Cable Steer vs. Electric Steer Trolling Motors

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This topic contains 5 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Jerry Mona 1 week, 3 days ago.

  • Author
  • #45412

    Jerry Mona

    Many walleye and deep water anglers have gravitated to the newer electric steer trolling motors such as the Minn Kota PowerDrive or Ulterra or the MotorGuide Xi5. The ability to trace a route or hold a position using GPS coordinates are tremendous features that have changed the way that many now fish. It allows the angler to concentrate on fishing rather than operating the motor.

    However, bass anglers have largely remained with cable-steer models presumably because they are quiet and responsive – key features when fishing in shallow water. But, with the improvements in electric steer trolling motors in recent years, I am wondering how suitable these now are for bass anglers.

    If you have used an electric steer trolling motor, let us know what you think of it. What are the main advantages and disadvantages vs. the traditional cable steer?

  • #46224

    Rick Cargo

    After using my Friends trolling motor with the electronic steering, I will gladly keep on using my cable controlled steering.  We got to a couple of areas on Diamond Valley Lake that must have had some kind of radio frequencies in the air as the trolling motor would just start dancing around and running all by itself sometimes. It was always near the same areas. It never happen on other lakes.

    • #46234

      Jerry Mona

      Thanks for the feedback.  Yes that interference would make things a bit challenging and annoying.  I had not heard of that happening before but wonder if that is fairly common.  My neighbor has a newer model electric steer on his bass boat and seems to like it.  I must admit, the “spot lock” feature or whatever it is called would be very handy.

    • #50758

      Jerry Mona

      I just want to update my earlier comment now that I have had more experience with Electric Steer trolling motors (specifically, Minn Kota Ultrex).  I have fished a number of times in my  friend’s boat that has this trolling motor and it is awesome!  The Spot Lock feature is a game changer. One afternoon, he and I went fishing on a windy day in our respective boats (I have a conventional cable steer trolling motor).  We were fishing the same point but I had a very difficult time holding my boat position while trying to fish.  Meanwhile, Mark had his spot lock on and was standing on the back of his boat casting with the wind.  Because he was holding steady and could concentrate on fishing, he did far better than me that day.

      When my trolling motor eventually goes, I will definitely get an electric steer model.  For tournament anglers, I think it would be a major disadvantage to not have this technology.


  • #50701


    Need to lodge some engineering paperwork for my unreg 115… I has no idea on the month/year

    I have come across a few sites with info but none help pre 80s.


  • #50757

    Jerry Mona

    Hi Charles-

    I am not sure I can help but first help me to understand your question.  What does “lodge some engineering paperwork” mean and what brand is your 115?

    I do have some industry connections but it depends on exactly what you are looking for.



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