How to Put a Trolling Motor on a Kayak
Last Updated on July 31st, 2020
Beginner or wannabe paddlers often wonder if it is legal to attach a trolling motor on a kayak. I am glad to tell you that it is entirely legal to put a trolling motor on a kayak. However, you have to follow the general boat safety laws.
A 55-pound thrust trolling motor will push the kayak around 5 miles per hour, which is quite slow. A PVC pipe, a hacksaw, and a wooden board are all you need to make a DIY trolling motor mount.
Related Guide: Suitable Trolling Motor Sizes For Pontoon Boat
How to Put a Trolling Motor on a Kayak: Step-By-Step Instructions
When installing an additional component/part on a kayak, a PVC pile is one of the most essential utilities. Although, you will have cut the pipe in small portions, hence make sure the required hacksaw skills are already a part of your arsenal. You will also need two rubber stoppers, a wooden board, 12 V deep cycle marine battery, and connecting cables.
Follow the instructions given below to put a trolling motor on a kayak:
Almost all fishing kayaks are equipped with a rod holder in the front and rear portion of the vessel. To put a trolling motor on a kayak, you will need the rod holder located in the rear end.
Begin by cutting two pieces of PVC pipes, 10-inches long, and half an inch wide—drill holes at the two ends of the two pipes.
Insert the two short PVC pipes into the rear rod holders.
Take the wooden board and attach two U-shaped hook boards on its two ends. The diameter of the hook board should be the same as the PVC pipes.
Insert the two hook boards into the PVC pipes. Apply pressure from the top until the wooden board is fixed tightly to the PVC pipes.
Further, place the deep cycle marine battery in the storage unit (preferably the rear hatchet). Have the connecting cable ready.
This setup allows you to connect a trolling motor on the right side of the kayak. Unfortunately, it is not feasible to connect a motor right behind the stern of the kayak. To make it happen, you will need a professional to design and build a custom setup. Also, there are some safety concerns.
As you can see in the image above, a trolling motor is equipped with a long shaft with electrical housing on the top. Connect the top end of the pole to the wooden board with a U-shaped hook. Some trolling motor may also come with an in-built mechanism to help you connect the shaft to a pipe or a piece of wood.
Attach the electrical plug of the trolling motor to the deep cycle battery. Place the foot control pedal (if applicable) on the cockpit floor. That’s it! You have successfully put a trolling motor on a kayak. Next, test it on land, then in shallow waters, and finally, head to the fishing hot spots.
Not all kayaks are equipped with an in-built trolling motor mount. However, most kayaks come with rod holders, which are enough to install a DIY trolling motor mount.
A 12 V deep cycle marine battery with 240 Ah capacity rating should be good enough for recreational fishing. Just make sure to turn off the trolling motor once the battery reaches the 50 percent mark. Not doing so would be detrimental to the life of the battery.