I know I know it's not a yamaha. Nor is the boat glamorous.
My brother has a yard decoration that he calls a boat. Mainly the boat is junk, but it floats without sinking too quick, and it serves his purpose (helps grow weeds in his yard, with the occasional weakfish and crabbing jaunt in the bay).
My brother put a new force 75 on the boat around 95, and had kids in 97 and 98, and slowly stopped using the boat as they got older and he became super-duper soccer dad (annoying imo. Boats & Fish > soccer & Boy Scouts). He winterized the boat properly in 2003 and put the boat away and hasn't used it since.
The motor that's on there is one of the last force motors (built after merc took them over). The motor is in nearly pristine condition (i'd be violently surprised if it had more than 20 hours on it), and was properly maintained. it's a 3 cyl electric start carb motor, with power trim etc.
The problem is when we tried to get his lawn ornament running today, the starter seemed to be giving us some issues.
1) the starter pinion when the key is turned spins, but does not spin up and engage the flywheel.
2) Thinking that the solenoid was the issue, we bypassed the solenoid, and only if we repeatedly tapped the jump to the battery did we get the pinion to engage the flywheel. When it did engage the flywheel, it barely had enough torque to turn the flywheel.
3) Thinking that the motor was seized, we took out the pristine spark plugs and I did a bore inspection, then cranked it to see if the cylinders were seized - they weren't.
4) We removed the starter from the motor and tested it on the bench, and it seemed to work OK.
Would this be a starter, solenoid, or both?