Whether you realize it or not there is a hidden secret in the marine industry. That secret is no one sells a “Good, Used, Propeller”. What that means is a good propeller or a great propeller on a particular boat is like gold. It doesn’t mean you can’t take a used propeller and make it great it just probably needs a little prop magic. A great or even good propeller may be one of the most valuable assets to any great running boat. You can buy horsepower as there are a great number of engine builders as well as parts manufacturers selling it these days but the man and the company that harnesses the horsepower through the propeller is the most valuable. Because propellers work based on a means of slippage there are huge variations in performance from any given boat. Propellers aren’t like their automotive counterpart where a wheel on a hard surface moves one revolution for a measurable distance.
Today production propellers are just that “Production” meaning they come down a production line and merely have to fit into whats considered a wide range of accuracy. For many that’s close enough. But for the rest of us that want the very most out of our boat its not even close. So imagine you’ve just added all that horsepower to your boat and to achieve those few more MPH and possibly you could have got a similar result with lab finishing or your propeller by a pro? One thing is for sure the prop and engine combo need to work in unison.
Well That’s where the folks at BBlades come in. For all of the propellers in the world there are only a handful of professional propeller tuners that understand every angle, cup, or edge of a propeller. For a lot of us we know exactly the man, and for those of you that don’t he is Brett Anderson. Brett founded BBlades propellers after a short twenty plus year stint taking Mercury Racing’s propeller division to the next level. Brett realized his attention to detail and perfection was in huge demand not only by racers but poker runners, bass fisherman, ski racers, and the list goes on. Not to be limited to just OEM production propellers, BBlades was born and today they are one of the worlds leading propeller specialists.
Brett is extremely involved with the forums here and was a early Powerboat Nation supporter. His earliest requests were that he just wanted to educate consumers more about propellers and were so thankful to have him along. But enough about who what and where lets take five get the real facts from him:
PBN Asks: So Brett, it is of no secret to those of us in the business where you came from. But for those that don’t know gives us a quick synopsis in your eyes of what has shot BBlades to the top of the hill in regards to custom propellers? For those that don’t know this guys eats, breathes, and sleeps props.
Brett’s Response: First, Thank you for asking me to do this interview. It’s a pleasure to have this opportunity. To answer your question I believe I first must fall back on something my Father taught me years ago. That was, in order to succeed in business you need to accomplish two things. First you need to have a product that is good. A legitimate, better than most product and the knowledge to support that product from start to finish. A product that works and will stand the test of time. Second you need to have the best customer service in the industry. Taking care of his customers was something my Father was the best at. With that being said, My partner Bob Lucht and I had a wonderful rookie beginning and apprenticeship.
We both came from years of training at Mercury Marine and Mercury Racing. We were fortunate to have learned from the best in marine production, service, sales and marketing in the industry. The mentors we had are the founding fathers or the propeller art form we work with daily. Since those beginnings, we have taken performance propeller knowledge to the next level. We are kind of your propeller blacksmiths on steroids. Also, we work with great vendors and propeller companies that support our efforts as well.
PBN Asks: How long have you been doing this ? I mean you’re no spring chicken (haha) , so all of your guys combined means you have 80 years of combined experience in the propeller world. That’s Impressive!
Brett’s Response: A long time. Actually I have been in and around boats my entire life. We were a boating family. I definitely had a love for propellers even as a youngster. I remember asking my Dad questions about a heavy black 3 blade propeller off a Evinrude 70 hp engine when I was around 12 or so. Something didn’t seem right. All the other black propellers were so light in weight. What I learned was it was a SST propeller. A OMC stainless propeller with a Teflon coating. It was a marketing ploy to suggest it would make the prop faster. Ok, the writing was on the wall, I had propeller issues already! Anyway, professionally I have been in the industry almost 21 years. There are 3 of us with Mercury Marine backgrounds and BBLADES experience totaling 65 years. With the other folks we have an board, the total number years of experience is 80 years! That doesn’t include our metal fabricator who has 40 of experience alone.
We’ll being having more from Brett and the BBlades Operation here soon! So Stay tuned to PBN to hear more as we go in-depth with BBlades…