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Thread: Downrigger Rod/Reels for Valdez Silvers

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    Member Whelenator's Avatar
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    Post Downrigger Rod/Reels for Valdez Silvers

    Hi folks. I have been searching and reading all morning about downriggers and found some good info. I would like to know what kind/brand/style of fishing rods and reels you all recommend for downrigging for silvers out of Valdez? I have 2 of the Kenai Special Lamiglass 8 foot rods with Penn SSG Spinning reels (Kenai and Russian) but was warned they will get damaged using them for downriggers. Ok, so what setups are you guys using? I had purchased 2 of the Grigg baitcaster style rods from Sportsman's a few months ago with the idea of finding some reels on sale and using my Cabelas points. BUT, I just lost my job and am trying to be a bit more careful about money... last question, can I use the Penn spinfishers for the downriggers or will the baitcaster style levelwind reels work that much better? Thanks for any advice..

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    Member c6 batmobile's Avatar
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    I think the bait caster will probably work better but if you're short on cash why not make what you have work.

    If it were me I would make a small notch in the down rigger tube so that the spinning reel would sit upright and not flip over. A lot of guys just use the down rigger/trolling method to find the fish and then mooch anyway. Im cheap and fish on a budget too. I try to make what I have work for me so I dont have to continuously buy new gear.
    Makin fur fins and feathers fly.

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    I can't imagine why the spinning gear wouldn't work...I use them all the time.


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    Member Grayling Slayer's Avatar
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    The spinning reels work, but bait casters work better. I would not worry about it at all.
    "I'd rather be fishing!"

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    Member coho slayer's Avatar
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    I concur. I use almost exclusively spinning gear. I have one old baitcaster that I throw in more to mix it up than anything else.

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    Member Whelenator's Avatar
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    Thanks for the replies folks.I ended up buying 2 shimano levelwind reels. $69.99 at SW. I would love to have a couple of those Avets but not for now. I didn't buy the reels that I really should have but under the circumstances I think they will be ok what little I'll get to fish them this year.

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    Would those be the TR 100s? If so you just bought one of the classic reels for downrigger trolling and mooching. They require almost zero maintenance and have a smooth drag and a loud, stiff clicker. I have a bunch of them. Every couple of years I think about upgrading, but I have yet to see a reel that offers a better performance to price ratio for salmon trolling/mooching.

    Big_E

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    Member Cap'n Ron's Avatar
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    Those kids in your avatar picture going with you?? Hope so...and they will have more fun if you mooch after locating some fish; put a small sinker, I like 1-2oz banana sinkers with the swivel on one end and the beads on the other, then maybe a 3' leader with a single hook through the jaw and out the head of a small trolling herring. I recommend against the double hook mooching/trolling rigs, too many of the second hooks go into hands, not fish! When the fish are hitting, you may miss a few without the second hook, but you will get plenty, and more safely. Kids like mooching, jigging the rod a bit with the rig down about 30' gives them something to do, and much more fun for you too than reeling in a fish the boat caught on a downrigger!

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    Member coho slayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cap'n Ron View Post
    Those kids in your avatar picture going with you?? Hope so...and they will have more fun if you mooch after locating some fish; put a small sinker, I like 1-2oz banana sinkers with the swivel on one end and the beads on the other, then maybe a 3' leader with a single hook through the jaw and out the head of a small trolling herring. I recommend against the double hook mooching/trolling rigs, too many of the second hooks go into hands, not fish! When the fish are hitting, you may miss a few without the second hook, but you will get plenty, and more safely. Kids like mooching, jigging the rod a bit with the rig down about 30' gives them something to do, and much more fun for you too than reeling in a fish the boat caught on a downrigger!
    Completely agree. I troll to find the fish, then switch to mooching. Nothing quite as fun as feeling the fish hit and setting the hook yourself. Honestly find trolling extremely boring and unsatisfying, though if all I'm trying to do is fill the freezer I will do it.

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    Member Bsj425's Avatar
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    This is assuming the silvers show up in Valdez this year if it is anything like last year it will be terrible. Hopefully that come and we all have tight lines

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    Member coho slayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bsj425 View Post
    This is assuming the silvers show up in Valdez this year if it is anything like last year it will be terrible. Hopefully that come and we all have tight lines
    Yes. I'm just going to run on the assumption that this year will be better because it can't really get worse than last year. I got skunked, and it wasn't for lack of trying. Early reports are showing good numbers of silvers in other areas, so I'm hoping the trend continues.

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    Member Whelenator's Avatar
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    Thanks again for the replies guys. To answer a couple questions my kids are still just a little small for fishing especially in the salt. They are 2 and 3. They have the interest bit not the ability yet. We took them to tangle lakes the other weekend and I basically had to catch their fish for them but I think they are hooked!
    my reels are TR-200 G,s
    They seem pretty nice.

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