Tag Archive: no motor zone

Bassin’ a lake where the big boats can’t go (video)

By Joe Stauder

HBBCO Stand Up Fishing Kayaks

My Wavewalk got me to a honey hole! The Bass were hungry on a lake where the big boats can’t go! The Top water bite was on, what a blast! I tied on a chug bug first thing and I caught six but did not get them all on video. I did manage to get three on video By switching between a do nothing worm & a chug bug I just hammered them. They were taking both with a vengeance. What a morning!

Joe

 

A better two-person fishing boat

What’s a good two-person fishing boat?

A good two-person fishing boat is one that allows for two large size fishermen to fish from it in full comfort, for long hours. According to this basic definition, most boats out there are suitable as two-person fishing boats, except sit-in and sit-on-top (SOT) tandem fishing kayaks, which are neither comfortable nor stable enough for average people to fish from. So this preliminary definition is too inclusive, and we need to refine it by asking the following question –

What’s a better two-person fishing boat?

This is where the actual discussion begins –

1. More than two anglers on board.

One requirement that comes to mind is the ability to accommodate a crew of more than two full-size anglers, and in fact, most motorboats out there fulfill this requirement, although on a typical trip they don’t take more than two anglers on a board. In fact, most anglers fish either alone or with one fishing buddy on board, which is to say that being able to take a third and a fourth passenger is a feature that may be nice to have, but it’s not essential for a two person fishing boat. In other words, size may matter in this case, but only to marginal extent.

2. Less than two anglers on board – Very important!

Typically, recreational fishermen fish by themselves or in pairs. This implies that a good two-person fishing boat should also be practical and even easy to use for one angler who wishes to use it alone, without a fishing buddy – but most fishing boats aren’t.  This failure to accommodate one angler is the result of the boat’s large size, and consequently, the need to transport it with a trailer, launch it from a trailer, and take it out onto a trailer… And while this may sometime be possible for one experienced and strong fisherman to perform, it’s not given to everyone. This is to say that a really good two-person fishing boat must also be a good one-person fishing boat – by definition.

3. Mobility is key

A typical two-person fishing boat is fairly large, and requires transportation on a trailer, which limits the number of launching and beaching spots for its users, makes them lose precious time at boat ramps and on the way to them, and limits the areas where they can go and fish. Such boats may be comfortable to fish from, but this comfort comes at a price that you wouldn’t necessarily want to pay, if you were offered a better alternative. And indeed, some two-person fishing boats such as lightweight dinghies and Jon boats can be car topped by two strong men, or transported in a pickup truck bed, and they can be launched and beached regardless of boat ramps.  The problem with this class of small boats is that you can’t paddle them effectively, and you still need a fishing partner to handle them on land, both when carrying them from and to your vehicle, and for car-topping and unloading them.

4. The shallow water challenge

Unless you’re a blue-water fisherman, sooner or later you’d want to fish in shallow water, because these waters offer some of the best fisheries. But shallow waters are not just shallow, they’re often infested with vegetation and underwater obstacles, and we use the word ‘infested’ because although vegetation and underwater structures make great habitats for fish, they’re not that great for boating, to say the least, and they can cause you serious trouble with your motor’s propeller. This means that even a boat with a very shallow draft, such as some microskiff have, may not perform well in shallow water due to your inability to propel it effectively, meaning that it’s not comfortable to paddle, and it requires too much effort to push-pole.
Shallow water as a type of fishery that demands particular things from a boat, one of which is the ability to propel it manually (seriously, forget about pedal drives 😀 ) by using either double blade (kayak) or single blade (canoe) paddles. If you’re serious about shallow water, think paddling too, or get either a mud motor or an air-jet motor for your boat.

5. Launching and beaching issues

Good launching and beaching spots are not always available, and you may need to launch your boat and beach it in less than perfect conditions such as we described in the previous ‘Shallow Water’ section of this article, or in places called ‘Rock Gardens’. In both cases, the ability to propel your boat with an alternative, human-powered means is critical. By this we mean that a really good two-person fishing boat is one that offers its crew, be it two anglers or a single one, to paddle and push-pole easily and effectively, over long distances and in problematic water and weather conditions.

6. No-Motor Zones (NMZ)

These fisheries where no motor boats are allowed grow in number every year, and some of them are just too good to be left for others to fish in. NMZ are yet another reason why versatility in propulsion is important when you think about your next fishing boat.

7. Canoe?

No. A canoe is unlikely to fit your requirements for a good two-person fishing boat for a number of reasons, which are:
Although some canoes are wide, they’re not particularly stable, especially when powered by an outboard motor.
For the same reason (stability issues), canoes aren’t ideal for fishing standing, especially for average and above-average size fishermen, as well as elderly ones, and we all know that without the ability to stand up and fish, no boat can be labeled a good fishing boat.
Typically, canoes don’t offer much as far as comfort goes, and unless you’re super fit, that’s a problem when long fishing trips are concerned.
If you try to paddle a canoe by yourself on a windy day, chances are that you won’t try again… This is because canoes track poorly under wind, and they’re too hard for most solo paddlers to handle under such conditions.

But does such a two-person fishing boat even exist?

This article seems to raise the bar a little too high in realistic terms, doesn’t it? It describes a craft that’s lightweight enough for one guy to car top, yet can take two large-size fishermen in full comfort on a long fishing trip, and be motorized with a powerful outboard motor.  The same boat is required to be very stable, naturally, and still be narrow enough for comfortable paddling… These contradicting requirements exclude even the Wavewalk™ 500, since with its 360 lbs recommended load capacity this unique watercraft cannot accommodate more than one large-size fishermen, but they don’t exclude to new Wavewalk™ 700 , which has a 580 lbs load capacity, and was designed to do just that, without giving up the solo abilities in launching, paddling, standing, poling, fishing, motorizing, beaching, and car-topping.

Transom mount for long (L) 20″ shaft outboard motors – W500 Series

Wavewalk® TMM 20-A Transom Motor Mount for 20″ Long (L) Shaft Outboard Motors

This Mount is For The 500 Series Only

IMPORTANT: We recommend using 20″ (long) shaft motors, since they can be mounted at the rear end of the cockpit, and not a few inches behind it. When the motor is closer to you, it’s easier for you to start it and access its controls, and it makes steering easier. Only 20″ long (L) outboard motors fit outboard manufacturers’ requirements for the depth of the anti-ventilation plate below the boat’s lowest point. Do not use 15″ short (S) outboard motors with this motor mount.

 

  • Price:  $150.
  • Shipping:

No extra charge when shipped together with a W kayak.
When shipped separately: $30 S&H in the continental US (48 states)
When shipped separately: $35 S&H to Canada and Alaska

Materials and Construction

The TMM 20-A is made from 3/4″ thick Medium Density Overlay (MDO), a composite wood and polymer resin (a.k.a. plastic) material developed for outdoor use such as signs and marine applications.  The front and back of the MDO panels come coated with a waterproof polymer-infused layer, and the sides of the parts that form the TMM 20-A are waterproofed with polyurethane. Unlike the TMM 20 motor mounts that’s  made from Trex, which is a heavier material, the MDO used in the construction of the TMM 20-A makes it considerably lighter.

The parts from which the TMM 20-A is made are cut with a computerized router for maximal precision, best fit, and optimal strength. They are assembled and glued together with waterproof adhesive. The tab-and-slot technique and ‘caisson’ design applied in this product give it additional strength.

There is no need to paint this motor mount, but in case you want to, it can be painted with special paint for outdoor plastic, such as Krylon Fusion spray paint. Regular paint doesn’t adhere well to its surface.

The bolts, washers and nuts used in this motor mount are made from zinc plated steel.

Dimensions and Technical Specifications

  • Width:  21.5″ (54.5 cm)
  • Height:  5″ (12.7 cm)
  • Depth:  6.5″ (16.5 cm)
  • Weight:  2.5 lbs (1.14 kg)
  • Horsepower Compliance:   This motor mount was tested with small outboard gas motors such as commonly used with Wavewalk® 500 kayaks.  We do not recommended to use it with motors stronger than 3 hp. In case you have a more powerful motor and you want to use it with this motor mount,  you’d have to reinforce its mounting plate or get a TMM Heavy Duty (HD) 700 motor mount. Failing to do so is hazardous, and could result in serious accidents.

How to attach this motor mount to your Wavewalk® 500 kayak

Place the mount as close as possible to the rear end of the cockpit, as seen in the picture below, make sure it is centered, mark the two spots where you’d need to drill 3/8″ holes for the blots, and drill.

motor-mount-for-20-long-outboard

TMM 20-A Transom Motor Mount

Bolt the motor mount in its place by tightening the nut knobs with their Tee nuts facing down.

You can secure the mount in place with an extra pair of 5/16″ nuts. Doing so could reduce unwanted vibrations resulting from the wooden knobs getting loose.

 

More about motorizing your kayak »

Safety and Operation

Important:

Before going on a motorized trip, verify that the wide wooden bolt knobs that secure the motor mount to the boat are safely tightened to the maximum. Failing to tighten the bolt knobs could result in unwanted vibrations and noise. If you feel such unusual vibrations and/or hear unusual noise, stop the motor, turn around, and tighten the bolt knobs to the max.
Driving with loose bolt knobs is hazardous, similarly to driving with the motor’s clamp screws loose, and it could result in an accident.

Never operate the motor without the motor’s stop switch (“kill-switch”) attached to your arm.

For motor operation and maintenance please refer to the motor’s owner’s manual.

Time to downsize from a fishing motorboat to something smaller, cheaper and smarter

USCG stats - recreational vessels registration by year.

U.S. boat registration has been declining in recent years. From a peak of 12,942,000 boats in 2005, the number went down to 12,102,000 in 2012 – a  7% decline.

This figure is intriguing for a number of reasons, and the first one is that during this period, the US population increased by a similar percentage. In addition, regardless of their country of origin, new immigrants love boating and fishing as much as other Americans love these activities, and those who can afford it get a boat, be it a yacht or a kayak, depending on their budget.

What has caused the decline in the number of leisure boats Americans own is a continuing erosion in average, middle-class Americans’ income, especially their disposable income, which is the part used for spending on luxury items such as boats – Just for the record, the number of leisure boats owned by Americans still tops the number of leisure boats owned by all other people in the world.

The typical boat here is a motorboat, usually powered by an outboard motor (or more than one motor), and typically used for fishing. Owning such a boat is no longer as easy as it used to be if you’re not rich, which most of us aren’t.

But not being able to afford a center console or a bass boat, or even a skiff, doesn’t mean you should start fishing from shore, or worse – stick yourself on one of those wet, unstable and uncomfortable fishing kayaks that may altogether dissuade you from fishing… For a fraction of the cost of a traditional motorboat, you can fish out of a comfortable, stable, dry and fun watercraft that has the word ‘kayak’ in its name, and can even be paddled, but in every other sense it’s a totally different animal – We’re talking about the W kayak, outfitted with a small outboard gas engine.

Words are cheap and ineffective, so why not watch this video and see for yourself?

Intriguing?  –

Think about it: This little personal micro skiff is not only comparable to traditional small motorboats such as jon boats, dinghies and small skiffs in terms of fishing (i.e. ‘fishability’) – it even exceeds the performance you got used to, and in more than one way.

Here’s a couple examples:

  • Forget about a boat trailer – This watercraft can be easily car topped.
  • Forget about boat ramps – You can launch this super kayak practically anywhere.
  • No motor zones? No problem – You can paddle this ‘kayak’ more easily than you can paddle any other kayak out there. You can even paddle standing, as well as fish standing up in full confidence.

Food for thought? We’ve created a special website offering detailed technical information to motorized anglers who are looking for something smarter to fish from, and by that we rule out kayaks, naturally. The website is called Personal Microskiff > Check it out!