Jets and weeds

Discussion in 'Jet Drives' started by claydog, Jul 5, 2011.

  1. claydog
    Joined: Dec 2010
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    claydog Junior Member

    I regularly fish a very large (10,000 acres) an impoundment lake that is full of stumps close enough to the surface that make any speeds much above steerage with an outboard risky. There are also a lot of near surface weed beds that are difficult to avoid in many areas that also plays hell on outboards. My thought is to adapt a small PWC jet drive to my 14’ aluminum boat to avoid the stumps, but I’m not sure on how it would do crossing a weed bed at 10-15 mph. Any thoughts would subject would be helpful .
  2. thudpucker
    Joined: Jul 2007
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    thudpucker Senior Member

    Our jet boat in AK was stopped quickly, frequently and often by weeds.
    We carried tools and Insulated Waders in the boat for that reason.

    My Jet experiences were not what I thought they were. You might be better off to have a good sturdy prop setup.

    I lived on a Stump lake in Louisiana. Finally Learned to go slow and let the outboard kick up. Life's better when your problems solve themselves.
    Forget the Jet!
  3. anthony goodson
    Joined: Mar 2007
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    anthony goodson Senior Member

    Thud's right.
  4. claydog
    Joined: Dec 2010
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    claydog Junior Member

    That's what I suspected, thanks for the input.
  5. mohawk
    Joined: Jun 2011
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    mohawk Junior Member

    The jetski units go well, but HATE junk in the grill. You can skim over the weed if its below the surface 150mm or so but youd want atleast a 7.5 inch 2stage pump for some comfort. Stomp grates are also very handy for clearing weed.
  6. Tahoerover
    Joined: Jul 2011
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    Tahoerover Junior Member

    I have a small 8' Kawasaki jet boat. It uses a 750cc twin and a jet ski pump. Trips over the side to clear weeds are common.

    Attached Files:

  7. Stumble
    Joined: Oct 2008
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    Location: New Orleans

    Stumble Senior Member

    Take a look at the Louisiana engine called a Go-Devil. They were designed to run swamps and marshes. Many even have shrouded props to minimize tree damage. They are designed specifically to work in shallow water full of mud, much, and grass. Heck I have seen them bounce off of stumps without breaking a sweat. Though a mallet becomes a maintenance tool when you run the blade onto rocks.
  8. Surfszup
    Joined: Jul 2011
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    Surfszup Junior Member

    Go devil sounds like the way to go!

    I don't know the name but my brother in law was putting together something similar for duck hunting coastal marsh areas of Mass. Looked like the same setup.
  9. Village_Idiot
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Village_Idiot Senior Member

    If the water is relatively clear (you can see to a depth of a foot or two), I'd suggest a (pocket) tunnel boat with outboard/propeller. I run a flat-bottom aluminum boat with an elevated center console, so I have very good visibility. With the tunnel setup, I can run in six inches of water swinging a 14-inch prop on a 115hp Merc. If I see a stump, I swerve around it. If I can't see it, I don't hit it. Only issue is when the sun is low on the horizon, then shallow areas are harder to pick out in the water (I wear polarized sunglasses any time I am at the helm). Mostly I run rivers and even though visibility is often less than six inches, the stumps that are a few inches below the water leave telltale V marks on the water and I can avoid them.

    However, I don't run through thick beds of vegetation, so can't advise on how well the tunnel prop does in that situation; at any rate, it will be easier to clean and more forgiving than a jet setup in the weeds.

    If you have very turbid water and you need to go fast, get an airboat. If you don't need to go fast, go with a Go-Devil setup (I've driven a few, and they are quite a bit slower than an outboard of similar hp). Cheapest solution is to go slow, as mentioned by another poster, that is assuming that your time is cheap.

    I will re-iterate that being able to see the stumps is paramount. If the water is relatively clear, an elevated helm will help you more than anything else. Mine is raised twelve inches above the boat floor, and it makes a world of difference in visibility and being able to see hazards.
  10. rasorinc
    Joined: Nov 2007
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    rasorinc Senior Member

    Stumble is right about go-devils. another thought is to raise your outboard up and put a surface piercing prop on it. 1/2 in the water and 1/2 in the air.

  11. thudpucker
    Joined: Jul 2007
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    thudpucker Senior Member

    I saw a Go-Devil in LA that was a 350 Chev V-8 powered. Didn't see it run, but you could see Mud and Weed parts all over the foialige around the slough it was parked in.
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