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Thread: Wooldridge Jet to Prop Conversion???

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    Moderator stid2677's Avatar
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    Default Wooldridge Jet to Prop Conversion???

    I'm considering having the transom on my Wooldridge Alaskan II 20ft with 150 Honda jet unit modified so that I can install a lower unit with a prop to gain more payload, deep water speed and fuel mileage. I was told that they would cut out 5 to 7 inches and then make a plate that would slide over the transom when you want to reinstall the jet unit. Anyone have any experiance with this or recommendations??? I put over a 1000 miles on this boat in PWS and it really gets sluggish with a heavy load in 3 to 4 ft seas. Plus the pumps loves to suck in all kinds of floatsom. The increase in power and fuel mileage would be worth the cost to me. It's hard to cut the transom on a 37k boat. If anyone ever designs one boat that would do all in Alaska they would be rich. LOL

    Steve

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    Member akrstabout's Avatar
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    Default I have seen it and have owned one

    it was not a woolridge alaskan though. but most of what i have seen has only been 40 horse jets or so like that. not sure about the weight of the 150 and structural might be an issue. Ever consider a lift? Who are you going to hire to do the work?

    my boat so far has done it all, but not real shallow stuff. but on the kenai to homer to whittier and some lakes in between. problem is though you compromise some things for others. But i am happy with it for now.

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    Default

    You do not have to cut anything if this company offers a shaft extension for your motor:
    http://www.baymfg.com/

    Unfortunately they do not show a kit for your Honda. I am learning as I go about this process also. A jack plate would work for you but a lot of people advise against them but I think they can be made to work if you take the time to do it correctly. But I am guessing you have a 20 inch shaft motor on your boat and that may not be possible.
    Call Wooldridge and ask to speak to Glen or Vince. They love to talk and know there stuff.
    Tennessee

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    Default Exactly

    I do have the 20 inch short shaft. The mod I'm looking at is the Wooldridge mod. The shop is off Dale road by the River boat Discovery in Fairbanks. Have heard that they are one of the best. I was told that jack plates are designed to raise motors not lower them and if you turn it upside down they will work. However, if you strike something it will force the engine into the transom. The Boat shop in Fairbanks told me that they have done this mod before with good results. I really need the bennifits this will give me and it is by far cheaper than any other options. I might contact the factory and see what they say. Snowwolfe could you pm me the contact info for wooldrige???

    Thanks Steve

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    Default

    All there contact information can be found here:

    http://www.wooldridgeboats.com/

    Have you considered trying to sell your present motor and going bigger? I think in the long run you will be better off.
    I plan on installing a 200 on mine with the 20 inch shaft and then adding the Bay Kit to change over to prop.
    Other considerations are to go with the 25 inch shaft model and a jack plate. Then just lower the motor and readd the prop. I know Wooldridge recommends against the jack plate but I do see quite a few jet boats running them. But the jack plate will not help you with the 20 inch shaft.
    Tennessee

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    Default A hole in the water.

    Trying to pour as little money into the water as I can. Hind sight beind 20 20. I can do it this way for under 2 grand. A repower would be way more. You are correct about the fact that I should have gotten the long shaft. Current motor has less than 200 hours. I'm going to talk to Wooldridge and see what they say.
    I e-mailed bay marine and ask what they could do. I had looked at their site before and did not see any for the honda. That adapter and a long shaft lower unit would be that cats behind.

    Thanks Steve

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    Call Bay, they are very slow to answer emails and sometimes they do not answer.
    Not sure how lowering your transom will permit you to install a prop. If you lower the motor dont you have to raise it up again to reinstall the jet? Or are you considering having the transom cut and then installing a jack plate?
    Seeing how the jet shoe doesnt go below the tunnel I would not worry about hitting anything with the motor.
    I would be curious as to how this all works out. Good luck!
    Tennessee

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    Default Transom

    They cut out the transom to lower the engine for use with the prop. They make a piece out of heavy duty aluminum that slides back into the slot and is bolted in. The lower bolt holes remain the same. You have to raise the engine unbolt it and raise and lower it. I'm going to see if I can have hard mounts installed that I can mount an A frame on to use a chain hoist over the engine to raise and lower it. These mounts would be on either side of the transom. They would be made out of aluminum also and would be removed after the engine was either raised or lowered. This would allow you do it the swap while in the field. The guy at the boat place told me the cut out has been done before by wooldridge. LIke I said going to call them Monday. I use my boat allot in PWS and I would save in gas what the mod would cost in just a couple seasons. Plus I would gain about 750 more lbs in payload and it would be allot safer in the rough deep water. Took it to Hitchenbrook last year and it got a little dicey. Last thing you need is to be in rough water and have the pump foul with floatsom.

    Steve

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    Member akrstabout's Avatar
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    Default you took your flat bottom

    all the way out there? You must have left from Valdez? If you have your transome cut to what you need it at. then why not put a lift on then. save your back trouble and much easier and faster. Plus that way you can adjust your motor better to your boat. Other wise you might end up an inch or so off which can cost you performance. Keep kicking the idea around and it will eventually come to you.

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    Default

    Its a good mod to have done, but I would install a jackplate along with it so you do not have to build a lift or buy an engine lift everytime you want to make the switch. Hewes craft used to come like that from the factory and we would switch back and forth every time we went to Valdez or out on the lake for the weekend. Went for years before we got a jackplate and that made it a lot easier. There are two models, one hydraulic and one manual with a giant bolt. Either way its very easy to do. With a jack plate you can make the complete switch in an hour. Without it probabaly more like 2 hours.

    Good luck!

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    Default Great Idea!!

    Some time you can't see the forest for the trees. I did not think of that. I'm sure that might be a better way to skin this cat. I did run from Valdez when I went to Hitchenbrook. I have ran from Whittier to out pass Naked Island. It is all about weather, weather, and weather. I do have air rides seats, that makes a huge difference. The bow is also self bailing, just got to keep the pointy end into the nasty stuff. I used to live in Hawaii and have seen some bad seas. The cold water here is the killer. I keep exposure suits in the boat at all times. You don't have long in 30 something water unprotected. I also keep the book Cruising the Sound with me as well, just in case I need a hidey-hole.

    Steve

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    Check with Dick Stallman of Outboard jets ( he invented them) ... He has a bracket that is slick, economical and should solve your problem of going from jet to prop. He can be reached at 510-562-6049 web site is www.outboardjets.com. I am looking at upgrading to a Wooldridge from my jetcraft.... looks like a great boat.

    Good luck.

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    Just bought a Wooldridge with prop & jet lower units, it has the bay kit on it- but the owner said I'd would have to raise the motor up 2 bolt holes to put the jet pump back on? I was hoping with the bay kit extension you could leave the motor where it needs to be for the jet? Anyone learned any more since this thread started? Thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kandiyohi Kid View Post
    Just bought a Wooldridge with prop & jet lower units, it has the bay kit on it- but the owner said I'd would have to raise the motor up 2 bolt holes to put the jet pump back on? I was hoping with the bay kit extension you could leave the motor where it needs to be for the jet? Anyone learned any more since this thread started? Thanks
    You might want to just try it without moving the bolts. I'm the one that started this thread and have been running my Wolly AKII for years with the mod. Mine is setup using cmc hyd lift it has 5 inches of lift. When set for the jet, I can lower it and have just enough with the tunnel to run the prop without changing the engine mounting bolts. I now have hundreds of hours on the setup, really run shallow even with the prop.




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    what kind on suspension seats did you put i your alaskan? are they as low as the stock seats? and have you ever seen if they make a tilt steering wheel kit?

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    Quote Originally Posted by stid2677 View Post
    You might want to just try it without moving the bolts. I'm the one that started this thread and have been running my Wolly AKII for years with the mod. Mine is setup using cmc hyd lift it has 5 inches of lift. When set for the jet, I can lower it and have just enough with the tunnel to run the prop without changing the engine mounting bolts. I now have hundreds of hours on the setup, really run shallow even with the prop.




    Stid- did you have your transom cut? I see you were talking about that earlier. Did the cmc lift use existing holes for mounting? Did you mount it yourself? I have the bay kit so the prop set up is a 25" shaft with that- you are running a 20" shaft with the prop and the lift? Thanks

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    Moderator stid2677's Avatar
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    I did.have the transom cut. I have a 20 in short shaft.

    I had The guy that did the welding install the cmc, used 2 of the old holes and added 2 more.
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    Steve- Is the height in the pic where you run your prop at? I installed my CMC 5 " yesterday and trying to figure out if I have it in the "right" position. Hard to tell- but looks a tad lower than yours does- but I have the bay kit on it. If I leave the steering wheel straight the steering tab will crunch on the transom when I tilt it all the way up, if I turn it to one side it's fine. I guess thats the advantage off cutting the transom like yours is?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kandiyohi Kid View Post
    Steve- Is the height in the pic where you run your prop at? I installed my CMC 5 " yesterday and trying to figure out if I have it in the "right" position. Hard to tell- but looks a tad lower than yours does- but I have the bay kit on it. If I leave the steering wheel straight the steering tab will crunch on the transom when I tilt it all the way up, if I turn it to one side it's fine. I guess thats the advantage off cutting the transom like yours is?
    Here are a few pics showing with it down. From my research the transom mod is necessary so you can tilt the engine and to prevent engine contact with the transom if you have a prop strike.





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    Steve, Have you had a chance try it out yet? I'm curious about the affects moving the motor to the lift may have had on it's performance, especially in regards to the jet unit. I picked up a 21' Alaskan XL w/ a 200 E-tec last year and have been considering putting it on a lift so that I can switch back and forth as well. It performs beautifully as it is now and I REALLY do not want to screw it up. thanks.

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