I’ve had a ton of questions about a number of different aspects of the SeaArk ProCat 240 and how I rigged it. Floatation pods have been one of the most asked questions (besides how I built my DIY rod storage rack).
I wanted to take an opportunity to answer the questions, talk a little more about floatation pods on a catfish boat (or any aluminum boat for that matter), what they do and why you might need them on your boat.
Floatation pods are common on aluminum boats if the owner plans to frequent shallow water. They’re a staple on duck hunting boats and common on many other aluminum boats including catfish boats.
The pods extend beyond the transom and add extra floatation to lift the back end up out of the water which is the heaviest part of the boat.
Extending the floatation beyond the transom and adding pods helps:**
- Reduces how far the transom of the boat sits in the water helping to compensate for the weight of the outboard motor and batteries.
- Levels the boat by reducing how low the transom sits.
- Improves performance by helping the boat to plane out faster.
- Forces water to the propellor, which can help with getting on plane in skinny water.
- Improves holeshot (rapid acceleration of the boat)
- Reduces transom backsplash (when you slow the boat down and water comes over the back of the transom)
** These are general benefits of a floatation pods on a transom and not implying that you’ll have these issues with a SeaArk ProCat or any other boat that does not have pods added. It’s simply some of the benefits you might see by adding them to a boat.
When my SeaArk ProCat 240 was built I added the floatation pods to help offset the weight of the Suzuki 225 4 Stroke motor, four batteries plus the weight that’s added when I fill the rear 80 gallon livewell.
I wanted pods because I wanted every advantage to fishing shallow water I could have.
If you’re ordering a new aluminum boat most manufacturers offer floatation pods as an option that can be added to the boat.
If you’ve got an existing aluminum boat and are experiencing any of the issues mentioned above adding floatation pods to it may be a good option. There’s a variety of manufacturers that offer aftermarket options as well though they have to be welded to the boat.
My Experience With Pods On The SeaArk ProCat 240
I added the pods on the ProCat 240 when I had it built because of the weight of the 225 Suzuki Outboard, the batteries and the weight that would be added when the 80 gallon livewell is filled (the weight of the water alone is 667 pounds).
More than anything I wanted to make sure I had every advantage to fishing shallow water. I’ve been targeting shallow water blue catfish the past few months as covered in Transition Cats and Spring Blue Catfish Techniques and the ProCat continues to impress me.
It easily operates in 12″ of water and will often run more shallow than that without issues. I think next time around I’m going to add a hydraulic jackplate in addition to the pods for the ultimate shallow water advantage!
If you’re considering buying or building a new catfish boat then floatation pods are definitely an option to consider, especially if you like to catch catfish in shallow water.