LA Boat Show Recap

Mercury’s booth at the Los Angeles Boat Show.
KMG displayed their 22-foot Phantom hull with an OptiMax 300XS outboard fitted with the Sport Master gearcase. The KMG catamaran in the background is powered by twin 2.5 EFI Drag race outboards.

Brad Halpin and I recently returned from the Los Angeles Boat Show. (Brad is one of Mercury Racing’s technical experts who is responsible for helping boat builders learn to properly install Mercury Racing propulsion; I’m a sales guy.)  Mercury Racing products, including the all new 1100 sterndrive, were on display in  Mercury’s booth. Boat builders featured Mercury Racing outboards and sterndrives, including the 1350, in their booths as well.

For years, the LA show ran through two weekends for a total of nine days! Furthermore, the LA show was scheduled at the same time as the Miami International Boat Show. Exhibitors such as ourselves were challenged to support two shows simultaneously.

The recession then changed everything. Now, the LA show is about two thirds of its original size. This year, it ran March 17-20, one month after the Miami show. Boat builders and suppliers were upbeat and anxious to show their latest creations to the West Coast market. Read more

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Application Dependant – Part 2

Outboards for larger single and multiple engine boats (continued from Application Dependant – Part 1)

In my previous blog, I focused on smaller, single engine outboard applications where power-to-weight is a very important factor.  Here, I will discuss larger, single and multi-engine fishing and sport boats.

OptiMax 300XS powered Lake & Bay flats boat.
Triple Verado 350 SCi powered Fountain 38 Center Console.

Let’s start with the larger single engine boats. If you are rigging a flats or bay boat and intend to use it to pursue fish – an OptiMax works just fine. If you plan on getting a family sport boat for tubing/wake boarding or water skiing, the OptiMax is also an excellent choice. Those who prefer ultra quiet running qualities, with the creature comforts of digital throttle and shift and power steering, should go with a Verado or Pro FourStroke.

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Application Dependant – Part 1

Its boat show season and one of the most common questions we get from consumers is what type of engine is best for their boat. These questions are mainly in regard to outboards versus sterndrives or inboards. Not sure why – although I can take a guess and say it is due to the large variety of outboard options out there. Choices include two stroke or four stroke, various shaft lengths and gearcase styles available from numerous brand manufacturers. Various price promotions, extended warranties and insurance add to the complexity.

Mercury Marine offers outboard power options for virtually any applicaton.

It all boils down to application. What is your boating style? Tournament bass fishing, recreational bass, flats, bay boat fishing, go fast sport boating, poker running, tournament offshore angling, cruising, etc. Another question; what size boat are you looking at and who will be along for the ride? Read more

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Education (and Tuition)

48 MTI and 1350s during testing.

Sometimes education comes unexpectedly. When special designs or capabilities come together in a unique new way, surprises can occur. This just happened: In preparation for the Miami International Boat Show, MTI was testing one of its 48 Race/Pleasure catamarans powered with Mercury Racing’s 1350s and M8 drives.

Dry sump. I’ve written before about the purpose of dry sumping – efficiency. Here we have a 48 MTI with two dry sump M8 sterndrives. Plus two dry sump, quad cam, four valve engines making 1350 hp each. Between engines and drives, dry sump transmissions. Big power; big expectations!

As people sometimes do, the owner tried propellers from another manufacturer. Whang! Blade gone. We warned that these engines produce big fat monster torque (BFMT); we learned this lesson the hard way, too; we designed a special prop series just to handle it. However, this was not the education – just its preamble.
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“Thumbs Up, Miami!” from Fred K

Mercury Racing’s new 1100 drew raves in Miami!
This beautifully laid out Sunsation couldn’t be heard running because its 525 EFI engines were equipped with Racing’s X-haust systems. Ah, sweet silence at speed!

I would like to personally thank all those who came to Miami and visited Mercury Racing – in our Convention Center booth, at our customers’ displays, or on the water at Sea Isle Marina. From what you’ve told me, you like our new 1100 package. Me too.

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