Its getting close to that time of year where building, modifying, and updating bowfishing boats starts happening.
Here is a photo of my 14' x 48" alumicraft jon boat with 4 300 watt flood lights for night fishing. I have a long shaft trolling motor but where I bow fish at night it is super mossy and the troller won't go more than 10 foot before getting 50 pounds of moss wound around it. I wish I could post a pic of my boat but do not do the photo bucket thing but have a few mods to do this year on it and will be getting started with than soon. Rob, I like how you hung your lights to the rail with brackets and still used a pipe to the floor for stability and to clean up the wires. I mostly bowfish from the bank or from bridges but this is what I use when I'm on the lake: 1980 Lowe 16481980 Mercury 25 hp tiller steer 2 cycle I put the floor in it myself with FRP panels supported by pink Foamular insulation installed between the ribs in the floor. Doug when I first started bow fishing at night I used 4- 12 volt flood lights that was connected to a trolling battery.
I bought them at Farm King I think for around 12.00 a piece but that was 12 to 15 years ago. You guys should do a search for " Loop charging trolling motor batteries from your outboard" All the big time walleye fisherman have their boats set up this way. Man that boat looks great but you might want to put it in the water and sit in the front to make sure it is not too high before you make it permanent. Well after considering the front deck and the stability issues that could arise, I decided to change my plans once again. Ane give been speculative 1 have two nephews that induce lately purchased jon boats to fish out of.
You could use a stainless finish washer to keep from pulling the screw head through the aluminum floor.
Post pics of your boats, suggestions, ideas or anything that will help those of us that want to spend time on the water chasing fish with recurves and longbows.Here is a video I made this summer that shows my boat and why things are like they are. I run a GPS guided trolling motor so when we arrive at a lake we have fished before it is simply a matter of telling the motor to drive the boat and start shooting. This has worked out great for flooring without the added weight and rot of wood and is much cheaper than aluminum.I would love to install some LED lights and run them off of a battery or two. I made this mistake with my first mod and ended up getting rid of it because it was too unstable.
The only time I'll use the front deck is when I'm out by myself on the water and just trolling around. I was unable to take the boat to the river or lake this week because the dock at the river is flooded and the lake is frozen over.I'm going to do away with the front casting deck idea and just have two pedestals on the boat. You might want to take the boat out one time with the batteries up front in it and make sure she will run like you want it to. I would think that over time as the foam compressed that the screws would not make contact with the floor.

I also like the bargain hunting, this from the library sign, that from an estate sale, the other from the scrapyard; good stuff there! I have not used the boat for night fishing yet so don't know how it works.The setup for my 1st boat with the lights on the deck put out a lot of heat from the lights.
I have always wanted a fan motor but gas for a fan, generator, and outboard eat you up each trip. I fight it all the time but can usually tip the bullet nose of the troller out of the water so it points up on a 45 degree angle and just the prop in the water. I totally stripped it & rebuilt it with a 6'x6' platform, sodium lighting & a 50hp Force motor.At some point I'd like to rip out the wooden flooring (I ran out of cash for a checker-plate floor) & re-do it, plus there are a couple of leaks that I missed.Unless someone wants to buy it! I have seen where people just mount the lights on the pipe and the mount breaks off the light tab. The light from these fixtures is equal to [about] a 250w worklight, pretty powerful and made better by the housings. I framed the back deck, and cut out the deck for the rear and the front, as well as the front seat. I'm hoping the front deck has enough space to mount the trolling motor and still have enough room to operate it the foot control. I hope the raised deck with the lights under it will prevent so much heat hitting me and possibly keep some bugs off me. You don't see too many tunnel hulls anymore.I would love to check out the muzzy shoot and wish I could hit women of the local shoots here too. They are coming along way with the colors of the led light to help with the muddy waters and offer great versatility and quietness!Ben,Your boat is a great boat. There are other 27w led fixtures that look like the KC lights but not even close to the big 50w fixtures, IMO. I was originally going to use aluminum angle to do all the bracing, but with money tight and really no need for it, I used what I had laying around the house. I also don't plan on driving the boat up onto the bunks, those things are slick as crap and I won't be able to hold it steady and try to crank myself in at the same time.
Today I tore out the decking and started with a clean slate again.I moved the front storage area up to the next rib of the boat, which leaves me with one compartment in front of the original bench in the front of the boat. Also it looks like you might have trouble getting to the tiller handle if you have a full rear deck.
I found out the first few times out the bigger boat weighted so much more it was a lot harder to move around. I ran into a person several times a few years back from up North that was coming over where I shoot. But my job as a wedding photographer has me working every weekend.Bofish-IL, the center tower is set up with led lights for shooting bigheads. I'm going to use my rope to pull it up on the trailer, attach the winch strap, then pull it on out and strap it down on the ramp.

It would be nice to have both hands free, but for this boat, I'm not sure if it has the space. I'd buy a used 4 or 5 HP outboard for a couple hundred bucks and rig it up as a stck steer. I am not going to fasten anything down to the boat - In the rear, I made the frame to rest on the ribs, and then I'll attach that frame to the deck (not deck to the frame, attach from the rear side, so no screws will be going through the carpet. I'll have to figure out how to rig that one without them going everywhere when I open it.I don't have pics yet, but I finished framing the front deck. I know I have to be down at the deck level to really use my outboard (40hp yamaha).Post up some more pics. I decided to do it like this so that I can take the panels in and out if I want to.As for the front deck, I'm going to use angle as the rear brace across the back seat, then build up the brace again with 2x2. I have a small Honda genny I ran my old lights on but I bowfish to relax and drifting across delta flats at night with the LEDS and no noise except the breeze is just too cool to describe. Also would have a a handle on the stick like a bicycle brake that would work the throttle and a push pull lever for shifting. Watch Later First trial run after flat floor refit atomic number 13 planks put-upon atomic number 33 floor.
If you feel the weight of the bigger boat gets to be a problem for your troller you could add a kicker with stick steer or a fan with a stick steer.
Only thing I've done so far is cut out the deck - it's opening weekend, and there are a few games I have to see!! We do everything in this boat including alligator, waterfowl, bowfishing, stripers and much more.
I have a eagletac 800 lumen flashlight in a fenix headband and another eagletac 800 lumen light mounted on my bow above my reel. If you can see in the second picture, the sides are accessible - this is where I can stick my plano boxes when fishing in the front. The kicker will chew thru the weeds more efficiently and move you fast enough to chase fish. I asked why and he said he found out the hard way the wind turning the prop on the interstate would burn the bearings up in the motor. Never would of thought about that.The bad thing about the Mississippi is you run up River 3 or 4 miles and just when the bow fishing gets good a lightning storm pops up. I can take the seat off and sand over the mount - but I'd end up in the water tripping over it. They are also a pain in the butt with any wind as they only like to go straight into the wind at fishing speeds.

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