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Old 07-26-2021, 10:36 AM
law57 law57 is offline
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: N. MN
Posts: 1,114
Default Bimini top on a tiller?

Has anyone tried using a Bimini top on a tiller boat? Install wouldn't be an issue. But fishing with it may be (issue).

Front trolling or bottom bouncing shouldn't be that difficult. Fighting, landing, a big fish might turn into a Chinese fire drill (I'm not Woke yet)... But I've lost big fish before...

Back trolling would preset more problems. I think I could fish that way. But you other back trollers know that when dealing with a snag, the bow of your boat doesn't always mind you. Trying to get to the snag may cause chaos.

Chaos: A state of utter confusion or disorder; a total lack of organization or order. (Dictionary.com). Sound familiar? LOL

Here's my problem - the high Minnesota summer sun really bakes you during the summer months. I've had numerous basic cell and squamous cell carcinomas - all benign. These two are very common in older people and very seldom of concern. But I have had a bought with melanoma - we all know that's a worrisome cancer. It makes dermatologists jump and leaves a big scar when they're finished. I've been free of it for some years. But, still my dermatologist insists I get more sun protection - sun tan is a dead giveaway.

So, I'm thinking of a Bimini on my Alaskan tiller. If any of you have any experience with this application or any input. I'd sure appreciate it. I don't want to quit fishing during the hot summer days. But I don't want to go thru that melanoma protocol again.

No, I'm not an attorney. Middle name is Lawton - some friends call me 'Law'. Only legal advice I give is, when in doubt, hire an attorney.
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Old 07-26-2021, 02:01 PM
Ozark Bob Ozark Bob is offline
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Lakeview, Arkansas, USA.
Posts: 4,869

First off I am 76( in a couple weeks) I don't have a tiller, but have an old lund "LE". It puts the console in the back 1/3 of the boat. Mostly troll and have rigged up a partially collapsible Bimini. When I hook a fish I can move the back half of the top easily and have it stay that way till I want to pull it back for shade after netting. Tension provided with
bungee cords. That is the only I have found to be shaded and still able to fight and land fish. Spf rated clothing gloves and hats are another way. I try a combination. We have mostly 90 degree days in the summer and I too dislike parts of my skin being removed. I would imagine a good canvas shop could help your situation out. Bob
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Old 07-26-2021, 02:33 PM
REW REW is offline
Charter Member
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: .
Posts: 38,838

The suggestion that I will make is the one that I use during these years.

I don't fish when the sun is bright in the sky.
I fish for an hour before sun rise and a couple of hours after sunrise.

I fish for two hours before sunset and for two hours after sunset.

I have also had issues with Cancer, and the big C wins the battle every time.

So, I will put the big C first and fishing second.

i.e. I minimize my time in the sun during the brightest time of the day.

Also, from a historic stand point, over the years of fishing, I have caught more fish from the hour before sun rise to two hours after sunrise, and 2 hours before sunset and 2-4 hours after sundown than all of the middle of day fishing combined.

So, when the sun get high and bright, I go find a hole out of the sun - so to speak. Then, when the rays of the sun weaken, I venture back out to catch a limit in the evening.


Particularly when using a tiller, there a lot of folks that don't use a bimini but a large umbrella with a single vertical pole for a mount so it very much minimizes the interference that one might get with a bimini top and braces and tie straps.

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Old 07-26-2021, 05:24 PM
Ozark Bob Ozark Bob is offline
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Lakeview, Arkansas, USA.
Posts: 4,869

Short of taking up vampire hours, I also have found a sunscreen I can use without a big mess. It is a Neutrogena sunscreen in the form of a small stick deodorant. It goes on the face neatly and without having to wash it off your hands. Can be used anywhere on the body. The one I use is SPF 70. Not greasy or heavy. Ultra Sheer face and body.
Hope you do well. It is no fun even for walk in surgery. The only minor surgery is one performed on somebody else. Prevention is much easier. Bob
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Old 07-26-2021, 05:48 PM
EWK EWK is offline
Slot Fish
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Nicollet County Mn & Winnebago County Iowa
Posts: 102
Default bimini on tiller boat .

I'm an "old Fart' and don't care for the Hot sun either . But I solved that problem years ago with a 9 ft wide Patio umbrella . Positioned on a stand a few feet front of my seat , provides nice shade and only one tall post that is Not a problem . I'm a Tiller Only fan .
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Old 07-26-2021, 05:50 PM
Dave G Dave G is online now
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Rochester, MN.
Posts: 449

For several years I attached a large umbrella to the back of my tiller seat. It worked well but frequently I would forget it was open and take off to the next spot. Warning... a large umbrella does not do well when open and going 30 mph. I since quit fishing when it was too hot for me and I wear all kinds of sun protection hats, clothing, and sunscreen.
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Old 07-26-2021, 06:51 PM
Baseline Baseline is offline
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Northern, MN
Posts: 2,783

You can have a top custom made by a good quality shop and dictate what you want. While there are certain connection points you need to make to support the top. You can make it so you can push the top forward and it will accordion down when you have a fish on. They you just simply pull it back up.

My shop made a top for my console boat that is 7 1/2 tall which allows for lots of movement under the top. If I need to drop the top to land a big fish I pull two pins and push it forward. It collapses against the top of the windshield.
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Old 07-26-2021, 07:03 PM
x4flatfish x4flatfish is offline
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 227

Don't hesitate to do it. I don't have a tiller, side console. Just put on a bimini about 2 weeks ago. One of the best additions to our boat. Makes a huge difference on a hot summer day. Figuring out how to fish with it installed is not a big deal. The relief from the sun will make you forget about any issues it creates, and make your time on the water much more enjoyable!
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Old 07-27-2021, 08:58 AM
BKfishing BKfishing is offline
Slot Fish
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Fresno
Posts: 108

I have a bimini on my Lund Fury Xl tiller and love it during the summer. It protects the middle of the boat nearly all day while the drivers seat area depends on the position of the sun (shadow effect). When forward trolling, top lines or downrigging, you do limit yourself to landing fish out the back but it hasnít really been an issue with big fish or multiple hookups as long as you know or practice your netting plan. Vertical jigging is easy. I do not backtroll, so canít help you there.

I also have skin cancer and getting the bimini top really has helped protect my skin.
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Old 07-27-2021, 12:19 PM
Derwood Derwood is online now
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: .
Posts: 2,555

Sure hope you can find a way to get one of those figured out. I had no idea they made such a difference until I started using one! Totally awesome!
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