just recently signed up to this site and first up should say thank you for the great info provided!
I have a 12 foot tinnie (with a 6hp and electric motor) that has been decked out for freshwater estuary fishing and need some advice on what it would take to make the tinnie suitable for fishing in the broadwater/seaway. obviously i would be looking at a larger motor..
i would be most appreciative for any advice and if anyone would be happy to share their boat setup with us that would be great.
Ultimately how you set up your boat depends on you and how you want to fish the seaway. There is no best design or layout.
I do recommend a floor of some description as being able to stand up and move around without falling over helps alot but is not absolutely necessary.
Good fixed trolling rod holders are recommended if you want to do some trolling, and by good I don’t mean those plastic rotatable ones you buy in the boat stores(they will snap if a big enough fish hits the lure).
I personally don’t like vertical rod holders to hold spare rods as they will get in the way when you want to cast at a school of surface feeding fish, I use horizontal rod holders and it enables me to use a 360 degree casting area. The more accurate your casting the more fish you will catch.
Another thing I recommend if you intend on fishing the outer ends of the walls(12ft tinnies can do this easily..with care) is a water separating fuel filter, it will remove any chance of the motor cutting out due to dirty fuel, and believe me thats the last thing you want when the wind is coming from the south.
Most of the guys who use 12ft tinnies in the seaway use 15hp outboards to give them some top end speed to chase surface feeders, but 6hp is fine if you just want to fish plastics on the bottom or fish the pipeline.
I don’t use an electric as it slows down your reaction time, but sometimes they can be useful if the fish are holding in one area.
Before you start messing around with your boat try a few trips in the seaway without changing anything, if you haven’t fished it before it will take a while before you get the confidence to try every aspect and along the way you can make modifications to your boat if something needs improving. I’m still making changes to my boat 7 years after I bought it.
Ive been there done that in 3.55 tinnie with a six on it and not for the fact that I ever felt threatened or scared but i up sized to 4.75 centre console just for when I want to go out side I can with no hesitation.
The 3.55 was a very skinny designed boat so walking around was like walking on a tight rope, and really busy days in the seaway was like being in a washing machine…
Once I put the floor in it, it made it a little more user friendly and an area for storage underneath.
I wouldn’t have put a 15hp on that one but if you have the wider bodied model a 15hp is the go..
The more time you spend in your boat the more you’ll get to know what it will and wont do and in what conditions.
As Craig said, ive had my big tinnie for 18months and this afternoon I was out there changing a few thing around, just creature comforts..
If I may, ive just got onto this facebook page that is all about tinnies and different mods that people have done to theirs. pretty good site.
I have pretty limited boating experience -having not really grown up boating I have only the experience of the boats I have owned. 1st was a 10ft/10hp tinnie then traded up to a 12ft/18hp and now have a 14ft/40hp. I would recommend a boat that you feel comfortable in on the ROUGHER days rather than banking on the weather being perfect. There’s plenty of great skippers on this site who can probably man a 10 or 12ft tinnie at the end of the walls on a rough day, but unless you are great at the helm in the rough while casting/fighting a fish then its something to consider! I know personally I wouldn’t feel comfortable in much less than my 14ft plate tinnie – but its personal preference.
Like Craig said, I would say get out there and do a few trips in a variety of weather (that you’re comfortable with) and go from there. Maybe the few grand on a new motor might go towards a bigger boat…any excuse hey! Tim