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Big Planer Board help

1/15/19 @ 1:31 PM
User since 3/25/10

I've been trolling the big lake for a few years now and slowing upgrading as I go.  I currently have a set of dual planer (1" x 6" x 24") boards now, but they can barely handle 2-3 lines with snap weights.  I'm looking to build some new, more agressive ones, but in the hours of research, can't seem to find "the best" option.  Some of the questions I have are:

- 2 vs 3 board?

- why does 2 board desigen have staggered back and 3 have even back?

 - 6", 8", 10" or 12" boards?  (does it matter if 2 or 3 planer design?)

- how much does the length determine the pull of the boards?

- why do 2 planer designs have adjustable spots for the eye bolt but the 3 planer designs don't?

- why do 2 board designs have rods in various locations, while 3 board design has rods located down the center of each board?

- why wouldn't everyone want to use the hardest pulling board?

- anyone have plans that I can use to make my new boards?

Thanks for any help.

~ Fishrepellant


10/25/20 @ 6:20 PM
Fish Hound
User since 1/29/02

Use Sams Pro releases and trip your boards. Don't fight the board, fight the fish.

10/25/20 @ 4:31 PM
User since 10/10/20

Hey lucklou, 

How do you keep the TX44's from diving and the braid slipping? I've had a few dive running 8-12 oz pump handles. Then I wrap the braid around the clip to prevent slippage.


10/25/20 @ 10:35 AM
MEMBER since 2/16/04

L U E's boards look a lot like the ones from plans posted in an old Great Lakes Angler magazine. Only fished once with "skis" on a chartered trip on lake Huron. The guide deployed a bunch of lead core lines off them and we caught mostly lakers and a couple kings. There was a half circle of tin nailed to the back of the rig (much like the back fin on a church in-line board), because if the boards do flip, they will crash all of the way back to the other side causing havoc. The "bent can lid" will let the boards dig down and back around, righting them, preventing this. The captain praised this small added change as a big gear and time saver.

10/19/20 @ 5:56 PM
L U E 42
L U E 42
User since 7/13/09

As a convert to inline boards, I have a home-made set of dual larger boards that I don't use anymore. They plane out almost too steeply. I had a hard time getting the releases to slide out, but a higher mast would have helped.  You are welcome to try them, buy them or just copy the design. I am also in Manitowoc.  IM me on Lake link if you are interested. 

8/4/20 @ 10:02 AM
User since 3/25/10

Thanks for the suggestion; that's actually how I set all of my rigs .  I feel I can always tighten the drag if/when needed, but have lost too many fishes because the drag was a little too tight.  

I guess I was just shocked that Walleyes pull the board back enough to notice, but fish the same size and bigger don't.  Wonder if that is because I have so much more (and heavier) line out?  It's really a pain when the board doesn't drop back and trying to check the line/reel in a fish.

8/3/20 @ 9:59 AM
Red Rider
User since 6/26/01

Set your drags just so they hold with the clicker on. On a turn the outside boards will click with the speed change.  Vary rare to not detect a hit.

8/3/20 @ 9:51 AM
User since 3/25/10

Made it out to the big lake out of Manitowoc again this weekend.  Left the big mast/planers home and tried out my new Offshore SST boards - 2 and then an additional 2 standard boards on both sides as well.  I ran 3, 5, 7, 10 lead on one side and 100, 150, 200, 300 on the other.  Started out with the small boards out far (thinking they would handle the lesser weights better) and big boards in close on each side, but outside boards were running so far back that they were almost behind inside boards.  Switched the boards and then the outside (bigger) ran up appropriately, while leaving the inside (smaller) boards dragging a little further back; I was mildly OK with this and thought about just buying more SST boards to have them all the same/running up.  PROBLEM:  couldn't tell when any fish were on!  We would occasionally check lines and a few times we would see a board just "dragging a little"...when we pulled in lines, fish ranging from 2-12 lbs would be on there!  Biggest problem was trying to get in boards without tangling up with other boards on the way in. (really couldn't believe none of the fish would pull the boards back)  

I have a lot of experience using smaller boards for walleyes and big mast/boards for Salmonoids, but was quite disappointed in my new adventure.  Considering going back to the big boards, but really did like the extra boat space and speed of deploying gear at set up.  Any suggestions?

3/30/19 @ 8:46 PM
Stosh The Ogre
Stosh The Ogre
User since 3/29/16

I am a fellow Big Board fan, and have fished most brands and home made boards for 25 years now. I currently run dual keel Otter Boats up until the point when I start setting 300 coppers or longer for kings.

I typically run 3 lines per side up to 10 color or 200 copper and have developed ways to easily redeploy the lines to keep from tangling or reeling in lines to deploy an outer line (I use the chute space and a good crew). The fun of popping coho and steelhead out wide on clean light tackle far out weighs using the inline boards for me early to mid-season.

When it gets to deepp kings, you need to keep sure seperation between the long coppers, wire dipseys, and riggers, so I then move to the 44 size large inline boards to deliver the goods to the 20+ size kings. Less it usually more during this time of the year and I tend to run 8 lines widely spread, with all below 60fow.

I have alos fished with both deployed at the same time and found that switching over when you are targeting fish below 45fow has worked best overall.

By the way...the bigger, longer, and more bords, the more you can pull. I went to the dual keel Otter Boats and I love them. the down side is they are priced way too high. If I had any sense I would call China and have them made for $20 a piece and retire.

2/8/19 @ 9:29 AM
Grey Beard
User since 1/27/02

I'm playing snowbird in FL so have not checked this thread for awhile.

Many years ago I gave up on the big planer with mast system for a number of reasons: crawling out on the deck to hook up the boards, board storage and boards tipping over in heavy seas and then they zoom over to the opposite side for a massive tangle, lots of releases and the mess of rubber bands left on the reel. Another mast issue is rotating various lengths of lead core after a strike. Running a 2 color inside of longer lead cores can lead to tangles. Enough come with lead core so best to keep it manageable. 

I find in-line planers a much simpler system to run. The relatively new Off Shore OR-37 SST pro mag addressed the nead for modification by coming with the adjustable OR-18 release on the front and OR-16 red release with the pin in the pad on the rear. They track very well and I use them on lead core >7 color and all my coppers up to 300'. My crew threatened mutiny if I added any  coppers over 300'. Honestly hardly ever run 10 colors of lead anymore letting the 150' copper on a OR-37 cover that zone.

Grey Beard

1/20/19 @ 7:43 PM
User since 8/25/11

I use the church walleye boards for all leadcore. 

i go the thx 44s for 225copper or bigger. 

so many options, tackle, and modifications out there. My personal favorite is the church boards out of the box. I can’t believe how much some guys spend on boards + lockjaw clips + custom backend OR19 clips + putting in new screws, etc. 

keep it simple in my opinion. Haven’t had any issues with tangles. I often keep all coppers on one side of the boat and lead on the other. If I’m running a 225, 300, 450 copper they are all on the same side of boat and all on TX44s

i try (if possible with crew and water column conditions) to keep big boards on their own side because they can plane to side more

regardless of the board tip is to run braid from the rod tip to the board (less wind drag, really helps keep boards planing)

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