Outboard Propeller Manufacturers
Outboard Propeller Information Center
Aluminum, Stainless Steel & Composite Propeller Manufacturers,
Propeller Repair and How to Select a Prop
Propellers for recreational boats, more specifically those for outboard motors and outboard engines
are covered by this page. It is a resource for those trying to select a propeller as well
for those researching the propeller industry. The page is provided by Polson Enterprises.
Link suggestions and comments about this page can be emailed to us.
Propeller Handbook : The Complete Reference for Choosing, Installing,
and Understanding Boat Propellers
by David Gerr
International Marine/Ragged Mountain Press
1st edition (June 11, 2001
Dimensions (in inches): 10.9 x 8.6 x 0.5 inches
This is THE great book on propellers. Billed as "the complete guide to choosing, understanding and installing boat propellers."
Plenty of technical details, but still easy to understand. It can teach you what all those odd propeller terms mean and even have you calculating prop slip in a jiffy. It is now available in paperback for less than half what it used to cost in hardback!
Order Yours Today!
See our very popular, free PROPELLER CALCULATOR to calculate boat speed, propeller pitch, propeller slip, and other variables.
Fixed Pitch AL & SS Propeller Manufacturers
Variable Pitch Propellers
- ProPulse has replaceable blades (from Sweden), briefly marketed by West Marine
- Composite Prop Articles
- Composite Prop Articles
RingProp (a ringed propeller)
Ringprop, a U.K. firm, is trying to introduce a "ringed" propeller to the industy. They are developing a specific technology launched in Australia about 20 years ago. RingProp is publicly traded on the AIM (Alternative Investment Market). AIM is the London Stock Exchange's global market for small, growing firms. RingProp's web site and coverage of their development includes several pieces of information about the propeller industry in general.
Propeller Catalogs & Larger or Interesting Propeller Retailers
Propeller Comparison Tests
Prop Selection and Educational Information
We also ran a couple polls asking outboard owners (by horsepower class) what propeller they might purchase next by manufacturer and material (AL or SS, etc) in 2004. The results below are an indication of the propellers outboard owners are considering for their next prop..
- Everything You Need to Know About Propellers Mercury Marine Propeller Booklet reduced to a few web pages. Click on tabs at top to turn the pages.
- Info on Chosing a Prop Reynolds Racing and Marine
- Propellers 101 by Turning Point Propellers
- Frequently Asked Questions by Ace Propeller
Propeller Manufacturing Technologies
Propeller Companies in the Courts
The cases below are NOT propeller injury cases. They involve business and intellectual property issues.
- Volvo Duo-Prop v. MerCruiser Bravo Three Patent Case
- PowerTech v. Attwood Case brief by Chamber of Commerce of the U.S.
- Kurz v. Michigan Wheel a well known workers compensation case
Timothy D. Kurz v. Michigan Wheel. No. 208994. Court of Appeals of Michigan. 236 Mich. App. 508; 601 N.W.2d 130; 1999 Mich. App. LEXIS 185.
- Composite Marine Propellers, Inc., v. Van Der Woude, 962 F.2d 1263, 1265 (7th Cir. 1992). A trade secret case involving Comprop. Dismissed on appeal.
Also: Composite Marine Propellers v. Gerbrig Vanderwoude. Civil Action No. 89-2304-V. United States District Court for the District of Kansas. 741 F. Supp. 873; 1990 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 8695.
Also: Composite Marine Propellers v. Greg Van der Woude. Nos. 91-1724 and 91-1813. United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. 962 F.2d 1263; 1992 U.S. App. LEXIS 8794; 22 U.S.P.Q.2D (BNA) 1568. (this reference contains technical and marketing information)
- Prop Scan / Hale Propeller Intellectual Property Cases on propeller scanning/prop repair devices: United States Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit. Ryan Marine Products Pty. Ltd. Plaintiff-Appellant b. Hale Propeller Defendant-Cross Appellants. Nos. 01-1613, 02-1007. June 5, 2002. On Appeal from the United States District Court District of Connecticut, 98- CV-1248 and 98-CV-2128.
Also: United States District Court for the District of Connecticut 98 F. Supp. 2d 260; 2000 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 7468
Also: United States District Court for the District of Connecticut. 151 F. Supp. 2d 183; 2001 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 13898 (Michigan Wheel was a third party in this case to determine jurisdiction of the court). All cases concern U.S. Patent 4,411,073.
- Steven Books b. Marysville Propeller. Court of Appeals of Michigan. 2003 Mich. App. LEXIS 1643. Business relationship turns bad.
- Federal Insurance Company v. Michigan Wheel. No. 66-1467-Civ-CF. United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida.
267 F. Supp. 639; 1967 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 8339. A Florida sales tax case.
- Martec Engineering Corporation v. Michigan Wheel. No. 72-394-FW. United States District Court, Central District of California. 1972 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 10858; 176 U.S.P.Q. (BNA) 343. Patent infringement on a propeller design patent. Probably a sail boat propeller.
- Edward H. Smith v. Johnson Propeller Company. 95-1406. United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. 1996 U.S. App. LEXIS 9846. Patent fight over a regressively pitched prop (U.S. Patent 4,632,636). When certain claims of the patent looked invalid (due to prior art from Mercury Marine) they had agreed to settle, but then later disagreed again.
Also: Edward H. Smith v. Johnson Propeller Company. 97-1318. United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. 1998 U.S. App. LEXIS 4385. (Mercury Marine sold 589 propellers in 1980 and 803 propellers in 1981 having Part No. 48-89848-7 per the court documents). Looks like it was probably a 9 inch dia. 7 inch pitch aluminum 3 blade right handed prop for 1968 and newer 8 spline hub Merc 75 and Merc 110 (7.5 and 11 HP drives). It looks like they may have had four different diameters and four different pitches combining to make a total of 5 different propellers for these models. The prop in question would have been one of the five possible props for those models.
Propeller Safety Issues
Propeller Guard Information Center - our propeller safety site
Save the Manatee.Org
Florida Protected Sea Grass Zone
Propeller Blade Covers
Average Propeller Life
One way to predict propeller sales is to estimate the percentage of existing boats by horsepower class and /or age that replace their propeller each year. We conducted two online polls of "boating enthusiasts" and received these results, when asked what they thought the average life of a propeller was.
We also created a Boat Propeller Life Cycle Chart showing how a propeller "moves through the system" with a new drive, as a spare, when it becomes damaged, etc.
If you have a good estimate for Average Propeller Life and are thinking about calculating how many propellers are sold on the aftermarket each year you may be looking for current outboard sales data and historical population data. The links below are helpful in finding that information. Do not forget things are more complex than just dividing the population by average life. Spare propellers, upgrades to stainless, twin drives, use of kicker motors, repower of boats, drive scrappage rates, plastic props on small drives, etc. make propeller unit sales estimation challenging.
We also ran a couple polls asking outboard owners (by horsepower class) what propeller they might purchase next by manufacturer and material (AL or SS, etc).
Additional information for those estimating propeller life:
Mercury Marine / Brunswick Full Coverage
Mercury Marine Propellers
Selecting Mercury Marine Propellers
Mercury Propeller News & Plant Tours
Mercury Marine Environmental Reports
Environmental reports can sometimes be used to gain some understanding of the processes used and production volumes..
- EPA Facility Detail Report for Mercury Marine FDL
combined report for Plants 3,4,10,12,15,17,98 (98 is the prop plant)
- Mercury Marine Air Permits from the state of Wisconsin. Number 00-RV-68 is the Lost Foam Plant (Mercury Castings Facility used for casting drives)
Brunswick Business Operations
Brunswick purchase of the two large marine parts operations, Land 'N' Sea and Attwood, has made them a more formidle parts (and propellers) operation. Some builders, dealers and retailers prefer to deal with a "one stop shop" operation that has all their needs. Brunswick is certainly becoming that.
Brunswick's WDI (Web Den Interactive) group has released a large software program for free that could cost thousands of dollars on the open market. By making its business integration software (BIE) open source (free), Brunswick stands to gain market share from many parts operations (including propellers) because it is now easier for dealers and shops to keep track of inventory, order parts, etc.
Brunswick Analyst Report by RBCC, includes drive market share information
Mercury Marine Propeller Marketing Job Opening has since been filled. Provides some info on their operation.
Michigan Wheel Full Coverage
Michigan Wheel Propellers
Hall & Stavert Canadian division of Michigan Wheel
Hale MRI represented by Michigan Wheel
Michigan Wheel Tour report 25 Feb 1997. Another report of same tour
Michigan Wheel Environmental & Regulatory Reports
Environmental and Regulatory Reports can sometimes be used to gain an understanding of the processes used and production volumes.
Prop Repair Shop Association
Prop Shop Tools and Pitch Blocks
Prop Repair Shops - most also sell / retail propellers
Propeller Repair Scanning Devices
- Hale Propeller MRI 3D propeller scan / analysis device for prop repair. Represented in North America by Michigan Wheel
- Prop Scan computer 3D propeller scan /analysis device for prop repair
- Performance Propellers large Australian Prop Shop using PropScan
- Coastal Prop provides links to several PropScan articles
The new propeller scanning devices often cite these standards and how they can measure / produce propellers that excede them. The standards appear to generally apply to larger propellers, not to small recreational boat props.