Updated October 25, 2020 by Christopher Thomas

The 10 Best Boat Propellers

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This wiki has been updated 7 times since it was first published in February of 2019. There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to boat propellers. Having the right fit for your vessel is integral to ensuring you get the most out of your motor. Most times, the factory-installed model isn't ideal, and installing an after-market option can mean a noticeable increase in acceleration and top speed. Our guide will help you sift through the ocean of choices to find the perfect match. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki. If you'd like to contribute your own research to the Wiki, please get started by reviewing this introductory video.

1. Mercury Marine Spitfire

2. Mercury Marine Revolution 4

3. Mercury Marine Black Max

Editor's Notes

October 21, 2020:

Although all of the propellers in our previous list were high quality at the time of publication, we have added the latest model of the Motorguide Machete III as it is superior and more reasonably priced than its predecessor. This option is seven years newer, and its plastic construction is more than strong enough for a small electric trolling motor.

The Quicksilver Nemesis was added to the list to add a reasonably priced, high-torque option for boaters who want to tow anyone at speed, as acceleration is an important consideration, especially for waterskiing and parascending, when it can be unsafe to sacrifice a high top-speed for a quick start or holeshot.

May 10, 2019:

The key thing to choosing the right propeller for your powerboat is finding the sweet spot between your engine's wide-open throttle operating range (measured in rpm) and the pitch of a propeller. The pitch is how far (in inches) the propeller moves in one revolution.

If your boat's rpm gauge matches the WOT operating range at WOT and neutral trim, it means you are properly propped. If you are over-revving, it means you should move up in pitch and vice versa. In either case, your motor is not delivering its maximum horsepower and a propeller replacement is in order.

Most propellers are available in two-inch pitch increments, which is typically enough to find the sweet spot. For those who want to perfectly tune their rig's performance, the Mercury Marine Enertia Eco is available in one-inch pitch increments.

Diameter is also a spec to consider. Those on the lower end, such as the Mercury Marine Spitfire, are ideal for smaller boats or high-performance speed boats. The larger the diameter, the more thrust you will get, at the cost of more drag. Large diameter models, like the Solas Rubex L3, are excellent choices for larger boats with heavier loads.

Special Honors

Powertech OFS4 Smooth and efficient -- though expensive -- this propeller has a thru-hub exhaust system, which allows emissions to pass through a specially designed barrel instead of coming into contact with the blades. In larger boats, this can help increase top speed and avoid blade corrosion. ptpropeller.com

4. Mercury Marine Enertia

5. Michigan Wheel Apollo XHS

6. Turning Point Hustler

7. Turning Point Express Mach3

8. Quicksilver Nemesis

9. Solas Rubex L3

10. Motorguide Machete III


Christopher Thomas
Last updated on October 25, 2020 by Christopher Thomas

Building PCs, remodeling, and cooking since he was young, quasi-renowned trumpeter Christopher Thomas traveled the USA performing at and organizing shows from an early age. His work experiences led him to open a catering company, eventually becoming a sous chef in several fine LA restaurants. He enjoys all sorts of barely necessary gadgets, specialty computing, cutting-edge video games, and modern social policy. He has given talks on debunking pseudoscience, the Dunning-Kruger effect, culinary technique, and traveling. After two decades of product and market research, Chris has a keen sense of what people want to know and how to explain it clearly. He delights in parsing complex subjects for anyone who will listen -- because teaching is the best way to ensure that you understand things yourself.


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