Wild Country Running

Longest running airboat discussion on the internet.
Post Reply
TundraOne
Southern Airboat Member
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Mar 06, 2019 9:40 am

Wild Country Running

Post by TundraOne »

Good day Gentlemen: As this is my first post on this form forgive me any mistakes. As I am new to Airboats and don't know the first thing about them so for give me again. Here's what I want to do let me know if there's a airboat that can do it.

This will be done in the high artic so very little help near by, must be dependable.
Gas is a real stupid price up in Canada and double stupid way up north.
Run a thousand miles on one tank of gas. How big a tank ?
That's why the long range as it's also scarce.
Carry two people.
Camping gear and food for 3 to 4 days.
Survival gear etc...
Run at 40 mph or so.
Will be 99% water running in at least 5 ft or deeper.
Is there such a craft or should I be looking at something different.
I figure you Southern boys who run these craft all day long should have a few thoughts.
Any help is welcome.

flcracker9
Site Supporter - III
Site Supporter - III
Posts: 538
Joined: Mon Aug 11, 2014 10:05 pm
Location: Loxahatchee

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by flcracker9 »

Problem as you probably aware, is the range (fuel). It would take probably a 15' - 18' boat to carry your load (not including fuel). You would definately need car motor/gearbox combo. The car motor guys will chime in (my boat is a small aircraft powered boat), but I'm guessing you would need at least a 200 gal fuel tank, probably more?
12' Open Palm Beach, IO-0470-L 260hp, 72" NGQ

unforgiven11B
Site Supporter - IV
Site Supporter - IV
Posts: 582
Joined: Sat May 26, 2012 9:59 am

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by unforgiven11B »

1000 miles is going to be the issue. 2x 80 gal fuel tanks will weigh approximately 1280 lbs in liquid fuel alone and I’m not sure that is enough. It would take a 15-18’ boat to just haul the dang fuel let alone 2 adults and camping gear , plus self recovery equipment as you’re as remote as they come.

User avatar
OneBFC
Southern Airboat Member
Posts: 644
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2012 1:04 am

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by OneBFC »

well that's an interesting problem to solve. I think we don't have enough of the variables to confidently prevent you from needing an expensive rescue or potential death.

First off why do you want to run an airboat if it's going to be 5ft deep water? If you only need overland capability briefly or rarely, perhaps a secondary ATV style vehicle would be wiser to bring along in a normal "boat".

Second, fuel economy at 40mph in a boat the size you would need is going to be poor at best. expect anywhere from 1.5mpg to 3mpg at best. Drop your speed to 30mph and it will go up considerably though if the boat will still plane properly. Also, head winds will wreck your fuel econ on an airboat even more.

Third, is 1000 miles the actual distance you need to travel or does it include some "oops" mileage as well? If that's just point a to b to a mileage I would factor in a health 30% or more given your Intended operating area and lack of basic services.

Fourth, determine your all in load weight. Humans, gear, food, everything....then add 200lbs on top of that for "oops I forgot that". Once you have the total load you can then determine what size hull you will need to safely carry that weight in "deep" water. 5ft is deep water to an airboat.

Sixth, ever try to run a flat bottom boat in anything over 1ft waves with a low period of 5s or so? Well, just imagine how bad it's going to be in your airboat if the waves get up yo 3+ft or more. You will spend 100% of your running time on a half plane and fuel economy will invert to gallons per mile. On top of that, you won't have any teeth or spine left after the beating your going to get. Boat will likely suffer as well.

Lastly, to maximize reliability you would want a large displacement engine that produces a low specific power at low RPM. That's pretty much how AC engines operate but they don't product enough power for the weight your going to need to carry so your into automotive or industrial engines. Weight is your enemy so likely automotive is your best bet. We can't recommend a power level without knowing the total load so I can't comment on an engine option more specifically.

Sounds like a cool run to go on. Consider my questions and perhaps you can get some more detailed replies if you answer them.

Best of luck!
-Russ
-----------------------------------
The only thing stopping you is FEAR
400+hp Ecotec, 12x7.6 DBDO, 80" 3B Maximus, 2.3 OX,85+mph, water = purely optional
Life begins at 2 BAR, Just a good ole boy

User avatar
Slidin Gator
Site Supporter - IV
Site Supporter - IV
Posts: 963
Joined: Sat Feb 03, 2018 11:33 pm
Location: Jupiter Farms, Florida

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by Slidin Gator »

For starters there is no way I would consider this plan without 2 boats, each of them capable of hauling all people and gear required to complete the trip, or at least get everybody home.

As for deepwater, we avoid it if at all possible. The ideal condition is 1 foot of water or less, the shallower the better. 1 inch (or 1 mm, pick your system) deep is best for maximum mileage. I would guess that frozen Tundra would be pretty good for mileage too. Anything but hot sticky clover is better than 5 foot deep water for mileage.

If it’s 990 miles of 5 foot water and 10 miles of tundra to run, I would come up with an outboard boat with wheels to drive the 10 miles (or ski’s to drag it with a snowmobile).

Sounds like a good place for a pack of sled dogs or a bush plane to me. Otherwise 1000 miles might require a few trips to stage fuel.
I still think I-10 is the Mason Dixon line.
2013 Mike Stossel Boats, 13' x 7' deck over, IO-540, 74" NGQ less winglets.

User avatar
Slidin Gator
Site Supporter - IV
Site Supporter - IV
Posts: 963
Joined: Sat Feb 03, 2018 11:33 pm
Location: Jupiter Farms, Florida

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by Slidin Gator »

OneBFC wrote:Lastly, to maximize reliability you would want a large displacement engine that produces a low specific power at low RPM. That's pretty much how AC engines operate...
I can’t believe I just read this! :slap:

Sorry BFC, but I’m gonna have to hang onto this quote. :stirpot:
I still think I-10 is the Mason Dixon line.
2013 Mike Stossel Boats, 13' x 7' deck over, IO-540, 74" NGQ less winglets.

AirHog
Site Supporter - V
Site Supporter - V
Posts: 355
Joined: Wed Jul 28, 2010 5:49 pm
Location: Orlando & Hernando Florida

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by AirHog »

I have a buddy that hunts in Alaska with an Airboat... he has a 4 stroke kicker that pushes his boat in deep water and when he needs the push of an Airboat he fires up the 502 Chevy... the kicker motor is a 30 hp.... yes it is slow but the kicker hardly burns fuel.... he drops off 55 gal drums going up stream.... marks the GPS location... and transfers fuel back onto the boat on the way back.... so he doesn’t carry the weight both ways.... saw a video of the moose he took... impressive... he left the Airboat idling and the wind put thousands of black flies in the water so the fish went crasy and he killed the fish also.

Maybe this strategy would get you the distance... In Airboat mode My guess is 2 mpg... in kicker mode my guess is 9 mpg or better... at fast idle..

Good Luck
AirHog
Bad decisions make good stories!
Citrus County Airboat Alliance Member

User avatar
OneBFC
Southern Airboat Member
Posts: 644
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2012 1:04 am

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by OneBFC »

Slidin Gator wrote:
OneBFC wrote:Lastly, to maximize reliability you would want a large displacement engine that produces a low specific power at low RPM. That's pretty much how AC engines operate...
I can’t believe I just read this! :slap:

Sorry BFC, but I’m gonna have to hang onto this quote. :stirpot:
haha, I have never said anything to the contrary so go ahead and hang onto it :lol:

Right tool for the job is always what I recommend!
-Russ
-----------------------------------
The only thing stopping you is FEAR
400+hp Ecotec, 12x7.6 DBDO, 80" 3B Maximus, 2.3 OX,85+mph, water = purely optional
Life begins at 2 BAR, Just a good ole boy

User avatar
Slidin Gator
Site Supporter - IV
Site Supporter - IV
Posts: 963
Joined: Sat Feb 03, 2018 11:33 pm
Location: Jupiter Farms, Florida

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by Slidin Gator »

AirHog wrote:I have a buddy that hunts in Alaska with an Airboat... he has a 4 stroke kicker that pushes his boat in deep water and when he needs the push of an Airboat he fires up the 502 Chevy... the kicker motor is a 30 hp.... yes it is slow but the kicker hardly burns fuel....
AirHog
Airhog has the idea. I was thinking along this line. I used to have a 20 foot Aquasport with a 1986 150 Evinrude. It had 3 Carbs and burned fuel like the 60’s. Boat had a 60 gallon tank. I added an 80 gallon deck tank on the deck and that would let me run from Marathon until we saw Cuba and start fishing our way back, all of 90 miles.

Then I added a 15 Hp Johnson with a wide blade. Burned 10 gallons to get to the reef and then crank up the kicker to troll to Cuba on 10 more. The other 120 gallons would let me fish the Bahamas bank etc. until it was time to fire the fuel hog up and head back to Florida.

We called it the Cuban Drift trip.
I still think I-10 is the Mason Dixon line.
2013 Mike Stossel Boats, 13' x 7' deck over, IO-540, 74" NGQ less winglets.

TundraOne
Southern Airboat Member
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Mar 06, 2019 9:40 am

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by TundraOne »

Kind of what I was expecting for replies. Thanks for the info, looks like the airboat is more for shorter trips and getting in and out of areas where a regular boat just won't do. Not the right tool for this job. Some replies talk about a regular boat, this may be my route i will have to travel. You were all great for fast replies and good info. Thanks.

User avatar
lilly-Pad
Site Supporter - I
Site Supporter - I
Posts: 651
Joined: Sun Oct 05, 2014 11:21 am
Location: Homestead Fl

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by lilly-Pad »

Slidin Gator wrote:
OneBFC wrote:Lastly, to maximize reliability you would want a large displacement engine that produces a low specific power at low RPM. That's pretty much how AC engines operate...
I can’t believe I just read this! :slap:

Sorry BFC, but I’m gonna have to hang onto this quote. :stirpot:
:stirpot: :D :cheers: if only blk water could see this
12 ft Don Davis / 0470 conv / 68 NGQ , A.A.O.F member

Best laid plans of mice and men, wont always get you laid.............

User avatar
OneBFC
Southern Airboat Member
Posts: 644
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2012 1:04 am

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by OneBFC »

lilly-Pad wrote:
Slidin Gator wrote:
OneBFC wrote:Lastly, to maximize reliability you would want a large displacement engine that produces a low specific power at low RPM. That's pretty much how AC engines operate...
I can’t believe I just read this! :slap:

Sorry BFC, but I’m gonna have to hang onto this quote. :stirpot:
:stirpot: :D :cheers: if only blk water could see this
You guys are confused about my previous posts here I think! Just because I run a small displacement engine with a high specific output doesn't mean I recommend that platform for every purpose. Never said that, never will. :D

All good, have your fun. But, I've mainly preached the importance of power vs torque in those conversations and nothing more! :angel4: :usa:

Low specific output engines are always more reliable than High specific output engines as long as all of the supporting engine technology is the same between the two. It's just important to realise when you actually need and benefit from the added reliability. Someone going to one of the poles with any hope of help 24+ hours away at best while floating in 33degree water really needs the most reliability possible. Someone going to cruise the marsh a few days a month can live with a solution that performs just as well or better and still lasts them 10 years or more at 10% of the cost to replace it when it does eventually where out.

OP, though we didn't get to hear more details about your trip I wish you well on your journey. Safe travels! :thumbleft:
-Russ
-----------------------------------
The only thing stopping you is FEAR
400+hp Ecotec, 12x7.6 DBDO, 80" 3B Maximus, 2.3 OX,85+mph, water = purely optional
Life begins at 2 BAR, Just a good ole boy

CarMotorBarge
Site Supporter - I
Site Supporter - I
Posts: 960
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2011 8:32 pm
Location: Lake Harney Woods

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by CarMotorBarge »

Yep, A/C motors burn a bunch of fuel and produce very little HSP. Only good thing about them is the AV gas smells good, but it sure is expensive.
14x7.5 Al David hull with 14 inch transom
419 CI Horsepower Barn LS3 with 2.88 Ox Box swinging 4 blade 83.5" R
GTO Rigging and B&S Tilt Trailer

User avatar
kwanjangnihm
Site Supporter - IV
Site Supporter - IV
Posts: 2100
Joined: Sat Mar 30, 2013 8:23 pm
Location: Bartow FL

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by kwanjangnihm »

CarMotorBarge wrote: Only good thing about them is the AV gas smells good
the sweet smell of the lead dog :salute: :toothy7: :slap: :lol: :rebel:
He'll cut your throat, baby, stick you in the back, drive off in your Cadillac.
He's more trouble than you think, he'll kill your sugar, leave you in the drink.

Lwells
Southern Airboat Member
Posts: 331
Joined: Sat Nov 15, 2014 9:18 pm
Location: okeechobee

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by Lwells »

I think this would be an interesting project for a redneck or crazy mechanic. LOL With all the new 4 and 6 cylinder auto engines then this MIGHT be a possibility. Some of these new engines are high HP High Mileage engines and with the right setup might be a possibility . It would be interesting and could change the way airboats are setup in different area's.

dave1971
Southern Airboat Member
Posts: 98
Joined: Tue Oct 28, 2014 8:35 pm

Re: Wild Country Running

Post by dave1971 »

get a BUSH PLANE!

Post Reply

Return to “Airboat Talk”