Aluminum Propellers Offer Lightweight Affordability
The most common metal used in boat propeller manufacture is the lightweight element aluminum. However, the characteristic shiny silver hue of aluminum is rarely on display on such propellers. Because this metal is significantly susceptible to corrosion, aluminum props are usually painted. This makes it a little difficult for boaters to determine immediately if aluminum propellers are present on a given watercraft. The main reason why many boaters prefer aluminum propellers to other kinds is their cost, which can be much less than a comparable propeller manufactured out of another metal.
Cost aside, however, there are other reasons why aluminum boat props stand out. Since they are very lightweight, they are an appropriate choice for small boats. Their lack of weight also makes them quite easy to carry about; an aluminum propeller is much more portable than one made of a heavier, denser kind of metal. When paired well with an engine and boat, they can deliver high performance. Best of all, perhaps, is their availability. Many different kinds of aluminum propellers are available for sale today. For example, both Vortex and Michigan Match propellers are manufactured in aluminum by the Michigan Wheel company.
Like all propellers, aluminum boat props are measured mainly in the two dimensions of diameter and pitch. Boaters will need to be sure that they choose a propeller that is sized appropriately for their watercraft. Another decision to be made is three blades versus four blades, as aluminum props come in both configurations.
Michigan Match Propellers: Quality at a Great Price
One of the great advantages of Michigan Match propellers is their price point. Michigan Match props are of a high quality and perform better than many propellers that come with motors to begin with, but they typically can be purchased for a lower price than comparable propellers from other major manufacturers. This is done without sacrificing the quality that customers have come to expect, which means that there is no reason for boating enthusiasts not to choose Michigan Match propellers when they need an aftermarket solution that will deliver solid propulsion and acceleration.
High Quality Spindle
One of the best features of propellers from Michigan Match is the spindle. These are fashioned from NAVAL brass and feature a hub cushioned with rubber in order to absorb the stress and impact that comes with any mechanical system. Boaters who have Michigan Match props can shift gears without worrying that this very action is wearing down their spindle to an inordinate degree.
In addition, Michigan Match propellers have a rubber bushing that will spin free when subjected to any significant impact. This feature helps the system to avoid greater levels of damage that would be more expensive and time-consuming to repair.
In appearance, propellers manufactured by Michigan Match are powder black with a high gloss that makes them aesthetically appealing and helps to cut down on the drag that can result in a loss of speed. The coating also serves to protect the aluminum core of the propeller.
Vortex Propellers Offer Functional Beauty
Michigan Wheel Vortex props are high performance propellers fashioned from aluminum, a metal that is strong yet lightweight. Both of these features lead to engine efficiencies and can contribute to lower fuel consumption. All Vortex propellers utilize the revolutionary interchangeable hub system known as the XHS Xchangeable.
In addition, Vortex propellers possess a high degree of precision in the blade design, incorporating both high performance geometry and a careful balance among the blades for optimum performance. Covered with a powder coating that imparts a high gloss finish, Michigan Wheel Vortex propellers are beautiful as well as functional. They also come in a large range of styles and designs engineered to suit various applications. For example, Vortex propellers can be purchased in both three and four blade varieties. They work with V6 and V8 engines, and they can be used with engines that vary in horsepower from 20 HP all the way up to an impressive 70 HP.
These features make them ideal replacement propellers, but many boaters do not wait until their current prop develops a problem to buy a Vortex replacement. Instead, they carry a Vortex prop on board as a spare so that they are prepared in advance to deal with emergencies. Few motorists would consider an outing in the absence of a spare tire – it only stands to reason that boating enthusiasts would be well advised to have a spare propeller on hand.
Choices for Aluminum Propellers
Two very common metals used for casting boat propellers are stainless steel and aluminum, with aluminum being the most commonly used metal for this purpose. Boating enthusiasts are divided in their opinion of the two, with some strongly preferring aluminum props over any other kind. One major advantage of aluminum propellers is their affordability; boaters can often buy them for a fraction of what a stainless steel propeller in the same size range would cost. Aluminum propellers are also highly portable, in part because the nature of aluminum makes them lightweight. In addition, these propellers deliver high performance and are appropriate for a wide range of boating activities.
One caveat about aluminum props, however, is that they must be kept painted in order to keep corrosion at bay.
Michigan Wheel Aluminum Propellers
The Michigan Wheel company, a historically well-respected name in propeller manufacture, offers many different models of aluminum prop. They produce two major lines of such propellers: the Vortex and Michigan Match series.
Vortex propellers from Michigan Wheel feature XHS hub technology and incorporate features such as geometric blades that deliver high performance in part because they are precisely balanced for maximum efficiency in the water. They also look attractive, boasting a powder coat finish that will help to prevent corrosion from forming on the blades or hub. All Vortex props come with a limited lifetime warranty.
Michigan Match propellers feature a hub already pressed in, which means there is no need to purchase an additional hub kit. Michigan Match propellers are manufactured from high-level aluminum alloys that help the prop stay in excellent condition for many years.
Purchase Options for Johnson Boat Propellers
Johnson boat propellers are available in both aluminum and stainless steel varieties. One of the first decisions any boating enthusiast must make when considering propellers is this very issue – choice of metal.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Aluminum
Aluminum is generally considered to be an “all purpose” metal appropriate for a wide variety of recreational uses. This is because it is less expensive than stainless steel. Johnson propellers that use aluminum are, therefore, more affordable for the average boater.
Although aluminum is indeed less strong per cubic inch than stainless steel, it is fully strong enough for most common boating uses. Pleasure crafts generally come equipped from the factory with aluminum propellers already installed. As long as a boater is careful to check that the propeller is from a reputable company and meets quality standards, it will be able to live up to the demands commonly placed on it during family fishing trips and other casual outings.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Stainless Steel
Stainless steel, on the other hand, is a much stronger metal than aluminum. This not only makes it more durable and long-lasting, but it also means that stainless steel can both survive more abuse and remain reliable under more trying circumstances.
High-end boating is the kind of situation where stainless steel Johnson Props are preferable. This is because a stainless steel propeller will allow boating enthusiasts to accelerate much faster and will also permit higher top speeds.
The major disadvantage of stainless steel, however, is that it is a more expensive option than aluminum.