New to downrigging deep water fishing

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Handsome Transom, Nov 30, 2019.

  1. Handsome Transom

    Handsome Transom Active Member GOLD Sponsor

    544
    Jan 26, 2018
    Penetanguishene Ontario Canada
    1989 SeaRay Sundancer 268 454 Bravo
    454 Mercruiser bravo drive
    So I am going to try a new experience next year and try downrigger fishing. I'm on Georgian Bay and although I do live eating bass and perch I'm wanting to try deeper water fishing next season.
    My boat is a 268 Da and I have a single 7.4 with a bravo 1 drive.
    Can I troll with my boat as is
    Do I need a kicker to push me, ie will running at trolling speed for a few hours at a time be detrimental to my engine
    Would a trolling plate be a better option
    How much of a pain are manual compared to electric riggers
    How can I best mount a pair onto my transom ? There is a teak rail atop my gunnals at the stern so unsure how or where I would mount bases.
    Can I have my riggers point outwards from the side to avoid needing long arms to get over the swim platform.?
    I plan on buying used equipment because I need to keep costs down as I'm a single parent so anything that I should be wary of or looking at to avoid buying someone else's junk?
    Are there any members close to me that would be willing to go out with me on my boat and teach me a little or a lot?
    Recommendations on brands that are good ok,or to avoid ?
    Thanks all
     
  2. Thornton69

    Thornton69 Active Member

    453
    Sep 15, 2014
    Northern BC
    1981 245 SDC
    1984 18' Valco sled
    5.7 260 Merc/ Bravo 2
    Evanrude 115/80 jet
    We do a lot of trolling on the west coast. Always use a kicker. A lot quieter, keeps hours off the main engine and allows operation from the rear of the boat. We use a 9.9 high thrust set up on a swivel mount with full remote controls which allows operation even while playing a fish. It easily pushes our boat just off idle at trolling speeds and up to 9 knots opened up. Fuel consumption isn't noticeable. The electric start models also have charging systems that keep everything topped up on the boat. The high thrust option is a must on larger boats for maneuverability.
    Everyone runs downriggers for trolling out here. We run our flashers off of the weight with the lures on quick releases. That way it is only the fish on your line after hook up. They are run out the side of the boat. The Scotty line is by far the most popular out here. Top notch (BC company) quality with a lifetime warranty to original purchaser. Manuals are alright but the electric with the swivel mount are a big step up. They allow auto retrieve while your playing the fish and swing out of the way while netting/travelling. Well worth the upgrade if it can be put in the budget.
     
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  3. play dough

    play dough Active Member

    262
    Aug 29, 2011
    Mackinaw City, Michigan
    1997 330 Sundancer, 7.4L MPI V-Drive / 2007 Crestliner 1750 Fishhawk
    7.4L MPI Mercruiser / 115 Mercury Optimax
    I ran the same boat (268DA with 7.4L B1) for several years. I don't have any photos of it rigged for fishing, but it was done the same as my 300DA was. I mounted a board that spanned the beam on the side and transom rails using machine bolts and screw on t-nuts mounted in the teak rails. This allowed easy removal. The board was 5/4 pine, stained and finished. I had a Beaver-Troll hydraulic plate (no longer available) on it but would advise a set of trolling bags from Amish Outfitters or Big Papa Sports or the use of an auxiliary outboard as opposed to any flip down plate. With the full platform on a 268DA, the outboard mounting could be difficult. Electric riggers. Manual are OK for the top 30 feet or so but cranking up 10# balls from 100 feet gets old in a hurry.

    upload_2019-11-30_13-43-18.png DSCF0975.JPG Capture.JPG
    Shows the bolts that thread into the t-nuts installed into the teak rails. Two on the side rail (left edge of photo) and probably 4 or 5 across the rear rail. The disadvantage of this system is that it blocks usage of the transom door.

    DSCF1926.JPG
    These are Big Papa Sports bags that I used on my 300DA to get to Lake Trout speeds. Very effective and easy to use. There are different sizes for different applications. Call them for proper sizing.
     
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  4. Handsome Transom

    Handsome Transom Active Member GOLD Sponsor

    544
    Jan 26, 2018
    Penetanguishene Ontario Canada
    1989 SeaRay Sundancer 268 454 Bravo
    454 Mercruiser bravo drive
    Thanks so much for all the information Awesome detail . I really appreciate it.
    Now I'll be researching ways to mount my 9.9 2 stroke and link it to steering or go with bags, ? Is there a downside to bags?
     
  5. Handsome Transom

    Handsome Transom Active Member GOLD Sponsor

    544
    Jan 26, 2018
    Penetanguishene Ontario Canada
    1989 SeaRay Sundancer 268 454 Bravo
    454 Mercruiser bravo drive
    Any ideas on mounting a kicker do it will clear my swim platform?
     
  6. play dough

    play dough Active Member

    262
    Aug 29, 2011
    Mackinaw City, Michigan
    1997 330 Sundancer, 7.4L MPI V-Drive / 2007 Crestliner 1750 Fishhawk
    7.4L MPI Mercruiser / 115 Mercury Optimax
    I resisted bags and spent hundreds on the Beaver-troll for the 268DA. After I had to slow the 30' boat down, I bought the bags and was pleasantly surprised at the ease of use and their effectiveness. I mentioned a couple quality sources. Don't skimp and try to get by with drift bags. A drift bag won't withstand the forces of trolling. As mentioned, the downside would be putting hours on the V8, but you're probably talking 100/year in Georgian Bay at most. I now own a 330DA and haven't had the urge to equip it for trolling but if/when I do, I'll use the bags.
     
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  7. Creekwood

    Creekwood Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 26, 2009
    Oakville and Georgian Bay, Ontario
    '97 330 Sundancer, Raymarine C80 suite with radar, Mercury 310 Hypalon w/8hp Yammie 2stk
    2X 454 carbs w/ vDrives
    I salmon troll most weekends on the Bay. For the past 18 years. With my 330 I troll on one engine. It’s a bit hard to get down to 2.5 mph downwind some days but it’s ok. If you want any tips for our area let me know.
     
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  8. play dough

    play dough Active Member

    262
    Aug 29, 2011
    Mackinaw City, Michigan
    1997 330 Sundancer, 7.4L MPI V-Drive / 2007 Crestliner 1750 Fishhawk
    7.4L MPI Mercruiser / 115 Mercury Optimax
    I would be interested to see how your 330 is rigged.
     
  9. Creekwood

    Creekwood Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 26, 2009
    Oakville and Georgian Bay, Ontario
    '97 330 Sundancer, Raymarine C80 suite with radar, Mercury 310 Hypalon w/8hp Yammie 2stk
    2X 454 carbs w/ vDrives
    Not quite playdough's set up!. We are limited to one rod/line per angler on Georgian Bay so no need to be able to run a big spread. I installed two 30 degree stainless rod holders in the gunwales. I use walker rod holder mounts and walker tournament downriggers. I don't really like the walkers, I would rather have Scotty's, but I got a good deal on them. They have a pivot base and long arms. I usually run them 45 degrees, not straight sideways. I can run them straight back and the wire runs just to the side of the swim platform. Here is a screen snap from a video of the starbord side.
    vlcsnap-2019-12-01-08h11m41s800.png
     
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  10. Thornton69

    Thornton69 Active Member

    453
    Sep 15, 2014
    Northern BC
    1981 245 SDC
    1984 18' Valco sled
    5.7 260 Merc/ Bravo 2
    Evanrude 115/80 jet
    Not sure what your swim platform looks like or how much room you have on it. We built a custom one with room for a large cooler. The swivel mount allows the kicker to be stowed out of the way and protected from the back. It is under cover for the winter now but here is a pick of it when first installed. The tiller arm was removed and remote controls with hydraulic steering added. The hyd steering provides quick stop to stop steering (under 2 seconds) and can be done anywhere on the boat.
    IMG_20160428_160012.jpg
     
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  11. Creekwood

    Creekwood Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 26, 2009
    Oakville and Georgian Bay, Ontario
    '97 330 Sundancer, Raymarine C80 suite with radar, Mercury 310 Hypalon w/8hp Yammie 2stk
    2X 454 carbs w/ vDrives
    A couple further thoughts:
    Two web sites with good information:

    Spoonpullers - A web site for Lake Ontario salmon fishing, but other lakes are covered too. Lots of tips, ideas, etc.
    https://www.spoonpullers.com/

    Georgian Bay Forum - Local knowledge. Not as busy a site, but its local. A lot of people fish from the main Nottawasaga side of the bay, which is a far run. I am on that site off and on.
    https://www.georgianbaymessageboard.com/

    If you go with manual downriggers, the Scotty's are nice. Troll Kijiji over winter and you may getting luck and get one used. That is what I started with. If you get really into it, you will want electric, but manual is OK to start with.

    In spring/early summer the best salmon action is in the main bay, eastern shore and around Christian Island. Not severn sound until later in the season. West side of Giant's Tomb is OK at times as is Mark's Point area and around the ferry area inside Christian.

    Late summer you probably have seen the trolling in the "hole" off Beausoleil Island. Its a staging area before they run up the rivers in late august and early September. Lots of fish, but lots of fishing pressure in a small area so they can be finicky.
     
  12. Handsome Transom

    Handsome Transom Active Member GOLD Sponsor

    544
    Jan 26, 2018
    Penetanguishene Ontario Canada
    1989 SeaRay Sundancer 268 454 Bravo
    454 Mercruiser bravo drive
    Thanks for the links to local groups and Areas to troll at different times. Kijiji will be my go to for buying gear it's been a great site for me . Our local boatjiji is not a bad site per sey however it gas its share of asshats on it that are just plain nasty to others so I avoid it and stay happy. Looking forward to the coming year now that things are mostly settled with my separation and I've found a good local childcare space for my 3 year old after more than a year looking. Pretty sure I'll go with electric rigs as I'm usually single handing everything plus 2 kids.
     
  13. Creekwood

    Creekwood Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 26, 2009
    Oakville and Georgian Bay, Ontario
    '97 330 Sundancer, Raymarine C80 suite with radar, Mercury 310 Hypalon w/8hp Yammie 2stk
    2X 454 carbs w/ vDrives
    Saw this on that facebook site. Pretty funny.

    [​IMG]
     
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  14. Golfman25

    Golfman25 Well-Known Member

    691
    Sep 12, 2009
    IL
    281
    V8
    That's too good.
     
  15. play dough

    play dough Active Member

    262
    Aug 29, 2011
    Mackinaw City, Michigan
    1997 330 Sundancer, 7.4L MPI V-Drive / 2007 Crestliner 1750 Fishhawk
    7.4L MPI Mercruiser / 115 Mercury Optimax
    My 30' boat was a serious fish catcher but I'm kind of over that phase of spending $1000s to catch a fish so rigging the 330 isn't a priority. Thanks for the info.
     
  16. Creekwood

    Creekwood Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 26, 2009
    Oakville and Georgian Bay, Ontario
    '97 330 Sundancer, Raymarine C80 suite with radar, Mercury 310 Hypalon w/8hp Yammie 2stk
    2X 454 carbs w/ vDrives
    I hear you. I question my sanity running twin 454s 20 miles each way to catch a 15lb salmon or two. But that is what we have up here these days.
     
  17. OllieC

    OllieC Active Member

    777
    Mar 11, 2013
    MinniSoCold
    Sara Belle
    2005 Weekender 215
    Mercruiser 5.0 mpi, Bravo III
    Have you tried Dipsy Magnums? I fish with those on Lake Superior with good results for trout. Me having a smaller boat, I didn't want to deal with down riggers. I also pull a bag with good results. At idle, my boat hits about 3.5-5mph - to fast for trout.
     
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  18. Creekwood

    Creekwood Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 26, 2009
    Oakville and Georgian Bay, Ontario
    '97 330 Sundancer, Raymarine C80 suite with radar, Mercury 310 Hypalon w/8hp Yammie 2stk
    2X 454 carbs w/ vDrives
    The big problem with Dipseys up here on Georgian Bay is that in many areas the depths vary radically and you need to be able to move the lures up and down in the water as you troll along. Even the thermocline varies along with the depth.
     
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