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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 09-06-2008
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Brunton Autoprop

I am considering an Autoprop for my Bayfield 25. Anyone have real world experience of these?
I have the 1GM Yanmar and need to know the gear ratio. Where would I find this? On the gearbox? Or will I have to measure it at haul out?
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Old 09-06-2008
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We installed an Autoprop on our last boat. It had a fixed three blade and there was a big improvement in light wind sailing speed. The biggest difference was in motoring speed, we gained a full knot at the same RPM. My brother still has the boat and the Autoprop has been on for at least 8 years with no problems. Very well built. I have heard some discussion about people losing a blade, but I have no details.

You should be able to find the gear ration either in your manual or from any Yanmar dealer.

John
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Of all the props in the world- fixed, feathering, folding or otherwise- the Autoprop is the only one I would recommend you do not buy. Among other issues, they have this nasty habit of throwing blades. Check this thread from cruisersforum.com:

Autoprop?? - Cruisers & Sailing Forums
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Old 09-10-2008
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Thanks for the replies. I read the other forum and have decided against the Autoprop. It makes interesting points and as I have an angled shaft and the prop is in an aperture both of which cause vibration problems with the autoprop it is apparently unsuitable for the Bayfield. I'll probably stick with my fixed propeller. I was inspired to investigate variable pitch though. That would be idea as forward and reverse could be regulated infinitely by a cockpit control and the prop could be manual feathered for sailing. Anyone know of a manufacturer of small variable pitch props? I do recall seeing one on a small powerboat in Small Boat Journal several years ago.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fstbttms View Post
Of all the props in the world- fixed, feathering, folding or otherwise- the Autoprop is the only one I would recommend you do not buy. Among other issues, they have this nasty habit of throwing blades. Check this thread from cruisersforum.com:
Autoprop?? - Cruisers & Sailing Forums
I went through over a hundred of the postings there and the only mention of "thrown blades" was Yours speaking about Max Props - Not AutoProps ??? Your posting -
Originally Posted by smm
Also, I've heard too many lost prop stories regarding Maxprop (Profligate here in SF twice) to be sanguine about them.
They have been known to throw the ocassional blade as well. I have personally seen this on several different boats.
So..... do you happen to remember if there are any AutoProp blade losses in the next hundred postings, or were you actually speaking of Maxprops ?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by christyleigh View Post
I went through over a hundred of the postings there and the only mention of "thrown blades" was Yours speaking about Max Props - Not AutoProps ??? Your posting -
Originally Posted by smm
Also, I've heard too many lost prop stories regarding Maxprop (Profligate here in SF twice) to be sanguine about them.
They have been known to throw the ocassional blade as well. I have personally seen this on several different boats.
So..... do you happen to remember if there are any AutoProp blade losses in the next hundred postings, or were you actually speaking of Maxprops ?
Yes, I posted in that thread several times about Autoprops throwing blades, as did others. I think I must have misread, two and a half years ago, the particular post that I replied to (and you quoted here.) I did not mean to infer that Max Props throw blades. In actuality, I have never come across a Max Prop that has done that. But as you read, I have firsthand knowledge of several Autoprops that have lost blades and have heard anecdotally of many others. In fact, Autoprop issued a recall because of the problem. There is further discussion of the Autoprop issue in that thread (and others) on Cruisers Forum.
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Fast- do you know if this problem with the Autoprop has been resolved by Brunton? With the 10+ years experience I had with our Autoprop on the last boat I would really like to install one on the new boat. The ability to motor at lower RPM"s, amazing stopping power and no walking in reverse make it a very desirable prop. But reliability outweighs the other advantages, I don't want to be in a remote location and need to send the prop back for an expensive repair.

Thanks for any info. you may have, John
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If you treat any prop with moving parts like a fixed prop it will fail at some point



If you look at the parts drawing it clearly requires matiance far beyond a fixed prop
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Fast- do you know if this problem with the Autoprop has been resolved by Brunton?
I have zero information regarding any resolution.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluerover View Post
I was inspired to investigate variable pitch though. That would be idea as forward and reverse could be regulated infinitely by a cockpit control and the prop could be manual feathered for sailing. Anyone know of a manufacturer of small variable pitch props?
I have never seen or heard of such a prop for small boats. My guess is that there is no market for it due the ineveitable installation, maintenance and cost issues.
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