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I finally got my old trolling motor working, only to discover I really need something different. It's a '96ish Johnson model that came with my 19' Four Winns Fish-n-ski. It has a switch on the foot pedal to run 12V or 24V. I'm guessing it's around a 50lb thrust, but can't find any markings on it. Works fine, but the cable is short and barely reaches the floor in the bow. I mainly want to use it for walleye trolling, so I really need to be in the back of the boat.

I'm looking at the Minn Kota 55lb Powerdrive which is electonically controlled (not mechanically with a cable) and has an 18' control cable, or the MotorGuide Wireless 55lb trolling motor. Any thoughts on either one?

Minn Kota is $540 at BassPro; Motorguide is $610 at BP but includes the quick disconnect mounting plate.

Thanks,
Casey
 

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I'm a Minn Kota guy. I love my Terrova and bought it solely for the sake of it having a wireless remote so I can fish from anywhere in the boat. Both are good motors, but like I say, I like MK and I think they're a bit ahead of MG as far as design and aesthetics.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
QUOTE(esoxfly @ Jul 25 2009, 08:15 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I'm a Minn Kota guy. I love my Terrova and bought it solely for the sake of it having a wireless remote so I can fish from anywhere in the boat. Both are good motors, but like I say, I like MK and I think they're a bit ahead of MG as far as design and aesthetics.

Thanks, what made you go with the Terrova over the Powerdrive? I've heard a lot of complaints about putting the Powerdrive up and down while on the water.
 

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Went with the Terrova because the PD2 isn't available in 80 lb and I like the lock and deployment on the Terrova better. And it's not written, but the Terrrova is just a heavier-duty motor than the PD. I almost went with the 101, but seeing as LSC is LSC and I'm not on a lot of structure and drift alot, the 80 moves my boat just fine. If I was fishing Leech or MN, I'd have gotten the 101.
 

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You might wanna check the prices at KD Outdoors also....248-666-7799
We are also an Authorized MinnKota Service Center and give repair preferences to those who purchase motors from us.

Ask for me......Ken
 

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I've looked at the Terrova a bit, agree with Esox that the deploy/stow is much better. Not sure it's worth the extra $200 though. Anyone have 1st hand experience with the Motorguide Wireless?

I'm also a little concerned that 55lb/12V may not be enough; welcome any input here too. Thanks.
 

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55 would be on the low end for sure IMO. Trolling in the river with your boat I'd do the 70, but the 55 would move your boat. I guess I'd make the same recommendation for a TM as I would a big motor- get the biggest you can afford.
 

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In your case for a trolling motor, more is better. Get the most powerful motor you can with the longest shaft as well. A 12 volt system on your boat would be grossly under powered and you would be disappointed. Go with nothing less than a 24 volt system and even consider a 36 volt if you have room for the batteries. When purchasing your batteries, get them from Batteryman, (Rob) at Complete Battery Source. He`ll take care of you. Go to KD Outdoors and have a chat with Ken(Ninja) he`ll give you some great advice and set ya up with a great deal too.
 

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Here are my thoughts:

You mentioned that the primary use would be trolling for walleye. I would suggest that the 55 lb thrust motor would be more than enough. Walleye trolling is usually done at .7 to 1.5 mph and IMO the 55 will easily do that. Also, the 55, having a significantly lower current draw from the battery will allow you to troll longer without exhausting the battery as rapidly. There seems to be this movement to outfit with the largest motor available but that increased power comes at a cost. You have to perform trade off study to find the motor that will work best for you and your style of fishing. Also, the 55, IMO will be more than enough for vertical jigging.

Also, some folks mentioned the co-pilot. something think about is that the co-pilot has 10 pre-set speed settings whereas the regular model has what is essentially an infinite amount of speed settings. I found that it can be very important whilst trolling the SCR to have the ability to make very fine adjustments.

As for the ease of deployment on the power drive. A couple of folks that I know that have the PD have complained about the difficulty in deploying. My PD is a '94 model and uses a different deployment system so I have not had a ton of experience in this department with the newer models. I have not used a Terra Nova.

Only know one person that had a Motorguide (came new on their boat when they purchased it from the dealer) and after a couple of uses that removed it and replaced it with a Power Drive because they did not care for how it operated.

The lst thing that I can think of is the location of batteries. Since the batteries on you model of boat are in the stern and your intent is to bow mount there will be a significant cost in the wire required to run to the batteries since the motors come with about only 6 feet ow wire attached. The larger motors will requires much larger gauge cable which can increase cost significantly.
 

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From experience with the 101 terrova with both auto & co pilots it is nice. I mainly use the co pilot for directional control from anywhere on the boat. The auto pilot is great because you point the motor in a particular direction and dont have to mess with it much. Now I spend more time fishing rather than adjusting my course.

Extra power does have it's advantages. If you need to move or get out the way quickly you can. If you run into a situation where you have both strong current and winds you have enough reserve to handle it. As jay said though it's a trade off.

As far as power usage on my 36v system I get 2 full days of pulling the boat around before I think about charging it. I'm not sure if that's good or bad but that's the way it seems to work on my boat.
 

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QUOTE(doubledown @ Jul 26 2009, 12:23 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I've looked at the Terrova a bit, agree with Esox that the deploy/stow is much better. Not sure it's worth the extra $200 though. Anyone have 1st hand experience with the Motorguide Wireless?

I'm also a little concerned that 55lb/12V may not be enough; welcome any input here too. Thanks.

Doubledown,
Thanks for starting this post I am also looking to replace my trolling motor. I currently have a Motorguide wireless model 370RF 12 volt with 47lbs of thrust on my 19ft sylvan (it came with the boat when I purchased it). I can say from experience that the model I have is underpowered for this size of boat. I don't know how old this model is my guess would be at least 5 years so I am sure they have made upgrades. With that being said I have had problems with the response from the wireless controls the response time is sometimes delayed. If you are dealing with any type of current like jigging for walleye in the SCR or the DR the 12 volt system has a very short battery life before needing to be recharged. I am looking at the Minn Kota models. I really don't have the room for the batteries of a 36 volt system so I am looking at the Terrova 80lb 24volt system with copilot. I have heard that the Autopilot option does not work well in windy conditions can anyone veryify that?
 

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In the last year I have owned a 2008 power drive 55lb, 48" shaft, and a terrova 55lb, 54" shaft. I ran them on a 16 foot aluminum center console boat and use them primarily for walleye trolling.

Power Drive v2:
Great motor no problems with it. On a choppy day the shaft was to short and I had to have a guy sitting up front to keep the prop from popping out of the water. They are a bitch to deploy unless you coat the shaft with wd-40 before going out then they are no problem. Never felt a need for co pilot or wireless since the cable is 18 feet long and could be placed anywhere in the boat.

Terrova:
To much money IMHO but a superior motor to the pwer drive. The steering is much smoother and smaller adjustments can be made easier. The deploy assist system makes dropping the motor as easy as can be. I bought the Terrova simply so I could have the aut pilot option. Although I bought the wrong one and mounted it before realizing I bought the terrova without autopilot.
You can add it on for a couple hundred which I will be doing soon so no fedback on autpilot yet.

For your boat:
Either motor will work for ya. If mounting in the front you definitely need the 54" shaft or better on a boat that size. 55lbs will work for the most part but I have noticed that when trolling for ho's in the early spring on the SCR into a stiff south wind I am maxing the power out to maintain speed. This is on a 16 foot aluminum so my guess is it won't be enough power in those conditions for your boat. That being said thtose are usually miserable days to fish and you are better off sleeping in anyhow. Unless you ever want the autpilot option the power drive will make you happy. But when you are setting lines or reeling one in with a cross wind on the river trying to hold a specific depth etc. I can guarantee you will start thinking about auto pilot.
 

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sylvan

Once you get the hang of the auto pilot it's fine in the wind. With a cross wind I use it to dog walk across my chosen course all the time. (I have a 21 foot center with taller sides so it catches a fair amount of wind) The only time I have run into problems is when you have a good chop, winds and boat wakes. Then things get kinda difficult to control. If you find yourself drifting off course all you typically need to do is change course slightly or up the speed a bit to counter the wind and/or wave action.
When the AP is off is when I run into problems.

Then longer the shaft the better. I have a 54" and when it gets rough the prop comes out of the water occasionally.
 

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All good info here, haven't made my decision yet but I am going to go see Ken at KD Outdoors.

Sylvan, that's a good data point with the 47lb on your 19 footer. I only ran mine on 12V for a few secs, and figured since I had 24V available I might as well run that so I didn't get a good feel for what my boat could do on 12V. Do you know how fast you could go on the highest setting? (assume a decent day on LSC...minimal waves and chop).
 

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QUOTE(Scubajay @ Jul 26 2009, 07:41 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>There seems to be this movement to outfit with the largest motor available but that increased power comes at a cost. You have to perform trade off study to find the motor that will work best for you and your style of fishing.

I'd not call it a movement; I think it's a pretty standard school of thought. Yes, 24v/80 lbs of thrust does take more battery to run it, but you're not always at "10" on the speed. Most often I'm at 5 or 6 and the battery draw is relatively low, and the actual current is less than a 12v/55lb maxxed out. And current is what drains a battery. You'll get more time on the water from a 24v system running at 60% than from a 12v system running at 100% I could've gotten a PD at 55 or 70 lbs and it would move my boat well enough to move it here and there, but it'd be maxxed everytime I turned it on. My system now is barely stretching it's legs to turn the boat and if I need to move out of the way for a cruiser or something, it'll move my boat nearly 3 mph. It's nice to know it's there. Which is why it's recommended to buy at much motor as one can afford. If a guy can only afford 55lbs, it'll work. But he'd be better off with a 70 or 80 if he can afford it to fight the wind when the wind comes and it will.
 

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QUOTE(esoxfly @ Jul 26 2009, 01:31 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I'd not call it a movement; I think it's a pretty standard school of thought.

I used the word movement because I have been using an electric trolling motor for about 25 years starting out with a small Mercury electric that I bought in the early 80s. Back then we never used large electric motors because they did not exist. I agree that it is the current school of thought to use the largest motor availalbe but I was making the point that just because it is the current popular decision that one must examine the type of fishing that they intend to use to motor for and decide based on the requirements as opposed to just buying the largest motor one can afford. Things like: the cost of the motor, the cost of batteries, the cost of running large gauge power cables, is there room for 3 batteries in his boat (1 for starting and 2 for the 24v electric motor), weight of the batteries as applied to weight limits of the boat, mounting area and stress that additional thrust imparts, frequency of use, type of use, etc. These are just a few things off the top of my head. So I guess what I am saying is that a large 24v system may be the proper system but before making the purchase that you must examine all the requirements and make your trade based on intelligent consideration.

BTW, although I have a smaller boat, my Minn Kota is a 1994 model 36lb thrust and not one time while trolling for walleye (90% of what the motor is used for) have I ever wished that I had additional power. I use a GEL battery and running at around half power (typical). I have been able to use my motor for 5-6 trips consisting of about 6-7 hours without recharging.

So final thought, not disagreeing or agreeing with anybody, just mentioning that arbitrarily saying get the largest you can may not be the right decision.
 

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And Scuba, you're absolutely correct. I agree entirely. I was just commenting to the effect that it's not a fad or a few of us who like the big motors or recommend as much motor as a guy can afford. You're entirely correct in that there's more to "affording" a motor than just the motor itself. When I wired my Power Pole, I think I spent like $120 in wiring alone! And that was before I wired the radio and rewired the console Lowrance, so you're absolutely correct in what you way. I just wanted to make sure DD wasn't swayed away from a larger motor, thinking that larger motors were fads.

And I see in your profile (whoever's idea it was to show our boats was a great idea) that you've got a 16' Mr. Pike. ONE OF MY FAVORITE BOATS!!!! My Dad had one before the Merc on it blew. And as a testament to Merc that dang motor ran for more than 20 years with no rebuild before it went. But I loved that boat. Caught my first pike on a fly from that boat. Caught my biggest pike on a fly from that boat. And he had a 55 PD on it, and I'd agree with you I think a 36lb motor is plenty. There were times when I'd hit his TM on a high setting and it'd dang near throw me out of the boat. That's a great little light weight boat and 36 is plenty for that hull.

I think Dad's was an '80 or '82 model, but here you can see the bow-

The only thing that boat could've used was a raised bow casting platform.
 

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