I have a Martec folder on my boat (34+ also called 34/36) which is your
boat's little sister.
We've been using it for 3 seasons and it's world of difference in sailing
speed compared to a fixed 3 blades. It's measurably better in all
What you need to get it going:
- Martec is a phone call away and they are helpful the founder / inventor's
son is probably going to be the guy you talk to. He's pretty
- When I did it a couple years back, sending the blade axis to get reamed /
new pin / new Monel cotter pin was $80.00 plus shipping. A steal.
- The Monel cotter pin is an absolute must. I would not trust what came
with the boat, order one. Most people don't know the difference and think
that Stainless can't corrode. It can and does under water, especially when
in constant contact with dissimilar metals like a bronze prop. The
stainless steal pin will fail overtime causing the whole thing to fall
apart. No such issues with Monel.
- Don't let him try and talk you into "upgrading" the blades to more
pitch. We did / had tons of vibrations / ended up using the old blades
which work much better
How it performs
- Forward top speed under power is the same as the 3 bladed prop
- If it's in good shape / with the right blades it doesn't vibrate that much
- Reverse is weak and takes patience to get the prop to reverse direction /
re deploy both blades correctly. Not much of an emergency brake
- You have to go in the engine compartment and look at the shaft position
to make sure the prop is folded with blades horizontal for max speed when
racing. If they are vertical the lower one will hang down / drag. There
should be a mark on the shaft. I found that if I stop the engine with the
transmission in gear, the prop is almost always lined-up properly
- The prop is known to be the least drag prop when folded for sailing
- Some say that they become loose quickly / need frequent rebuilds. I have
used it 3 years (we sail all year long in GA too) / check it whenever we
go swimming / so far it's still slop free.
For us on the lake, it works fine. We don't motor very long distances I
typically burn about 20-30 gallons of fuel per year. For us, it's more
about top speed sailing / we race a fair amount / it fits the bill / it's
Best of luck / email me if you need more details.
1990 34+ "Take Five"
Lake Lanier, GA
Subject: Stus-List Help with folding prop insights?
I have a fixed, 3 bladed prop on Astralis currently, and suspect that its
slowing us down here in Florida where we just don't get the wind like we
did on Lake Michigan, so we rarely see much over 12 kts or so. I'm
thinking I'd like to get a little more speed out of her, and one area of
improvement could be the fixed prop.
In the pile of old parts that the prior owner left us, I found an old, and
obviously used Martec Eliptec RH18DX12P-3, two blade folding prop (it is
not geared). I have the blades and hub, but at the moment cannot find the
center pin. It seems like Martec may still be in the business of repairing
I've read some of the various reviews, and I understand there are better
solutions out there, but clearly I'd be dropping a few boat bucks to pull
Do any of you have direct experience with the Martec Eliptec, and can
advise me whether I'll hate this thing from a performance or vibration
point of view if I get a pin and put it on the boat?
I am OK with somewhat limited reverse, but would be anxious if I was giving
up a lot of forward power. And, I really don't want a lot of vibration,
especially if it's going to do things like tear up the cutlass bearing.
Thanks for your insights!
Bruce C. Whitmore
1994 C&C 37/40+, "Astralis"
Madeira Beach, FL
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