A propulsion transmission for a ship having a reversibly driven propeller shaft with a fixed pitch propeller and a torque converter of the single stage and fixed housing type for driving the propeller in the reverse direction. A planetary gear system is provided for driving the ship in a forward direction and a disengageable friction plate type brake is connected between the transmission housing and the planetary gear system and for forward drive. The brake is engaged to anchor a portion of the planetary gear system to drive said propeller shaft in a forward direction. The brake is disengaged when the torque converter is driving the propeller shaft in the reverse direction.
One embodiment of the invention also includes a friction plate type clutch connected between the planetary gear system and the propeller shaft for transmitting power to the propeller shaft in a forward direction when the brake is disengaged. The clutch and brake are concentrically located with respect to one another in an axially compact arrangement.