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Fish House Makes Ice Fishing Easy
If you love ice fishing but hate the chore of moving your fish house, you'll like this self-propelled rig.
"It's got all the comforts of home," says Robert Pittrich of rural West Rutland, Vt., who built the rig with his friend Joe Wilk. "It'll get you to new fishing holes in a jiffy because it moves along at speeds up to 40 mph."
The 2,000-lb. fish house is powered by a two-cycle, 55 hp, 350 cc engine out of an old Polaris snowmobile. The engine drives a three-speed manual transmission out of a Mercedes-Benz car.
The shanty's front drive axle came off a 4-WD Dodge pickup. It has 15-in. tires, hydraulic brakes, and locking hubs that are disengaged for road transport and engaged for fishing or moving around a lake.
The removable rear axle is fitted with 13-in. wheels and mounts on a trailer hitch so it can be quickly and easily hooked up to a car or pickup for over-the-road transport.
Two 12-volt deep cycle batteries provide power for two 25-watt incandescent fog lights on front, red tail lights on back, an outside floodlight, and electric lights inside. The floor of the shanty has four 14-in. dia. fishing holes with sleeves that run from the bottom of the fish house floor to the ice. Heat is supplied by a 30,000 Btu propane heater.
Both the framework and skin of the 6-ft. wide by 8-ft. long by 7-ft. high house are built out of aluminum. It's fully insulated with Styrofoam - 1/2 in. in walls, 1 in. in ceiling, and 2 in. in the floor. Inside walls are wood paneled and there are curtains on side windows; mini blinds on front windows.
Along with a fish locator, the house is complete with a musical horn mounted above the driver's seat on the outside. "It comes in handy to attract a little attention when we're touring the ice," Pittrich notes.
Besides Wilk and Pittrich, Bob Lewis, Roger Smith, and John Ellis helped build the $600 shanty.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Robert Pittrich, RR 2, Box 3152, West Rutland, Vt. 05777 (ph 802 438-2295).

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1996 - Volume #20, Issue #2