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Picked up two at WestMarine the other day, made by SeaStriker. These are supposed to function in place of an inline sinker. The "plate" is only about 1.5" by 2.5", and the initial set-up makes it dive deep. Then when there's a fish on (or probably grass, too) the weight is supposed to flip the plate up to allow a light, resistance-free retrieve. Looks slick and cost less than $10 apiece, but I haven't talked to anyone that has actually used them. I hope to give them a "wet" run this weekend, but thought I'd see if anyone's had any major issues, i.e.: failure to convert with a fish on (uh, just in case I can't find any fish to volunteer for my experiment........)
 

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Crabber- these downplaners have been around for a long time. I have had good results with them, especially fish'n for spainiards. ya need a stout rod to pull them and make sure ya stagger them good. Put your #1s out farthest and #3s closest to the boat.
 

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They work great in the summer when trolling for spanish mackeral and blues. You don't want to put too heavy of a lure behind them, or anything that might pull back on it, like a crankbait. Usually small spoons or bucktails.

Good luck,
Mike
 

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The planers work great; however, they perform best when trolled faster normal spring time rockfish speeds. The planers tend to perform better when trolled 3knots or faster, up to 6-7kts.

This is not to say that you won't or can't catch rockfish trolling faster. I have caught many rockfish trolling 5+ kts using planers.

They are great, but like previously stated they don't work very well with heavy lures. I only use spoons with my planers.
 

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We mostly use them for trolling for tuna, bonita, albacore or faster trolling than stripers.. Bad part about them is if you have a missed strike, you have to pull in to reset.
 

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Your life is about to change for the better, my friend.:D

I use them religiously, especially in the Summer for Rock, Blues, Spanish....even Trout (well, a couple, anyway). As others have said, the trick is to use spoons or other light lures. What I like best about them is the ability to use lighter outfits, actually feel the fight of even 18"-20" fish, and keep the lure closer to the boat. I use 20# outfits with 30# braid and typically set the line 45-55 feet back on one side and 55-70 feet back on the other (my other two lines are farther back and use 4-6 oz inlines). I also use 25 foot mono leaders (50#).

My favortie lures are a #17 or #18 Tony spoons (silver or "Chesapeake Bay" pattern, which is chart/gold) or, in the Fall, a 9/0 C.A. When the Spanish run, pick up the speed and use a #00 Clark or Drone (and keep the line close to the boat wake....no farther out than 45 feet).


P.S. - the box says that the planer dives to about twice the amount of line out. I have found that to be untrue. Speed obviously makes some difference, but at about 3.5kts, my #1 planer dives to about 15 ft. with 45 feet of line out and 20 ft. with 55 feet out. At 70 feet, it is at about 27/28 feet.
 

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We mostly use them for trolling for tuna, bonita, albacore or faster trolling than stripers.. Bad part about them is if you have a missed strike, you have to pull in to reset.
I have found that if I simply dip the rod quickly (creating a second or two of slack in the line), then they reset themselves.
 

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Like others have said, they work better at high speeds and can't pull bulky lures. I have never had a problem resetting them, just lift the rod high, and drop it towards the water. When there is slack in the line, it will reset itself.
 

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When I use them -I set them with the rod in the holder.The planer has a good bit of pull as it "digs" down.Keep note of when they hit on the bottom-this will help you fine tune the amount of line to let out.Great to use when alot of boats are fishing an area because you can keep your lines close to your boat. Skip
 

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Like the others said...you can reset the planer w/o having to bring it in. Simply pull the rod tip toward the front of the boat and in a quick motion point it toward the back of the boat. The momentary slack in the line will allow the planer to reset.

Jay
 

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Yep it's true. These things do work well and I use them on almost every trip. Goose 70 has it right, I use the same set up with VERY good results.
When your done for the day and retriveing the planers I do want to add that they can "pop" up at you or your hull and give you a mark to remember it by, so what I do is pull in 4-5 feet of line in my hand and it go and pull it back in quickly with a jerking motion and that tends to "trip " the line.
I also was on a NC gulf charter trip many years ago and they used them as hand lines. This works great on the bay. Use 50 feet of 80lb mono to the planer add a swivel and then 30 feet of 15-20lb mono to your lure. Note the angle of the untriped line, and thats it. Now you have to pull in the fish with your hands! I like to use gloves ( after many cuts).
Have Fun!!!!!!!!
 
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