Trim Tabs or pods or neither.

General boating discussion
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Trim Tabs or pods or neither.


Post by LakeSurfer »

Hello all,

this is my first post regarding my first boat and I'm looking for a little advice. I was recently gifted a Mirrocraft 16ft aluminum semi v hull with a 15hp mercury tiller 4 stroke. over the last few months I been getting comfortable taking it out on the Florida gulf. Im to the point now where im noticing things that i don't quite like and would really like to see about a solution.

first I'm much heavier than id like to be at 230lbs. the fuel tank is in the stern and the battery is maybe 4 feet in front of the stern. 98% of the time im going out into shallow water fishing by myself. its not the ideal boat for what i do but its sentimental and its not going anywhere anytime soon. my problem is with all the weight in the back it does take time to plane but it really only planes at 3/4 to wide open throttle. I don't want to move the battery forward because the gulf gets choppy with no waring and id prefer to not have it bouncing around at the stern and the same goes for the fuel tank.

Ive read a lot of good about both the float pods and Trim tabs but every 3rd or so thing I read says that it would be a waste of time and money for me to install either of them on such a small boat with such a small motor. so Im here to get some actual aluminum boater opinions.

with calm water and no wind Im able to hit 21 MPH with only myself and maybe 50lbs of gear. Im not to worried about improving top speed or even decreasing it to much if I can find a way to plane better at lower speeds. Some of my favorite spots are fairly shallow depending on the tide and are about a mile or so to get into. right now i either have to get a running start and up on plane at WOT to get there which is dangerous or troll all the way there, which takes a lot of battery power. That being said i wonder as well if a manual crank Jack plate would be a good idea too or would the weight be to much for the supposed benefits?

any way I understand trim tabs and pods have different purposes but would either one help me with what im looking for?

I appreciate the knowledge and assistance.


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Re: Trim Tabs or pods or neither.


Post by Trousertrout »

The only boat I ever put pods on was a tracker 1542. I set it up as a mud boat so I wanted it as shallow as possible. I installed a heavy long tail mud motor on it. I welded the pods on. They definitely worked as advertised. Only issue is vegetation and logs sometimes knocked the plug out of the pods. Another downfall is you will have little to no reverse
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Re: Trim Tabs or pods or neither.


Post by kmorin »

Welcome to the Forum, glad you dropped by, and I hope someone here has some help for your questions?

My first remark is that any boat is only as seaworthy as the Skipper and if you're going into salt water in a 16' skiff- where your description of the weather is true?? then you might want to look into a little more LOA and some free board!! In our area people do go offshore in little skiffs but I personally prefer a 20' LOA, 60" (chine to chine) w 30" sides (chine to shear) as minimum for my overly high-displacement stern (keister) to venture out into the salt- butt then I'm old too.

With that said, I'd say you might rely on Dawson, has done more mod.s to the class of boat you're discussing than the average shop in your (general) area. So I think contacting him for both design advice and potential effects to your hull from different modifications is a good course to follow.

In general the 'pods' will give more planing surface area, longer water line length, more reserve flotation aft and increase your over displacement. So they'd be much more desirable to deal with a chop (increasing free boat a bit) and make planing faster (less draught for a given displacement) and the longer surfaces aft your engine will work as 'trim planes' because the squat is reduced with planing surface aft the wheel; than installing trim tabs - regardless if they're planes or knife type.

Hope you find some answers? Please don't hesitate to post your increased knowledge when you acquire it, and the we'd all enjoy images of the results of your project.

Kevin Morin
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Re: Trim Tabs or pods or neither.


Post by Chaps »

80lbs of lead weight up in the bow would make a difference and be easy to do
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Re: Trim Tabs or pods or neither.


Post by gandrfab »

I had a 26' cuddy cabin without trim tabs and relocating a 110 quart cooler from port side deck just behind the cuddy bulked to centerline just in front of the cuddy bulked made a noticeable difference in ride and time to plane.
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Re: Trim Tabs or pods or neither.


Post by clambo »

Try looking at a Doal Fin. Goes on your motor for more lift
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Re: Trim Tabs or pods or neither.


Post by clambo »

oops spelled Doel Fin
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