Pontoon Prop Advice Needed - Pensacola Fishing Forum

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Old 02-15-2017, 01:29 AM   #1
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Default Pontoon Prop Advice Needed

24' pontoon (2 logs)
2008 Suzuki DF115
Prop: aluminum Yamaha 13.25 x 17 (3 blades)

Performance: 22 mph turning 5800 RPM @ WOT
One person with 30 gals fuel and smooth seas with light wind.

At WOT, the cavitation plate was skimming on the surface of the water coming from under the transom. Transom stayed dry.

Problem: Terrible maneuverability at idle and low speed. Hard to dock in windy conditions. Cupping reduced RPMs and did not increase maneuverability at idle/low speed. Removed cupping.

This week I changed to a Suzuki SS prop 14" x 15 (also 3 blades)

Performance the same as above under similar load and sea/wind conditions. WOT is now 5700 RPM..

Maneuverability and handling at idle/low speed has drastically improved but check out what happens at higher RPMs.

I expected a small RPM drop but I did not expect this.

It appears I will have to raise the engine.

Would that resolve the problem?

@ 4500 RPM

Pontoon Prop Advice Needed-img_4017-1-jpg Pontoon Prop Advice Needed-img_4017-jpg

@ WOT (5700 RPM)

Pontoon Prop Advice Needed-img_4013-jpg Pontoon Prop Advice Needed-img_4015-jpg



Last edited by Orion45; 02-15-2017 at 01:31 AM.
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Old 02-15-2017, 07:04 AM   #2
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I would ask Ken at propgods.com. IMO, he's the go to guy for prop issues.
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Old 02-15-2017, 10:05 AM   #3
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You got a pic of it out the water? The aft of the vessel to show how low the engine sits
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Old 02-15-2017, 10:23 AM   #4
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4 blade prop for good handling. The more volume water you move the quicker boat stops and turns.
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Old 02-15-2017, 06:04 PM   #5
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Ditto the 4 bld. prop .. it will also greatly improve your low speed and reverse control of your boat . General rule of thumb is to drop 2' when going from 3 bld. to 4 --- so a 17" 3bld would go to a 15" 4bld.
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Old 02-15-2017, 07:13 PM   #6
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Thanks for the inputs.

Going to raise the engine one hole and then test. I can rig up a way to raise the engine using the boat lift. Easier than pulling boat out and then launching it again for water tests.

Need to wait for a day like yesterday.

Was in the water yesterday washing the boat and rinsing the engine. Not too bad since I stayed waist deep. Too lazy to put on waders.
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Old 02-15-2017, 07:17 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BananaTom View Post
You got a pic of it out the water? The aft of the vessel to show how low the engine sits
No I don't. With the aluminum prop, the engine set up is perfect.

The issue was idle/low speed maneuverability.
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Old 02-15-2017, 07:20 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lil' Scout View Post
I would ask Ken at propgods.com. IMO, he's the go to guy for prop issues.
I spoke with Ken about a four bladed prop two years ago but I did not follow thru.

He does know props.

Wish he were local.
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Old 02-16-2017, 02:56 AM   #9
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Idle and low speed handling are not a pontoons strong point. They have allot of sail area and get blown all over the place. I would just prop it for good cruising and deal with the sub par low speed handling.

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Old 02-16-2017, 05:10 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ghost95 View Post
Idle and low speed handling are not a pontoons strong point. They have allot of sail area and get blown all over the place. I would just prop it for good cruising and deal with the sub par low speed handling.

Sent from my SGH-M919 using Tapatalk
I understand your point.

However, the current aluminum prop requires higher RPMs to maneuver which in turn means more speed...not a plus when you're dealing with skinny water, high winds, and close spacing between docks and lifts.

Also, you need low speed maneuverability when driving the pontoon on a trailer...especially in crosswinds. Trying to retrieve the boat at higher speeds on a ramp like Woodlawn is not an ideal scenario.

This larger ss prop solved my low speed maneuverability problems.

Raising the engine should resolve the problem shown in photos.
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