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  1. #1
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    Default Lake Erie Downrigger Questions

    I've been Walleye fishing with my father and son the past 4 years. Mostly dipsy divers, planer boards, jets etc. This year I would like to pick up a couple of downriggers. Plan on purchasing 2 Cannon Mag10 STX's. I'm new to downrigger fishing and have read quite a bit with regards to choosing the correct ball. Fish mainly the Dunkirk to Sturgeon Point area. My concern is downrigger blowback especially when I fish the deeper areas of the lake. We may even try for Steelhead and Salmon on Lake Ontario where this may come into more of a factor. I'm just trying to purchase the right ball set up right from the beginning. Any recommendations on weight, style or manufactures would be helpful?

    Also thinking of spending the money to buy a Fishhawk X4D. Interested to hear your thoughts on the Fishhawk.

    Unfortunately I don't have the time to fish every day and prefer to have my son figure the water out on his own. Want to give him a couple of new tools to use - he seems to get a kick out of putting dad and I on fish. Any info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    I use a torpedo style weight on my downrigger. I don't think you will need to worry too much about blowback because the deepest I have fished on erie is 80-100 ft and as long as you have 10 lb or so weights. Its also nice to have some smaller weights for shallower fishing (browns in spring and early walleyes or inland lakes). A guy on another fishing site makes the torpedos and they are great weights at a good price. They are not coated or anything when I get them but I spray them with the electrical tape in a can, black. I think they are 10-12 lb and have little blowback. I use blacks releases as they can be adjusted easily.

    I have a depth raider on my boat, came with it when I bought it and like it. I believe I have caught more fish with its help and am planning on upgrading to a fishhawk when I get some money saved up. Biggest difference is that the fishhawk does not need coated cable on the downrigger as there are minor issues with the cable.

  3. #3
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    I used 10# weights when I fished the western basin. but when I moved my fishing to the central basin I switched to a 13# pancake weight. I only fish them 50' to 60' down the blowback is minimal.

    as for releases I love the chamberlain release. its built on the blacks release but has 2 adjustments. it has rod tension adjustment and lure tension adjustment. the lure tension can be set light so small fish will trip the release, a must have for walleye fishing.

  4. #4
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    I use 10 or 12 pound balls minimal blow back usually for me . I'll use 10 # down to 50 ft and 12# deeper . I avoid the pancake style as per if they get out of tune / not straight they tend to wobble all over . The torpedo weights are the best on the market in my opinion and will give next to zero blowback and work great . I like the Blacks releases simple one screw adjustment and perch can even trip them. I run 100 to 150 ft back behind the weights with my baits and I get quite a few eyes off the riggers. If you need them or have more questions call Jim @ 716 796 5372.
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  5. #5
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    Thank you all for the information. I would like to go with the torpedos. I noticed several different styles on line. Which ones would you recommend and where can I buy the Torpedos? I did reach out to a guy forum name Ozzys Obsession for the Torpedos not sure if he still sells them.

    Is this the Black's Downrigger Release? Do you prefer release clip or release clip with snap? http://www.cabelas.com/product/Black...ses/737049.uts

  6. #6
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    I agree with Bailey. Call Jim at Ultimate Outdoors of WNY. He is a rep for Torpedo and can get you anything that you want. 716 796 5372.
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  7. #7
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    check out ebay for weights. check our downriggerrelease.com for the chamberlain release.

  8. #8
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    you can contact troutman87 on lake ontario united for torpedo style downrigger weights. They are unpainted lead, reasonably priced, and work well. He makes a 12 lb weight that runs great for me. He's in Watkins Glen, and will ship them to you. If you want, you can PM me for his address, or just contact him on that forum.

    I run a depth raider, and like it..... I had some "Customer Service" issues with Fish Hawk in the distant past, and never really got over it.... guys love them now, but I'm holding a grudge.

    Also, look at Chamberlain releases. If you fish walleyes, and will be into some "trash fish", you can set the Chamberlains to release on the smallest of fish......

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    Thanks for the info everyone. Great info regarding the ball/torpedo's, releases and Fishhawk. After a few off line conversations leaning towards purchasing the Scotty 1116 Propack's electrics instead of the Cannon Mag10 STX electrics. Scotty's seems to be easier to maintain, less chance of electronic issues(switches boards etc), auto stop with and without braid, more control of speed when dropping the ball. Scotty's seem to be more mechanical than electronic. Sure both will work. Do you guys have any input on the Cannon vs Scotty scenario.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tommy View Post
    Thanks for the info everyone. Great info regarding the ball/torpedo's, releases and Fishhawk. After a few off line conversations leaning towards purchasing the Scotty 1116 Propack's electrics instead of the Cannon Mag10 STX electrics. Scotty's seems to be easier to maintain, less chance of electronic issues(switches boards etc), auto stop with and without braid, more control of speed when dropping the ball. Scotty's seem to be more mechanical than electronic. Sure both will work. Do you guys have any input on the Cannon vs Scotty scenario.
    I run older Scottys and like them alot. When you watch the Pacific salmon fishers on the west coast they all fish Scottys. They use them over Cannon for a reason

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