Help with trolling motor for drifting in the MO

Discussion in 'MISSOURI RIVERS TALK' started by kfin, Jul 7, 2017.

  1. kfin

    kfin Member

    Messages:
    76
    State:
    MO
    Name:
    Keith
    I am trying to plan and figure out what I need to save up for a trolling motor for my new old boat to be able to effectively drift fish in the MO river current. I currently have a 45 lb thrust bowmount, or a 55 lb thrust transom mount. Neither of these is going to do the job I don't think. My boat is a 1648 Lowe River Jon with a 30 hp Tohatsu tiller. My calculations of weight of motor, boat, gas, battery, gear and 2 people is about 1250 lbs. I am leaning heavily toward the Minnkota Terrova. It looks like it comes in 80 and 112 lb thrust. I don't want to be undergunned for the river, but don't want to waste a bunch of cash either. Would this size boat need the 112? Or would the 80 work in the Missouri?

    There are a huge array of choices on options. I am just beginning my search as it will take a while to save up for it. I have a Helix 10 G2 so will probably be interested in the auto pilot or something like that also.

    What do I need to get? What options are worth the money. Heck, by the time I'm done I will have as much in the trolling motor and Helix as I do the boat and motor. I love the boat though, it is the perfect size for 2 of us to go out in and still small enough to put into any small river around here.

    Thanks for any advice, enlightenment, and experience.
    Keith
     
  2. wadekaminski

    wadekaminski Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,581
    State:
    MO - Missouri
    Name:
    Wade
    I ran a Minnkota Powerdrive V2 70lb thrust on my 16' bass tracker with no problems. The 24volt 80lb Terrova with ipilot (not link) will work well for you. Remember you are only trying to cut the speed in half or so when drifting.

    With 2 good group 31 batteries you should be able to drift for 6-8 hours (maybe more if you aren't running too hard). Get you a good onboard battery charger that will charge at minimum 10amps per bank. With that you can recharge over night and go back out the next morning if you choose so. Nothing worse than sitting at the house waiting on batteries to get topped off.
     

  3. BBK

    BBK Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    816
    State:
    Iowa
    Name:
    Kevin
    70pd or 80terrova. I have the 70 with ipilot on a 17' deep v 85" beam and can hold on spotlock in a 2.5mph current.
     
    vortex and jdstraka like this.
  4. vortex

    vortex Twirlygig

    Messages:
    3,020
    State:
    Missouri
    Name:
    Luke
    You could also add a drift sock if you need it.
     
  5. Kornbread69

    Kornbread69 Active Member

    Messages:
    191
    State:
    Dexter, Missouri
    Name:
    Kenny
    Not to hijack your thread kfin, but I've been wondering along the same lines, except, it's not only going to be a little more $ to buy the larger TM, it's going to be even more $ to buy another battery, and finding a place to mount that third battery, and wiring, in my, Lowe 180w, is going to be a real PITA. If an 80lb, 24v would last at least 6 hours, and hold, or at least slow the boat enough to fish in strong current, that's my ticket.

    But, I'm not so sure an 80lb is going to do the job, I'm thinking a lot of the river down here may be quite a bit quicker than 2.5mph as I tend to see about a 4+mph difference when running upstream vs downstream in the main channel. One of the 'sweet spots' I like to fish is definitely way faster than that and extremely hard to set an anchor in. But I'm also pretty sure having +100lb thrust isn't going to hold their either.
     
  6. vortex

    vortex Twirlygig

    Messages:
    3,020
    State:
    Missouri
    Name:
    Luke
    What about a little 1 or 2 horse kicker motor?

    By the time you get a new trolling setup, the cost would be similar.
     
  7. kfin

    kfin Member

    Messages:
    76
    State:
    MO
    Name:
    Keith
    But this would not slow me down, would it? I thought this would just keep you kind of straight from the wind pushing you around. Enlighten me...

    I briefly thought of this as I have a little 3.3 hp Mercury that I use with my canoe. Didn't want to jack with that all the time to keep the boat straight. Wanted to just fish. :) It is a possibility though for now, heck I may like it.

    I totally agree here....

    I think we are quicker than 2.5 also. If I just drift in the boat and look at the Helix speed, that is what I should assume is the current in a particular place? Correct? I understand that wind will also effect it, but basically that would be right? I'll check that this weekend if fairly accurate.
     
  8. kfin

    kfin Member

    Messages:
    76
    State:
    MO
    Name:
    Keith
    If you drive upstream at 20 mph and downstream at 24 mph....that would be a 2 mph current. Math correct? Slow you down 2 mph upstream and speed you up 2 mph downstream...excluding wind.
     
  9. wadekaminski

    wadekaminski Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,581
    State:
    MO - Missouri
    Name:
    Wade
    Guys, I fish both the Missouri and Mississippi rivers. I back bounce (bump if you like that term better) and dead stick. I did both of these in my 16' bass tracker and my seaark.

    No trolling motor out there will stop the boat in the main current when it's running 5-8mph. You don't need to do that anyway. You are just looking to slow the boat down. Yes a kicker or the big motor can do this too but who is going to control the boat while you're fishing?

    I don't care if you go minnkota or motorguide... but it has to have a remote and some kind of auto pilot (this is a minnkota term). If not you'll be spending all your time trying to control the boat and all you end up doing is getting snagged. I've been there... I've done that. I can't tell you how much time and money I wasted doing it.
     
  10. wadekaminski

    wadekaminski Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,581
    State:
    MO - Missouri
    Name:
    Wade
    No, this is incorrect... a drift sock will create more drag and try pulling you the speed of the current. That is the opposite of what you're trying to accomplish when drifting a river that has current.
     
  11. Marine4life

    Marine4life Active Member

    Messages:
    194
    State:
    Missouri
    Name:
    Mike
    I went thru a lot of these questions this winter. I was running a 70 pound edge (24volt) on a Lowe Stinger 195. Besides the foot pedal being difficult to manage while fishing, the 5 speeds did not give me enough flexibility to keep a current drift speed. You definitely want one of the TMs that give you auto pilot and the thrust range of 0-10. I would get 5 -6 hours with the edge and 2 group 27s. This will increase with 31s of course. I think you would have more than enough with 24v on a 1648 boat in current speeds of 4-5 mph typical of the Mo, at least near StL, you can slow down to 1.5-2 mph. I use the Helix speed and/or speed on the remote to keep track of drift speed.
    I did go up to the 112/36v and its great. Had to customize my battery box a bit but can fit all 4 batteries in there. I have room for 3 group 31 s and the crank but right now am only using 27s because I didn't want to buy 3 new batteries. I get 8-10 hours on mine depending on current speed and they completely recharge in 12 to 15 hours with 5 amp banks. The 112 moves my boat 3.3-3.5 mph on a lake depending on wind/waves. I initially had a 2 bank, 5 amp each charger. Instead of spending more $ on a 4 bank charger, I just added an identical 2 bank and now can include the crank battery as well. Hope this helps.
     
  12. kfin

    kfin Member

    Messages:
    76
    State:
    MO
    Name:
    Keith
    My biggest fear is buying the 80 and it not doing what I need it to do, then I'm screwed as I won't be able to get the 112 for years... lol My biggest fear of the 112 is battery space. It is a smaller boat and behind the seat where I sit there is room for the starting battery, and probably 2 trolling motor batteries. The gas tank sits on the other side. I'll have to do some measuring and see if a 3rd one would even fit.

    I really don't want to jack with trying to manually "steer" the boat while trying to relax fishing so I am leaning strongly toward the i-pilot (or whatever it is called with the brand I get).

    Would really rather do this once, spend the money and be able to relax and enjoy it.

    Never used anything other than a 12 volt trolling motor. Is it possible to have 2 batteries for a 36 volt one in the back and the third trolling motor battery up front somewhere? Not sure how they get wired up.
     
  13. wadekaminski

    wadekaminski Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,581
    State:
    MO - Missouri
    Name:
    Wade
    This was my 16' boat... 70lb minnkota with ipilot did great. Even with group 27 batteries I could back bounce all day. I assure you an 80lb Terrova would great on the majority of boats up to 1860.

    20150504_144555.jpg
     
    primitivefrn, Xpress18 and SHOWME like this.
  14. Kornbread69

    Kornbread69 Active Member

    Messages:
    191
    State:
    Dexter, Missouri
    Name:
    Kenny
    Wade, I know you like that remote, but don't you have a Hummingbird FF? Doesn't the HB and Terra connect in such a way you can plot a course in the FF and the trolling motor follows, and at the set speed?
     
  15. wadekaminski

    wadekaminski Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,581
    State:
    MO - Missouri
    Name:
    Wade
    You're talking about Ipilot Link... Yes, you can do a whole bunch of cool things with link... but! None of that works with the boat pointed up river while drifting down river. Link is more for lakes and to take full advantage of it you need both a humminbird fish finder AND a lakemaster card.

    The guys that I know that have the link only use the same functions on their remote that I use on mine.

    Set speed - one would think that dialing in a set speed would be great. Let me tell you that it isn't. The current changes so randomly on the river that 1mph in one section is too fast and 2mph in another can be too slow. I adjust my speed so that I'm just barely letting line out on each bump of the bottom. For example last Sunday and Monday my speed varied from 0.8mph to 2.2mph in less than 100 feet. If I were to have set my cruise control I would have been too busy reeling in and letting line out... when that happens your bait can fly right past a fish because instead of being on bottom you're up in the water column.
     
    south point likes this.
  16. Kornbread69

    Kornbread69 Active Member

    Messages:
    191
    State:
    Dexter, Missouri
    Name:
    Kenny
    Seriously??? That's why I've been set on getting an xi5 trolling motor, because my FF is a Lowrance and they're supposed to play together. But it won't follow a trail if it's going opposite the direction it's pointed? Have you heard the same with the xi5/Lowrance combo? Is they're a way/hack to defeat this? With just starting out backbouncing, I was wanting to let the TM/FF do as much of the work as possible while I try and get the bounce thing figured out. Trying to run a foot control and backbounce is bogus!
     
  17. wadekaminski

    wadekaminski Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,581
    State:
    MO - Missouri
    Name:
    Wade
    I was speaking of Ipilot Link. I don't have a motorguide. If you're going to be successful at back bouncing then you have to make course and speed corrections. I'd much rather do that on a remote over doing it on a fish finder. You'll still use auto pilot to set a heading but you'll have to make corrections.

    There is no "set it and forget it's when it comes to this. This is not a lazy mans way of fishing. It takes effort but once you get used to it the pay off is well worth it.
     
    SkipRat and south point like this.
  18. vortex

    vortex Twirlygig

    Messages:
    3,020
    State:
    Missouri
    Name:
    Luke
    Maybe we're not talking about the same thing, or using it the same.
     
  19. BBK

    BBK Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    816
    State:
    Iowa
    Name:
    Kevin
    You cant do it with minnkota because it will keep turning the boat to get on track, and will always point the direction it is traveling. So you cant drift downriver and point the bow upriver and be on assisted steering functions. You would have to keep it on power and manually steer left/right. I am not sure if xi5 is different, but i cant see it being so.
     
  20. wadekaminski

    wadekaminski Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,581
    State:
    MO - Missouri
    Name:
    Wade
    Drift socks work by adding drag... this is great on a lake but not when you're on the river... By river I'm speaking of one that has heavy current like the Missouri or Mississippi. Drifting on these types of rivers you point the nose into the current and drift down backwards. You use the trolling motor to not only slow the boat down but to control your drift line. If you were to throw a drift sock out while doing this it would create drag and make you boat speed up to whatever the current speed is.
     
    bearcat and SHOWME like this.