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Old 26-11-2021, 10:59   #1
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FLEXOFOLD props on a multi

Curious if anyone has experience with 2-blade FLEXOFOLD props on their saildrives. Would love to hear any pros/cons over fixed blade props.
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Old 26-11-2021, 12:51   #2
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Re: FLEXOFOLD props on a multi

Not multi, installed on 30' mono.
More than pleased with 2-blade 15" Flexofold prop installed 15 years ago.
Excellent performance, including in reverse.
No prop walk.
At the time believe Flexo was the only folding prop Yanmar had approved on
their SD-20 saildrives, there may be more now.
There is much info in archived threads here on CF.
Had been discussions of props falling off, thinking mostly from bad installs.
Make sure TAB WASHER is installed correctly.
Hearing stories about boats losing props so when I installed I used red Loctite
(questioning if I would regret someday).
Ten years later when I removed prop to changes seals I had no problem removing bits,
just used a leverage.
Also used Boat life Life Seal to adhere outer lower rubber flap, still holding srtrong.
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Old 26-11-2021, 22:19   #3
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Re: FLEXOFOLD props on a multi

I wasn't going to post, but this thread isn't very active, and my information isn't completely useless... I leave it for you to judge.

We have shaft drive, and three bladed Flex0Fold props. (17x13 inch) (See why I wasn't going to post? )

We've been happy with them. I found the quality to be quite good, and the installation fairly simple. I'm happy with their performance in forward and reverse. I'd say I have about 50-60% of the thrust in reverse compared to forward. It's good, but not as good as a fixed prop in reverse. A small compromise, for the lack of drag while sailing.

I'm happy with our purchase, and would recommend Flex0Fold to others.

I hope there's something in this post that helps a bit.

Cheers.
Paul.
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Old 27-11-2021, 06:18   #4
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Re: FLEXOFOLD props on a multi

Changed from fixed 2-blade to flexifold 2-blade on my FP Orana. Better in every aspect including motoring as the blades are bigger. Best upgrade I done on the boat.
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Old 28-11-2021, 07:36   #5
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Re: FLEXOFOLD props on a multi

Purchased a Maine Cat 3 years ago with 2 blade Flex Folds on Yanmar SD20's. Everything appeared tight on survey but I threw a blade after 2000 nm of sailing. Turned out they would not sell a new blade alone - only in pairs and it cost as 90% of new so I just purchased new. They require use of a special underwater locktight to hold the pivot shaft retaining screws and it seems that whoever had them apart last either didn't use the correct locktight or it failed. In my opinion using locktight to keep your propeller blade on is poor design practice - I would much prefer a mechanical locking system. In order to safeguard I used the correct locktight when fitting the retaining screws into their recessed locations and then filled the recesses flush with thickened epoxy which will be a bear to get out but should ensure they stay put at sea.
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Old 28-11-2021, 09:51   #6
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Re: FLEXOFOLD props on a multi

Have flexOFold on my Lagoon 470 and like then over the prior Autoprop.


Folding (or feathering) props will add at least 1/2 knot in almost all conditions except when your going fast. In light air probably even more.


Edit - mine are 3 bladed
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Old 28-11-2021, 12:57   #7
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Re: FLEXOFOLD props on a multi

Kiwi-prop I choose, composite, hence light weight, no corrosion problem, almost same power forward or reverse, adjustable pitch. Downside: regular greasing, can be done by diving
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Old 28-11-2021, 14:34   #8
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Re: FLEXOFOLD props on a multi

Quote:
Originally Posted by blubaju View Post
Kiwi-prop I choose, composite, hence light weight, no corrosion problem, almost same power forward or reverse, adjustable pitch. Downside: regular greasing, can be done by diving
A question if I may, are you happy with the Kiwi-prop, how long have you had it and would you go down that path again if needed. I ask because I am considering one for my boat.
Cheers, Bob.
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Old 28-11-2021, 18:41   #9
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Re: FLEXOFOLD props on a multi

Three blade Flexofolds are quite common on larger cats with sail drives (46-50ft). I have 3 blade Gori’s on a 50’. I chose the Gori over Flexofold as they are considered to have a slightly stronger reverse which is helpful maneuvering in a tight marina.

I would think a 2 blade would have even less reverse thrust.

Installing folding or feathering props is the best thing you can do to improve sailing performance of a cat. And many report improved speed under power compared to fixed props. The only real “con” is that fixed props are cheaper.
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Old 28-11-2021, 19:05   #10
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Re: FLEXOFOLD props on a multi

Hi Uncle Bob, use them since 11 years, but didn't sail last 4 years. We are on the third set of wings, as they are very light no need for balancing and may be exchanged on a single basis as spare parts are sold too. The tripods are still original. do not expect top performance of a VARIPROP "Blue Water" or similar. But, yes, I would buy them again. Repair & serviceability win.
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Old 28-11-2021, 20:40   #11
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Re: FLEXOFOLD props on a multi

Quote:
Originally Posted by blubaju View Post
Hi Uncle Bob, use them since 11 years, but didn't sail last 4 years. We are on the third set of wings, as they are very light no need for balancing and may be exchanged on a single basis as spare parts are sold too. The tripods are still original. do not expect top performance of a VARIPROP "Blue Water" or similar. But, yes, I would buy them again. Repair & serviceability win.
Does "wings" equal blades? three sets in 11 years isn't very good IMO. Our FOF three blade is now 17 years and ~65000 miles old and on the original blades (and everything else as well) with no perceptible slop in anything.

And a fellow CFer we know well has a 4 blade Kiwi and has managed to break three blades so far... some mis-design, some operator error, but still... They are easy to replace in the water, and perhaps that's a good thing!

Jim
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Old 28-11-2021, 20:45   #12
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Re: FLEXOFOLD props on a multi

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
Does "wings" equal blades? three sets in 11 years isn't very good IMO. Our FOF three blade is now 17 years and ~65000 miles old and on the original blades (and everything else as well) with no perceptible slop in anything.

And a fellow CFer we know well has a 4 blade Kiwi and has managed to break three blades so far... some mis-design, some operator error, but still... They are easy to replace in the water, and perhaps that's a good thing!

Jim
Jim, having spoken at length to a fellow CFer about his Kiwi prop experience and now the experience listed above I believe I am over my interest in that product.
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Old 28-11-2021, 20:58   #13
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Re: FLEXOFOLD props on a multi

Yes, sorry, English wasn't my mother's tongue, still I should have known. I killed a set of Maxprops on my last cat, running over a tree. No repair in the Philippines. I wanted propellers that cold be serviced by myself anytime & anywhere
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