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Best Downrigger Reviews:An ultimate Buying Guide 2017

A Downrigger is a device used while fishing with the trolling method. The downrigger helps to place a lure to a depth that is desired. It is made up of a 3-6 feet horizontal pole that supports a 10 to 15 pound cannonball by a steel cable. Down rigging is therefore good for deep water fishing and more specifically in controlling the depth of fishing. They help in controlling the depth of your lure presentation from just below the surface to as deep as 200 feet and keep the lure running consistently. There are four main components of a downrigger which include the spool, boom or pole, cable and the weight.

Step-By-Step Operation of a Manual Downrigger

​Step 1

First, set up your fishing reel to free-spool as the boat runs at trolling speed, then apply some pressure to the reel using your thumb and release the lure to a distance that you want. Set the drag clicker to stop the reel from free-spooling. Thereafter, place the fishing in in the rod holder.

Step 2

Hold the fishing past the rod tip using one hand and take a firm hold of the line release using the other hand. Lift the cannonball from the water and attach the line to the line release. Thereafter, place the cannonball back to the water.

Step 3

Loosen the clutch knob by turning it counter-clockwise as you firmly grip the reel handle of the downrigger. This is essential in releasing the tension on the disc plates of the clutch that help in holding the cannonball at the desired depth.

Step 4

The moment the weight of the cannonball starts to pull down the downrigger reel, then lower the cannonball by cranking the reel counter-clockwise. Observe the line counter mounted on the downrigger’s top, which is marked at increments of one foot.

Step 5

When your desired depth is reached on the line counter, you can now re-tighten the disc clutch. This is done by turning the clutch knob clockwise until the clutch is able to hold the weight of the cannonball.

Step 6

After setting the clutch on the downrigger, you can now set the drag and the drag clicker on the fishing reel. Start taking up the slack in the fishing line, until the fishing rod bows.

Step 7

When you want to retrieve the lure or a fish strikes, detach the fishing rod from the rod holder and lift it suddenly to release the fishing line from the line release. You can now comfortably retrieve the lure or land the fish.

Step 8

Lastly, grip the reel handle of the downrigger firmly and loosen the clutch knob and then crank the downrigger clockwise until you see the cannonball. Thereafter, ensure the clutch knob is tightened for secure holding of the cannonball.

Cannon Magnum 5 ST Electric Downrigger


  • Instant stop feature
  • Fast and powerful
  • Positive ion control
  • Easy spool access


  • An inefficient ball storage hook
  • A crappy manual


  • Power loss crank handle
  • Single terminator
  • Mounting hardware and base
  • Corrosion resistant construction
  • Comes with a line release and 250 feet of 150-lb stainless steel cable
  • Positive ion control
  • Integrated ball storage hook
  • 20 lb weight capacity
  • 24-inch heavy-duty stainless steel
  • Three-digit depth counter
  • IP 68 waterproof power cord
  • Retrieval rate of 250 feet per minute
  • Limited lifetime warranty
  • Cannon Uni-Troll 10 STX Manual Review

Cannon Uni-Troll 10 STX Manual Review


  • Fast to retrieve
  • Easy to use
  • Easy install
  • Comes with enough accessories
  • User friendly crank handle

Features & Specification

  • Dual axis rode holder that is fully adjustable
  • Integrated ball storage hook
  • Plastic spool
  • Low-profile swivel base
  • One-Hand Clutch Deploy for controlled, precise bait positioning
  • Comes with a heavy telescopic boom which extends from 24 inches to 53 inches
  • Comes with an easy-access universal mounting base
  • Comes with an enhanced boom end with a closed pulley system
  • Three-digit depth counter
  • 200 feet of 150-lb test stainless steel cable
  • 20 pounds weight capacity

Scotty Compact Electric Downrigger with24-Inch Boom


  • Fast, powerful and durable
  • Limited lifetime warranty
  • Compact size


  • 1 power Grip Plus line release
  • Comes with a tilt-mounting plate
  • Strong stainless steel boom
  • Fully adjustable rod holders
  • Full salt protection
  • Full hands-free operation
  • High lifting power
  • Low amp draw
  • Ultra-fast retrieval rate
  • 24 inches long, 1 inch diameter stainless steel boom
  • 250 feet of cable
  • 235 feet per minute retrieve
  • 8 pound weight


​Choosing the right downrigger is the first step towards a successful fishing day out. Having chosen the right downrigger, you ought to know how to operate it. The manual downriggers are the most commonly used in fishing. It is therefore necessary to take time to learn the step by step operation of your manual downrigger to use it effectively. The market is awash with several downriggers that will fit into your budget and needs. As such, it is important to take some time to look above 3 reviews  in order to purchase a downrigger that is worth for your money.

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