Load testing the Wooldridge Xtra Plus
I have read lots of banter on this sight about load testing Wooldridge boats, so I decided to post some of my findings and see what everybody has to say . Luckily, I don't have the XL, so this thread will probably not be locked any time soon.
My new to me boat is the 20.5 Xtra Plus with the 60" bottom. Old school 351 four barrel Kodiak. Kodiak 3 stage 5-5-4 with the Posinosle. I opted against the newer style grate to try and keep some rocks out of my impellers.
I loaded it up with 80gal gas, 150gal water, three people and gear. If you were at the deshka today baking at the mouth of the river, you probably saw my junk show.
The boat got on step in a reasonable amount of time at 4000 RPM without having to do the run up on the bow and then back again trick. I lowered the RPM's to 3400 and it stayed on step for a while then fell off. It ran ok at 3500 but would fall off some too. Anything more and I was always into my secondaries. My goal was to see how much weight the boat would take, and not have to run all 4 barrels. I estimate that the gear, gas, water and humans came to about 2400 pounds which is probably a bit much. I could do it for a while realizing that I would be less some gas sooner than later and my load weight would thus be decreasing to a more manageable level.
I tried to install a fuel management system last night, but it did not work today. I had to do it the old school way and look at my gauge. I know about how much fuel I used, but a lot of that was when the boat was not loaded, so I guess I will have to load her up again soon and see how it goes when I get the fuel management thingy working.
Let me know what y'all think.
If your out in the Valley and would like to barrow a 1" Gas Pump for load testing to fill your barrels stop by AK Frontier Fab. You can barrow ours at no charge, just ensure it comes back in working order. It pumps 40gpm and it takes no time to fill a 30-50gal drum.
Originally Posted by Daved
That is right neighborly of you. Interesting enough, I may be out there this weekend. I did some asking around and then talked to Schlagel Marine about the Scott Jet stuff. He convinced me to try the turbo impeller, change my middle impeller and increase my nozzle size to 100. I needed to get new impellers anyways. So, I will probably be retesting soon to see if it all works out. When are you open? I will post my results after the testing. It will be good to know the difference between how Scott and Kodiak sell their snake oils.
We're open 9-5pm sometimes later. Unless you change pitches, don't buy new. We can rebuild your existing impellers and give you performance thats better then new with tighter clearances and save you some $$. We're right behind Six Roblees in Wasilla.
Originally Posted by Daved
I changed pitch and metal. I went from 2 Bronze 19 degree to an 19 degree overlap/turbo and a 22 degree stainless. I already have a 24 degree stainless in the back. You are totally correct though. Having them rebuilt is the way to go, much improved performance from tuned up impellers.
Does your Xtra have trim tabs? I am asking as I knew of a xtra 20.5' 351 stage combo that with two people, gear, and 230 gallons of gas; they struggled to get on step. (Sorry no info about his impellor wear state but it was 3x19s)) He added the trim tabs and it made a difference with lighter but still heavier than "day fishing loads" but he never made another Koyokuk heavy run, as he moved out of state. We just concluded that the 5" bottom should be limited on its load hauling, and use the narrow bottom for the bit of extra speed it gives and buy fuel rather than burning to much to haul it. How does your Xtra do for fuel flow & speed with just a normal load. Might be cost effective to run lighter and faster (IE more MPG) and buy fuel. Some folks with the narrow bottom report being able to still achieve about 3.5mpg with the narrow bottom. Big difference between 3.5 and 2mpg.
Looking at others that have older Woolys they seem to max the narrow bottoms out at about 2000-2500lbs load also.
I think you could try a trim nozzle vs the tabs and it might work well. Its reported to help on smaller boats, and provide lower planning speeds, and has less effect on bigger boats.
Don't know what your engine tune is like but you may be able to set it so that you can stay out of the secondaries until 3600rpm (Carb and engine dependent) Tightening up the impellors like Halibutgrove suggested can do wonders also (By most accounts save 1-200rpm at cruise) By that I mean give you enough extra thrust to keep cruise RPM just below secondary opening RPM, as it sounds like your close to making that already. Between impellors and carb tweaking I'll bet you make it.
Anyhow FYI this was why I was asking about folks experience with the 18.5 IB Xtra - as it seems if limited to 2000lb load it might be workable for me. For the short boat I am going to add the trim nozzle.
Good luck, V2d
I will start a new thread if you guys want, but can we have some discussion on multiple pitch setups in three stages? I have run 3-19's and 3-22's but never a combination of them... Enlighten me please!
Ya might as well start a new thread. I will post my results here for the testing, but we can talk about pitches on another tread to get some more interest.
Thanks for the insights. I think you are right, I am probably about maxed out on load, but it is just fine for what I want to do. It would be nice to have about 200 more pounds in the boat though. I will have to see about fuel efficiency. I just got done re-doing all my electronics, so I will have MPH, MPG and GPH. Then I will be able to tell for sure were I stand. If I can easily push 2500 pounds, I can do what I want to do and this effort will be worth it.
I absolutely advocate upgrading from the T3 nozzle, good call.
I will keep trim tabs in mind, but am hesitant. I am hard on stuff and think they would just get broken. The trim nozzle sounds like a more robust, all be it, more expensive option.
I will see about RPM's and the secondaries I think I am at around 3500-3600 when they open, just about right. I might rev it up while on the trailer and have the cowling open just to be certain though.
Ya, the skinny boats full on just don't haul as much. I just don't have the extra 10-15k over the price of my current boat to justify an XL right now though. That is a good thread, why do we get these skinny things anyways?
Originally Posted by Vsquared