Mounting a Rod Holder

I am getting ready to mount a Scotty rod holder to the front deck of my SIK. I plan on using the basic mount that comes with the holder. I was a bit worried, however, about the rigidity of the kayak deck, so I was considering placing a piece of plywood under the deck and then mounting the holder through the deck and then the wood. Any thoughts on this? I also welcome any other advice on mounting a rod holder :slight_smile:

Wood ? I use plastic .
Wood might work fine, I just like to use a piece of sheet polyethylene to back up and stiffen a mounting surface. I put a dashboard on a R.A.M. mount that holds my F.F. and Scotty rod holder. and all the flexing from bouncy water or getting a fish on, seems to be from the hatch I mounted it on. I need to do the same thing and use a large backing to provide the proper rigidity. If you don’t have any poly, I have lots of blue poly from a chem drum I butchered. I could send you some if you want,or you could chop up a plastic bucket but that may be too thin. I think if you wanted to use wood , try to use a hard wood like oak or some other very rigid wood.

You need something thin and flexible to mold to the hull or you will do more damage than just mounting it. Use 2 layers if necessary but dont deform the hull. If the surface mount base does not fit correctly and causes stress, lay some sandpaper face up on the hull and form the mount to the hull.

Thin, but rigid, aluminum plate works
well. Plywood that’s not treated will eventually rot.

marine grade plywood
should do the trick, if it is made in 1/4 inch, and i think it is.

Another question
Is there a need to seal around the rod holder when it is mounted to make it completely waterprrof on an SOT? If so, what is the best sealant to use?

Its insurance. Marine grade silicone
is preferred, but I’ve done it with regular silicone and had no problems. Just what I had on hand.

Marine grade is available in 3mm and it still needs to be treated. HDPE plastic is about the best backing.

A couple of thoughts. First, there
should be no problem mounting a Scotty to the deck without backing. Second, if you are worried it may pull loose, instead of a deck mount, get one of Scotty’s flush mounts. With the flush mounting system, there’s no need for backing and, frankly, I think the look better, interfere with loading and hauling a kayak less, and are sturdier.

Scotty rodholders
jerlfletcher, thanks again for all the info. I need to take a look at some Scottys in the stores so I can get better ideas on the mounting of them.

Unless you’re riding around…
in a plastic envelop, you aren’t likely to need any backing.

If you’re mounting to a SinK, then use fender washers on the inside if you want some extra insurance.

If you’re mounting to an SOT and can get you hand to the inside so that you can put on a nut, then also use the fender washers. If not, then use well nuts with a washer built in. You’ll be all right.

The key thing to know is that you drill ONE HOLE AT A TIME. Do NOT drill all four holes at once. Drill one, put in a screw but don’t tighten all the way. Mark your second, drill, it, put in a screw but don’t tighten all the way, etc. Work slow and steady.

  • Big D

Knew I did it wrong.

Me too.
How do you think I learned to do it one hole at a time on repeat adventures with a power drill?

  • Big D

Great Advice
Thanks to everyone for the great advice. I am interested by the flush mount option and saw two different types, a square mount (no. 244) and a round one (no. 344). I put a link below:

Any thoughts on either of these options?

I’ve used both. My Loon has the round
mounts. I wanted the rectangular, but couldn’t find them locally and, with shipping, the rectangular mounts would have cost as much as the rod holder. The rectangular are tidier and you can fit them in minimal spaces. Get them if you can.

I just bought, installed, and used a
small Scotty holder for the first time today. I have a Dick’s branded Perception America 11 (which is cheaper plastic than regular Perceptions) and it has a HUGE cockpit. I made a plywood deck that simply slides into the gunwale and fits tight enough that it doesn’t need any hardware to mount it (makes it nice to pull it out before I load it under my tonneau cover).

With my rod in the Scotty today while trolling a slow moving river, my hook & weight caught under a rock. By the time I was able to slow, turn and get head back upstream, the rod was bent backward and I could barely pull it out of the holder. My point being, that it put a lot of pressure on the holder, and, IF it was mounted on the deck of some of the cheaper plastic yaks like mine, I’m not sure how well it would have held. I’d suggest some type of backing plate or a least some large washers underneath for the unexpected is a good idea. Better yet, if you have a large enough cockpit like mine (also the OT Loons are similar) try the plywood deck idea (thanks for those that suggested it).

Good luck . . . .

The flush mounts take care of any
likely problem you may have with hangups such as that you describe. I hang up at least 7-8 times a trip when drifting bottom for catfish, often doubling rods over, and there’s no discernible movement at the base of the mount. Just wish I could figure out a way not to loose so much terminal tackle.

New flush mount
Scotty has a new flush mount that only requires one hole. The large one. It has a threaded body and is very neat but you have to have access to the back side. Cabela’s carries them and is the cheapest I have seen. I have seen them at a few other online suppliers. I am going with ram tubes this time.

Hangups are part of the game
You’d have been fine. I’ve not heard from one kayak fisherman to say that they’ve ever had a rod holder mount come loose. I’ve heard of and seen rod holders come loose from their mounts, but there was no damage to the mounts or to the kayaks. Each time it happened was with a Berkley rod holder, so I recommend against that brand and in favor of the Scotty brand which I use personally and have abused with no ill effect.

This is really funny coming from me (if you knew me better you’d understand just how funny), but don’t worry so much about what could have happened and didn’t. That plastic, even on cheaper 'yaks, is pretty darn strong.

  • Big D