Canoes come with a series of benefits. Apart from being available in all kinds of shapes, sizes and colors, they also allow fitting a series of attachments. From this point of view, their functionality has skyrocketed lately. They are no longer about paddling for entertainment and weekend chills, but they can become multifunction boats with lots of capabilities.
The general perception of a canoe is a bit old fashioned. When you think of one, you inevitably think of a long narrow boat with a few paddles and room for one or two people. You might be surprised to find out that canoes today can easily be turned into motor boats without even making a huge investment. You can find small motors to fit on a canoe, yet you have to dig a bit deeper than that.
When looking for a motor, most people overlook the actual fitting. Basically, they get the motor and expect it to come with a mounting mechanism, yet you will have to buy that separately. While the motor is clearly more important than the mount in terms of considerations and buying attention, the mount is not to be overlooked either.
Finding the best canoe motor mount can be a bit challenging because most people assume it is just a mount. However, there are many aspects to pay attention to when buying or you risk your motor falling underwater when you least expect it. So, what do you need to know before spending your money?
- 1 Benefits of Using a Canoe Motor Mount
- 2 How Canoe Motor Mounts Work
- 3 Top 5 Best Canoe Motor Mounts
- 4 What to Look for in the Best Canoe Motor Mount
- 5 Conclusion
- 6 Frequently Asked Questions
Benefits of Using a Canoe Motor Mount
A canoe motor mount is an actual necessity if you want to take your basic canoe to the next level and give it some of the flexibility of a motor boat.
More Distance Covered
No matter what you use the canoe for, finding the best motor mount for canoe will provide access to a motor and the possibility to cover greater distances. When you paddle, your options are a bit limited. No matter what kind of fitness condition you have, chances are you will feel tired after a while, so you will need breaks. If you can easily cover a few miles by paddling, having a motor will give you access to ten times more in just as much time.
Obviously, it depends on the motor you choose, but you will notice the difference right away.
When you use a canoe for transportation or you need to get somewhere else in a rush, paddling feels like forever. Even if you use it to fish, there will be times when the fish will not cooperate, so you will have to move to a different location. It might take time, hence the necessity of a motor. Fit it with the top canoe motor mount on the market and you can do it within minutes.
The speed depends on the motor, but generally, you can easily do up to 10 times more with a good motor, so transportation by canoe will no longer be a problem.
Peace of Mind
The best canoe motor mount will give you the peace of mind that your motor is safe and less likely to drop, hence the necessity of quality. Moreover, this is the bridge between a basic canoe and a motor boat, so it makes a good investment.
How Canoe Motor Mounts Work
Canoe motor mounts are basic tools that make the connection between a new canoe and a motor. If you have used other mounts before, the operating principles are similar. They attach to the main thing – in this case, a canoe – and support the attachment. They can be attached in multiple ways. However, when it comes to powerful motors, most attachments are based on powerful screws or clamps to keep motors in the same position. It is a matter of health and safety. A poor quality attachment will go loose and can snap, having your motor go underwater.
The good news is that the best canoe motor mount is adjustable. Most of them are. In other words, you do not have to find something specific for your canoe and motor, but a general unit that can work with both of them. At the same time, materials are supposed to be solid and strong to support the motor power.
These are the reasons wherefore you still need to conduct some research, regardless of the motor mount. You do not want to take any risks when the price to pay can be so high.
Top 5 Best Canoe Motor Mounts
Going with a top rated unit is the best way to ensure high quality.
Old Town Standard Canoe Motor Mount
Old Town’s standard model could be the best canoe motor mount if you want value for money. It might be a bit more expensive than other units in this segment, but the quality is flawless. Moreover, it comes from the world’s oldest manufacturer of canoes, so those people surely know what they are doing.
The mount is entirely made heavy duty aluminum. It will not add too much weight to your canoe, but it will be sturdy and strong. It can take both electric and gas based engines. The maximum recommended power is 3HP.
The mount is reversible, which means it will accommodate both left and right handed people. Installing it does not require any experience. Just hand tighten the mount to your canoe – look for the gunwales. The grip must be sturdy and solid – you do not have to use a wrench.
Altogether, it weighs about 6.4 pounds. You will be able to install it without too much hassle – all by yourself.
- Heavy duty build
- Good value for money
- Easy to install
- Reversible system
- Not wide enough for all 3HP engines
- Might seem fragile under the motor torque
Old Town Side-Saddle Canoe Motor Mount
Old Town’s side-saddle best canoe motor mount is excellent for those who want durability and flexibility. It is made of heavy duty aluminum – a standard material for Old Town’s mounts. It will never rust, but maintain its strength and flexibility overtime.
The mount is so solid that it can take most 3HP engines, whether they are gas or electric. You can cruise to the right fishing spot within minutes only – forget about paddling and losing all your energy before you even start fishing.
The mount goes on the side. In other words, the motor will be easy to operate and run while still looking forward. It is excellent for both left and right handed people, yet it is worth noting that it cannot go on wood trimmed canoes.
Installing it is a piece of cake – a hardwood block brings in a safe mounting surface for electric engines. No experience is required.
- Simple to install
- Easy to run the boat
- Rust free and durable
- Can take most 3HP engines
- Solid mounting mechanism
- Not good for all 3HP engines, so double check
- Not suitable to wood trimmed canoes
AquaOutdoors Canoe Trolling Motor Mount Bracket
The best mount for fishing canoe with motor from AquaOutdoors might look simple and basic, but this is exactly what you need. You want a sturdy mount that will support the motor, rather than fancy and good looking fragile alternatives.
The unit is quite rugged and looks like it. It is a heavy duty model able to take a good beating, lots of pressure and torque. It is entirely made from 6061 aluminum. It is rust free and less likely to bend, despite being flexible.
A crossbar measuring 3 inches in width will minimize the vibration and add to the stability. It also reduces the risks of breaking, which would result in losing your motor. As for the overall size, a full 28 inch design will not interfere with your steering movements.
As a general rule of thumb, the mount will take engines up to 4HP – both electric and gas. It is made in the USA, so it has to bypass the strict local regulations – no doubts about its quality.
- Durable design
- Flexible material
- Close to no vibration
- Can take 4HP motors
- Rugged design
- Not suitable to absolutely all 4HP motors
Sailboats To Go Canoe Motor Mount
Sailboats To Go has probably designed the best canoe motor mount if you want quality materials and no risks at all. The unit is based on two elements – aluminum (anodized) and stainless steel. Strength is flawless, while corrosion will never kick in.
The mount is longer than other units in this segment. With 36 inches, you can also mount it on wide canoes. It is stiff and less likely to vibrate, regardless of the motor power. The torque and pressure might cause slight movements, but the aluminum flexibility will take everything over.
The bar is built as a box section. It features a couple of internal strengthening ribs. They measure 2 7/8×1 3/16 inches, so they are quite strong for the overall size of the mount.
Furthermore, the gunwale clamp threads are made of stainless steel. This is where you want to keep corrosion away from, as it represents one of the most common problems in these parts.
- Wider than average
- Aluminum and stainless steel design
- Easy to maintain
- Simple installation
- Close to no vibration
- Big, but not strong enough to take motor bigger than 4HP
- Rugged looks
Sailboats To Go Side-Saddle Canoe Motor Mount for Old Town Canoes
If you are looking for a side saddle unit, this model from Sailboats might be the best mount for motorized canoe for you. You can mount it on any side of the canoe. It is mostly designed for Old Town canoes, yet it can go on other models as well. There is one requirement though – vinyl gunwales are needed for proper mounting. It does not work with metallic gunwales.
The build leaves your cockpit open, as there is no need to get cluttered up with a crossbar. Although it looks less stable, it is not. In fact, it will also reduce vibrations.
Being mountable on any side makes it suitable to both left and right handed people. You can now control the canoe while still looking forward.
The canoe motor mount is compact and lightweight, yet it can take motors up to 3HP. The sturdy design ensures a stable operation under pressure and torque from the motor.
- Durable design
- Plenty of room left
- Easy to install
- Suitable to both left and right handed people
- Feels a bit fragile
- Not compatible with most other brands but Old Town
What to Look for in the Best Canoe Motor Mount
Just like for pretty much everything in life, you will have to do your homework when hunting the best canoe motor mount. There are certain things to pay attention to or you might end up with a bunch of unexpected situations.
As a general rule of thumb, most canoe motor mounts are adjustable. An adjustable model might be your best bet because you only need to check a few measurements. Double check the width of your canoe if the mount comes with a crossbar. This kind of system reduces vibrations and adds to the stability, as the unit is mounted in two different places.
Adjustability is not such a big deal when you opt for a side saddle canoe, yet it is still important to make sure it can be attached to your canoe.
Given the high adjustability, the most mounts can fit most canoes. This rule applies to most units, yet you will run into plenty of exceptions too, hence the importance of double checking the specifications. For example, some units can be fitted on vinyl gunwales only. Some others can take anything but metallic gunwales.
You will also find mounts that are suitable to specific models only, as well as certain brands. Have the canoe brand and model in mind if you find something that can match your needs but is only compatible with particular models.
When it comes to such limitations, most manufacturers mention compatibility issues and sizing standards.
Assuming that you already have the motor or you know what you will get, make sure the mount is compatible with it as well and not just the canoe. There are not too many situations of incompatibility, yet there is a small chance the motor will not match the mount. From this point of view, it is still worth taking a minute to make sure that you can get the whole system together or you will waste your time and money.
Materials vary widely, yet one of them dominates the industry. The best canoe motor mount should be made of aluminum and not just any kind of aluminum, but heavy duty. Aluminum is rust free and can resist corrosion if properly looked after. Moreover, it is a bit flexible, so it can take some pressure from the motor torque without causing any problems.
Some of the best manufacturers out there also bring in stainless steel for certain parts – another great idea because stainless steel carries similar properties. If you can find a mix of aluminum and stainless steel, you know your mount is going to last.
What is the maximum power the mount can take? Some motors can bring in 2HP, while others may go up to 4HP. The more powerful the motor is, the more torque it will bring in. Most canoe motor mounts are rated to a certain capacity. Given the fact that many motors needed for canoes can put out about 3HP or 4HP, this is usually the main recommendation for mounts. It is still important to check this aspect upfront though.
If the motor is too powerful for the mount capabilities, chances are it will break the mount and go sinking. It is a terrible waste of money that can be prevented with proper research.
The best canoe motor mount for someone is not necessarily the best mount for everyone else. Mounts are usually available in two types and each of them has its pros and cons. The classic model is more stable and comes with a crossbar covering the canoe. Since it is fitted on both sides, it is obviously quite stable. However, it limits the movement in the cockpit a little.
The side saddle model goes on one side. You can mount it on any side you want. It gives you more freedom, but since it is attached on one side only, it does not feel as stable as the crossbar design. Moreover, without a crossbar, the weight is not distributed towards the other side either, so controlling the canoe will be a bit challenging.
Deciding on the right model is a matter of personal preferences. Both types work just as well and each of them has slight pros and cons, so choose whatever is better for you.
As a short final conclusion, deciding on the best canoe motor mount can be a little challenging. Most of them seem to be almost identical. Small aspects make the difference though. Pay attention to sizing standards, compatibility and small details that can make one model more suitable to you than another.
On the same note, you will have to make this choice with your personal needs and expectations in mind. While finding the best trolling motor mount for your canoe is, indeed, important, it is not more important than your canoe or the motor, as these things are more expensive. In other words, make sure the mount is compatible with them and not the other way around. The mount should be the last thing to purchase in order to set this system up.
Double check all the specifications of your motor and canoe before making sure they match the mount. Once you have everything done, opt for a product that you can install yourself without too much hassle. It is essential to go with a well rated product. After all, when so many people recommend it, there is definitely something good about it.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which type is better – crossbar or side saddle?
It is entirely up to you to decide which one you want more based on their pros and cons. Crossbar mounts have stability but limit the available space and vice versa. Think about which one is more important for you – stability or space – and you will have the right answer.
In terms of popularity, both types are quite popular and they share a fair amount of fans.
Should I take the mount off when not in use?
Again, this is entirely up to you. Also, it depends on the mounting mechanism. If you get a mount based on screws, taking them on and off will most likely cause the mount to go loose. In this case, you should just leave everything as it is.
Most experts recommend leaving the motor mount on even if it features another mounting mechanism. Just like with everything else in life – going on and off will wear it down, but it may also damage the canoe.
How should I look after the mount?
The best canoe motor mount for you is less likely to require too much maintenance. Unless you buy the cheapest thing you can find, you should have enough aluminum and stainless steel in its composition. Such materials will maintain their integrity overtime. However, just like your canoe, the mount should not really be left in severe weather conditions, such as constant rain.
What should I pay more attention to – the motor weight or the motor power? The motor power is more important because the mount will face more pressure under torque. This is also the main reason wherefore most mounts come with motor power specifications. You know precisely what the maximum power is, while the weight is usually directly proportional with it anyway, so it is less likely to affect you too much.