Battery for trolling motor
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Posted on Sunday May 13, 2012 at 3:02 PM  
I lucked into a two man scamp with a 40 pound trust trolling motor and I need some advice. This is my first boat and I have no idea what I am supposed to be looking for in a marine battery. I have looked online and have found some as cheap as $75 all the way up to $300+. I received the boat and trolling motor for free so I don't have a problem with buying an expensive battery if it is what I need but if I can pick one up for $75 I would rather save the money. Will the more expensive batteries be overkill for my little trolling motor? How long can I expect the battery to last before it gets drained and I get stranded out on the water? How many cranking amps do I need? How can I charge it after I use it? Again, I know nothing about this so any advice you can offer a rookie is appreciated.
Posted on Monday May 14, 2012 at 3:03 AM  
You are thinking right on the cranking amps- more is better but also need to think of how long are you wanting to stay out on the water?how good is that 40 pound trolling motor and how much weight including yourself and total tackle it will be laboring against?The trolling motor I assume is a 12 volt and can be re-charged with any 12 volt automobile charger from wallie world,k-mart,sears,etc. Borrow a battery from a friend or use your truck battery to test it out. If it works-buy the best you can afford and have fun. Beware of leaks,wear life jacket, stay close to shore, only use in ponds and small creeks and take a ore with you.READ REGULATIONS on where you can use the scamp.
Posted on Monday May 14, 2012 at 7:29 AM  
Keep that puppy charged up, as soon as you get home from a trip put the charger on, do not wait until the next day, or let that battery sit for days while ran down. A battery should last for a few years...check the water level now and then, and keep it charged, put the charger on it now and then through the winter, and during periods when not in use for weeks at a time.
Posted on Monday May 14, 2012 at 8:51 AM  
In my opinion those high-dollar gel cell batteries would be a waste of money for your scamp. Just a good quality wet cell design will be fine for you or if you want to splurge, go with an AGM battery like an Optima. The gel cell is a decent choice for bigger boats that take a beating going across the water. The AGM will hold up to a little vibration better than a wet cell, but I think the main advantage for the AGM would be that they won't sulfate or degrade as fast as a standard wet cell if they sit for an extended period of time. If you stay on top of the maintenance by using and/or charging periodically, the wet cell will work fine and you'll save some money.

How long a battery will last will depend on several variables. A typical 40 pound thrust trolling motor is going to draw around 35-40 amps at full power. I wouldn't expect most batteries to run more than three hours at full power. You can extend that if you don't use it constantly and/or use it on lower speeds. I'd stay fairly close to your take-out spot or at least up-wind until you get a feel for how long yours is going to last. When I had my two-man boat, I'd often put two batteris in it if I planned to be out all day. Just be careful not to overload your boat with too much weight...
Posted on Monday May 14, 2012 at 4:44 PM  
Thanks for the help.
Posted on Monday May 14, 2012 at 4:58 PM  
Chops, perfect place to test that thing out is Pretty Water. No gas engines allowed. Gotta buy the fishing permit, though.
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