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Old 28-03-2013, 09:53   #391
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Re: Autoprop ?

Don't buy the Autoprop. A blade fell off mine and there are many posts with other boaters having trouble. Brunton's customer support is nil, they don't answer inquiries or stand by their product. See my post from years ago.
I found no improvement in performance and a tendency to catch weeds.
I went to an Autostream which is adjustable under water and SS on a SS shaft. I think the more expensive Autoprop is also adjustable under water.
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Old 01-04-2013, 06:56   #392
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What else?

Thank you all so much for all this input. I learned so much about props. The Autoprop (or ecowind) sounds like a marvelous tool for any extended cruising. For me, I'm cruising locally and am hardly ever more than 4 hours from home. I might burn 50 gallons of fuel a year. I do not race. First and foremost, I'm looking for something for better backing of the boat into a slip. Tight maneuvering, etc. Second, I'd like something to power me through choppy seas and brutal headwinds. I am thinking more in the line of a feathering prop as an added bonus. Looking at other Web info, I do not get the impression that I will have more power and control with a feathering prop than my current fixed prop. I'm not adverse to getting a different fixed prop. This autoprop seems to have this performance, but added complexity, maintenance, expense doesn't seem worth it. The props that have been suggested Gori, Autoprofile, Kiwi, Autostream. I'd prefer something to set and forget, but I know that is not possible. Ideas? Should start a new thread dedicated to feathering props?

PS: This is my first time to read a thread this long. Are there any medals given out?
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Old 01-04-2013, 07:15   #393
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Re: What else?

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Originally Posted by Windseeker View Post
Thank you all so much for all this input. I learned so much about props. The Autoprop (or ecowind) sounds like a marvelous tool for any extended cruising. For me, I'm cruising locally and am hardly ever more than 4 hours from home. I might burn 50 gallons of fuel a year. I do not race. First and foremost, I'm looking for something for better backing of the boat into a slip. Tight maneuvering, etc. Second, I'd like something to power me through choppy seas and brutal headwinds. I am thinking more in the line of a feathering prop as an added bonus. Looking at other Web info, I do not get the impression that I will have more power and control with a feathering prop than my current fixed prop. I'm not adverse to getting a different fixed prop. This autoprop seems to have this performance, but added complexity, maintenance, expense doesn't seem worth it. The props that have been suggested Gori, Autoprofile, Kiwi, Autostream. I'd prefer something to set and forget, but I know that is not possible. Ideas? Should start a new thread dedicated to feathering props?

PS: This is my first time to read a thread this long. Are there any medals given out?
Different props have very different characteristics in terms of control -- that is, prop kick, and power and responsiveness in reverse.

Most variable geometry props are much better than fixed props in reverse, and most have less prop kick. The reason for the better (dramatically) reverse performance is that the blades of fixed props don't turn around and are working at an awkward angle in reverse. Most variable (folding and feathering) props do flip around so that the blades are working with their proper leading edges.

Variable props don't usually require much fiddling, once you get them dialed in. Some of them -- like the Autoprop -- are not adjustable at all -- they are continuously self-adjusting. Whatever prop you end up choosing, I think you will not regret getting rid of your fixed prop -- the difference in sailing performance, reverse, and maneuverability will be dramatic with just about any folding or feathering prop.

Where I sail -- the South Coast of England, where sailing is the national sport -- race boats always use folding props of various kinds. Cruising boats usually use feathering props, most often the Autoprop, which is the most popular feathering prop despite the high cost. With the big tides, strong currents, and strong weather over here, the self-pitching feature is highly prized. The next most common feathering prop is the MaxProp, which is standard fitment on Oysters and which is also much loved by those who have them. I have never seen a Kiwi or Gori over here.
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Old 01-04-2013, 19:20   #394
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Re: Autoprop ?

Not sure if it's been mentioned but to conserve the life of feathering props it's best to always shift from one direction to the other with the motor at an idle.

Be patient! Always let the motor slow to an idle and shift slowly. Pause in neutral for a moment. IAW's don't get yourself in emergency situations. Go slow in tight spots.

It's the quick shifts and vibration that wears out the mating parts. As well. keep them lubed.
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Old 01-04-2013, 19:40   #395
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Re: What else?

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Originally Posted by Windseeker View Post
Thank you all so much for all this input.
PS: This is my first time to read a thread this long. Are there any medals given out?
A fair comment. No medals I hope flowers do

Medal = reward. I suppose to be part of Cruisers Forum an be able to read a thread this long is a reward for all.
If you find something more suitable give as a link in this thread.
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Old 02-04-2013, 01:08   #396
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Re: Autoprop ?

Wait!! Fair is fair, I started this thread so I should get something too! LOL
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Old 02-04-2013, 05:30   #397
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Re: Autoprop ?

Lots of drama to boot!

Yachts66: I do not recall a post where you told us what you selected and why?
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Old 02-04-2013, 06:27   #398
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Re: Autoprop ?

The short version is NOT Autoprop. It seems fraught with problems.

I was very serious about the Variprop for some time, but it has not done well in the evaluation articles posted on my Variprop thread. Fortunately or unfortunately depending on how you look at it, I got distracted here in the jungle building boats, so the re-prop project was put on hold, but will be restarted shortly. I'm going to take a closer look at some of the folding props, they did well in testing. Not sure about long term durability though. There is an article linked to my Variprop thread that evaluated most of the available folding and feathering props. It's worth a read.
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Old 06-04-2013, 09:21   #399
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Re: Autoprop ?

Back when I was shopping for a truck, I asked a mechanic, who works on practically every make and model on the planet, which truck he likes. He said “Toyota” because it was the one that was hardly ever sees in the shop. I thought that was a pretty good endorsement so I bought a Toyota. I’ve been happy with that choice.

Excluding Autoprop, I was wondering if Fstbtmms or any other service person has a particular make/model of folding/feathering props that they see a lot when cleaning that they do not commonly get service calls on. Let’s assume the service call is not for lack of maintenance, but some other type of internal or external failure. Of course, a prop that can withstand more abuse from lack of maintenance is a plus. Ideas???
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Old 06-04-2013, 09:30   #400
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Re: Autoprop ?

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Originally Posted by Windseeker View Post
Excluding Autoprop, I was wondering if Fstbtms or any other service person has a particular make/model of folding/feathering props that they see a lot when cleaning that they do not commonly get service calls on. Let’s assume the service call is not for lack of maintenance, but some other type of internal or external failure. Of course, a prop that can withstand more abuse from lack of maintenance is a plus. Ideas???
Honestly, it is very rare for me to be called upon to service a feathering or folding prop because of any issue other than impact damage. All of these props tend to be well-designed and robust pieces of equipment. Given enough time and use, any folding or feathering prop will need to be refurbished, of course. But these props typically do not ever "fail" during the life of the unit. Autoprop is the only non-fixed prop that has had chronic issues, in my experience.
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Old 06-04-2013, 12:28   #401
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Re: Autoprop ?

I think I have posted this before. As far as sturdiness of feathering props, I have had my Autostream (sold by Martec) for about 15 years and probably 20K sea miles. I picked a large poly line in Miami that sheared the bolts on my coupling and ripped out my cutless bearing and stopped the engine. No damage to my prop. I was impressed. Stainless is stronger than bronze and that might have something to do with it. I have had no problem with corrosion. We stopped using bronze for shafts a long time ago. I am not sure why folks still make props from it. I met folks in Central America who had had problems with other makes of feathering props--bent blades from strikes etc but I am not sure they would not have had similar problems with a fixed propeller and the sample was too small (you only hear of the problems) to draw a conclusion. FWIW.
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Old 06-04-2013, 15:57   #402
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Re: Autoprop ?

I'd also guess I've met a lot of Martec props. Simple dumb unpraised 2-blade folding props but they just sit there and work without fuss. Unless you sit too long and they turn into a barnacle ball that won't open at all.
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Old 08-04-2013, 09:00   #403
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Re: Autoprop ?

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Wait!! Fair is fair, I started this thread so I should get something too! LOL
That was the 15 06 2006 and you still look the same.
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Old 15-04-2013, 05:10   #404
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Re: Autoprop ?

Here in the Jungle you can't get a prop that isn't made of stainless. So, it's a fair question to me, why aren't more first world props made of stainless steel? The surely do work well in these waters.
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Old 15-04-2013, 11:28   #405
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Re: Autoprop ?

I'll guess it is cheaper and simpler to cast, forge, machine, re-balance bronze props as opposed to stainless ones, which would be simpler if you are stamping them out in a thin blade profile. Stainless is also damned expensive.
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