Minn Kota or Motorguide?

Since I am not getting any younger I am thinking to buy me a trolling motor for my 14’ Sporstman Mohawk. I do fish and also paddle with my kid (I do most of the paddling but that’s ok). After reading the forums general consense is a 30lbs thrust trolling motor would be the ideal way to go; I have also read somewhere that Minn Kota 30 last longer battery life than Motorguide motors. Wal Mart sells a Motorguide Thruster T34 (34Lbs thrust) for the same price the local BPS sells the Minn Kota 30. So I just have to decide and that’s why I am asking your help guys. Which way should I go, Minn Kota 30 or Motorguide T34? Thanks.

I use a Minkota
30 LB thrust. got it as a xmas present from the wife 7-8 years ago. Works fine for several hrs in 5th speed gear. I rarely use it anymore due to lack of time. When I did use it frequently, I just used it for joy riding in the heat of the summer. We’ve got some big lakes around here where I can cruise for hrs. Brought 2 batteries, a fully charged marine battery and a secondary smaller one. When the marine battery lost charge after several hrs, I’d switch to the smaller battery and head for the car. I use to get 4-5 hrs of cruising and cover 8-9+ miles. Remember, these were hot summer days when it was too hot to paddle but nice enough to be lazy on the water, quiet too. I now use it for those rare days when I can get out fishing. I use it on a 17’ Explorer.

Shaft length may effect your decission

– Last Updated: Dec-11-06 7:14 PM EST –

as well. Many years ago when I got mine the 30 had a short shaft, but anything with more thrust was long shaft only.

Liked my Mini Kota well enough. Did not like lugging that deep cycle battery. Did a good job on the trip we bought it for, but not since. Motor has sat for years since it's initial use.



You are right!
I can’t find nothing less than 30" shaft. I know I can cut off about 6" after what I have read in the forums. The Motorguide shaft is 28" but not much different. My major concern is being the Motorguide 34lbs while the MK is 30, I think I have read some people saying Motorguide do not perform as well. Thanks for your help.

One suggestion

– Last Updated: Dec-12-06 8:12 PM EST –

I can't be sure since I haven't paid attention to this subject in a while, but I *think* some trolling motors still use resistors or some other crude method to control the power output. Shop carefully, and get a motor with a totally electronic speed control - one which delivers full battery voltage to the motor at all times, but reduces the actual power output by "chopping" the current flow. Except at top speed, battery life is considerably greater for motors using electronic control, because no power is lost in the control mechanism at lower power settings.

I think any major brand motor probably offers electronic speed control, but they may not offer it on their cheaper models.

I sold both brands

– Last Updated: Dec-13-06 4:18 AM EST –

and Shakespeare too and it always comes down to personal preferences. The competition is tight, so if one adds a feature or improvement so does the other.
I own a Minn Kota 10lb adjustable shaft thats about 20 years old and a Motor Guide 24lb that is about 15 and a Shakespeare 6lb that who knows how old it is. The 10 really pushes my disco 158 along, even with two in the boat when mounted on the OT outrigger probably owing to the adjustable shaft allowing you to get it at just the right depth and trim. The 24lb is almost too much power and and makes the boat hard to handle above about half throttle when turning turns no matter how it is trimmed and the longer shaft is awkward too. A mohawk 14 would do just fine with a low thrust 15lbs or less for fishing or just goofing around and it definitely would be easier on the battery.
30 is probably overkillfor a canoe, unless toting a big load is in the cards or you just want to go really fast.

Minkota been around a long time!
Minkota has been around a long time. They are a pretty good name, and has a great reputation.

Something else you need to look at…

Look at the size of the propeller. A long propeller will be best for torque in the water, as a short length propeller is more for speed, and will slip (cavitate?) if you try to push too heavy of a load with it.

A longer propellor blade normally is turned slower by the motor, so it will “Grip” the water better. This will work the best when you and the kid and gear are in the canoe.

A long propeller is normally turned by a gear box for more torque,. The short propellers are turned right by the motor shaft, and then are cheaper to make, but less torque.

Just my humble opinion.