When you’re going fishing, you need to be stealthy. There’s no better way to creep up on your favorite honey hole than with a near-silent trolling motor.
Making your next cast without fish knowing you’ve even shown up gives you the ultimate power: the power of surprise.
A good trolling motor will also help keep your boat where you want it when the wind or waves aren’t cooperating with you.
Before you buy a new trolling motor, though, there’s a good bit of information you need to figure out in order to save yourself time, money, and the frustration of knowing you picked up the wrong gear and it doesn’t quite work for what you need. This article tries doing justice to the effort of providing you with all the information; but in case you need some more insight, please feel free to visit this cool website.
Bow-Mount vs Transom-Mount
Bow mounted trolling motors are great when you spend most of your time at the front of the boat. They can help you maintain the position in rougher waves and winds from where you’re standing.
Transom mounted trolling motors, on the other hand, mount to the rear of your boat. In general, it is harder to keep the front of your boat where you need it when you are utilizing a transom mounted motor.
For the most part, if you are using a larger gas engine, the bow-mounted trolling motor will be your best choice. For lakes where gas engines are banned, a transom-mounted trolling motor can get you where you need to go.
Freshwater vs Saltwater
While they may seem the same, freshwater trolling motors aren’t nearly as durable as saltwater motors. They are constructed from different materials because of the way saltwater tends to corrode your equipment.
That means you can expect to pay more for a motor that works well in saltwater.
It’s highly advised that you do not attempt to take a freshwater motor into the saltwater, even if you’re able to flush it out when you are done properly. Saltwater motors are sealed and utilize materials that resist corrosion.
Ignoring this advice could completely destroy your motor.
Thrust / Power Levels
Depending on the length of your boat, the thrust level you choose plays a large role in how quickly you’re going to be able to move under the power of the trolling motor.
If you have a small boat, in the 12 to 14-foot range, a 30lb thrust motor is usually more than enough. For medium boats, in the 15 to 16-foot range, you will be better off with a 40 to 50lb thrust motor. In larger boats, over 18 feet in length, you need quite a bit of motor. Upwards of 100lbs of thrust is not unheard of.
As a general rule of thumb, it’s always better to have more power than you think you will need, rather than getting on the water realizing your trolling motor isn’t strong enough to do what you need it to do.
Amount Of Power Consumed
For the most part, smaller trolling motors are going to require less power than larger ones.
Unless you have the ability to recharge your batteries on board your boat, you are going to be capped at the power provided by the number of cells you have.
For instance, if your motor requires 24 volts of power, you need to supply it with two 12 volt batteries. Once these batteries are drained your motor no longer has a power source, and you’re left relying on your gas engine.
A smaller motor will also draw less power from the batteries. Larger motors will drain your batteries more quickly. Where a small motor will get you 8 hours of use, a larger engine may only get 2 hours of use from the same battery.
A Few Extra Considerations-
- If you are going to be in waters that are high in debris and obstacles, it is usually worth your time to spend a few extra bucks buying a trolling motor with stainless steel or composite shaft. They stand up to abuse a lot better than other materials and metals.
- Before you buy, make sure that you are buying a motor with a weedless propellor and that you are able to buy replacement props in the event yours gets busted.
- The biggest area of failure is the mount. Make sure that whatever motor you are buying advertises a heavy-duty mount. In general, plastic parts on the mount are a terrible idea.
- If you are planning on buying a foot-controlled trolling motor, make sure that the included length of cable can reach across your entire boat, or wherever you intend to operate the motor from.
Sifting through all of the trolling motors available today can be a frustrating experience. If you follow the tips we’ve laid out here and know what you need ahead of time, saving money becomes a lot easier to do.