Beaver Dam Longtail Mud Motor Kit Test Run

These are my experiences with a 2016 Alumacraft 1436 LT riveted jon boat with a Predator 13 hp 420cc engine. Your experience may differ from mine depending on your boat and motor. Please subscribe to my YouTube channel and watch the videos that go along with these reviews!

Finally, onto the more interesting part of this Longtail Mud Motor Kit Comparison series! Starting off, the Beaver Dam longtail mud motor kit test run! We tested the water first with the Beaver Dam Mud Runner kit. It was the first one we built, and it was the first one to be tested out in the water. This is how it went….

Testing the Beaver Dam Mud Motor Kit

Testing the Beaver Dam Longtail Mud Motor Kit on the water

The water test for the CLP Beaver Dam Mud Runner Kit did not go good. I had an overall bad experience with this kit. At the end of the day, I was not able to get the longtail mud motor kit to ride correctly, or the way I would have liked it to ride. It was hard to control and I experienced a few issues

The Issues Experienced

Beaver Dam Longtail Mud Motor Kit Test Run
  • Transom Mount – The engine base would bottom out on the transom mount.
  • Tiller Handle – The shape of the handle was awkward (personal preference) & the handle twisted in the mount, and became loose.
  • Throttle Lever – You do not get full throttle travel out of throttle lever supplied with your kit.
  • Hard to Control – Multiple adjustments made with tail weight, prop size, and skeg adjustment and no change.

Tiller Handle Issues

I experienced two different issues with the tiller handle. The first issue I experienced was the way the tiller handle is secured to the engine base. There are two bolts that you tighten down on to the handle to secure it with. These two bolts “secure” the tiller handle in place by friction. They do not go through the handle to prevent it form twisting. The problem I encountered was when I was using the longtail to paddle the boat to turn it around. When I did so, the handle came loose, and I was no longer able to control the motor. After pulling the safety kill switch, I inspected the tiller handle and mount, you could see where the bolts had made a groove in the handle where it twisted in the mount. You can fix this problem by modifying your kit but I don’t think you should have to modify your kit to make it safe after you just paid $550 for it. 

The other issue I have with the tiller handle is that it is awkward. You have a Z bent handle that sits tall and has a high profile. When you are standing and driving, it may be fine, but when you sit down, it is very uncomfortable and hard to maneuver. Especially if your kit is not riding correctly.

Transom Mount Issue

The transom bracket is meant to have the gimbal hole positioned outside of the boat. With the Alumacraft riveted jon boats, the transom has a steep angle. With this steep angle, the engine base bottoms out on the transom bracket. The problem you experience with this, is that you are not able to get the prop out of the water. When you go to push down on the handle to raise the prop out of the water, the engine base bottoms out on the transom bracket and prevents you from getting the prop out of the water. You need to get the prop out of the water to start the engine and to slow down and stop forward movement.

Throttle Lever Issue

This issue really doesn’t need too much explaining/reasoning. The throttle lever that comes in your kit does not have enough travel to match the throttle on your engine. I used this kit on a 13 hp Predator 420cc engine. With the Beaver Dam Mud Runner throttle lever, you can either have idle speed up to 3/4 of your max throttle, or have full throttle with a pretty high idle speed. It does not travel from idle speed all the way to max throttle.

Hard to Control

I spent multiple hours on the water to try and get this kit dialed in. No matter what I did, if I went over 12-13 mph the prop would jump out of the wake. I tried bending the skeg to help correct the prop from jumping out of the wake; I tried a smaller prop; I changed where the motor sat on the transom; and I gave the kit as much tail weight as it could have, and I had zero success of changing this rough, hard handling ride into a good one. To get any speed over 13 mph, you had to pull up on the handle and force that prop into the water, and that is not the way a longtial mud motor should ride.

Contacting Beaver Dam

I first emailed Mr. Miller, owner of Beaver Dam Mud Runner, with the issues I encountered. I spoke on the phone with him for over an hour, and he said a planing tab would be the only other thing that would help. A “Planing Tab” is a last ditch effort to try and get your motor to ride smoother and handle easier. The planing tab is meant to be bolted or welded onto your skeg and angled down to help push the prop into the water. If it is at too deep of an angle, it forces the prop too far down and becomes hard to control. If there is not enough angle to it, your prop will still jump out of the wake and not ride easily. The negatives of a planing tab is that it increases drag and makes it increasingly difficult to turn at higher speeds. But if you have a motor that is very difficult to handle, like mine, it does give you a chance to get your motor riding easier.


The Beaver Dam longtail mud motor kit test run was a major learning experience. I learned that this Beaver Dam Mud Runner kit does not work with my riveted Alumacraft jon boat, and most likely wouldn’t work with any boat with a steep transom angle to it, but this kit may ride better for those who have a flat transom with very little angle to it. It is the most expensive kit, and the first kit assemble and water tested in this series. I never got this kit to handle easily over 13 mph. Any speed under 13 mph was fine and easy to handle, but as you increased your speed, no mater what adjustments I made, it increasingly became more difficult to handle.

Beaver Dam Mud Runners – CLP
Swamp Runner Mud Motors – SPS
Mud Skipper – CKS