This 20-foot-8-inch fiberglass Lund model has a beam of 8 feet. This was a real-world test – the prop evaluations were conducted with two people aboard, a full 55-gallon fuel tank and Kirsammer’s typical load of tournament gear. Baseline performance was established using a 19-pitch Mercury Tempest® Plus prop Kirsammer has been running on the boat. We then tested a 20-pitch Mercury Revolution 4®, a 21-pitch Mercury Racing Revolution 4® XP, a 22-pitch Mercury Racing Bravo I® LT, and a 22-pitch Mercury Racing Bravo I® FS. Two engine heights were also tested — the factory position that was the second hole from the top on his engine bracket, or 1 inch above boat bottom, and the fourth hole from the top, or 2.5 inches above boat bottom. Matt preferred the lower engine height for overall boat control. Check out our data chart to see all of the results.
The best overall performance was delivered by the 22-pitch Mercury Racing Bravo I® FS at the stock engine height; gaining 1.3 mph on top end speed, improved fuel economy, quicker hole shot, and much better handling at speed. One of the great attributes of switching from a three-blade to a four-blade propeller is the improved boat stability on top end and in rough water, which can give the driver much more confidence. The tuned barrel of the Mercury Racing Bravo I® FS also generated the perfect amount of lift for this application. The Bravo I LT, which has a longer, flared barrel, had slightly too much stern lift for this boat-and-motor combination. Both Mercury Racing Bravo prop models, however, performed better than the Revolution 4 models, with quicker hole shot and the ability to hold the boat on plane at lower speeds, an important attribute for a pro angler who is often out in rough conditions.
Want to download the test data? Click here.