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Jason, Boat and Mechanical Expert
Category: Boat
Satisfied Customers: 210
Experience:  10 yrs. running and working at my boat dealership.
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Any good way to mount a bow mount trolling motor on a bowr

Customer Question

Any good way to mount a bow mount trolling motor on a bowrider?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Boat
Expert:  Jason replied 6 years ago.
What make, model, and year boat do you have?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
2005 sea ray 180 sport. I have a homemade plywood platform that sits where the seat cushons go. It is approx 12" below the rim of the bow.
Expert:  Jason replied 6 years ago.
What I have done in the past for customers requires an aluminum fabrication shop. If the customer wanted a bow mount style motor, we would remove the front nav light, and have a 1/4" aluminum plate the correct size for the motor positioned on the bow. The welder would then fabricate sides to the plate to match the contours of the boat. This assembly would then be thru bolted to the bow. We then would drill the necessary bolt holes to mount the motor. Then the assembly would be taken off, and sent to a paint shop to be powder coated. The paint shop can usually come pretty close to the color of the boat with the powder coating. You then have to use a removable pole style nav light on the bow. The easier option is to have the welder fabricate a mount to utilize a transom mounted trolling motor. This would entail using a 4.5" round plate mounted to the bow. Then using 1.5" round tubing make a 90 degree bend in the pipe. The pipe is then cut at the necessary angle to match the contour of the bow, and the plate. The bent pipe that is now hanging out over the bow is cut off to where it would be flush with the rub rail. then the welder fabricates a 8"X6"X1.5" thick box to be welded onto the pipe. This simulates a transom to mount the motor on. This assembly could then be powdercoated like mentioned above. I hope you were able to follow this. It is very challenging to describe over the net like this. I could try to draw you a better description, and fax it to you if you like. As you already know this is a challenging problem to tackle.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
OK going the transom mount direction couldnt I use a piece of angle, short leg to mount to my platform, longer leg coming up along side the bow wall, just high enough to clear the wall, and mount the motor to this?
Expert:  Jason replied 6 years ago.
You could definitely rig something like that up. However, a couple of things come to mind. First, the platform you already have would have to be bolted to the boat. Second, whatever you fabricate needs to extend out past the rub rail. Third, if you do go this route, I would recommend not only attaching it to the platform, but also fabricate it where it could also be mounted to the boat on the top cap as well because your platform is a good ways below the gunwale. Trolling motors have quite a bit of thrust so this mount needs to be as secure as possible, not to mention the stresses placed on it when moving from spot to spot.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.


Good point(s)


Can you send me that sketch from the previous answer via email?

Expert:  Jason replied 6 years ago.
I do not really have a way of scanning it. Do you have access to a fax? I also wanted to make sure to tell you to use backing plates anywhere you thru bolt the bracket to the boat. If you do have access to a fax, I can draw something up. It just won't be real pretty. Jason
Expert:  Jason replied 6 years ago.
I forgot that Birdsall Marine makes a bracket similar to what I am talking about. Visit their website at Look at the category "flats boat accessories", then look at then look at the deck mount trolling motor bracket. This may even work for you, but your bow slopes down, which would cant the motor. You may be able to special order it from them without the bottom plate attached, and then have a welding shop cut and weld it to the contours of your bow. You could also leave it as it, and make an angled spacer to match the contour of your bow. Jason
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I checked the birdsall marine sight, saw the mount, but question the stability for my application-- I would assume the best place to mount would be on the bow, but is my hull thick enough here?
Expert:  Jason replied 6 years ago.
It should be thick enough. However, whatever you decide you need to put as large a backing plate as you can fit to displace the pressure associated with the mount. The backing plate can be plywood, starboard, or aluminum.

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