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Marine Drive Design Blog

Boat Propulsion

Our comments on recreational marine drive development since our March 2001 paper, Propeller Driven, Recreational Marine Drive Designs; Learning from the Past with an Eye to the Future. Comments include trade magazine articles, patents, historical information and other materials of interest to those designing outboards and stern drives for recreational boats, as well as inboards, surface drives and water jet marine drives. If you are interested in Outboard, Stern Drive, Inboard, or Water Jet drive design for boat propulsion, you may also be interested in some of our other papers and sites listed below.

8 Oct 2008 Steyr Hybrid received IBEX Innovation Award
Steyr of Austria recently received an Innvation Award at IBEX in the inboard category for their diesel-electric hybrid package.

The Steyr system and others are discussed in an October 2006 Soundings Trade Only article titled, "Industry Evaluates New Hybrid Drives" on Pages 30-32.

8 Oct 2008 a newcomer won an honorable mention Innovation Award in the same category (Inboards), Caudwell Marine for their Axis drive.

18 Sept 2008 U.S. Patent Application 2008/0214067 for Surface Piercing Propeller Tunnel awarded to David Gruenwald. Published 4 Sept 2008. Flooded tunnel results in smooth acceleration, improved handling, and a shorter transition period. This is a Ven-T boat patent.

21 Jan 2008 We have noticed some new Asian outboard web sites recently including:

20 Nov 2007 U.S. Patent 7,297,035 for "Marine Craft Adapted for Shallow Water Operation" assigned to Gator Tail, L.L.C issued today is from a very shallow drive (mud boat drive) that hangs on the top of the transom and is tiller steered.

2 Nov 2007 Boating Magazine November 2007 has a very nice story on General Motors' Marine Engine Development Center. It talks about their history and especially focuses on their recent efforts to add fuel injection to their popular 3.0 liter stern drive engine. The article also discusses their on water testing program.

Power House
by Dan McCosh
Boating Magazine
November 2007
Pgs. 80-83.


3 Oct 2007 Trailer Boats October 2007 issue briefly reviews Mercury Marine's new high horsepower tiller power steering option.

They also mention two similar products; Engine Steer at enginesteer.com and Warrior at warriorboats.com

Mercury's unit is a hydroelectric system with some parts borrowed from the Verado. It fits all the way up to 250 HP Optimax two strokes.

Tiller Power Steering
Propulsion Report
by Jim Barron
Trailer Boats
Oct. 2007
Page 20


3 Oct 2007 Trailer Boats October 2007 issue has a nice review of Yamaha's huge new 350 HP V-8 outboard. They are targeting some of the larger boats currently using several three or more outboards.

Monster Mill
by Jim Barron
Trailer Boats
Oct. 2007
Pages 36-39.


30 Aug 2007 International Boat Industry Nov. 2006 issue has a mention of the Yellowfin Marine Drive, a variable surface drive, that seems to have resurfaced after laying low a few years.

Yellowfin Marine Drive Revolution in Boat Control
International Boat Industry
November 2006 Pg. 152.

It mentions the drive was shown at the Southhampton Boat Show in Sept. 2006. The VSD (Variable Surface Drive) is now said to show the fruits of its 12 year development and five years of testing.


30 Aug 2007 International Boat Industry Nov 2006 issue also mentions Honda showed some outboards with BLAST (Boosted Low Speed Torque) at the Southampton and La Rochelle Boat Shows in late 2006. Their mid rage BF75 and BF90 units used BLAST to advance timing so they could get on plane faster. The system is controlled by the programmed electronic fuel injection system (PGM-FI). The same outboards also featured a further forward center of gravity (1.5 inches).

Honda BF75 and 90 Outboards With Added BLAST
International Boat Industry
November 2006 Pg. 163.


30 Aug 2007 Boating magazine's Jan 2007 issue has a nice feature story on Indmar's new catalytic converter.

The First Marine Catalytic Converter
by Charles Plueddeman
January 2007 Pgs. 99-104


27 July 2007 I noticed Boating magazine had some nice coverage of Mercruiser's new small VAZER drive by Charles Plueddeman. They report the four cylinder engine was originally designed for Opel in Europe and is now produced in South America. It will only be offered with power steering and closed cooling. The block is angled 50 degrees to port to lower its profile in boats and the exhaust manifold riser is routed behind the engine further lowering its profile. It uses the Alpha lower unit with a shorter midsection. VAZER is said to be the first automatic draining stern drive. Although heavier than an outboard, it moves the center of gravity forward and down making boats more stable.

Small Block Wonder
Charles Plueddeman
June 2007 Pg. 64


4 July 2007 We received a note from Running Tide Yachts, they are in process their "Power Propulsion" page which discusses some less well known propulsion approaches.


It was nice to hear from them again and nice to see someone else trying to pull some of this stuff together.


21 June 2007

Came across a great review of Outboard Motor cost analysis in an EPA document for the upcoming emissions standards. It has an indepth discussion of costing an outboard and is dated 4 April 2007.



26 Apr 2007

U.S. Patent 7,195,525 Outboard Motor issued 27 March 2007 assigned to Honda for a hybrid internal combustion engine - battery powered outboard. The improvement over other hybrids is said to be a more simple controller mountable near the battery (not on the outboard) removing it from the arear of heatand and vibration, as well as reducing the contraints on its shape and volume if it were to be placed under the cowling.

U.S. Patent Application 2007/0010144 Shroud Enclosed Inverted Surface Piercing Propeller Outdrive published 11 Jan 2007, invented by Howard Arneson (dont think we need to remind you who this gentleman is). Basically, a shroud shaped like an updside down horseshoe surrounds the bottom half of the prop.

Earlier entries are listed below in text format.

11 Apr 2007 Motor Boating magazine just published a great
article on the last 100 years of marine propulsion titled
"Power Century" written by Tim Banse.



10 April 2007 Brunswick has recently been awarded a few
interesting marine drive patents.

U.S. Patent 7,188,581 Marine Drive With Integrated Trim Tab
issued 13 March 2007 for a version of their new Zeuss
Cummings MerCruiser Pod Drive that includes a hydraulically
activated flap (trim tab).

U.S. Patent 7,185,599 Jet Drive Propulsion System for a 
Pontoon Boat issued 6 March 2007 for a jet drive "pod"
that can easily be intergrated into a pontoon boat. The
pod can even include the fuel tank.

U.S. Patent 7,182,033 Self-Contained Marine Propulsion
System for a Pontoon Boat isseud 27 Feb. 2007 similar to
the patent above.

U.S. Patent 7,175,491 Assembly System for a Marine Propulsion
Device issued 13 Feb 2007 for a stern drive and engine combination
that could be assembled together before being installed in
the boat to speed up boat building operations.

U.S. Patent 7,131,385 Method for Braking a Vessel With Two 
Marine Propulsion Devices issued 7 Nov 2006 describes steering
twin drives for optimum braking (adding drag from putting them 

Volvo Penta has also had some interesting patents recently

U.S. Patent 7,186,157 Turning Propeller Drive for a Boat 
issued 6 March 2007 for a through the bottom of the hull

U.S. Patent 7,182,657 Boat Hull With Outboard Drive and 
Outboard Drive for Boats issued 27 Feb 2007 for a though
the bottom of the hull drive.

U.S. Patent 7,118,434 Outboard Drive for Boats issued
10 Oct 2006 for a through the bottom of the hull drive.

The Brunswick and Volvo Penta patents above continue to
follow the trend of "niche" drives - developing drives
for more specific applications, with the exception of the
Brunswick's assembly process patent. 

2 March 2007 VEN-T BOATS recently showed a small entry 
level boat propelled by a vented tunnel drive running a 
shallow running surfacing propeller surrounded by a shroud 
and twin rudders at the rear. 
Designed by Ingenium Product Development, VEN-T BOATS 
debuted the new boat at the recent Dealer Expo in 
Indianapolis. We will be covering this drive from our 

More info is available from the official VEN-T BOATS site


23 Jan 2007 Mercury MerCruiser announced a new 100HP stern 
drive called Vazer to be built in Stillwater. Its a 1.6L GM 
Vortec SOHC-4 with a compact stern drive. Production is 
scheduled to begin in March in Stillwater per IBI news

24 Sept 2006 - seems like drive innovations have been
pretty slow lately. Just saw

"Inventor Claims Overdrive System Cuts Fuel Costs"
Soundings Trade Only
August 2006 Pgs 20 & 33.

Patrick Shea of Texas has an overdrive that mounts
between the bellhousing and the drive of stern drives.
He claims it drops fuel consumption 16.5 to 17 percent.
Shea says the device is patented, he is looking for a
manufacturer, and would consider selling his patent.
He is also working on a unit for outboards.

25 May 2006 - came across an interesting List Serv
on Marine History from a Canadian University


it appears to have some drive info in it.

Archives are online at:


25 Apr 2006 - Minn Kota has released some electric
trolling motors that mount to the top of outboard 
anticavitation plates. Looks like they mount as a pair.
The freshwater version is called "Engine Mount Motors"
and the salt water version is called Riptide.

15 Mar 2006 -  Several drive manufacturers purchase 
drives or powerheads from other drive manufacturers.

Who Makes What for Whom?
Trailer Boats  February 2006 (page 28)
by Jim Barron

Details the who makes what drives and powerheads
from which manufacturer now and in recent years.

12 Mar 2006 - we came across an interesting historical
item yesterday in a 1905 edition of the New York Times

Boat With 60 Mile Speed: 
Inventor's Prediction After His Test at the Garden
New York Times
9 March 1905 pg 14

Fritz Grawert-Zellin showed his prototype boat yesterday
at the Sportsmen's Show at Madison Square Garden. 
His small boat easily towed a 30 foot launch around the 
Garden. It uses a combination of a new type of ship, a new 
type of propeller and a Keel propeller. The Grawert turbine 
will be half the size of the smallest turbines in use today 
for the same size craft according to Mr. Grawert-Zellin.
It is a rotary engine with the pistons directly mounted to 
the propeller shaft. Compressed gasses are brought in to
the explosion chamber within the cylinder. Water is thrown 
from the screws, travels right out from the concave blades 
instead of rushing aslant. A small 3500 rpm prop allows 
high speed due to its location amidship. He anticipates 
60 mph speed from ocean going vessels using this design.

16 Feb 2006 Cummins MerCruiser Pod Drive introduced
at Miami Boat Show per ibinews report dated today. 
The project, code names Zeus, has horizontal contrarotating
propellers (sounds like a response to Volvo's new drive).
It will be launched in 2007 and can be mated with a 500hp
Quantum engine. The report also says it uses a joystick control
and includes a GPS driven "station keeping" feature.

16 Feb 2006 - Mercury Press Release today announces
a new 700 HP racing engine teamed with a new drive called
the The ACE Drive. The new drive, a dry sump sterndrive, was
also introduced at Miami this week. The new drive fills the gap
between Bravo One XR and the dry-sump Six drives.

16 Feb 2006 - Indmar Products Co. is introducing its 
production-ready catalytic converter at the Miami 
International Boat Show, which gets under way tomorrow.
per Soundings Trade Only news report dated today.

10 Feb 2006 - "Did You Know" Boating Industry 
Feb 2006 pg 18 once again reports Yamaha is looking
at much larger outboards, and for the first time mentions
Mr. Dyskow (Yamaha Marine U.S.) suggested "the time
is coming for the marine industry to consider HYBRID

The same magazine reported on page 42 in a "Noteable
Quotables" section, Mr. Dyskow as saying "There's
no secret that we're intrigued by the four-stroke bass

14 Feb 2006 ibi news announced today that Mercury 
"remanufactures" 10,000th outboard poewrhead since
it stated in 1999. Their Oshkosh site rebuilds powerheads 
for over 70 outboard and sport-jet engine applications. 
They anticipate moving in to a larger facility to meet
increased demand. Mercury remanufactures carburetors 
in Arkansas, sterndrive and inboard engines in Missouri, 
and water pumps, starter motors, and alternators in Florida. 

10 Jan 2006  "Latest Tests of Hydrodynamic Flushing Technique 
Very Promising"  IBI news. 6 Jan 2006.
Tyvik of Norway continues to develop displacement boat populsion 
technology using nozzles to flush water horizontally perpendicular 
to the bow to reduce pressure on the front of a boat, allowing water 
at the back of the boat to push it forward. This method might be 
employed by houseboats for nonpropeller propulsion (it could also
remove propeller injuries on displacement boats). 
The technology is called Hydrodynamisk fremdrift in their language.


Student Web site at Vestfold University

3 Jan 2006

"Smooth Drive" Yamaha Hydra Drive 
"Propulsion Report" Trailer Boats.
January 2006. Pg. 28.

Jim Barron reminds us Yamaha has continued to sell
their Hydra Drive in Australia, New Zealand and other 
countries, and reports this year they will be introducing
several diesel versions in Europe. They have also 
began using their TRP (Twin Rotating Propellers) on 
this drive. Trailer Boats reports they dont know if Yamaha
intends to re-introduce it to the U.S., but if they did,
all they would need to do is pack it and ship it.

3 Jan 2006

"Power to Burn"
Marine Propulsion Report 2006"
Trailer Boats. January 2006. Pgs. 60-70.

They report two stroke outboards are nearly extinct this 
year due to EPA regulations that have become more 
restrictive every year since 1998. Only Yamaha and 
Johnson will offer two strokes this year. "Johnson reportedly
has enough pollution credits banked with the EPA to build
these engines for several more years but eventually they
will be phased out entirely."

The article again reports Yamaha currently builds outboards
to 300 HP and has indicated higher horsepower units
are coming to power 30 to 40 foot boats using largers 

26 Dec 2005

"UK. Newage gears up for London Boat Show"        
BYM News 15 December 2005  

Newage Transmissions will be showing their StepDrive two speed
automatic transmission for Volvo Penta's 290 DuoProp at the London
Boat Show. It "sandwiches" in between the drive leg, maintains the
same gear ratio in top gear, and its low gear greatly improves
propeller efficiency at slow speeds and during acceleration. 
Low gear is engaged below 1500 rpm. 

19 Dec 2005

"Electric Outboards: Quietly Grow Boat Sales on 
Restricted Lakes". by Jeff Davidson
Boat & Motor Dealer. November 2005 Pgs.25-26
does a great job discussing recent innovations in
electric outboards designed by Minn Kota to push
14 to 18 foot  pontoon boats at 5 mph for two hours 
with four regular deep cycle marine batteries.
A propeller redesign and seeking comments from
potential users in areas restricted from using gas
powered outboards has greated a new alternative
for these areas.

19 Dec 2005

"Bye-Bye Stern Drive" by the Boating Tech Team.
Boating Magazine. January 2006. Pgs. 116-119.
Compares stern drives and V-drives. The article 
discusses many of the minor nuances between the 
drives and their performance. The details they mention
would be well considered by others considering 
producing an alternative drive.

***************** 2 Dec 2005 Yesterday we posted our latest marine drive design paper "Marketing New Marine Drive Concepts Similar to Outboards and Stern Drives: a Difficult Path for Independent Inventors and Small Companies" and a companion chart "Recreational Marine Drive Commercialization Path Chart" Both can be reached from our Marine Drive Design Papers page at: http://www.rbbi.com/white/white.htm We are currently working on a paper focusing on market statistics for outboards 30 HP and below. *********************************************************** 23 Nov 2005 U.S. Patent #6,966,806 for a "Replaceable Leading Edge for a Marine Drive Unit" was issued yesterday (22 Nov 2005) to Brunswick for a separate leading edge portion of the nose cone/drive shaft housing made from a different material than the main portion to allow crushing and deformation to protect the main portion on impact with debris or other obstacles. They also mention the possibility of putting "crush boxes" in the structure of the new part. ********** 23 Nov 2005 I also came across a Pursuit Dynamics patent today, U.S. Patent 6,662,549, for their pursuit drive (steam drive) issued back on 16 Dec 2003, I am not sure if I listed earlier or not, so I relisted it here. This patent is an example of the highly informative patents filed by those seeking investors (they include much more data and information than normal patents from large existing entities). ************************ 2 Nov 2005 How Rating Horsepower by the Big Number on the Cover Came to Be. by Ralph Lambrecht, "Technical Corner", Boat & Motor Dealer, May 2005 Pgs: 8 and 10. I just came across the above buried in a pile of magazines. Mr. Lambrecht has another great column, this time he explains the horsepower rating standards used in the past, efforts to change them, and how it will be done in the future. ********************************** 19 Oct 2005 Norwegian Team Turns Prop Insided Out ibiNews 19 Oct 2005 Brunvoll and Norpropeller AS of Norway have been working on the "Rim Driven Thruster" (RDT) since 1992. The prop is powered at the "rim" (similar to an electric motor) not by a central shaft. Norpropeller is said to be focusings on small craft applications. http://www.ybw.com/ibinews/newsdesk/20050919115046ibinews.html see also: http://www.norpropeller.no "Yamaha Scraps Model Year, Mercury Will Too" Soundings Trade Only. Oct. 2005. Pg. 8. Continual improvements and problems of matching model year drives to model year boats are doing away with traditional model year drives at Yamaha and Mercury will follow their lead. ********************** 13 Oct 2005 "Fred Kanter Boat Car Builder" in Boating Magazine Oct 2005 pg. 160 talks about his boat-cars and relates "My company builds concept cars. We also built a 45-mph, fuel cell powered, silent surfboard for the Navy." Wonder how his surfboard drive compares to PowerSki JetBoards? ************* 15 Sep 2005 I came across a European patent for the Yellowfin suface drive that has been shown online for a few years at www.yellowfin.com EP1332960 and WPO03064249 It looks like their website has been polished up and they are up and going again. ************** 24 Aug 2005 "Keel Cooling on Workboat Engines" Keel cooling is being made available on two commercial ratings of Cummins MerCruiser Diesel's 5.9lt Quantum Series engine. The above story appeared in 24 Aug 2005 ibinews.com daily newsletter. Keel cooling is typically used with larger vessels (radiate heat through a plate in contact with the water on the bottom of the boat). This method might work its way into some recreational applications? ************ 10 Aug 2005 Hybrid Outboard - Stern Drive Cross The logical hookup of new high tech outboard engines inside the hull powering stern drives through the transom have been spoken of for several years. Trailer Boats August 2005 Propulsion Report "Power Trends" by Jim Barron (Pg 31) discusses several industry rumors and reports "we have also heard that Merc has tipped the I-6 Verado forward and coupled it to a stern drive." They go on to mention it would be an expensive drive, but volume might bring the cost down and it would give them an alternative to GM built engines. Mr. Barron says the drive may or may not ever make it to the marketplace. Huge Outboards? The same Trailer Boat article (above) reports Yamaha may be considering producing 350 to 400 horsepower V-8 outboards for boats over 30 feet. They will probably use large diameter props and provide an alternative to diesel power. ****************** 8 Aug 2005 We came across a technical article on Volvo's Composite (Ocean Series) Drive. "Saltwater No Match for Composite Stern Drive". by D. Brosius Composites Technology. Vol. 10, no. 1, pp. 36-38. Feb. 2004 The article reports the drive is a "compression molded, high-glass vinyl ester SMC that replaced the cast Al in highly loaded components exposed to saltwater". Reducing weight, increasing reliability and reducing part count. ******************* 26 Jul 2005 We have recently came across several new drives, many (but not all) from China / Taiwan Alpha Int'L Industrial & Trading Co. Ltd - Chinese outboard Star and SAIL - Chinese outboards Tayako Motors - small outboard from Japan Chongging Fano Development Company - small outboard from China Takt Outboard - small outboard from China Taiwan Marine Engine (TME) - Taiwan outboard Yang-Xian Products Ltd of Taiwan is making a thorough line of "will fit" parts for major outboards and stern drives. It does not take lots of imagination to envision them assembling them into sellable units. Duodrive System - contrarotating surfacing drive from the UK http://www.duodrive.co.uk/preformance_engineering.htm Cosworth Marine previously Vortech Marine - a through transom drive resembling an outboard powerhead inside the boat powering a stern drive leg in the water. Currently raising funds in South Africa. http://www.exportcapital.co.za/port_vortech.html *************** 2 July 2005 Trailer Boats July 20O5 "There's Nothing is New" article in the Propulsion Report section (July 2005 pg 28). Jim Barron mentions he previously pointed out some similarities between Volvo Penta's new IPS traction drive and an old Faegeol designed Crosly Vertical Inboard Power (VIP) engine that functioned in a similar manner, but pushed instead of pulled the boat. A reader has since pointed out that in the same time frame, Western Gear built the SeaPower stern drive (in the days before MerCruiser) with a tractor drive, forward-neutral-reverse transmission, an a full 360 degrees rotation of the lower unit so it could push in shallow water or when beaching). The article includes a small insert of an old advertisement for the SeaPower drive. ******************** 30 June 2005 We noticed Brunswick recently received a patent for a vertically adjustable stern drive without a u-joint. U.S. Patent 6,902,451 issued 7 Jun 2005. 23 May 2005 We recently came across a handful of drive related patents we had not yet listed here: US Pat 6,213,824 Method for Reducing Vessel Draft, from Mark Small assigned to Power Vent. Issued 10 Apr 2001. US Pat 6,855,018 Propulsion System for Boats from Don Burg. A variation of the Hydro-Air Drive designed especially for catamarans and other multi-hulls. Issued 15 Feb 2005. US Pat 6,863,013 Boat Propulsion System by Evan Noyes Jr. has a moveable trim plate in a tunnel with a surfacing prop. Issued 8 Mar 2005. US Pat 6,890,227 Compact Jack Plate assigned to Brunswick. Issued 10 May 2005. US Patent Application US 2005/0106958 Boat Propulsion System. A hydraulic powered drive with a hydraulic clutch from Japan. Printed 19 May 2005. ********************* 23 May 2005 Antique Outboard Museum "Outboard Museum Gears Up" in the May 2005 edition of Boat US (pgs 26,26) covers a collection of 76 antique outboards from Duke's Outboard (a dealer) being readied for display at the new "Duke Montgomery Outboard Motor and Boat Museum in Rhinelander Wisconsin. These old drives still hold lots of ideas for today's innovators. Many features and concepts they tried, but failed might be able to be accomplished today with modern materials and processes. 20 May 2005 I finally got around to reading the Feb 2005 issue of European Boatbuilder. They have an excellent review of the new Volvo IPS drive that also talks quite a bit about the installation process. "Pulling Potential" European Boatbuilder Feb. 2005 pgs. 52-55. The same issue contains an editorial about the drive and Volvo's claim it "Will Change the Course of Boating Forever" on page 3. Both make reference to this being the first forward facing steerable propeller for recreational boats. I guess they forgot about the MCB "Drive 45 Degrees" from Sweden in the late 1960s? Plus we recently came across a quote from Carl Sagan, the astronomer, that might be relevant to Volvo's claims the drive "Will Change the Course of Boating Forever". Carl Sagan said, "Extraordinary Claims Require Extraordinary Evidence." We notice none of the articles to date say much about prop guard issues. Forward facing props can be pretty rough on people and manatees in the water, but it is targeted at larger boats that tend to be a little slower moving and not have people in the water around them. We are especially happy to see a drive come to market that requires a few hull modifications. Perhaps their drive will open the market to more designs requiring some hull modifications. We wish Volvo Penta the best and applaud them for bringing a breath of fresh air to the marketplace. ********************** 18 May 2005 I came across an SBIR Navy project for hybrid drive small boats back in 2003. They were going to use a 7 meter RIB. The award went to UQM Technologies. http://www.navysbir.brtrc.com/navySearch/Award/award.aspx?pk=F25FDCFA-A530-4BE7-AD3C-F452F27A45D9 A related project was awarded to Littoral Research of New Orleans and Kinetic Art and Technology (KAT) and its related commercialization arm, Lynx Motion Technology Corporation. The 7 meter RIB will use SEMA motor technology. http://www.navysbir.brtrc.com/navySearch/Award/award.aspx?pk=2FE7CACD-342F-4DC0-B7AC-1D11E1B3E09E *********** 5 May 2005 "Recalling the first V4 outboards as milestones in boating history" article in Boat & Motor Dealer April 2005 issue on pgs 4 and 6 by Ralph Lambrecht does a great job of covering the early history of the V4 and V6 designs. ********** 5 May 2005 Invention of the Outboard Motor is detailed in a great Soundings Trade Only article titled, "The Outboard's 100th Birthday" in their May 2005 issue on pages 52-53. It attributes the invention of the first successful outboard to Cameron B. Waterman and a 1905 patent instead of Ole Evinrude and provides many details of the early days. ************ 5 May 2005 Marine Technology Jet Inc (manufacturers of the variable inlet, variable out water jet was acquired on 20 Jan 2005 by a new company named IntelliJet Marine, Inc and are online at http://www.intellijetmarine.com They have now packaged the variable inlet, variable outlet with a variable prop/pump that can over stroke for reverse (no reversing bucket is needed). ***************** 3 May 2005 I noticed a pump jet patent issued today to Applied Combustion Technology (ACT). U.S. Patent 6,887,117 Pump Jet With and Exhaust Bypass and Associated Methods. Device is for outboards and tries to solve the problem of exhaust gas reducing performance of pumpjet drives in reverse. *********** 3 May 2005 Power Boat Reports May 2005 edition has a nice brief review of the new Volvo IPS drive on page 6 and lists some specific advantages of the design. 1. Engine can be mounted level with no "tip up" 2. Engine placement can be in optimal position fore/aft for the boat using the optional jackshaft 3. Engine placement allows designer to optimize useful interior space 4. Exhaust gas is vented underwater reducing noise and keeping transom clean. 5. Boat handling is improved. Steering the leg/prop instead of a rudder makes it more responsive. 6. Use of two small contrarotating propellers prevents stern walking while docking, often a problem with larger, slow turning props. 7. Overall performance is enhanced because thrust is parallel to the boat instead of at an angle like most inboard drives 8. Props run in undisturbed water adding to performance. 9. Drive claims 30% improvement in fuel consumption. ************* 3 May 2005 Boat & Motor Dealer April 2005 page 10 has a great chart on Engine Penetration by Segment from the 2005 JD Power and Associates Marine Engine Competitive Information Study. It lists types of boats: Bass Boat, Pontoon, Coastal Fishing, Ski Boat, Runabout, Express Cruiser and shows the percentage of each craft running a specific engine type: Inboard 4 stroke, Outboard 2 stroke, Outboard 4 stroke, Sterndrive 4 stroke. We often hear from groups with a new drive design that think "everybody" will need their drive. We try to get them to determine which of the many segments might be most attracted to their drive and why. This chart will be helpful in that discussion. ********* 3 May 2005 I recently found a new hydraulic marine drive from Australia, "Hy-Thrust Hydrostatic Stern Drive" at http://www.amphibiousvehicles.com.au/HyThrust.html the stainless steel drive is used in "Duck Boats' for tourism/ sightseeing excursions. ******** 3 May 2005 I recently notice a couple patents for an unusual surface drive. U.S. Patent 6,823,812 issued 30 Nov 2004 Drive uses trim tabs to set the surface level for the drive. It is shown as twins powered by one engine. I think I have also seen a much more recent patent on the drive, but dont see it laying around here at the moment. ********** 3 May 2005 Lenco Marine now has a trim tab mounted electric powered prop (sort of a trim tab mounted trolling motor) http://www.lencomarine.com ************ 3 May 2005 I noticed a drive patent proposed by an independent inventor called the Manatee Drive U.S. Patent Application 2005/0079776 printed 14 April 2005 Drive looks like an outboard but powers a small snowmobile track instead of a propeller. ************** 16 March 2005 We reviewed some of the more recent U.S. Patents for marine drive designs. U.S. Patent 6,808,432 Marine Propulsion Device with Cooling System Cover. Assigned to Brunswick. A water conducting cover for stern drives. Issued 26 Oct 2004. U.S. Patent 6,814,637 Marine Inboard Through Hull Propeller Drive. A through hull drive of the nature of the Volvo IPS drives, but with a rearward facing propeller, and a chain drive. Issued 9 Nov 2004. U.S. Patent 6,840,888 Hydro-Electric Control System for Marine Vessels. Assigned to Teleflex. An example of recent electronic shifting and throttle control systems. Issued 11 Jan 2005. U.S. Patent 6,855,018 Propulsion System for Boats. Invented by Donald Burg. Twin tunnel surfacing drive related to the Hydro-Air drive, but particularly targeting multi hull / catamaran type craft. Issued 15 Feb 2005. U.S. Patents 6,851,990 and 6,860,770 Method and Device for Low Noise Underwater Propulsion. Assigned to Boeing. The craft "sucks in" and expells water for propulsion. Primary applications are military, but it also has some civilian advantages. Issued 1 Mar 2005 and 8 Feb 2005 U.S. Patent 6,863,013 Boat Propulsion System. A surfacing tunnel drive. Issued 8 Mar 2005. **************************** 16 March 2005 Saro of Germany has a new TUPROP Tunnel Drive that resembles a stern drive (has a snout, gimbal, lower leg, etc) more than their previous drives. http://www.tuprop.com ******************* 9 March 2005 Trailer Boats March 2005 edition reviews the new Volvo IPS drive in a Propulsion report by Jim Barron titled "Best Foot Forward" on page 30. This drive may be a sign the industry is now more open to drives requiring hull modifications (many drive designs not currently in widespread use require some alterations or major changes in hulls not present in typical outboard and stern drive boats). ***************** 2 Dec 2004 A new Volvo Penta drive is featured in pre-release story in Motor Boat & Yachting. The drive is due for worldwide release at London Boat Show in January. Called "Inboard Performance System" or IPS, it features twin forward facing propellers on a "thru the bottom of the hull" drive leg. http://www.mby.com/auto/newsdesk/20041101132742mbynews.html It can also be seen in a 1 Dec ibinews release http://www.ibinews.com/ibinews/newsdesk/20041101141554ibinews.html The drive can be seen in the U.S. Patents below 6,623,320 6,705,907 6,783,410 ***************************** 2 Nov 2004 We came across an old design patent today U.S. Design Patent D187,407 issued to an inventor in England for "Transom Drive Unit for a Boat" that appears to have a circular mounting structure on the transom (allows drive to pivot around a circle?). ********************************* 24 Sept 2004 Found a manual online for Stern Powr drives from Dana at http://www.marysvillemarine.com/catalog/cat_p256-258.pdf ******************** July 15, 2004 Yamaha article reports trends in market share of outboard drives by technology (direct injection, four-stroke, carbureted two-stroke). Consumers Flocking to New Technology Outboards Boating Industry July/Aug 2004 Pg. 10 A chart indicates fiscal 2002, fiscal 2004 estimates and fiscal 2007 predictions. 2002 - 54 percent carb 2 stroke, 40 percent four stroke, 6 percent DI 2004 - 39 percent carb 2 stroke, 52 percent four stroke, 9 percent DI 2007 - 15-20 percent carb 2 stroke, 65-75 percent four stroke 10-15 percent DI ************************* 7 July 2004 Soundings Trade Only recently printed an article with some nice info in it on the satisfaction of boaters with dual prop stern drives. Owners of dual prop stern drive boats appear significantly more satisfied than owners of single prop drive boats. Shoddy Builders Can Drag Down the Whole Industry Soundings Trade Only June 2004 Pgs. 48-49, by Eric Sorensen The chart is on page 49. Marine Jet Technology Corp scored a nice article in Soundings Trade Only about their microcontroller controlled water jet with variable inlet and a variable nozzle called the Variable Marine Jet. Jetdrives Are the Future, Predicts Company Soundings Trade Only July 2004. Pg. 49. Soundings Trade Only also recently reported on the class action suit filed by boaters against Mercury Marine for problems with their 2.5 and 3.0 Liter Optimax engines from 2000, 2001, and 2002. Suit was filed May 2003 in the 11th Judicial Circuit Court in Miami - Dade County FL. It claims there were defects in the fuel injection and powerhead components. Mercury is now offering rebates on Mercury and Quicksilver parts used to repair the engines and rebates toward the purchase of new engines to those affected. Mercury hopes this offer will be accepted at the next court hearing on Sept. 9. Mercury Moves to Settle Class Action Suit Offers to extend warranties, give rebates to owners of some 2000-2002 Optimax engines. Soundings Trade Only July 2004. Pg. 16. Mercury's Verado made the cover of Design News and the issue includes a feature story on the plastic parts used in Verado. The article discusses DuPonts involvement and talks about the specific challenges involved. It great to see a marine drive on the cover of an engineering publication. Congratulations to Mercury Marine. Plastics Take the Water Design News 28 June 2004 Cover Story and Pgs. 56-62 ********************************************* 7 July 2004 I came across a technical market study of two stroke engines that includes outboards Preliminary Results from a Market Analysis of the Two-Stroke Combustion Engine Industry Technovation (an Elsevier Publication) Vol. 17 No. 7. July 1997. Pgs. 403-408. The core of the study will include application areas, patent activity and industrial company identification. ********************************* 7 July 2004 SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) now offers several downloadable marine drive papers (each for a fee). Many more focus on emissions or injection technologies, but the ones below focus more on design, mostly for outboards. The first two digits of the of papers number indicate the year of issue of the older papers, newer papers have the full year as the first part of their number. They are listed in chronological order below (oldest to newest). The Outboard Marine Corp. Model 480 Stern Drive Marine Propulsion Unit. SAE paper #620114 Modern Outboard Design - Johnson and Evinrude 50 HP SAE paper #710580 The 200 HP V-6 Outboard Motor (an OMC paper) SAE paper #760643 The Design and Development of the OMC V-8 Outboard Motor SAE paper #851517 The Development of Outboard Motors, Powered by New Concept High Speed Diesel Engines (a Yanmar paper) SAE paper #891780 Development of Fuel Injected Two-Stroke Outboard Motor (a Suzuki paper) SAE paper #911225 From Development to Industrialization of An IapacSr Marine Outboard D.I. 2-Stroke Engine (a Selva paper) SAE paper #2001-01-1780 Development of the High Pressure Injection (HPDI) System for Two-Stroke Outboard Motor (a Sanshin (Yamaha) paper) SAE paper #2001-01-1786 Development of Four-Stroke Outboard Motor (a Suzuki paper) SAE paper #2001-01-1803 Development of the Application of the Automotive Engine Technology to the V6 Four-Stroke Outboard Motor (a Honda paper) SAE paper #2002-32-1809 Development of Large V6 Four-Stroke 225PS Outboard Motor (a Sanshin (Yamaha) paper) SAE paper #2002-32-1822 Development of NASA High-Strength Aluminum Alloy for Use in the Evinrude Etec Outboard Motor (a Bombardier paper) SAE paper #2004-01-2588 ***************************************************** 7 July 2004 Someone asked us what schools might provide some special training in outboard engine design. Wisconsin University (near Mercury Marine's Outboard plants) has a small engine consortium that ties to some of their other engine programs. http://www.engr.wisc.edu/industry/atwork/vol3/unique.html http://www.erc.wisc.edu/wsec/index.html http://www.erc.wisc.edu/index.html Michigan Tech also has some outboard programs. ***************************** 8 June 2004 I am finally getting around to logging another great Ralph Lambert article, Time for a Lightweight Stern Drive Boat & Motor Dealer April 2004, Pgs. 4-6. This article is somewhat of a follow up to his April 1998 article in the same publication promoting the concept of taking some of the new high performance outboard powerheads, putting them inside the hull and powering a stern drive through the hull. He specifically points out how this would fit well with Mercury's new large four stroke outboard engines. ****************** 4 June 2004 Someone pointed out the CAP Propulsion System (Conically Adjusted Propulsion) propulsion and maneuvering system developed by Motala Verkstad. Their website is copyright 2002 by AB Motala Verkstad of Sweden http://www.motalaverkstad.se/cap.asp It appears to be a continuation of the unit promoted by Nixflu AB of Hamnen Sweden in the early 1990's then called the Nixdrive. This "steerable propeller" is now targeting sea going vessels. The earlier incarnation targeted recreational drives. ************* 26 May 2004 I stumbled over a Design News article from 2001 on the Volvo Penta Composite drive today. The article is very informative. Structural Composites Take to the Water Design News 9 April 2001 http://www.designnews.com/article/CA68922?stt=001&pubdate=04%2F09%2F01 *********** 12 Feb 2004 Mercury Marine introduced the much hyped "Project X" drive, now called Verado, at the Miami boat show today. It is a 2.6L supercharged inline 6 cylinder outboard. ********** 23 Jan 2004 A few days ago I came across two older articles with good coverage of drive technologies: MerCruiser BlackTrac multi-speed transmission Motor Boats June 1997 Pg. 116 We have the issue. It reviews MerCruisers multi-speed transmission. and NewTech Showdown: Optimax vs. MerCruiser Trailer Boats Oct 1998 Pgs. 46-50 and 78 We have the issue. They tested a 3.0L and 4.3L sterndrive against the 135 HP Optimax. A comparison of the two drive types and costs. **************** 12 Jan 2004 Stealth Drive for Ships Popular Mechanics June 2003 Pg. 24 Jonathan B. Rosefsky patented a variation of the Archimedes screw to reduce cavitation. The drive uses a ribbon like helical blade that reduces angle from front to back inside a cylinder. The drive also allows water in from the side. He formed a company called FLUID-motive to develop the concept in generators as well. ********* 12 Jan 2004 On 9 Jan 2004 most of the marine news media carried coverage of Mercury Marine's filing a complaint with the U.S. Dept of Commerce and the International Trade Commission, claiming Japanese manufacturers have been "dumping" outboards in America by selling them at below cost. The U.S. Yamaha marine division fired back a harsh reply at them. ************ 10 Jan 2004 Propulsion Report: Evolving Power Trailer Boats July 2003 Pg.7 by Jim Barron I came across this nice article today. Although only a page long, it covers quite a bit of the history of recreational marine drives and makes a few projections of the future. Well done Mr. Barron. ********** 5 Jan 2004 Suzuki announced they combined their U.S. motorcycle and marine operations effective Jan 1st 2004. 3 Jan 2004 Grey Market - PreRigging - Packaging - Outboards A Serious Industry Problem by Ben Sherwood Boating Industry Nov/Dec 2003 Pg. 22 Nice discussion of Packaged, pre-rigged, loose, grey market outboard marketing issues. ************** 3 Jan 2004 Technology Drives: Competition is Fueling Advances in Stern Drive Technology Family & Performance Boating Feb. 2004 Pgs. 17-19. Talks about history of stern drive development, via the "Iron Fist", IMCO Marine's high horsepower stern drive efforts including "Xtreme Advantage", and their 4X4 drive. It also plugs Dean Clausen's Bravo Shop's Bmax Poker Run Drive and Bmax Stage 2 drive. Also mentioned is Bob Teague's Teague Custom Marine Platinum Shaft XR Drive. The article also has a nice photo of IMCO Marine's standoff box. *********** 3 Jan 2004 Engine Dreaming and Speculation: Is Their a Revolution in the Works for Marine Propulsion Technical Corner by Ralph Lambert Pgs. 7-8 This article points out many innovations have busted on the scene with a lot of flash, then died away before ever making it to the market. It written pretty cynically, but he certainly has a valid point. He then begins to attack the Dyna Cam engine. One of the latest to rally press reports around a "new" engine promising to revolutionalize the marine market. *********** 11 Dec 2003 Ringprop continues to develop, raise money for and successfully sell some of its ringged propellers, being promoted as safer and incorporating some features of propeller guards. They recently also found a partner in J.L. French, a casting firm. This is the same design once promoted by Stealth Products International that originated in Australia. Ringprop http://www.ringprop.com 11 Sept. 2003 Marine Jet Tech has posted a nice technical paper on their variable inlet water jet (uses a microcontroller). Presentation was given at MACC 2003 (Multi-Agency Craft Conference), a military gathering. http://www.marinejettech.com/media/MJTC%20Slide%20Show.PDF 11 Sept. 2003 I noticed Bombardier recently (August 26, 2003) patented a marine drive that is "sort of" composed of an outboard power head mounted to a horizontal plate above a well near the back of the boat. The lower unit steers and trims independent of the upper unit (upper unit stays fixed). Basic installation remotely resembles an L Drive. See U.S. Patent #6,609,939 http://patft.uspto.gov/netahtml/srchnum.htm You will need a tiff viewer to see the images. 11 Sept 2003 I noticed Bombardier patented a high performance skeg (lowest fin of drive). The patent discusses their drag reduced design. U.S. Patent 6,558,213 Issued 6 May 2003. 11 Sept 2003 Orbital Engines has established a nice U.S. web site illustrating their technologies, intellectual property and other information that includes some market research type information. http://www.orbeng.com 11 Sept 2003 I noticed Pursuit Dynamics has a new technical paper out on their steam drive. I dont recall seeing this paper before.. Jet Age Steam Power for Marine Propulsion printed in Ship Design and Operation for Environmental Sustainability http://www.netstoreonline.co.uk/pursuit/design.pdf.pdf 10 Sept. 2003 I stumbled onto Dynacam, a new swashplate style engine targeting the kitplane and marine industries. http://www.dynacam.com 30 May 2003 Found a great collection of boat propulsion images that includes some data on the photos. Lots of European drives at: http://boatdesign.net/gallery/index.php?cat=528 also the Bombardier / OMC /Evinrude / Johnson sell off continues. In early April (Apr.3) they announced the sell off of the recreational division including above lines and Sea Doo. The press has covered the decision extensively, listing the Bombardier family as a potential significant shareholder in the new operation to which they claimed over 30 interested participants requesting information. No clear winners have yet been announced. The entire process and situation to date is nicely summed up in: Bombardier to Sell off its Recreational Division Boat & Motor Dealer May 2003 Pgs. 26-30. (note there are no pages 27-28, is just an insert card) also noticed Don Robertson's page has a nice thorough list of international inboard (engine) builders. http://www.yachtsales.com/ibmanuf.html 29 May 2003 Stumbled onto several drives today including: the "High Performance Kort Sterndrive" in the UK at: http://www.kortpropulsion.com/sterndrive.htm Is for high speed vessels up to 450 HP. and Rice Speed and Thrust Propeller Nozzles (ducts for drives) at: http://olds.com.au/marine/nozzles/Default.htm http://olds.com.au/marine/nozzles/thrust.html they are said to increase thrust and efficiencies and Sykes Hydromaster Steerable Marine Drives 50 to 150 horsepower hydraulic drives for slow moving vessels. http://www.shipsmachinery.com/page13.html and Kaplan and Associates Hydraulic Outboard Drives for boats and barges. http://www.alkaplan.com/drives and Q-SPD Surface Drive, a 1500 horsepower surface drive made from composite materials (no corrosion) in Auckland. New Zealand by Propulsion Alternatives Ltd. http://www.q-spd.com and France Helices Surface Drive System (SDS) http://perso.wanadoo.fr/shmu.graphiste/francehelices/sdsuk.htm http://www.europeanmarine.co.uk/page51.htm and France Helice Surf Drive Surfacing Drive http://perso.wanadoo.fr/shmu.graphiste/francehelices/sduk.htm and Bog Hog Mud Motors for shallow running http://www.boghogmudmotors.com 28 May 2003 ZF Trimax Ring Drive introduced at Miami Boat Show 2003 V-Drive with minimal extension of propeller for tunnel drives. http://ZF-Marine.com/News/NPageDetail.cfm?UF=1&P=RingDrive-1.cfm&Y=2003 28 May 2003 Posted parts book cover of an old late 1960's drive from Sweden called the Monark - Crescent AB from Uppsala Sweden on our site at: http://www.rbbi.com/white/drives/crescent/crescent.jpg It rotated in the transom to steer and had a tractor drive (prop faced forward). 27 May 2003 Stumbles onto SCS Gearbox Inc surface drive looks sort of like an Arneson drive http://www.scsgearbox.com/stern.htm Is also called Sage #8 stern drive was designed by Mike Sage Has four inches true vertical trim adjustment. 7 May 2003 Brunswick put out a press release today on Mercury Marine's alternative fuel engine development program for the U.S. Military. http://www.corporate-ir.net/ireye/ir_site.zhtml?ticker=BC&script=410&layout=-6&item_id=410349 3 Apr 2003 Bombardier announced plans to sell its Recreation Division (boats and motors), probably to the Bombardier family. 20 Feb 2003 Logging two recent stern drive water ingestion articles Engine Blocks Choke on Water BoatUS Vol. VIII Jan 2003 Pgs.24-25 talks about the recent MerCruiser problems, an August 2001 MerCruiser service bulletin # 2001-13. Discusses efforts MerCruiser and Volvo have taken to address the problem and how it occurs. Mercury execs address Bravo 3, Optimax problems Soundings Trade Only Jan 2003 Pg. 16 discusses the Bravo 3 water ingestion problems, the special turbulator design, warm water manifolds and dry joint risers Mercury will be using in the future. Fred Brightbill president of Mercury's Integrated Operations Division says it "has totally eliminated the problem." **************** 24 Dec 2002 Waterjet Technology Professional Boatbuilder October 2000 http://www.jetpac.us/Press/wjpdf.pdf Nice article on current status of marine waterjet technologies Is posted by OPS. ******* 23 Dec 2002 Two-stroke versus four-stroke continued Technical Corner Boat & Motor Dealer Nov. 2002 Ralph Lambrecht An excellent continuation of the discussion started in the April 2002 issue. Both engine types continue to evolve and no clear winner has been seen. Two strokes have been extremely resilient in many design variables. The general public still thinks they are dirty engines, but certain designs can run very clean. ********** 18 Dec 2002 Engine emission STAR Ratings Star Quality: What do the star ratings on your engine mean? Boat Motor Doctor by Grid Michal Go Boating Feb 2003 Pgs. 22-25. This article does an excellent job of explaining the STAR system of labeling engines by their emission levels and provides some insight into the history and reasoning of the system. It also points out manufacturers sometimes select the two star rating when the engine is very near of possibly just into the three star category to not receive a bad rating in an inspection if everything is not up to par. RBBI related comment Emissions levels have significantly effected drive design and possibly also had major impact on other areas of drive design by removing resources, dollars and people from those areas. **************************************************************** Note: Above this point (prior to 18 Dec. 2002 , postings are listed in reverse chronological order (most recent postings first). Below this point they are listed in chronological order (oldest posting first). *********************************************** Hydromarine .pdf paper Hydraulic marine drive based on Rexroth pumps & motors http://www.rexroth.com/riq/1999/riq.1999-3/en/article11.pdf Bow and Stern Thrusters on Sport boats uses joystick "User friendly, thrusters standard on Maxum 23's Soundings Trade Only Feb 2001 pg 36 Active Noise Cancellation Silence is golden for Volvo engine manufacturer Soundings Trade Only Feb 2001 pg 9 MerCruiser Blacktrac transmission Swing shift (MerCruiser's Black trac transmission Trailer boats Feb 1997 pg 92 Thomas R. Stanely U.S. Patent 5,186,666 is another outboard/stern drive standoff and lift mechanism Worlds first fuel cell boat Hydra hauls 20 passengers German cooperative effort International Boat Industry Aug-Sept 2000 Page 4 New propulsion technology may have trouble penetrating market Boating Industry International Apr 2001 pgs 31-32 On OPS jet drive Cites Honda saying it takes them 3 years just to develop a marketable 8 HP motor. Mentions 1980's OMC Seadrives that bracketed to the back Disposal of Old Boats a Problem Boating Industry International Apr 2001 pgs 43-45 Mostly focuses on the issue in Europe CEC Volvo "in leg" two speed http://www.c-e-c.co.uk Mercury MerCruiser Racing integrated transom http://www.rbbi.com/company/bc/2001/transom/transom.htm Volvo Penta Ocean Series XDP composite drive http://www.rbbi.com/company/volvo/cdrive.htm Quote on reluctance to change What Campbell's new chief needs to know by Louis Lavelle Business Week June 25, 2001 Pg.60 "Partly, its the curse of size - any product change entails a massive capital investment that makes even modest improvements seems like giant risks. Thus, few if any ideas are carried through to execution. Enhancing Outboard Jet Performance excellent article on outboard jet technology http://www.pgc.state.pa.us/Fish/sepoct99/jetboard.htm Big Noise for a Quiet Giant International Boat Industry magazine Aug/Sept 2001 Pgs 18-20 Excellent review of Yamaha 225 Hp four-stroke outboard. Details attempts to claim part of stern drive market Includes European dealer survey comparing characteristics of outboards and stern drives *************************************************************** NOTE ON JULY 10, 2002 THE BURNS JET, PURSUIT DYNAMICS INFO IN THIS AREA WAS MOVED TO ITS OWN PAGE. www.rbbi.com/company/pursuit/pursuit.htm A COPY OF THE ORIGINAL MATERIAL WAS LEFT HERE FOR REFERENCE. An Australian drive invented by Dr. Alan Burns and initially funded by Carnegie Corporation Limited was sold to Pursuit Dynamics (in the UK) and had a IPO in May of 2001. http://www.carnegiecorp.com.au/marinedrvproj.html http://globalarchive.ft.com/globalarchive/icon/articles.html?id=010914014570&query=Pursuit+Dynamics The Burns Jet Drive is intended for leisure and light commercial vessels. It appears to be based upon injecting steam in the middle of a duct below the boat. When the steam enters the cold water, it collapses, pulling additional water through the ring, basically pulling the vessel along. http://www.businessweekly.co.uk/news/view_article.asp?article_id=5091 John Gunn is said to be a major investor A very extensive investor report on the drive is available from the "I agree" link at the bottom of this page http://www.numiscorp.com/deals/64280cl_all.html In July 2002, I noticed the group now has a website: http://www.pursuitdynamics.com New Propulsion System Aims to Revolutionize Market International Boat Industry June/July 2002 Pg. 7 Reports the drive could be ready for sea trials by this November. Pursuit Dynamics Executive Director, John Heathcote told IBI, when they can meet the efficiencies of two and four stroke outboards they can go to market. He estimates pricing would be one-half that of an outboard. They floated on the stock exchange last month and raised 4 million pounds. They are now looking for a joint venture partner with their own distribution, maintenance and service network. The column included a photo of Mr. Heathcote. ** Pursuit Makes Good Progress With Marine Propulsion Test Programme Business Weekly (a UK publication) 10 July 2002 Reports on their accelerated test program ** Patents from several jurisdictions were issued surrounding the device in late 2001 and early 2002. WO 0194197 issued Dec. 13, 2001 Australia AU6366001World Patent System Great Britain GB02045037 issued 26 Feb. 2002 Most of the text and drawings for the World Patent can be viewed from the European Patent Office system. http://ec.espacenet.com/espacenet enter: Pursuit Dynamics in the company search box to find it. ********************************************** Running Tide Yachts has a nice site on drive development including an ongoing belt drive design effort soliciting public historical input. http://www.runningtideyachts.com/power Hoffmasters Power Position Paper (Merc - Volvo drive comparison) http://www.hoffmasters.com/power.html ******* Not exactly drives, but Nov 19, 2001 Time Magazine Inventions article mentions two marine vessel/propulsion units Easy Rider by Klem Flying Boats is sort of a small aiplane looking hull riding on a bow mounted water ski for very smooth rides to 80 mph. It uses ground effect and is powered by an inboard, 175-horsepower Mazda 13b rotary engine, multi-speed transmission and surface piercing prop. http://www.klemflyingboats.com article also references the PowerSki jetboard (powered surfboard by Bob Montgomery to be available in mid 2002. It is powered by a small flat engine driving a water jet. http://www.powerski.com We initially covered this unit at Boating Week 2000. http://www.rbbi.com/folders/show/bw2000/lake/boards.htm ******** Mercury Marine / Brunswick launched a new thruster system that can be controlled by a ball (resembling a joy stick method). Sea Ray calls it Precision Pilot and Maxum calls it Control Max Docking System. The system is reviewed in the article below. Ball Control. International Boat Industry. Oct. 2001. Pgs. 25-26. Maxum's version was a joint project between the Bonnette Design Group, Brunswick Research and U.S. Marine. It won a Bronze in the Industrial Designers Society of America IDEA 2001. http://www.idsa.org/whatis/seewhat/idea2001/winners/B9058.htm Bonnette Design http://www.bonnettedesign.com ***************** Total Control Marine Systems has trolling motors that insert directly into pontoon boat pontoons. U.S. Patents #5,401,195 and #6,325,683. Total Control Marine http://www.totalcontrolmarine.com ***************** Bombardier has several patents on a system of two recessed trolling motors in corners of the transom for improved maneuvering. U.S. Patents #6,299,493, 6,305,994, 6,322,405, 6,322,406. ******************* A new Power Vent drive patent issued Dec 4, 2001. It covers a bow propulsion system operating in conjunction with the Power Vent tunnel drive. U.S. Patent #6,325,010 ******************************** Scratching the Surface Popular Mechanics June 2000 pgs 38-39 covers Power Vent drive ********************** 15 Feb 2002 Volvo Penta Press Release announces Ocean Series XDP drive (composite). Points out lighter weight and salt water resistance. Targets ocean fishing market. It won the Miami Boat Show innovation award. ****************** In March 2002 I notice Yamaha's new 225 HP four-stroke can connect to standard portable computers for readouts, trouble shooting and control. Their quote is below .... "The sophisticated diagnosis system developed by Yamaha for its latest outboards is also a featured the new F225. Further more a simple plug-in link to a personal computer displays a running history of the engine’s use and performance, making easy work of maintenance and servicing. In addition, a comforting fail-safe system keeps the engine running at reduced ‘get you home’ speed, in the unlikely event should a problem be detected by any of the engine’s main sensors. Safe guarding the engine and of course it’s users." ****************** March 12, 2002 Brunswick was awarded U.S. Patent 6,354,892 for a sensor based prop guard. Full details are on our 2002 Prop Guard Update page http://www.rbbi.com/invent/guard/propg/updates/2002/prop2002.htm ****************** Dec 25, 2001 U.S. Patent 6,332,818 for a surfacing propulsion system awarded to Futuretech Technologies Ltd. of Kent, GB will take some more time for me to review. Just wanted to include it here for the moment so we did not lose it. *************** March 26, 2002 U.S. Patent 6,361,387 for a marine propulsion apparatus with dual drive shafts extending from a forward end of an engine. awarded to Daniel Clarkson (MerCruiser). Assigned to Brunswick. Engine is mounted in rear of boat with output shaft facing the bow. Power is split to two rearward shafts (one running along each side of engine). Each shaft drives one propeller. Unit acts as a set of twin engines and the single engine can be mounted further rearward to improve center of gravity and provide more usable space near the back of the boat. The patent cites and discusses "Smallcraft Propulsion" by Robert W. Hobbs, published in Popular Boating Magazine in 1962. The article details 25 different arrangements of marine propulsion. ******************** U.S. Patent Application # 2002/0023579 Filed 28 February 2002 High speed electric watercraft James Profitt, Joseph Peek, Kayo Motesenbocker, Marvin Motsenbocker High speed electric motor propelled recreational water craft. Body of craft rises above water on outriggers (skis). ************** U.S. Patent Application 2001/0041482 Filed November 15, 2001. Marine Motor Drive Assembly Glen D. Foreman, Sandy UT. Marine mud drive motor for running in very shallow water. Drive fits near top of transom and shaft angles down to surface of water. Is for use in marshes,etc. Is an example of the niche type motors forecast in our earlier review. ********* Is it a Merc, a Yamaha or Both? Soundings Trade Only online April 11, 2002 Article reports rumors of a collaboration between Mercury and Yamaha to allow Mercury to sell Yamaha's big 225 HP four stroke outboard. Even says project may have a name, OF 225 Razorback. Neither firm will confirm. U.S. Yamaha operations are not in favor as they strongly compete with Mercury. The deal is said to be made directly with Japan executives. Is an example of how the industry is aging. Moving more toward alliances than direct competitive innovation. ***************** Product launches, deals marked the big Miami shows Soundings Trade Only April 2002. Pgs. 40-41. Volvo Penta debuted its Ocean Series composite drive. They are hoping to move some ocean sportfishing boats from outboards over to their stern drive. "We want to give the transom back to the fisherman", said Clint Moore, Volvo Penta of the America's president and CEO. Same article also announced relationship between Mercury Racing and All Star Engine Company, Inc. to produce All Star's aluminum 708 engine. It is a fuel injected V8 targeted at the high perf marine market, but Mercury plans to extend it to commercial and non marine applications (auto racing). Is an example of potential coming of age of large marine aluminum engines. ********************** Two Stroke Conventional Wisdom by Ralph Lambrecht Boat & Motor Dealer April 2002 Article discusses two stroke DFI vs. four strokes and ends praising two stroke DFI. Closing sentence, "You might even see it on some future stern drives." is inline with his comments of using outboard engines inboard a few years ago. ************* Apr 2002 Dunnrite Props has a great page on drive hub design http://www.dunnriteprops.com/proptips_6.html ***************** U.S. Patent 6,383,043 Vertical Trim System for Marine Outdrives by Scott Heston. Issued 7 May 2002. Another vertical trim system for stern drives. I think he had another patent listed in one of our earlier papers *************** 13 May 2002 Intellectual property barries to entry by outsiders are gradually becoming more significant. Brunswick, Sanshin (Yamaha) and others are assembling a portfolio of dozens of drive and engine component patents, that when taken all together are becoming increasing difficult for an outsider to navigate and enter the industry. Between themselves (especially between Brunswick and Sanshin) they tend to overlook infringement problems (because they need each others technologies), but I suspect they would not be so forgiving of outsiders. ************* Is it time to go back to pre-rigging Sherwood on the issues Boat and Motor Dealer May 2002 Pg. 9 Article covers the marketing aspects surrounding packages (outboard motor mounted on or sold with boat from builder) and pre-rigging (builder sets up boat for a specific type of outboard). Those issues include: inventory, pricing, marketing, dealer work load, sales of loose engines, etc. This excellent article focuses on promoting pre-rigging over packaging, but contemplating it, one begins to see the drive manufacturers are putting a lot of effort and focus on marketing techniques, perhaps at the expense of innovation? The article above was followed up by an article composed of reader comments on the original article. Dealers respond to pre-rigging column Sherwood on the issues Boat and Motor Dealer July 2002 Pgs. 4,6.44 It even quoted my comments to him. ************************** 27 June 2002 IBI released story that PSI (Pulse Drive Systems International), the surface drive manufacturer has teamed with Protec, a German engineering firm. Tony Mills president of PSI says they can make several hundred of each model vs. the current 30 to 40. They anticipate more collaboration with builders. *********** 1 July 2002 Soundings Trade Only online story says Briggs & Stratton to re-enter outboard market with a 5 HP four-stroke. ********* 3 July 2002 IBI News reports Sealine (builder of big boats Brunswick recently purchased in the UK) is adding Arneson surface drives and Fabio-Buzzi tunnel drives to its list of options on their new 11.9 meter C39 Coup. The tunnel drives were built by ZF Trimax, a joint venture with ZF. The model used at the launch was powered by Volvo Penta KAD 300 stern drives. Bet that gave Brunswick some heartburn. The story includes a nice quote from Fabio Buzzi on the need for hull modifications for the tunnel drive: " Far from seeing the need for a builder to make significant changes to the hull and create a dedicated mould tool as a disadvantage, Buzzi sees the design of power systems and hulls from one drawing board as the future, comparing it to the kind of integration achieved in the automotive industry. "They have integrated the man, with the car, with the engine, with the wheels and this is where we have to go at the moment." ************* Heavy Fuel Powered Propulsion (less explosive fuel) http://www.boating-industry.com/article.asp?IndexID=6630190 From March 2000 issue of Boating Industry Sonex and Innovation Marine Corporation are working in this field. *************************** 10 July 2002 I noticed a web site in the UK for Yellow Fin a VSD (Variable Surface Drive) for high speed boats. Its a little hard to understand what is going on from the web site. It may be an automatic shifting two (or more) speed surface drive? http://www.yellowfin.com *********** 25 July 2002 Soundings Trade Only Online reports Bombardier has a government contract to work on non-gasoline powered outboard for military applications. Bombardier Recreational Products of Sturtevant, Wis., has signed a contract with the federal government to develop a non-gasoline-burning outboard that can be used for various military applications. Think the info came from Vince McLeod, manager of special accounts and government affairs for Bombardier’s outboard engines division. The Navy has a goal of removing gasoline from its ships by 2010. Bombardier will work on modifying Ficht direct injection technology to use as JP5, JP8 and Jet A jet fuels; plus heating oil, diesel fuel no. 1 and kerosene. Initial focus will be on JP5 and JP8. They have already tested some V-6's. Will now move to field and endurance testing. McLeod says developing economies where gasoline is in short supply might be other possible recreational and commercial users of these engines. *************** U.S. Patent 6,425,788 issued July 30, 2002 AB R&D Marine OY of Finland Hydraulically shifted variable pitch propeller for outboards and stern drives. **************** August 2002 Libwil in Australia has a phase controller continuously variable pitch propeller running in a 50HP Honda 4-stroke outboard. They report it can go from full forward to full reverse in 3.5 seconds. Their web site has an excellent animated gif image of the prop stroking. http://www.libwil.com.au ************** U.S. Patent 6,431,927 issued August 13, 2002 Independent Inventor, Michael Sage, describes a transom mounted drive with independently adjustable depth of operation and attitude (trim is independent of prop depth) for high speed craft. **************** U.S. Patent 6,435,923 issued August 20, 2002 Bombardier Two stroke transmission with reverse mounts in the gimbal housing area of a stern drive. ****************** U.S. Patent 6,439,937 issued August 27, 2002 Volvo Penta Two speed planetary transmission mounts "in-the-leg" of a stern drive. Seems like there has been considerable action in the transmission side recently (two speeds, variable props, etc). ************************ Sept. 2002 We encountered a 1991 U.S. Patent 5,024,639 for a z-drive (stern drive) that used a 360 degree steerable lower gearcase. Additionally, it could be rotated up out of the water sideways (like some of the very early MerCruiser stern drives). The drive has minimal steering torque and was invented by an Italian. In profile and function, it somewhat resembles the early versions of the hydraulic Shark drive from Hydromarine. ***************** U.S. Patent 6,458,003 Issued Oct. 1, 2002 Dynamic trim of a marine propulsion system William Krueger Assigned to Bombardier Bombardier's version of an autotrim system using some technologies that were available years ago. Interestingly, it allows operators to select what they wish to optimize: speed, fuel efficiency, etc. ********* 15 Oct 2002 MerCruiser Australia announces first truly integrated water jet package with engine, reduction and water jet for 120 to 260 HP gas and diesel MerCruiser engines. It has an optional trimmable nozzle. The package uses a gearbox designed and built by Doen Waterjets of Braeside (Victoria) Australia. IBI News coverage of the announcement above: http://www.ibinews.com/ibinews/newsdesk/20020915101434ibinews.html ************* U.S. Patent 6,468,119 issued 22 Oct. 2002 Composite stern drive assembly Extensive patent (25 pages and 49 claims) on Volvo's new composite stern drive. ****************** Stealth Propulsion International Ltd. has a "RingProp". A ring around the circumference of the prop is connected to the blades. They say it improves safety by eliminating the sharpest area of the blades, reduces cavitation and improves maneuverability. http://www.onwater.com/ringprop.html Continued work in prop guard areas may one day change the design of marine drives? See our propeller guard page for current developments http://www.rbbi.com/invent/guard/propg/updates/2002/prop2002.htm ************************** Nov 2002 Nye Thermodynamics They are developing turbine powered jet boats http://www.nyethermodynamics.com Web site has several news clips and videos ************* Nov 21, 2002 Emission Focus Moves from Engine Gasses to Noise All quiet on the western front? European Boatbuilder Oct 2002 pgs. 40-43 Article talks about efforts to develop uniform boat noise emissions standards for Europe vs. piecemeal standards. The European Union recently accepted the SoundBoat proposal. ************ Increased Remote Data Access Key to a New Door International Boat Industry Nov. 2002 pgs. 24-26 Article discusses Volvo Penta's SeaKey system. The system has a wide variety of applications among them, easy transfer of engine data to remote troubleshooters. They refer to this field as TELEMATICS. *************** U.S. Patent 6,478,646 Drive device of inboard and outboard drives Assigned to Yanmar Diesel Patent covers a through hull drive where something similar to a non-trimmable sterndrive mounts on engine bell housing then goes straight down through the hull. Several drive designs have explored this area in the past. **************** U.S. Patent 6,468,120 Issued 22 Oct. 2002 Single cylinder trim / tilt assembly Assigned to Volvo Penta Stern drive with one cylinder trim/tilt ***********


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