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Sterngear system

The stern gear is one of the most important systems in a boat and deserves sufficient design attention. A well calculated, manufactured and installed propeller shaft system not only increases comfort under way, but also greatly enhances reliability. VETUS can advise on and calculate: propeller dimensions, shaft diameter, bearing spacings, torque and thrust. With VETUS you can be sure that the entire system is perfectly tuned.
The selection of the correct propeller and shaft installation depends on a number of factors. The expected sailing range, installation and anticipated usage are all taken into account when giving advice.

For example, the diameter of a propeller is dependent on the rotational speed of the shaft as well as the available space under the boat. The gearbox reduction is therefore an important factor when calculating the speed, pitch, number of blades and blade area.

Why VETUS stern gear systems?

  • VETUS propellers are dynamically balanced, thus preventing vibration and resonance.
  • VETUS has large stocks of standard high quality propellers in various diameters, pitches and blade areas.
  • VETUS propellers are made from manganese bronze. This high-quality material is strong and if necessary, can be repaired.
  • VETUS can provide in house emergency repairs and modify the bore and taper of stock propellers.
  • VETUS offers free calculation of the correct propeller size, using a specially developed computer programme.

 Propeller Shafts

  • All VETUS propeller shafts are made of stainless steel, type Duplex 1.4462, which has excellent corrosion resistance, tensile strength and hardness.
  • All shafts are manufactured by VETUS themselves and supplied with a 1:10 taper, keyway with key, shaft nut with integrated zinc anode and a tab washer.
  • Vetus can supply shafts of 25, 30 and 35 mm diameter from stock in various lengths. Shafts of 40, 45 and 50 mm diameter are custom made with a short delivery time.

 Stern tubes

  • VETUS has various stern tube systems for shafts from 25 to 50 mm diameter. Depending on the type of vessel, material and main engine, tubes systems which can be clamped, bonded or welded in place can be chosen. VETUS uses only high quality brass, bronze, steel and thick walled GRP tube. 
  • VETUS designs and manufactures all stern tubes in house and offers free advice regarding shaft diameter and bearing spacing.
  • VETUS supplies a complete system, using both standard and custom made products.


  • VETUS offers various flexible couplings to make alignment of the shaft and engine easier. Furthermore, a flexible coupling increases sailing comfort as it significantly reduces vibrations.
  • In addition to flexible couplings, VETUS also supplies constant velocity joints in the programme. Due to the inclusion of an integral thrust bearing in these joints, the engine can be mounted on softer mounts which again greatly reduces vibration. The double-acting constant velocity joint makes it possible to transmit down angle between the propeller shaft and the engine.
  • All VETUS couplings are designed for long life.