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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 10-22-2003
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AUTOPROP

Anyone have experience with the self feathering AUTOPROP. Would like to here your comments. Sounds like an ideal prop.
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Old 10-22-2003
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AUTOPROP

I have one I am basically very happy with it. Yeah it''s kind of obcene what the
asking price is. If I was really a racer there are other folding props will be much better for drag, no question about it
(especially is very light air) ----- But I just cruise and go gunkholing and besides it will be WAY better with drag than my present 3 blade prop.
(Autoprop has 85% less drag than a 3 blade fixed ---- Folding Prop has 95%
less drag than a 3 blade fixed)

I beleive if I was a blue water cruising where I might have to get as much
efficiency as possible and put as many miles per gallon while motoring ----
I don''t think there is anything better than the Autoprop at efficiency
under varying loads (which happens often when the motor is needed to cruise
. (Autoprop is 25% more efficient than fixed 3 blades and 30% more than
folding)

Alot of Cruisers tend to motorsail when the winds are light. They don''t want to pull the sails down completely but want to get where they are going. Reaching hull speed at low RPM''s while motorsailing can be done
with the Autoprop due to the automatic variable pitched prop. The blades
will increase thier pitch due to the assist from sailing and create thrust
over all rpm''s. This will increase your speed and cut hours off of a voyage.

But one of the main reasons I am getting the Autoprop is the amount of power in reverse. Most of the props and, yes, especially the fixed ones are very inefficient in reverse. There is NOTHING better (Nothing less than
putting on a reverse-turned fixed propeller) than the Autoprop in reverse. The Autoprop is designed to produce the same lift and thrust in forward and
reverse.

You might ask why I care so much about power in reverse, well, like I said above, I like to go cruising and gunkholing. And, well, the places I like tend to go into shoal a bit and have *very* thin water under my keel. So if I touch bottom, the Autoprop is by far the most powerful propeller your
boat can have to "un-ground" itself......I look at it as part of my "Tow
Insurance".......

Its important that they get the size and type correct for your boat, they have different pitches for engine/hull configurations

The other feather prop the MaxiProp is a decent prop also. Its probably better for racing and drag, but nowhere''s near what an autoprop is for motoring or motorsailing

Go back through the archives and there is a lot of info in there.
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Old 10-22-2003
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AUTOPROP

I have a similar set of reasons why we like a feathering prop from a different manufacturer.
Reverse,
transition reliability,
and speed from fwd to reverse.

Huge performance gain both under sail and power. Ours ran about $1,200 plus two hang and holds. Kiwi props in N.Z.
Paul
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Old 10-23-2003
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AUTOPROP

tsenator

Thanks for the info. We will also be cruising & gunkholing. Autoprop sounds like the way to go.

Thanks again
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Old 11-10-2011
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Autoprop Problems

I have an Autoprop. AB Marine had rebuilt the prop in 2007. In May of 2009 and 225 hours later a blade came off. I sent it to AB Marine who sent it Buntons Marine in England. Buntons Marine replaced the blade for $1500. I had the prop lubricated every six months. I am always in deep water. It never touched anything but saltwater. I only go to Catalina and back. Other than the lost blade there was not any evidence of damage or distress.

At the time Steve Armitage of AB Marine told me that losing a blade was a “rare occurrence” and that he did not have an explanation for why the blade fell off. David Sheppard of Brunton's Propellers Ltd, told me losing a blade is an “an exceptional case”. Contrary to their comments the prop has been subject to a recall for lost blades. If you search other support groups and blogs you will find many others that have lost Autoprop blades. It demeans their credibility to say otherwise.

Although I enjoy the performance of my Autoprop my experience with AB Marine and Brunton's Propellers has been extremely disappointing. They are unwilling to stand behind their expensive product. In all their replies I feel like I am hearing from a politician trying to avoid giving a straight answer. I would stay away from anything that might need to be serviced by AB Marine or Buntons Marine (Varifold, Autoprop, Gori).
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Old 11-10-2011
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