Propulsion setups are available from 35cc to 71cc engine sizes. 2 and 4 stroke engines vary based on size and availability. KAYAKBUDDYS is dedicated to custom engine and propulsion configurations for various applications on recreational kayaks and canoes, along with small watercraft . If you have a special requirement, inquire, we can help with the build if you are local or simply point you in the right direction for customization.

Kayaking is absolutely one of the most enjoyable water sports and recreational activities you can do by yourself or with a partner. Allowing people to move through the water to enjoy island hopping, fishing, or just having the ability to get home after a long day on the water is what it is all about.

By Matthew Pate, Owner of Kayakbuddys, LLC.

Final Add-On Rear Transom Mount Complete

Posted by Matthew Pate on July 27, 2017

7/25/17 Update

The first 4 stroke version is on the drawing board. The unit is beng CAD drawn to see the viability of tuning the exhaust note. 

35cc and 50cc 4 stroke stainless outboard mufflers are in the works. Keeping the OEM muffler for the baffling a tuned pipe is in order for the 35 and 50cc 4 Stroke engines. The 2 stroke is completed, it is now simply creating a jig for the possibility for production. If the cost outways the customers desire, then this will be a one of. 

The Little Motor that Could

Helping fellow kayakers in time of need. This is essential to have as a kicker on power boats, sailboats, inflatables and other watercraft that may need help.

Watch the Honda 35cc engine setup tow in 2 other kayaks with 3 passengers weighing in at over 700 lbs between all boats and equipment. One of the best safety devices you can own. Weather becomes unpredictable and fatigue sets in due to waves and tides. Watch video 4 for yourself.

Transom Mount Setup for Vibe Sea Ghost 130 is Done 7/25/17

I get this question all of the time about mounting. Personally I have crate mounted all of my builds, but I have been tinkering with a transom mount on a kayak without a technical transom. I will be testing the mount, but will be posting build pics in the next few days.

Crate Mount Build Up Close

Here are a few short videos on a basic, but tried and trued crate mount that works for almost every kayak with rear deck space.

I have been asked by quite a few people to explain the parts and accessories needed to build a simple mount that works. On the link below you will see a few videos that go over various aspects of the setup.


These 2 and 4 cycle engines have been run and tested on the engine leg for true performance and build quality. Please make sure you use quality engines oils for proper lubrication and engine longevity. Damage will occur if the engine requirements are not met when mixing oil and when filling the crankcase to the proper height. Do not overfill or add extra oil. All engines have stainless fittings for enhanced corrosion protection, unless they are factory Honda engines. Some engines like the Honda GXV50 are difficult to obtain due to inventory ordering minimums. Please inquire on the contact page your engine setup needs. Some models are custom made for customers and stock will fluctuate based on demand.

35CC - 4 Stroke Honda GX35T3

1.5 hp rating / Red Cover / Factory Fittings
(Comes with a factory 2 year warranty)

*In Stock

35CC - 4 Stroke (Non-Branded)

1.5 hp rating / Red Cover / Stainless Fittings

*Out of Stock 

50cc - 4 Stroke Honda GXV50

2.0 hp / Red Cover / Factory Fittings

(Unavailable due to ordering quantities and manufacture limited production runs)

50cc - 4 Stroke (Non-Branded)

2.0 hp / Red Cover / Stainless Fittings

*In Stock

71cc - 2 Stroke (Big Bore)

3.0 hp / Red Cover / Stainless Fittings
(Largest vertical engine avalable)

*In Stock

Small and Lightweight
Weighs in at 12lbs without engine.

There are not many options when it comes to adding real power to a paddled craft. With its slim design, the kayakbuddy allows for portability and ease of storage when not in use on the water.

Durable and Dependable
Made from non-corrosive metals

The small outboard leg is made up of aluminum and stainless components with a solid steel shaft and clutch drum making this unit strong, but yet easy to wash off and maintain when not in use.

2 and 4 Stroke Compatible
2 and 4 stroke engines give you versatility

Whether you use your own engine or purchase a new unit, the flexibility and straight forward attachment make this a perfect choice to mount of a paddled craft.

Easy Maintenance
Either mix oil or add oil, the choice is yours.

These small outboards give many hours of enjoyment and just a little routine maintenence and you are all set for the next adventure.

Engine rating will fluctuate depending on 2 or 4 stroke models and fuel.This give a general idea on the CC to HP range and the types of engines suitable for the use on a kayak. These are general estimates and change based on water condition, weight of the kayak and passenger(s) with equipment.

CC Chart with Outboard Engine Specifications

Important details and key points about the Kayak engine leg:

  • The kayak buddy is a small outboard leg that is built of aluminum and stainless steel hardware. The only steel used is the drive shaft, clutch housing and lower unit gears.
  • All of the fittings are stainless as well to extend the longevity of the leg. 
  • Weighs 22lbs with an engine and 12lbs by itself. No electric trolling motor system can match the torque and rough water capability from gas propulsion. Runs for 1 hr. on a tank of gas with the throttle fully open using the Honda GX35 engine.
  • Upper most mount position to the center axis of the propeller at its maximum height is 23.5 inches.

New models coming in are 2 inches longer to accomodate more vertical depth when needed for watercraft with high side gunnels.

  • You can adjust the trim and lockout of the engine. If an obstacle is struck underwater, the engine will pivot upward, so the mount and propeller incur minimum damage.
  • This is a light weight economical way to guide you through the water using small 2 and 4 stroke engines of your choice.
  • This is not a flipped around weed eater, but a geared actual drive system that uses a centrifugal clutch system and generates torque. Unlike electric which uses thrust, the gas counterpart works identical to a real boat engine and supplies torque to the prop through a splined shaft system gear to take advantage of the high rpms. This is why weed eaters fail and burn up. 
  • Uses a kill switch is a toggle (deadman style) switch type as pictured in the set of images. So if you need to shut the engine while fishing or diving this is the most efficient method.

2 Stroke Vs. 4 Stroke Engine Selection

This questions comes up more times than not. When deciding to build this affordable outboard you must first ask yourself the following questions: 

  • Do I want to mix oil or not?  
  • Is the smell of burnt oil  and exhaust noise an issue and will this prohibit you from enjoying your trip? 
  • Am I using an engine off of an a piece of machinery like a line trimmer and is it still useable?  
  • How much power and speed do I need during my outing. See rating chart above.

These are a few basic considerations when determining what version, you want to use. 2 Stroke tend to be a bit more oily and dirty from normal usage. They tend to need more repair, but the parts are plentiful. 4 Stroke is more efficient, creates a bit less power, but is headache free, literally. Cost wise, they are not to far off. 4 Stroke is still more expensive, but the valving system, ensures a smooth power band and easier starting. 

Can I Use My Own Engine?

The answer is absolutely yes, well maybe. Weed whacker motors 90% of the time do not fit, period. Using an old or under powered engine will give you some enjoyment until the engine quits or needs parts due to having worked to hard to create the torque needed to drive the craft. My motto is to spend money only once and do it right. Your better brands like Honda, Tohatsu, Kawasaki, and others always make a higher grade engine in their models. Other off brands are good and do exist, you just need to select a quality unit. We can help you with that.  You will need preferably a 30+cc engine or higher to give you the better torque range. Anything smaller will struggle depending on the weight of the boat, gear, and occupant. These vertical engines are 360 degree engines and can be used in any direction. A weed whacker setup will not work in its common format. Remember this is not a turned around weed whacker with a string trimmer or brush cutter head. 
I give credit to the Youtube crowd for being creative with weed whackers, but these units are not experimental.

Any Questions, feel free to give us a call.

305 926-2937 or Email us at