Sometimes, finding ways to push the limits of what is possible comes unexpectedly. This statement couldn't be more true than for Wade Gagnier's trolling motor down-rigger bracket, Wade's ingenious answer to the problem found in pontoon fishing. The excessive noise and turbulence of the main outboard motor made fishing all but impossible and pontoon owners were calling out for a better solution. Gagnier's ingenuity answered the call with the aluminum down-rigger bracket designed to be mounted to the pontoon directly, allowing boat owners to mount a powerful 35 hp, 4-stroke troller and stealthily fish from their larger pontoons.
Wade Gagnier, owner of Element Fabricating Inc., and inventor of the down-rigger, began his career in boating while working for his father, Mark Gagnier, at Mark's Marine located in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. During his time working for his father, Wade had a hand in a lot of different tasks ranging anywhere from work in the service department to scrubbing down boats. Over time, Wade found opportunities to do repairs to the boats that came into the store and found that not only did he enjoy it: He was good at it. Over the next few years, Wade and his father invented several ideas for a bracket that would effectively fasten a trolling motor, but the stress that was placed on their designs would prove to be too great, causing it to crack where the bracket was mounted. The years pressed on and the idea for the bracket would be put to the side to allow time for running the business. At 31 years old, Wade decided that is natural talent for repair and fabrication and inventive personality could be used to help forge his own empire, and deciding to leave his role as partial owner at Mark's Marine and take on the boating industry directly, Wade incorporated his business and Element Fabricating was born.
In 2010, as the owner of EF Inc., Wade was called on to construct a bracket that would successfully mount a motor without the stress induced fractures found in previous models. "I thought about the job and mount for a day or so and it came to me when I was looking at a soup can in the cabinet at home." Wade recalls. After a moment of serendipity, Wade discovered that the stess problems inherent in the previous bracket design could be resolved by reverse engineering the design and creating the down-rigging model, which reduced stress and direct pull on the pontoon rails. And with that, sales of the bracket began to take off. More and more, pontoon manufacturers would refer costumers to Gagnier for trolling brackets. What started as a moment of inspiration in the kitchen became a successful commodity in the world of pontoon fishing. Wade Gagnier is still hard at work, fabricating numerous additions to marine craft with a focus on meeting the needs of the boater - powered by innovation.
For more information visit www.elementfabricating.com
To view more photos that show how it attaches to the pontoon log visit https://picasaweb.google.com/ElementFabricating/PontoonBoatTrollingMotorBracket