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Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat
I wish to mount an electric trolling motor on a single person, inflatable pontoon boat (Bucks Bag Alpine). I'm not fond of mounting it at the rear (hard to reach) or the front (gets in the way of fishing). Has anyone had any experience of mounting a trolling motor on the outside of the pontoon? Will it cause the pontoon to run in circles?

Thanks.
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Re: [Darylchan] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
I have mounted electric trolling motors on tubes, toons, yaks, rafts...everything but bathtubs. If you can dream it you can do it. I have seen several canoes with side mounts.

The biggie is fabbing a mount that is strong enough to move the whole pontoon. No problem with the directional. You just have to stay on the control handle with a delicate touch. It will want to shimmy one way or another. But it's all a matter of lift, thrust and drag. No different than if you mounted on the back but were dragging a big basket of fish on one side. Once you get it running steady in the right direction you are good.

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Re: [TubeDude] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
Great that's good news. I'll fabricate something and see how it works.
Thanks!
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Re: [Darylchan] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
Welcome to the site Daryl, I'm going to move your post to our float tubing section but here is a link to something that might help:
http://www.bigfishtackle.com/...d;page=unread#unread

WH2


BFT administrator and moderator
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Re: [Darylchan] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
Not sure if your pontoon is hard or soft. I've fished a lot of lakes that are electric only. And hard pontoon boats had their own mounting bracket on the stern. Crazy as some had 175 lb thrust motors. So if your not inclined to make one, I'm sure your local dealer can hook you up.


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Re: [gdn443] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
My Pontoon is an inflatable. It has two separate pontoons much like a catamaran. I don't know if I mounted a motor on the outside of one of the pontoons that it would track straight or would want to just push it in circles. Would I be able to just adjust the angle of the trolling motor to get it to track straight?
image/jpeg IMG_3221.jpg (550 KB)
(This post was edited by Darylchan on Jul 20, 2016, 8:07 AM)
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Re: [Darylchan] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
Darylchan wrote:
My Pontoon is an inflatable. It has two separate pontoons much like a catamaran. I don't know if I mounted a motor on the outside of one of the pontoons that it would track straight or would want to just push it in circles. Would I be able to just adjust the angle of the trolling motor to get it to track straight?

My guess is it will be harder to keep on track at SPEED than conventional mounting- without constant steering attention. But you can probably run slow enough to track straight, if you are satisfied with that. Also, you may want to mount the battery & motor in such a way that the 2 pontoons are equally immersed in all directions for better stability and tracking. Let us know how it works, as I am curious to know how it works out for you.

OE
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Re: [pontoonman] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
Well after much thought and and consideration from all of you guys about mounting locations for the trolling motor I decided to mount at the rear but not in the middle as my anchor system is located there. I can reach the trolling motor without having to turn totally around to the back.

I ended up using a section of wire shelving from Home Depot and secured it to the frame with stainless U-bolts. I mounted the wood block onto the shelf edge but found that the weight of the motor caused the shelf edge to bend substantially. I wasn't comfortable with it. I therefore added a length of aluminum stock to strengthen the motor mount.

It's now very solid. I just have to mount a plastic box to hold the battery.

Thanks to all of you for your input in helping me design this mount. I've attached photos of the mount.
image/jpeg IMG_3223.jpg (608 KB)
image/jpeg IMG_3224.jpg (576 KB)
image/jpeg IMG_3225.jpg (576 KB)
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Re: [Darylchan] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
Looks good, thanks for the pics.

Usually the tiller steering is locked at the best tracking position with the motor head orientation reversed when mounted like this. The steering is done with fins when the motor is pulling the toon backwards. A hose can be attached to act as a tiller extension for speed control. If you have the 6'-7' Alpine, there should be adjustment made to good balance at the level, including occupant. Short pontoons with low weight capacity and upturned ends can be quite sensitive to balance issues compared to float tubes, in my experience.

Hope this helps.

PM
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Re: [Darylchan] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
I started off with a motor on a Donut. Got a lot of looks at that setup.
I did in fact have a Bucks Bag Alpine as my first pontoon. Mine was the smaller Urethane models that came out first with the foot bar attached to tips of pontoon with nylon straps.
I made a deck for mine. I removed the head from my Minn Kota and attach PVC. I mounted it at the oar holder.
Here is my Sister inlaw using it:

Kept the motor straight pulling, and steered with fins.



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Re: [flygoddess] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
This is interesting Flygoddess. I'm going to study this. Thanks!
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Re: [pontoonman] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
pontoonman wrote:
Looks good, thanks for the pics.

Usually the tiller steering is locked at the best tracking position with the motor head orientation reversed when mounted like this. The steering is done with fins when the motor is pulling the toon backwards. A hose can be attached to act as a tiller extension for speed control. If you have the 6'-7' Alpine, there should be adjustment made to good balance at the level, including occupant. Short pontoons with low weight capacity and upturned ends can be quite sensitive to balance issues compared to float tubes, in my experience.

Hope this helps.

PM


It would be nice to have steering rigged to the troll motor in such a way that one can move forward for the front vision aspect, but I haven't seen any toons rigged in that way. If there is a lightweight troll motor with wireless control and GPS guided features, that might be the way to go. A light and compact version of this, for example:
http://www.cabelas.com/...182.uts#BVQAWidgetID

PM
(This post was edited by pontoonman on Jul 28, 2016, 9:23 PM)
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Re: [pontoonman] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
I set mine up like FG with the head backwards. But I like to run forward when I am not tied to another boat and either going up stream or going long distance. This video shows how I do it.

https://youtu.be/UF22kL6zTmU
(This post was edited by idahoron on Aug 1, 2016, 7:37 PM)
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Re: [idahoron] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
idahoron wrote:
I set mine up like FG with the head backwards. But I like to run forward when I am not tied to another boat and either going up stream or going long distance. This video shows how I do it.

https://youtu.be/UF22kL6zTmU[/quote]


Thanks Ron, that is really clever when going forward and seems to work very well for your setup! Also like the idea that you can reconfigure to the hands free backward travel mode which is better when fighting a fish. Great lesson and video presentation!

Also found another forward propulsion method that is used with shorter boats that are highly rockered and thus harder to balance on the level: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aQewmjAL04I The front mount might make things a little crowded up front. May not work if you have an apron or cutting board.

Now I'm looking around to find some way to propel a "V" tube with the rider facing forward at moderate speed, preferably hands free.

PM
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Re: [Darylchan] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
You probably would have to set up a rudder in the rear so it runs straight. I did so on my 10' bow mount jon boat since it was too front heavy the rear would swing around,or i'd put more weight in the back of the boat like a 5g bucket full of water.

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Re: [pontoonman] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
Hi Pontoonman,
The first youtube link doesn't work.
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Re: [Paulpro] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
Dropping oars in the water next to boat can do that. Kevin Anderson is a pro at this.
We have a 14' inflatable boat that we have used on still water. Dragging the oars is a great way to steer.

I have always turned the head on my electric motors. Pulling is easier and seems to use less power.
I have even found out you can steer with just your feet.

Ron is a perfect example at how productive this is with motor behind and out of the way.



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Re: [flygoddess] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
Do I need to put the trolling motor battery in a box on my inflatable pontoon boat? What is it's purpose? It's just a box, no electronics involved. What do you guys think? I think it's just another thing I have to buy and mount.
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Re: [Darylchan] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
Some boxes do have electronics in them. Mine does. It is also added protection with acid batteries should they tip.
Old Troller can tell you about that.
If you have an AGM battery you should be fine without one.



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Re: [flygoddess] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
My battery sits on an open rack. If it tipped it would just spill into the lake so there's no worry about spilling onto my pontoon. So aside from spilling is there any other reason to use a battery box?
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Re: [Darylchan] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
Non that I can think of, other then keeping water off the connections. Those boxes are a bit of change for just being a box.
I have even used a plastic basket for my AGM, not sure why.



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Re: [Darylchan] Mounting trolling motor on a pontoon boat In reply to
Darylchan wrote:
My battery sits on an open rack. If it tipped it would just spill into the lake so there's no worry about spilling onto my pontoon. So aside from spilling is there any other reason to use a battery box?

A battery box firmly fastened to the boat keeps the heavy battery from moving/sliding around with wave action and corroding nearby metal parts with the vented vapors- even from sealed type. Tie downs may take more time and can loosen, vs. it's generally faster to slide in and remove from an open box.

PS. On my response message above, my copied first link which is inactive is live in the OP's message above.

PM