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Old 10-05-2020, 08:51 AM   #1
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Drive Savers?

Thinking of having them installed on our Lehmans while we’re out for a bottom job. Any thoughts—pro or con? Are any brands considered better than others . . . or to be avoided?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 10-05-2020, 09:00 AM   #2
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Greetings,
Mr. 99. We have them on our boat, twin Lehmans but I have no idea what the make is nor if they work. They are hard plastic and quite rigid. I think there ARE some models which allow for more than the .003" alignment requirements so that might be an advantage IF you're a bit out or if you have a vibration issue. $.02...
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Old 10-05-2020, 09:18 AM   #3
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Sonas has these.

Welcome to Aquadrive
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Old 10-05-2020, 09:44 AM   #4
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Thanks, guys.

RT, I may be mistaken, but think they only “work” when they shatter after you hit something. . Just to add another wrinkle which won’t relate to drive savers, do you get much vibration in the boat when idling?

Menzies, are yours mounted to Lehmans? Do you have the “soft” engine mounts and can you tell if they’re actually reducing vibration?
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Old 10-05-2020, 10:32 AM   #5
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Thanks, guys.

RT, I may be mistaken, but think they only “work” when they shatter after you hit something. . Just to add another wrinkle which won’t relate to drive savers, do you get much vibration in the boat when idling?

Menzies, are yours mounted to Lehmans? Do you have the “soft” engine mounts and can you tell if they’re actually reducing vibration?
No, small Luggers. But I don't believe the powerplant matters.

I can't compare before and after because they were there when we bought the boat. However there is zero noticable vibration.
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Old 10-05-2020, 10:35 AM   #6
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Sonas has these.

Welcome to Aquadrive
The Aquadrive is not a simple retrofit. Drivesavers usually are.
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Old 10-05-2020, 10:43 AM   #7
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I have drive savers. I put them on. One of my engines had been removed for fuel tank work and when it went back there was some wobble. I adjusted and got rid of the wobble. I added the shaft savers as insurance. They are soft enough to deal with minor misalignment. I consider them flexible couplings. They would be a good addition to any boat.
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Old 10-05-2020, 11:10 AM   #8
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I have a Federal Flexible Coupling on Sandpipers single FL 120.

It made a slight improvement in reducing vibration. Not a huge amount.

New motor mounts reduced the vibration a lot.

The biggest vibration reduction was installing a 200# flywheel.
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Old 10-05-2020, 11:11 AM   #9
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I have a Federal Flexible Coupling on Sandpipers single FL 120.

It made a slight improvement in reducing vibration. Not a huge amount.

New motor mounts reduced the vibration a lot.

The biggest vibration reduction was installing a 200# flywheel.
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Old 10-05-2020, 11:45 AM   #10
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I should have mentioned, I have new motor mounts, but there is significant vibration when the two engines are idling and possibly working against one another. It mostly disappears when I engage the synchronizer, so I’m guessing drive savers wouldn’t have much impact on vibration one way or the other. The engines are due for a valve adjustment and possibly injector service, so maybe that will help with vibration.
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Old 10-05-2020, 12:03 PM   #11
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There are a number of prior threads on drivesavers.

I have run over pot warps on boats with and without. Engines stopped in both cases. Drivesaver turned into a potato chip. Maybe a 'soft' stop instead of a 'hard' stop?

I think spurs or some type of skeg extension would provide better protection.
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Old 10-05-2020, 01:05 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by syjos View Post
I have a Federal Flexible Coupling on Sandpipers single FL 120.

It made a slight improvement in reducing vibration. Not a huge amount.

New motor mounts reduced the vibration a lot.

The biggest vibration reduction was installing a 200# flywheel.
Do these sacrifice themselves, like other drive savers, with heavy impact or are they just to dampen vibration?
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Old 10-05-2020, 01:11 PM   #13
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There are a number of prior threads on drivesavers.

I have run over pot warps on boats with and without. Engines stopped in both cases. Drivesaver turned into a potato chip. Maybe a 'soft' stop instead of a 'hard' stop?

I think spurs or some type of skeg extension would provide better protection.
I have spurs and a full keel that is semi-protective but they didn’t keep me from wrapping a thick mooring pennant around one of the props on our first night with this boat. Stalled out the engine but we were luckily at idle speed.
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Old 10-05-2020, 01:33 PM   #14
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syjos wrote;
“The biggest vibration reduction was installing a 200# flywheel.“

Some cars could use that treatment.

syjos how did you get a 200lb flywheel? Off the shelf I assume but if you modified a lighter fly (added to it?) or what? If it’s not off the shelf how’d ya get it?

Could be interesting. Like maybe there was a straight eight Lehman.
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Old 10-05-2020, 01:57 PM   #15
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We have/had them on our boat. I removed one on the port engine last winter when I had the engine out and will remove the starboard one this winter when I have that engine out. They don’t allow a good engine alignment and I don’t trust them if I hit something. YMMV...
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Old 10-05-2020, 03:05 PM   #16
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I have hit hundreds of things from rocks to logs to sunken boats working commercial salvage boats and think shaft savers are really not needed.

No commercial boat I have ever operated had them....almost all workboats that are in way more danger of hitting things than a recreational vessel.

If you hit something hard, they don't save your props and only maybe your shafts. Who here has had a tranny disabled from hitting something? I will bet some, but not more than half.

At least East Coast cruising....regular river driving, I can't comment on.
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Old 10-05-2020, 03:08 PM   #17
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With a drive-saver you may or may not need to cut your drive shaft shorter. You can carry either a spare or a spacer if you need to replace it while traveling.
With an aquadrive you will need to shorten the shaft a bunch, and install a mount to hold all the thrust. The aquadrive will be expensive but they work great. If your shaft is worn and needs to be replaced cutting it for the aquadrive might allow it to be reused and that will offset some of the cost.
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Old 10-05-2020, 03:22 PM   #18
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I have hit hundreds of things from rocks to logs to sunken boats working commercial salvage boats and think shaft savers are really not needed.

No commercial boat I have ever operated had them....almost all workboats that are in way more danger of hitting things than a recreational vessel.

If you hit something hard, they don't save your props and only maybe your shafts. Who here has had a tranny disabled from hitting something? I will bet some, but not more than half.

At least East Coast cruising....regular river driving, I can't comment on.
Thanks, Scott. Still pondering this.

Good to hear your experience but I’m guessing most commercial boats have bigger maintenance budgets than mine. Also, I’m wondering if tranny damage is always instantly apparent?
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Old 10-05-2020, 03:23 PM   #19
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We have/had them on our boat. I removed one on the port engine last winter when I had the engine out and will remove the starboard one this winter when I have that engine out. They don’t allow a good engine alignment and I don’t trust them if I hit something. YMMV...
Generic drive savers or Syjos’s flexible couplings in post 9?
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Old 10-05-2020, 03:30 PM   #20
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When I removed the drive savers I had to get a spcaer made to fill the gap. I got it from Spurs, not cheap though. But the shafts are not long enough without the savers.
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