Install an Outboard Bracket

Lead Image
  • 2-8 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 50-100
What You'll Need
Tape measure
Framing Square
Stainless steel bolts
Marine sealant
Aluminum plate
Masking tape
Sanding materials
Old newspapers

An outboard bracket for your boat improves the line of thrust, the center of effort, and floatation. Enlist a few friends to help you install an outboard bracket. If you don’t have experience or enough knowledge of Fiberglas, it is best to contact a skilled repairman to ensure that no damage happens to your bracket or your boat.

Step 1 - Prepare the Outboard Bracket

Before trying to install your outdoor bracket, make sure that you have already sanded it. Prime it and apply paint in your desired color. Use a rag to wipe away dust from sanding before starting to prime your bracket. Place the bracket on top of layered old newspapers to ensure that paint won’t drip in your working area.

It is also best to work indoors to ensure that your engine won’t get wet from any unexpected rain.

Step 2 - Check up the Transom

The transom must have enough strength. To check this, you might need to get a fiberglass expert. Add plywood to the insides of the transom if needed.

Step 3 - Mark the Centerline

Measure the keel centerline using a framing square. Mark the transom depending on the size of your motor. If you are using a 20-inch motor, the mark should be 19 inches. Remember that the marks on the boat’s transom must fit that of the bracket.

Drill holes for your stainless steel boats. Remember that the bolts of your bracket must be at least 10 inches apart to provide strength. Tape the areas where the outboard bracket would be sealed (including the nut areas) to ensure that the sealant won’t take the paint off your boat.

Step 4 - Apply Sealant

Use a reliable marine sealant to fill up holes that are too loose for your bolts. Also, apply a generous amount of marine sealant around the nuts to ensure that no water can go through it. Also apply the sealant to the seam of the bracket to the transom.

Step 6 - Get a Backing Plate

Install the aluminum backing plate once you have double-checked the sturdiness of the outboard and the placement of the motor.

Step 7 - Inspect for Openings

Let the sealant dry completely as instructed by its manufacturer. Take off the masking tape that you have previously placed. Use a flashlight to check on any possible openings that you have missed. If you see one or two, tape on masking tape around the area and apply the sealant. It might also be necessary to double-check on the areas where you have already applied marine sealant.