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Need help on picking a new SS prop. Picking out a pitch.

I notice for several trips i was losing speed on my boat. Last Thursday I could just very plane the boat out, To make the story short I checked out my Aluminum Prop and it was bent more than it was before. Time for a new prop. Will get a SS prop this time around because I heard they are so much better for saltwater than a aluminum one and will add a couple miles per hour to my speed.

Here is where you the experts on this forum come in for much needed help. I thought I would punch in a web site and the number on the prop would show up. What showed up were several different ones with different pitches, three blades, four blades. Help, what one do I need on my boat?

First I would love to have a little more speed to get on plane faster, more speed to beat that storm you though you had more time, and just because I want to go a little faster for more fishing time.

The motor is a 2000 25 hp Mercury Big foot 4 stroke. Boat 13 foot Boston Whaler.

So if you can help me pick out the best prop for me let me know. I need some web sites where the best deal on one are. It doesn,t look to hard to put a new on on, so I will give it a try.

Thanks for the help.


  • KeatonBchFisherKeatonBchFisher Posts: 297 Officer

    Talk to Ken and tell him what you have and what you want to do. He carries a pretty good selection.

    No big deal to swap them. I always replace the pin.
    Keaton Beach Rental https://www.vrbo.com/780025

    Yankeetown Rental https://www.vrbo.com/619425
  • butchbalbutchbal Posts: 504 Officer
    You will want a 13" or 14" pitch with the proper diameter for your lower unit clearance. I ran a 13 pitch ss prop on my J16 with a 2 stroke merc 25. The boat would plane quickly and run 28 mph with just me on board. I wouldn't want to run any faster than that in a flat bottom boat. I didn't have a tach but the motor was shy of WOT at 28 mph on smooth water. I did run a 14" prop for a while that gave me a little more top end speed but noticeably slowed the time to plane.

    SS props are stiffer than aluminum so on larger boats/motors you will see an increase in efficiency, but not so much on small skiffs. The other thing to consider is that ss props are harder to bend/break than aluminum when you hit something. That also means that your gear box will also be shocked more on impact so it's a tradeoff. Don't hit things...:wink

    Good luck.
  • Doc StressorDoc Stressor Homosassa, FLPosts: 2,756 Captain
    It's tough to prop a small outboard correctly unless you have a tachometer. You can pick up a simple inductive tachometer for under $25 and I recommend that you get one because the Mercury Bigfoot is not a typical 25 hp outboard. The only problem is that most of these won't work with a 3 cylinder engine.

    The stock prop on the older 25 hp Bigfoot was 10.375" x 11.0". But they can turn props as big as 11.5 " in diameter. It's designed for pushing a heavy load at relatively low rpm. You see these mostly on sailboats and pontoon boats. The Bigfoot uses a higher hear ratio than the standard 25 hp engine that lets it more easily turn a bigger diameter, lower pitch prop. They also typically come with 20" shafts, which may be too long for a 13' Whaler.

    While it isn't the best engine for you boat, since you already own it, you might as well do the best as you can to fit the right prop. I'd start out with a 13" standard diameter prop and see if you can turn 6000 rpm at WOT. Figure on a 400 rpm increase or decrease in WOT rpm as you decrease or increase the pitch by 2".

    Here are some 13" props on iboats.com:


    As Butch said, don't expect much difference in performance between a SS and aluminum prop on a small engine. And given where you fish (Wacca), I'm not sure if a SS prop is the way to go. Aluminum props are cheaper to replace and you are much less likely to bend your propeller shaft when you hit a rock. SS props make sense when you are more likely to hit a sandbar than a rock or if you're running offshore and might hit a crab trap.
  • Moon ShadowMoon Shadow Posts: 1,073 Officer
    Thanks for the advice. I am going to order a aluminum prop after reading your opinions and the internet. I don't go 2 or 3 trips to Waccasassa without finding a rock. Normally I hit them at a low speed so there is very little damage. I will give a 13 inch prop a try.

    Thanks again everybody.
  • CK1CK1 Posts: 36 Deckhand
    Honestly, I would talk to Ken at Prop gods. They guy is a guru and I have never heard anything but good things about him.
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