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Best I-Pilot Trolling Motors

Best Inflatable Sports Trolling Motor

Best I-Pilot Trolling Motors: When you go out with your boat, anywhere and at any point in time, you want to do it easily, quickly and comfortably. Aside from the fishing, for example, you want to enjoy using your boat. Ever heard people speak of their boats as if they were beings. “I took her out today and she was marvelous.”  This is where a trolling motor comes in and becomes extremely important. Further than that, you will need to get a trolling motor that is compatible with the features on your boat. It is important for one to have all the aspects of their boat in mind before purchasing a trolling motor. Once that is achieved, then you get down to the business of choosing a trolling motor that will serve your specific needs when you are on the lake fishing, for example. This is a review of an array of I Pilot trolling motors from Minn Kota that would possibly serve an array of needs. Read on, you just might find one that will be the perfect fit for what you are looking for.

 

Motor brand Voltage option Thrust power Shaft length Best for Editor rating
Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 80 with I-Pilot and Bluetooth

 

24V 80 lbs 60 inches Saltwater conditions 4.6
Minn Kota Ultrex 80 with I-Pilot and Bluetooth 24V 80 lbs 52 inches Easy to steer 4.7
Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112 with I-Pilot and Bluetooth 36V 112 lbs 60 inches Saltwater conditions 5.0
Minn Kota Ultrex 112 US2 with I-Pilot link and Bluetooth 36V 112 lbs 60 inches Easy to use 4.9
Minn Kota Ultrex 80lbs with I-Pilot link and Bluetooth 24V 80 lbs 60 inches Ease to control due to steer steering 4.6

Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 80 with I-Pilot and Bluetooth

Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 80

The Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 80 is especially designed for saltwater conditions. The motor makes it very easy to control your boat. It does not compromise on giving you the best boating experience.

This motor uses a 24 volt system giving your boat 80lbs of thrust at the end of a 60 inch shaft. The motor’s voltage capacity of 24V is on the average level of voltage capacity. It enables the motor have a longer running time since it provides the same thrust while drawing less amperage. You can actually fish for a longer period of time. Its 60 inch shaft length is a bit longer than the standard 42 inches. It will, however, be extremely suitable for the big water specialist that have a longer bow or stern.

The motor has a saltwater advantage. Saltwater is known to have different species, boat types and challenges. The Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra was built just for that. Its riptide’s premium grade alloys, designed for saltwater, are fortified by a multi step cleaning process. The motor stops corrosion before it even starts while packing a lot of performance and power at the same time. The motor’s power trim allows you to adjust its depth quite easily in these waters depending on the changing conditions. This is a pretty good package deal for a saltwater trolling motor.

Its’ motor can operate on the I-Pilot wireless system accessory. This GPS-powered navigation system is another great aspect about this motor that promotes easier boat control. It ensures that your boat remains on its path and sometimes anchor it. The Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 80 also has the auto stow and deploy feature which greatly eases your burden. You can automatically get your motor in and out of the water with the I-Pilot remote. It gives you the freedom to concentrate on your fishing rather than maneuvering to set up your boat in a certain position or anchoring it for that matter.

The digital maximizer on the motor provides up to five times longer running time on a single charge. This simply means your trolling motor is engineered to run for longer on one single charge. So even if you operate your boat at lower speeds, you still get full torque to lag the 80 lbs. Doing this will also extend your motor’s  battery life.

Pros

  • Suitable for saltwater.
  • I-Pilot system fastens navigation.
  • Motor runs longer cause of digital maximizer.
  • Durable battery life.

Cons

  • Sets off bow of boat a bit further than needed.

Minn Kota Ultrex 80 US 52inches i-Pilot and Bluetooth

Minn Kota Ultrex 80

This is another trolling motor version available amongst the Minn Kota series weighing 84 pounds. This motor is designed to reduce all the work for you and allow you enjoy taking your boat out and going fishing.

The Minn Kota Ultrex US 52 inches I-Pilot has a 24V voltage capacity which is average amperage. It is just about enough for the 80lbs thrust power. The 24V voltage capacity enables the motor run for longer periods of time. Its 52 inch shaft length is a bit longer than the standard 42 inches. It is quite suitable for individuals with big bows or sterns.

This motor is user friendly because of the electronic assist steering. With the power steering feature made available, you can forget about foot fatigue. It is the same heel/ toe pedal steering that anglers prefer about traditional cable steer motors. It has been made easier by power steering. Power steering makes it easier to make steering adjustments. This reduces the frequent foot fatigue and steering effort making Ultrex the most responsive motor. The power steering feature ensures that you have a very smooth ride on that fishing trip. The steering lock feature available with this motor, maintains the motor head in the direction it was last left in. No more worry about your motor swaying with the tide and currents of the water.

The Minn Kota Ultrex 80 US 52 inches also offers all the benefits of the I-Pilot GPS based navigation system. This feature will come in handy especially for individuals with hummingbird fish finders. It allows automatic control and steering of your boat. A touch screen remote is available to help in steering the boat while on autopilot. You can check out your battery level on the remote as it has a battery meter display.

Pros

  • Very easy to use and steer
  • Smooth running mechanism.
  • The I-Pilot allows for great control and smoother rides.
  • Steering lock maintains the motor head in
  • Works well for its price range.

Cons

  • The touch screen remote is an optional purchase. You will have to pay extra to get the touch screen remote.

Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112

Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112

The Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112 is the greatest option for big water enthusiasts with frequent and long boat expeditions. All its features combined are designed to give you an ultimate boating experience.

The motor uses a 36V option. This is the highest voltage capacity available. It enables you fish for a longer period of time and they give out more thrust power allowing for smoother rides while on the water. This voltage option is better suited for boats that are more than 16 feet long. It ensures they run efficiently and smoothly. Another feature found on the Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112 is the digital maximizer. It provides up to five times longer run time on one single charge.

The Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112 has a shaft that measures up to 60 inches which is quite suitable for big boats likely to have this motor. It ensures the angler’s electric motor does not cavitate and spook all the fish away.

This particular trolling motor has the auto stow and deploy that makes your fishing experience much better.  Auto stow and deploy allows you get your motor in and out of the water using the included I-Pilot remote. In addition, this motor has a power trim, which allows you easily raise and lower the depth of the motor with the push of a button on your remote. This is suitable especially in changing conditions.

This motor can be steered via the automatic I-pilot remote that works via Bluetooth. It allows automatic control and steering of your boat. A touch screen remote is available to help in steering the boat while on autopilot. You can check out your battery level on the remote as it has a battery meter display.

Saltwater has different species and challenges. The Minn Kota Riptide Ulterra 112 has a saltwater advantage. It’s riptide’s premium grade alloys are fortified by a multi step cleaning process. This ensures that your motor’s material remains durable.

Pros

  • Runs for longer time.
  • Smoother mechanism.
  • Longer lasting battery so longer fishing trips.

Cons

  • Sets off bow of boat a bit further than needed.

Minn Kota Ultrex 112 US2

Minn Kota Ultrex 112

This is the hallmark trolling motor of all the Minn Kota versions. The improvement of its’ previous features coupled with the addition of new ones, will make the ultrex the smoothest, most responsive motor you will ever drive.

It retains the same heel/ toe steering you are used to but it has been made easier with power steering. The power steering prevents the occurrence of foot fatigue by reducing the effort applied. It ends up making your boat driving a comfortable experience. The motor also has a steering lock that will ensure the motor head is pointed in the direction it was originally left in. There will be no wobbling or swaying of your motor with the water’s currents.

The Minn Kota Ultrex 112 US2 weighing twenty pounds, continues to reduce your work and ensure you have an easy time. It does this courtesy of the lift assist design that raise the motor by itself. You barely lift a finger to start raising your motor manually. Ease and comfort all in one.

The I-Pilot link integrates the GPS system enabling you to navigate in any direction you please in your boat. Its trolling motor communicates and delivers automatic boat control. You relax and let your boat move on autopilot.

Pros

  • User friendly
  • Smooth mechanism so a smooth ride.

Minn Kota Ultrex 80lbs

Minn Kota Ultrex 80 US 60" Shaft Link 80 lbs Thrust 24V Trolling Motor with i-Pilot Link & Bluetooth

The Minn Kota Ultrex 80lbs trolling motor is the average boats hallmark of trolling motors. With all its previous models features improved, it has been designed to make your boat expeditions as easy and comfortable as possible.

With a voltage capacity of 24V allows the Minn Kota Ultrex motor a thrust level of 80. This coupled with the 60 inches shaft is a great combination for big water enthusiasts.

The motor has an I-pilot link and Bluetooth function. This delivers automatic bat control directly from the I-pilot remote via a fast and secure Bluetooth connection. You can use the ever familiar and popular technology of either your phone or tab to steer your boat. How cool. This makes it so easy for you to control your boat automatically. The I-pilot delivers comfortable precise speed steering. The motor has a battery meter as well that is displayed on the I-pilot link remote control LCD screen. You are able to keep an eye on how much battery life is remaining.

This trolling motor has the power steering feature: the same heel/toe steering you used before but made easier. The power steering reduces your steering effort as well as foot fatigue as you try controlling the boat. This makes the ride the smoothest because of how responsive the motor is. The motor has a steering lock which keeps the motor head pointed in the direction it was last left in. So no wobbling or swaying of your boat courtesy of an unstable steering.

You do not have to struggle with lifting the motor. This comes with a lift assist design so you can raise your motor without so much as raising a finger.

Pros

  • User-friendly and easy to use.
  • Suitable for rough weather conditions.

What is an I pilot/Bluetooth/trolling motor?

Trolling Motors

This is a self-contained unit affixed to an angler’s boat at either the bow or astern. It includes an electric motor, propeller and controls. Trolling motors that are not electric, use gasoline. A gasoline-powered outboard on a boat, if not the vessel’s primary source of propulsion, can be referred to as a trolling motor. They aid with precision maneuvering of the boat to enable the angler cast his bait to where the fish are located. Trolling motors have advanced in their design and sophistication over the years. They have grown to require less of manual effort in order to operate them. Some of the trolling motors will list standard I-pilot as a feature while others will list the I-pilot link.

The standard I-Pilot is a GPS-based trolling system. While in the water, anglers can use the I-Pilot or the I-Pilot Link systems for easier boat control and positioning. It allows you the freedom to focus your attention on presenting bait and catching loads of fish. The standard I-Pilot features, especially those of Minn Kota motors, include:

  • ITrack Record/Playback.
  • Advanced Autopilot.
  • Cruise Control.
  • Co-Pilot.
  • Remote: The newer version comes with a larger LCD screen and more intuitive controls.
  • Reinvented Spot Lock: Newer versions will have newer hardware and software algorithms combining to create the most accurate electronic GPS anchor ever.
  • Jog: This enables you to move your current spot lock position to the left or right, forward or backward, with the simple push of a button.

The new I-Pilot remote also includes:

  • Rugged, soft grip design on the remote. There is no dropping of this remote anytime soon.
  • 33% larger, full sunlight-viewable LCD screen. In some motors, it might be an additional purchase.
  • New soft keys for easier and expanded menu navigation.
  • Power supplied by 3 AAA batteries, with an anticipated battery lifetime of approximately longer fishing season.

What is The I-Pilot Link in a Trolling Motor

The i-pilot link integrates the GPS enabling you to navigate in any direction you please in your boat. Its trolling motor to communicate and deliver automatic boat control. In addition to that, the i-pilot link, with the help of a Lake master app, will allow you follow any depth contour you chose automatically .An i-pilot link installs quickly and easily. All you have to do afterward, is to replace the top of your i-pilot link compatible trolling motor head, activate your remote. And you are set to start fishing. The i-pilot link can facilitate quite a number of things. These include locking onto spots, learning and retracing paths and depth contours. This enables you to create a custom route. The i-pilot link will mark your current spot, use its records of your movement, retrace your steps and form a route of that. That is quite convenient. It would do you great service if you get a trolling motor with this GPS fishing system. You get to enjoy the one activity you came out for without hustling yourself for direction and fishing spots, for example. You sit back and let the i-pilot link take automatic control of steering your boat. The difference basically comes down to the fact that the I-Pilot Link has an extra number of features than the I-Pilot. All new I-Pilot Link systems will include:

  • Remote: Compact design with larger full-color touchscreen LCD.
  • Reinvented Spot Lock: New hardware and software algorithms combine to create the most accurate GPS anchor ever.
  • Jog: Move your current Spot Lock position 5 feet to the left or right, forward or backward, by simply pushing a button.
  • Phone App : Trolling motor controls and software updates (iOS and Android)
  • Circle: Select a position, set in an offset distance and travel around the selected location in a circular direction at the speed of your choice. How amazing and pretty easy can fishing get?
  • Virtual Remote: Control speed, steering, Spot Lock and Advanced Autopilot directly from your boat.

Its’ older features include:

  • Copilot
  • Cruise control
  • Advanced Autopilot
  • iTrack record and playback
  • Backtrack
  • Follow the contour and contour offset

The new I-Pilot Link remote features include:

  • Compact soft grip design that fits better in the user’s hand.
  • Large, full color, sunlight-viewable LCD screen.
  • Dual Interface Control.
  • Touch screen user interface with intuitive, customizable menu.
  • Full function keypad control.
  • Integrated, rechargeable battery, with an anticipated battery charge of approximately one fishing day.

There are no major systematic differences between the standard i-pilot and the i-pilot link. They vary in small capacities. I-pilot link, for example, has extra features that include the Spot Lock, which can store up t 2500 different spot lock positions. In terms of iTracks, the i-Pilot link can store up to 66 different tracks. The i-Pilot link also has a depth contour feature and cruise control. The choice is yours to make, on which would be most suitable. Most individuals have preferred the standard i-Pilot for a long time citing there is nothing special about the i-Pilot link that would cost a decent amount more. However, those who have used the link say there is so much to do with the kit, it changes the way you fish. It is only a matter of discovery, learning and attempting to use.

Bluetooth Perks in a Trolling Motor

The Bluetooth wireless communication between a remote and the trolling motor controller is the determining force of all I-Pilot and I-Pilot Link system. Newer versions of the I-Pilot and I-Pilot Link system extend the controls to a phone. Technology is surely taking over and making it easier for all of us. These newer features include:

  • Most used motor controls: Prop on/ off, Prop speed, High-speed bypass, Spot-Lock, and Autopilot.
  • Compatible with Android and iOS devices.
  • Software updates
  • Wireless product registration.
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Beginners Guide to Trolling Motors

Beginners Guide to Trolling Motors

Beginners Guide to Trolling Motors: If you are interested in fishing activities, a trolling motor is one of the most vital items you will require. But you may not know what they are, what they do, or how to look for one. Consider this article to be your guide on them. After reading this guide, I recommend checking out my top trolling motor picks to see if one fits your needs.

Their world can confuse you, particularly when you go online and purchase one without any prior information. However, purchasing the correct motor means that your fishing experience will be comfortable.

What is a Trolling Motor?

Simply put, this is a self-contained unit, which contains components such as electric motor, controls and the propeller. It is usually fixed on to your boat, either at the stern (back area) or the bow (front area). You often lift them from the water to reduce drag when the primary motor of the boat is operating.

What are the uses of trolling motors?

They are used as secondary power sources when you want to move or steer the boat in a precise manner, and this helps you to locate fish more accurately. The trolling motors that are best for this purpose are bow motors. Also, trolling motors are fantastic options for a main power source on an inflatable boat.

They are also used for game fishing – they are a secondary propelling source aside from the primary motor. The best motors for this are transom motors, and you mount them along the primary motor or on areas of the boat called brackets. These I pilot trolling motors will take your fishing game to the next level.

What to Look for in a Trolling Motor

There are three types of trolling motors – engine, bow and transom motors. What you choose depends on where you usually like to out and where you like to fish. Like anything in life, they have their own benefits as well as drawbacks.

Here is a rough guide on each of the motors.

Bow motors

These are the most popular type of trolling motor, because they are very easy use by serious fishermen who have either large or medium sized boats.

These motors are more convenient for you if you fish on the fore-deck of a bass boat or an open bow-rider. In the case you want to prevent damage as a result of grounding, it is best to go for a spring-loaded mount. These will enable the motor to swing away on impact from water.

On very small or light sailboats, trolling motors usually act as extra engines and they are mounted on the back area where tillers operate them.

One of the benefits in their operation is that it is very easy to control them, compared to transom motors. This is due to them pulling the boat through the water, so the steering becomes more precise. Therefore, if you want easy maneuvering of your boat as well as accurate steering, then bow motors are the best option. They also have added ranges of control options, such as foot controls, hand controls and wireless remotes, and they come with larger feature sets compared to transom ones.

The drawbacks to them are that they are more challenging to install on your boat because they occupy a lot of space, and they tend to be more costly (due to the features, for the most part).

If you want to install them, just keep two things in mind – you need to install them at the front of the boat, and you also need a flat deck.

Transom motors

Transom motors are very popular with smaller boats because of their ease of installation, and they are more affordable. Bow motors normally require drilled plating on the bow of your boat, but the difference with transom motors is that it is easy to attach them to the stern of your boat using a simple clamp.

It is also very easy to operate them from the back of the boat, and they tend not to clutter the deck because of cords or foot pedals, unlike bow mounts.

These have areas called brackets, which adjust quickly to changing heights and angles. This enables the shaft of the motor to be immersed at correct depths. The only drawback is that they do not have many control options due to their simpler build. Also, they do not offer you the accurate control that a bow motor does. But for their ease of use, they are good if you are just starting out with motors or you have a smaller boat.

Engine motors

These are mounted on the cavitation plate of outboard motors. They serve only when you want to add thrust and the steering to the boat. This happens through the outboard motor because the trolling motor is directly connected to it. As for the motor direction and the thrust settings, these are controlled through a wired remote.

These are a very good option for you if you have a multi-purpose boat. They are especially helpful when the vessel does not have adequate space for traditional trolling motors. When the engine is off, the motor is submerged, and when the engine is on, the motor comes out of the water with the outboard. The benefit of using them is that they save space on your boat, and they are also easy to install.

The drawback to them is that they tend to be more challenging to control, compared to transom or bow motors. They also lack many features that bow mounts come with, and the fact that they utilize electric power to create thrust makes them more costly than the other motor varieties.

Considering all these motors, what do you therefore need to know when buying one?

Know if the Trolling Motor is for Salt Water or Fresh Water

This is the most important aspect to look out for, because you can run the risk of ruining your motor if you use it in the wrong conditions. When looking at trolling motors, there are indicators that show that the boat is for fresh or salt water. The reason for this is because of their build. Freshwater motors cannot handle the harsh conditions of salt water. Saltwater motors have added protection that keeps them from saltwater damage. Here is a more in depth article about using a freshwater trolling motor in saltwater.

Because of this, saltwater motors are more costly compared to freshwater motors, so it is better to spend some extra money to purchase a salt water motor that is of good quality, if your fishing ground is in that environment. This salt/freshwater trolling motor from Amazon is my personal favorite.

Thrusting power

The most vital part of a trolling motor is the thrust. Without it, the boat cannot be propelled forward or backwards. It is mostly measured in pounds.

The thrust power that your boat needs will depend on your boat size; so when looking at thrusting abilities, make sure to know your boat weight – do not just limit it to the actual boat, use the total weight. This will include weight of the people as well as equipment that your boat can carry.

To calculate the weight, use the total boat weight and divide it by 200 pounds – this is because for every 200 pounds of boat weight, you will need 5 pounds of thrust power to be comfortable. After getting the result, take it and multiply by 5. An example for a 2000 pounds boat, you need:

2000/200*5=50 pounds. This means that for your boat that weighs 2000 pounds, you will need a motor that gives a thrust power of at least 50 pounds. You can however go by other calculations of using 2 lbs of thrusting power for every 100 lbs of boat. Although, I would highly recommend taking the extra power.

Battery size of the Trolling motor

Before you spend your money on a trolling motor, keep the size of the trolling motor battery as well as its voltage in mind.

Batteries here do not mean car or truck batteries – these are too weak to sustain the needs of the trolling motor over long periods. Trolling motor batteries come in three voltage sizes, which is 12 volts, 24 volts and 36 volts.

You cannot use a 12 volt battery for a trolling motor that requires 36 volts power. However, you can combine three 12 volt batteries to create a 36 volt one. If you want to replace your trolling motor, examine the battery power and purchase according to what you need. I personally use a 12 volt battery and it works fantastic for my needs, It can be found here on Amazon.

The length of the shaft

This will ultimately depend on the size of your boat. For longer boats, they will require longer shafts, but if you have a shorter boat, then you can get a short shaft.

One thing to note – if you are using an engine mount trolling motor, you do not need to consider shaft lengths. For transom and bow mounts, you need to lower the shaft under water to between 15 and 19 inches, or else the boat will not move smoothly over the water and there will be a lot of propeller noise. This will not be advantageous for you especially if you are fishing. Nobody likes scared fish!

How to Measure a Trolling Motor Shaft

Finding the right shaft length is very important because it will end up determining your fishing experience. It gets even more vital if you own a bow motor. You want the shaft to be long enough so that it keeps the propeller submerged (which means less noise, and a good fishing experience), but you do not want it so long that it drags on the bottom or becomes difficult to stow.

Shaft length: how to select it

For bow motors, it is vital to get the correct length. This is because bow-to-water distances will always vary in different bots, and bows move more on water, compared to transom.

If you are not sure on what to look for, begin by measuring the length from the horizontal mounting point up to the waterline, and then add 20” to this figure.

As a general rule, you want either equal or longer shaft lengths than this figure, but you do not want less. For extra consideration:

If you steer the hand controlled motor when standing up – add 12” to the recommended lengths (we have compiled a guide). This adds comfort and ease of steering through raising the motor tiller.

The bow to waterline distance The shaft length to get
0 inches-10 inches 36 inches
16 inches-22 inches 42 inches
22 inches-28 inches 48 inches-52 inches
28 inches-34 inches 54 inches-62 inches

If you frequently fish in harsh waters – you should add 5 inches to the recommended lengths in the table above. This is because the propeller needs to stay submerged in spite of additional rough water conditions.

Shaft lengths for transom mounts

This is not as important as for bow motors, though it is good to double check. Check the table below for a general guide.

Waterline distance Length of shaft
0 inches-10 inches 30 inches
10 inches-16 inches 36 inches
16 inches-20 inches 42 inches
Above 22 inches Consult the manufacturer

General rules to remember

The rule of submergence

It is important to submerge the top of the motor at least 12 inches. This will give the boat adequate propulsion, and it also ensures that the motor is not noisy, so this does not scare the target fish away.

Pick longer lengths, always.

When you have a choice between two lengths, always go for the longer one. The reason for this is because it is easy to adjust longer lengths through the depth collar adjustment that comes on all trolling motors. However, short shaft lengths are impossible to adjust downwards.

How you measure the shaft

When you are trying to know the length of your existing shaft, or you are trying to make measurements on your vessel, it is good to know the exact measurements of the shaft.

To do this, take the measurements from the base of the motor head up to the top point of the propeller housing. Place the trolling motor on the ground, making sure the shaft faces upward. The ground should be a dry, hard surface.

Record this distance, keeping in mind that the length of trolling motor is in increments of one foot or sometimes halves – translates to 36 inches, 48 inches and 60 inches.

Pro tip: when you want to determine the length that the trolling motor requires for fitting various boats. It is best to measure the distance from the water surface up to where the trolling motor is mounted. After getting the figure, add 18 to 24 inches to get the required shaft lengths.

What Kind of Mount do you Need for a Trolling Motor?

Selecting a trolling motor and installation

The advantage of engine trolling motors is that they offer you large amounts of space. However, you still need to know the right-sized motor for the boat, as well as making sure it is compatible and installing it on the outboard motor.

Selecting the motor

Some engine motors are only different due to their thrust power, so you do not need to worry about choosing from different feature series. You only need to choose on how strong you need or want your motor to be.

As the same with all trolling motors, the weight of the boat should be the primary consideration when selecting the motor thrust. When calculating the boat weight, ensure that you include the weight of additional gear as well as passengers and fuel.

Make sure it is compatible with the outboard

Engine mount motors are installed to the cavitation plates of the outboard motor. This is unlike bow mount motors that are installed directly to the deck. This is the mount I use from Amazon for the trolling motor on my inflatable boat.

Because there are a wide variety of outboard motors in addition to their mounting methods, it is good for you to make sure that the engine mount model that you choose is accommodated fully by your outboard.

If you are not sure on how you can determine compatibility, you can follow these rules as a guide:

The 13 inch immersion

This relates to the cavitation plate of the outboard. This plate must be at least 13 inches beneath the waterline. This makes the motor to be fully submerged deep enough so that trolling motor cavitation is prevented – cavitation leads to the boat having reduced power and increased noise that scares your fish away. This is my favorite trolling plate from Amazon.

As you measure the motor shaft, make sure to note the following aspects:

The minimal distance is 13 inches

This is the distance that the motor requires so that it functions well. If the distance is less than 13 inches (even at 12 or 11 inches), you will likely get problems with the performance.

Do not measure tabbed distances

When you measure the distance, ensure your outboard is not tabbed. That is, it is sitting straight down in the water. This is because you will likely use the trolling motor when the outboard is in the untrimmed position, so this is where you should start to measure from.

Make sure you have plenty of mount footprint

When you have confirmed the ample cavitation submersion, you want the citation plate is long enough to mount the motor. After all you do not want constraints as you install it.

All good cavitation plates always have adequate length for providing enough support to the motor, though it is good to check. Ensure that the cavitation plate has a 3 inch or 3.75 inch ribbon on either side of the outboard where you will mount the motor.

Examine the outboard spine clearance

This is a very important step, and you should not fail to check it. Make sure that the motor spine – this is the part that sticks up in the middle of your cavitation plate – will not interfere when you mount the trolling motor.

Engine mount motors usually have a gap in their middle area that takes care of this spine. However, you want to make sure that you have plenty of clearance.

Doing this is very easy – you just need to get the rear mounting locale by measuring 3 inches or 3.75 inches backwards from the cavitation plate front, depending on the motor. You then measure up 7.25 inches. As long as the 7.25 inch measurement clears the motor spine, there should not run into any problems.

How to Install a Trolling Motor

Installing trolling motors is really straightforward, but you require the right tools for the job. Here are some general items that you will need to install them, as well as other parts.

The items that come with the trolling motor:

Power leads with their terminal battery ring connectors

Trolling motor and its control – this can be the foot pedal, hand tiller or remote control.

Additional equipment can include:

Batteries – these can include from one to three 12 volt batteries, and this really depends on the trolling motor.

Always go for deep cycle batteries. Avoid starting batteries for your motor because full discharging and recharging them will ruin them within a short time. I use this trolling motor battery from Amazon.

Battery changer – this will recharge your trolling motor batteries after use. I like this charger from Amazon, although it is a little more pricey, you get what you pay for.

Terminal ends – these are very important to connect the terminal ends on the motor power leads. If you do not have them, you can use some other type of battery connectors.

Jumper wire – this mostly applies to when you have a 24 volt or 36 volt motor. They are short wires that you use to connect your trolling motor batteries in series. For added safety, purchase the same wire gauge as the rest of your trolling motor system.

Some recommended equipment:

Trolling motor receptacle and plug – these enable you to quickly disconnect the wiring of the trolling motor, and this is recommended during charging. This receptacle is on Amazon for a great price.

Circuit breakers – these will enhance the safety levels of your trolling motor in case the prop is caught on water obstacles such as rocks. This circuit breaker from Amazon will work great for all 12, 24 and 36 volt systems.

Quick releases – these allow for easy removal of the bow-mount trolling motor, regardless of the occasion – storage, service, boat cover, or family days. I like this one from Amazon. However, make sure the one you purchase will fit your motor.

Extensions – because power leads on trolling motors are usually three to five feet, additional wire lengths for batteries will be required for installation. To know the length of wire that you need, measure the distance from the trolling motor location to the batteries. Once you know this length, there are certain guidelines for the wire gauge to use.

Lastly, getting a battery case will solve many of these safety concerns all in one – rather than buying everything individually. This is a great battery case from Amazon that I wish I knew about beforehand.

Bow and transom mounts

Tools needed – wrench kit, drill, screwdriver

Steps

  1. Bow mounts have two parts – the starboard and the port. Decide which side you want to mount the motor on. Both of them can be used as mounting bases, so this really depends on your preference and your fishing method.

When you mostly steer the boat from the port side, it is better to mount the motor on the starboard side and vice versa, and this will enhance visibility. You should also consider when and how you fish when you decide where to mount the motor.

  1. You can remove the plate panels by removing the screws that are keeping them in place. This will reveal the mount holes in most motors.
  2. Assemble the motor before mounting the locations of the holes. Do this by attaching the motor shaft and the head assembly to the mount. Once you do this, you can set the motor in the stowed pose along the bow of the vessel, parallel to its side.
  3. Once this is done, place the shaft very close to the centre line of the boat. This is because, when the propeller and shaft are off centre, it becomes very hard to steer the boat, and you can also encounter drifting problems more often.
  4. Place the front of the mount in such a way that permits the motor to deploy and clear the bow tip. This of course, is different for different motors, though it usually needs either a slight overhang, which is less than one inch, or a flush pose with the side of the vessel.
  5. When the motor is in the stowed pose, examine the motor head location. You need to ensure that it does not happen to overhang on the boat side. This is because you do not want to run the risk of breaking your motor head in case it bumps into vertical surfaces such as docks. You can do this through a straight-edge by positioning the mount so that the motor head stays in the boat boundaries.
  6. When you have double-checked the position of the mount, proceed to drill two holes on the bow from the hole pattern in your mount. It is even easier if you have someone to hold the mount for you so that it does not shift during fixing. When you have finished drilling, secure the motor through the two holes, and you can then drill the remaining holes without worrying about shifting mount positions. Pro tip: you can even remove the motor head and shaft to make your drilling process easier.
  7. You will mostly have access to the bow or the boat’s underside so that you fasten the nuts and bolts to keep the motor in place. However, in some cases, this is not possible. In the event you cannot access the underside of the mount platform, there are some no-access bolting nuts that will keep the motor in place without underside access.
  8. Once you have finished securing everything, you can re-attach the side plates.

I like this mount from Amazon for my inflatable boat. You will pretty much follow the same set of directions except you are attaching the motor to this mount. However, make sure you buy the right one to suit your needs, this one only works with Intex boats. Here is a very long guide I have written about inflatable boats that might be able to help you out.

Engine mount motors

The process is fairly easy, and has the following steps:

  1. Keep the engine motor on the outboard cavitation plate. Ensure that you position it as close as you can to the outboard, and if necessary, slide it back. The legs or the mounting bracket for the engine mount require some moderate flexing so that they accommodate the outboard’s motor spine.
  2. As you hold the motor in place, drill six 3/8 inch holes, using the motor hole pattern. It is even better if you can find someone to hold the motor for you.
  3. Insert an insulator pad between the engine mount motor and the cavitation plate.
  4. Insert the six bolts and then secure them from below.
  5. Pass the cable through the cable hooks and the boat, but make sure to level enough loosening in the cable to enable easy raising and lowering of the primary engine.
  6. As you finish wiring the motor, ensure that you utilize the provided adhesive heat shrink. This will reduce the chances of corrosion to the motor parts.

How Fast Does a Trolling Motor go?

One of the most common thoughts people have about trolling motors is the bigger, the better. This is NOT true! Here is a tip, however – trolling motors are chosen by thrust and prop pitch, not speed. When you change the prop pitch, you can exchange the boat acceleration for top speed.

What this means is that higher thrusting power will NOT move a boat faster, necessarily. In fact, two 50 pound thrust motors do not really move your boat faster than one 25 thrust pound motor. High thrust 12-volt motors are best for heavier, bigger boats that have large loads.

The maximum speed that a trolling motor has is 5 miles per hour, and this is regardless of the thrust amounts it has. Smaller boats will reach the speed with most motors, while larger boats may require larger motors to get to this speed.

Well, what is the difference between horsepower and thrust?

Horsepower is the measure of “work” performed by the motor, while thrust is a static measure of force.

One horsepower is equal to 550 pounds of work for every second.

If you thought there was a direct correlation of horsepower to thrust, think again – there is no direct relation. On the contrary of what many people think, fifteen pounds of thrust does not equal one horsepower.

How does thrust relate to speed?

Thrust is only a measurement of pulling or pushing power, so high thrust power does not really men higher speed. Speed is a factor of motor R.P.M. and prop pitch.

What Batteries are Needed in Trolling Motors?

You may not think much about it, but reliable trolling motor batteries will help you get the most of your boat when you go for fishing adventures. Similar to most electric motors, there are specific batteries that are needed for trolling motors, and these will discharge electricity over long periods.

To choose the best batteries, there are certain factors you need to keep certain factors in mind:

Deep cycle batteries versus dual purpose batteries

Both of these batteries have designs that slowly release large percentages of their total capacity over time. This is different from starting batteries, which discharges large amounts of power quickly to start up engines. This definitely means that you cannot use starting batteries for your trolling motor.

You can use dual purpose engines for two purposes – starting engines, as well as deep cycling. They’re good to giving trolling motors and other 12 volt devices consistent power supplies. They offer good, but not great, performance for deep cycling. They are best if you want only one battery for your boat, meaning both its inboard and outboard motor and the trolling motor.

On the other hand, deep cycle (DC) batteries specifically release their electrical capacity over a long period. This is why they end up lasting much longer than dual-purpose batteries when you use them with a trolling motor. They give excellent performance as well, even from small DC batteries. They are best for when you are looking for batteries specifically for your trolling motor.

In light of this, what should you look for in a trolling motor battery?

Amp Hours: This measure is used to rate deep cycle batteries. It is a measure of the amount of charge that is within the battery, which allows one amp of current to discharge over one hour.

What this means is that the number of amp hours the battery has is a measure of how much electricity it can store. Because this will set the time you can use it for your motor, it is very important to know the specifics. For dual-purpose batteries, it is unfortunately not always easy to know the amp hours, making it challenging to know the total time that they can power the motor.

A general rule is that small batteries measure about 25 to 50 Ah, and larger cycle batteries tend to be 100 Ah.

Power system: Most batteries you will get are 12 volts. If you have a trolling motor that requires power of 34 or 36 volts, you will need two or three batteries to power it. Be aware of the requirements of your battery system.

Maintenance of the system: Most modern AGM batteries do not require maintenance on your part, so they are easier to own compared to older batteries. They are also safer to use regardless of their position, whether upside down or right side up.

Certain deep cycle and dual purpose batteries have a thick plastic casing to protect the battery from vibration. This, in addition to AGM technology, has excellent features that lengthen the life of the battery.  This is my favorite battery for my trolling motor which can be found on Amazon for a great price.

With consideration to all the factors mentioned above, I have put together this list of the best trolling motor batteries.

How to Charge a Trolling Motor Battery

Before you think about charging your batteries, make sure you do some maintenance, even on the so-called “maintenance-free” batteries. Make sure you charge them immediately after fishing sessions. This is because when they sit for long times under partial charge, their performance and life begins to drop due to sulfates.

Charging them eliminates this problem, at least temporarily, because it returns sulfates to the electrolyte solution from the plates, though not all of it leaves. The sulfates will eventually build up on the plates, and this will ultimately lead to internal resistance to charging. For this reason, you can add a “cleansing agent” to wet-cell batteries. On the contrary, you can always apply a preventive oil on your battery to make sure this doesn’t happen for a long time. I use this one from Amazon, it is very cheap and does a great job so far.

The second thing to check is signs of corrosion on the battery terminals because it leads to incomplete charging. It can be caused by overcharging, heat, overfilled, or when the battery releases gases during charging. You can clean this through a solution of water and baking soda, then coating the area with electrolytic grease when cleaned.

Before you put the battery cable on the terminal, apply a thin bead of silicon on the base of the battery post and then install a felt battery washer. Afterward, you can coat everything with grease to prevent contact with the battery gas.

When dealing with wet cells, open the cell caps and check the electrolyte levels before you begin charging. 1/8 inch of fluid should cover the battery plates. The fluid level should not be at the top of the cell but should be about 1/4 inch below the mouth of the cell. This will allow for the electrolyte to expand when hot. If the cells are down, carefully fill them using distilled water.

To get the most from the battery, it is vital to measure the charge that you are giving by examining the battery charge level. For example, 40 percent charge on 100-amp battery requires 60 amps of charge. If the charge rate is 10 amps, the battery will charge in six hours. You do not want to leave it for too long – too much time ultimately damages the battery. This is probably the best bank battery charger on the market which can be found on Amazon. 

In What Water Conditions can You use a Trolling Motor?

The answer ultimately depends on what fishing grounds you use. Trolling motors have different designs and specifications, all catering for salt water and fresh water conditions. Some of the factors to consider include:

Are the waters fresh, salty or rough?

What is the boat style – is it deep or shallow?

Do you want a bow, transom or engine mount motor?

Saltwater motors have added protection that prevents them from corrosion from the salt water, and this will make them more expensive. To lengthen the life of your equipment, make sure to wash your motor and fishing equipment thoroughly with fresh water, and do this immediately after fishing excursions.

How to Repair a Trolling Motor

Switches – this is one of the biggest issues in trolling motors. The switch is not easily adjusting to your demands according to your speed.

Armature – water can get in the case, or the brushes can wear out (especially in 24 or 36-volt batteries).

The shaft has two parts – the outer casing, and an inner structure known as the armature. Examine the shaft fires and find out whether the armature is broken or okay because problems can easily start from there.

Once this is done, clean the armature and put a new bearing in it, as well as adding some new seals to prevent leaking of water into the motor.

Final Thoughts

Trolling motors are very good when you are an avid angler because you definitely need a tool to help you move through the water. Just make sure to choose a proper one, considering your fishing ground and requirements, and maintain it as much as possible.

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Best Trolling Motor Reviews 2018

Best Trolling Motor Reviews 2018: The thing about fishing is that you need a solid trolling motor. A great trolling motor will allow you to move around the water without scaring all of the fish away. Moreover, for those of you who own inflatable boats, trolling motors can act as a main power source. Just keep in mind that trolling motors are pretty different from traditional motors and you will need additional equipment. For instance, you will need a great trolling motor battery to make sure you don’t get stuck on the water. Here is an article I have written that will outline everything about trolling motors.

In this article, we have explored five different trolling motors that are the best at what they do, and also give you some tips on what you should look out for when purchasing one.

Best Trolling Motor

Newport Vessels NV-Series 46 lb

Newport Vessels NV-Series 46 lb

Newport Vessels NV-Series 36 lb

Newport Vessels NV-Series 36 lb

Newport Vessels 55 lb

Newport Vessels 55 lb

Minn Kota Endura C2 40 lb

Minn Kota Endura C2 40 lb

Minn Kota Endura C2 30 lb

Minn Kota Endura C2 30 lb

Rating: 4.4/5Rating: 4.3/5Rating: 4.3/5Rating: 4.5/5Rating: 4.7/5
Boat weight: Up to 2300 lbBoat weight: Up to 1800 lbBoat weight: Up to 2750 lbBoat weight: Up to 2000 lbBoat weight: Up to 1500 lb
Salt/FreshwaterSalt/FreshwaterSalt/FreshwaterFreshwaterFreshwater
Thrust Power: 46 lbsThrust Power: 36 lbsThrust Power: 55 lbsThrust Power: 40 lbsThrust Power: 40 lbs
Shaft length: 30 inShaft length: 30 inShaft length: 30 inShaft length: 36 inShaft length: 36 in
Cost: $$Cost: $$Cost: $$$Cost: $$$Cost: $

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Newport NV-Series 46lb transom mounted electric motor – best for ease of use

Newport Vessels NV-Series 46 lb

 

If you are searching for a motor that promises to give you an easy ride in fishing regardless of the environment, the Newport NV-Series is your answer.

This motor contains a 46lb thrust, which doubles up as quiet, efficient and cool, allowing you to fish the whole day without the risk of overheating the motor or scaring away the target fish. It also comes with a 30-inch composite fiberglass shaft that is highly durable and strong. The shaft is also adjustable to enable you to switch proper depth placements, depending on all water conditions that you are in.

The telescoping handle measures up to six meters, while it comes in eight speeds – three in reverse and five forward – this puts total control of the motor at you fingertips. With just the touch of a button, you can extend the handle length as well.

The motor comes with a 5-point LED battery meter. The display is very bright, and provides you with immediate charge readings of the 12V Deep Cycle (DC) battery, while the hardware is optimized for both freshwater and saltwater conditions. This is because its stainless steel, magnesium and zinc hardware enhances its durability. The motor has a very sleek design that allows it to fit not only all Newport vessels, but also other fishing boats, inflatable boats, aluminium fishing boats, kayaks and fixed transom small boats.

Pros

  • It moves easily through water
  • Can adapt to both fresh and saltwater easily
  • Has a strong, durable build
  • Quiet mechanism
  • Can be used on various boat types
  • User friendly
  • Good performance for the price

 

Cons

  • The variable speed switch tends to increase or decrease the speed unexpectedly

Newport NV-Series 36lb saltwater transom trolling motor – best for smaller workloads

Newport Vessels NV-Series 36 lb

 

This NV series 36lb motor, this is the best low-cost transom motor for small workloads when you want to work for longer without sacrificing performance. It is a multi-purpose motor that has been constructed in the highest quality materials that are durable and ensure favourable performance for years.

Its shaft is composed of composite fiberglass that has durable nylon mount, and has an easily adjustable shaft length measuring up to 30 inches, and its build allows it to fit all Newport vessels, as well as dinghies, kayaks, aluminium fishing boats, inflatable boats, fishing boats, and inflatables with a transom.

The motor has eight speeds, both five forward and three reverse and uses a Deep Cycle battery of 12V. The motor is easily adjustable to both saltwater and freshwater use, and it comes with a 5-Point LED meter to indicate the life of your battery.

Pros

  • Light and portable, as well as ease of use
  • Durable, can be used in both fresh and salt water
  • Quiet mechanism
  • The multi-speed controls allow for greater control

Cons

  • In some cases, the head of the motor is not sealed, so saltwater gets into the controls and ruins the machine.

Newport Vessels 55lb 8 speed electric troll motor – best for saltwater conditions

Newport Vessels 55 lb

 

 

This motor promises to give you a wonderful performance in terms of efficiency in saltwater conditions. It has a 55lb thrust that not only gives it power, but also a quiet mechanism that retains the coolness of the motor. This gives it high levels of performance when you use it even in long periods.

The composite fiberglass shaft measures up to 30 inches, which makes it very adjustable and is very strong, so you can adjust the water placement in all water conditions. The 6-inch telescoping handle and eight speeds (three reverse and five forward) give you greater control over its operation.

It also comes with an ergonomic handle for your comfort, and a 5 LED battery meter that gives immediate readings of your Deep Cycle 12V marine battery charge levels. The hardware is specially designed for use in saltwater conditions – this is due to the magnesium, stainless steel and zinc hardware. You can use it with any boat type because of its sleek build.

Pros

  • It is very good for all boat types, especially small boats
  • Durable build
  • Works well for its price range

Cons

  • It lacks a clear indicator between the speed changes
  • It lacks a quiet mechanism
  • It does not perform well in areas with weeds or other vegetation

Minn Kota Endura C2 40 Freshwater trolling motor – best for durability

Minn Kota Endura C2 40 lb

 

Unlike many of the motors on this list, the Minn Kota C2 40 motor performs very well in freshwater, so if you require a motor for use in this environment, this is a good option. Do not let its smaller size fool you; its performance is top notch.

This motor comes with a 12V freshwater motor that has high thrusts of 40lbs, while the shaft measures up to 36 inches. The tilt twist tiller and telescopic handle making 6 inches gives you easy speed control and steering, and the lever rock bracket gives you a solid mount. The special materials that compose the shaft resist warping, flexibility and UV damage.

The motor has a quiet mechanism that provides a long battery life and the target fish are not scared off. The eight adjustable speeds provide you with maximum levels of control.

In addition, the motor comes with a lifetime warranty, while the motor is covered by two-year warranty.

Pros

  • Have a very smooth and quiet running mechanism
  • Very easy to use and steer
  • The motor and its components are very durable
  • The variable speeds work well and are easy to adjust

Cons

  • You cannot take it for too long for fishing trips – the battery can suddenly die out.
  • The wires lack a common plug connector, and they are too short

Minn Kota Endura C2 30 Freshwater Trolling motor – best for freshwater use

Minn Kota Endura C2 30 lb

This is another in the series of Minn Kota trolling motors that is built to last, and brings together the aspects of function and form.it is actually one of the best freshwater motors you can get.

It is maximized for freshwater environments, and the 12V DC motor allows for a thrust level of 30, as well as the shaft length measuring 30 meters. The telescoping handle measures 6 inches, and it has a twist tiller for maximum comfort in control. It also comes with a lever rock bracket, which offers a solid mount for your motor.

The battery has a quiet, cool mechanism that enhances its life and does not scare the target fish away. It has eight adjustable speeds – five forward and three reverse – which gives you maximum control levels over the motor.

In addition, the shaft comes with a lifetime warranty that gives you peace of mind, even as you purchase the motor, and the machine itself is covered by a two-year warranty.

Pros

  • Gives plenty of thrusting power, wile retaining long battery life
  • Lightweight and easily portable
  • Has a quiet mechanism
  • Great value for the price

Cons

  • The reverse gear changes are not very efficient, unlike the forward gears
  • The switch is fragile and breaks easily

What to Look for in a Trolling Motor

Many buyers make the mistake of purchasing a trolling motor that will not help them in their needs. You need to look out for several things when you search for your next purchase.

Know and understand the difference between transom and bow motors

There are two main types of boating motors – and to install them, you need to have enough space, as well as a mounting bracket that adjusts its housing in the proper position. There needs to be a flat bottom, platform that makes it easier to have a sturdy setup.

Bow motors are those that are placed at the front of the boat, and it is best for large boats that are past 14 feet because of the increased handling and speed requirements. Increasing mobility results because bow motors move the boat and pull it through the water. Transom motors do the opposite – they push the boat through the water.

Transom motors are very versatile and work with all types of vessels since they clamp to the stern (back) areas of boats, though they work best in smaller boats. They also provide enhanced trolling and positioning application. In fact, these are the best boats you can use during fishing in harsher climates because they keep your boat in a steady position.

Know the thrusting power

The thrusting power of motors is the strength amounts that are needed to move vessels through water. This means that the higher the thrust power, the better your boat moves in a water boat. When the boat motor does not have enough thrust, it becomes significantly harder to maneuver around harsh conditions such as high waves and snags.

A general rule is that boat size directly relates to thrust power. For instance, 30 pounds of thrust power is required for boats that are under 14 feet. For boats that are 22 feet or larger, they need thrust power of 101 pounds for term to move easily.

What this means is that, if you can purchase the largest motor that you can within the confines of your boat, it is better for you. Do not buy motors that are too large for your boat; they will “dwarf” its size. Do not buy motors that are too small either; your boat will be under powered. Be sure to choose your motor wisely and measure all the variables before purchasing.

Examine the length of the shaft

Shaft sizes determine the control that you have over your boat. For optimum performance, it is best to find a balance between long and short shafts.

Long shafts have problems in shallow water, while short shafts cannot be submerged in hard conditions. For a safe and carefree boating experience, it is good to find the correct shaft.

How do you find a correct shaft length, then?

Know the height of the bow or the stern (where you will mount the motor). small boats such as canoes require small shafts that keep them moving efficiently at higher rates, while deep V bats need shafts of longer length. Knowing the correct shaft length that is compatible with your boat goes a long way to ensure the boat operates optimally.

Motor batteries and voltage amounts

The trolling battery motors come in three amounts – 12, 24, and 36 volts. What this means is that 12-volt motors use one 12-volt deep cycle (DC) marine batteries, while 24-volt motors use two 12-volt batteries, and 36-volt motors use three DC batteries.

The simplest and most affordable to operate are the 12-volt motors. The only drawback is that they do not provide the equivalent amount of power that 24 and 36-voltbatteries will give you. The 24 and 36-volt batteries enable you to fish for longer periods, and give enough thrust power that allows for smoother rides on the water.

The size of your thrust motor, again depends on the size of your boat. If the boat is under 16 feet, the best battery to use is the 12-volt battery. This is because it allows the boat to properly work under harsh conditions. If the boat is over 16 feet, it is better to use a 24 or 36-volt battery to ensure the boat runs efficiently.

For you to get maximum power from your boat, be sure to purchase quality batteries. Batteries that are high quality will ensure longevity in your use of the boat, and this will prevent overheating and breaking down of the machine.

Should you go for a foot motor or a hand motor?

Your boating style as well as the boat size will end up setting the motor type you will require.

Foot motors will allow for a hands-free experience, which leads to the motor being easy to use and can be used at any position in the boat. They are very good, especially for beginners who desire something simple to operate. The drawback with foot motors is that they clutter the boat, and this can be very inconveniencing when your boat has multiple people.

They also have lower rates of response compared to other models, so they will take some time to adjust to.

Hand motors on the other hand, allow for responses in real time. This will help you to maneuver the boat at an efficient level that corresponds to your motion. Because they do not clutter the deck, they are very good when there are multiple people on your boat. In the end, they are best if you want maximum control of your boat.

The drawback to hand motors is that they must be controlled from the bow of the boat. They are also slightly more challenging to control because your hands are not always on the rod when steering, so it is best if advanced fishers use this motor type.

Indicators of the battery life

Trolling motors usually consist of battery gauges,and these are located in the head of the unit. They gauge the power that remains in the battery, and this helps you to know the amount of power that it needs before it is placed on a charger.

Self directed motors

Self directed motors can be very useful, because they follow depth shorelines and contours. The recommendation however, is that you use either a foot or hand motor since they enable you to control the vessel easier.

Extra features

This is really not that important, and only depends on your preference and budget. Do you want a high-tech motor or a basic one? Some newer trolling motors come with features like GPS features that assist you in tracking larger numbers of fish. Other features can be additional durability in saltwater, wireless piloting capabilities and autopilot features.

The next question to ask, is the kind of trolling motors that are best for saltwater.

Choosing a Proper Saltwater Trolling Motor

Regardless of the boat you use, saltwater grounds can be intimidating because you are not sure if the motor you are using is right for it. You therefore need to conduct your homework before you spend your money on one.

Choose one that uses 316-grade stainless steel

This is the most important feature. When the boat has lower grade stainless steel, or cheap steel fittings that are disguised as stainless steel, it will start to corrode after the first trip out on the water. Within a few times, it will turn into rusty junk.

Fish boxes should be ample size

There is nothing as discouraging as running out of room in your fish box, unless you want your fishing trip to be cut short. Your fish box must always have insulation, and keep in mind that better quality ones drain overboard, not pump.

If you insist on having a pump, look for those that are diaphragm types, followed by macerator types. Stay away from bulge pumps mounted in fish boxes – these are bound to clog from grime and scales, and they will not last for long.

Raw water washing sessions

This can apply to freshwater fishing as well. When there is fishing, be guaranteed that there is going to be fish blood and baits that are stepped on. There is always going to be a mess, and when this mess is not cleaned up, the mess is always going to be bad. For this reason, you need to have strong raw water wash downs frequently, in fact after every fishing trip.

In light of this, stay away from live well or wash down pump-share arrangements because they lack the pressure that you need to wash away the gore, and it also shortens the life of the pump since it does more work.

Strong construction

For anglers, it is always a guarantee that they will push harder than non-fishing pals even on similar boats, so you need to make sure that your boat can take the extra burden.

What is the transom access on the boat?

Many modern outboard powered fish boats have a common deign flaw – they have wide transoms, which ultimately force you to always avoid the outboards. This will make your fishing outings harder because you cannot work your rod tip around the props.

Make sure it fits your perfect hull design

you need to ensure that your boat has the optimum design that you want, otherwise, your fishing adventures will not be enjoyable. If you enjoy making long runs in all conditions as well as offshore angling and trolling, you would rather obtain a deep V boat. On the other hand, if you enjoy light-tackling or flat angling, then semi-V boats would be best for you. Also, choose a boat with maximum stability if you want to explore drift fishing.

A point of note – a lot of trolling motors are very easy to install, as they can be clamped conveniently. If you have a trolling motor that needs actual installation, which involves modification and mounting, you need to have plenty of working space before proceeding with the installation. You do not want a trolling motor in a cramped space.

Conclusion

Purchasing a trolling motor is a huge investment – that is why you need to do your research properly. For this round up, we found that the best trolling motor is the Newport series 36lb trolling motor. We have chosen it because of its ability to handle smaller workloads, which is very convenient especially if you are a hobbyist angler – and its durability is very high, so it can serve you well for a long time.

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Best Inflatable Boat

Here are my Best Inflatable Boat Reviews 2018

Best Inflatable Boat

Intex Explorer K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak

Intex Explorer K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak

Intex Seahawk 4, 4-Person Inflatable Boat

Intex Seahawk 4, 4-Person Inflatable Boat

Intex Excursion 4, 4-Person Inflatable Boat

Intex Excursion 4, 4-Person Inflatable Boat

Intex Mariner 4, 4-Person Inflatable Boat

Intex Mariner 4, 4-Person Inflatable Boat

Intex Seahawk 3, 3-Person Inflatable Boat

Intex Seahawk 3, 3-Person Inflatable Boat

Rating: 4.3/5Rating: 4.3/5Rating: 4.1/5Rating: 4.0/5Rating: 4.2/5
Fishing: NoFishing: YesFishing: YesFishing: YesFishing: Yes
Pump Included: YESPump Included: YESPump Included: YESPump Included: YESPump Included: YES
Motor Capable: NoMotor Capable: YesMotor Capable: YesMotor Capable: YesMotor Capable: Yes
Max Weight: 400 lbsMax Weight: 814 lbsMax Weight: 850 lbsMax Weight: 880 lbsMax Weight: 790 lbs
Cost: $$Cost: $$Cost: $$Cost: $$$$Cost: $$

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Intex Explorer K2 Kayak

Intex Explorer K2 Kayak, 2-Person Inflatable Kayak

 

One of the best things every person has acknowledged after a first or second ride on the Intex Explorer K2 is its tendency to perform in stronger rivers. It may be true that the inflatable boats have been constructed to work in lakes and rivers, but this boat has proven to act well even in harsh waters due to the way it has been built; strong and stable. Now with the Intex Explorer K2, those who find themselves to be the happiest while in a dynamic boat can enjoy an exclusive and a stirring ride.

Protection from harm:

The colors that are displayed by this inflatable boat along with the contrasting shades of water you get to see, makes sure that your journey is free of mishaps or casualties. With the color painted on this boat, you can never miss out on the surface level of water thus guaranteeing your security at all times. This means that now you will not have to think twice before letting your loved ones on board or bringing your children out in the water.

Price tag:

The first thing that every buyer, mostly the one on a budget looks at in a product is the price tag. That is certainly what you should be doing before purchasing the Intex Explorer K2 since it is available at quite an affordable rate. This inflatable boat is what you need to make all your desires of having the perfect boat with no issues ever, knowing your purchase was worthwhile.

With a price like this for an inflatable boat in comparison to others in the market, now you can enjoy life on your beautiful boat in addition to having extra to pay for accessories that can modify your boat. If you are looking for a very versatile boat and a great price, this is the best inflatable boat for you.

Specifications

  • Provides an easy to adjust detachable seat to remain in a relaxed state
  • Inflatable boat extends to 20 x 36 x 123 inches
  • Easy to carry skeg added for directional support
  • Color of the Kayak gives a clear sight to make sure there aren’t any casualties

Customer Reviews

Customers are absolutely obsessed with this inflatable boat! Deciding to put it in action is a task which requires less labour or exertion. You can easily work your way, making turns whilst using it. With the aid of the presence of seats which can be detached, many people on board can undergo a smooth, memorable ride on this boat. The Intex Explorer K2 comes with a promise of fulfilling needs of the customers and surely fulfills it.

Conclusion

The Intex Explorer K2 will give you everything it talks about thereby making every dollar spent gives you a good feeling. With its power to provide balance, safety and an unforgettable experience with family and friends or by yourself, waste no more time in deciding whether you want to purchase the Intex Explorer K2 available on Amazon for a great price!

Intex Seahawk 4, 4-Person Inflatable Boat Set

Intex Seahawk 4, 4-Person Inflatable Boat

 

This world is full of people who like to enjoy some time out of their busy lives to sit and relax whilst being surrounded by nature. However, not most of them have the resources or the budget to afford a boat to make that happen. For this purpose, an affordable Inflatable boat like the Intex Seahawk 4 is here to fulfill those desires. Despite of not providing as much space as regular boats do, there are a number of factors which lead to Inflatable boats being a preference. Due to this boat having great stability it makes it one of the best inflatable fishing boats.

Spacious:

If you look at Intex Seahawk, you will realize its ability to provide enough space in comparison to other Inflatable boats in the market. Where the usual inflatable boat offer space for 2 people, the Intex Seahawk has enough are to fit in up to 4 people. If you think that too many people on board would end up risking lives while turning sides, you are not to worry! This inflatable boat gives the balance needed.

Modernized:

Keeping in mind the reviews of the customers, this boat may not be ideal when it comes to White Water Rafting. However, its versatile attitude drives customers towards it. Due to this, many buyers can perhaps shift to accommodating a motor if they are not a fan of paddling. Its ability to remain in an improved state makes it every buyer’s foremost choice!

Specifications

  • Inflatable Boat constructed for amusement purposes, engaging in camping and fishing trips
  • Has the capacity to fit in up to 4 people
  • 2 air chambers provided for safety in case one of them gets damaged
  • Front and rear inflatable cushions
  • 2 fishing rod holders at the rear
  • Welded Oarlocks, Oar holders, and Oars also present
  • Includes the pump for easy and quick inflation and deflation
  • Measurements are equal to 133 x 19.5 x 50 inches

Customer Reviews

This boat is quite a ride to relax and enjoy your time out in the water. The task of setting it up is rather simple as well as the process of deflating and returning to original position. Also, many buyers enjoyed camping and fishing trips on it without having to worry about renting a boat or purchasing an expensive one.

Conclusion

The Intex Seahawk 4 can rightly be considered a fun ride in the water which complete ease. This inflatable boat is easy to manage especially during the winter season where you won’t have to worry about allocating it a large space as it fits anywhere easily. All in all, the Intex Seahawk 4 Inflatable Boat Set is a within-the-budget and can be easily put to use by beginners for amusement purposes. Furthermore, for the price; this may be the best inflatable boat that can comfortably fit 4 friends.

Intex Excursion 4, 4-Person Inflatable Boat Set

Intex Excursion 4, 4-Person Inflatable Boat

 

Intex Excursion 4 is here to officially become a part of your life after impressing you with its unique, elaborate features and a design like no other boat presently. So, if you have a group of friends who enjoy some time by the sea or someone with whom you would want to set out on a short yet exciting trip, the Intex Excursion 4 should be your first pick! This is your ultimate inflatable fishing raft if you make it so. Here is why:

Boat Construction:

The Intex Excursion 4 can manage space for almost four people. You will find two seats attached at the back for maximum strength and balance while maintaining eye contact with each other.  The inflatable I-beam floor in the inflatable boat makes it right choice made by you since that way it will offer complete durability furthermore being the solid material to guarantee ease for members on board. Continuing on this boats great construction, you dont have to feel nervous about using this inflatable boat as your fishing boat!

Attached to the boat are welded oar locks which have the strength to avoid any sort of damage despite excessive pressure under certain circumstances, since the oars are made up of aluminum which makes them durable. An aluminum construction allows your inflatable boat to remain free of rusting forever as well as light-weight.

Grab line:

A grab line offered with the inflatable boat would mean that your security in under zero threat. With the help of a grab line, you can easily consider the safety of every passenger on board whether it is a child or even an adult. An extended grab handle on the bow attached to the boat allows a quick and quite an easy process of managing the boat before and after the trip.

Specifications

  • 2 fishing rod holders to help grab lunch during your trip
  • Gear pouch regarded as additional accessory
  • Inflatable seat cushions to provide comfort to passengers
  • Motor mount fittings fixed to the boat

Customer Reviews

It is proven through the review shared that a trip to the mountain lake on the Intex Mariner 4 Inflatable Boat Set can end up being exciting and quite eventful. The price paid for the purchase did justice with its easy performance and the ability to allow paddling for hours. One of the customers experimented letting the boat remain inflated and using it the very next day and it performed just like it did the day before. Customers are very happy taking this inflatable boat out for their fishing trips!

Conclusion

Available on Amazon, the Intex Excursion 4 is considered the perfect choice for a quick or long trip with family or friends for fishing or camping purposes or even a trip to enjoy the river. This means that if you are in search of an inflatable boat which can give you the comfort needed to sit back and enjoy nature without having to worry about functioning of the boat, the Intex Excursion 4 is for you. To add, this boat and the next one on the list are the best inflatable fishing boats.

Intex Mariner 4, 4-Person Inflatable Boat Set

Intex Mariner 4, 4-Person Inflatable Boat

 

Even though the Intex Mariner 4 Inflatable Boat Set may be considered a little pricey compared to other boats, after looking at its extensive shape and long-lasting guarantee, anyone would be willing to spend a little more for the purchase of this Inflatable boat. A good quality boat like the Intex Mariner 4 Inflatable Boat Set is one which offers an advanced level of support for the boat which further makes its purchase worthwhile. If you are not worred too much about money or you would simply like the best; this is the best inflatable boat for you.

Storage:

It’s easy to store the necessary tools or gear in your bag and set out on trip in your Intex Mariner 4 Inflatable Boat Set. Furthermore, this boat comes with a lot of extra on board space for storage making it one of the best fishing boats.

The Intex Mariner 4 Inflatable Boat Set provides its buyers with hard base thereby allowing the boat to ultimately be a good quality product in the market. For someone on a budget being offered this boat should not think twice before purchase.

Specifications

  • Powerful molecular structure of the plastic allowing a strong resistance to avoid damage from scraping or extreme exposure to sunlight
  • 4 Boston valves present at the prime hull chamber for rapid filling and deflation process
  • An inflatable keel helps in achieving an increased hold as well as managing the boat
  • Weight Capacity is estimated to be 880 Lbs which is 400 kgs
  • Inflated Dimensions are 328 x 145 x 48cm

Customer Reviews

“Best boat EVER!”These are the words of a customer who has a great sense of passion for sea life, always being on the boat to make the most out of summer. Customers have found it easy to handle the boat. With its “hard bottom” and “thick, strong sides”, you are in for a mind-blowing experience.

For the price being offered for the boat, it is considered a great product. Buyers find it a little difficult to carry. A little side advice by one other customer is an electric pump to make your trip easy and less exhausting, while managing the boat.

Conclusion

If you need a day of complete peace or an exciting day full of fun activities to do with your friends, you need the Intex Mariner 4 Inflatable Boat Set to spend an eventful on the lake or the river. With a spacious area for four people, this boat is set to give you an exciting experience.

Also, with an additional two fishing rod holders, you can arrange for a delicious snack by catching some fish while you’re out in the sea. The availability of PVC material allows the Intex Mariner 4 Inflatable Boat Set to be durable enough to withstand pressure no matter how strong it is as well as for the deflation process to be rapid.

Personally, I see this is the best inflatable boat on this list. It has everyone one wants or needs in a boat. It can be used for leisurely activities on the water or your go to inflatable fishing boat!

Intex Seahawk 3, 3-Person Inflatable Boat Set

Intex Seahawk 3, 3-Person Inflatable Boat

 

If you are someone looking for a boat that can give you a lifetime of precious, relaxing moments you can keep with yourself forever, look no further. The Intex Seahawk 3, designed for enough space for 3 people, can give you that joy while you are on an adventure with a group of friends or with family, with an affordable price tag.

Design

The design of the Intex Seahawk definitely stands out as unique and modern. Created for providing comfort to its buyers, this inflatable boat will act as a backbone for you and the people with you on a trip to the lake with the help of its heavy duty, puncture resistant PVC.

Inflatable I-beam floor

One of its striking features which make the Intex Seahawk boat become your first and only choice is the Inflatable I-beam floor. By providing a sturdy base to the inflatable boat, it ultimately adds sharpness to the Intex Seahawk making its passengers feel comfortable, who end up experiencing a carefree trip.

Specifications

  • A heavy duty, puncture resistant PVC too add amenity and stamina
  • Including an inflatable I-beam floor for creating sharpness at the base for the ease of passengers
  • The boat has 3 air chambers where others come to aid if one gets punctured during the journey
  • Two 48 inch aluminum oars included as additional accessories
  • An Intex high-output pump helps in easy set up by a quick inflation process as well as deflation
  • The 2 Boston valves allow the filling process to take place instantaneously as well as deflating the boat
  • Dimensions after Inflation are 9’8″ x 4’6″ x 1’5″
  • Maximum weight capacity is 790 lbs

Customer Reviews

Almost every customer has experienced a memorable, fun trip to the lake on the Intex Seahawk. Although, one of the customers said to remain cautious and to avoid sun exposure for long periods as it can harm the boat. As shared in one of the mentioned reviews, the boat takes less than 1 minute to inflate. Furthermore, this boat also has a very fast deflation time. Also, it is quite easy to fold it and store in the truck without excessive pressure. If you are someone looking to enjoy a short trip with nothing complex coming in your way, this is the best inflatable boat worth spending your money on. If there was three words to be used to describe what the Intex Seahawk is like, one of the customers has done that for you, “Great, sturdy, lightweight boat.”

Conclusion

This Inflatable boat is something easy to manage on a great price. It is highly recommended for people looking for easy handling. In my opinion, this is the best inflatable boat for kids because of how safe and easy to manage the boat is.

 

If you are still unsure about which inflatable boat is right for you I highly recommend that you read this article about inflatable boats.