1994 Larry and Allison Carlson were running the Sheppard's Yacht
Yard in Solomons, Maryland.
As with most Yacht Yards
Larry was offering a complete range of services to his
customers, these included painting, mechanical repairs,
propeller servicing and much more.
Sheppards Yacht Yard
- Solomons, Maryland.
When he had propellers
serviced, by the local propeller repair-place, he seemed to have
more trouble than with any of the other services provided.
Once the boat went back into
the water and it was tested he would find quite often that the
propeller was not performing. The performance problems ranged
from not reaching the correct rpm, or in a twin installation the
rpm’s were miles apart, vibration problems and noise problems.
These propeller problems
were very expensive and time consuming to resolve. Boats had to
be slipped, a propeller modification made, then the boat would
be launched again. This process was repeated until the boat
performed to an acceptable level. All this rectification work
was lost time and money
Larry remembered a
demonstration he had seen a few years earlier of a propeller
inspection system called Prop Scan, a system so accurate that
propellers only needed to be fixed once.
Larry contacted the American
representative of Prop Scan and to his surprise he learned that,
Terry Ryan, who had demonstrated the Prop Scan Inspection System
was in the area.
So they met once again and
talked deep into the night after which Larry decided to come to
Australia and attend the Propeller Dynamics Advanced Propeller
During his two weeks in
Australia, Larry learned about propellers, how they are
designed, how to read propeller drawings, how they work, how to
measure them, how to assess a damaged propeller and how to
repair and tune propellers.
Upon his return to Maryland
in January 1995 Larry ordered his first Prop Scan Propeller
Inspection System and hired Gene Thomas.
Gene Thomas deep in thought.
Gene was to become Larry’s
senior propeller technician. Larry taught Gene everything he was
taught by Terry.
Black Dog Props was created
and it grew from strength to strength. Twelve months later, due
to the rapid increase of business, a second Prop Scan was
purchased and Gene was sent to Australia to complete the
Propeller Dynamics Advanced Propeller Course.
Black Dog Props is now a
very well established business. In April 1997 Black Dog Props
moved to temporary facilities in Annapolis and started
construction of a purpose built propeller repair facility.
Before they moved in to this facility they took delivery of
their third Prop Scan Inspection System.
Tim Murray and Yaroslav
Ksenzhyk had in the mean time graduated to become Advanced
Propeller Repair Technicians. The Black Dog Props team now
consisted of five people.
Three years after
establishing Black Dog Props, Larry and his wife Allison decided
to sell the business. This allowed the Carlson's to pay off
their house, car and loans, and believe it or not, They still
had sufficient funds to start a new propeller repair business.
Wild Cat Propellers -
new business is called WildCat Propellers.
propellers is equipped to handle larger and more sophisticated
propellers. These propellers are commonly found on boats
operated by the
US Navy and US Coast Guard just to name a few.
joined WildCat propellers after being involved with Prop Scan
for many years, working for a leading propeller repair facility
Propellers has impressed people within the US Navy and US Coast
Guard. This is changing the approach to propeller repair, which
benefits all parties.
business ventures Larry had no propeller repair experience.
here to return