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Planer board reel height

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Just now getting my big board set up for next season. Finally got materials around today to build a set since I have all next week off.

Question: If I go with a rail mount reel, I should be able to get about 5 feet of height above the waterline. Is that going to be enough?

I do have other options if I have to, just seems rail mount would be easiest.

Thanks

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The higher the better especially if you want to run the boards out quite far. When I used to run big boards I had a tether line attached loosely to the tow lines to bring it down and in to attach the releases and lines. A boat hook can also be used for this task. The reason you need the height is to keep the tow lines out of the water especially in rough conditions. :)

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If your boat has a spot to mount some pulley wheels higher than the rail to route the board line through before it heads out to the boards, it might help. That lets you mount the reels in a spot. that is easier to deploy/retrieve the boards from but still gain the height to keep the tow line out of the water. Like Frank says, the higher the line is on the boat the better.

When I had my planners rigged on my walkaround cuddy with the pulleys it let me move the line about 3' higher than without the pulleys. While I could have mounted a mast on the bow, getting around the cabin was still difficult and not really safe -- creep/crawl around was probably a better description. I used pulleys from some old Big Jon riggers I got at a yard sale. The pulley mounting location also moved the attachment spot on the boat about 7' further forward on the boat which helps with getting the boards to also run further forward i the water relative to the boat. I used a gaff hook to pull the line down to attach the releases.

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You want it as high as possible. I have the Cisco Electric Planer Reels on my boat. I have the reels mounted on the rocket launcher and the pulleys up near the front of the grab rails on top of the hardtop. Makes for a nice setup and with as hard as the Amish Outfitters Redwood Boards I run pull, it's really the only way to go as it's almost impossible to reel those in with manual reels.

Without the hardtop I would have a mast at least 6' high mounted near the bow.

Reels mounted on the Launcher

P1020855.jpg

Pulley on the grab rail

P4120008.jpg

Tim

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im also looking at setting up lines. think im going to mount electric wheels to my radar arch and buy pipe to fit in a rod holder so it can be easily extended or removed. any leads as to pulleys i can use without ruining good pair of downriggers to get them. or does anyone foresee a problem with idea. ive never run em so just speculation here.

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Thanks for all the info, ideas and pic's. I suspected I would have to go higher like Aaron and Frank recommended.

Like Ryan mentioned I want it to be convenient and out of the way on my walk around cuddy and didn't really want to mount a mast in the way up front because we use that area a lot. Using the rail and putting pulleys higher would be just the ticket! The ones you have, Tim, on your grab rail is slick. And the electrics are sweet, too. I've actually got 3 Big Jon manuals I'm not using. I might have to convert a couple to planer reels with a little modification.

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The Big Jon pulleys that they use on the top of their planer board masts are $27 each. Fish307.com lists them (http://www.fish307.com/BigJonReplacementParts-KT3049-5SpokeTipPulleyw/SwivelRetainer.aspx). Basically these are what I used off the old riggers I had... and about the same cost.

I might have a couple of them out in the spare parts box. If you think these would work, let me know and I'll go look. Would sell for a whole lot less than Fish307 (ie: cheap!)

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Well, I got my board done over the holidays. When I get my boat uncovered I've got some reel and pulley rigging to do. Can't wait until spring to try it out!

<a  href=%7Boption%7Dhttp://www.greatlakesfisherman.com/gallery/files/3/0/0/8/20131203_115221.jpg' alt='20131203_115221.jpg'>

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