This month, we’d like to highlight Jim Merz, from Fort Wayne, Indiana, as August’s Port Elco Club Member of the Month.
This is a special boat to our family. It’s a molded fiberglass boat built in 1958 and my in-laws bought it when they got married to use on their honeymoon. I just renovated the boat and got her back into ship-shape.
I’ve been very interested in electric propulsion for a while. I’m very much a do-it-yourselfer and I like electronics. I just took delivery of a Tesla model 3. This boat had a two stroke motor on it originally that was noisy and I wanted to replace it, and the new four-strokes are very heavy and expensive. The Elco motor performs great, it was super easy to put on and hook up.
We go out on the local lakes and rivers here in Fort Wayne, Indiana. We use it kind of like a little pontoon boat and just putt-putt around. However it was strictly on me to make the decision to go electric, we don’t have any restrictions around here about gas motors on the rivers or anything like that.
The good thing about the electric propulsion, and I’ve experienced this with my Tesla, too, is that you just press the accelerator and it goes—so the performance is really there. And my Elco outboard has very good performance all along the speed range. You can go from slow to really fast and it’s the same amount of quiet.
All in all, I love the motor. It has given a new lease on life to a really special old boat.
— Jim Merz, Fort Wayne, Indiana