Getting "the most" out of your hydro.

By: Chris Harris of Hammer Head Marine

THESE ARE SOME TECH TIPS ON HOW TO SQUEEZE THE MOST OUT OF YOUR HYDRO NO MATTER WHAT TYPE OF HULL OR HOW MANY CELLS THESE SUGGESTIONS CAN HELP MAXIMIZE THE PERFORMANCE ON YOUR BOAT.

"THE HULL"

The first rule for a high performance electric boat is it needs to be light, light, light.  Some people say I'm a little fanatical about this point.  However we are dealing with a relatively small amount of horsepower and reducing weight is one of the best ways to compensate for this.  Here are some weight guidelines for hydros. 

6 to 8 cell hulls need to weigh 5 to 8 .oz's.   For outriggers and 1/16 scale hydros  10 to 13 .oz's.  12 cell hydro hulls should weigh 12 to 14 .oz's for outriggers.

"HARDWARE"

Maximizing your hardware is another key to performance gains.  First of all there's that weight thing again.  Keeping you running gear as light as possible will help keep that overall weight of the boat down.   After all what good would an ultra light hull be with heave over built hardware??   I like using aluminum where ever possible but stainless steel with a little work can be made light.

Next is making sure everything that touches water is sharp and I don't mean kind of sharp I mean REALLY SHARP!  drag is another big enemy of low horsepower so the more drag you eliminate the faster your going to go.   The handling of you boat can also be greatly affected by this detail.  The turn fin on hydros should always be sharpened on the right side only.  This forces the water to the right side of the fin and helps counter the torque of the prop so the boat will track straight.  If  you have to give the boat a left rudder input to go straight this is a robbing a huge amount of speed.

"TUNING FOR MAX PERFORMANCE"

A hydro that is setup to run on an oval course would have the dame running attitude all the way around the course.  By this I mean if your boat is ballistic down the straightaway but bogs down in the turns the boat is doing something entirely different in the turns that it's doing in the straights.   The way to correct this problem is by angling the rudder back.  The rudder when turned will act as a ramp and keep the transom up.  This in turn will keep the RPM's of the motor up and it should be flying through the turns.  Some experimenting will be needed to achieve the proper angle.  Angle the rudder back a little at a time until your satisfied with the speed at which the boat is turning.

I also believe in polishing any hardware that touches the water including the prop.  This makes a smooth surface for the water to flow over which reduces drag.  I also polish my flex cable and stub shaft to help keep the friction in my drive train as low as possible.

Vibration is another rober of speed.   Props should be balanced very carefully so the entire drive operates smoothly.   Any noise you hear coming from the drive is the product of vibration which causes friction in turn robbing power.

I hope these tips help with your success in the hydro classes.  Stay tuned for my next article where I'll talk about setting up your fast electric for different water conditions.  And remember "Light, Sharp, & Shiny = Fast"

Chris Harris ( Hammer Head Marine)

This Article was written by Chris Harris Exclusively for Rum Runner Racing. Use of this article is prohibited without written permission from Rum Runner Racing.

 

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