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Trolling motor questions

Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 8:07 am
by BillS
I want to use a small motor on my 10' Fold Up. Glen-L recommends 2hp or less but since many of my fishing spots outlaw gas motors I want to get a comparable trolling motor.

I know nothing about marine motors and am hoping some of you could give me advice. Lots of different brands out there and I don't know what is good and what isn't.

It has to be 15" short shaft. I am looking for something that is efficient and quiet but not crazy expensive. Battery suggestions are welcome also. Costco sells marine batteries and am leaning that way. In my experience Costco's products are usually pretty decent.


Re: Trolling motor questions

Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 8:57 am
by chugalug
:D Minnkota make good electric trolling motors in alot of different configurations(handles ,foot steer,remote steering) and in different thrust.check that costco store where batteries are or get Cabela's catalog or Bass Pro Shops.

Re: Trolling motor questions

Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 11:14 am
by hoodman
For that size boat you will be more than happy with a 30lbs thrust motor transom mount motor. I think the shortest shaft length is probably about 30" but that is from the prop all the way up to the hand controls and they are adjustable up and down so there really isn't a correlation with the shaft length like there is on outboards. The model below would probably be perfect: ... ling+motor

Also, you'll want something like this to hold your battery. It has a 50 amp breaker built in and 2 12 volt outlets. I have one in my jon boat and its really nice to have. ... attery+box

Re: Trolling motor questions

Posted: Tue Apr 05, 2016 4:55 am
by BillS
Thanks for the replies. Hoodman, the links are very helpful. $99 is a great price from what I have seen.

Re: Trolling motor questions

Posted: Tue Apr 05, 2016 7:38 am
by hoodman
The way trolling motors work you can only really ever go about 4-5 MPH. The differences in pounds of thrust is really for different sized boats. 30 lbs of thrust is more than enough to propel the fold-up, as light as it is. With a mid sized deep cycle battery you'll probably be able to run for hours. Now, all that being said, the step up from that would be the Minn Kota Endura Max. ... ndura-Max/ The reason why it is a step up is that it uses a different method to change the speeds that the motor runs at that is much more efficient. Also, you get variable speed control instead of the 5 forward and 3 reverse. If you really want max run time you might want to look at stepping up to one of those. I can tell you from fishing with the 5 set speeds on a Minn Kota that many times even the lowest setting is too fast for trolling. That's on a 16 foot jon with a 40lbs thrust bow mount. The variable speed lets you really just creep along.

Re: Trolling motor questions

Posted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 7:27 am
by BarnacleMike
Just three days ago, I bought a Minn Kota Endura C2 for $99 from Academy Sports. Along with it, I bought a $49 small Excide deep-cycle battery and a basic battery charger by Nautikal. My goal was to buy the cheapest rig I could to put on a rental jon boat at a state park where no gas motors are allowed. It'll also give me a 2nd motor option to use on my Utility.

The 30 lb thrust was sufficient to move me, a teenager, and a tween in a 14' aluminum jon boat around on the lake. In about 1-1/2 hours, the three of us depleted the small battery from a 95% charge to a 20% charge. I was quite pleased with the performance of the whole set-up. The Endura C2 has 5 forward speeds, and 3 reverse speeds. The "4" speed moved us along nicely on calm water.... slightly faster than we would've been able to row a jon boat, I believe.

The only downside I see to the Endura C2 is that there is no on-board indicator of remaining battery life. Minn Kota offers a digital battery meter for about $15-$20, and I'm considering buying one for the next time I use this motor. I admit, I know virtually nothing about trolling motors, and this is my first one. I have a question about the battery meter, which I'll post in this thread, as it seems applicable to the topic:

Info I've seen on the battery meter says not to use it when the battery is being charged, or is under load. My question is about the "under load." If the motor is connected to the battery, but the motor is turned OFF, does that still constitute "under load," or not? Ideally, I'd want to use the meter to determine battery depletion while out on the water.

Re: Trolling motor questions

Posted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 7:40 am
by Bill Edmundson

Like you that sounds like a gas gage that doesn't work when you drive?


Re: Trolling motor questions

Posted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 9:33 am
by BarnacleMike
Hi Bill,

Right. The Endura C2 doesn't have a built-in gauge to show battery depletion.

The Minn Kota handheld battery meter seems like it would provide a very simple and easy solution. I would just hate having to disconnect the battery from the motor every time I wanted to check battery status. That's why I was wondering about the definition of the battery being "under load."

If the battery is "under load" as soon as you connect it to the motor, that would make using the battery meter rather inconvenient.

Or, if the battery is only "under load" when the motor is turned on, (which makes the most sense to me), then using the battery meter as a gauge would be easy enough.

Re: Trolling motor questions

Posted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 11:23 am
by hoodman
There shouldn't be an load on the battery if the motor is turned off. Otherwise everyone's trolling motor batteries would go flat in the garage. If you get the battery box that I posted the link to above it does have a four segment LED charge indicator. I'm not sure how accurate it is. You could carry around a harbor freight multimeter to check the battery voltage. Minn Kota also recommends using a 50 amp breaker and that box has one built in as well as 2 12 volt outlets.

Re: Trolling motor questions

Posted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 12:29 pm
by BarnacleMike

Thank you. That answers my question, and is what I'd basically assumed. Electricity / wiring is not my "thing," so I wanted to ask. I doubt I'll get a box for this battery, as it and the motor will only be used occasionally for camping trips & on lakes that prohibit gas motors. I will probably get the little Minn Kota battery meter, though.

Aside from the lack of a battery gauge, I was very pleased with the little $99 Minn Kota. I believe it would move BillS's Fold Up around nicely, as it worked fine for me & both kids in a 14' jon boat.

Cabela's sells the Endura C2 and the battery meter together in a package for $120: ... t104645880

Seems like a pretty reasonable buy to me. If I had it to do over again, that's probably what I'd buy.

Re: Trolling motor questions

Posted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 12:31 pm
by galamb
There is no "math formula" that can convert pounds of thrust to horsepower because you have "thrust" while stationary and to measure "horsepower" you have to have motion at least in one direction.

However, if you measure the "thrust" produced by a 1 horsepower motor pushing a hull through the water you would get "roughly" 26 or 27 pounds of "thrust" - which is why you used to see 28lb thrust trolling motors (about 1 horse) and 56-58 lbs (2 horses) back when they first came out.

So today's 30lb motors are pretty much the equivalent of a 1 horse gas model.

Re: Trolling motor questions

Posted: Fri Apr 08, 2016 12:47 pm
by BillS
That's good info galamb! It is helpful to at least have a rough idea of a conversion between horsepower and thrust.

Re: Trolling motor questions

Posted: Mon Nov 19, 2018 1:37 am
by Uxanon
I know it's an old thread, but maybe it will be a timely resurrection for someone

I did a lot of 12v battery research after buying a travel trailer and found that, like a pet, a battery will lead a long and happy life if well taken care of. Overdischarging, leaving discharged for a long period of time, or overcharging can all play a roll in depleted battery life. However, not all batteries are created equal and some can take more abuse than others. I've been told that the sealed Optima batteries can handle a fuller discharge and still maintain their lifespan over the standard wet cell batteries. I ended up going with a group 27 costco marine/RV battery based on budget and use. I've been using two of these for about a year now between the electric trolling motor and the trailer without any problems. For the budget minded, a battery like this would work or even the Optima would be a good choice. If you're looking to go for a better battery ($$), look at Trojan or check out a Marine supply shop to see what they would suggest. However, if you're going to invest in a good battery, I'd suggest investing in an equally good charger too.
PS. I think I spent about $70/battery for the Costco grp27. With good care, I expect to get at least 5 years of use out of these and hopefully more.