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The Big Tuna is a great rig that is ready to fish straight from the factory, but in the last year I have slowly modified mine into the ultimate fishing machine. While I do use the Big Tuna in a tandem configuration, I mainly use it as a solo paddle for its stability, ability to carry a lot of gear and the Tuna Tank.

I hate dragging a minnow bucket behind my yak so I knew I would be converting my Tuna Tank into a live well. I determined the size of my drill bit, by comparing it to a minnow bucket in my garage. Once I found the correct size, I drilled a pattern of holes in each side of the tank. I did not drill any holes in the front or rear of the tank because I did not want too much current flowing through the tank while I paddle, that could damage fragile bait. I also did not drill any holes in the bottom, allowing the tank to keep bait in water even when I am portaging from one body of water to another. Next the interior of the tank got a good coat of Polydip coating; the white background makes it a lot easier to see the bait.

The biggest change to the tank is my new clear plexi-glass lid. Several of the guides in Florida swear that bait last longer in a tank with a clear lid. They believe that natural light keep the bait calm. I used ¼ plexi-glass with stainless steel hinges. I used the factory lid as a template and a Dremel tool to cut the glass. I finished off the project with some weather stripping to keep the lid quiet. The tank works great, easily keeping bait alive all day.

When the Big Tuna is rigged for a single paddler you have a huge tank well behind the seat. This space is perfect for a 35 quart cooler. The cooler is great for keeping drinks and fish on ice or it can be used to store tackle. I modified my cooler with a 3 rod holder across the back and two YakAttack gear tracks, one on each side. I use the gear tracks to mount additional rod holders and my GoPro. To make the cooler sit level I use two pieces of foam (one on each side of the rib that runs down the center of the well. To secure the cooler I mounted a strap holder on each side. (This is the same cooler that I use on my SUPerFISHal.)


Two more YakAttack gear tracks and a mighty mount allow me several options for additional rod holders and a Visilight. The Big Tuna comes with a drift chamber, but that didn’t really work for the type of anchoring I do (saltwater with strong currents) so I mounted a rear anchor trolley on the port side.

The finishing touch is my EcoxGear ECOROX waterproof Blue Tooth speaker. The speaker mounts to a Ram Mount 1 inch ball. This is great for some tunes on a long paddle home.

The Big Tuna is an awesome fishing machine, use your imagination and trick yours out.