Can You Put A Trolling Motor On A Kayak?
You can attach a trolling motor to your kayak, which is becoming more common. Some kayaks even have separate compartments solely for the battery that powers the trolling motor. Keep in mind that not all kayaks will enable you to do this, but the majority of them will. Check out this example of a fantastic fishing kayak.
It is typical and popular to install engines on kayaks, but it is important to emphasize safety first. Kayaks are not full-fledged boats. Therefore, they shouldn’t have anything bigger than a trolling motor on them, and they should always be used with a life jacket. Sheriffs and other law enforcement officers have the authority to stop anybody on the water and conduct a safety check.
Read more: Best Trolling Motors For Kayaks
How To Put A Trolling Motor On A Kayak??
Trolling motors are meant to be fitted on your kayak. Some trolling motors include mounts and all necessary gear for a complete installation. If you buy a trolling motor that comes ready to install out of the box, the best thing you can do is to follow the manufacturer’s instructions. A motor mount, battery, and mounting hardware are likely to be purchased separately from the motor.
Trolling motors are meant to be fitted on your kayak. Some trolling motors include mounts and all necessary gear for a complete installation. If you buy a trolling motor that comes ready to install out of the box, the best thing you can do is to follow the manufacturer’s instructions. A motor mount, battery, and mounting hardware are likely to be purchased separately.
Select a Kayak Motor Mount
You’ll need to select where you want to put your trolling motor before purchasing one. Kayak trolling motors are mounted on your kayak’s bow, stern, or gunwales. The benefit of installing your boat’s engine on the gunwale is that you’ll have better access to it while still sitting comfortably on your seat. Having a motor installed on the side of your kayak might cause navigational challenges.
If you want to place the engine on the bow or stern of one of the finest fishing kayaks, you’ll need a motor with remote control. Because the engine generates greater power on one side than the other, adjusting your motor may require some skill. The best way to choose the size and type of machine you need is to visit your local sporting goods store and test out different models on a display model.
You should also take into consideration where you need to mount it, as well as the weight limit of your kayak. You’ll need to select where you want to put your trolling motor before purchasing one. Kayak trolling motors are mounted on your kayak’s bow, stern, or gunwales.
Read more: Best Trolling Motor For Kayak
Select A Motor Mount That Is Compatible
You’ll need a proper motor mount to put a trolling motor on a kayak. The motor mount is the part of the trolling motor that connects to your kayak and keeps it in place. There are several different mounts on the market, but compatibility with your trolling motors and kayak is crucial when selecting a motor mount. If you’re looking for a motor mount for your kayak, be sure the clamps or bolts are suitable for your bow or stern design.
Specific sit-on-top kayaks allow you to pick between a bow/stern or a gunwale mount. These kayaks may provide you with a bit more versatility in mounting your engine. You’ll need a proper motor mount to put a trolling motor on a kayak. The motor mount is the part of the trolling motor that connects to your kayak and keeps it in place.
There are several different mounts on the market, but compatibility with your trolling motor and kayak is crucial when selecting a motor mount. If you’re looking for a motor mount for your kayak, be sure the clamps or bolts are suitable for your bow or stern design. Specific sit-on-top kayaks allow you to pick between a bow/stern or a gunwale mount.
Connect The Propeller To The Engine
Most trolling motors sold in the UK do not come with a propeller – this is mostly for safety and protects the propeller from damage during shipment. Installing an appropriate propeller to your trolling motor should be reasonably simple if it comes with one.
The best approach to ensure correct installation is to refer to the motor’s manufacturer’s instructions. Having a backup propeller on deck is usually a brilliant idea if you go aground in shallower water and damage your current propeller. However, not all motors come with a propeller, and others need you to locate and install an aftermarket propeller yourself.
Although it may not enable your engine to propel your kayak at higher speeds, it may boost the total power of your motor. Difference Between a Trolling Motor and an Outboard Motor A trolling motor is used to propel a boat or kayak in a forward motion using the propeller. An outboard motor is used to drive a boat or kayak using the engine’s power.
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Kayak motor installation
If your mount has clamps, you’ll need to attach those clamps to your kayak’s gunwales to keep it in place. You may be able to use clamps and a molded-in handle if you choose a mount that connects to the bow or stern of your boat. But it’s more likely that you’ll have to drill holes in your vessel to attach the mount.
Fasten your mount using bolt-and-nut combinations. Most trolling motor mounts enable you to rotate or pivot your motor to lift it in shallower water. When you set the engine down to start using it, it should be secured with a pin to keep it in place. You may need to lift the trolling motor while still on the water in certain circumstances, necessitating removing the engine pin.
If you’re kayaking in deep water, you may want to connect a floating buoy or attachment to the pin so you don’t lose it if you drop it. Attach a cord to the engine’s control switch, then run it to your cockpit. Attach the other end of the line to a toggle switch or lever on the motor, so you can start and stop once you reach deeper water.
The cord will also come in handy if the engine is on a pivot point, like a pole mount. Attach a line to the engine’s control switch, then run it to your cockpit. Attach the other end of the cord to a toggle switch or lever on the motor, so you can start and stop once you reach deeper water.
Read more: Best Kayak Trolling Motors
Construct steering links
Mounting your engine on the bow or stern of your kayak is the ideal way to go if you want hands-free operation for kayak fishing or other uses. However, it would help if you first constructed the necessary steering links. Those who pick a gunwale mounting position will be able to direct their motor with their hands and won’t have to bother about steering connections.
The steering linkages will only work with sit-inside kayaks that already have foot pedals that can be used with a skeg or rudder in the stern. Any kayak that isn’t already equipped for rudder or skeg navigation should include a gunwale mounting position. Some kayaks may replace the current skeg with a kayak trolling motor.
First, locate the points where the linkages enter your boat at the stern. Each end of these links should already have a fitting to connect it to the rudder on the rear of the kayak. After that, attach two metal eye bolts to the shaft at the height of the steering linkages after your motor is fitted.
Try adding a little extension cable to each linkage if your linkages aren’t long enough to keep some slack after they’re joined to the eye bolts going from your motor’s shaft. If they are excessively tight, the motor shaft will be restricted, reducing the overall efficacy of your motor. Setting up your kayak on a set of portable kayak supports is a terrific method to test the functioning of your trolling motor while on land.
Connect the trolling motor battery
Remove the cap (or ‘head’ on the top of the motor to expose the wiring and other electrical components inside. The internal wires will be colored differently depending on the motor you pick. Connect your motor to your deep-cycle marine battery so you can try it out before putting it out on the sea.
Black is standard ground, and red is commonly associated with a hot lead, but it’s important to note that both might vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. So, while working with electricity, don’t neglect any needed reading! If you’re looking for the best trolling motor battery for kayaking, we have a few tips to help you choose the suitable model.
Most marine batteries are coated with a waterproof coating, and any good marine battery will come with a cover to protect the terminals from water damage. Make sure the battery voltage matches the voltage of your motor. A good motor will provide an input voltage of 1,500 to 2,000 volts, and a battery with a 12-volt output is acceptable.
If your battery is rated at 24 volts, you’ll need to purchase a battery that has 24-volt output. Some batteries have composite cords with two separate components, one for the positive and negative leads. If you’re unsure about what to use, purchase a battery with different lines. Be sure that the battery is rated high enough to power your trolling motor. You should be able to find this information in the owner’s manual or online by contacting the manufacturer of your trolling motor.
Read more: Are Inflatable Kayaks Safe?
How to Choose a Trolling Motor for Kayaks
If you’re looking for the best trolling motor for kayak, you’ll need to decide whether or not you want to invest in one – and what kind of trolling motor to choose from. There are three types of trolling motors for kayaks: propeller, electric or outboard.
Propeller trolling motors are the most common type of motor for kayaks because they’re relatively easy to install and maintain. However, you will have to ensure that the propeller is balanced correctly and re-balanced periodically. Many kayak anglers prefer this type of motor because they can use it effectively in any water.
Electric trolling motors are more efficient due to their power source, but they usually require a battery and charger that may be beyond the scope of most kayakers’ budgets. Outboard motors are typically used by recreational boaters and work well on lakes with calm waters.
Size of the kayak and trolling motors
The thrust of a trolling motor is measured. The greater the trolling motor, the more confidence it will have. A kayak’s back compartment isn’t designed to handle a powerful trolling motor. Because a kayak isn’t very heavy, it doesn’t need a powerful engine. You’ll never need more than a modest 30-pound thrust for your kayak.
The size of your trolling motor, motor mount, and the marine battery will determine how much space you have for the remainder of your kayak fishing equipment package. A longer shaft will often produce a more significant push since it will reach deeper into the water, but it may not be the ideal choice for fishing in shallow seas.
The motor’s shaft size also affects its performance. The weight of your boat is a consideration. In general, heavier boats will require more powerful motors to function correctly. The load on your trolling motor is also determined by the type of motor you select and its size. A single-prop has more pull than a twin-prop design, but the twin engines will be less fatiguing on long fishing excursions.
Read more: Kayak Weight – How Much Does A Kayak Weigh?
The typical measurement for the amount of power a trolling motor can produce is thrust. Every two pounds of thrust in your kayak can move about 100 pounds of weight. This is significant since most kayaks designed for trolling motors can be very heavy. Larger trolling motors often have higher thrusts.
The combined weight of your kayak and your body is the minimal amount of weight your motor should be capable of transporting. An engine on the back of a 70-pound kayak carrying a 150-pound passenger, for example, must be able to propel at least 220 pounds.
Returning to our original estimate, a minimum of 4.4 pounds of force is required to move 220 pounds (220 x 0.02 = 4.3). We recommend adding at least 50 pounds (preferably 100) to the combined weight of your kayak and yourself. This makes it easier to account for a tackle box, kayak cooler, dry bags, and anything else you may bring.
Remember to factor in the additional weight of the trolling motor, mounting apparatus, and marine battery. The power required to run a trolling motor is thrust. Every two pounds of thrust in your kayak can move about 100 pounds of weight. This is significant since most kayaks designed for trolling motors can be very heavy. Larger trolling motors often have higher thrusts.
Trolling Motor Power
Batteries are assessed by their total energy storage capacity, commonly measured in milliamp-hours. When discharging an average current of 2 milliamps over some time, a battery capacity of 250 mAh will last around 125 hours. A 12-volt deep-cycle marine battery is often used to power trolling motors.
You’ll need a suitable battery to operate your trolling motor. You’ll need to strike a balance between a battery that’s big enough to meet your motor’s power requirements and one that’s not so hefty that it adds too much weight to your kayaking setup. This will determine how long your battery will last when out on the lake. A 12-volt deep-cycle marine battery is often used to power trolling motors.
Can A Fishing Kayak Trolling Motor Be Used?
A trolling motor is a different engine that propels the boat forward from the stern or the bow. An electric machine, propeller, and controls are included in a complete package. Its only purpose is to supplement the boat’s primary propulsion system. Because they were designed for huge ships, trolling motors used to be rather massive. Batteries usually power trolling motors for kayaks. An electric motor is another name for it.
So, if you want to install one in your kayak, you must first choose which trolling motor is appropriate for you. Each kind has benefits and drawbacks. Read our post on the top trolling motors on the market for more information. Powered by the battery, this is an excellent option for small boats. It is light and weighs less than an engine. This can be made in several different voltages to suit your needs.
You can also adjust how much power it generates with a dial with five settings: low, medium, high, turbo, and off. The motor also creates noise which can be bothersome to some. It might be noisier than other motors, but that’s a sacrifice you’ll have to make for the lightweight and size of this motor. It is also fully waterproof, perfect for fishing trips in creeks.
This high-quality trolling motor uses both propellers and an electric engine to power your boat forward. It is also water-resistant since it can be submerged for up to 100 feet. This motor is best for a more sporty kayak. The manufacturer touts that you can use these motors on various boats like bass boats, fishing boats, and other smaller kayaks. It’s easy to install because it has an easy-to-use control.
Read more: How Much Does A Kayak Cost? – Kayak Price
Will a Trolling Motor Mount Onto My Kayak?
Mounting a trolling motor is as simple as putting a two-by-four board on the back of your kayak and mounting the motor to it. However, you must ensure that the motor does not tear your propeller or kayak apart, or you will be stuck out on the lake with a sunk kayak or torn up propeller. With ease, a trolling motor can be attached to a kayak and just a couple of hours of effort.
Because trolling motors are not water-cooled, you can connect your batteries and turn the motor on to test it. Unless you are really experienced in making things watertight and have worked on boats previously, NEVER drill more holes in your kayak merely to make anything fit.
If you drill a hole to custom fit anything, ensure sure no water rushes in and sinks your boat with you inside. Trolling motor installation can be made easier using a kayak lift. If you do not already have one, they can be purchased relatively cheap at local marina supply stores. Turn the motor on to see if it will turn.
Is It Legal to Put a Motor Mount Kit on a Kayak?
Just because it is a kayak does not exempt you from boating regulations. Unless your vessel is more significant than 12-14 feet and has an outboard motor of 10 horsepower or more, you usually do not need to present evidence of ownership, such as DMV registration. This means you won’t have to pay registration fees or have a sticker on the side of your boat, which is excellent news for anglers.
There are many different ways to store kayaks, but it is usually recommended to keep them underwater. If you’re not a club member, consider placing them in your garage or basement. Make sure they are not on the floor or resting against walls or anything else in the space. It would help if you stored your kayaks on their side. That’s the simplest way to prevent them from becoming damaged, and it keeps the air inside of them for longer.