Best layout for new Deck for 1996 Bass Tracker Pro Team 170

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New member
Apr 7, 2021
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Aiken South Carolina
I am in the process of ripping up the carpet in my 1996 Pro 17, and I want to customize the storage under the deck while doing this.

I fish alone 50% of the time and 50% I have a friend in the back and we only fish the lake I live on. The Boat is stored in a boathouse and no real need for rod locker onboard. There seems to be a lot of wasted space under the deck and I want to use it to it’s fullest.

I will be doing the following upgrades:
- Replacing the carpet with some type of Foam Decking
- Adding a Trolling Motor Tray in Deck
- Upgrading to 24 Volt Trolling motor.

My questions are;

What is the best deck/storage layout to make it easier to get at the soon to be three batteries ( especially as I upgrade to 24 Volt and it’s tough to get at the batteries and the onboard charger).
What type of metal do I need to build the new deck framing?
Should I replace the standard gas tank with a smaller 6 gallon tank ( a Tank last me a Month right now) ?
Should I make some type of storage in-between the seats and if so any ideas?
Most of my fishing is done from the front of the boat w/ a trolling motor. Should I have the Side imaging 899SI on the front and the Garmin Striker 4 at the drivers seat?
What ideas am I missing and anyone have pictures?



Well-known member
Jul 12, 2017
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Springfield, MO
When I redid my deck, I made two large flip-up doors that open into the bowels of the front deck area. My batteries are on the left (two group 29s and a 30ah lithium), and I keep all of my tackle on the right. I have two clear plastic ammo cans, one for line spools, one for soft plastics. I believe I have 6 standard size trays, one small tray for jigging raps, and one large tray for bottom bouncing stuff all in one side of that compartment. I'm not sure how the Mod-Vs are set up but on Deep-Vs like mine the area under the front deck is pretty large. Making the doors bigger than you think they need to be will make getting batteries in and out much easier. If needed, you can also cut an access hole on the vertical face of the rear deck to slide your batteries in and out that way.

I believe the factory used aluminum angle for the deck supports, probably .125 or .100. I go to the local scrapyard and buy scrap aluminum, old ladders, tread plate, whatever I can find for like 30c a pound. Ladder beams make great deck supports.

For you graphs, you need to be moving at a pretty good clip (3-5mph) for side imaging to work properly. Most prefer to have it on the console so you can idle through and scan an area. Once you're actually fishing, you generally only need to know what's under you and 2D sonar works fine for that.

My boat has a storage box between the seats, it came that way. It's where I keep snacks, water, sunscreen, etc. Pretty handy.


Well-known member
Jun 7, 2010
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Rural NY
Welcome to TinBoats!

I don't know your boats layout, so can't add much there. I do agree with Mr G to leave the SI at the console.

If you are considering a new trolling motor, highly recommend looking at one with GPS capabilities. With anchor lock and directional navigation, you spend allot more time fishing than navigating. We put one on my son's new boat, and will never buy one without it, going forward.