Expanded MAX5 Propeller Offerings

Mercury Racing Propeller Manager Scott Reichow and Propeller Specialist and  Project Manager Nick Petersen  review  our expanded MAX5 propeller offerings.

New 15.25-inch-diameter MAX5 models offer 3-4 percent reduction in slip compared to the 15.00-inch models on select outboard and sterndrive applications that benefit from elevated transom heights.

The Mercury Racing MAX5 propeller, developed and handcrafted by Mercury Racing Propeller artisans, is designed for single- and multiple-engine applications, including the 400R outboard and the 600 SCi sterndrive. The Lab Finished MAX5 provides a measurable reduction in propeller slip (up to 12 percent). In fact, the MAX5 prop is so efficient builders are finding they can run it higher to take full advantage of engines fitted with the race-proven Sport Master gearcase.

Bigger is Better

New 15.25-inch-diameter MAX5 models offer 3-4 percent reduction in slip compared to the 15.00-inch models on select outboard and sterndrive applications that benefit from elevated transom heights. Half-inch pitch offerings enable engines to be dialed-in to their maximum rpm operating range for enhanced throttle response, optimized cruise fuel efficiency and optimal top speed.


The shortened exhaust barrel enhances the performance of single-engine bass boats and twin-engine catamarans by keeping the stern planted for a confidence-inspired ride, while the large 15.25-inch-diameter prop stays hooked up at extreme engine heights.

The new Mercury Racing MAX5 ST propeller is designed for the 4.6L V8 300R FourStroke outboard with Sport Master gearcase. The shortened exhaust barrel enhances the performance of single-engine bass boats and twin-engine catamarans by keeping the stern planted for a confidence-inspired ride, while the large 15.25-inch-diameter prop stays hooked up at extreme engine heights.

Initial test results are promising. A 300R FourStroke spinning a 31-inch pitch MAX5 ST prop powered a tournament-loaded Bullet 21 XRS bass boat to 97.5 mph with a mere 7 percent slip!

A 300R FourStroke spinning a 31-inch pitch MAX5 ST powered this tournament-loaded Bullet 21 XRS bass boat to 97.5 mph with a mere 7 percent slip!

All MAX5 propellers feature the Mercury-patented Performance Vent System® (PVS), which enables the user to fine-tune the amount of venting needed for quick planing.


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73 thoughts on “Expanded MAX5 Propeller Offerings”

  1. Looking at trying the Max5 st. I have a 21 foot Blazer bass boat with a 300xs stroker. I can turn my 31 bravo Xs around 6100. What pitch would I need in the new max 5 st. I have a 1.75 sport master do you recommend this prop for my application. Thanks.

    1. Jared,
      Having your speed will help us to understand if the 31″ pitch Bravo I XS would be the prop of choice. The Max 5 works great with the big Sport Master, it just might be to much prop for the smaller Sport Master.

      1. Scott,
        I can fish with a tournament load 87 mph. I also run from time to time a 28 promax. Turn the 28 promax and the 31 bravo 1xs the same rpms. The promax prop i have is stiff. Just wondering what pitch in the 5 blade I would run, and would you recommend it. I like the fact of the reduced slip.

        1. Jared,

          You are pretty close with the Bravo I XS. What is your measurement from prop shaft to boat bottom? The MAX5 ST works so well on the 300R Sport Master because it needs to be elevated higher due to the larger diameter. With your Sport Master, I don’t think you would be able to elevate the MAX5 enough for it to be effective. More blade area would most likely slow you down. The MAX5 really shines when prop shaft height is above boat bottom, give or take depending on setback and hull design.


          1. Nick,

            Thanks. I’ll look at my height when i get to my boat. I feel I can come up in height still with the bravo, at least a half inch. I ordered a Max 5 st form Jaco yesterday in 30 pitch. I want to try it. I think with my setup, i can raise the engine enough to run it. We will see. Only one way to find out right.

        2. I have a 2019 cougar ftd basscat with the 300r 4stroke . 1.75 sport master . What size 5 would I need . I’m running the bravo 1 xs in a 28 . 84.4 top speed not loaded . That’s running a little on the edge . Chine walk a little . That’s at 6200 rpm .

          1. Travis,

            That all sounds spot on, at 9% slip in your case and 10% slip from the dealer, I wouldn’t change a thing. For the chine walking, have you looked at balancing out the weight in the boat? It may be a learning process as that is a lot of motor for that boat. The MAX5 ST will give you even more lift than your Bravo, I don’t think it will improve handling. 6200 is the sweet spot for your motor.


  2. I was wondering what max 5 are they running on a 25 Baja outlaw with a 496ho/425 with a bravo out drive and what kind of price they are running for? I haven’t been able to find any info.

    1. Jeff,
      Typically, I would recommend the Bravo I FS geared towards the traditional vee-bottom because the shortened barrel offers great bow lift for 3-blade top end speeds. And we have run the Max 5 on our Baja test boat and loved it. Any authorized Mercury dealer can give you a price; Teague Marine has them in stock.

  3. I have a Charger 210 Elite, 1900lbs and I have a 300r on order. 50 gallon gas tank (usually run half full). Can you recommend a prop and pitch . Loaded boat weight approximately 3300-3500 lbs.
    Looking at Max ST, Bravo, Fury ?

    1. Tim,

      Congrats on the new boat, sounds like it is going to be a rocket. Because we are talking about an application that will be well over 85 mph, the MAX5 will be the prop of choice, but the Bravo I FS is a good and cost effective option. The MAX5 will be more fuel efficient at cruising speed, and have better top due to reduced slip. A ballpark guess at your top speed is 90, to get there you would run a 29.5 pitch MAX5 ST or a 31 pitch Bravo I FS. If you have the ability to test props before you buy, we will be able to dial you in more effectively.

  4. Good afternoon, I have been running a carbon fiber Yellowfin 24ce with hard top tower & a 400r. To date the best running propeller I have seen is the Bravo1 fs 21p and the bravo 1 LT in a 21.5p. Both of these have put me in the 67-68 mph range @6800-6900rpm. I do have to run the engine really high on the jack plate to get to the necessary rpm range. My question is if I wanted to try the max5 ST would you recommend the same pitch as a four blade? I did notice the stern would get a lot of lift on top end with the long tube prop.

    1. Michael,

      Which gear case are you running? We have been doing a lot of testing with captain Steve Lamp of Dream Catcher charters and his 24 Yellowfin carbon edition. The MAX5 was hands down the best performing prop on his 300R, 70+ mph. This was also with a Sport Master gear case, which helped elevate the MAX5 for optimal performance. I think our standard 15″ diameter MAX5, 22.3 pitch is your best bet for increasing top speed and overall handling. That is the lowest we go for pitch in the MAX5 line.

    1. Brad,

      Generally, about 1.5 inches of pitch. It all depends on how close to the limiter you are with the Bravo I FS, and how much room you have to play with engine height. Depending on the hull, you can raise the MAX5 higher than the Bravo I FS and get more RPM out of it while maintaining low slip (watch your water pressure).

  5. I have a Goldfish 36 P1 Supersport RIB, a 3 step hull with 2×380 hp diesels running IMCO SCX with driveshaft slightly above the v-hull bottom. Running Maximus Lab Finish 15 5/8 you end up trowing blades, so I run with 30′ std Maximus 15/5/8. At 4300 rpm it is running at 84 mph, which is perhaps 50 rpm high (-or very much spot on). I have two goals, to reduce the stress on the IMCO drives when running semi surface and to keep the speed and especially the cruising speed when running in the 48-60 mph.

    The new 15.5 diameter Max5 seems ideal for achieving that – what are your thought on behaviour and at what pitch would you suggest

    1. Bjorn,

      The MAX5 will not be more durable than our Maximus, they are both Lab Finished to the same specs. We also only go up to 15.25″ diameter on the MAX5. If the standard Maximus is holding up, I think that’s your best option.


  6. I thought the pointy profile of the Max5 would have less force on the edge of the blades versus the slightly more rounded and double rake of the Maximus. Also the smaller distance of the diameter would together with the diameter would make it easier on the drive when entering the water in a semi surface running height?
    -not that I am disappointed in the Maximus.

    1. Bjorn,

      I think you are benefitting from both the blade geometry and thickness of the standard Maximus. Having the bigger diameter and blade area is giving you more stern lift than the MAX5 would offer. That lift is helping to carry the weight of your engines. Those blades are also quite a bit thicker than the Lab Finish variants, which is why they are holding up to the torque.


  7. I have a 30′ Daytona, stock 525 engines, labbed 30p bravo ones, Imco-1 lowers, 1.25 gears, prop shafts are approx 2″ above bottom of boat. I have seen 98mph on the rev limiters. Would the max5 add top speed and bring the cruise slip down?

    Thank you for the help.


    1. Steve,

      Awesome setup, I think you are a great candidate for the MAX5. You will be in the neighborhood of a 29 pitch. Expect to gain at least 3 mph and greatly improve efficiency at cruise. I recommend calling Bob Teague at Teague Custom Marine- 661-295-7000. He has years of experience setting up Daytonas, and he has MAX5s in stock.


      1. My boat seemed to work the best with the drives up one inch above where they are now. Planing was tough with the B1’s so I dropped the drives down. Do you think a large diameter maximus and raise the drive back up 1 inch would work well?

        Thank you for your help.


        1. Steve,

          Bob Teague will be your best resource for engine height adjustment on your boat. Since you are currently running 17-18% slip, the MAX5 will be the propeller of choice to dramatically reduce your slip for better top end speed and cruising speed efficiency.


  8. i have a 34Z Seavee with triple 300R. Currently running Bravo FS 24″ on outsides and 25″center. I can see when running above 50 mph the center motor is slipping more or i should say loaded less than outsides. I was thinking changing center prop to MAX5 ST 25″….thoughts ?

        1. Michael,

          Thanks for the info, your slip seems to be pretty high. One cause for this could be high engine height. Are you able to measure engine height, going from the AV plate on your motor to the boat bottom? Measure from the boat bottom right in front of the engines. Take both measurements from the ground, on a leveled surface and subtract the difference. Whether it is a prop change or setup change, I think we can help you out.


  9. Nick I should be able to do that later but boat was setup at Lake X by Mercury. After all prop testing and engine height adjustments that was best they could do. Max 5s were not available at the time when boat was there .

    1. Michael,

      I like your original idea of running the MAX5 ST on the center engine, since we know the engine heights have to be close. Consider a 25 pitch MAX5 ST on the center, and if it works, I would think you could run 24 pitch MAX5 ST on the outer engines. Just for reference, you will want your engines to spin right at 6250 RPM wide open.


    1. Louis,

      Congrats on the new boat, the Bullet/300R package is pretty spectacular. The MAX5 ST is the propeller of choice for your setup. Pitch will depend on the load that you are running. We have guys running heavy loads with a 31 pitch around 97 mph, lighter loads run up to a 33 pitch, over 100 mph. The MAX5 ST has been a huge advancement, not only in top speed, but with mid range fuel economy as well. Both can be attributed to greatly reduced slip precentages. Prop shaft will be around 1.5″-1.75″ above the pad on top end. For planing, I believe guys are starting out with the prop shaft around an inch below the pad, and then they work their way up as speed increases.


  10. Hello,
    I have a 2006 Bullet 20XD with a 250XS and looking to replace the 250XS with the Racing 250R. What would be a good tournament load prop for this combination? I’ve be told most are running the Bravo and just wanted to exploring my options before decided on one prop. The best I was able to get out of the 250XS wtih tournament load was 88.7 and hoping to at least reach that or better with the 250R. Any advice is great appreciated.

    1. Ricky,

      For a tournament load, most guys will run the Bravo I FS. You would be looking at around a 31 pitch. We are currently testing a 29 pitch MAX5 ST on a 20XD with a 250R, I will give you an update when we know more. The MAX5 ST has vastly improved fuel economy and top end speed on the 21’10” Bullets with 250 and 300R setups.


      1. Thank you. Definitely would like to see the numbers on the MAX when you have them. Hoping to make it this week for the new 250R install. What would be the best height above the pad with 12″ rapid jack and 31 Bravo? Many Thanks for the info.

  11. I have a 2000 Stroker with the 250R , currently running a 30 Bravo1 FS to the limiter at 82-83 toury loaded. Looking at the Max 5 ST what pitch would you suggest?

    1. Mark,

      Sounds like a fun setup. Do you feel like you are getting to the limiter pretty quickly or are you having to use trim to get there? If you think you get to the limiter with ease, consider the 29 pitch MAX5 ST. Given your slip, it should be a great choice. It will be worth while to check your current fuel economy at cruise with the Bravo versus the MAX5 ST if you decide to go that route, guys are seeing huge gains in efficiency due to the reduced slip. For peak power, you will want to end up at 6100 RPM on top end. The MAX5 will also like to be elevated a bit more with your jack plate than the Bravo.


      1. A little trim but gets there pretty quick. I was thinking a 29 or 30 I will be running loaded most of the time. The cruising efficiency is what I’m really looking at. Most of the time be in the 4500-5500 range.

        1. Mark,

          The 29 should work well. Due to the MAX5 ST running lower in RPM compared to the Bravos and the reduced slip, it should still get you off of the rev limiter. Mid range efficiency will greatly improve. Some guys fishing tournaments with the 250 and 300R have been able to skip getting fuel on the way back in after switching to the MAX5 ST because the slip went from 20% (Bravo FS) to 10% (MAX5), at 5000 RPM.


  12. Hi Kind sir….Am I right in assuming that if the same tests were done with the bullet at an altitude of roughly 5000ft you would drop to a 29 pitch….?….you will obviously not have the same speed….but the 300r will be in its powerband??

    1. Jaco,

      Yes 29 pitch sounds correct if you are looking at running the exact same setup. There are many different Bullet models and they all vary in weight. We started with a 29.5 pitch MAX5 ST with the boat in the blog, then a 31, and he is now running a 31.5 pitch at 97 mph, full tournament load.


  13. I have a late model 300 OptiMax with a 1.62 sportmaster lower unit on a new, heavy Talon22 (tri hull) at 2200 ft above sea level…..so depending on which theories you like, I’m down 30-50hp. I can consistently see 81mph at 6000 rpm with a 26p ProMax…about 11% slip, right? Propshaft is maybe ½” above the bottom of the center hull. Boat needs bow lift since it’s not going fast enough to pack enough air under it. While the ProMax works well, might it be worthwhile to try a 27p Max5 ? tnx Jim

    1. Jim,

      You are spot on with 11% slip. The MAX5 will actually give you more stern lift, making your condition worse. Have you tried a lightning ET? Running a three blade and no barrel will help with bow lift.


  14. I have a 2019 cougar ftd basscat with the new 300r 4stroke with a 10” atlas jack plate . 1.74 sport master . Came with 28 bravo 1xs . Dealer lake test at 84.4 . But I’ve run it 77 at 5600 rpm . And it’s on the edge chine walking don’t se how he got 84.4 . Was wondering if the 5 would help with this and get more speed with out riding on the edge .

  15. Monterey is building me a M65 with a single 400r. Would the Max 5 be a decent prop for this boat or would I be better with a Bravo 1 FS or LT? I know they have built a few M65s with the 400r and used 3 blade props, but would imagine a 4 or 5 blade would perform better. Less concerned with top speed and more concerned with Hole Shot and Acceleration.

    Here are the M65 specs from Monterey:

    Dry Weight 5200LBS
    Deadrise 20°
    Beam 8′ 6″
    Fuel Capacity 80GAL
    LOA w/Engines 29’1″

    Thank you in advance.

    1. Mark,

      Sounds like an awesome setup. Do you know the style and pitch of the prop that comes standard? I would guess it’s an 18 pitch Enertia.

      The MAX5 and Bravo I’s will not go down low enough in pitch for your application. Consider the 17 pitch Rev 4 XP. With the long barrel and big blade area, it offers great hole shot and overall boat control. I roughly base that pitch recommendation on a 55 mph top speed.


  16. Hi Nick

    Just wanted to thank you for your help getting my boat set
    up right. Share with other Mercury owners. I have a 2007 Allison
    xb-21 2+2. I repowered with a 300R V8 HD Sportmaster with
    digital throttle & shift. Running 12 inches setback. Running 1 inch above pad. Me and my fishing partner weigh 500 lbs combined.
    Full load, full fuel. Ran 84 mph at 6100 rpm. 5.73 slip.
    Running a Max 5 ST 27P. Lake was choppy to really run it out.
    It was still climbing. I’ll update when bigger lake & smoother water.

    1. Ryan,

      He runs 16 inches of setback, and starts off with the motor low for hole shot, then ends up at 1.5-1.75 inches above using the hydraulic jack plate.


  17. I have a Bullet 21XRD with a 300R running 91 mph @ 6300RPM with a 32 pitch Bravo FS, 1″ above pad. Calculated prop slip 17%…much too high. What would you recommend? Max 5 ST at what pitch?

    1. Ron,

      That is perfectly normal slip for a Bravo I FS, and the reason why many guys are switching to the MAX5 ST. Your slip through the mid range is probably around 20%, reducing your fuel efficiency as well. With a 31 pitch MAX5 ST, you can expect 96-97 mph. If you run a light load and can turn a 32 pitch, you will be close to 100. With the MAX5, raise the engine up at least another half inch. The prop shaft being 1.5 to 1.75 inches above the pad is the key to top end speed, and why the big five blade prop is needed. Your slip should stay at 10% through the mid range and get down to 8% on top end.


  18. What’s the difference in WOT rpm’s between the 28X15.25 and the 29X15.25 Max5 ST giving that all other verifiable are the same?

  19. Nick, Thanks for your quick response on my question about the Bullet 21xrd running a 32 Bravo with lots of slip. Your suggestion of the Max 5 ST 31 pitch is very intriguing to me. The Bravo hole shot is not good at 1 inch above the pad. How will this Max 5 ST 31 be at these 1.5 to 1.75 heights?


    1. Ron,

      Most guys are running hydraulic jack plates and start with the prop shaft below the pad for planing and work their way up. They also run all five vent holes wide open. My guess is you would get some pretty serious cavitation running it fixed at 1.5 to 1.75 above. Switching to hydraulic might be worth the switch in my opinion, you will be able to run it low for great hole shot and jack it up for great top end speed.


  20. i just got a new 2019 nitro z21 with 250 pro xs wondering what prop would be the best 23 fury now have hydrolic jack plate can only turn about 5600 at any setting 68 mph any help thanks jim

    1. Jim,

      It will be hard to be the top end speed of the Fury. Running a 23 pitch Bravo I FS, you can expect 5900 RPM, but I am not sure you will gain any top end speed.


  21. I have a 34ft Sutphen with 700s and xrs running about 1.5″ below the bottom. With stock 32 bravo 1s I’m getting around 20+% slip or so at 5800-6000. I have been interested in running these max5 props. Would the standard 15 or 15.25″ be a better prop for my setup. Which pitch do you think would be best. Thanks

    1. Mike,

      I can’t endorse running MAX5s on 700’s because they are only rated to 600. However I know a lot of guys are running them on 750+ horsepower rigs. A great person to talk to about your setup is Bob Teague at Teague Custom Marine. Give them a call at 661-295-7000.


  22. Hi Nick,

    We have a Tuff21 and just repowered with the new 300R with Sportmaster 1.75:1. gears. We plan to run the propshaft at least 1.5″ above the pad.


    Looks like Max5 ST with 15-1/4″ and short barrel, could be a good option for us. We don’t need to hit max top speed of the hull/motor, would prefer good mid range and a decent top speed with 4-5 people on board.

    What kind of pitch would you recommend? On a 4 blade we were thinking 34p.


    1. Tim,

      Awesome boat. The MAX5 ST should work well for you. The 34 pitch is a tall prop for a loaded boat with 4-5 people. Light load you would be looking around 108 mph. The 32 pitch would offer better performance when you have multiple people on board, and still achieve 100-101 mph.


  23. I have a Yellowfin 24 Ce hardtop with a 400R. Been working with the Rev 4’s (22.5XP, 21) and Eco’s. Rev4 21 that i have needs edge work but produced 67. ECO 21 (NIB) is the best so far at 69. I know Steve Lamp has been testing this setup for years but i have a hard top w/ radar. Any ideas where to start for the best top end? 21 ECO XP is sounding good at the moment but figured a rev4 should do better than the ECO on the top end? Also, the 21 Rev 4 is very sluggish but pulls 6900 rpm before blowing out.

    1. Walker,

      The numbers with the ECO are impressive. There may be some speed gained by going with the Bravo I FS in a 23 pitch, perhaps 2 mph. It will stay hooked up for you on top end. Stay tuned for testing results on Steve Lamp’s new 24 CE with a 450R!


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