Guests - If You want access to member only forums on HSO. You will gain access only when you sign-in or Sign-Up on HotSpotOutdoors.

It's easy - LOOK UPPER right menu.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
311Hemi

Motor in gear when towing?

44 posts in this topic

Do you guys put your motors in gear when towing to keep the prop from spinning? I have been doing this since I purchased my boat and always did it with my parents boat, but I am curious if it really needs to be done to keep from wearing the bearing out or heating them up out of water? It's kind a of pain to get the prop in the right position to put the motor in gear when it's shut off.

I guess I could always wrap the bungie cord for the transom saver around the prop instead of putting it in gear if it should in fact not be moving.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been experimenting with the same method since I often will fish alone. The only way I do it is if my trailer is close enough to the dock that I can jump in to stop the motor and trim the engine up before taking it out of the water. I never like to run my engine out of water, not even for a few seconds....just how I am. I think this method works great if the landing is deep enough to drive on, otherwise I just winch her up. I can and will hassle people if they powerload the boat the wrong way or just out of laziness. Because of this, I make sure that I am doing it the right way in order to not ruin the landing or get yelled at. A remote-controlled power winch would be the cat's meow for a solo fisherman. Good luck man!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry, I should have made this a little clearer. I guess I meant do you have the engine in gear when towing the boat, not loading. blush

I updated the original question!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have always traveled down the road with it in gear for the reasons you mentioned.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

what could it hurt?? it can only help by saving on bearing and gear life...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh, I see! I've never heard of this? Correct me if I'm wrong here. So your putting the motor in gear to prevent the prop from spinning while traveling which could cause the bearings to wear or heat up? Seems to make since.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've never had a problem trailering in neutral over the last 20 years. The lower unit gears in my motor are submerged in oil. The water pump runs off the drive shaft. When the motor is in neutral, the prop shaft turns but not the drive shaft. If you're concerned, pull it in neutral for a few miles and then feel the lower unit. If it's warm, put it in gear.

TC

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I always put it in reverse while towing it, just a habit

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I always put it in reverse while towing it, just a habit

Same here. It probably helps save some bearing wear.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Reverse will keep the motor locked, forward will let it bounce. We leave in nuetral, our prop won't spin on a 150, or even our 50 I don't think.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was told that if the prop turns going down the road that it wears shaft from being dry.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The mechanics I've talked to say it doesn't matter if you trailer with your boat in neutral or forward --- the prop spinning doesn't cause any problems, and shifting between neutral and forward with the motor off doesn't cause any problems.

I have heard that you shouldn't shift in or out of reverse unless the motor is running????

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i always leave the motor in neutral and my prop doesn't spin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have never put any of the five boats I've owned over the years in gear. I travel all over the place with mine. You need to realize that the lower gear lube will keep from heating up. Compared to run through the water, the friction is nothing out of the water. Having said that, it's up to you either will do.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As said, nothing "heats up." The gear lube keeps things moving. Think of it like towing a car behind a U-haul. Nothing is running, and you're not going to wear out the bearings on your car wheels from pulling it around in neutral. Let the wheels/props spin, it makes no difference. You'll sell that motor and repair many other parts before the bearings go just from free spinning.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From the Mercury site:

Quote:
Q: What precautions should I take when trailering my outboard powered boat with the engine attached?

A: Trailer your boat with the outboard tilted down (vertical operating position). Shift the outboard to forward gear. This prevents the propeller from spinning freely.

My Yamaha manual does not mention this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It really doesn't matter either way in my opinion.. you're not going to wear anything out by doing it or not doing it... so it's personal preference.

marine_man

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

its a given fact that bearings if moving will wearout. they wont heat prolly but will add unneeded wear..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That prop will spin more times in a ten minute ride on the lake at full throttle vs a 3 hour trailer ride.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the reasoning is not for the bearings, but for the outer propshaft seal that rely on water around it to keep cool. In theory, if the prop shaft is allowed to spin on the dry seal surface, it can heat and harden the seal surface. That being said, I guess I cant say that I've ever determined that the seals have wore out because of this. Then again, it's not really hard to put in gear. Im with marine_man, it's a personal preference. If I knew mine was spinning fast and freely, I'd put it in gear.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the reasoning is not for the bearings, but for the outer propshaft seal that rely on water around it to keep cool. In theory, if the prop shaft is allowed to spin on the dry seal surface, it can heat and harden the seal surface. That being said, I guess I cant say that I've ever determined that the seals have wore out because of this. Then again, it's not really hard to put in gear. Im with marine_man, it's a personal preference. If I knew mine was spinning fast and freely, I'd put it in gear.

This makes more sense! I think I will keep putting it in gear...thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i am 21 years old. and in my 15 years of looking at boats on the road I can't say I ever seen a prop turn because of the air. I thing the props are too hard spin just by air. and even more so behind a truck. so I don't think it matters if it in gear or not.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

in my 15 years of looking at boats on the road I can't say I ever seen a prop turn because of the air.

I've seen rotating props on numerous occasions...

marine_man

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Originally Posted By: kc0myy
in my 15 years of looking at boats on the road I can't say I ever seen a prop turn because of the air.

I've seen rotating props on numerous occasions...

marine_man

As have I and I always ask myself the original question I posted....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0



  • Posts

    • Have any of you guys tried the Stanley ribbit frogs?  I picked up a couple of packs at my local wally world for a $1 a pack.   On a side note I saw a video of Jacob Wheeler talking about using a buzzbait and putting a biffle bug on it instead of a skirt, he mentioned that they hit it better and hold on to it a little longer since there is some mass there.  I wonder if a zoom horny toad would work for that as well since the biffle bugs are expensive.
    • HAs anyone here used this software to map your lakes?  Has anyone downloaded the lakes that are on the shared cloud?  I have a hook 7 and some of the lakes around have been mapped, it would be nice to download them and use that instead of the other map.
    •   Is that the work around garmin uses to avoid licensing the Lowrance patent?    Or was the patent on something different?
    • I was on private land that I have shot 8 birds in 10 seasons.Over 300 acres of prime land by Caledonia but none in our group of 4 scored this year. Just makes me more excited for next year. Might try the last season but will probably be into fishing by that time. Good Luck to All.....
    • Love the zoom horny toads. Man they can have some vicious blowups. Im a huge fan of buzzbaits so to be able to use this frog like a buzzbait in some thick weeds is awesome.
    • Lilacs are really leafing out here in central MN.  On my few walks through the woods, the mushrooms have been few and far between: No more scarlet cups, no pheasant backs, no oysters. I haven't went to my morel spots because there's no hurry and I don't want to trample them, but I doubt they're up very far around here if the pheasant backs haven't even fruited. I'll be back out today before the rain checking on things, though. 
    •   Just stating the facts as they stand Bear.  You listen or read at all what the national NHL analysts are saying/writing about the Wild's present/recent past/future?  I've said before I love your postivity and I'm glad too that MN has an NHL team. Spin is required to hide the facts, spin is needed to turn what is not good and make it sound good, spin is needed to make it sound like you are doing your job well when in fact we are no closer than we were 3-4 years ago.  Seriously....any chump could have improved the team from what it was when Fletch took over...you and I could have done that. If you just look inside the box, wow we are much improved; but if you look outside the box and compare yourself to the rest of the league you realize we really have not climbed the ladder very much...16th, 15th, 14th, 13th, 12th, 11th, 10th in the NHL does not cut it for me...for you it does and thus our differences and our ability to argue/discuss this back and forth.
    • Your best angle of attack should come like this: Do you need to control your trolling motor with your sonar? if so you have 2 choices. Lowrance uses motor guide and H-bird goes with Minnkota. If that is not a requirement than the field is wide open. IMO don't go with a screen smaller than 9" with side imaging there is so much detail that its hard to see on a 7" screen. I'd stay away from garmin or any unit that doesn't have a true down scan ducer that uses software to produce a down scan image there is just too much stuff lost without it.   
    • It's a pop or in my case an ice tea bottle with several 1/8" holes near the bottom of the bottle.  I then roll up paper towels and get as many as I can stacked inside the bottle.  When I need to cough I unscrew the top and cough into it.  It definitely softens then noise to more of a rush of air sound.
    • I use the standard frogs (non-Popping) as i feel i can always pop a non-popping.  I do like to throw into cover and hit those pockets and open area's ... there is times when walking it really makes a big difference on strikes.  Can't wait for the season!!  i was just experimenting with the frogs and not bass fishing yet.   We will keep in touch and see how ya all are doing with the frogs this summer.  I am intrigued also with the Zoom Horny toad, ready to try those also.   Cret
  • Our Sponsors