Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

A general, non-powerplant specific, discussion on airboat technology, ie., hulls, rigging, polymer, etc..
White Hawk
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Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby White Hawk » Wed Jul 11, 2018 8:45 am

What set up will allow an operator to enjoy a cruise speed in the 50's or even better 60's without burning up the power plant. I have been airboating for over twenty years in South Florida, I know some builders who like to ride fast. Free running hull, Hull Length, Deck Over, Prop type, Prop SIze, Tip Speed, Motor Angle, Etc..... I would like to put together a 14' free riding sled and slide close to 60 Mph all day long..... :florida: I know this is a formula, and I know it is out there....... Help... :angel4:

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John Fenner
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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby John Fenner » Wed Jul 11, 2018 10:45 am

Super light hull, set correctly, super light and simple rigging, a strong and big propped engine set up for what it's designed for. A PE 60 built up tight on the right hull will cruise 50/60 mph and sip fuel,,,, weight vs hp.
I never finish anyth,,,.

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby White Hawk » Wed Jul 11, 2018 10:23 pm

So far my formula is deck over sled. Inline seating, one up top triple bench below. 600 plus hp light weight motor. Gearbox, 9 blade long prop, and motor set on a properly angled engine stand. Slick bottom on aircraft aluminum riveted hull.

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John Fenner
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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby John Fenner » Thu Jul 12, 2018 11:31 am

Good combination, I'd suggest a 7'6"×13' or 13'6" .090" bottom with .050" decks, 28" grassrake. Edit: saw your quote for 14"
I never finish anyth,,,.

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby White Hawk » Fri Jul 13, 2018 7:51 am

John Fenner wrote:Good combination, I'd suggest a 7'6"×13' or 13'6" .090" bottom with .050" decks, 28" grassrake. Edit: saw your quote for 14"
I'm staying under 14'. Cruise speed will go down with every inch of transom dragging.

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby John Fenner » Fri Jul 13, 2018 8:36 am

Not if it is built correctly
I never finish anyth,,,.

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby Rich Andrews » Fri Jul 13, 2018 10:25 am

crusing the glades at 60? really
I'll have my Manatee burger medium please...just say NObama

14x8 deckover FELBER 397ci.. HP ???..just stay back!!

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby White Hawk » Fri Jul 13, 2018 11:55 am

I Like to ride. I know 30-40 Mph is the average cruise speed. Many folks are concerned with running their boat like it is a small bulldozer,or even a drag racer, I want to ride and cover some ground. 50 slow cruise - 60 fast cruise is not asking for too much. I'm running 450HP now and at 4000 RPM i'm the low 40's, just not acceptable. I had a 180 wide deck on an old Don Davis and ran at 40 MPH all day. Now with twice the HP I feel like i''m walking backward. On any given ride I may cover 70 to 100 miles. South Glades easy 90 mile ride, Clewiston-Lakeport-Fisheating Creek easy 90 mile Ride, St. Johns easy 90 Mile ride I could go on. I am not just theorizing, I just want to make sure the sled I have built can cruise at 60 and not burn up in the process. 60 Really!

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby White Hawk » Fri Jul 13, 2018 11:58 am

Rich Andrews wrote:crusing the glades at 60? really
I see a description of your sled, it sounds like it should have a nice cruise, what cruise speed are you getting out of your ride?

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John Fenner
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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby John Fenner » Fri Jul 13, 2018 12:02 pm

Definitely doable, I was apprentice for Don Davis @ 16 years of age, 28 years worked for him, I'm building hulls at my home shop, booked through October.
I never finish anyth,,,.

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby Rich Andrews » Fri Jul 13, 2018 12:37 pm

30mph max cruise unless im gliding over real shallow waters, but my fast days are over
I'll have my Manatee burger medium please...just say NObama

14x8 deckover FELBER 397ci.. HP ???..just stay back!!

LOHA is AHOL backwards

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby CarMotorBarge » Fri Jul 13, 2018 7:23 pm

White Hawk wrote:I Like to ride. I know 30-40 Mph is the average cruise speed. Many folks are concerned with running their boat like it is a small bulldozer,or even a drag racer, I want to ride and cover some ground. 50 slow cruise - 60 fast cruise is not asking for too much. I'm running 450HP now and at 4000 RPM i'm the low 40's, just not acceptable. I had a 180 wide deck on an old Don Davis and ran at 40 MPH all day. Now with twice the HP I feel like i''m walking backward. On any given ride I may cover 70 to 100 miles. South Glades easy 90 mile ride, Clewiston-Lakeport-Fisheating Creek easy 90 mile Ride, St. Johns easy 90 Mile ride I could go on. I am not just theorizing, I just want to make sure the sled I have built can cruise at 60 and not burn up in the process. 60 Really!


What type of engine are you planning to use?
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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby White Hawk » Mon Jul 16, 2018 9:09 am

CarMotorBarge wrote:
White Hawk wrote:I Like to ride. I know 30-40 Mph is the average cruise speed. Many folks are concerned with running their boat like it is a small bulldozer,or even a drag racer, I want to ride and cover some ground. 50 slow cruise - 60 fast cruise is not asking for too much. I'm running 450HP now and at 4000 RPM i'm the low 40's, just not acceptable. I had a 180 wide deck on an old Don Davis and ran at 40 MPH all day. Now with twice the HP I feel like i''m walking backward. On any given ride I may cover 70 to 100 miles. South Glades easy 90 mile ride, Clewiston-Lakeport-Fisheating Creek easy 90 mile Ride, St. Johns easy 90 Mile ride I could go on. I am not just theorizing, I just want to make sure the sled I have built can cruise at 60 and not burn up in the process. 60 Really!


What type of engine are you planning to use?


I have been planning on a Water Thunder 600+ Hp Motor. I've considered a variety of SBC and BBC as well as AC. I read the description of the boat you are running and I have got to ask what your cruise speed is. Can you run a constant 50-60 MPH without burning up the motor? I understand what I'm looking for can be attained by a combination of the right Hull, Rigging, Weight, Motor, Prop, all set up in the right configuration. Right now i'm running a built 383 in the 450 hp range (Steel Block), I understand it will never do what I want it to do, its like a drag racing bulldozer, I really want a machine to cover some ground with built for riding fast for a long period of time. I'm looking for motor suggestions, and gear ratio suggestions.

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby mojoe » Mon Jul 16, 2018 12:26 pm

ladyblackwater wrote:60 mph is sure not a cruise for an airboat no matter how you look at it. I'm not saying it can't be done. I'm saying it isn't safe. Good luck in your adventure.


X2

Anywhere shallow enough (in Florida) to lend itself to the operation of an airboat, it will have vegetation and/or turns that limit visibility along with dynamic hazards. Combine that lack of visibility with a machine with a giant meat grinder on the back going 60mph with no brakes and you have a recepie for disaster. Please post when and where you will be riding so I can make sure my family and I are not there!!


Just wondering: What distance do you think an airboat traveling @ 60mph (88’/second) must cover before it has the ability to move itself over one boat width?

In a word problem: If this guy is traveling at 60mph in his sweet airboat and goes over vegetation to find a line of kayakers directly in his path. Each kayak is 10’ long paddling 5’ apart, how many kayakers will die before he is able to turn his boat?

I know the ignorant answer is some negative comment about kayakers.... unless one of them is you child on a scout trip.

Any reasonable person can see what I’m getting at here. Just because you can does not mean you should. If we cannot regulate ourselves reasonably our way, rest assured, they (anti-airboaters) will regulate us THEIR way.
Airboating is like marriage: There are unlimited ways a person can be right, and somehow still be wrong at the same time!!

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby John Fenner » Mon Jul 16, 2018 12:30 pm

8.6:1 GSIO 540, blueprinted cam advanced 10° with a 78 to 80" prop on a 7'x13'6" proper built hull will suit your needs!!
I never finish anyth,,,.

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby Slidin Gator » Mon Jul 16, 2018 7:50 pm

In 1974 my dad bought a Buick Regal with all the crappy emissions controls they had back then. In 1975 he bought a book called "How Not To Disable Your Emissions Controls" with step by step instructions of what you should not do.

Do not do the following:

White Hawk wrote:I have been planning on a Water Thunder 600+ Hp Motor. I've considered a variety of SBC and BBC as well as AC.

understand what I'm looking for can be attained by a combination of the right Hull, Rigging, Weight, Motor, Prop, all set up in the right configuration. Right now i'm running a built 383 in the 450 hp range (Steel Block), I understand it will never do what I want it to do, its like a drag racing bulldozer, I really want a machine to cover some ground with built for riding fast for a long period of time. I'm looking for motor suggestions, and gear ratio suggestions.


98 mph is the fastest I have ever been, due west in area 2 covering pretty much half of the area in a matter of minutes. Had to stop so we didn't fly across the canal and 27. That was 1997, me playing navigator in the back seat with a new handheld GPS hoping that the throttle cable didn't break, otherwise the nose would lift and away we go. Mark that one off the bucket list, it would be nice to say 100, but not quite. I have no interest in that ride again, boat was probably 3-4 feet off the water riding the tops of the thick saw grass.

260 Hp O-540 Lycoming running a 6 blade prop that sounded like a herd of mad bees. Hull was 12 foot palm beach style, not even optimum for high speed.

It's all in the prop selection and set up to run boat loose without hop. You can get what you are after with an AV engine just fine if you get the airflow to keep it cool.

I disagree that a GSIO is the right answer, aviation gear drives and big props are for hauling loads and pushing ground. High speed calls for a smaller prop putting more power into less air to create higher velocity output over a smaller area. Basically a smaller prop at max RPM rating with a whole bunch of small blades (like you said, 9 blade prop, but forget the long part).

Depending on your present set up, a smaller prop and less gear may get you closer to your goal without too much coin.

I highly recommend that you don't do any of this.
I grew up thinking that I-10 was the Mason Dixon line.
1986 Airboat Engineering Inc., 14' Marsh Master. Refreshed narrow deck, SV O-540. A Bob Stossel original, still running strong.

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby CarMotorBarge » Mon Jul 16, 2018 7:53 pm

Yes, I can run 50 to 60 MPH without burning up the motor. I even have poly. Dave builds a great motor. Tell him what you plan to do and he will point you in the proper direction. Expect to run 4,000 RPMs to maintain 60 MPH. This is assuming slick bottom with a free light hull and minimum wind drag. Don't go cheap on the valve train and make sure you have a good tune. LS motors are hard to beat.
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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby White Hawk » Thu Jul 19, 2018 8:01 am

CarMotorBarge wrote:Yes, I can run 50 to 60 MPH without burning up the motor. I even have poly. Dave builds a great motor. Tell him what you plan to do and he will point you in the proper direction. Expect to run 4,000 RPMs to maintain 60 MPH. This is assuming slick bottom with a free light hull and minimum wind drag. Don't go cheap on the valve train and make sure you have a good tune. LS motors are hard to beat.

Right now I am running in the low 40's pushing 4000 RPM. I was leaning towards slick bottom, but I may miss my poly. If you run your sled 3000-3600 RPM are you close to 40 MPH?

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby White Hawk » Thu Jul 19, 2018 8:41 am

mojoe wrote:
ladyblackwater wrote:60 mph is sure not a cruise for an airboat no matter how you look at it. I'm not saying it can't be done. I'm saying it isn't safe. Good luck in your adventure.


X2

Anywhere shallow enough (in Florida) to lend itself to the operation of an airboat, it will have vegetation and/or turns that limit visibility along with dynamic hazards. Combine that lack of visibility with a machine with a giant meat grinder on the back going 60mph with no brakes and you have a recepie for disaster. Please post when and where you will be riding so I can make sure my family and I are not there!!


Just wondering: What distance do you think an airboat traveling @ 60mph (88’/second) must cover before it has the ability to move itself over one boat width?

In a word problem: If this guy is traveling at 60mph in his sweet airboat and goes over vegetation to find a line of kayakers directly in his path. Each kayak is 10’ long paddling 5’ apart, how many kayakers will die before he is able to turn his boat?

I know the ignorant answer is some negative comment about kayakers.... unless one of them is you child on a scout trip.

Any reasonable person can see what I’m getting at here. Just because you can does not mean you should. If we cannot regulate ourselves reasonably our way, rest assured, they (anti-airboaters) will regulate us THEIR way.

Let me say, I am a very safe operator, I have owned and operated boats for 35 years, I have a 100 Ton Captains License, I have delivered boats around the globe, and I have been operating airboats for 23 years, I have owned riveted sleds, welded deep water hulls, fiberglass hulls, both AC and CM power plants, a variety of gear boxes, and an assortment of rigging, had my HP range from 200 to 500 and none have had a cruise speed 50-60 Mph. I ride slow, barley on a plane if the visibility is obstructed by vegetation. I make sure I am going slow enough to avoid Kayaks, Airboats, Hikers, Animals and slow means barley on a plane. I slow and Idle past stationary and or slow moving vessels. However, when I am crossing the Glades, or faced with a long stretch of river I like to open up and move. When you are driving a car in front of a school the speed limit is 15, residential 30, highway 70. If you run 60 to 100 miles in a day you will come across plenty of wide open trails. I just ran a trail from I75 to Holliday Park as wide as a 5 lane highway and as straight as an arrow, you may like to put along at 20 Mph on a wide open trail, that's just not my cup of tea! A boat with a cruise speed of 50-60 mph will do just fine running 20-30 mph, and the motor will last longer. I put my boat in at the closest ramp so I can ride as far as possibly by boat, many people put in close to their destination
This topic is directed towards professionals for the purpose of designing and building a highly efficient, durable, performance machine. I know from experience that there are builders out there that know how to design and build sleds that will do exactly what i'm asking about, I know that I do not, if I did I would already have this vessel. I do not want to invest a good chunk of change and not meet my goals.

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby mojoe » Thu Jul 19, 2018 9:51 am

I am not a “professional” like those whom you say you have directed this toward. I am though, a person with good common sense and a ton of experience around every type of boat that is common in Florida.

I have never met you, but I believe you are an experienced and safe driver. That is not the problem.

Airboats are inherently unsafe at those speeds. The flat “(ish) bottom, the angle of thrust, the lack of steerage in the event of a loss of power, the short and wide footprint of the bottom, airboats are just not a safe choice at those speeds.

There are boats designed to cruise “safely” at 60+. They are aerodynamic and hydrodynamic. They have keels, chines, a direction of thrust very close to the centerline of the hull, a skeg that steers and creates drag with or without power ... etc. The type of hull that can safely travel at 60+ mph for prolonged periods of time would not perform wort a crap as an airboat.

All boats are trade offs. If you want that kind of cruise speed and safety, you gotta get rid of the “air” part or the safety part.

Do I believe that someone can make you an airboat that cruises at that speed fairly reliably. Yes.

Safely: No!!
Airboating is like marriage: There are unlimited ways a person can be right, and somehow still be wrong at the same time!!

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby pierson skunkape » Thu Jul 19, 2018 10:20 am

Wow I don't even know where to start if this cat wants to cruise at 60 he must be talking about wide open throttle at 80 miles per hour...WOW.... shallow water in the Glades that thing could Coast a half a mile before I laid back in the water.... I've had quite a few close calls in the Citrus County area Potts preserve to be exact and I can't imagine anybody going 40 miles an hour around that area... I think I'll be like the poster in Davie Florida if this damn machine ever comes to light make sure you posted the day before you ride I'll make sure I don't go down to Old Glory camp that weekend... whoever does the build make sure they put a nice aluminum casket in there for you cuz they're going to bury you in that swamp rocket if they can find you :stirpot: :rebel: :slap: :florida: if you have grandkids which I don't think you sound old enough to have grandchildren leave him at home or for Christ sake somebody more responsible than yourself pretty much anybody in your neighborhood I would assume

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby White Hawk » Thu Jul 19, 2018 12:07 pm

I didn't realize how many airboaters disapprove of a well built sled with good hp. The last time I was on the water it seemed like everyone was trying to milk every lady drop of usable power. Why on earth did we start making warp drive props, tuning 0540's and super charging them? What insane person came up with aluminum block high hp car motors? Are you serious? Almost all 6 cillinder AC sleds are fast and light enough to do cartwheels if left wide open. I'm sure if I floored my Pick up truck it would travel at an un safe speed, but it rides nice at cruise. This is a Technical topic posted under Tech. How many topics are about gear ratio to engine rpm, is this so they can go slower? How about hull type, or hull design are these topics to go slower? What about prop choice, do you guys run wood props on slow motors for safety reasons. I would love to hear some positive input, about hulls, cages,power plants, motor elevation and degree relation to the stringers, water breaks, rudders, bottom treatments, not canoes, kayaks, and disapproval of building a well tuned sled with a cool running motor and horse power on reserve...... I'd rather die on my feet than to live on my knees.....

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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby OneBFC » Thu Jul 19, 2018 1:40 pm

Well, your original post and a few follow ups basically ask how to haul ass for long distances and a few people rightfully said it's not that hard to do but its darn sure not safe.

You may not want to hear that 60+mph isn't safe, but, reality and physics don't care about that.

Cruising at "high speed" boils down to hull and aerodynamic drag (mostly hull). Weight will put more hull in the water and create drag, thus why "light and free hull" is the key ingredient.

Power isn't really needed to go fast unless you want a heavy boat to do it in. Then, you need lots of power and fuel. cruising 60mph in a heavy boat will be slurping down 20+ gallons per hour pretty easily.

good luck carrying 100 gallons of fuel to ride 4 or 5 hours?

Anyway, most people want the higher power for things like acceleration, dry running, load carrying capacity and "reserve" so the engine isn't operating at close to max power all the time.

Not so they can cruise 60+ mph for long periods of time.

So, build a 2 person 13ft sled with slick bottom and have 300hp or so and you can cruise 60mph all you like.

you will be riding alone a lot maybe.

My little 2000lb ecoturd boat "cruised" 45mph at 3800rpm with a max rpm of 5200 with a 80 inch 4 blade falcon behind a 2.3 Ox for a little while.

going fast isn't some mysterious formula really and I doubt you will get a manufacturer to respond publicly to your thread for liability reasons.

I wish you luck in your quest. Please keep in mind, like motorcycles, it's not you that gets you killed, it's the person that didn't see you or expect you to be traveling so fast.

:salute:



White Hawk wrote:I didn't realize how many airboaters disapprove of a well built sled with good hp. The last time I was on the water it seemed like everyone was trying to milk every lady drop of usable power. Why on earth did we start making warp drive props, tuning 0540's and super charging them? What insane person came up with aluminum block high hp car motors? Are you serious? Almost all 6 cillinder AC sleds are fast and light enough to do cartwheels if left wide open. I'm sure if I floored my Pick up truck it would travel at an un safe speed, but it rides nice at cruise. This is a Technical topic posted under Tech. How many topics are about gear ratio to engine rpm, is this so they can go slower? How about hull type, or hull design are these topics to go slower? What about prop choice, do you guys run wood props on slow motors for safety reasons. I would love to hear some positive input, about hulls, cages,power plants, motor elevation and degree relation to the stringers, water breaks, rudders, bottom treatments, not canoes, kayaks, and disapproval of building a well tuned sled with a cool running motor and horse power on reserve...... I'd rather die on my feet than to live on my knees.....
-Russ
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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby loudmouse » Thu Jul 19, 2018 2:46 pm

My boat will cruz at 50 or 60 and maybe even faster but very few places I ride is it open enough for that speed. On plane 23-25 mph 2400 rpm 30-32mph 28-2900 rpm 45-50mph 36-3700rpms 60mph 4200 rpms best I can remember. My combo works great for a 15ft heavy deckover. When trail ride I prefer to just be on a plane slippn along enjoyn a smooth quiet ride.
15' Alumitech deckover LSX TT Oxbox 84" JX 4-blade
Gas required Water optional :dontknow:
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Re: Higher Cruise Speed! Need Help From The Pros....

Postby White Hawk » Thu Jul 19, 2018 3:26 pm

I have to say this is pretty disgusting my topic went from asking professionals about technical advice so that I may employ professionals to build a precision machine to shame on you for wanting a fast boat I'll kill you if I see you going fast you're right you proved your own point your bunch of a******'s I didn't post this in the family section I posted this in Tech talk in a hope to in an effort to speak to and employ some professionals not receive a sermon by speed conscious individuals with no clue.


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