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Author Topic:   Dauntless 16 performance
skred posted 06-01-2004 08:00 AM ET (US)   Profile for skred   Send Email to skred  
Finally got fed up with rain every weekend here in Milwaukee, so yesterday - advisories notwithstanding - I decided to wring out the D16, "Corky". Like our maiden voyage, the thunderstorms rolled through, and my daughter & I ignored the steady drizzle that followed, and launched. With a full 45 gallons of fuel and about 70 lbs of gear and my 140-lbs daughter, I cracked the throttle as soon as I cleared the breakwater. Flat out with the engine trimmed up but not maximum, in a 2-3 foot sea, GPS read 37 mph. I checked the AV plate, and it's so low I couldn't tell if it was in or out of the water. The Honda 90 is on the lowest mounting hole. My boat has the "pocket" in the hull at the stern. I want to raise the motor at least 2 holes to bring the AV plate parallel or a little above the hull line. Right now, from stop to plane takes about 3-4 seconds max, but the bow goes quite high at first (motor trimmed full down) I'm pretty happy with the overall performance - expecially out in the 3-4 footers a couple miles offshore. The boat rides beautifully once you find the right speed to cut the waves. Should I expect more speed or hole shot than I'm getting?
RobTX posted 06-01-2004 09:45 AM ET (US)     Profile for RobTX  Send Email to RobTX     
Sounds like your Honda 90HP is doing the same as my Mercury 90HP 2 stroke. I'm getting 37mph per GPS top speed. My boat is a 2002 with the notch at the transom and has a Whale Tail fin. The fin attached to the anticav plate really helped it jump on plane faster. I usually cruise about 24mph offshore in 1-2 footers. The Dauntless 160 is a heavy boat for its size so I wouldn't expect it to be much faster with a 90HP.
fishgutz posted 06-01-2004 10:17 AM ET (US)     Profile for fishgutz  Send Email to fishgutz     
Hey Skred, If you see a 14 Dauntless (green lettering) with a 75 merc on the pond give me a shout. My name's MIKE. I usually get a season pass for the county launches. Cruise the river at night sometimes. It's fun although they won't be having Rainbow Summer at the PAC anymore on Tuesdays. Haven't had the boat out this year yet. Weather has been awful not to mention I hurt my shoulder at work last month and am laid up for a while. Bummer. Maybe I'll get out today, 6/1.

My 14 handles the Lake Michigan chop like a dream. 25MPH and its almost like I'm on a pool table. Last Oct. ran with the Coast Guard on a rough day with my 11 year old son. They were in a bigger Whaler. I not only kept up but we didn't even get bounced around too bad.

My understanding is the lake level is up at least 11 inches and after the weekend maybe its 12 now.

What year is your 16. Does it have the center console? or dual/walkthru? Mines a center console. Basicly the same as the newer D16 only with out the room for the 2 rear jump seats.

Nuff said, Seeya on the water.

davej14 posted 06-01-2004 11:21 AM ET (US)     Profile for davej14  Send Email to davej14     

I also have a Dauntless 14 and 75 merc 2-stroke. I have been playing around with motor height etc to find the optimum setup. I started with the motor in the lowest position. It was factory rigged that way and I confirmed with Boston Whaler that that this is their recommended position. Frankly, I think the performance was pretty good. 1-2 secs to plane and 42mph at WOT with just me and gear in the boat. I have a 21 pitch prop and it turns about 5100 RPM at WOT which also seems about right. Two weeks ago I raised the motor to the second highest possible position and really didn't see much diference in performance but i now have quote a bit of spray kicking up vertically at the transom ahead of the motor. I suspect it is from the cavitation plate. I think the boat rides pretty rough in chop. What is your set up?? It would help me down the curve to know how you have optimized performance.

Regarding the Dauntless 16 with 90 fourstroke, it sounds like the performance you would expect. A friend of mine has a 16 foot ventura with the same hull as the Dauntless and has the same performance. He is considering the addition of a fin to help with the bow rise while comming to plane.


Marlin posted 06-01-2004 11:23 AM ET (US)     Profile for Marlin  Send Email to Marlin     
Hi Skred,

Your top speed sounds pretty close, you might get 1-2 MPH more by raising the motor a little. I recall most other 16 Dauntless owners reporting about 39 MPH with 90 HP motors.

I suggest you consider adding a hydrofoil. I added one this year, and it significantly reduced bow-rise. More importantly, I have much better bow-down trim authority for choppy water (needed it last weekend, see the Tea Party rendezvous thread) and it reduced my minimum planing speed from 20 MPH at 3200 RPM to 15.5 MPH at 2900 RPM. Overall I see a 0.5 MPH reduction in speed at various RPMs with a 1.0 MPH reduction at WOT. That may also be influenced by the fact that this year's test was a little choppier, and I wasn't trimming up quite so aggressively. In any event, the difference in speed isn't enough for me to worry about.

As RobTX says, most comfortable cruise speed seems to be at about 25 MPH at 3600 RPM. In last week's very choppy run across the Chesapeake, we ran a total of 72 miles in 4 hours, and burned about 14 gallons, averaging 18 MPH, 3.5 GPH, 5 MPG. Not too shabby for poor conditions, but there were times when I was eyeing the accompanying Nantucket with envy.


Perry posted 06-01-2004 01:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for Perry  Send Email to Perry     
skred, what prop are you using and what are the rpm at WOT?

I have a 2002 Dauntless 160 without the notch and a Honda 90. It was installed all the way down when new but I raised it up 2 holes. I can get 39 mph at 6000 rpm with a Honda stainless 13.25 X 16 pitch prop. I lost about 1 mph whith the addition of my t-top so I think if you raise it up 2 holes you may be able to reach 40 mph with the right prop.

skred posted 06-01-2004 03:00 PM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
Fishgutz: I was out (as I mentioned) yesterday. Pretty choppy out there, but I still managed a plane at 4000 rpm. - faster than I want to cruise.. I noticed the boat would come off plane in a following sea, and I suspect the throttle control is slipping to a lower position if I don't keep my hand on it... My daughter or son & I plan a lot of Lake Mich outings this summer - mostly out of McKinley Marina, sometimes out of Bender Park. I'll be looking for your boat. We also cruise up the river, and stop for lunch and a few drinks at (Milwaukee Ale House?) the bar/restaurant near the 3rd ward sign [they have a "boaters Welcome" sign. The lake is really coming back: two of the four launch piers at McKinley are awash already.
Rob: I'm glad I'm fairly close on performance, and may try the doel fin if moving the motor up doesn't help.
Have to go... More later....

YorkHarbor posted 06-01-2004 03:33 PM ET (US)     Profile for YorkHarbor  Send Email to YorkHarbor     
My 2001 16 Footer has the 115 HP Evinrude and has shown 42 MPH with no trim adjustments. I would expect 43-45 with the motor trimmed out correctly.
skred posted 06-01-2004 03:34 PM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
Fishgutz: mine is the Dauntless (Center Console) not the Ventura.
Perry: The prop is a puzzle: I think it's the standard diameter for the Honda 90 and 15 pitch (the hub has either been heavily painted or ground/polished, and the Merc (yes!) number is barely visible. Natually the last 2 digits are a 1 and an illegible number...
Marlin & Davej14: thanks for the observations. I want to try the 13.25 x 16 or a stainless equivalent. I really like this boat, and with a little tweaking, I think it'll be superb. Actually almost got airborne yesterday, and she landed as soft as cotton... The other thing: this boat is DRY! I tried pretty hard to generate some spray, and it took a concerted effort and maneuvers I wouldn't normally do - to even get a little spattering... Great ride.
davej14 posted 06-01-2004 08:09 PM ET (US)     Profile for davej14  Send Email to davej14     

If you decide to try a fin, check out the Turbolift design. It clamps to the anti cavitation plate without having to drill holes in it, which may affect your warranty. It isn't cheap at $165. but it is a heavy duty stainless construction. It is from Grand Island Marine in FL at (321) 452-8126. There are definitely mixed opinions on this site about the use of fins.


skred posted 06-02-2004 08:04 AM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
I've been watching the thread on TurboLift. Will wait for more trial results on that one. Forgot to mention that my WOT speed was at 5800-5900 rpm. Pretty much right up there. Just noticed my prop has some rough edges. Nothing serious, but I'll bet if it were cleaned up, it might improve things a little bit...
Checked the prop charts on the web at various locations, and got ratings for 15-16 foot boats and 16-18 ft boats, with 90 Mercs and Hondas. For general purpose and skiing applications, the props varied from 12-3/4 to 14 in. diameters, and from 15 to 21 pitch. Seems like a wide spread, but - then - boat type and weight probably play a big factor. I got most data from
fishgutz posted 06-02-2004 08:33 AM ET (US)     Profile for fishgutz  Send Email to fishgutz     
I run an SS Powertech prop Its my favorite.
They have a form you can fill out and they will answer you with an email (no spam) in a timely fashion. Very helpful. Nice exchange policy. Even if you don't get a prop from them, the info is helpful and free. (Its a real person that emails you back)
fno posted 06-02-2004 10:17 AM ET (US)     Profile for fno  Send Email to fno     
Can you use a Merc prop on a Honda? If so I've got a stainless 12-3/4" x 15 pitch prop to try.
Perry posted 06-02-2004 01:45 PM ET (US)     Profile for Perry  Send Email to Perry     
skred, I have the same boat (without notch ) and same motor as you. If I can reach 6000 rpm with a 13.25 X 16 pitch stainless doubled cupped Honda prop, the same prop should be good for you. You may have to raise your motor up 2 holes to reach optimum performance though. I use a 13.75 X 15 pitch Solas stainless prop for pulling skiers or when I have a heavy load. This prop will rev to around 6200 rpm.
Yiddil posted 06-02-2004 02:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for Yiddil  Send Email to Yiddil     
I wonder who's Nantucket that was you were eyeing MArlin hehe...flattered really:) Don't have a fin on that 115-2 but wondering what that would do...if its negligible difference I won't bother:) Actually I eyed your 16 DAunt. too! I mean you had 4 people on that puppy and she was on!@!!She ran pretty sweet out there in the Chesapeake Bay "Malstom" we hit. I think I was only at 3200-3400 rpms and planing nicely in that boiling soup:)But On the flat water of the chesapeake your Dault.16 and Das Boat seemed like there were purring down the river....Than again I only has one shipmate:)

Oh No been a whole day without her...Yikes (20 hrs maint. and forward dodger install) and the weather here is gorgeous sept for the accational afternoon thunderstorm....If I pick her up tomorrow,Im back in the water fast!!!!!

How does she compare to the 18 Daunt????same issues with the bow rising????

Marlin posted 06-02-2004 04:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for Marlin  Send Email to Marlin     
I forgot to mention earlier that my Dauntless has a 115 4-stroke, so it's not quite directly comparable. I've got a 13.25 x 16 Vengeance stainless prop, and I can generally just exceed 6000 when trimmed up. A little more pitch might not hurt, but I'd hate to give up any hole shot. I've been thinking about upgrading to a Rapture or similar high-performance prop, but at this point it's dialed in pretty good at one hole up, so I think I'll spend the money on something else.

I'd think that the 13.25 x 16 Vengeance or a similar prop would be a very good starting point for the 90 if your Honda has a gear ratio like the 115 Merc's 2.07:1. If it's a higher ratio like the 90 Merc's 2.33:1, then more pitch might be in order. On the BW website, the performance data for the 160 Dauntless shows them testing with 18-20 inch pitch props on the 90s.

If I understand one of you correctly that you're only getting on plane at 4000 RPM, then perhaps you're pitched way too low. You should plane somewhere between 3100 and 3400.

Yiddil, I haven't run your boat, but by watching I wouldn't say you have any problem getting planed off or keeping good trim. A foil would be a waste of time. Once you get up to 19 feet, trim tabs would probably be a better choice anyway if you felt you really needed it.


skred posted 06-03-2004 09:40 AM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
FNO, Apparently I can use a Merc prop on a Honda, since the barely legible number on the prop is a Merc number. My prop has the removable center spline. Apparently I can buy various props at a lower price, using the same hub/spline assembly. I would imagine I can also use a standard one-piece prop. I'd be interested in trying that SS prop if we could figure out logistics. I hope to have another shot at testing my rig this weekend, but I have a weding and a graduation party to attend, so I'll have to squeeze it in there somewhere.
Marlin, after I get on plane, I throttle back, and it seems like it will hold its plane to at least 4000, but I was bucking a 20 mph headwind and 3-footers, so the boat would gradually raise up off plane, and I don't think it was an accurate trial. Gonna hit an inland lake in the a.m. when I've got some smooth water, and get some accurate readings.
ocuyler posted 06-03-2004 10:36 AM ET (US)     Profile for ocuyler  Send Email to ocuyler     

I have exactly the same set up as yours. I love the 115 4s. The prop gives me just over 6000 when trimed up and lightly loaded. I put it one hole up and don't really notice a difference, but it hauls ass!

It's hole shot is OK when light, which it is most of the time. With the weight limit on board, it struggles to plane at all. The bow does lift high too. I tend to think it's the prop, but I'm trying a Doel-fin this weekend to see how that is.

Any suggestions on what prop might make our set-ups plane better under heavy load?

Marlin posted 06-03-2004 11:03 AM ET (US)     Profile for Marlin  Send Email to Marlin     

I've gotten advice in the past from Sal and others to go with a high-performance prop like a Laser II or a Rapture. I don't have any real expertise in props, and it's unclear to me why a prop with "bow lift" would be desirable given that the bow-high attitude is part of the problem in the first place.

I can understand how a vented performance prop might help hole shot, since it allows the motor to wind up higher into its power band at low speeds. Perhaps that would make a significant difference when taking off loaded, or with a skier. I don't recall anyone on the forum every trying one of these props on a 16 Dauntless, so as far as I know, there's no experience base out there.

I think you'll like the Doel-fin's impact on your performance. I put on a Sport SE 200, and Golden Daze now planes faster with less bow-rise, stays on plane at 15 MPH instead of 20, and handles chop better with no significant decrease in speed. As others have said, make sure the fin runs out of the water at fast planing speeds.

Here are some old threads that talk about these topics on the 16 Dauntless:


Jamber posted 06-03-2004 10:50 PM ET (US)     Profile for Jamber  Send Email to Jamber     
All this talk about raising the engine again. I still need to get around to doing it. These threads have inspired me to at least start thinking about it again.

Thanks for posting those links Bob.


fno posted 06-04-2004 08:34 AM ET (US)     Profile for fno  Send Email to fno     
I can ship the prop up to you via UPS. Try it out, it's got some small dings in it that do not affect performance yet. I was waiting for it to get another rock till I sold the boat. I live on a river that has lots of limestone in it. If you want to keep it, it's a $75 repair and we can talk $$$ then.
skred posted 06-04-2004 02:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for skred  Send Email to skred     
FNO, that sounds like a good idea. I have to verify a couple things yet. I really need to find out what prop I have, and I have to remove a lot of paint to see if the Merc number is still legible. If it's a viable prop, I would be glad to share the shipping, and I'd have it shipped to a friend's place nearby, since there's nobody at my place when UPS comes, and sometimes things have a habit of disappearing if left at the door in my area. I will let you know for sure by Monday latest.
ocuyler posted 06-07-2004 03:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for ocuyler  Send Email to ocuyler     

I installed a Stingray fin, as West was out of Doel-Fin's. You were correct. Our 16D, named "Bum's Rush", now gets up much better with far less bow rise, stays on plane all the way down to 12 MPH!

The motor is one hole up. The fin finally can be seen only at speeds over 35 MPH. I don't think it's actually in the water at, say, 25, but I just can't see it in the spray. It would make one consider raising the motor one more hole.

I'm glad I installed the fin (7.5 minutes) and highly recommend it to anyone with a 16' Dauntless.

Marlin posted 06-07-2004 04:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for Marlin  Send Email to Marlin     
Wow, 12 MPH?!! That must be run by a 75-pound 12-year-old with 2 gallons of gas and a cargo of helium balloons! Seriously, that's great, and should give you lots of flexibility in chop.

I suspect that your fin is running right at the surface like mine; I can also see mine only over about 30 MPH. If you want to raise your motor another hole, you should plan on buying a surfacing prop (Rapture or Stiletto). My performance with the Vengeance at 2 holes up was not acceptable. It would ventilate at the slightest excuse, like any tight turn, more than 6" of chop, or trimming up/out more than the slightest amount. I went back to one-hole-up.

Opinions on this forum regarding foils sure do vary, but it really seems like a winning proposition on the 160 Dauntless.

ocuyler posted 06-07-2004 04:47 PM ET (US)     Profile for ocuyler  Send Email to ocuyler     

I had to look at the GPS 2 or 3 times to verify the 12 MPH thing and thought the same thing you did. It was me and 40 gallons of expensive fuel. That's not a speed you would ever really use, but at least the bow is not pointing toward the sky as the boat comes of plane. It just kinda drops in.

You know what, I'm so satisfied with this set-up that I'm not going to change anything. It's time to use that baby and have fun....

Thanks for your help.

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