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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 15.5 foot roughneck boat with a Jet 30 motor. I haven't been out very much as of yet.

I would like to have my boat better suited for the Manistee River, and I'm hoping for some ideas to make operations easier.

1) Anchor Setup: Presently I have an Anchormate spooled next to me on the drivers bench. This feeds through a pulley or 2 up to the front in which I have an anchor roller mount which holds the anchor. I have a 10 pound bell type anchor. My limited experience on the river is that the Anchormate is a royal pain to wind up, if I didn't have someone up front it would have been a lot of fun breaking this loose and ducking brush on my way back to the steering wheel. What I am most interested in at this point is having an anchor rope secured by a cleat and having the anchor line attach to a section of heavy chain. This would hopefully allow for a quicker release which could be managed from the drivers bench. I have a couple questions in this regard; What size and type of rope would handle the heavier chain? Is there a good way of gaining a mechanical advantage when breaking free the anchor? I would love to upgrade to an automatic retrieval but the cost would be prohibitive.

2) Trolling Motor: I am wondering whether a trolling motor would be useful in situations such as moving closer to a good spot, or guiding my way back downstream. If this would be useful where would the optimal placement of this be on my boat for river operation? I don't have a front seat, but I do have a fairly large raised deck which could take on a new seat. There might be a disadvantage of a trolling motor near the bow, because I'm anticipating my anchor would be controlled at the stern.

I would really like to be able to control my boat without a lot of jumping around or back strain, I'd appreciate what your ideas might be.
 

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HI
I have a Min Cota Electric anchor system and while its not perfect it sure reinforced my wanting an electric system now I can operate from the drivers seat the biggest drawback with the Min Cota is that I can't see the rope and if I pay it out to fast I get tangles and snarls in my rope, when I wear it out the replacement will be easier to see.

On my old boat I used an Anchormate but I used it like a capstan by taking two wraps around it while my fishing partner tended the excess line. It worked easier than it sounds I just tied off to a cleat.

I hope some of this is helpful.
Otis
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi Otis,

Thank you for sharing your experience with anchoring systems.

I actually hadn't heard about the Minn Kota anchor system until you mentioned this to me. The price for this would definitely be right. I am curious about a couple things.
1) Would this be operated from the bow? The pictures I've seen online seem to show it this way.
2) Does this hold up well in the river environment? I've read forum replies that seem to suggest that any electric system less than "River Larry's" would not be adaquate.

I may be leaning towards a manual anchor solution, but I'll keep an open mind about things.
 

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If you have the money to pay for a trolling motor you would be MUCH better off puttting that money towards a electric anchor.
The #1 best improvment for a river boat is a electric anchor.

I don't have any experience with the mincota anchor system. I have used a powerwinch brand for 20 years on my boat. It is rated for 20-25 lb's. I have used various 30-40lb's. anchors for 20 years with the only problem being that when the boat is bouncing the clutch is not strong enough to hold a heavy anchor. Also the lighter the anchor the more anchor line you will need to pay out.

Whatever you do keep in mind that your boat will be underpowered once you add another battery, elect. motor, electric anchor and a anchor heavy enough to hold(min.of 30lb. the heavier the better), a friend or two...
 

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I run a 17' Lowe w/ a 60/40 Johnson Jet on the Muskegon from November until the end of the Spring run. I have a 24 volt River Larry wench that has worked flawlessly for 4 seasons. They are the most reliable and quietest wench's on the river. Plus, Larry lives right on the river and is quite accessable if you need any type of repairs to your wench or sled.

He is a very fair and great old river man no matter what anyone say's!!

River Larry (231)632-7364 :fish:
 

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.
1) Would this be operated from the bow? The pictures I've seen online seem to show it this way.
2) Does this hold up well in the river environment? I've read forum replies that seem to suggest that any electric system less than "River Larry's" would not be adaquate.


My Minn-Kota system is rated for a #40 anchor but seems underpowered to me with a #30 anchor.
There is one switch that I have mounted on the dash, but a second switch near the system would be welcome for one man operation while I'm setting up to go out. I remove the anchor when trailering.


Otis
 

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I hang an 86lb. pyramid anchor from my River Larry Wench with no problem, during high flow on the MO 5,00CFS I usually add15 -30 extra lbs. of chain to my pyramid. The wench still has plenty of muscle and speed! Larry say's it will lift 150 lbs of anchor? I wouldn't want to be in the water necessary for that much hook though!

:fish:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I'm glad that I submitted my question to the group here. It does appear that I should rethink my idea of setting up a manual operated anchor system.

I do have some money to spend on my setup. I just want to be in the hundreds, not in excess of a thousand. My original thought was to stay within my budget and pick up a fairly powerful trolling motor and also get a cheap but hopefully effective manual anchor system.

The main thing to me is to have the river experience to where you aren't constantly fighting problems, and can focus more on the fishing. Perhaps I should wait on my trolling motor.

I have contacted River Larry and hope to hear back from him. Perhaps this will be too expensive, but if it isn't I'd be very happy to get a system that I can count on for many years.

What I hate doing is going cheap in the wrong area, and having to spend the extra money anyways.

If River Larry's is too expensive it sounds as if I wouldn't go too wrong by looking at the Minn Kota or Powerwinch.

Do any of you consider a trolling motor as a irreplaceable accessory to your prop boat or jet sled (as in river useage)? I was thinking that this might be useful in quietly sneaking up to a fishing spot on the way downstream.
 

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The elect.trolling motor and battery will be in your way and it will add unnessasary weight. I remove mine from nov. thru mayish.
You can spend the big $ on a heavy duty unit that you will love. Or about 200$ on a powerwinch which you will like alot, but wish you had the "Larry type", especially during high water. The minncota/powerwinch will be very frustrating during high water flows, they cannot lift the amount of weight you will need.
Also the more weight you use the less chance your anchor will drag into a snag and then end up in my anchor pile.
Anchors are expensive unless your a diver.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I will take your recommendations and put my emphasis on getting a good automatic winch. We'll just put the trolling motor idea on hold.

I talked with River Larry this evening. The sticker shock is a bit much but I'd really like to go this route.

As suggested above he doesn't only specialize in anchor rigging, he also works with outboards, and other boat renovating projects. He sounds to be a very detail oriented person.

He told me that I would only need the 12 volt setup.

With his system he will place a switch at the anchor, and another at the console.

I wonder if my anchormate will work on my canoe. :)

I appreciate everyone's imput!
 
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