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Discussion Starter · #123 ·
So worth it. Took the boat on a test run today. All the fuss is worth it. I. The 20+ mile per hour wind, I could have never been on the water in the old boat. But the pontoon handles it fine if you don't mind the spray.

The old trolling motor is going to get me buy.

The Jack plate is awesome, was in less than 2 feet of water today.

Still think it needs a different prop, but have to get the Hydraulic pump moved before I can try full throttle. Limited to 2800 rpm and 10 mph.

Its coming together.
Fish Fishing Recreation Bass Salmon
 

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Discussion Starter · #125 ·
Back on the build. The seats are in, and had it to the lake last Friday. Focused on the prop issue. With the jackplate all the way down, my prop didn't catch air. GPS showed me 23 mph, at full throttle. A bit disappointed with that, but also throwing a roster tail from where the bottom of the jackplate is dragging outside the transom. I'm sure that's where my other 3-5 mph went. I'm also not confident in my tachometer. It was showing 6000, but the engine didn't sound like it was working that hard. I will have pictures, after the next trip.
Current questions to troubleshoo; 1. Can I extend the transom to the jackplate, 2. tachometer settings for this engine, and max engine rpm, 3. What cleaner will get the algae crust off the toons, 4. Why did the new sonar stop working, hoping it just slipped up and was not catching clean water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #126 ·
Ripped the Hook 2 tripleshot off the boat, and ran it out to a local dock to troubleshoot. The unit is working, but the transducer is extremely sensitive to being level. I dont think I could ever get it level on the back of the toon. Thinking about a trolling motor install or has anyone ever mounted a transducer on a pole that can be raised or lowered. Pull it up when running full out, but push it down when searching for bait, or mapping fishing spots? Let me know what you think.
 

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Discussion Starter · #127 ·
Things are finally coming together. Sonar is now mounted on the trolling motor with a custom mount I built myself. I added a hummingbird LCR to the back toon for contour identification at high speed. The prop is changed out to a 14 inch 11 pitch. 13.5 x 15 pitch is now for sale. The tachometer is working properly.

Engine has been serviced by an authorized Mercury mechanic. New impeller, lower unit oil, fuel line, carburetor gusts, and fuel diaphragm. Engine is no longer self oil injected; one less thing to break, I have poured in oil my whole life, and I can cut off the gas and empty the carburetors every time it goes on the trailer.

Learned that sulphuric acid is the recommended cleaner for the toons. Have no idea how to pull that off without destroying the trailer, and I can't take it off the trailer at home.????

Wind is blowing 40mph or I would be at the lake. Will have to get some pictures.

Still need to address the jackplate and work on light holders.

I'm like a kid at Christmas.
 

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Discussion Starter · #128 ·
Well, back to the drawing board. Had the boat out yesterday to test it out. The RPM guage is still not right. Fortunately, the new mechanic I found is going to work with me. 11 pitch never broke free, but topped out at 22. I'm very protective of the engine so, didn't go above 6000 on the tachometer, even though I'm fairly sure I was only at 4500 ish. Mechanic is ordering a 13 pitch to have me try. I was also very disappointed that the trolling motor would not track straight to use the sonar with the big motor. That's probably a deal breaker with the trolling motor mount. Motor was also causing some signal noise that I didn't care for either.

I will keep working on it. The only other question is where do the shad go after a cold front when the water temp is still pretty low?
 

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what lake you hunting shad on? milford was kinda hard to get em this weekend. as for tachs, my tach aint very accurate either, seems to work better at higher rpms than lower. what trolling motor you have?
 

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Discussion Starter · #131 ·
I'm fishing El Dorado. I have an old MotorGuide foot pedal controlled. My retirement present will be a new trolling motor system, but that's a few years off. Every time I start to get frustrated, I remember I used to have fun fishing with hook and line I found on the bank and a grasshopper for bait.

How deep are the shad?
 

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Discussion Starter · #135 ·
If it wasn't for bad luck, would have no luck at all. Had the boat out last Tuesday, and when I got to the lake, found that rats had chewed the power cable to the sonar in two. They got through the insulation and aluminum cover, but didn't get any of the internal wires. Not sure if it will send a signal.

On a good note, I successfully converted an old trolling motor mount into a manual power pole. Didn't sway hardly at all when I was anchored. But, not a single bite. Will keep learning.
 

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Discussion Starter · #136 ·
Progress; I have had the tachometer verified twice, will save the story on that, not enough room here. The tach is on. I found Barry's Westside Marine in Wichita, great place. He switched to an 11 pitch prop and sen a 13 and 15 with me to try. I had already ran the 11, got 23 mph and could over rev the engine, so switch to the 13. It performed almost identical to the 11, a bit more speed at lower rpm, but could still over rev. So put on the 15 pitch. It was like magic, at full throttle I hit 5200 rpm. Max for the engine is 5250. I was hoping for 26 mph, I got 25, but suprisingly I can run at 20 mph at 4200 rpm. My goal was to run between spots at 2/3 to 3/4 throttle at 20mph. I'm very happy where I am.

Now the mystery? The stainless 15 pitch prop is what was breaking free and causing me to search for props in the first place. The only difference is how the props attach. If a prop is wobbly, will that cause the problem? If a trust washer is off center will that cause it to be wobbly? I have to figure out why a 13.5 x 15 pitch stainless won't perform and a 13.5 x 15 aluminum is perfect. Being a catfish boat, going shallow, catching bait, fishing trees, I really want a stainless. Let me know if you can solve the mystery.
 

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I cannot say if this is your issue but I have read that the larger amount of flex in some aluminum props as compared to stainless is enough to create a noticeable difference in rpm such that it may be necessary to select a prop that is 1 pitch less when switching from aluminum to stainless.
I guess the actual difference (if any) would depend on the size of the motor and weight of the boat etc but maybe the aluminum 15 flexes just enough to create the sweet spot.

What makes you use the term “wobbly”, is there a vibration when running or an obvious visual issue when you rotate the prop by hand? If so, either of those can/will do damage to your lower unit so should be fixed.

…W
 

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A pontoon boat can be built using a pre-designed kit or from scratch if you have enough experience and time to spare for a DIY project. Use 8-feet long plywood pieces as support for your boat. You will lay them across the width of the deck, and attach them to 2×4 16-feet boards (which will serve as the length of the boat frame).
 

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A pontoon boat can be built using a pre-designed kit or from scratch if you have enough experience and time to spare for a DIY project. Use 8-feet long plywood pieces as support for your boat. You will lay them across the width of the deck, and attach them to 2×4 16-feet boards (which will serve as the length of the boat frame).
he already has a boat.
 
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