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Old 03-19-2017, 02:45 PM
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Transom Step

I have been reading over the past few days (probably too much) on a number of sites where people have made a "step" at the transom by cutting out the bottom of their "V" between the stringers and making a small bulkhead between 6"-12" forward. Anyone here have experience with this? I have a few questions.....

What is the purpose of this "step"?
What are the benefits?
How does it work?
Is it like adding a stand-off box or stern jack?
Does it clean up the turbulent water coming off the hull?
Does it compliment a raised "X"?
What are the drawbacks?
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Transom Step-step-design.jpg  
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Old 03-20-2017, 10:28 PM
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I am not sure what you a proposing. Some boats, especially bass boats have a flat area at the transom called a pad. It is thought this improves performance.
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Old 03-20-2017, 11:01 PM
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No, I'm not looking at a pad. I suppose a more correct term is "transom notch". In reference to the above posted diagram, the section outlined in red dotted lined is removed from the hull. This shortens the running surface and creates a larger gap to the lower portion of the sterndrive leg.
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Old 03-21-2017, 02:56 PM
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I cannot see how such a thing would improve performance. It would only create turbulence where you really want clean water flow. Maybe someone else here has a better understanding than I do.
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Old 03-21-2017, 06:09 PM
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It can improve top speed, but the angle of the upper portion of the step is critical, to keep the bow down, compensate for the lose of plane patch, yet not introduce more drag than desirable. As a rule, it effectively narrows the operational speed range quite a bit, but if top speed is the only goal and you can engineer a good step, it's a worthwhile modification. Only some hull forms can receive a benefit from this type of arrangement and again, it will have other, less desirable impacts on the performance envelop.
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Old 03-21-2017, 06:15 PM
Mr Efficiency Mr Efficiency is offline
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Presumably the idea is to gain an increment of extra speed, though the height of the drive would need to be right. The gain would come from the prop working in water with less forward momentum. and maybe an overall reduction in wetted area. Potential problems could be porpoising and slower planing.
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Old 03-21-2017, 08:15 PM
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From the Donzi site... this is my newfound understanding:

I'm told this was a common practice for deep V hulls (eg. 24* deadrise). It is often done, in conjunction with a delta pad but, not always.
It apparently facilitates the raising of the X dimension (which reduces drag) and allows the higher set drive to run in less disturbed water as the distance from the transom to the prop is increased. The upper portion of the notch is kept parallel to the keel and is of little consequence as it is no longer a significant part of the running surface.

Results of the modification are felt only at speed. The downside is a reduction in running length at speed which is detrimental to handling in big water. The benefit is greater speed through reduced drag while not sacrificing prop "bite". Apparently, re-balancing the boat may be necessary to adjust for the potential of porposing but there is negligible effect on planeing as this is usually only about 24" wide (12" each side of the centerline of the keel and a common distance between stringers) and 12" forward from the transom. So, there is plenty of surface area to help generate lift.

Lastly, I'm told It is usually done on larger single engine/drive performance boats as the negative effects are proportionally less pronounced. Eg. a 28' hull rides like a 27' hull at speed in rough water vs. a 16' hull acting like a 15' hull in similar conditions. It is more common these days to accomplish the same goals with out the negative attributes by using a standoff or extension box.
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Old 03-22-2017, 09:58 AM
Joakim Joakim is offline
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The effect is about the same as having setback and center of gravity more backwards. So the boat will have higher trim (shorter planing waterline) and the distance from transom to propeller will be bigger.

Maybe there is some benefit for having the rest of the hull behind the "new transom" at low speeds, especially when getting up to plane.
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Old 03-22-2017, 12:22 PM
Konstanty Konstanty is offline
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Will it be good for the resistance to pitching?
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