Converting foot-controlled trolling motor

Discussion in 'Boat Modification Journal' started by D-MO, Jul 22, 2007.

  1. D-MO

    D-MO New Member

    Messages:
    16
    State:
    Southeast Missouri
    I've got a foot controlled trolling motor on the front of my jon boat but don't really like it considering the lack of room in the front of the boat and other things. Does anyone know of any way to convert a trolling motor from foot controlled to hand controlled? I'd appreciate some tips. THanks
     
  2. wannafish

    wannafish New Member

    Messages:
    75
    State:
    Tennessee
    I want to do the same thing , I don't want the normal hand controlled as I want to use my mount so it still lays flat on the deck when not in use...if you find a way please let me know Thanks
     

  3. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    Just a thought. Ebay or Craiglist that sucker and use the proceeds to get what you want.
    Hand controlled trolling motors are cheap compared to foot controlled.
     
  4. D-MO

    D-MO New Member

    Messages:
    16
    State:
    Southeast Missouri
    That's exactly what I'm looking to do wannafish. If I come up with anything I'll let you know. Haven't really put a whole lot of thought into it, just decided to try it today.
     
  5. bigblaze

    bigblaze New Member

    Messages:
    738
    State:
    NC
    i called motor guide about converting my foot controlled fw-57...they gave me a number to a place that sales and services motors here in NC....(fisherman's friend)

    the guy has been servicing trolling motors for 15 years....he said it's a waste of time....

    he said allot of people will tell you it's easy and try to rig something but he said it would cost about $400-$500 to redo it and warranty it...which is about what it costs to replace it...

    sorry...try to sell it..
     
  6. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    You can get a plain Jane 50 pound thrust MinnKota for about 250 bucks or less if you really shop it.
    One other thing. A 12 volt trolling motor of any size operates more efficient then a 24 or 36 volt.
     
  7. D-MO

    D-MO New Member

    Messages:
    16
    State:
    Southeast Missouri
    Thanks for the replies, I'll see what I can do!
     
  8. FATFLATTIE

    FATFLATTIE New Member

    Messages:
    2,170
    State:
    ILM, NC
    I'd recommend just getting a transom mount motor and then unscrew the head, turn it around, and rescrew it. Then you can get/fab a mount for the front and you've got a front mound hand controlled motory for very, very cheap. I'll see if I can't take some pictures and post them for ya.
     
  9. duxsrus

    duxsrus New Member

    Messages:
    1,014
    State:
    SW Ohio
    I didn't know that, Goes to show, you learn something new everyday. Thanks Mark
     
  10. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    I didnt know either until last week.
    I obtained a rare copy of a book about electrical propulsion in boats.
    The book isnt all that old , its just out of print and sells for around 70 bucks if you can find it. Written by a man in eastern NC.

    Primarily the book is about a North Carolinian who embarked on a mission to put a boat into the river behind his house and use electric propulsion to travel 100 miles to the Pamlico sound.
    Included in the book is plans for a boat and the plans and templates to "chop" an electric motor. Something we've always done in some form or fashion on one man boats around here.
    The particular boat he supplies plans for runs a standard MinnKota. The only part of the motor visible is the motor and prop where it comes through the bottom of the hull.

    The most efficient electric motor I learned from another electric propulsion book I ran across that was written by an electrical engineer.
    Take a 3 phase AC motor and rewind it for DC.
    Its time consuming but the efficiency gain is somewhere around 35-40%.
    Pretty much what you wind up creating from scratch is a DC variable drive. Commonly used to power big energy using motors in plants like chiller motors that can cost 8000 dollars just to start up during peak demand periods.
    So not only are you rewinding a motor you also have to build some electronics to control the motor.
    He uses electric power on boats somewhat larger and has built numerous test beds over the years for his propulsion systems.
    Anything from a sailboat to a Carolina Skiff.

    These two men take a battery or batteries and a boat and know how far down a river they can travel before they have to turn around and travel up current with the battery or batteries on hand. They are that knowledgeable of what they are doing. The calculations are mind boggling to me.

    I've been into some interesting reading lately on the subject of electric propulsion systems. Some of it way over my head, some of it too far out in left field for my needs, and some of it more weight then I care to add to my boat.
    My interest is designing an electric propulsion system for my pontoon boat and drift fishing.
    As stated before in my pontoon thread, this whole rebuild the pontoon boat from scratch project is going to be one huge test bed to try things that have been bouncing around in my head and things I've had on paper for years.
    My quest to build a machine that is absolutely good for nothing except catfishing with the key emphasis on the boats systems as far as design and installation with ease of servicing.

    In the end and final analysis I hope a lot of how to's and how I did's will be library fitting. If there is an end. Its a test bed. It may change often.
     
  11. ShilohRed

    ShilohRed New Member

    Messages:
    4,339
    State:
    West Tn
    Yes but my 24 volt will sure out last the 12 volt.
    Just like a drill a 12 volt battery will last longer then a 18 volt because of heat. But in a trolling motor. I have had both and still have both. And would never go back to a 12 volt on the big boats.
    Also what kind of Trolling motor do you have that your looking to swap over to a hand controle?
    Pete
     
  12. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    An example of a 12 volt trolling motor in relation to a 24 volt

    12v submersible static thrust of 24 pounds
    Amp draw = 36
    Electrical power consumed in watts = 0.57
    Thrust achieved = 0.40
    Watts used per pound of thrust = 18.0

    24v submersible static thrust of 22 pounds
    Amp draw = 22
    Electrical power consumed in watts = 0.70
    Thrust achieved = 0.37
    Watts used per pound of thrust = 24.0

    I even used a larger 12 volt motor in the comparison.

    Now compare that with an above water 12v electric motor of 28 pounds static thrust.
    Amp draw = 31
    Electrical power consumed in watts = 0.50
    Thrust achieved = 0.47
    Watts used per pound of thrust = 13.3

    The average weight of a deep cycle battery is 60 pounds.
    When you figure in the weight of the additional battery you widen the gap. You have added 60 more pounds to the boat which the outboard has to carry.
    You've altered the efficiency of the gas motor as well.
    Just food for thought in these trying times:smile2:

    3 must have books to enter the dungeon of electric propulsion and come out with some understanding are.

    Electric boats, The Handbook of Clean Quiet Boating by Douglas Little

    Electric Propulsion For Boats by Charles Mathys

    The Propeller Handbook: The Complete Reference For Choosing, Installing, and Understanding Boat propellers by David Gerr.

    Gerr is highly respected among boat building circles worldwide. He has several books in print.
    The other two guys are men that obviously immerse themselves into great detail. For lack of a better word I'll call them "eggheads" or brainiacs. They get something on their mind and refuse to quit, spending countless hours, years, and money in trial and era and building prototypes. So much so they write a book about their obsession.

    These type books are getting fewer and fewer. The advent of "blogging" is going to do away with the personal quest books.
     
  13. D-MO

    D-MO New Member

    Messages:
    16
    State:
    Southeast Missouri
    I believe it is an older MotorGuide...
     
  14. SkiMax

    SkiMax New Member

    Messages:
    2,012
    State:
    Rising Sun, IN

    great idea, this is what I do and it can save you alot of money. I think I have an extra one sitting around my dad's house that has been barely used. If I do i will sell it for pretty cheap to help a fellow brother out. I'll check next time i'm home. It's a MinnKota 40 lb thrust 12 volt if my memory serves me correctly.

    also, here is a transom mounted motor from BPS for 99.99. It's a new model they just came out with. It's a 30 lb thrust. the 40 is 149.99. Look into these and the MinnKota's, I run an Endura now, great motor, I love it!

    BPS http://www.basspro.com/webapp/wcs/s...1_89820_200002001_200000000_200002000_200-2-1

    MinnKota http://www.basspro.com/webapp/wcs/s...01_1192_200002001_200000000_200002000_200-2-1


    I'll get pictures of my custom made mount as soon as i can also. It was done for around 15 bucks and works great
     
  15. Goldenshinner

    Goldenshinner New Member


    very very very interesting quote, sorry i shortened it above. i am also very interested in purely ellectric boat design. very expensive as i understand minkota makes a purly electric outdrive they call an E-drive(i believe) it in the $1000-$2000 range for a average sized boat. they are currently used on lakes that ban regular gas motors. there are also very expensive European models that are not common on the US Markets. Mitsubishi Ellectric also produced the worlds first compleately Electro Magnetic propulsion boat that uses the earths natural magnetism to propell itself, no actual motors used. my intersts(when my financials alow) would be to build a light ellectric boat designed around a soundprroofed generator. who knows if i ever get the time or money. also needed is a larger garage as my 4boat garage is allready stuffed!
     
  16. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

    Messages:
    9,407
    State:
    Four Oaks, NC
    The book by Douglas Little you'll enjoy. Its enjoyable to read.
    He also supplies plans to a boat and the plans to cut down a standard trolling motor hiding it below deck and ounly exposing the motorhead below the boat with a protectice skeg.

    That book is out of print so its expensive. I've found them online from 45 to 75 dollars.