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Adding a trolling motor to your kayak can give you a little extra power over the water and can let you spend more time fishing and less time and effort paddling. But to mount a trolling motor you first need a trolling motor mount so that you can fix it to your kayak safely and securely.
We have put together this guide to help you learn a little more about the best ways to mount a motor to your kayak.
Just want to buy your motor mount and not bother making your own? Here’s a popular mount at Amazon.
Buying A Trolling Motor Mount Kit – How To Mount
Types Of Mounts
The type of trolling motor mount that you’ll need will usually depend on the type and power of the trolling motor you plan to use, as well as the type of boat that you have. You can either buy a motor mount kit or you can make your own.
Video: How To Make A Trolling Motor Mount For Your Kayak
You will also usually find that there are different types of mounts for inflatable kayaks, as you will probably be limited to wear you can mount a motor on an inflatable since you won’t be able to drill into its hull.
Many mounts for kayaks are transom mounts, which means the motor is mounted towards the rear of your yak. You’ll also find bow mounts that let you mount your trolling motor at the front of your yak. The location of your mount will often depend on the style of your boat or the availability of mounting space, as well as personal preference.
Buying a mount can be a safer option for some motors because they are made for that particular purpose and are usually rated to handle a motor with a specific power or thrust rating. So it can be a good idea to make sure the mount you choose is suitable for the power of your motor.
Not all mounts will be suitable for all boats. For example, a mount for an inflatable yak may not be compatible with a standard kayak because of the difference in how it’s attached to the vessel and the difference in the shape or size of the hull.
An important feature of a trolling motor mount is that it is secure on your vessel. If it’s not it could mean losing your motor. Stability will also likely be important so that you can have full control of your motor without the mount shifting during the process.
How To Make Your Own Motor Mount Kit
Making your own motor mount can be less expensive than buying a kit but if you choose to make your own you’ll need to make sure it can handle the power of the motor to avoid damage. It can also be a good idea to make sure it’s connected to your kayak securely so that it doesn’t come loose.
There is a way you can make your own mount that can be easily removed when it’s not needed. This means you don’t need to drill into your yak or have anything permanently fixed to your vessel.
What You Need
- Two 1x6s
- One 2×4
- Two ¾ inch PVC pipes
- Mounting bracket/plate such as this
- Securing straps, similar to this
Step 1: Measure Your Mounting Space
Before you begin, it can be a good idea to measure the space where you plan to fix the mount. Your measurements will usually determine how long you need the 2×4 and 1x6s to be. Measure the diameter of your scupper holes too, as you may need a different diameter of PVC pipes to make sure they fit snugly and securely.
Step 2: Cut Your Wood
Now that you have the measurements of your mounting area, cut your two 1x6s to fit the width of your space. If your space is in the tank well the 1x6s should fit snugly so that they don’t move around. You may have to angle your cut depending on the shape of your kayak.
Video: DIY Kayak Trolling Motor Mount
Your 2×4 will be slightly longer than your 1x6s because it will need to have the motor mounted to it. This may be as much as twice as long as the length of your 1×6.
Step 3: Cut Two Holes In One 1×6
Measure the distance between the two scupper holes that you will be using and mark this onto the 1×6 that will be flat on the deck of your kayak. Cut the holes out so that there’s room for your ¾ inch PVC pipes to fit.
If your scupper holes and pipes are different sizes then you’ll need to adjust the size of the hole to fit your own measurements.
Step 4: Join Your Planks
The next step is to join your wood planks together. The two 1x6s should be glued and screwed at a 90 degree angle along their lengths. This is so that one piece will sit flat on the deck of your boat and one piece will be positioned vertically.
Next, using the same method, attach your 2×4 along its length to the vertical piece of your 1×6 so that you have one side of the 2×4 jutting out. This longer side will be where you will mount your motor.
Step 5: Secure The Bracket
Attach a mounting plate or bracket to further secure the joins between the 2×4 and the 1×6. It can be useful to do this on both sides of the joints for added strength and stability.
Attach a bracket to the extended end of your 2×4 for attaching your motor.
Step 6: Attach The PVC Pipes
After measuring carefully, attach your PVC pipes so that they are perpendicular to the 2×4 and 1×6. They should fit through the holes you made in the 1×6 a few steps ago.
Secure the pipes to the rest of the mount using the straps. This can help them to stay firmly in place.
Step 7: Mount On Your Kayak
Now that you’ve built the motor mount you can attach it to your kayak by placing the pipes into the scupper holes. Make sure the 1×6 is secure against the deck of your boat. It can help to secure it with a leash in case of accidents.
A trolling motor can be a useful addition to your kayak if you want to fish or increase your power over the water but you will usually require a motor mount before you can think about attaching the motor.
Remember to think about the type of mount that you’ll need for the power of your motor and make sure that the mount is compatible with your particular kayak. Keep in mind that not all mounts will work with all boats.
Have you had a go at making your own mount? Tell us in the comments. Maybe you know someone looking to make their own? Share this with them.
Just want to buy your motor mount? Here’s a popular one at Amazon.