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A future project, next month or so, is to buy and install a pair of downriggers for my R2160. 

I am leaning towards the back corners so I could run them straight back or swivel them out to the sides. I am also leaning to manual simply due to cost. Use will be for salmon trolling in New York so I will be using fairly heavy weights, 10 to 15lbs.

Because of the weight I am concerned about using the rod holders as a mount and am leaning towards directly mounting them on the boat.

Any thoughts as to the best way to secure the base plates to the boat??

Pic of one back corner.

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I just spent some more time looking at it. There is very limited space to get washers or backing on thru bolts, especially starboard side. Any ideas?

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You could try either the Fasco or Garelick stainless steel togglers. I haven't tried them, but it may be a good solution. West Marine sells the Fasco and Home Depot has the Garelick. There may be others as well.

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Have you thought about running a planer cleated off stern cleat or a z-wing to get your line down?  I have done the planer thing before and it works well.  #12 will do the job in most cases unless you have a lure with lots of drag...then a #16.

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Thanks. I looked them up online and they seemed like a good idea. Garelick uses them for their pedestal seat bases so they gotta be strong. 

As for a planer, in chasing salmon I will  need to target the depth and could easily be down 60 to 100 ft. Many will run planers with divers along with downriggers to get a wider spread and cover more of the water column vertically.  I also use downriggers in the spring for shad fishing in the delaware.

Bob

 

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Ok. I have been doing some deeper digging. I don't think the fasteners mentioned will work. Looks like they need more clearance than exists to get them set. ( the toggle goes in vertical and hast to clear the hole to flip flat) 

How much of a chore is it to remove that top plate? Looks like about 20 screws and caulk. Then I could bolt the mount directly with washers and replace the plate.

In the pic you can see where I want to put the mount and the plate runs from the transom up to the start of the rise , about 8ft.

Please ignore the mess... it's winter in pa!!

 

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No problem on the mess!  I get the fact you guys are stuck inside somewhat during the winter.

Are you able to access the underside of the gunwale at all?  The previous owner of my boat had a Penn downrigger mounted in about the same location and he was able to get some heavy stainless fender washers with one side cut down over the 4 bolts, then used lock nuts on them.  If you could fabricate a 1/4" aluminum backer plate for under there, that would be better.  

Are you considering removing the cover boards and not replacing them once the downrigger base is in place?

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I was hoping the gunnel board removal would give me access. But now that I slept on it they are probably more cosmetic and there is still fiberglass underneath.

Port side I have some access and could probably work washers to the bolts, starboard side... it is tight, ugg. I am not sure a backer plate could work. What I can feel of the underside is uneven.

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They are nothing more than a cover to catch the abuse of fishing and stepping on the boat.  Underneath is fiberglass the same thickness as the glass behind the coaming pads.  There is a strip of wood glassed to the underside of the gunnel; that is why it feels uneven.  Just be sure to seal up any holes so water does not soak into that wood core.

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What suggestion would you have to seal those holes? Silicon? Or would it be better to paint the holes with fibreglass resin?

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I hate silicone! 

Two ways to do this.  Get some 2 part epoxy from Lowes or HD (the stuff that sets in 5 minutes) mix it up and paint the bare wood in the holes.  You may need 2 coats to get a good seal.

Second method is a little more involved.  Overdrill the holes.  Cover bottom of holes with tape, then fill holes with a thickened epoxy mixture (cabosil is perfect for this - mix to peanut butter consistency).  Fill holes and allow to set up overnight.  Next day drill holes to proper size in the center of the epoxy plug.  When sized properly, there should be about a 1/8 to 3/16" ring of epoxy surrounding the bolt hole.

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1st option and a little silicone cauk sounds easier to me. Thanks for the tips and all you do on this site!!

I found if I set them just behind the cleat slots there is a nice flat spot to thru bolt.  With 4 ft booms they will stick plenty far out the back or turned out the sides will give a nice spread.. Starboard side I think I will need to remove the side cushion to be able to get washers and nuts on the bolts. It's tight!

When I finally get it done I'll post a pick or two. I gotta keep moving, spring shad will be running in a few weeks up the mighty delaware. 

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Ok. I'm blaming Adam n Eve, nothing goes easy!!!

Starboard side I took the side cushion off to get better access for the washers and nuts after I thru bolt the bracket. Good news, I had room. Bad news, I had to remove the 2 rod holders to get to the cushion bolts. The one holder I could have just picked up. The gunnel wood is shot around the holders on that side. It looks like it is top plate, then wood then the bottom fibreglass of the gunnel.

If I remove the top plate can I just cut out the wood in the area of the rod holders and replace the top plate? What wood do I use? I won't need much if I can just replace a couple sections. How should I seal or protect that wood?

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It appears that the wood is not glassed in but laying on top of the fibreglass with the cover plate screwed and caulked onto the wood. Am I wrong? If so a patch repair should be easy. In this pick of the one rod holder hole you can see the 3 layers.

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The wood core was originally glassed in.  Over time moisture has worked into the wood and the bond to the glass has been compromised.  Don't think it is just your boat; I have the same thing going on with mine.

First thing I would do is remove as much of the wood around the hole as possible if there is any sign of rot.  Tape off any holes on the underside, then get some epoxy and mix it with cabosil to make a thick peanut butter consistency and pack it in the area the wood was removed.  It has to be thick enough so it will not flow...needs to be like a thick paste.  Pack it in there the best you can and let it set up 24 hours.  Come back, clean up any excess and re-drill the screw holes and re-install.

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Oky doky.  Sounds like a plan. I'll have to be creative to chisel the wood out, but there is definite rot on that side. Port side holders seem solid, I might remove them and make sure the wood is sealed up while I am at it.

What kind of an epoxy do you recommend to mix w the cabusol?

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I use West System.  Any decent one will work (Raka and TotalBoat are a few others).  Make sure what hardner you get if working in cold temps...West System has a tropical hardner for warm weather and you don't want to accidentally use it when temps are in the 50's or it will take a loooong time to cure!

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In this situation, that will work.  Biggest thing you are trying to accomplish is to bridge that gap between the top and bottom layer of fiberglass to get some rigidity for bolting to.  Water has already made it to the core, so don't worry too much about that now...just plan on having to replace that plywood under the gunwhale 15-20 years down the road :)

 

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Ok. Been away, got back to the boat today. I took the cover plate off, the wood is glassed into the cover plate, I can dig the bad wood out on my ping pong table and epoxy In the warm. My thought is to remove the bad wood around the rod holders and tie down holes. Then when it's ready to epoxy put the holders and tie down thingy in place, all upside down and pack the epoxy in that way. I'll grease the metal so it doesn't stick. Sound like a plan?

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Instead of grease, put a couple layers of car paste wax on the surface thick and don't buff off.  Use the type with no silicone, if available.  I would be concerned with the grease reacting with the epoxy and it might not cure where the two meet.

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