I have a Minnkota Endura 30lb. thrust for 15 years and still going strong.
My new fishing spot is 3 miles one way (straight shot) and a lot of winding around and fishing on the way. Sometimes I run to this spot and back twice during the day.
I recently bought a Minnkota Traxxis 45 lb. thrust , w/digital maximize and have extended my range greatly. I did notice the bracket at point of contact with the transom start to spread as I tightened it down. The metal cups were sliding on the transom and was solved by placing a computer mouse pad on the transom. The 30lb. would wimp out in a high wind, no problem with the Traxxis 45.
The Wal-Mart batteries are good just make sure you get the most reserve amps you can. I was surprised in the group 24 at Wal-mart the most reserve amps I found was 100 so I bought a 140 reserve amps, group 24 from AutoZone for about $10.00 more.
I use a Schumacher XCS15 battery charger from Wal-Mart.
If on a tight budget the Minnkota Endura 30lb. thrust will do. To trim my canoe I put a spare battery in the bow and donít worry about running out of juice.
Keep the open side up :~)
Classic Freestanding Rack
Overstock Outlet Foods
Touring Kayak Paddles
YakCatcher Rod Holder
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