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Trolling Motor Integration How Important?

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Trolling Motor Integration How Important?

Old 05-14-2019, 07:37 AM
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Default Trolling Motor Integration How Important?

I've read all the post comparing brands of trolling motors and everybody seems to have their favorites.

My question is more towards how important is the ability to integrate the trolling motor with your electronics?

I've got all simrad electronics which would lead me to the MG XI5. What additional features would the integration give me vs. just going with a rhodan or MK?

I also realize a couple new trolling motors might be released soon, I will keep that in mind as well..

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Old 05-14-2019, 07:39 AM
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it is all bells and whistles with personal preference! to some its really nice to others its no big deal! will it help you catch more fish? probably not!

its all personal preference!
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Old 05-14-2019, 07:40 AM
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What is the "IT" you are referencing? What does the integration allow you to do vs. not having the motor integrated?
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Old 05-14-2019, 07:46 AM
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Originally Posted by wcharris14 View Post
What is the "IT" you are referencing? What does the integration allow you to do vs. not having the motor integrated?
the IT would be the trolling motor integrating into the gps/chart plotter, which is the question you asked!

it connects to your chart plotter, you can then pre program where you want it to take you. some will spot lock with out being connected and others need the chart plotter to spot lock.

i suggest you visit there website and read up on them!
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Old 05-14-2019, 08:04 AM
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I have had two GPS enabled trolling motors and neither were integrated to my chart plotter. On my last boat I thought about buying a lowrance chart plotter for my Xi5 but just never got around to doing it. In theory it would be nice to have your trolling motor lock on an existing waypoint from the chart plotter. And the ability to plot and follow a course looks nice. But at the end of the day I was always able to accomplish what I needed to without the integration so to me it wasn't worth the extra money.
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Old 05-14-2019, 08:16 AM
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Thanks Blake this was what I was looking for.
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Old 05-14-2019, 08:25 AM
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I have it and bought the Motorguide because of the integration with Simrad. Youíll gain a few things: follow a route from the MFD, anchor at waypoint anchor at cursor. Theyíve got all kinds of patterns/turns the MFD can trigger the Motorguide to do as well. I have not used those, yet.

The big thing for me is the routes from the MFD and anchor at cursor. I personally use anchor at cursor a good bit especially if weíre slowly working a whole bank. Setup fish for 15 minutes and move 100 yards down the bank by moving the cursor.

As for performance of the Xi5, Iíve got a Sea Hunt BX25 with the hard top. Itís got a pretty high bow for a bay boat, I think itís right at 35Ē to the waterline. We were out at the jetties Saturday in probably 1-2 footers with the occasional 3 foot roller coming thru after a large boat goes by. The 72Ē shaft never cavitated and held all day. Iíve got the dirt cheap Batteries Plus deep cycle group 24. We sat in anchor mode in 3 different spots for probably 6 hours Saturday with no issues. Wind was 10-15 MPH.

Over all I think itís a great product. Does what itís supposed to do and itís been pretty reliable.
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Old 05-14-2019, 08:28 AM
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Remember that the MG Xi5 doesn't have any LED screen on the remote to tell you what mode it's in. That can be annoying without the integration. I didn't have it on my last boat, but I am considering it on my new one.
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Old 05-14-2019, 08:33 AM
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Wen I started inshore fishing I would say buying the MK with spot lock was the single biggest thing that improved my results.
Reason was without it, I didnít have PP at the time, you have to anchor and is a PITA to keep bringing it in and throwing it out again at a new spot. His meant I spent longer in non productive spots.
With the MK you can set it to track a bank slowly, then hit spot lock if you get a bite or want o try a spot a little longer. You an save waypoints directly to the MK unit and the motor will take you there from I think about 1/4 mile away.
The advantage in linking it to your fish finder is you can have he MK follow a certain depth. When I looked at this I thought that that integration only worked with Hummingbird, but I could be wrong on that o possibly thy have added other products.
Good luck
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Old 05-14-2019, 08:46 AM
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With my Minn Kota linked o my Humminbird I can mark structure on side scan and navigate to it with the TM
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Old 05-14-2019, 09:17 AM
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It is definitely nice to have, but you can live without it

But I use it a lot between my Lowrance units and my Xi5. But one of the nicest things is being able to see the trolling motor status (anchor, heading lock, etc.) displayed on the Lowrance units.

Waypoint anchor we use all the time. Occasionally we use the follow route feature.

I have read that Minn Kota has a patent currently on the following a depth contour with a trolling motor, so that feature is only available in Hummingbird and Minn Kota iPilot Link connections.
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Old 05-14-2019, 09:52 AM
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the fresh water bass guys might take better advantage more than saltwater guys because the smaller lakes with grass beds etc they can plot a course around the areas and just cast all day. At least the way I use it in the NE back bay fishing I would never use the automation, it sounds cool but I would never use it. The most important feature with the new motors is wireless controls and spot lock. I have had 3 Riptides and 2 are Ulterra's with auto deploy and auto trim, that's the greatest feature for me.
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Old 05-14-2019, 10:03 AM
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I have Xi5 integrated with my Lowrance MFD's and it is the single best thing I've added to the boat.

Allows me to use chart/waypoint/sonar info to locate myself. So if I see fish on the graph I can touch the screen and autopilot to/anchor on that spot. If I'm working a shoreline for bass I can memorize the route and rerun it whenever I want to (which means I get to fish instead of futzing with the TM while the kids fish). If the route is interrupted while we catch a fish or clear a snag, i can pick up easily where I left off in the middle of the route using the MFD. This is important because I may have drifted past the next point in the route and will want to start with a different point than the one that was next in the route. I can see it all on the chart/MFD and sort it out quickly and get back to fishing.

With the integration I can have as many routes as I want. With the non-integrated TM it'll only retain 8 routes.

If the shoreline is straight or nearly so, I can use the chart to set a route to a cursor point by just touching the MFD screen where I want to go. We also do this when working big weedbeds etc where I just set an artificial drift at whatever speed I want and the TM slowly moves us over the area. I don't need to worry about wind or current.

I think all of this would be pretty hard or impossible if just using the remote. It's very easy with the MFD.

See structure on the finder that you want to fish? Touch it, tell it to go there and rig your pole while the TM puts you dead on the spot.

It's worth it for me. Offshore guys maybe not so much other than seeing the point on chart/fish on sonar and holding on it by touching the screen.

Last edited by JiminAZ; 05-14-2019 at 10:11 AM.
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Old 05-14-2019, 10:19 AM
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In both instances below, see fish, touch screen, catch fish.

First one with down and sidescan is catching bait. You can see the cursor where I touched and had the TM hold us there. Note that I touched the sidescan display, the corresponding cursor also shows up in the downscan window. And yes, it "knows" how far off to the side the target is. All I had to do was touch "go to cursor" on the menu on the right and we were in business.

Second one is catching stripers. I touched the sonar screen, and the point appeared just behind the boat on the chart. Take me there and let's get fishing.

(PS anyone wanting to steal my numbers go ahead, those stripers are somewhere different every day).




Last edited by JiminAZ; 05-14-2019 at 10:25 AM.
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