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Author Topic:   gimbal type downrigger mounts
whalerdoc posted 05-21-2002 01:30 PM ET (US)   Profile for whalerdoc   Send Email to whalerdoc  
I was wondering if the collective wisdom of the forum had any experience with the gimbal type of mount made by cannon or cabela's for mounting downriggers. These are the bases that slide into recessed rod holders, allowing the downriggers to be mounted atop a plate protruding from the holder. No drilling into gunnel for downrigger bases, and it looks to be clean and simple. However, I am just curious if anyone has used these and if they are in fact a good solution (for an 18 OR.) Only concern i have is if the gunnel (teak) and rod holder are substantial enough to handle the torque generated by a large downrigger with two rods over time without cracking - suspect it should be, but would love to hear from anyone who has used these. Also, was not sure if this should go in general or repairs/mods so hope there is enough general interest in this to justify it being over here.
Thanks in advance -
Jerry Townsend posted 05-21-2002 02:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for Jerry Townsend  Send Email to Jerry Townsend     
Joe - I have seen those rod-holder mounts and question the application. That is, a downrigger will exert a significant torque onto the mount and the rod holders on my 17' OR are mounted onto the gunwales using just 3 screws. I have not made the calculations - but I would suspect that the rod-holder mounting is highly stressed. I have never seen one on a boat.

That is the reason that I made bracket/clamps of 3/16" stainless that are contoured to the gunwale, rests on the top of the gunwale and clamps to the vertical side of the gunwale. All surfaces adjacent to glass are covered with 1/8" rubber to protect the gelcoat. The result, a good solid downrigger mount that loads the entire gunwale, nothing protruding into the cockpit of the boat, easily moved or removed and without drilling one hole in the boat. These work beautifully. ---- Jerry/Idaho

bigz posted 05-21-2002 03:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for bigz    
Used them with no apparent stress with heavy electric Cannon Mag 10 downriggers on a 20 OR.

I have them now with the same on our 27 ccc, and have a pair of manual Penn using them on our 27 WA which since it is for sale I'm am not going to bother putting in 12v local connectors to use the Cannons.

There are lots of boats on Delaware Bay so equipped with gimbals and swivel bases. Never heard of anyone complaining they caused any damage.

Dick posted 05-21-2002 10:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for Dick  Send Email to Dick     
The only thing I would stress is make sure your rod holders are the style with the pin through the bottom. The pin is what holds the downrigger in position.
JimCha posted 05-22-2002 01:04 AM ET (US)     Profile for JimCha  Send Email to JimCha     
I have a pair of scotty electric downriggers on my 18 Outrage 88. I mount 1 on a gimbal mount but make sure to only trail it directly aft, not to the side. Scotty advises that gimbal mounted is best not to deploy to side due to excessive torque on gunnel(?sp). I mount the other on a pedestal on gunnel but trail it aft also.

The previous owner had used the downrigger to the side on a gimble mount and it had cracked the teak at the rod holder. Since then I reinforced the teak by bracing it from below with oak planks screwed and glued with gorilla glue directly to the teak. much stronger now but still don't deploy downrigger to the side.

Scotty's are great downriggers.


reelescape1 posted 05-22-2002 12:15 PM ET (US)     Profile for reelescape1  Send Email to reelescape1     
I use them but Homemade!!!
TheSkipper posted 05-22-2002 01:29 PM ET (US)     Profile for TheSkipper    
I e-mailed Boston Whaler customer service a few weeks ago with a similar question concerning the rear deck/transom mounted rod holders on my 180 Dauntless. Their response was that using the gimbal mount for downriggers would not be a problem, and that it does not require any modification to the boat, i.e., reinforcement or additional backplates. (My e-mail to BW did not indicate whether I would be using the downriggers straight out the back of boat or out to the sides, and their response did not indicate that either would be a problem.)
whalerdoc posted 05-22-2002 03:59 PM ET (US)     Profile for whalerdoc  Send Email to whalerdoc     
This sounds like a super solution - do you have any pictures of your fabrication?
Thanks for all the replies - keep them coming. Sounds like whaler feels the gimbals are ok with fiberglass gunnels (eg the dauntless) but I am concerned that the teak may not have the same strenght given the open construction. Any other thoughts? thanks!

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