Fiberglass or fiber-reinforced plastic boat is strong, does not rust or corrode. Hence, they are a popular and inexpensive choice. In this type of boat, the hull is made up of fiberglass instead of wood or steel hulls.
Although they are easy to maintain, they are susceptible to basic degradation from extreme temperatures over time. Installing a bow mount trolling motor on fiberglass can be more tricky than the standard boat hulls.
In this article, we will discuss how to install a bow mount trolling motor on a fiberglass boat in easy steps so even a beginner can do it.
Equipment required to install a bow mount trolling motor
You will require the following tools for the mount installation:
- Wrench kit
- Drilling machine
- Measuring tape
A step-by-step guide to install a bow mount trolling motor on a fiberglass boat
Now, let’s start with the steps one-by-one:
To mount the motor, choose the side you want, depending on where you will fish or how you will operate the boat. If you direct the boat from the side of the port, think about mounting the motor on the starboard. It even improves visibility.
With the help of a drilling machine, drill the screw and steadily remove the securing screws with a screwdriver. Then carefully remove the plate panels on the trolling motor. This step will expose the mounting holes.
This step is crucial for a fiberglass boat as you will need to adjust the height on the mount since it has raised edges along the hull. All you need to do is elevate the rear of the trolling motor mount to level it to the hull portion, which is high.
Before fixing the hole position on the bow mount, you will need to assemble the motor. Assign by attaching the head assembly and motor shaft to the mount. Once you have assembled the two, place the motor in a steady position alongside the bow parallel to the side.
Place the shaft in such a position that it is close to the centerline of the boat. If the propeller or shaft is not close to the center, there may be issues while steering or drifting while using the trolling motor.
Place the exterior of the mount such that it enables the motor to extend and clear the tip of the bow. This may vary considering the different motor brands. Still, it will normally require a flush position with the surface of the boat or a less than 1″ overhang.
After the motor has been placed in a secure position, check the position of the motorhead. One has to make sure that it doesn’t overhang on the side of the boat.
Otherwise, it might break the motorhead if one bumps up against any vertical surface or a dock. Place the mount with the help of a straight-edge, and make sure that the motorhead is within the boat’s confinement.
To make things easier, you might want someone to hold the mount so that there is a guarantee that the mount will not slip while performing this step.
After you have checked the position on the front of the mount, drill two holes from the existing hole pattern in the mount.
Once the drilling is done, secure the motor by using the two holes, then drill the remaining holes easily. The shaft and motorhead can be removed as well to make the drilling easier.
To secure the motor, one needs to fasten the nuts to the bolts. Ideally, you will have to reach the underside of the bow to achieve this step.
However, if one cannot reach the mounting platform’s base, it is recommended to use no-access bolts. These will allow you to adjust and tighten the motor effectively without reaching the underside of the mount.
Make sure that you use some of the strongest bolts to secure the motor so that there are no issues in the future.
Once the bolts are tightened successfully, securing the motor, the final step is to attach the plate panels back to the trolling motor, which you had removed in step two. After this step, the installation will be done.
These are some of the easiest steps to install a bow mount trolling motor on a fiberglass boat.
Perform all these steps carefully, and do not miss out on any of the steps, as it might hamper while steering the boat. But, if you are unsure about it, you can always take a professional’s guidance since it can be more tricky.