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  • trolling plate

    Has anyone ever used a trolling plate to slow down their boat from trolling and how well did it work?
    I heard that the happiest 2 days of owning a boat are the day you buy it and the day you sell it, glad to say that doesn't apply to me!
    12' Mahogany Flat Skiff
    2011 Bayliner 185
    My 1980 Silverline Nantucket 17VBR

  • #2
    Re: trolling plate

    I have a Troll-a-Matic on my 140HP Mercruiser and it works OK to slow the boat, not as slow as I would like, but much better than without it. This plate is spring loaded and always in the down position (actually about 35-40* when the engine is idling in gear) so I loose some steering control idling and while backing, I have to over compensate while turning.

    There are other plates that lock into the down position and would probably slow the boat even more, but I didn't like them as you can break them up if you forget to raise the plate before powering up, broken pins, bent plate. Never had one of those, but read some reviews complaining about this,,, which steered me away from them. I'd think this type of plate would have even worse forward steering control since the plate is locked straight down, instead of being pushed up a bit.
    2001 Crestliner SuperHawk 1800, Mercruiser 140HP
    2007 Tracker 1436 jon boat, 7.5HP Force

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    • #3
      Re: trolling plate

      Thanks, you've answered my concerns. I didn't want to spend $160 for something that doesn't work. I'm buying one that operates at 90 degrees when engaged and if I have trouble steering I'll cut a 'V' in the center. Remembering to lift it before I power up will be an issue, but I'll deal with it.
      I heard that the happiest 2 days of owning a boat are the day you buy it and the day you sell it, glad to say that doesn't apply to me!
      12' Mahogany Flat Skiff
      2011 Bayliner 185
      My 1980 Silverline Nantucket 17VBR

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: trolling plate

        The lock-down versions usually have a hole in the center. Directional control in forward is fairly good.

        The "automatic" one (I have one) didn't do very well until I added some additional springs (there are positions for four springs) and it does OK. When I need to troll faster than my 42# MinnKota (or the battery is dead!) I use the plate. If the plate doesn't slow me enough, I lower the Minnkota and lock it sideways which adds to my drag. That usually covers every speed I need.
        Clean feet are happy feet; same for boats.
        1964 MFG Niagara Deluxe
        1969 MFG Edinboro

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        • #5
          Re: trolling plate

          might be happyer with 2 drift socks, one on each side.............................................. ........................
          sigpic

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          • #6
            Re: trolling plate

            Originally posted by evinice66 View Post
            might be happyer with 2 drift socks, one on each side.............................................. ........................


            A pair of 12' ropes with a 5 gallon bucket on each rope. Each bucket has about a dozen 9/16" holes drilled into the bottom.

            This set up allowed me to troll for pike with my '18 Celebrity which was propped for high speed.

            I borrowed a drift sock to use and the buckets worked much better for me.

            Jeff

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            • #7
              Re: trolling plate

              Originally posted by Jeff-in-PA View Post
              ...A pair of 12' ropes with a 5 gallon bucket on each rope. Each bucket has about a dozen 9/16" holes drilled into the bottom....
              You might find that this one modification to the bucket method may improve your ability to successfully net fish and also eliminate the risk of your prop finding the bucket ropes:

              Tie the buckets to a shorter length of rope from a side cleat or mooring guide on your bow. That will give you your drag without being in the way of landing big fish, no hooks in the ropes, and no chance of an unexpected fish-on "maneuver" getting those ropes wrapped up.

              My 2 cents
              Clean feet are happy feet; same for boats.
              1964 MFG Niagara Deluxe
              1969 MFG Edinboro

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: trolling plate

                I put the trolling plate on a few days ago and to be honest I had never heard of a drift sock before. I prefer the 2 buckets idea because I have 2 buckets kicking around that are always in the way. I think I'll do up the buckets just in case I need to slow down a little more.
                I heard that the happiest 2 days of owning a boat are the day you buy it and the day you sell it, glad to say that doesn't apply to me!
                12' Mahogany Flat Skiff
                2011 Bayliner 185
                My 1980 Silverline Nantucket 17VBR

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: trolling plate

                  I am thinking of buying a plate as well, My quesyion not to steal this thread but do the make them for 175 hrs motars like mine? I have looked on line but only seem to find for upto 140-150hrs.

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                  • #10
                    Re: trolling plate

                    A few pictures of my trolling plate. I haven't had it in the water since installation - trailer problems - but hopefully tomorrow evening I will get a few Walleye.



                    I heard that the happiest 2 days of owning a boat are the day you buy it and the day you sell it, glad to say that doesn't apply to me!
                    12' Mahogany Flat Skiff
                    2011 Bayliner 185
                    My 1980 Silverline Nantucket 17VBR

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: trolling plate

                      ^^^That's the same plate we use on my brothers boat. It does slow you down...

                      But the plate needed a little attention from the fab shop last time I was with him. It actuall gave out where the main part of the flap merges to the hinge area. Nothing a little extrat braceing and welding didn't take care of!

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                      • #12
                        Re: trolling plate

                        Originally posted by IceWater View Post
                        A few pictures of my trolling plate. I haven't had it in the water since installation - trailer problems - but hopefully tomorrow evening I will get a few Walleye.



                        Have a 120 horse Mercury o/b wanted to know if this would be a good plate to get....what brand and what size is it?

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                        • #13
                          Re: trolling plate

                          Originally posted by evinice66 View Post
                          might be happyer with 2 drift socks, one on each side.............................................. ........................
                          Drift socks are good for drifting but will eventually fall apart when used for trolling,...

                          However trolling bags also work great as drift socks,...

                          Google up "Amish Outfitters",...They are the "gold standard" on Lake Erie charter boats, I have a pair for my boat and they are worth every penny,.....

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                          • #14
                            Re: trolling plate

                            Originally posted by Get the net View Post
                            Have a 120 horse Mercury o/b wanted to know if this would be a good plate to get....what brand and what size is it?
                            We used the trolling plate lots last year and it worked great. I'd have to have a closer look at it to tell you the brand, but I think they are all very similar.
                            I heard that the happiest 2 days of owning a boat are the day you buy it and the day you sell it, glad to say that doesn't apply to me!
                            12' Mahogany Flat Skiff
                            2011 Bayliner 185
                            My 1980 Silverline Nantucket 17VBR

                            Comment


                            • #15
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                              Re: trolling plate

                              Dragging buckets and plates are probably o.k. on an I/O but if you think about it, you're running that motor under a heavier than normal load for long periods of time. These methods are really hard on two stroke outboards. The four strokes seem to deal with it a little better as long as you give them a good high rpm run after you're done or if they start acting up.

                              Don't read this like an armchair opinion, it's not. I've had to fix a lot of motors that failed early in life because of this. I call them poor man's kicker motors and if that's all you can afford then you make do with what you have. That's cool just know that you can be bringing on early engine failure.

                              My advice, run these while you're saving you pennies for a kicker motor.

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