I quite like pottering slowly. In fact moving slowly is something I'd like to learn to do more frequently. I'd also like to learn how to relax and not feel guilty about not achieving stuff, and not getting things done. Learning to sit still is one of my ambitions. Maybe one day, I'll even sit still long enough to get some line on my rod and fling the hook into some water. And wiggle it about...or whatever it is that people do when they fish.
So this Minn Kota mutation is not about hoping to move fast, but to make the two ends of a sailing trip more beautiful and peaceful. But I don't want an ugly plastic thing hanging off the end of the boat, so I'll stash it under the seat in a way that enables me to replace it with a flat hull plug when I don't need it- but maybe it will let me explore some quiet water with my one true love in peace and quiet, perhaps with a glass of something appropriate to the moment. I do believe in moments. They are one of the few things that I can believe in. And glasses. I believe in the power of a glass to expand the intensity of a moment. But not too many glasses- that is the secret, knowing which glass is the last for the moment.
More mundanely, it will also be a pleasure to be able to re-charge the batteries with home made solar electricity.
So I took courage in both hands and cut the head off a brand new Minn Kota 55lb thrust motor and have frankensteined it to a wooden fairing that will hang from a hole cut in the perfectly waterproof bottom of the boat that still hasn't met the water. The head is lying in absolute disbelief on my workbench since its decapitation. Who said the French Revolution was over? The aristocrat of electric outboards has been cleaved, beheaded, bisected, poleaxed. I cut it off, and it was a pity that my wife was not there to knit and chuckle heartily at the event.
The other complication is that these motors have speed reduction achieved through resistance, apparently. I needed to prove to it that there was no point resisting, so I've found some gadgetry from radio-controlled cars that will provide a more efficient method of controlling speed and direction, and thereby make the battery more efficient. I didn't discover this though. The real inventor was Denny Wolfe- he did this to his Arctic Tern and wrote about it on the Woodenboat Forum. I did draw my pod design a couple of years ago for the Waller 540 I built, but I never had the courage to carry it through until I saw that he had taken a very similar idea, but he KNEW WHAT HE WAS DOING...(despite that I still found it hard to cut the motor in half)