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Is the reel mast a good idea and do you mount it on the stern or bow? Also, what is your opinion on the Big Jon Otter Boats ?

Thanks...
 

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always on bow as high up as you can. or rail mount mid-boat. otter boards work well,but watch out they break in half sometime we did it in manistee in waves fishing for browns. board flipped over and sunk, hit bottom and snapped. wood home made boards work best. we sell them on walleye fishing lake erie .com
 

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first I have my big jon planner mast in the bow,second I don't like the otter boats.I have the big tri fold skis and love them,have used them for 15 years and in some seas I probaly should of and they have never flipped.my buddie has a pair of otter boats,I've used his many times and prefer my 3 ski boards ten times better .on mine the releases run right out to the board almost emeditly,on his it seems to take forever,also hard time turning with his otter boats way to much slack line,same thing in seas very hard to use.
 

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As stated, your mast should be as far forward and as high as possible. Your rod holders will still be on the gunnels/transom towards the rear of the boat. Most people rig up a "pull line" to bring the planer line to them at the back of the boat when rigging big boards.
 

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Big Jon sells a pedestal seat mount that's pretty inexpensive, I think they're only $28 plus shipping. I'm gonna pick one up in the spring because I don't want to drill more holes in the floor or front of my boat.

If you guys want, I can post information on extending a bigjon mast. It's not too tough if you have access to some basic machine tools. The trick is finding a piece of aluminum tubing with the same ID as the OD of your mast. You can get it in McMaster Carr pretty easily. It's not an ultra-cheap project, but for $50 you can extend it as far as you feel comfortable. The only thing to worry about is the bending forces when you start extending it past 7 or 8 feet. The other option is to buy a piece of SS pipe and move the hardware from your aluminum mast to the the SS. An 8ft piece of SS pipe runs around $30-35 depending on where you buy it.
 

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I purchased a mast from Jpollman last year that he had rigged up on a seat post that fits right my boat (Atwood posts and bases) That can be done with any post/base with a minimum of fuss and tools. I asked him to put a pic in his gallery of the setup from when he was selling it. Pics coming......
 

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I mounted my reels off my arch.

http://www.team-fishigan.com/FT/boat_rig/boat.htm

Higher is better. It helps the release travel down the planner line better.

I dont completely agree that farther up front is better. Mine are actually rear of midship. Dont need a rope to attach releases to them either.
 

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If you are a structure troller, rather than straining open water, the further forward the mast is, the easier it is to keep the boards working where you want to present the bait, such as a weed edge. Rigging lines is certainly easier with the mast or reels further back.
 

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mike, you are right. the way i said to mount board mast is to keep it up high.some larger boats have plenty of room on the sides.i have an 1930 lowe with a walk thru windshield.there is not a good place to mount the mast or reels midship.i have found that to not drag the lines thru the water helps a lot.you save tangles and board slack.it also runs the releases out quicker. question? do you like weed whip or regular braided line?i use both and they are almost the same except i get lines out faster on weed whip line.my other boat has boards mounted mid-ship and i have to struggle to reel them in because of the odd angle we had to mount the reel. just my 4 cents!
 

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Lakeside down in Shores has them. They are just BigJon reels.

If you get some, check the guide on them before you leave the store. Make sure it is welded closed.
 

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But the mast(or "pole") on the bow makes for solid entertainment at the dock afterparty following a night of Grand Haven bar trollin.... I'm thinking of anodizing mine gold with some flashing LED's underneeth...
 

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you might want to keep eye on ebay i got a mast with seat mount two reels and boards for 120$ i couldn't beat that any where
 
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