you get dependability
   oil is cheap ??? from Thinwater (  6/20/1999 6:32:00 PM
 I guess Jigging Jim has a point, the engine is smokeless and seems to be holding together well. My point is we all were sold a bill of goods as to how cheap these motors are to operate. Here is another example. Topped of the gas tank Thurs. checked oil about 1/2" in the tank, added 2 gals. Fished Fri. & Sat. topped off the gas tank 31.4 gals. Fished today ( Sun. ) as I was coming in to load on trailer the oil alarm went off, oil tank is BONE DRY. On way home topped off the gas 26.4 gals. That is 57.8 gals of gas to MORE than 2 gallons of oil. At $16.50 per gallon NO WAY is that CHEAP !!!!!!!
   Opti Oil Consumption from binkwood (  6/20/1999 8:22:00 PM
 I inquired about the oil consumption of my Opti and was told by my mechanic; Although Mercury's claims of oil savings are quite inflated, you have to look at how much oil you use per mile, not the ratio of gas to oil used. He assumes the Opti's are using more oil than they were originally designed to, to avoid power head failures.

To answer your original question Rene, I have a 225 Opti with probably 70 hours on it. It has run flawlessly. It idles without loading up, and the fuel economy is very good comparatively. From what I have read, these engines are built with big blocks (they are heavy engines), and "tuned down" (they don't require a lot of rpm's to develope their horsepower rating) to aleiviate power head failures. I don't think you take any extra risk purchasing a 225 over a 200.

   Optimax Oil Usage from John (  6/22/1999 3:16:00 PM
 My Opti is a '98 150 (2.5 litre) and maybe that's the difference in what I'm experiencing as compared to some of the guys with 3.0 litres. Merc sure must have put some real magic in some of those 3.0 litre motors to have them burning so much more oil than an EFI yet, not smoke.



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