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Old 05-28-2013, 02:10 PM   #1
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Propeller Cage

Just finished installing one on our boat so we have to worry less about pot buoys. Had it made up locally of SS. For those of you who have never seen one, here's some photos. Hope it works out okay. Just have to remember not to back into a line or hit it with a log.
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Old 05-28-2013, 02:21 PM   #2
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I like it!
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Old 05-28-2013, 02:30 PM   #3
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Do you have any concerns about rust if operating in salt water?

Electrolysis?: Will you be adding more zincs?

Will you need to remove the rudder to gain access to the propeller for its possible removal?
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Old 05-28-2013, 04:13 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwhatty View Post
Just finished installing one on our boat so we have to worry less about pot buoys. Had it made up locally of SS. For those of you who have never seen one, here's some photos. Hope it works out okay. Just have to remember not to back into a line or hit it with a log.
Looks great! Good design. How is the upper tab just forward of the rudder attached? And the bolts at the keel, thru bolted? Any surprises during the installation?

No more wrapped lines that's for sure. Please give us a report after some time in the water.
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Old 05-28-2013, 04:50 PM   #5
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Do you have any concerns about rust if operating in salt water?

Electrolysis?: Will you be adding more zincs?

Will you need to remove the rudder to gain access to the propeller for its possible removal?
Mark:

Not concerned about rust. If in a few years it starts to get badly corroded, we'll have another made. This was not that expensive, especially relative to other boating costs.

Most of the fisherman do not add extra zincs or connect the cage to the bonding system (if they even have one).

Will see what it all looks like, including our usual zincs, when we haul the boat in 5 months or so and see if the zinc/bonding question needs to be re-visited.

It looks like I could just get the prop off and out of the cage w/o interference by the rudder. If I can't, I will just take one side or both sides of the cage off (it is made up of two pieces port and starboard) and the whole kit and kaboodle is designed to be removable.

I drilled and tapped the fiberglass of the keel for three 1/2"-20 bolts for the forward edges (on both port and starboard) of the cage. The glass was about 1 1/8" to 1 1/4" thick. The bolts tightened up nice and snug, but if they show any signs of not holding, will go to Plan B of through bolting using threaded rod (after we raise the boat from the bottom).

The aft end of the cage at the top of the hoop is bolted to a "T" fitting, which fitting in turn is through bolted with two 3/8-24 bolts up into the Lazarette and through a backing plate. The lower aft end of the cage is also fastened with a 1/2"-20 bolts on each side of the aft end of the skeg first into glass and then into about 1/2" of bronze that was inside the skeg. Am very confident in the aft end fastenings.

All holes and fastenings were well and thoroughly gooped with 3M 4200 (not 5200 thank you).

Two more photos showing the two pieces that make up the cage:
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Old 05-28-2013, 06:21 PM   #6
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These prop cages are well regarded and a common add on in New England. They are common on Lobster Boats and a great addition to Non high speed yachts.
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Old 05-28-2013, 06:33 PM   #7
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I not only like it, but it would fit on Firefly just fine.

hmmmmm
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Old 05-28-2013, 06:52 PM   #8
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Firefly
Are you moored at Grand Harbor?
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Old 05-28-2013, 08:34 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by dwhatty View Post
Just finished installing one on our boat so we have to worry less about pot buoys.
WOW! can't wait to find out how it works, Dave! Are you in the water yet?
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Old 05-29-2013, 12:30 AM   #10
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At the risk of starting WW3, another potential benefit of a single screw boat?
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Old 05-29-2013, 12:49 AM   #11
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Old 05-29-2013, 07:07 AM   #12
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Firefly
Are you moored at Grand Harbor?

Yes
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Old 05-29-2013, 07:34 AM   #13
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I saw your boat last fall. I delivered the Bertram 36 "Sweet Lelani" for my friend Steve. He has been at Grand Harbor Marina since Oct. He has a condo there, but lives in Philadelphia.
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Old 05-29-2013, 08:14 AM   #14
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A prop cage seems like a great idea and would be very helpful here on the Chesapeake where there are crab pots everywhere. Though the fishermen are not supposed to put them in many places, they routinely fill up navigational channels, entrances to harbors and marinas, wherever they think there might be a crab.

Does anyone have any experience with a cage regarding impact on speed? I imagine there would be a negligible impact on the performance of a full-displacement boat. Endurance is a semi-displacement design with a top speed of about 20 kts and a cruise of about 16-17 kts - I wonder what kind of impact a cage would have on that?
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Old 05-29-2013, 11:45 AM   #15
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Can't be too bad as the lobstermen run those speeds and often have cages.
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Old 05-29-2013, 12:55 PM   #16
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One suggested change to consider on your next iteration of this excellent cage: Make the aft sides of the cage solid as they encircle the prop, thus creating a "duct" effect. I've seen those on large commercial vessels where they are said to offer a significant increase in propeller efficiency.
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Old 05-29-2013, 01:11 PM   #17
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David – Your SS two part prop-cage looks great and I feel your keel fastening system will last you well.

I've thought of cages on twin screw but very afraid to through-bolt into hull-bottom. Because... on our twin the cages would take the brunt of a grounding or deadhead collision... unlike yours having a skeged keel to greatly defer impact and also take the stress from fasteners. That is another good reason to like single screw boats! That said - For reasons, I'm still partial to twins!

1970... “Main Coast Shipbuilders”, Rockland/Owls Head (I then worked there at 18 yrs of age) had multi boat contract with Audubon Society for duplicate 31’ers. Each was being fitted with prop cage as Audubon planned to take their boats into real shallow waters (i.e. bird territory). These cages were through-bolted to the hull’s bottom (which I thought was risky at best if a deadhead was hit at speed or severe grounding occurred at speed). I heard the cages were no detriment to the speed of these fairly quick boats.

Main Coast Shipbuilders never did build all that were ordered due to its going broke as well as some real seamy business BS that its founder(s) pulled off. In my opinion that builder cut more corners in build-outs than a pizza maker shredding cheese! The two foremen reminded me of mafia types, big bad ******** providing shuck and jive!! My dad had been lead Purchasing Agent for that company and would tell me horror stories, he finally quit! Working there for a while I saw some real bad builds that were let fly! Dad and I knew the head guy from “Lang’s Boat Sales” and other boat yards in LI, NY. At about 15 yrs of age I was sitting in his LI office as this guy offered that (then future) job-position to dad... when we left – I said... dad, be careful, don’t trust him, that guy is a crook! In the long run I was proven correct!! He eventually (and suddenly) gutted Main Coast Shipbuilders of everything... then, from what I learned, he secretively fled to Canada.
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Old 05-29-2013, 01:18 PM   #18
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I saw your boat last fall. I delivered the Bertram 36 "Sweet Lelani" for my friend Steve. He has been at Grand Harbor Marina since Oct. He has a condo there, but lives in Philadelphia.

That Bertram is a nice boat, I aim to miss it each time I return to my slip.
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Old 05-29-2013, 01:52 PM   #19
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Can't be too bad as the lobstermen run those speeds and often have cages.

A knot or two for the fast boys is what I hear. Also, some that run that fast take an inch out of (or was it add an inch to) their prop pitch when they install a cage. I was told that at my speed (ha!) I needn't worry about that.
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Old 05-29-2013, 01:53 PM   #20
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Dave! Are you in the water yet?

#@%*&#*@
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