Need help choosing a trolling motor for inflatable frameless pontoon.

brkncly

New Member
I’m getting ready to add a trolling motor to my Dave Scadden Detonator Lo Pro X. Trying to decide on the Minn-Kota Endura 30 (30lb thrust x 30” shaft) or the Minn-Kota Endura 40 (40lb thrust x 36” shaft). I plan on fishing medium-large lakes. Leaning towards the Minn-Kota Endura for more thrusting power but afraid that it’ll run the battery down faster. Please help me choose wisely, give reason for why one over the other. Thanks you guys, great group!
 

dustinchromers

Active Member
Whatever you do go with a non indexed throttle. No detents. I personally like the endura 55 thrust as it's not that much more than the others and the big jump in price is above that. And if you upgrade on a boat then it will work. I've pushed everything from a pontoon to a sled with it. It's the long shaft which allows me to stand and operate in low transom boats while in tall ones still functional.
 

NW_flyfisher

if it's not this, then what?
I’m getting ready to add a trolling motor to my Dave Scadden Detonator Lo Pro X. Trying to decide on the Minn-Kota Endura 30 (30lb thrust x 30” shaft) or the Minn-Kota Endura 40 (40lb thrust x 36” shaft). I plan on fishing medium-large lakes. Leaning towards the Minn-Kota Endura for more thrusting power but afraid that it’ll run the battery down faster. Please help me choose wisely, give reason for why one over the other. Thanks you guys, great group!
I have the Minn Kota 30lb 30” shaft on my Dave Skadden Renegade and it’s perfect. I had the Minn Kota 40 lb thrust 36” shaft and the power wasn’t much different, It was also a heavier motor.
 

cdnred

Active Member
You need to be looking into the type of battery you plan to be using also. In Canada here they sell these 12V/20AH rechargeable batteries that are quite small, I'm sure they must be available to buy in the US as well. They're selling these for $39.95 CDN for each battery and that's cheap. You'd be better off buying 2 of these and then alternate them as one runs down. Depending on your draw and how much you'll be running the motor, one should be enough for the day but have the other along as a backup. Size wise they're quite small and could easily fit side by side in a appropriately sized dry box. Dimensions: 6.8" x 7.1" x 3" and weigh only 14.2 lbs. I'm sure that on your Scadden Detonator you will be limited on available space for parking these batteries..

 

Buzzy

Active Member
What is a non-indexed throttle?
Use the search function and you'll find a lot of discussion on trolling motors, batteries and PWM's. Apparently many (most?) electric trolling motors utilize the same current draw at lower speeds as full throttle (I can't explain why) so smart folks have figured out they can build their own pulse wave modulators which dramatically extends battery life at "trolling" speeds. Here's one thread: https://www.washingtonflyfishing.com/forum/index.php?threads/148215/

Have fun setting your boat up. Welcome to the forum.
 

Shad

Active Member
My oars are my trolling motor on my pontoon. I like how they let me vary speed and direction and the fact they don't add a bunch of weight. I don't like that they pretty much require me to troll backwards, which means I have to look over my shoulder a lot to make sure I'm clear of other boats and such....

My main gripe with trolling motors is the weight they add. Between the motor and the battery, you're talking at least 80 pounds. (This is a good reason to go with the 30-lb. thrust vs. a bigger motor, which I agree with the earlier poster doesn't add much power for the extra weight.) That makes everything about the fishing day harder, from loading up to setting up to launching to.... Those Canadian batteries mentioned earlier sound like a great solution to the problem of the big, heavy battery, and it would cut the total weight about in half, which almost makes me want to start using a trolling motor... almost.
 

Matt B

...
WFF Premium
I also agree with the notion that 55-lb thrust doesn't add much power over the 30-lb, especially for the extra weight. I have both (they came with the boat) and have run them on my 12-foot aluminum riveted Smokercraft. They seem to move the boat about the same, but the 55-lb draws the battery down a fair bit more quickly. I can't remember the last time I grabbed the 55 over the 30.
 

Buzzy

Active Member
My oars are my trolling motor on my pontoon. I like how they let me vary speed and direction and the fact they don't add a bunch of weight. I don't like that they pretty much require me to troll backwards, which means I have to look over my shoulder a lot to make sure I'm clear of other boats and such....

My main gripe with trolling motors is the weight they add. Between the motor and the battery, you're talking at least 80 pounds. (This is a good reason to go with the 30-lb. thrust vs. a bigger motor, which I agree with the earlier poster doesn't add much power for the extra weight.) That makes everything about the fishing day harder, from loading up to setting up to launching to.... Those Canadian batteries mentioned earlier sound like a great solution to the problem of the big, heavy battery, and it would cut the total weight about in half, which almost makes me want to start using a trolling motor... almost.
Like you, it seems that all that added weight and time to set up are a drawback - I mean it's bad enough when I float my pram: I have two anchors, two anchor bins, two oars, two oar holders, three or four fly rods (I take the fly rods out in their carrying cases), sonar unit (Fishin' Buddy), long handled net, a lunch box, a dry bag, a tote for flyboxes and spare reels, a thermous (what am I forgetting?). My pram is 8-feet long and with all this necessary gear, it's crowded and it takes a fair amount of time to load it all.

One time I decided to add a battery (12V, deep cycle) and trolling motor to the pram for a lake where you have to "row" about a half mile up a channel. I didn't have leads long enough to get the battery in the bow so the boat was loaded far too heavy in the stern resulting with the bow sticking up in the air. Maybe - just maybe - if I'd had the battery in the bow I might have found a benefit for the motor. With 7'-6" oars the pram moves along quite nicely, trolling isn't particularly efficient on the sticks, perhaps a trolling motor (with PWM) might well be a benefit.
 

IveofIone

WFF Premium
The Scadden page says that your boat weighs 26# and has a 1,000# capacity. The Minn Kota page says that the 30# thrust is good for boats up to 1,500 pounds and 14 feet in length. I doubt that you will ever get your boat to even 500# of load so the 55# Minn Kota is just overkill with shorter battery life.

As far as weight is concerned, the 30# thrust Minn Kota only weighs 15 pounds and coupled with a 35 amp hour AGM battery of 23 pounds the total weight added to the boat is less than 50#. I have used this exact setup for years on both a pram and a pontoon boat and never ran a battery dry. I never trolled with the motor because even the lowest speed was way too fast so battery life was never an issue. Use the motor to get from Point A to Point B then use fins or oars to troll. And run the motor at full speed to get there, it uses about the same power as low speed but is much faster. I know-it is counter intuitive-just do it.

The thread that Buzzy suggested explains the benefits of adding a PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) controller to the standard motor and getting vastly more battery life.This adds more than just battery life as it allows the motor to run at infinite speeds rather than just 5 speeds on detents. Meaning that you can actually troll with it as the motor can run much slower than the factory set speeds. Another benefit, and perhaps the biggest one, is that the motor is now controlled from a knob and switch at your fingertips rather than twisting backwards to control speed and direction. You set the motor in the straight ahead position and steer with either the oars or your fins. Forward or reverse is simply the flip of a switch and speed is controlled by a rotary knob, no acrobatics required. An added benefit is that most of these units come with a digital readout that tells you at a glance the amount of voltage left in the battery. For under about $30 this is a tremendous enhancement to the trolling motor, one that should be incorporated at the factory. Another company resting on their laurels while technology leaves them behind.:mad::rolleyes:

Edit: It is also possible to turn the head of the trolling motor 180 degrees if it works better for you in that position.
 

Shad

Active Member
The last two posts reminded me of the one time I really wish I had a motor, which is when the wind kicks up and you've got a long row back to the launch. That happens a lot, so....
 

Old Man

A very Old Man
I had a 14' Zodiac with the 30lb thrust It push that boat all over the lakes that I fished in Washington.
 

up2nogood

Active Member
Doesn't click into 1 of 5 spots on your throttle. It has the ability to dial very finely
Yes, I have had the the 5 speed 30 Minn-Kota, never cared for the click speeds 1 was too slow ,the 2 was too fast etc etc . Went with a 40 Motorguide non indexed throttle. If all you want to do is get from point A-B then the 30 Minn-Kota is fine , but if you want to fine tune your speed for trolling ,then no. I have had a 40 on three different pontoon boats ,and has worked well.
 
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