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ContinuousWave: Whaler Performance
Stainless prop vs steel
|Author||Topic: Stainless prop vs steel|
posted 04-05-2004 10:26 PM ET (US)
Can anyone explain why I should install a stainless prop on my montauk vs steel? Is there any over whelming performance difference?
posted 04-05-2004 10:37 PM ET (US)
Did you mean to say a stainless steel prop versus an "aluminum" prop? To my knowledge, all steel props are stainless.
If you meant to say stainless steel prop versus an aluminum prop, this question has come up before. Although I am no expert on props, there are at least two clear benefits of stainless steel props:
1. They give you better performance (I think because of less flex)
2. If you hit bottom with an aluminum prop, you stand to damage the prop, throwing it out of balance which could jeopardize your ability to return home and jeopardize damage to your lower unit. Both are bad, obviously.
posted 04-05-2004 10:47 PM ET (US)
Richard - I agree with all except your statement about damage to your lower unit with the stainless prop. The fact is that damage to your lower unit is much more likely with stainless since the prop has no "give" to it and all the impact shock is transferred to the gearcase. The aluminum prop will bend (and can be straightened later), but will absorb the impact and often save the lower unit. A much less painful outcome.
posted 04-05-2004 11:12 PM ET (US)
I agree and should have mentioned that.
posted 04-05-2004 11:37 PM ET (US)
I think I may fit in here because I am no prop expert either. However I would think that the possibility of damage to the lower unit due to hitting bottom or debris would be no greater with the stainless prop vs. the aluminum prop because of the rubber bushing that is pressed into the hub. It was my understanding that the rubber bushing is designed to break free before damaging the shaft or lower unit. Is this theory incorrect?
posted 04-06-2004 08:22 AM ET (US)
Peetman, that theory is correct! Clark.. SCN
posted 04-06-2004 08:47 AM ET (US)
Dunno about theory, but another member here grounded his twin Revenge on some rocks. He feels that having s/s props were a disadvantage in this incident. Pranged the props _and_ the shafts, and if he had aluminum wheels, he probably would have just lost the wheels.
posted 04-06-2004 08:57 AM ET (US)
The hub will reduce rotational force trasmitted to prop and drive shafts when a moving boat and prop hits an obstruction. In reality there may be forces in several directions that will cause damage to the lower unit intenal mechanicals. A rubber hub does very little to reduce the forward energy of the boat moving forward/backward/down that strikes a fixed object. An aluminum prop will bend to disperse this energy with much less resistance than SS. Bent or broken prop shafts and gears are much more likely with a SS prop than Aluminum.
Even so, I only run SS props since (to me)the performance benefits outweigh the additional risks of lower unit damage. You can get plastic/composite props with replacable blades if you really want to be safe, but the performance of these props is worse than aluminum.
posted 04-06-2004 09:41 AM ET (US)
One more variable on prop material selection to consider, geography. Where do you plan on doing your boating? If you are going to do alot of boating where rock or stiff bottoms are going to be a concern well definately consider the benifits of aluminum (those blades will break SS wont, Al props are much cheaper than SS). On the other hand if you boat in an area which has soft bottoms like I do (Low Country of South Carolina) the durability of SS is unmatched. Spending the $$$ for a SS prop on my Yamaha was a no brainer (actually an Al prop was never even discussed for this engine). A SS prop in the low country will just chrun through the soft mud and sand without any damage where the Al prop loses little bits and peices every time it touches bottom.
And if you think you are never going to hit bottom, hahahahahahahaha, think again.
If the $$$$ the SS props cost is an issue, look around in the aftermarket, I have seen countless threads on this forum about aftermarket props. Also you don't have to have the pretty poplished SS prop to get the durability, I have a painted SS Yamaha prop on mine that works just fine (it was about $100 less than the polished version).
posted 04-06-2004 10:04 PM ET (US)
Same friend who had the grounding, also painted his s/s props flat black. Reduced the theft risk....
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