Electric Trolling Motor for 17' Grumman

I want to add a trolling motor to my 17’ Grumman but don’t want to invest in more thrust than I need for slow, flat rivers and lake paddling.

I’m looking at the Minn Kota Endura 50lb, thrust,$200 at WalMart


and also looking at the Motor Guide Thruster T34

with 34lb thrust for $100


My typical trips are river camping, two people,

average gear, small ice chest, motor’s battery, etc.

A total of about 400lbs maybe.

My question is, will the 34lb thrust be sufficient

to handle my upstream, flat situations in 1-3mph currents, average winds, etc.

on the 17’ Grumman or would paying twice as much for the 50lb MotorGuide be advisable.

I also plan on building a set of outrigger

floats for stability when motoring but the setup shouldn’t weigh more tha 20-30lbs??



My experience has all been in flat water
But my 30 pushes a 17 foot Mohawk glass canoe at a 4-5 mph clip with no effort. The 50 would give a bit extra thrust for upstream when the water is at the higher flow rate, but I’m not sure you need it if the goal is just to go upstream and speed isn’t the most important variable.

Suck it up
You don’t want to be in a situation where the current is stronger than you expect, or the wind is in a direction you didn’t expect, and you can’t go against it. On the lakes, no problem. 30 will do you fine. There’s about a $50 difference between a 30 and a 46 ft/lb thrust Minn Kota Endura (the most expensive line of the transom mount trolling motors). When you’re going against stronger current or stronger wind, that $50 will seem like money well spent.

  • Big D

Speed under perfect conditions?
I also wanted to ask what the approximate speed would be in a no current, no wind conditions with just me

@170lbs, and enough weight up front to level the boat

out with the 34 vs the 50lb.

Speed isn’t that important but still curious of what the two motors would do flat out pushing the old Grumman.


46lb Minn Kota, thanks
Thanks Big D

I’d be foolish to buy the 50lb Motor Guide

over the 46lb Minn Kota.


As for speed, the range will most
likely be 5-7 mph on flat water. Handheld GPS wasn’t around when I hooked up my 30 lb thrust, but from time/distance covered, best guess on my 17 footer was 5 mph. But, the load was heavier with me at 230.

My experience
I have the 50lb Minn-Kota Endura and I swapped out the prop with a 3 blade prop from kipawapropellers (http://www.kipawapropellers.com/) I use this rig on a square stern Esquif Mallard on small lakes/creeks and mounted on a side motormount on my OT Tripper on rivers.

I can not overemphasize the difference that prop made…it has not only provided a major speed increase, but the pure torque and power that allows you to drive against the current makes me giddy just typing about it. $43 well spent.

Is there a problem with Motor Guide
I had always sort of considered Minn Kota and MotorGuide to be equivalents in the transom trolling motor market. I expect that Minn Kota has the market for the drop rigs with gizmos that folks put on their bass boats and such. But with the low end transom mounts, I always figured they were pretty much the same.

Is there something I should be worried about with MotorGuide?


Big D

MG vs MK & Motor Mount
I wish had bought a square end canoe back when I got this one about 15 years ago but I was younger and

paddling was what I wanted. Still do but the silent

electric motor is what I’d like now. So cleverly rigging my double end will be as good and the rigging will be a fun project to piece together.

I can design a motor mount that I could put the motor on the stern but will need to configure a clever

stick steering setup and wire in some type of on/off, speed and reverse control box that I can mount near me.

Maybe incorporate the controls into the stick steering

grip. Probably lean towards building most of this contraption out of PVC and just let my imagination run wild with the project. I dig building this kind of stuff about as much as I do

using it.

The three blade prop will be a good upgrade and it’s

probably always good to have an extra prop onboard too.

To answer Big D, the Motorguide vs Minn Kota, good, better, best I don’t know but either will be plenty

good enough for what I need. I’m just looking for the best bang for the buck and second or even third best

should be good enough for me. Price and thrust

is where my mind is right now.


Motor Guide tends to be less expensive
I just used Minn Kota as a standard because they’re more expensive. By doing that, I picked the largest differential in price between a 30 and a 46 just to show that all things considered, it isn’t much expense and is well worth spending the little extra money to get more thrust. Safety first, and in this case, safety comes in power.

My MinnKota’s transom mount broke. If I can’t get a new motor mount, I was planning to get a MotorGuide 55 ft/lb thrust motor. The 40 Minn Kota does me OK, but the few extra dollars for a 55 will definitely be in my favor on the river. It will run down the battery sooner, but that’s OK, I still have a paddle and oars aboard. If the paddle runs down near the end, I can still maneuver and still get to the ramp safely (though more slowly).

  • Big D

Battery Drain Time to # Thrust Lbs
One thing that’s crossed my mind but I haven’t put as much thought into as I should is the battery drain

of using the different thrust motors. Like what would be the

difference in the 34 vs 46 vs 55 etc, etc.

I like the thought of 50 to 55 and I could always carry along a backup battery to be able to use the bigger motors. There is an Excide Batery Store

in town that sells “blemished” baterries for half price.

I need to locate a chart somewhere online giving the full battery charge life of using the different thrust motors. IE, does a 34lb motor drain the battery half as much as a 55lb in same time of use. I’m sure there are all kinds of scientific curves on battery dicharge to what thrust motor that goes way beyond my capabilities to cypher it out. I’m sure some geek out there has figured it all out for folks like me.


I see more Mo-Guides on bass boats
than Minn-Kota. Around here, M-K is the most popular transom mount motor. The M-Guides tend to be more expensive, transom or bow mounted.

Some things to consider …

– Last Updated: Jun-22-08 7:20 PM EST –

......... you get what you pay for , so the following will give you an idea of where the extra cost goes .

Minn-Kota :

The Endura series is a plain jane electric eating motor , intial cost is less .

Consider the Maxxum series , that has digital maximizer technology which gives you 5x (on avg.) the use on a single batt. charge . The "maximizer" also is a varialbe speed throtle control , not fixed speed 1,2,3 etc. fixed positions . The Maxxum series has a 40T and a 55T in 12v (w/digi. maximizer tech.)
Both the 40T and 55T have a 36" shaft opt.

I wouldn't hesatate to get the 55T , you don't need to run it wide open , unless you want to . The extra push when needed will be there on demand . The extra push of the 55T gives you more flexability as to how much upstream current you can handle , how much weight you will put in your canoe on a given day , how quick you want to get to a particular spot on the lake/river .

You will need a good batt. charger . Minn-Kota has a MK110P for you . It has all 3 functions , Bulk charge (intial charge for drained down batt.) ,, Absorption charge (the last 25% to top off , lets batt. cool and absorb top off),, maintenance charge (this is a float charge that keeps batt. topped off while not using-always on the charger which is what you want , always , think of it as a "trickle charge").

The MK110P is a single bank charger (means for just one batt. at a time) .
The MK210P is a 2 bank charger (2 batts. at a time) , say for 24v system or having a back-up for a 12v. .

You don't need a Minn-Kota charger , but you will certainly want a 3 stage charger no matter what brand to properly charge and maintain Marine Deep Cycle batts.

Batt. charge life (endurance) is a combination of AH and motor draw . As said the "maximizer technology" that Minn-Kota uses gives you way more time on any full batt. charge . This will also allow you to use lesser AH (amp hour) batt. if desired . Usually the lesser the AH , the smaller and lighter the batt. .

Marine deep cycle batts. run between 50 AH to 130 AH on avg. . You do not want to buy a cheap batt. (just think of AH as useful "TIME" from a full charge)!!

As for what AH you would want for yourself , that all depends on how many hours you think you will be running the motor and at what amp draw (speed) . More speed draws more amps. . This is where the "maximizer" shines at 60% and up speeds .

It is probably reasonable to think 1/2 the time at full speed (100% of motor amp draw down), 1/2 the time at 30% speed (30% motor amp draw down).
Calculate the amp draw from the specs. of the chosen motor (mfg. will be able to give amp draw specs.) at these settings , then chose a batt. with an AH that is able to meet those needs and add 25% more time to the AH of the batt.

We run 2 - 100 AH batts. on a Minn-Kota 65 lb. (24v) bow motor (has maximizer tech.) for two days in a row (electric is on about 12 hours) , and still have 1/2 charge left . This is a heavy Jon boat with 2-3 people in it and gear .

If you get 1 - 70 AH batt. and the Maxxum 55T (12v) , it wouldn't surprise me if you could run 5-6 hrs at full bore , and twice that time with avg. use on a single batt.

now for , Motor Guide :


(Min-Kota only as far as I'm concerned , ands that's a lifetime of using them , others may disagree)

You can "pull" your boat as well as "push' it you know . Perhaps more preferable in upstream currents , much more precise control .

50 is better than 30
I’d go with the 50 to have some reserve power.

Battery drain is relative to power used/required.

Have you checked the corp websites/
I haven’t checked them, but each motor usually has some kind of curve on it. Just be sure to get a battery designed for trolling motors - a “deep cycle” battery rather than a regular car battery. A regular car battery is designed for blasting out a lot of juice over a short time to crank the starter motor. A deep cycle battery is designed to apportion out a little juice over a long period of time.

  • Big D

I can attest to the deep cycle batts …

– Last Updated: Jun-23-08 7:10 PM EST –

......... that "Cosco" sells . They have performed flawlessly .

"Trojan" makes (probably) the best marine deep cycle batt. (or at least equal to the best available) , although they cost quite a bit more than the ones "Cosco" has .

The "Trojan" batts. are best used for very frequent usage (work horses), under such frequent usage they will outlast most others 3 to 1 because of their much heavier (thicker) lead and it's securing inside the batt. . This also makes them weigh more than their AH comparables though .

grummin motor mount?
I have a 15’ grummin without a flat bow.back seat is too far back to put at trolling motor mount. can I place the mount in front of the back seat?. I’m using a 30# thrust trolling motor. I’ll place the battery in the middle of the canoe. my wife sits in the front.

grummin motor mount?
I have a 15’ grummin without a flat bow.back seat is too far back to put at trolling motor mount. can I place the mount in front of the back seat?. I’m using a 30# thrust trolling motor. I’ll place the battery in the middle of the canoe. my wife sits in the front.