Need Trolling Rod Advice
Downrigger rods are bent nearly 170° or so (loaded) most of the time they’re attached to the release, loading shortens lack line on a release maintaining hook setting. So an 8’-6” rod in a medium heavy rating with a line rating of 15 – 30 lbs works well. I always like a firmer rod to control the fish when you get them near the boat and have to steer the fish around downriggers and other obstacles. A 12 – 20 lbs rated rod just bend too easily with fish over 10#s.
Driver rods need to be longer than a downrigger rod, the extra length helps in two ways. First you’re able to get the diver further away from the boat to start with. Secondly the leader length between the diver and bait or attractor is generally kept at the overall length of the rod. So a 9’-6” rod in medium heavy rating with a line rating of 15 – 30 lbs works well.
Planer rods need to be stiffer than a downrigger rod because of the weight and pull of an in-line planer board. Reeling in an in-line planer board IMHO is easier with a rod with a strong backbone. Fighting an in-line planer board and a fish is much easier with a stout rod. So a 8’ rod in heavy rating with a line rating of 15 – 40 lbs works well.
See the attached photo.