Anyone Got An Extra Prop? Come On, You Knew This Would Be Todays Story!

prop mess 2

Oh, there is more crap below this

Well, after removing the oyster trap things, took about a half hr ish. It was clear the prop was torn up. And can be repaired, but in the mean time, just getting an extra is the way to go so we have two. But the prop on the boat I don’t think is a Chris Craft prop with a number HH5338 15×14 on a larger shaft. it measures 1 3/8. I will say this prop size and pitch performs very well. What’s interesting though is that something as simple looking as a shaft and prop can be so complex. So today, we can talk propellers. Or better yet, prop disasters!

prop mess

Look below, we had several all tied together. Like an anchor

Oyster trap

My hands are a bit raw from trying to tear this off. Ugh, the sad thing is that there is no way of knowing who it belongs to. I love all the Watermen around here, and would be happy to return it and pay for the damages. Maybe they will have a prop?

Todays header is of Suzy on Sunday morning after being left over night after she towed us in at 11Pm. What a morning. I had tried out WECATCHEM to see how bad the prop was. And turned the ipone and bam! As a side note, that little trip lost me a nut on the shaft. So what must have happened is that in the mess, the cotter pin was trashed and the nut came off. WECATCHEM is now in the barn after a slow run to the trailer.

suzy sunrise


23 replies
  1. Greg Lewandowski
    Greg Lewandowski says:

    Look’s like you have some work to do, but from the looks of that thing you tied into, it could have been much worse. If you can not find a prop, call Henry Smith in Algonac.

  2. chad
    chad says:

    I’d say you got lucky, it looks like the oyster trays avoided contact with bottom of the boat. Something lighter might spun around and torn up the bottom. Something heavier might have torn the bottom off the boat.

  3. Troy in ANE
    Troy in ANE says:

    Matt the HH number means you prop has been re-maned by H&H Propeller out of Salem Mass. They are very popular in the northeast (AKA ANE) and do a great job.

    I personally start all parts searches with Jim Staib of Fine Wood Boats, if he doesn’t have it you probably don’t really need it. He even has a list of CC prop numbers on his site. (Will have to ask Jim why he doesn’t advertise here on WB)

  4. m-fine
    m-fine says:

    First, a prop is not the only thing on a boat that can break. Why have a spare prop when a spare boat will serve your needs so much better?

    Second, I recall recently sending you an ad for a very nice backup boat. Coincidentally, a tunnel drive where the prop is protected and will not catch oyster traps or logs etc. yet you felt such a fine craft was beneath your new champagne life style. Now it seems karma has caught up with you, and rather quickly. The boating gods have a short temper, never tempt them.

  5. darthtrader
    darthtrader says:

    In your repair journey, inspect two additional areas; the strut and your shaft straightness. During these wrap around misadventures the strut can develop a hairline fracture which will grow into a full blown crack and eventually fail at the most inopportune time. Quite often the shaft gets tweaked and ends up with a slight bend which will cause annoying vibration. You can attempt to straighten it, or just replace it. Find an automotive crankshaft shop and have them straighten it. Their straightening and checking fixture makes quick and accurate work out of the task.

  6. Bill Hammond
    Bill Hammond says:

    Phew! Looks like your luck held!! You must be doing something right!!! You probably averting something much worse ala “On Golden Pond” style crash by tangling up with those oyster pots.

    I’m really glad to hear you say you would gladly reimburse the Watermen for their damaged gear. They have a pretty tough life and I’ll bet their margin is a slim as it gets!!

    Hey! There’s an idea for a couple of future stories: 1) finding the Watermen who those pots belong to. 2) Feature some stories of Working Wooden Boats!! The Mail Boat out of Detroit would one such example. Some Lobster Boats out in Maine. Wooden Tugs, Fire Boats etc. I know I’d love to hear those kinds of stories.

    • Cobourg Kid
      Cobourg Kid says:

      Fantastic idea Bill stories about great old wooden work boats would definitely be a very cool addition to Woody Boater ; unfortunately writing in-depth stories like that are definitely time and money bandits for authors

      Good news is that Wooden Boat magazine often features such stories and they are available on its back issues web site for download as a PDF. Even better those stories can be had for a very reasonable price.

      Apropos of Matt’s little shellfish problem you might want to check out Scrapin’ Time — The crabbers and crab boats of Smith Island, Maryland a fantastic story authored by Randall Peffer. It’s a wonderful account of a day and night in the life if of watermen who earn a living on the Chesapeake .You can find the story in WB issue 241, November 2014

  7. Jimmy
    Jimmy says:

    A new Acme prop will save you some money and are made on a CNC machine and will give you better performance and a better ride it also brings the bow down. Those props work amazing on our old boats.

  8. Matt B
    Matt B says:

    Matt, you don’t want to keep WECATCHEM after all this. As a kind gesture for all you do, I will take it off you hands….. for cheap of course.

  9. Mark
    Mark says:

    I have a contact at H & H in Salem if you need it. The re-did my prop., straightened my strut, un bent by engine coupler, ……..

    Pleased with everything.

  10. Tommyholm
    Tommyholm says:

    Get a four blade prop from ACme (even though they won’t advertise and support wood boat clubs) and get that old tub going , up on plane, geez. Btw , first time I have heard of an oyster stopping a CC boat, but not surprised. Ride a Thoroughbred,

  11. jim g
    jim g says:

    Matt, Call Bill Sr. at Smith and Co. in Algonac, MI and tell him you want an ACME prop for the boat. Give him the original size prop that would be on the boat. He will figure out what you need. Trust me you will love the performance of the ACME prop. If you try it and don’t like it Bill will usually take it back. I have put 6 or 7 on customers boats. From a 17′ barrelback with a 130 horse engine to a repo hacker with a 350 F.I. engine to a 20′ Ventnor. The difference is amazing and there less money then a new Michigan prop. Call me if you have any questions. You should still have it from when we talked about the dory.

    • Alex
      Alex says:

      I re propped Marion E this way. With a 3 blade. She came with an aftermarket 4 blade.

      Amazing difference in attitude. Boat planes faster and flatter and just flies. She’s still not quite right. When light in fuel, with just me aboard (also light) and at top end, there was a little porpoising. But:

      1) Who needs to go 50 mph+ in a 25SP.

      2) I should never be light on fuel (I’m not Harrison).

      3) At all other speeds, the improvement is far better.

      I am still getting rudder vibration feedback in the steering at speed as I’ve always had with this boat, but that too is quite a bit better. That’s a separate issue to tackle.

      Good luck with your decision. But my vote is for Smith in MI. He’s amazing.

  12. Rich Marschner
    Rich Marschner says:

    Matt, I’ve never thought of you as a shellfish sort of guy, what with all the generous things you’ve done for our hobby.

    Just goes to show, you can’t tell about a guy until the oysters-and-chips are down….

    Glad it wasn’t worse, as many above have pointed out!

  13. Matt
    Matt says:

    OK who stunk up the room with bad puns? HA.. I got an original Chris Craft prop from Jim Staib. I like the idea that its the correct chris craft prop. We all to so much trouble to make sure things are original, why not the performance. Its Ok that its not perfect. But it is the experience. A little deep, but WECATCHEM is all so like the factory delivered it. I cant make it better. As it turns out the area that I was headed in the dark was a pile of old rotted pilings. The prop saved me from a far worse deal. I am not a fan of night boating, and now even more so.

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