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The Proper Prop

Prop Propeller Proppeller Propp Screw Aluminum Stainless Steel SS

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#1 LambChop

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Posted 19 August 2012 - 10:59 PM

So, yes, I get it... the proper propeller question is probably the most asked question on any boat forum. But... I'm still going to ask it. What good is a boat forum without a virtual cornucopia of screw threads? Everyone loves to ad their 2¢ (I've got a mac, so making the "cents" sign is as easy as pressing option + 2) to the prop threads.


First, my current boat specs:
  • Year: 1998 (I was 15 years old when this boat was sold)
  • Make: Chaparral (what else would it be on this forum?)
  • Model: 2130 SS (Limited Edition - I think that got you some faux wood trim, a compass, and a depth sounder... how does that make it "limited"?)
  • Length: 20' 6"
  • Beam: 8' 4"
  • Engine: GM 305 V8 w/ Throttle Body EFI - 240 HP (Yes, I would love for it have the 350 V8... no idea why the previous owner skimped on the motor...)
  • Stern Drive: Mercruiser Alpha One, 1.47 Drive Ratio
  • OEM Weight: ~ 3150 lbs
  • Current Prop: Mercury 21 Pitch Aluminum 3 Blade (don't know the diameter)
And the current Performance:
  • Full Laden Specs - 6 adults: ~ 1020 lbs
  • Gear: 100 lbs
  • Full Laden WOT Engine RPM: 4,800
  • Full Laden WOT GPS Speed @ 4,800 RPM: 45 mph
  • Minimum Laden Specs - 2 adults: 350 lbs
  • Gear: 70 lbs
  • Minimum Laden WOT Engine RPM: 4,900
  • Minumum Laden WOT GPS Speed @ 4,900 RPM: 49 mph
Here's the condition - I mostly travel with 4-6 passengers in the boat and I prefer to cruise on plane, but at the lowest speed I can maintain on plane while still maintaining an efficient cruise speed. Furthermore, wakeboarding, tubing, and skiing are inevitable on a lake outing; being able to maintain a good holeshot/plane-out time with 6 people in the boat is a necessity. Yes, a bigger motor would be wonderful, however, my current motor runs like a top, so it is staying as is.

My boat did come with a stainless steel 21 pitch Mercury Vengeance propeller that was a bit chewed up. I had it reconditioned and installed on the boat yesterday, but I haven't had it out yet. I have no idea what to expect in performance compared to the current prop.

I've been considering the Mercury High Five as it comes highly recommended for this type of boat and intended use (and I have a wonderful source to get it quite a bit a cheaper than current market price). I'm also wondering about the Revolution Four. Are there any other props to consider from the other propeller manufacturers?

Everyone seems to recommend a pitch, but no one ever comments on radius/diameter. I would imagine that diameter has a substantial effect - is it something to consider in addition to pitch?

'98 Chaparral 2130 SS "Limited Edition"
Mercruiser 5.0 EFI w/ Alpha Gen II 1.47 Drive

IMG_0359.jpg


#2 Shepherd

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 12:58 PM

The 21" Enertia will probably knock the RPM down to 4500-4600 or so when fully laden.

Within a given prop series, (say Enertia) diameter typically goes down the higher one goes up in pitch.

Based on what you're giving us, I'd say a 21" or 19" High Five would be my first choice. The Revolution 4 is a very aggressive props series, so a 19" IMO for it. If you want to plane slower, even after running a High Five, install Lenco or Bennett trim tabs, or Smart Tabs with 60 lb. actuators.

The RPM range for your 5.0L EFI is 4400-4800 at WOT. Your 2135 SS is using the same hull as later 210 SS/SSi boats.
The most important things in life aren't things.
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#3 John Schneider

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Posted 20 August 2012 - 01:55 PM

Had a couple of suggestions, but it looks like Shepherd nailed it!
1994 2130 SST/Sport
7.4L Mercruiser Bravo 1

Marietta, GA


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#4 tomnjo

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 03:14 PM

Take a look at the Turbo 2+2. It's a four blade SS prop. The blades have kind of a dog eared shape and it runs real effieciently at cruising speeds while still allowing lower planing speeds for water sports. They come in even number pitches, 18, 20, 22, etc. I ran a 20 pitch on a 3100 lb. (dry) 20 ft. boat with a 220 HP 5.0 and I ran 47 GPS. Was the best prop I ever ran on that boat. Too bad it was sold with the boat. If you search online make sure you put a space between turbo and prop or you will get a bunch of airplane engine links. LOL
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    Tom and Jo,  2003 210 SS 5.0 MPI Alpha,  Summer Salts
  • 1405829860_zps009e5bcd.jpg[/URL]

     

 

 
 

 


#5 LambChop

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 02:19 PM

Had a couple of suggestions, but it looks like Shepherd nailed it!


He sure did...

Performance with the Merc Enertia 21P prop was... #%^$&%$ near identical. Perhaps it pulled out of the water a bit nicer (more noticeable when the boat was heavily loaded), but it certainly wasn't a night and day difference. The only discernible difference was that my WOT RPMs dropped about 200-300 RPM.

And then I struck a stump with it.

After evaluating my needs, I've decide I want a good balance between top speed, cruising, and watersports. From what I've read, a stainless steel four blade prop is probably the best overall choice. I haven't eliminated the High Five, but it's cost and benefits may not align perfectly with what I want.

Any opinions on how the following props compare with each other?

Mercury Revolution 4
Turbo 2+2 TH
MIchigan Wheel Apollo XHS 4 Blade
Solas HR Titan 4

'98 Chaparral 2130 SS "Limited Edition"
Mercruiser 5.0 EFI w/ Alpha Gen II 1.47 Drive

IMG_0359.jpg


#6 tomnjo

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 04:16 PM

I've run the Turbo with good results, reasonably priced. The only thing bad about it is that it has a pressed in hub. If you're in an area where you may hit stumps, it may not be the best choice. Another four blade to consider is the Merc Vensura prop. It uses the Merc Flo Torq II hub system. I think they have a little more "give" if you hit something. When they first produced these they called them Offshore and then changed the name. I think they were originally designed for larger outboards but people (including myself) found that they work well on Alpha drives whereas the Rev 4 prop is a little to much for Alphas. In fact I still have a 21 pitch Offshore that I have yet to try on my Chap because I also had a 19 but sold it with the only hub I had. I still had these after I sold my old boat because I went with the 20 pitch Turbo on it, due to the fact that the 19 OS was too small and the 21 OS was too large. That 19 really ripped me out of the hole though.
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    Tom and Jo,  2003 210 SS 5.0 MPI Alpha,  Summer Salts
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#7 cyclops2

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 05:54 PM

My 2002 186 SSI SS 305 carb 220 hp is 3200 pounds dry 3500 pounds loaded with me. it does 4850 rpms with the rev limiter cutting in & out @ 52 GPS clean bottom in the spring. It is a stock Aluminum prop. I had a out of the hole angle of maybe 40 degrees for 3 to 4 seconds.

I installed a Wander Fin on the drive plate. Bingo ! 1 second climb out almost level............Get something to raise the stern ....FIRST.

Then your prop will give you whiplash on a WOT takeoff. My boat is about 18.5' x 8.5' I now take off seated & always wear the safety cord.......
Really screwed up dangerously on the first WOT takeoff. The boat tossed me all the way back to the bench seat. It was doing about 45 when I got back to the throttle lever.

#8 LambChop

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 06:09 PM

I installed a Wander Fin on the drive plate. Bingo ! 1 second climb out almost level............Get something to raise the stern ....FIRST.


I am no hydrodynamic engineer, but I can pretty much guarantee a WanderFin did not cause your boat to magically accelerate quicker and plane faster to the degree that it threw you to the back of the boat unexpectedly.

'98 Chaparral 2130 SS "Limited Edition"
Mercruiser 5.0 EFI w/ Alpha Gen II 1.47 Drive

IMG_0359.jpg


#9 cyclops2

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 06:56 PM

Go to www.wanderfin.com Read some of the postings by emperical hydrodynamic designers.

#10 tomnjo

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:01 PM

Cyclops, do you have a pic of that thing installed on your outdrive? Trying to get a clear picture in my head of how this thing looks installed. :scratchchin:
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    Tom and Jo,  2003 210 SS 5.0 MPI Alpha,  Summer Salts
  • 1405829860_zps009e5bcd.jpg[/URL]

     

 

 
 

 


#11 cyclops2

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 07:12 AM

Go to the web site. www.wanderfin.com

It is bolted to the anti cavitation plate. When & if the vertical fins break off. They are BEHIND the spining prop blast in foward. So they are thrown clear & your boat simply handles like it did without the fin.

The reason my boat improved so much. It has a 305 carbed 220 hp in it. It is wide at 8.5' & very short at 18.5' The prop blast simply concentrated into more foward thrust. I do not show off with WOT takeoffs any more . I am 75. :)

#12 Shepherd

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 10:38 AM

I've run the Turbo with good results, reasonably priced. The only thing bad about it is that it has a pressed in hub. If you're in an area where you may hit stumps, it may not be the best choice. Another four blade to consider is the Merc Vensura prop. It uses the Merc Flo Torq II hub system. I think they have a little more "give" if you hit something. When they first produced these they called them Offshore and then changed the name. I think they were originally designed for larger outboards but people (including myself) found that they work well on Alpha drives whereas the Rev 4 prop is a little to much for Alphas. In fact I still have a 21 pitch Offshore that I have yet to try on my Chap because I also had a 19 but sold it with the only hub I had. I still had these after I sold my old boat because I went with the 20 pitch Turbo on it, due to the fact that the 19 OS was too small and the 21 OS was too large. That 19 really ripped me out of the hole though.


Of note, the Mercury Offshore series was renamed the Revolution 4. Mercury Vensura series is really the ss version of the Alpha4 aluminum 4 blade props.
The most important things in life aren't things.
Anthony J. D'Angelo

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#13 tomnjo

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 08:11 PM

That may be correct about the Vensura but when I bought my Offshore, I had to chose between it and the Rev 4. That's when I was told that the Offshore was better for Alphas. I think the Rev 4 had a larger blade area.

http://www.mertenmar...ore)/Categories
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    Tom and Jo,  2003 210 SS 5.0 MPI Alpha,  Summer Salts
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#14 LambChop

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 10:15 PM

cyclops2 - please stop posting about the WanderFin product in this thread. I don't have direction wander and I've read enough about the WanderFin to know that it won't yield the results you claim. If I need to cure bow rise and planing time, I'll look into Smart Tabs or Bennet Trim Tabs.

I've read a lot of praise on the Solas HR Titan 4 propeller on iBoats - it seems a lot of people think that's the way to go.

I've also read a bit about propeller ventilation - in essence, controlled slip/cavitation to allow the engine to spin a few more revs and get into the fatter part of the torque curve. Are there any 3 blade props that feature ventilation that might serve my needs?

'98 Chaparral 2130 SS "Limited Edition"
Mercruiser 5.0 EFI w/ Alpha Gen II 1.47 Drive

IMG_0359.jpg


#15 tomnjo

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 10:45 PM

I've got one comment about vented props. It works. The Merc props have different size plastic plugs to insert in the vent holes. One time just for fun, I tried it without the plugs in with the holes wide open. The prop was venting soo much that the boat wouldn't move. Luckily it was a week day and I was the only one at the ramp. Paddled back, put the plugs in, all was good. Neat experiment. Never tried a Solas prop. As far as three blades go I know a couple of people who really like the Ballistic props. Not sure if they're vented, though. You can go nuts with prop experimentation. Kind of fun but expensive unless you can borrow one. At one time I owned 5 SS props and an aluminum. Now I'm down to 2 SS and an aluminum.
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    Tom and Jo,  2003 210 SS 5.0 MPI Alpha,  Summer Salts
  • 1405829860_zps009e5bcd.jpg[/URL]

     

 

 
 

 


#16 cyclops2

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 06:04 AM

I find that a local prop shop is the best place to find out what props are best for most boats. Plus they will give me a couple of loaners to try out.

The only cost has been doing bussiness with them over many years.

Do not know why the solid underline appeared in the post...........reported it.

#17 Richard W

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 12:36 PM

Do not know why the solid underline appeared in the post...........reported it.


Just highlight the underlined text and click off the "underline" button above the edit window ... :)

Best ... Richard
 

Have boat called "anytime", 2007 Chaparral 270 Signature, with
VP 8.1Gi-H 375hp and 1.78 DPS-A with F4 duoprop, cruising

Saint Lawrence River and Lake Ontario in USA and Canada






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