Minn Kota Riptide SP Saltwater Trolling Motors
I love the concept of the Riptide Autopilot, remote.
Like a previous review, I had problems.
Deployment/retrieval (I am 6'3" 250 lbs, former football player)
On my third remote. On my third autopilot module. On my second metal frame and it also has rusted out, another on order (I rinse the motor daily). The beeper has been replaced along with a lot of other stuff. The latch failed at speed and the shaft broke, prop broke and did damage to my expensive craft. The motor itself is rusting where the shaft enters and where it stows. Look like ----. It has been in the shop at least 6 times, but who is counting.
The good part. It is still under warranty, this all has happened 18 months into it. The shaft was replaced free of charge, but not the prop or the damage to my boat when the latch failed. Everyone I know has had this happen, such that they use bungees to secure it.
So this is a love hate relationship. Love it when its on the boat working, hate it when I have to drive 100 miles to the shop, pick up when the parts finally get in.
July 16, 2010
At first I didn't know if I was going to like the remote steering, but I have now changed my mind, I love it. Pros: lots of power, long battery life. Cons: a little play in the shaft and steering. That is why I gave it a 4 instead of a 5.
March 20, 2010
Great idea poor implementation for fishing
I installed a Minn Kota 70 ft-lb 24 volt motor on my C-skiff and I want to make a few remarks about it.
First the good:
1. This trolling motor generates a lot of power and basically pulls my skiff through all but the thickest grass making it easy for me to get into areas I didn't like to venture in a bass boat.
2. Installation and set-up were easy.
Now the bad (again IMHO)
1. The hand control that comes with the trolling motor works but it's easy to misplace and the idea of attaching it to a fishing rod must have been conceived by some one who never fishes. I simply can't think of any time (saltwater or freshwater) that I use one rod.
2. The idea of remote control from anywhere on the boat is good but it is difficult to tell where the motor is pointed.
3. The foot control (I'm using the corded model) helps a lot but I'm already having problems with mine (the power switch is getting inconsistent -- it seems only one side of it is working now to turn the motor on) and I've only had it since Feb.
4. The electronic steering is way to fast to be practical. I have had multiple times where I have a fish on and I accidently hit the foot pedal causing the boat to go way off course. This was really a pain when I was fighting a big wind to stay off the rocks and catching fish. A little to much pressure of the foot and suddenly the boat is traveling 180 degrees in the wrong direction! Even when your not fighting a fish steering a staight course with the foot pedal is difficult for my size 12 feet!
5. The Deploy-Assist Lever that is designed to take the effort out of deploying the motor doesn't. At best the deployment of this motor (putting it down) is clumsy and bringing it up is even worse. (Next trolling motor I want my hand cord deployment back!)
6. The motor retention latch has failed multiple times, both on the water and off the water. Last time it failed on the water at about 35 mph -- when the motor hit the water the force of the boat ripped off my transducer.
Over all I really like Minn Kota's product line but I think they need to improve the steering and deployment system on the SP. I noticed the freshwater model looks exactly the same (except color) but I assume doesn't have the same corrosion protection.
I just got a Big-Foot hand control from BassPro that I think is going to solve the steering problem, but I can't help but feel that I paid a lot of extra money for an electronic steering system that doesn't suit my style of fishing.
July 21, 2008
Now I've got a Robo-Boat!
The Riptide is a great trolling motor! I've used many others before - including MotorGuide and some others, but some features of the Riptide stand out. The Autopilot feature is great - better than the MotorGuide version - and has very good range. I sometimes get off the boat at a crowded dock and then move the boat away with the little remote. When I'm ready to get back in, just have the boat steer back to you - cool... The internal compass works well also, keeping the boat pointed in the right direction when wind or current changes. Last thing is the plastic staft - I've run up on some things that would have bent a metal shaft (my boat needs a 60" shaft length so weight is also an issue) the plastic shaft bows, but does not permanently bend and doesn't break. One hint - make sure you have BIG stainless washers on the backing side of the mount - these things can put at lot of stress on the bolts and mount.
May 15, 2008