Advantages/disadvantages of a jet foot

Discussion in 'Vehicles, Boats, Campers, & ATVs' started by landem, Nov 28, 2012.

  1. landem

    landem Active Member

    I am looking at purchasing another boat to be primarily used on the river for duck hunting and on Lake Ouachita fo fishing. I am pretty well versed on outboards with conventinal props, but other than owning a Jet Ski 15 yrs ago I have no idea about a jet foot motor. I do know about the 15-20 hp difference and kinda how they work but that's about it. Any advice or help would be appreciated! A couple of specific questions I have are:

    1. Are parts hard to find for them and are they easy to work on?
    2. Are the impellers aluminum or stainless?
    3. Are rocks and mud hard on the impellers?
    4. Can the pitch be changed?

  2. SwampCat

    SwampCat Well-Known Member Lifetime Supporter

    Not sure about any of what you asked specifically - but keep them out of vegetation. That I do know.

  3. Jet foot:
    they don't turn as well as a prop drive
    use more fuel
    they do NOT like mud/leaves/dirt/sand/sticks!!
    they'll run in inches of water as long as the bottom is "hard" (rocky)

    Where they excel is on rocky bottom shallow rivers, say, Little Red or White rivers. Thats why you see them everywhere up there. They run in inches (or less...) of water but they will suck up everything thats smaller than a golf ball. Leaves will clog them completely, which then you'd have to tilt it up, clean it out, and start over. It's a pain in flooded timber areas-speaking from experience. Most of the smaller jets are aluminum impellers inside a stainless sleeve. Rocks will ding them up and occasionally a rock jams just right and will stop the motor. Keep a screwdriver in the boat to free the rocks and/or sticks. Pitch is going to be pretty well constant. When the impeller-to-sleeve clearance opens up due to wear, it'll lose speed, engine revs higher and it just feels odd. Then you just swap the shims to move the impeller up inside the sleeve further which tightens the clearance up again. The impeller and sleeve are both tapered. The pitch is set at the factory for YOUR particular motor, and they don't offer many (if any) different pitches. Hard parts are easily obtained-if you ever need any (not much to go wrong due to their simplicity...other than impeller and sleeve, and bearings which are all easily serviceable). Larger motors, like 100 HP+ are usually stainless. Most of the little ones are aluminum.

    Had one...for flooded timber, mud bottom lakes/rivers, stuff like that, they're worthless, IMO. They're for rock bottom lakes/rivers only.
  4. landem

    landem Active Member

    Thanks. I believe you guys have answered my question. Looks like I will just stick with what I know and go with a conventional prop.
  5. dbl bbl

    dbl bbl Member

    They are great on shallow rivers, terrible in the woods, and OK on lakes.
  6. BDW

    BDW Premium Member<br>Merganser Slayer<br>2011 Turkey

    I had one for a few years...It was a nightmare duck hunting in water with leaves and trash.
  7. Delbert

    Delbert Well-Known Member

    Loud noisy and dont do much better on White river than a prop with trim and tilt. I take my old 22 ft Ouachita with the 7.5hp anywhere those noisy slow jets can go, use 1/3 the gas too.

    I do know from time to time the jet impller needs to be sharpened its $200. plus shims and labor. I bought a new 20Hp Merc last year and bought a prop over a jet motor. I dont have good hearing now and would have needed ear muffs to run it.