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Thread: Biting the bullet and upgrading troller to spotlock capabilities.Advice wanted.

  1. #1
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    Default Biting the bullet and upgrading troller to spotlock capabilities.Advice wanted.

    Well have been on the fence for a while but finally decided to to go ahead and make the jump. Not my first experience with using a spotlock feature as on my last 16ft alum jet drive rig had installed a motor guide x5 36 volt unit as at the time they spot lock was supposed to be much more accurate than the Minn Kota motors at the time.. Worked pretty well but understand that the newer units are better.

    Going Minn Kota this go round as the current crop of trollers that Minn Kota is supposed to be the best most accurate. Studying the models I quickly ruled out the powerdrive series as no heading sensor included and remote operation only and not even an option to use a corded foot control. Liked the pricing structure of the powerdrives but to many drawback to me to save a few hundred dollars on a major purchase.

    So decided to go with the Terrova line as the spot lock features with the header sensor is the same as all the way to the top models. Also unit comes with both remote and corded foot control and I prefer a little redundancy and like the idea that the foot control is wired and does not require batteries.

    I also like the idea of the lift assist as I am getting old and actually the boat I am placing this troller own I have owned since the late 90's and has had a powerdrive motor on it all these years so I know what the deploy/stow is like without it.

    One of the hardest choices as this is just a 14ft mod v jon and I fish mainly smaller waters or rivers was between the 12 or 24 volt option.

    I did just totally redo the wiring and battery layout on this boat earlier this year and set the boat up with a total of 3 group 31 deep cell marine batteries and laid the batteries out as such adding a few short jumper cables allows the transition from 12 to 24 volts easily.

    The big thing is of course the 24 volts adds about 250 dollars to the price over the 12 volts but as I figured that getting about 44% more thrust (55 versus 80lbs) and that there is only a 6 amp difference in maximum amps pulled because of the higher voltage (50 versus 56 amps) that it was worth the extra dollars in cost to upgrade to the 24 volt.

    One place I did finally draw the line even though I am planning my next upgrade to be a Bird helix 9 or 10 SI Mega unit I just cannot bring myself to add even another few hundred dollars for the "link" system even though I like the concept of being able to follow a depth contour or navigate to a saved waypoint in the bird by pushing a button.

    This unit is already costing more than my 36 volt MG from a few years ago and adding the link will push the cost to over 2 grand!

    I am going to pull the trigger probably by days end will I regret not getting the link even at the added cost? Would love to hear from someone that has experience with and without it!

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    I am of the opinion, in for a penny in for a pound.
    If you like to pull bottom bouncers or crankbaits, it is definitely worth the extra dollars.
    The follow the contour is the big thing IMHO, it is a useful tool.


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    Buy once cry once is my philosophy on stuff for the boat.

    Donít get what you want the first time and youíll end up spending more to upgrade to what you originally wanted.


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  4. #4
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    Cray is offline Crappie.com Legend and Moderator of the Mechanics Forum * Crappie.com Supporter
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    My 55 pulls my 17.5 stick steer just fine. See no need for 24 unless your fishing on electric only waters. Or river fishing in strong current. There are a few times I wish I had the 24 but 85% of the time perfectly happy with the 55. If you went with 55 dollars saved would go towards price of link.
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    You may want to wait a few days before you purchase. Looks like Humminbird and Minn Kota are introducing a new model on 7/11. You could see if your interested or at times they discount the older model to clean out inventory.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cray View Post
    My 55 pulls my 17.5 stick steer just fine. See no need for 24 unless your fishing on electric only waters. Or river fishing in strong current. There are a few times I wish I had the 24 but 85% of the time perfectly happy with the 55. If you went with 55 dollars saved would go towards price of link.
    Actually, I did go back and look and if I stayed with the 55 12 volt and added the link it would then only be a 100 dollars more than the 24 volt without the link. That would be a price I consider reasonable for what it is going to cost in any configuration and really have it all

    I do actually fish sometimes more electric only lakes and use a 55 lb transom mount for long runs across the lake and the bow mount motor for shorter runs and fishing duty. One of the reasons I set the batteries up as I did was one battery runs the front troller, one battery runs the rear troller, the 3rd battery is bilge pump, fish finder and boat lights, (rarely need those anymore) and sort of a spare gas tank for the troller to get back to the ramp if needed.

    Both myself and my fishing partner are retired and fish weather acceptable and always on weekdays no weekends. light wind okay but if the wind starts howling usually will not go or stay out to awful long. Our average fishing days are usually only about 6 to 7 hours max.

    When we go on the river the troller is for fishing only as a 9.9 gas will then be on the transom for other runs. The current is generally lazy but there are some more rapid areas with boulders that are only a few feet deep that are good smalley spots but at normal pool the 12 would be okay even in most of those areas for a while anyway. I do not find myself going into those type of water areas very often any more.

    You guys are helping and giving me a lot of good insight, that staying with 12 and getting the link will probably put the biggest smile after I get the new bird upgrade in the future. Sort of starting to lean that way now. Will be pulling the trigger by tonight one way or the other.

    At my age and my health I sort of figure a purchase such as this sort of long term and maybe the only one I may make!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Roy View Post
    You may want to wait a few days before you purchase. Looks like Humminbird and Minn Kota are introducing a new model on 7/11. You could see if your interested or at times they discount the older model to clean out inventory.
    They are discounting the price a little now and free shipping why I was thinking about pulling the trigger by tonight. Free shipping is a big deal on a troller!

    Is there ever a best time to make a purchase? lol!

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    Call Brian at BBG marine, and check his price.
    You have to call and talk to him.


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    Likes EWS, tcounty LIKED above post

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redge View Post
    Call Brian at BBG marine, and check his price.
    You have to call and talk to him.
    Sent from my iPhone using Crappie.com Fishing mobile app

    I have heard good things concerning him and the company on several different fishing and boating forums. Have any of you guys dealt with him and seen his prices beat those from the Minn Kota factory outlet store by a decent amount?


  10. #10
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    Yes, call Brian, you can thank me later.
    Others will chime in I am
    Sure.
    Great thing about BBG is he is prompt, courteous, and does what he says he will do.
    By the way I have no affiliation with BBG. He has just done a great job for me every time.


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