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Let's See Your Trolling Board Setup

4/10/14 @ 8:33 PM
User since 9/27/01
I'm rigging up my boat for Lake Michigan this summer. My rig is more of a walleye boat in that it's 16.5' but deep and wide. I don't want to drill holes in my gunwales and am hoping to put eye hooks on the deck near the transom. I would use turnbuckles to secure the board snugly on the gunwales. I'd like to see how others have done this since I've seen a few rigs from a distance set up like this. What do you use for padding so you don't damage the top of the gunwales? I'm mainly looking for pictures or info on smaller boats around the size that I have.

5/1/14 @ 8:57 PM
Cat Man J.J.
User since 5/9/03
Six line two man boat, bargain basement. JJ

5/1/14 @ 5:13 AM
User since 4/5/11
Easily runs 9 lines. Just added a 6hp kicker this year.

5/1/14 @ 5:11 AM
User since 4/5/11
Easily runs 9 lines

4/26/14 @ 8:59 PM
User since 6/24/09
Nice set up luckylou

4/14/14 @ 4:04 PM
User since 2/28/09
The track system is what came on my boat when I bought it . If I had the choice on setting up a boat with a budget the track system isn't the one . It is costly and the market on used items is pretty limited . BUT it is really nice to use . I have gone half why in the middle and use the track system but make my own components. 3.5" x 1/8" metal fits in my track perfectly and with a tapped set screw it dos to move a bit .

4/14/14 @ 9:38 AM
User since 9/27/01
I appreciate everyone's advice. If I were setting this boat up to primarily fish salmon, I would consider a track system. I know that those are slick. This boat is mainly going to be used for walleye and perch on the bay. My salmon setup is fairly limited (one downrigger and 5 rods with dipseys and leadcore). I already have removable rod holders that have flush mounts on the gunwales so they'd be in the way of a track system. I like those holders for my walleye gear but want to run Tite Lock adjustable aluminum holders for my salmon gear. I still think that a board would suit my needs for the limited number of times that I'll actually use it.

One other point is that I'm looking to do this on the cheap since I don't plan to target salmon a lot. I can't justify dropping hundreds of dollars on a track system that wouldn't get used much. If I were going to use the aluminum rod holders for everything, I'd have to drop another $100 to get enough to run all of my walleye gear that way.

Again, I agree that a track system would be nice but I can't justify it. I'd still like to see what others have done to mount boards to their boats with limited drilling into the gunwales.

4/13/14 @ 10:29 PM
User since 4/27/08
I recommend a track system, one track system on each side and you can run multiple set ups on. I have it and like it a lot, 2 triple trees, some single rod holders, swivel mounts for my riggers and I can add and remove holders as needed for what species i am fishing for.

4/11/14 @ 3:11 PM
User since 8/25/11
Highly recommend moving away from a "trolling board" There's really very little reason to use one anymore...even if you are running 4 downriggers. I'd rather spend money on riggers with long booms than money, time, effort, clumsy-ness on the board.

I previously ran 4 riggers on a board. The board got in the way of netting fish, limited my access to the motors, and really didn't afford me any positives.

I only run 2 riggers now, but even with 3 or 4, I'd run them on tracks on gunwales. You can easily achieve enough spread - either with long booms, or by angling your rod holders so they pull the release away from other lines.

I run 2 riggers. I run my dipsies right off of the double downrigger rod holder (huge reason I love Big Jon), and I then run rod trees for core/copper.

4/11/14 @ 9:31 AM
User since 3/30/04
I have the same kind of operation. If you can I agree and spend the extra money for the tracks. You will never regret it.

I have a board and for the most part it does not get in the way. I can also take it on and off in the time it takes to loosen 4 screws.

I have 2 bolts on each side that drop in like pins into holes in the gunwale. Lock nuts from under the gunwale hold it in place. The holes are not big enough that I curse them early season walleye fishing when riggers are not on the boat. I forget they are there.

Also my riggers will come out with the pull of a pin from the the board and the bases they sit in so no riggers and fishing with the board in place takes seconds. Its an old school riviera setup that I didn't create but its basically a pipe sitting in another mounted pipe and I drilled 2 holes so the riggers can sit straight out the back for running and then sit at 45 degrees for fishing.

Not pretty but the fish don't know the difference. Notice in the one picture I just pulled the pin and removed the second rigger because I was fishing solo and it was just in the way for netting while not being used.

4/11/14 @ 8:35 AM
Fish Hound
User since 1/29/02
I agree, trolling boards are old school but it also depends what you have that you want to add. If it's a pair of riggers, install a 6" piece of tracking on the boat. When the riggers are in great and when they are not slide a piece of step pack in them and it looks super clean.

No worrying about where to store a board when it's not on the boat either.

A 6" track is about $25, you can get the factory aluminum backing plate for about another $10. The risers you would need depend on whether or not your riggers already have swivels. There is a set of 6" swivel riser on another site rite nor for $150. For a bit over $200 you have the Cadillac of systems.

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