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nmbrowncom 11-05-2005 05:10 AM

trolling motors
i fish in the boston harbor area and have a 20'center console io. i'm looking for a top quality and reliable bow mounted trolling motor. i would prefer a remote control unit but i have concerns about reliability, and odviously do not want to be spending the season waiting for the manufacturer to get around to "honoring" the warranty. any suggestions, recommendations or ideas are much appreciated.

Bob Pauli 01-15-2006 07:21 PM

From a fresh water guy in California:

My 1992 boat came equipped with bow-mount trolling motor with a foot/cable control. It had a metal shaft that bent when it hit a rock. The motor direction was unstable, requiring constant "foot attention." Pure junk.

Unsatisfied, I purchased trolling motor #2, still a foot/cable system. Pure junk

Then I purchased #3, a MinnKota with an electronic foot control connected by wire to the trolling motor. I didn't trust the radio remote, and chose the wire connection--mistake. The foot control was unreliable, the wire connections intermittent. The unit had a magnetic compass/autopilot that had great promise, if only the foot control worked. The unit has a graphite-epoxy composite shaft that is indestructible.

Wandering through Scheel's Sporting Goods store in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, three years ago, I spotted a radio remote for my MinnKota. It replaced the foot/wire system with a unit that straps to your wrist like a watch. It is superb, reliable, the first bow mount trolling motor worthy of being installed on my boat.

Eddie 01-15-2006 08:58 PM

The Minnkota RipTide should be what you are looking for. Probably the 74 volt depending on how much your boat weighs and the current/wind. As for the steering, most people i know mount it on the bow and hand steer. Bob, how reliable do you think the romote (co-pilot?) would be in a salt environment? It sounds pretty good.

Smcdermott 01-15-2006 09:46 PM

I know you said bow mounted but have you considered the troll n tabs from either Bennet or Lenco. I don't have them myself but have been on boats with them and they seem worth it especially for fly guys that don't want to snag their line. I believe they are roughly twice the cost though.


jfbasser 01-16-2006 07:50 AM

I ran Motorguides for 15 years and recent track record is what is important here. MinnKota has produced the most and the best trolling motors by far over the last five years..Go with the bow hand mount like Eddie says with the remote...It is easy to remove to maintain and or sell if you don't like the performance.

FredA 01-16-2006 10:26 AM

I've been on a couple of boats with the trim and troll tabs and they seem pretty nifty to me. But aren't there reliability issues with them?

JimW 01-16-2006 11:37 AM

Don't forget to factor batteries into the price. Chances are your existing batteries are not going to cut it.

nmbrowncom 01-17-2006 06:19 AM

thanks for the help. i began kooking at the minn-kota with the co pilot. the dealer advised against the more expensive salt water model. he said that it merely has some of its parts galvanised and or made of stainless steal. he claimed that the much higher price is not worth it and that the fresh water model will be fine in the salt at a much less price. any thoughts? .

jfbasser 01-17-2006 07:34 AM

Go with the saltwater model and get a free Boga Grip.

flyinsalt 01-19-2006 04:59 PM

I have the riptide on my boat with manual steer and have not had any problems. Bass Pro shops had a clearance on the riptides without the remote steering a while back, very good deal. Everything I have read advises against using the freshwater motor in salt. I think it goes back to getting what you pay for and I don't think I would use a trolling motor in salt that was designed for a Bass boat. :tsk_tsk:

rogerstg 01-28-2006 12:01 PM


Originally Posted by FredA
I've been on a couple of boats with the trim and troll tabs and they seem pretty nifty to me. But aren't there reliability issues with them?

I've relied on mine for two years without any operating problems. I did have an actuator break during a 1000 mile trailering trip. Lenco sent me a replacement and replacement prop that got dinged.

When I told them what happened, they simply said, "tell us what you need and we'll send it"
The did ask for a picture if possible, so that they could assess the fault. They did not need anything sent back to them, which was convenient for me.

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