Delirious Intentions

Sanity is the opinion of the observer.

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Monthly Archives: December 2014

No more dead-lifting the kayak

Saturday I tried the new ramp out with the kayak, and it works perfectly. With it fully loaded it rides up the ramp, backwards, and as it is within a few inches of the roof, it passes the center of balance and it teeters down level in the back of the truck. Even if the kayak is not fully loaded the bow is only a couple pounds heavy and can be easily lifted with one finger. I set up a few pulleys to give me the leverage on the pulling force, so it doesn’t take much force to pull it up the ramp.


I took it out today to try out the ramp.  I was very surprised that the ramp actually performed better than I had anticipated. It slid right out, nice and neat. And when I came back in, it only took me about 5 minutes to load the kayak into the truck. Fully loaded with the trolling motor too. The ramp has saved me at least 30 minutes in launching & landing times.

Ramp it up a notch

The kayak is growing in features and weight. It is starting to become difficult to lift it into my truck. Time to remedy that quickly! So I built a quick ramp that the kayak can ride on in the truck. Now I can leave it fully loaded and still get it in and out of the truck with ease.

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 Welded a hitch receiver to a box beam T-bar with a couple pieces of U-channel welded on top.


 Built the ramp out of 2 x 4 and covered it with carpeting. Using 2 x 6 braces to keep it rigid when winching it up the ramp.


 Plugs right into my hitch receiver and lays across the bed of the truck.


It is a bit steep. But I have 3 pullies to help winch it up.


 Once I get it up it will tilt down and the kayak can slide all the way up inside the truck.


 Best of all it fits neatly inside the truck for when I am out on the water.

First powered excursion

I needed to load test the kayak with the new motor mount and batteries. So I took it out on a cold morning.


 burr! Yes, even for me it was a bit nippy out this morning. But I was undaunted and determined to do some testing and fishing.


 But on a beautiful day like this, how can you say no?

It handled beautifully. The batteries are well balanced and  the test rig with the single motor works great. I was doing just over 3 mph. With the two batteries I was running  around at full throttle for about 2 hours and still had plenty of power left in the batteries at the end of the day.


 I traveled around 9 miles total. Fished along the mangroves all the way up the inside. Then cruised down the inter-coastal water way along the beach.

Only problem I found was trying to lift the kayak in to the truck with the batteries still in it. Time to fix that problem!

Box of rods

Made a quick rod holder for six rods out of an old milk crate and two 3 rod racks.


Some stainless steel hardware and it was finished in about 10 minutes.


 Fits perfectly in the back and tied down with bungees.

Many small things come in boxes

Here is the breakdown for the brains and the brawn. The water proof enclosure for the micro controller and drive controller. I measured out the space under the seat and bought an exterior water proof enclosure for the electronics. It will fit securely in between the batteries under the seat.

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I have a 100 Amp shunt for the main power. It is connected to the Amp meter in the wired controller. It is wired to the ground from the distribution bus in series to the battery ground. This will let me monitor the total amperage usage directly from the batteries. The Volt meter in the wired controller is also tied to this bus. I also have 3 disconnects for the accessories and lights to connect to the box.

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I installed the following hardware onto a sheet of Marine StarBoard: a 100 Amp dual H-bridge drive controller for the main motors, a 60Amp H-bridge for the lights, and 4 x 10 Amp relays.


Also installed 4 analog 30 Amp current meters, which are wired into the micro controller. 1 for each motor, 3rd for the main system and lights, 4th for the charging circuit.


Nearly completed with the wiring. Still need to add a charge controller and wire up the 15 pin cable from the joy stick controller.

Dreams of completion

Every once in a while I have to travel out of town. One of the locations that I travel too is near the west coast of Florida. It happens to be close to one of the best fishing areas in all of South Florida.  Just 30 minutes out of my way is ten thousand islands, on the south west coast. Several miles of mangrove islands surrounded by pristine waters, full of all kinds of game fish. It is one of the reasons for my idea of the kayak project.

Every time I come out this way I dream of bringing the kayak, and taking off for a couple days to go fishing there. One day soon, when I have the project near completion, I will take a couple days off to go fishing there with the kayak. It will be ideal for running around all the mangrove islands and channels among ten thousand islands.

Dreams can come true. You only have to belive it them, and strive to make them happen.

Brains! Must have brains!

Just call me Frankenstein. Do you want to meet my monster?

So what am I going to run this monster with?



I love micro controllers. One of the most flexible and easiest to program micro controllers is from the Arduino family. They have a large user base and support. For prototyping small projects you can’t go wrong with an Arduino.


 For this build I am starting with a Arduino Mega 2560. But I may upgrade to the Arduino Due for the final build. I added a few prototype shields to the controller for all the connections and controls. The top shield has a LED bar graph to show the output state to the main drive controller, as well as a few other circuits for various inputs.


The wired remote controller

OK, so now this is where it starts to get interesting!

I figured out all the hardware requirements and purchased the equipment. To start off with this build, I need a controller that is flexible and waterproof. I designed the controller to have at least a IP65 or higher rating.


As for the joy stick, the best fit for my needs was APEM Components Two Axis w/ Sealed Push button, Hall Effect joystick.  As soon as I ordered the joy stick I got a call from the retailer for information pertaining to the use and shipment of the joystick. They wanted to verify that it was not being shipped out of the country. I assured them it was for my own personal use, and that I needed that particular one because of the features and the IP67 waterproof rating.  Most importantly I need a fail safe tether kill switch. And with all the data lines it will require I need a 16 pin disconnect for it too.


 Ah the fun of soldering and heat shrinking 30 small wires to the connectors.


 This was even more fun! Crimping all the wires to the joy stick data cable. Just look how small they are! Four 1/16″ tabs to crimp on each wire. Luckily I only had to redo 1 wire.


 Now to start wiring up the wired remote controller box. Lots of meters, displays, switches, potentiometer, and the joy stick.


 So what the heck is in there?

  • 2 axis joystick with push button
  • 10k potentiometer
  • 3 waterproof push buttons
  • 100A digital Amp meter display
  • 3-30V digital Volt meter for the batteries
  • tethered kill switch
  • 2 wire 128×64 LCD display (0.9″ in picture, 1.28″ in final build)



 This is what it will look like. Quickly hooked it up and tested the controller to verify everything was wired correctly and working.


 Even the 128×64 LCD display is working. Going to use this for all the menu options, controllable by the 3 buttons on the side of the controller.

Rats on a sinking ship

When rats leave a sinking ship, where exactly do they think they’re going?
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

This rat ain’t leaving no ship, as long as the ship doesn’t leave me. With electrical equipment, and most importantly Lead Acid Batteries, on the kayak I have to have a bilge pump!




 Mounted a low profile deep V bilge pump, using the old drain plug for the through hull drain.

The first trolling motor and mount

The test trolling motor may be in use for a while until the next phase of the project is ready. I might as well make it practical and useful.


 I mounted some PVC fittings to the top of the control stand pipe, and extended the wiring. I have sealed all the fittings to make it water tight. I then ran the wiring down a flexible hose to keep it sealed.


 I will then connect the motor to a heavy duty 5 pin disconnect.

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 Added a temporary steering bar. Controllable with my feet. It is spring loaded to bring it back to center. The lines are crossed so that it will turn opposite the side you push on. Like steering a bicycle.


 The whole assembly is removable with 5 D-rings (control lines) and 1 stainless steel bolt. Roll up the control lines on the control bar and remove the 1 bolt. Slide it backwards and remove the motor mount from the kayak.

Removable motor mount.

OK, so I have stated that the motor will not be permanent. So I need a removable motor mount. But I don’t want some thing complicated that requires so many bolts and fasteners to deal with. So here is how I did it.


 First is the hardware. I have a bunch of lap and groove aluminum plates from some old decommissioned equipment I work on. The lap grove is just a hair thinner then half the thickness of the material, making it easy to overlap. I drilled and tapped each plate in 5 points for locking them together.


 For each side I have one underneath and two on top.


They are positioned in a way that allows me to slide another forward and interlock between the two on top of the deck.


 Mounted a 3rd set in the back for a locking bar. It also replaces the carry handle. Mount the same matching set in reverse to a plate of Marine Star Board to complete the mount. It is fastened together by placing it just behind the locking position and pushing it forward.


 The upper mounting plate interlocks to the fixed mounting rails on the hull. It is secured in place with a single bolt through the back into the rail which also replaces the handle.


 For testing the project build I am starting out with a single motor. I added a piece of 2×4 to the starboard for the trolling motor mount to attach to.

A motorized Kayak? But isn’t that cheating?

As I said in a previous post. “Yes, I do not deny it!”


Ever since I posted this picture on my personal pages, I have been catching flack from friends and family. “Why didn’t you just buy a john boat?” “That defeats the purpose of getting some exercise!” “What a waste of a perfectly good Kayak!” “Isn’t that cheating?” The comments kept rolling in.  At least most were nice enough to express their comments privately. What is wrong with people? Did you forget who I am and what I do? ……  What is my nick name?

The name is not just for the Kayak or the website!

It represents who I am!

Delirious Intentions!

What does it mean?  Let me define it for you:

Delirious(1&2)    Intentions(1&2)

Have I ever done anything normal? Everyone knows I have a very creative and inventive mind.  Look at the things I have built in the past. The automation systems, robots, and other various builds and modifications. Before you start coming down on me with condescending comments about a trolling motor on a kayak at least find out what it is for!  And no, this is not a permanent attachment to the Kayak! Granted I will use it a lot, but it is not permanent. That is just a part of the project.

The following posts to this site should begin to clarify my “Intentions!” This is just the first of two trolling motors. I need the first one for testing the hardware and controller systems of a dual thrust steering system I am building. I am still in the development stage of a very unique project. One that has never been built, but is sure to become a big hit!


I have a 9 foot flat bottom racing boat, and a 18 foot open fisherman. If I just wanted to go fishing I have various options to choose from. This is not why I bought the Kayak. The 9′ flat bottom boat is well suited for fishing the flats. But it equates to trying to fish from a wave runner/ jet-ski. Great for getting some where in a hurry, but not the most ideal for fishing. The 18′ open fishermen is great for open water fishing. But both are fossil fueled vessels which are not allowed in some of the mangrove preserves. Many of which have some of the best fishing in South Florida. Both have another draw back as well. They both cost money to take out and require lots of maintenance and cleaning every time I go out. Not to mention the fact that you can only launch them from a boat ramp. So everything has to be planed out.

With a kayak, I can literally just toss it in the back of my truck and launch from any where I have access to parking by the water, and be in the water fishing within 30 minutes.  It doesn’t cost a penny to take it out, except maybe parking. I can have it all cleaned up and stored away in about 15-20 minutes. It is also a great challenge that can not compare to fishing from a regular boat. There is nothing like hooking a big fish and going on a sleigh ride.  It is small and maneuverable. It can get into some of the tight canals that even a john boat can not go.

I just happen to come up with a very unique idea that I have never seen anywhere. A small dual thrust steering boat which can get into and maneuver around some of the tightest areas. Like canal fishing. Where some of the best sport fishing can be easily found. Most Snook, Tarpon, and Jacks are found in the small canals around the bay, like the mangroves and residential canals. They school in these canals because it is easy feeding grounds for them, and difficult for most fishermen to get in there and find them. My project allows me to get into these locations and easy maneuver around and catch them. Also without a combustible engine they don’t even hear me coming.  I have already had a few occasions where the big fish were within 5-10 feet from the kayak and not even get spooked away. If anything, they have spooked me when they finally do see me.


If you really want to see what I have planed, then check back here from time to time. I intend to keep this site updated on a regular basis to my projects. Not just the kayak, but all my projects.

Some fun time on the water!


I decided to hit the flats south of 79th street, in Biscayne Bay, with the Kayak. It was a beautiful morning! I headed out to the island, where I saw a pod of dolphin’s feeding. Just to the east of the islands, near the feeding dolphin’s, I started fishing.


I caught a few nice jacks feeding near the channel.  I traveled all around the island and across the flats.  It was a wonderful day with lots of strikes.


I decided to invite a bunch of them to dinner.


It turned out to be the perfect meal to try out my new smoker with. After cleaning and filleting, I had 28 nice size steaks for the smoker.


I am glad I got into kayak fishing. It is unlike any other. The challenges make the experience even more fun.

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