In my earlier post, I’ve revealed how the pitch propellers affect your boat’s performance.. here are few more things to keep in mind while choosing propeller for your outboards.
Aluminum propellers aren’t expensive, they work well, and are relatively easy to repair, but aluminum isn’t particularly durable, making aluminum props susceptible to wear and damage.
Stainless steel propellers cost more up front; however, because stainless steel is stronger than aluminum, a stainless propeller’s blades are usually thinner and can be made in a wider variety of styles and shapes than an aluminum prop, thus the potential for better performance and increased service life.
Remember, it’s stain-less steel, not stain-proof—a stainless propeller can still rust, so you need to keep it clean, just like the rest of your boat.
Three Blades vs. Four Blades
In broad terms, three blade propellers offer good overall performance; however a three blade prop may lose its grip in turns and may not be the best handling propeller on high-horsepower rigs.
Four blade propellers can get a boat on plane faster, they’re less likely to lose traction in turns, and help many boats handle better, although a four blade propeller is often a bit slower (1-2 MPH) at top speed than a three blade prop.
Yamaha Marine offers propellers to suit nearly any application, and their website, yamaha-motor.com, is a great place to start searching for the perfect prop. Here, you can check out Yamaha’s propeller charts, as well as over a thousand performance bulletins that document real-world results on almost any boat imaginable.
We also suggest looking into Mariners Warehouse. (marinerswarehouse.com, 305 335 5843), the premier supplier of top quality, high performance yacht engines products.
When contacting Yamaha or Mariners warehouse, make sure to have all the information about your current setup (boat length, style, engine, propeller, full-throttle RPM, and other performance data) available to discuss with the prop pros – it’ll help them help you.
Try as many different propellers as possible before shelling out hard-earned dollars on a new prop. Your local dealer might let you borrow a propeller or two if you ask nicely – there is no substitute for on-water testing.