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Old 09-02-2015, 03:31 PM   #141
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The rock is indeed relevant. Assigning degree of blame and deductible can cause further delays. Payment via insurance claims and time go hand in hand. Is it an insurance claim - that could well be a reason for a hard to get part delay. So say my contacts at a very large yard on salt water where I do my boating. It gets doubly complicated when an insurer will not pay for new but rebuilt instead. Are we speaking new or rebuilt?

I don't have a dog in this fight but after 8 pages of Zeus bashing over facts not known I'll be in the Z corner.

BTW, I have seen Sabres with pods and the boat space and design is marvelous IMHO. Easy to see why GB sales of old stuff are down.
Not to prolong this discourse but to make the facts clear, the rock is not relevant as the owner of the boat told the dealer to order the part immediately. It didn't matter if it was insurance or not, the drive needed to be replaced. The fact is the adjuster approved the claim the very next day.

The dealer for the boat called Mercury directly yesterday and asked why there was such a delay. He was told that these drives are not an off the shelf item and each was individually built to order. They said the current build time was 2-weeks minimum and shipping could take another 2-weeks. That's why it took so long for the drive to appear.

As I said earlier, the drive unit did arrive and that a part was missing. I must correct that; the part was not "missing." What they found was that the mounting plate which is on the boat itself was corroded and needed to be replaced. The plate was exposed to seawater for about 12 hours. This makes the other drive's mounting plate suspect as well. That drive will be removed for inspection after the boating season ends.

Despite all the conjecture about whether or not this time lag is inordinate, the boat is still sitting on the hard at the yard as the summer ticks away. (Not as ticked as the owner.)

I will update when the job is finally done, but as for me, I will stick with props and shafts until (and if) these propulsion systems become more readily available.

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Old 09-02-2015, 06:37 PM   #142
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Thanks for the update Howard. Given the popularity of the drives and unique nature of each build easy to understand the one month.

Pods and joy sticks are really an electronics issue with the drives theoretically just iron. Wonder if Volvo and Mercury will be at the party 30 years from now? Especially in FL during a lightning storm.
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Old 09-02-2015, 06:51 PM   #143
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Thanks for the update Howard. Given the popularity of the drives and unique nature of each build easy to understand the one month.

Pods and joy sticks are really an electronics issue with the drives theoretically just iron. Wonder if Volvo and Mercury will be at the party 30 years from now? Especially in FL during a lightning storm.
I heard that. With electronically controlled engines, MicroCommanders and joy sticks, we will all be vulnerable to all sorts of gremlins. Add to that our electronic equipment, and it will probably be good to go back to the old
DR plotting.

What's that? Some have never done DR plotting?

Seriously, we have enough problems with our electronic controlled equipment miles away from salt water. I was surprised that just a few hours of exposure to salt water would mean replacement of the plate sealing the pod. Even chlorine in tap water can affect electronic connections.
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Old 09-02-2015, 07:13 PM   #144
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I was surprised that just a few hours of exposure to salt water would mean replacement of the plate sealing the pod.

That is perhaps the most troubling thing I've heard about pods in general to date. What's even more surprising is that nobody thought to check it a month ago when ordering the pod.
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Old 09-02-2015, 07:21 PM   #145
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That is perhaps the most troubling thing I've heard about pods in general to date. What's even more surprising is that nobody thought to check it a month ago when ordering the pod.
The dealer ordered the drive but does not do the install. A crew from Mercury comes to the dealer's facility to do the job and they detected the corroded mounting plate. It's not easy to get on their schedule and today all the dealer could reach was their voicemail. Labor Day weekend wouldn't ya know.
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Old 09-02-2015, 07:51 PM   #146
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There are also things about the pods that are not intuitive to those who have boated for decades. People try to use zincs other than those from Volvo or Zeus and get into trouble. Actually their zincs aren't zinc. They require them to be serviced and replaced regularly. A pod owner needs a diver checking things even more than the rest of us.
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Old 09-02-2015, 09:22 PM   #147
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If you are following the "Rudders" thread you might have noticed the post by Pgitug:

"Just finishing running the Erie Canal. There have been at least two boats with PODS that will give you $16,000 reasons they may not be as protected as keel/shaft drive vessels."

Interesting and relavent to say the least.

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Old 09-02-2015, 11:42 PM   #148
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I have no idea. I know IPS is in about 250 brands and estimate Zeus is in about a third of that. I don't see them broken down anywhere. They hit a market segment that was struggling too, the lower end of inboards and upper end of inboard-outboards. I/O sales have continued to shrink.

I did find an interesting test finally in the same boat, from Yachting Magazine, in a Sabre 52 express. 2 x IPS 900 vs. 2 X CAT 865.

Beyond the Hype: Pod Drives | Yachting Magazine
OK - I read it all; I'm not too awfully impressed.
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Old 09-03-2015, 12:23 AM   #149
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OK - I read it all; I'm not too awfully impressed.
Don't think it was an article to impress, just to inform. I think it does a good job of laying out objective information.
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Old 09-03-2015, 12:32 AM   #150
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Don't think it was an article to impress, just to inform. I think it does a good job of laying out objective information.
Every article should (or at least could) leave some sort of an impression.

OK... I change the way I say it (repeating the same thing I said, but in more words)... their objective information did not impress me toward a good feeling for pods; at least at this level of development and constant/various needs required/apparent.
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Old 09-03-2015, 12:38 AM   #151
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Every article should (or at least could) leave some sort of an impression.

OK... I change the way I say it (repeating the same thing I said, but in more words)... their objective information did not impress me toward a good feeling for pods; at least at this level of development and constant/various needs required/apparent.
No, it doesn't make you want to run out to the store and buy a couple.
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Old 09-03-2015, 12:42 AM   #152
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I`d prefer the gearbox inside the hull, than under it. I/O or sterndrives are a maintenance hassle, these seem no better in that respect, but there is the handling advantage. Even so, a month for a replacement just seems wrong.
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Old 09-03-2015, 12:44 AM   #153
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The dealer for the boat called Mercury directly yesterday and asked why there was such a delay. He was told that these drives are not an off the shelf item and each was individually built to order. They said the current build time was 2-weeks minimum and shipping could take another 2-weeks. That's why it took so long for the drive to appear.
So maybe a one-month delivery time is normal. Million-dollar boats waiting for $20,000 pods, so Mercury can manage its cash flow.
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Old 09-03-2015, 07:56 AM   #154
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No, it doesn't make you want to run out to the store and buy a couple.
Honestly... and, to the best of my intuitive (as well as learned) capabilities:

For extreme/best longevity with least need-filled services - - > Nothing beats a slow moven, single screw FD hull with good ol' heavy duty nearly forever dependable NA diesel that has straight drive with full keel and rugged skeg that supports a big, badass rudder. That combo may not be too sexy to many boaters... but it sure is sexy to thems that own em!

Of course - I say tongue in cheek: Next on my list of dependability is our bullet-proof Tollycraft. Am I a bit prejudice??- Naw! - LOL

For reasons, I would sorta like our twin screw Tolly to have duplicate heavy duty keels with full skegs built as original design. However, I imagine that extra weight and water-friction-drag would considerably limit its easy planing capabilities, top speed of 22 knots, and 1 nmpg fuel usage at 17 knots. Also might reduce its slow-travel (5 to 6 knot while running one engine) capabilities that nearly enable 3 nmpg.
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Old 09-03-2015, 10:28 AM   #155
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I may have misread the article, but the table showed a 45% fuel burn improvement at 25 knots when comparing two drive systems.

Doug Zurn designs either way but likes the improved range and economy of the IPS. Like comparing fuel burn differences of gas vs diesel almost.

IPS is at 6000 units installed and climbing. Not surprising we on TF are not accepting, our cruising style and go slow desires are not the audience.

Surprising that grounding a "fast" boat with straight drives has not been mentioned. Not a cheap fix either. So do we blame the drive or driver for a grounding? I've had two expensive groundings over the years, never blamed the boat.

Anybody have a Sail drive? Not to mention the clamoring over stern drives in the middle of the last century----.
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Old 09-03-2015, 10:59 AM   #156
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I may have misread the article, but the table showed a 45% fuel burn improvement at 25 knots when comparing two drive systems.

Doug Zurn designs either way but likes the improved range and economy of the IPS. Like comparing fuel burn differences of gas vs diesel almost.

IPS is at 6000 units installed and climbing. Not surprising we on TF are not accepting, our cruising style and go slow desires are not the audience.

Surprising that grounding a "fast" boat with straight drives has not been mentioned. Not a cheap fix either. So do we blame the drive or driver for a grounding? I've had two expensive groundings over the years, never blamed the boat.

Anybody have a Sail drive? Not to mention the clamoring over stern drives in the middle of the last century----.
So my wild guess on volume wasn't far off. Thanks. I wouldn't expect TF to be a big pod group, but this isn't their target audience. And the problems we're talking about are people running over and into things and that often isn't cheap or quick on any drive, especially when done at decent speed.

You're correct that the fuel efficiency is significant, more so on some than others. Plus space provided on a medium size boat. Good system for some people, not for others. Just because it isn't right for some doesn't make it bad.

As to stern drives, their share hasn't been lost to straight inboards. It's been lost on the lower end to outboards and to jets, on the upper end to pods, and in the middle just to lower sales of mid sized family boats, especially express.
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Old 09-03-2015, 11:58 AM   #157
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Art, I think B and B was correct in saying the artice was to inform rather than impress. To paraphrase Bentley Collins with Sabre pods impress buyers, and create excitement.

Sunchaser, Bentley also said that overall fuel savings were not that great. Especially when compared to the increased maintenance costs. Here is a chart that was performed on my boat. It was the Miami Boat Show boat. There was 450 gal of fuel, 12 people, and no water on board. She was carrying a pretty good load. Lighter loaded with smoother wind and water her fuel burn is less.


Power: (2) 500-hp Yanmar 6CX diesels turning
26" by 35" bronze four-bladed props
through a ZF 280 gear with a 2.27:1 reduction.
Performance:
RPM MPH GPH dB-A
900 8.6 2.9 72
1200 10.0 6.7 74
1500 12.5 12.0 75
1800 18.0 17.5 84
2100 24.5 23.5 85
2500 30.7 35.9 87
2800 33.0 44.6 89
2950 35.6 54.9 90
Speeds measured by GPS in the Atlantic off Miami
Beach, Fla., in 10-12 mph winds and 1' to
2' waves with 12 people aboard, full fuel and
no water.
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Old 09-03-2015, 12:31 PM   #158
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After another 4 months in Alaska, I am amazed at how well cruise ships perform during docking and maintaining position without anchoring. No tugs just commercial grade pods (and computer controlled) buried well under the WL.

At some point a recreational pod design will arrive that will hold up better under normal operation. But maybe it requires a stout enough design that weight and size are too great. I do know that very large pumps have seal designs that hold up under high pressures, so the engineering and design is well known.

But, with a a success rate of say 99% per year, that could lead to a theoretical several dozen seal failures per year and lots of expense and grief. If Volvo were to offer a maintenance agreement that would be a good thing to have, ditto Zeus.
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Old 09-07-2015, 08:06 PM   #159
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If pods do create better mileage per gallon of fuel... why is that? Their gear-casing unit's under water drag must be similar to an o/d. I doubt struts and rudders on straight drives have any more drag than a pod's underwater profile. Is it the way gears are set up that lessens loss?


I just can't get my mind's-eye wrapped around why pods would be much more efficient... especially so much more as mentioned might be the case in Sunchaser post # 155
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Old 09-07-2015, 09:27 PM   #160
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Could counter rotating dual props have anything to do with it? Also props are located forward of the pod in "clean water". Just my wag
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