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Sophomore season. Rigging and setup. Please advise!


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This is techically my third year fishing Salmon. The first year was in a friend's boat and last year was the first in my boat. We made great progress last year but met a couple amazing guys at the dock in Algoma and I attribute everything to them. Jim and Dave, if God is still a fisherman, I'm sure you have a special place in heaven.

I have a 19.5 ft starcraft starfire. I got a great CL bargain on 4 older downriggers with VERY large booms. They're mounted on a 2x6 and ratchet strapped between two cleats. Retracted all the way in I think they are 4-5 ft. extended they are 8-9 ft. I used a eagle claw recessed rod holder for dipsies last year, but one broke. I just got a spool of 150 lb braid to redo all the metal cable. We lost a couple balls last year unfortunately.

For rods, I now have 4 8'6" Okuma combos 2 are copper/lead labeled and one states a downrigger. I have 6 lighter gander combos as well. I'm running 20 lb biggame on everything.

I've fished out of algoma in July the last few trips and I'm adding a late June trip this year.

The questions:

Any suggestions for a different rod holder that won't be too permanent/prominent? This is a musky/walleye/family boat most of the year and I don't really see a huge tree rod holder tree fitting in all year round.

I'm a little confused on which of the following to add next: 1-2 SWR rods, copper, lead, planer boards etc.

I've heard enough about the SWR and had a lot of action in our friend's boat that I would like to try it. If I add one should I add two? Would those be the outside lines or inside lines?

Thanks for the feedback! I'm glad I found the forum this year before the trip.

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For setting up some new rod holders, I would recommend using tracks if you don't want them permanently mounted. I fish from a Sea Ray Sundancer and when the rodholders and riggers are off you hardly notice the tracks. I love them and there is a myriad of choices for setups in them ie single holders, dual holders, trees, etc. you can get them from Cannon, Traxstech, Burt's to name a few.

If you're looking to add lines I would highly recommend copper. Copper puts a ton of fish in the boat for me. The rods you mentioned having work great for copper and a convector-55 from Okuma is a good reel for longer copper setups (300' is a great producer for me).

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SWR is usually run off a downrigger, but could be run as a 2 or 3 color on a board as an outside line.

I would probably start with the SWR and a 150 copper. Then go to more and/or longer copper as you get comfortable running it.

Tracks are definitely the way to go.

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I would put everything on tracks, including the riggers. They will be much quicker and sturdier. Berts or Traxtech are both good options, and you can use the same holders for your walleye and muskie fishing.

I would add lead to your set up. Depending on how deep you fish a 5 color and a 10 color run on planer boards would be a great place to start.

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If your only running divers and riggers then id say get a pair of longlines.

mabey a 300' 45lb to get deep and a 7 or 10 color lead for a bit shallower in the column. Others may be of better help on which setups to get just my 2 cents.

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Thanks for the warm welcome! What a great group of anglers!

The last two years have been a little warmer. But the best depth to start at was 160-200. Let's assume the same conditions just for reference.

So, hypothetically if I was to run one SWR rig, 3 normal riggers, 1 copper, 1 leadcore, and the two dipsys. Would I run the SWR on a outside rigger ~80 ft down, the two middle riggers deeper at 100/110 with spoons 20 ft back, the other outside rigger ~90 shallower with a flasher/fly 30' back, and then run the copper/leadcore on boards to the outside and lastly the dipsies, correct?

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I would check the port reports to determine your starting depth. And determine how deep you fish based on marks and temps.

I usually run SWR off deepest rigger and boards outside dipseys. Your pattern may work, but since I've never tried it I can't tell about possible tangles.

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Sounds like you got the right idea. I would definately pick up a 45 lb copper in the 200 to 300 foot range. That rig will put alot of fish in your boat.

Planer boards on the outside, dipseys in side of that and then your rigger. Run your SWR as your deepest rigger wherever you decide to put it.

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