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questions may reflect past and/or current product changes.
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Q. 071013. I recently lost an OR12L board when the line
came out of the clip while fishing for muskie. I looped
around and despite that fact that it floats and is yellow,
I could not find it! What would a good muskie rod type be
for use with this planer board? Also, without a tattle system
what does a strike look like if you just have the board
out there? Does it drop back?
A. Sorry you lost the board, I have heard of stories
of muskie eating the Off Shore OR12 Side Planer, but that
is just stories-I think!
Any of your 7' muskie casting rods should be fine. It has
to have enough backbone to handle the board and be able
to handle the big lures used when fishing for them. When
fishing suckers for them, you could use a little softer
rod, but no reason to buy a rod specific to trolling.
The strike should be violent with artificial lures and
could just be a subtle pulling back when using live bait.
I have had a couple while walleye fishing on Green Bay that
seemed like a big walleye until they got close to the boat,
then all heck broke loose!
Q. 061713. What release do I use when trolling your
OR12 Side Planers and using super line?
A. I am not a fan of super lines when trolling with
boards; I prefer to use 10-15# mono. If you are using super
lines, then I recommend the OR18 Snapper and even then,
on rough days you should wrap the line around the Snapper.
When putting the line in the back OR16 Clip, be sure to
put the line behind the pin protruding through the middle
of the pad. When reeling the board in with a fish on it,
point the rod at the board until it is about 6' from the
rod tip. Then lift the rod and be sure not to let the board
back in the water because it will dive.
Q. 061413. My OR12 Side Planer keeps running back
on me, what do you suggest?
A. Check the board for the ballast weight or possibly
the foam is waterlogged (which should not happen). Swap
the foam out with one of your other boards and see if that
makes a difference as this will tell you for sure if it
is the foam. We've only heard of this happening a couple
Q. 061413. Can you run tadpoles off of OR12's with
the tattle flag set up?
A. You should be able to run the #1 and #2 with
the OR12TF Tattle Flag setup. As long as there is movement
in the flag, it will show you if you have a fish. I have
run big deep running cranks with the flag almost to the
board, but still it showed the strike.
Q. 060713. I'm having issues with the clips on my
OR12 planer boards with the tattle flag setup. On 5 of my
6 boards the OR16 clip pads are stuck together. This makes
getting the line between them near impossible. Weak adhesive?
I have also lost 3 nylon nuts. Please let me know if other
customers are having the same issues and what can be done
to resolve them. As far the overall performance of the boards,
I have been very pleased as they pull true and put me on
A. The usual cause of the pads sticking is not putting
something between them during long storage periods. I usually
put a business card or something like that in mine. Best
way to loosen them up is to torque them slightly sideways
to break the friction loose.
Each board came with a screw and spare nut on each bracket
to use to replace the ones you may lose. Make sure you check
tightness prior to setting the board out each time as the
instructions indicate. If you want to get a lock nut instead,
they are 6 x 32 and available in stainless at most marine
or hardware stores.
Q. 060313. Is it possible to use the OR34 Mini Planer
Board for lure trolling by a land based angler from a beach?
What is the largest lure I could troll with that?
A. As long as there is current, it will work. Small
lures will work best like #7 shad raps as well as live bait
with small weights works too.
Q. 052713. I have 9 (used to have 10) OR12 boards.
I have one right board that runs significantly behind the
remainder. I have the same releases/clips on each. I use
the OR18 on the bracket. Can't seem to find out why; any
A. Could you look at the floatation foam and see
if it is beat up. Also, if it is an older board, check the
lead ballast since
occasionally there were some differences in that weight
since we had no control about the mix of the lead. We now
use lead free material for the ballast and they are all
dead on. Switch lead out with one of the other boards and
see if that cures the problem.
Q. 030413. I have used your boards for years for
walleye with good success. Last year I tried them with salmon,
hooked up with a nice one, and the board became disengaged
from the line and was ultimately lost. I purchased a new
one and reading the instructions, there appears to be alternate
clips to be attached to the back of the board for use with
bigger fish. I plan on ordering the clips, but before I
do, I have a question. On the instruction sheet, it shows
the front clip attached to the bracket with a split ring
(for faster trolling), and the back pigtail clip appears
to be attached to near the bottom tail of the board.
Do any of your customers use the smallest size dipsy divers
below your boards to achieve additional depth, or does the
pull of the dipsy disrupt the performance of the boards?
A. To answer your first question, using the pigtail
(or a snap swivel) will let the board slide down to a stop
you put ahead of the lure. You do not want the board to
go all the way to the fish or you will lose the fish. That
swivel or pigtail goes on the board the same place the back
clip is now. You simply remove the clip and put the swivel
or pigtail on the split ring. We have had anglers use the
small size dipsy, but we prefer to use the tadpole just
because it is easier when you have a big spread out.
Q. 022413. Can you use a #7 shad rap with an OR34
Mini Planer Board?
A. The #7 Shad Rap will pull behind the mini. A
lot of the guys have pulled more, but all you can do is
try your bait and see how it performs. Tip: Put an OR16
(red) on the tail in place of the snap swivel and when you
get a fish on, you give the rod a snap towards the motor
to trip the OR10 (yellow) release on the bracket and the
board will turn around and you can land the fish with less
Q. 022013. I have a set of OR12's with the tattle
flag kit that I use for walleye. I am thinking about going
after some kokanee this summer using 6lb mono. Should I
get a set of OR34's or just maybe take the tattle flag kit
off of my OR12's, so I have the original lighter releases?
A. While the OR12 with the tattle flag will work,
I think you would have a lot more fun with the OR34 on those
small salmon. I have caught them this way and they are a
blast! I would rig the OR34 with the OR10 yellow clip on
the bracket in the light setting and then replace the back
snap swivel with one of the red OR16's from your tattle
flag boards. Now when you hook up on a fish, snap the rod
towards the motor to release the yellow clip and the board
will just be on the line like a bobber and you will get
the full fight out of the fish.
Q. 021413. When running 3 boards on one side of
the boat, to avoid tangles, should the inside board run
the deepest back? And how should the rod holders be set
up? Highest to lowest or the other way?
A. No, you can drop the inside board back and bring
the outer board with the fish in and then let the inside
board become the outside board.
Q. 121012. I guide for redfish and speckled trout
in Louisiana. Would trolling with Off Shore planer boards
work on open lakes for speckled trout? I do not know anything
about using planers boards. I want to troll soft plastics,
bandit crank baits, rattle traps, etc. What would help me
get the 1/4 oz. jig heads down deeper? Nobody uses this
method in South Louisiana. (I think the mini planers will
work). The lakes are only 5' deep and the trout suspend
as well as hang out on the bottom.
A. The OR34 Mini Planer would be perfect for this.
Run the 1/4 oz. jigs about 30-40 feet behind the board and
that will put you about 5' down.
Q. 120512. I am looking to order in line planer
boards and would like some advice on your products. I will
be trolling artificial lures for large striped bass on the
Chesapeake Bay. Line weight will be 20 lb. test; lure weight
would be 4 ounces max. Which of your products would you
recommend for this application?
A. I have fished in your area and use the OR12 Side
Planer. Four ounces in no problem with it and speeds up
to 4 mph will work. I would put a snap swivel on the tail
of the board instead of the release that comes with it to
prevent losing the board.
Q. 110612. I was wondering if you could tell me
which of your planer board releases would be best on Lake
Erie walleye using braid?
A. I am assuming you are meaning the OR12 Side Planer.
If so, the OR18 Snapper is the best. If you use the OR19
which is orange or OR16 (red) you need to wrap the line
around the pads.
Q. 100912. On your OR34, you say light tackle, what
range are you referring to?
A. We have used them on 4# on up. I've even trolled
a streamer fly and split shot on that line for gil's and
crappie. We have also used them on 5 colors of lead while
speed trolling for steelhead on Lake Erie. They work a wide
spectrum of presentations.
Q. 082712. I fish walleye in Lake Erie off the city
of Erie, Pa in 60+ feet of water; my boat isn't right for
big boards so. I would like to use the OR12 in line boards
with 5 colors of lead core, 1 oz. weight, an 800 series
reef runner and troll at 1.8-2.0 mph. I want to get down
48-52 feet. Will OR12 Side Planers work with this scenario
and if I rig my board with an OR12TF Tattle Flag, will this
set up work with this amount of pull?
A. To answer your first question, using 5 colors
and 1 oz. with an 800 series reef runner will work. We are
pulling 300' of copper wire for salmon and even adding a
#2 Tadpole behind it and that is getting us down to 70+
Answer to your second question, about the using the OR12TF
Tattle Flag upgrade, no. There are a lot of anglers pulling
a full core and 3 oz. weights with various stick baits to
fish the deep water of Lake Erie with Off Shore OR12 Side
Q. 052112. I have an OR12 that I started using again
after a couple of years off and it seems to be riding high
in the water on the front. There is no weight on the front
slot ahead of the long weight on the bottom of the board,
does the front slot need a weight also or am I just running
too heavy of crank bait?
A. It is riding correctly. The front is supposed
to be high so that it won't dive in big water. Do not add
any weight to the board or you will find out what kind of
bottom is in the area you are fishing! Lol!
Q. 050112. How much realistically can I drag behind
an OR34 without sinking it? I would like to be able to run
original floaters up to #7 shad raps.
Also, I would like to add a small chemical light with a
small screw and P-clip. Would adding this to the OR34 affect
A. You can run the #7's easily, even if you add
weight and the board goes under while setting it, it will
come back up and plane. I have never added a light to one,
but it shouldn't have much of an effect.
Q. 031412. I'm new to planer boards and thought
I'd give them a try. Cabela's has a combo (2 planer boards
with OR19 releases and OR12TF Tattle Flag Upgrade Kits)
that I would like to purchase. We troll for salmon and lake
trout and use 65 lb. super line with mono or fluorocarbon
Are the OR19 releases suitable for super line or do I need
Can I use the OR18's with the Tattle Flag Kits? Do I really
need the tattle flag kits?
If I wanted to use your OR20 Pro Weight system with 65 lb.
super line, do I need OR18 releases for that as well?
A. Yes, you should have the OR18's for super line.
They work great. My boards are set up this way. Do not use
tattle flags for salmon fishing. The OR16's that come with
the OR20 Pro Weight System will work fine for 65 lb. super
line; make sure you put the line behind the pin protruding
through the center of the pad.
Q. 022112. Do you have any light tackle trolling
equipment that could be used while canoe fishing? I have
a camp on a killer little lake that has a nice amount of
walleye and big landlocked trout.
A. I think our OR34 Mini Planer would really fit
the bill for your application. It is small, light and inexpensive.
Q. 022112. Was not aware OR34 board does not float.
I was reading about putting foam on the board but I don't
know how much and where foam should be placed so it does
not affect running of board. Maybe split a pole float and
glue on top of board? What you think?
A. The OR34 does float, just barely, but it is not
an issue. We have pulled 1/4 oz. hot n tots and 1 ounce
in lines with it. We have experimented with pieces of foam
on both sides and really have not seen any difference in
the way it runs. The biggest thing with the OR34 is to slowly
let it out to make sure it is going to the side. Do not
free spool it behind the boat.
Q. 021212. Can you use 15 lb. lead core trolling
trout or will it just flat line?
A. We have used the OR34 Mini Planer with 5 colors
of lead core for steelhead on Lake Erie, but with a full
core it is too much weight to get out to the side very much.
Q. 020412. I fish Lake Erie for walleye & steelhead
using full size dual planer boards with 30# braid line and
the OR3 (white) full size planer board releases. The braid
slips through the releases. Is this the wrong release or
are the pads in need of being replaced?
A. First I would try putting a loop in the line,
twisting it between your fingers and pinching the coil in
the release. If this doesn't work for you, switch to the
full size OR17 Medium Tension Planer Board Release (black)
or the orange OR19 mini clip. Again, spinning a loop and
pinching the coil is always a good way of using our releases
with any of the super lines.
Q. 122711. I recently got very interested in fishing
when I went out with my father's boss trolling for walleye
using your OR12 Side Planers and I was hooked immediately.
I run 6 poles (3 off both sides) and I have been visiting
your website and will be upgrading my boards with the OR12TF
Tattle Flag Kit. I have read a lot about these and from
what I understand it sounds like people have the lines release
from the clips when they have a fish? I was just wondering
if that is the way they are supposed to work. I have personally
had no problems other than having 2 tangle ups last season
but I put it on operator error (new boat driver). When a
fish hits my furthest board or my middle board, I have to
determine whether I can get it to the side of the boat or
if it's pulling hard enough, I'll play it out and go to
the back of the boat with it. They have worked tremendously
for me! I am nothing but a novice and had no problem feeding
the family plenty of walleye. So long story short - should
I be finding a tension where the strike would release my
clip? I run 20# mono on 8 ½ foot rods with crawler
harness. (A little overkill, but I don't lose fish!)
A. I don't release my boards when walleye fishing
(it sounds like you are doing it the way I do) and I have
the occasional tangle even after years of using them! Lol!
Salmon anglers sometimes release the boards by putting a
snap swivel on the tail and letting it slide down to a stop
above the lure. Lead core guys will bring the boards in
and remove it.
You have a good grasp of what fishing with Off Shore Side
Planers is all about.
Q. 091311. I have two questions about the OR12 boards.
1. How many color changes of lead line will they pull without
2. Will the OR12TF Tattle Flag work with lead core line
pulling salmon spoons, or is there too much weight pulling
the flag back?
A. We pull a full core and even more with the OR12.
Even if you stop the boat and the board sinks from the weight
it will come back up once you start moving again. The tattle
flags are not needed when pulling lead core. There is too
much weight to hold the flag up.
Q. 062311. When using 2 boards on each side of the
boat, which is the best way to position your rod holders
to prevent line tangles? Which holder should go to the inside
A. Usually the farthest board out should have the
rod towards the back of the boat. Closest rod is forward.
This will allow you to turn without running over the board
on the inside. Most anglers have it just the opposite! Why?
I don't know. Try the inside forward and the outside board
towards the stern and see how you like it.
Q. 061611. Last week I used the OR12 Side Planer
from shore in moderate fast current on the Cottonwood River
in MN. I was able to run line out almost to the opposite
shore. It's a bit cumbersome to get the rig into the current
but once there, we could hold any position in the river
we wanted. Great fun! We caught one walleye, a small northern
and three cats. Have you ever heard of such?
A. That is a great use for the Off Shore Side planer.
Lots of guys do that in the south for cats and I have done
it on the White River in Arkansas for stocked trout.
Q. 032311. I'm looking for a board for lake trout
that range from 5 to 15 lbs. to use in Northern Ontario.
I am planning on using two rods per side with two downrigger
rods rigged with 8 to 10 lb. mono line.
I like the OR34's but I also like the tattle flag system
which I understand is not compatible with this product.
The OR12's convert to the tattle flag system and would
pull harder, but I'm afraid they will become too much drag
(for the # mono) once a fish is on; even after it slides
down to a weight for example.
What do you recommend for this application?
A. It sounds like you're going to be fishing quite
close to the surface at that time of the year with shallow
baits. If that is the case, the OR34 would work well for
you. If you're putting on weights and pulling larger lures,
the OR12 would be best. The OR12TF Tattle Flag Upgrade does
make it easier to see and read the OR12.
How far back from the board to the lure are you planning
on running? I like to bring the board in and remove it then
finish fighting the fish to the net. It is not as difficult
as it seems and you will get the hang of it after a few
Q. 031811. I troll for trout in our lakes using
6ft light pole with 6-8 lb. line. What planer board and
tadpole should I buy?
A. The OR36 1 (#1) Tadpole would probably be best
for depth up to 25'; however, the 6-8 lb. line you're using
could handle either the #1 or #2 (OR36 2). The OR34 Mini
Planer would work best with the #1.
Q. 031011. I have never used planer boards before
and I am not sure what I need. We fish for bass and walleye
mostly but they do have stripers were we fish (Bull Shoals
& Lake Arkansas). I am interested in the planer boards
as well as the tadpoles. How do I determine whether I need
right or left and what type of releases do you recommend
for 10-20 lb. mono and fluorocarbon. How do the tadpoles
work? What causes the release once a strike has occurred?
Would a snag or bouncing on bottom cause a release?
A. Both the OR12 Side Planer and the OR34 Mini Planer
will work for striper. We have several videos and articles
on our website for even more info, but I will give you quick
The OR34 works with live bait for stripers very well, just
put the shad on with little or no weight and let it out
slowly to the side. They are easily reversible from right
The OR12 has been designed for salmon, walleye and striper
when using heavier weights or larger crank baits. Again,
you let the lure out to get to the desired depth and pinch
it on the line. They are designated as Left and Right so
you will need one for each side (or 2 for each side). You
will not have to change releases on either product for most
The Tadpoles trip when a fish pulls on the lure which is
being run on a leader 1' to 4' behind the Tadpole. It will
not trip if you bounce the Tadpole on the bottom, but if
you snag the lure, it will. The line slides down from the
bend in the Tadpole and releases the drag from the wide
flat lip that makes it dive. If the fish gets loose, the
Tadpole will reset and begin diving again. You should bring
it in and check it though for clean lures or bitten off
This is pretty simple, but once you start fishing them
you will find they are easy and catch fish.
Q. 030711. I just purchased 6 (3 rights and 3 lefts)
of your OR12 Side Planers and was wondering on what type
of rigging I should use for Lake Erie? I will most likely
be trolling from 18 to 30 feet depths of water. Are they
compatible with dipsy divers? If not, what do you recommend
I use to obtain these depths? We usually use dipsy divers
with small spoons. I would assume that nothing extra is
needed using reef runner plugs, but my main question is
concerning deeper depths and dipsy diver use.
A. Small divers can be run off the boards, but not
much larger. We use the OR20 Pro Weight System with our
lead free (OR20 Series) guppy weights, rigged as an in line
weight to get down deep and our #2 (OR36 2) Tadpole with
a spoon can get you about 30'. As far as changing the boards,
my recommendation for Erie's big water is to change the
front release to the OR18 Snapper. This is a clip designed
for super lines and mono and holds in just about any water
Q. 030311. Do your systems work for trout (3-6 lbs.)?
A. Our products will work in any trolling situation.
There are no changes to the application whether you're
on an inland lake, Great Lake or a high mountain lake. The
key is to put the bait at the proper depth and speed. Our
website explains many uses from the (OR20 Series) guppy
snap weight, (OR36 Series) Tadpole or (OR12 Series) side
planer. I don't know how you're planning on fishing, but
without more knowledge of what you're trying to do, I am
sure it will be covered on our website.
Q. 022411. I am considering the purchase of your
OR12 Side Planer. Most of my trolling gear is rigged with
15 or 20 lb. power pro. Do I need to purchase the OR18 Adjustable
Tension Snapper Releases, or will the standard releases
supplied with the package work as well? I normally fish
for brown, rainbows, and occasionally fresh water hybrid
A. If you are not fishing on a huge lake like Ontario,
you can probably get by with the orange OR19 that comes
with the OR12 Side Planer. The OR16 (red) and OR19 have
the same spring tension with the only difference is the
pin in the center of the OR16. You can always put a wrap
around the OR19 release on the bracket when using them with
power pro as well; however, the OR18 Snapper is specifically
designed for super line use.
Q. 021011. I am using the OR12 for the first time
this spring on Lake Erie, I have some #0 dipsy divers which
are 3.25 inches in diameter; are these to large to use with
your OR12 planer board?
A. You are on the upper limit of what the OR12 will
handle. Usually we stay with in line weights when using
the side planer. Three ounce (OR20 3) Guppy weights or #
2 (OR36 2) Tadpoles will get you down to 30' with spinners.
You're not going to gain much with the dipsy. Worst case
is to try them and go from there.
Q. I am totally unfamiliar with planer boards but
think they might suit my needs well. I have not found much
information on planer boards for catfish. Your opinion and
advice would be greatly appreciated.
My target species is the channel catfish between 5 -12
pounds. We currently do a lot of drifting in the wind with
a drift sock off the side of the boat at speeds between
.5 and 1.2 mph. On our 18 foot boat, we can drift 5 rods
somewhat effectively. The problem is the lines tend to converge
toward the center of the boat as we drift. Would planer
boards work for this situation?
Our rig is 7 foot medium action rods running 20 - 30 pound
mono with 1 oz pencil weights to drift the bottom. We run
18-24 inch leaders down to a 6/0 Gamakatsu Octopus Circle
hook with a 2 or 3 inch piece of cut shad. Our reservoirs
are flood control with no current, only wind.
1. Would planers allow us to cover a larger area of water?
2. Which planers and clips would we use?
3. Would they work at the slower speeds mentioned above?
4. How would we use them?
A. All of your questions are YES. Anything you read
on using Off Shore OR12 Side Planers for walleye will work
for cats; there are some videos on the products and we are
always working on more. You would fish them no different
than you are now, with the amount of line out from the board
to the bait being the same as from the boat to the bait
now. You will have to guess how much line is in the air
before it enters the water and subtract that from the board
to bait distance.
Remember, with the boards out to the side, inside boards
will let the bait drop down and the outside ones will lift
up when turning. Everything else is easier to do than to
talk about it. I would use the OR12's the way they come
with the OR19 (orange) releases and the flag that comes
with it. I don't think you will need tattle flags for cats,
they usually bite pretty well.
Q. I'm looking to get OR31 planer boards and don't
see them on any website. Can you supply them?
A. We have discontinued the OR31 because of a color
conflict with our competitor. They are the same as the OR12,
just without the flag. You need to drill a 1/16" hole
1" up from the end of the board and put the screw eye
from the front. This is where you put the split ring and
the orange OR19 clip that now comes with the OR12.
Q. I just bought one of your OR12 models and wanted
to know about rigging bottom bouncers to them. Would you
let your line out till the bouncer touches bottom and then
clip your planer board to it and let it off to the side
of the boat or what technique would you suggest?
A. Your method is good. Depending on the bottom
structure, you may want to add some line, just like fishing
it over the side without a board. Remember, when you turn
the inside bouncer is going to go straight down so you may
want to keep them up a little. Time on the water is the
best teacher. Also, let the board out slowly so you don't
lay the bouncer and the leader on the bottom.
Q. I just attended a fishing seminar by the captains
of Best Chance Too. They talked of using your OR31 SST boards
rigged with an OR19 orange release in a "fixed"
release fashion so the board would not slide down the line
on the reel in. I do not see the board style available on
your site. How would you suggest I best match this setup?
A. I am glad they shared some of their fishing knowledge
with you. The OR31 SST board is the same as the OR12 with
the exception of the screw eye on the back of the board.
This is about 1" from the bottom of the SST on the
very end of the board. Keep the flag folded down and drill
a 1/16" hole for the screw eye and you have the same
board. We discontinued this product because of the conflict
in color with one of our competitors.
Q. I'm interested in the OR34 Mini Planer Board.
I have many of the standard boards for walleye. What is
the size of the mini? I'm interested in using them for crappie.
What modifications do people make for this type of fishing?
I see that there is a snap swivel in the rear instead of
a clip with a pad. Is this something that I would have to
change? Or fish with the board sliding to the fish?
A. We designed the OR34 for crappie and the walleye
anglers are using it. You should have to do nothing with
the OR34 Mini, use it right out of the package for 95% of
your fishing. The dimensions are 3" X 6" and it
is reversible (each board serves as a left or a right, you
Keep me posted on how you do with it and what techniques
you're using please. We are looking for input.
Q. Do you make and sell counter weights for your
planer boards. I'm guessing that is what the three holes
in front are for? I'm using my OR12 planer boards with some
bigger crankbaits and the board wants to ride with the front
out of the water and not cut away from the boat. The counter
weights would help prevent the front end from riding out
of the water.
A. The design of the OR12 Side Planer is to ride
high like it does to prevent it from diving. The holes in
the front are for the tattle flag option for light biting
fish so you can adjust its spring tension. We run Reef Runners
along with other deep baits and while they don't go out
as far as they would with just a stickbait, they still allow
you to cover a wide path when trolling. If you hang anything
from the front, I guarantee you will not be happy! The bow
high is the nature of the beast and it is the best overall
way to run the board with the least amount of problems.
Q. I've just purchased 2 of your OR12 Side Planers
for muskie fishing. I'm looking at replacing the OR19 releases
with your OR18 Snapper Releases as I'm trolling 80lb test
Power Pro at about 3 - 5 mph with 10" inch, deep diving
Jake crankbaits. I've already replaced the rear release
with a pigtail. My question is, when I adjust the tension
on the OR18 so that it is tight enough to hold the Power
Pro, will it release the line when there's a strike?
A. I think the choice of going to the OR18 is the
right one for your application. You should not have any
problem holding that line with it and tripping should work
also. You may have to snap the rod towards the boat motor
to trip without a fish. It should not need any adjustments
but do it slowly if you do.
Q. I was thinking about getting the OR34 Mini Planer
Boards for fishing steelhead in rivers. My one question
is, can I let out the desired length of line from my rod,
engage the reel and let the board pull itself into my spread
like the OR12 Side Planer boards will?
A. Yes, the OR34 works very similar to the OR12.
It does not have a ballast weight so it won't pull out as
hard as the OR12 but it still works on the same principal.
I am assuming you're not using a big crank behind the board?
Something like a 1/4 hotshot etc. would work well.
Q. I have 8 off your Off Shore OR12 Side Planer boards,
snap weights, and numerous releases. I was wondering if
you made some sort of an organizer for the boards in the
boat. I was thinking of making one, but thought I would
ask before I did.
A. We don't make an organizer; however, there are
several on the market. Most are heavy material with sewn
pockets. I have also used the Lindy marker holders on my
boat for doing this. They are in a group of 3 and work quite
Q. My question is; I would like to set my OR12 boards
up so I can use the OR12TF Tattle Flag with the OR18 Snapper
Release. I've watched your video on You Tube and you were
using a release on the rear of the board that had a pin
in the back which allowed the release to slide down the
line, Can you tell me if you sell a kit with this set up
or is there a better way for me to do this? I want to use
the flag for two reasons; to detect grass and we also get
light biting fish such as lake trout and catfish while striper
A. The OR12TF Tattle Flag Upgrade Kit comes with
the clips that have the pin in the center of the pad. The
OR18 has to be purchased separately. Most striper guys do
not use the tattle flag since stripers hit so hard; although,
there isn't any reason not to if you think it would help
you catch more fish. I think your plan would be great for
the fish your after. You really should not need the OR18
and I would leave the original OR19 (orange) release on
the front. That way, the board can break loose from the
bracket and you can bring it in easier.
Q. I just bought an OR34 Mini Planer (first time
for using planers) board to use on inland lakes and reservoirs
in the Midwest. I plan on using it under certain conditions
for walleye, bass, crappie, etc. I am using Power Pro 20
lb (6 lb diameter) and 30 lb (8 lb diameter). Having read
many of the FAQ's in your website, I'm still confused. My
question is, did I buy the correct board and do I need a
different board release for the Power Pro line other than
the one included with the OR34?
A. Thanks for purchasing our OR34. You should have
no problems fishing with Power Pro and this planer. Keep
in mind it is not designed to pull a lot of weight and by
being so light it should pull ok with any line. Worst case
is you go to the OR14 or the heaviest mini release we make;
the OR19 which is orange.
Q. I have been learning to use your OR12 in line
planers for 5 years now. It has been a terrific new experience
for me and it has given me another seasonal dimension to
my fishing. I use them mostly for walleye, but I also use
them for trout and landlock salmon at the beginning of the
year. I have recently discovered the torpedo diver, and
in their text about this product they mention several times
the combined use with the Off Shore OR12 Side Planer boards.
However, they do not mention how much weight the boards
are able to carry. Can you folks shed any light on this
subject? Thanks for helping me become a better angler!
A. Thanks for the inquiry about using torpedo divers
and OR12's. The smallest weight will work, but not at real
slow speeds. It may sink when making turns, but it will
return to the surface after a bit when you straighten the
I normally just run the torpedo just over the side and the
planers out with another presentation.
Q. Last year I started trolling Lake Erie Central
Basin with dipsy divers & spoons and could run 4 rods
for 4 people. Could you recommend a planer board to run
to the side with no mast that also works with dipsy divers?
A. I think the answer to your wanting to run more
rods would be to use the Off Shore OR12 Side Planer with
Jet Divers. This should allow you to get down the 25-40
feet you need to in the Central Basin of Lake Erie.
Q. In your opinion what is the best board for trolling
for muskie with at least 4 boards out?
A. I would recommend our OR12 Side Planers for one,
but if you're looking at running a mast and big boards,
Riviera Trolling Systems makes a triple board that is second
Q. I am interested in running your OR12 boards for
walleye. I have a couple Shimano steelhead rods that I am
using for trolling right now with medium fast action rated
for 8-17 lb line and ¼ to 1 oz of weight. Can I legitimately
use these rods with your boards and crankbaits? If not,
what would you suggest?
A. Those rods would be good for boards. Almost any
downrigger type rod is my recommendation, I prefer 7 1/2
feet because I am short and it makes it easier for me to
Q. I am from Yellowknife Northwest Territories and
fish for lake trout every year. We go to the east arm on
the Great Slave Lake and enjoy probably the best trophy
lake trout fishing in North America. Not to brag but we
probably put 60-80 fish in the boat a day ranging from 8-40
lbs but averaging on the 12-20lb range. We use ciscoes for
bait fish in crippled herring rigs and a variety of spoons
and fish between 10-30 ft of water using 2, 3, 4 oz slip
weights in the early season. I bought a new boat this year
and want to run 4 rods so I thought I would use your OR12
planer boards on the 2 outside rods. I do not know anybody
else up here that uses the boards so I have no idea which
board to buy, which clips I should use, as well as if I
need the OR20 Pro Weight System, etc. I use 7 ft medium
action ugly sticks with 15 lb mono line. Hoping you can
recommend what to buy and how to best rig these using our
A. I would love to catch fish like that! My best
laker is about 22 lbs, so something like a 40 would be awesome.
Yes, I would recommend the OR12 Side Planer board for your
application. Fish the bait just like you do on the other
rods and let the board slip down to the weight after the
strike. You should not have to do any modifications to the
OR12 for what you're fishing. Your rods are good, your line
is correct and you should wear yourself out with 4 rods
in the water!
Q. I just purchased an OR12L and OR12R to fish Lake
Erie for walleye. How would I set up using jet divers size
20 & size 30 and reef runners? How much monofilament
line and leader would I use? Will I need the jet divers
to get to 20 or 30 feet, or will I just need the reef runner
and maybe some weight?
A. You can set the jets just like they show on the
package. They give you the amount of line for a given depth
and if you're using reef runners, you can add a little more
depth since the bait will take it a little further. Normally,
I run small spoons of the jets, especially mini and micro
For leader length, it should be as long as you can get
away with and still be able to land the fish when the jet
is at the rod tip. I hope this helps.
Q. I am using the OR34 board for drift fishing. The
problem I am having is that when I stop, the board sinks.
How do I correct this?
A. The OR34 is not made to float on its own. If
you want you can glue a piece of foam onto the board to
specialize its use for your purpose.
Q. When using flashers and rebels on the OR12's,
I keep having the problem with the line falling off. What
am I doing wrong?
A. Slide the spring on the OR19 release into the
heavy setting (toward the pads). You should not have any
problems pulling the flashers and rebels that way.
Q. I use the OR16 red clips on the back of my boards
with the OR12TF Tattle Flags and the OR14 black releases
on the front so I can pop the line and let the board swing
back when a fish is on. The problem I have had is that the
little plastic tit that catches the line inside the pad
of the OR16 red clip always gets a groove worn in it and
eventually breaks off causing a possibility of losing a
$50 board. (Not to mention that it makes it more difficult
to get it off the line when a fish is on because the line
gets stuck in the worn groove). What I have done to prevent
this is to drill a small hole completely through the center
of the clip where the tit is and cut down a finish nail
so it sticks through one side of the clip and just into
the other side, file the end smooth and glue into place,
now I have a steel pin instead of the plastic tit. This
much more durable. Can you upgrade your clips with a stainless
A. The OR16 is not designed to have line slide through
it. It is designed to keep the Pro Snap Weight from falling
off. Your application is what is causing the problem and
your cure is perfect. It would be too expensive to put a
metal pin in each release for the few people that fish it
that way. I am assuming your also using fire line that is
really accelerating the wear. If you don't want the line
to slide through the clip, you need to wrap the line once
around the clip behind the pin.
Q. I recently purchased a set of OR12 planer boards
& upgraded them with the OR12TF Tattle Flags. I had
them out yesterday for the first time in calm water. The
board seems to run front end high, back end low which caused
it to porpoise when traveling through the water. We brought
the board in to see if there was an adjustment & could
not find one other than the possibility of maybe moving
some of the weight into the small empty slot in the front
of the board. I would sure like to see the run smoother
& lower in the water. What do you suggest?
A. As you are obviously new to Off Shore Side planers,
you are experiencing the "New Board" jitters (LOL).
The theory of side planers is to run out to the side and
impart some action to the bait being towed behind it. To
have the board run flat like a boat would cause you problems
and I do not even want you to think about. Do not put any
weight in that front cavity or you will be cleaning mud
off the nose of the board. The value of a nose high board
will really come into play when you get in rough water and
those anglers running the flat running competition are having
problems with diving boards and catching fish. Please spend
more time with the board (going fishing is always fun) and
you will learn to read the board and catch a lot of fish.
Q. I recently purchased two of your planer boards
with the intent to run a 5 and 7 color set up for salmon.
I want the board to release from the line and slide down
to the leader. Now I've been using yellow birds for many
years with great success with this tactic by placing a large
swivel in between the line and my 9 foot lead line.
My question is do you think this would be a wise choice
in this application or should I be buying speed beads?
All opinions or thoughts toward lead core will be greatly
helpful being as this will be my first season ever using
A. I think the large swivel would work fine for
your application. A lot of anglers use a 50 foot lead for
lead core, but I tend to agree with your line of thinking.
The length of your leader is enough to let you still net
the fish and that should be all you need. We have a couple
of articles in our previous issues of the "Off Shore
Release" on our website that may give you a little
more information about using lead core.
Q. I'm trying to get my trolling program organized
and have a question. When using crankbaits with different
amounts of line out from the boards, how do I want to arrange
my set-up? Shallowest on the extreme outside and deepest
toward the inside?
A. I usually run the longest leads to the inside,
but that can cause a problem when you get a fish on the
outside. When I get a fish on the short lead, I drop the
inside board back until I think I can clear the fish and
then it becomes the outside board for the next time. I really
don't think it is a big problem how you set them up, just
remember the lead length for resetting when you get a fish.
Q. I have a pair of your OR12 boards and I put OR18
Snapper Releases on them for fire line. My question is if
I want to add another release to the back of the board so
it's easy to secure by just snapping instead of a swivel
(slide down method) do I need another OR18 release can I
get away with an OR19 for the back release?
A. The OR19 will work fine. I have never liked the way
the boards ran with the OR18 Snapper on the back.
Q. Can you give me an "about" weight to
use for keel weights when using in line OR12 Off Shore boards
that have the OR12TF Tattle Flag upgrade installed on them
with crawler harness traveling at approximately 1 mph for
specific depths? Then how much line do I let out to obtain
that depth before attaching the board? I would run the keel
weight directly in front of my 3-4 foot crawler harness.
1 oz keel weight for every 10 foot of depth at 1 mph?
A. It is about 50%; i.e. 20 feet of line is 10 feet
Q. Last week I purchased 6 OR34 Mini Planer Boards
for rigging my new boat. I have used OR12's with excellent
success on friend's boats; but tried the minis after reading
your tests. I tried one yesterday rigged with all the included
equipment (yes, they were assembled correctly) and again
today with just running the trailing line through the back
hole (in hopes it might flare out the travel path). Using
Rapala Countdowns, Berkley Frenzies with no added weights,
differing wind angles, and boat speeds of 1-4 mph; I was
never able to get the OR34 out more than 30 feet to the
side even with 8.5' trolling rods and 150 feet of line out.
A. I am wondering why they won't run for you? We
have done a lot of fishing with them and had no problem
getting them out a reasonable distance. Not the distance
out like the OR12, but plenty far enough for most conditions.
Did you have your rods high like with the OR12? You might
try them a little lower so as not to unload the board. The
only "problem" is in setting the board; you have
to let it out slowly, but it sounds like you have overcome
that quirk of the OR34. Please keep me informed.
Q. I recently purchased two OR12L & OR12R planer
boards with the OR17BWW release. We were trolling in fairly
heavy waves for walleye on Lake Michigan and I could not
keep the line from slipping out of the releases. We were
only trolling with spinner rigs at a very slow speed but
still had a lot of trouble. Can you help me out? When I
could keep the boards on, they performed beautifully and
I need to purchase at least 2 more but would rather not
have this problem. Will the next size heavier release work?
A. I think you have some part numbers mixed up.
The OR12 comes with 2 OR19 (orange) releases which are heavy
tension. This is a new release for the boards in 2009 as
they used to come with black OR14 releases.
You should have been able to fish just about any water
with the OR19's. Some of the anglers are replacing the OR19
with the OR18 Snapper Release for an even more positive
hold. The Snapper is especially good for those anglers using
one of the super lines. I am not sure what release you have
on, but the above ones should help your problem.
Q. I have invested in a couple of copper line reel
and pole setups with the intent of using them with my OR12's.
I checked through your Q&A section but didn't find the
help I'm looking for.
Will my OR12's handle the copper line and if so, with how
much line trailing in the water? My boards have the standard
releases, are they adequate enough for the copper line?
How heavy of a bait would I be able to use? I would appreciate
any words of wisdom you could share with me on this subject.
A. Thanks for asking about the copper line on our
OR12 Side Planers. I would recommend the OR19 (orange) release
which became standard on the OR12's as of 2009. Give that
a try and if you're not happy with those, I would suggest
the OR18 Snapper Release. Best Chance Too uses them both
ways and is pleased with the results. The more wire you
put behind the board, the less it will go out to the side,
but since your running 200 to 500 feet behind the boat that
should not be a problem. Rig the boards with a snap swivel
in place of the rear release just to be sure you don't lose
Run anything you want on the wire and see what performs
Q. Thank you for the great products and all the information
on your website. I have successfully used your OR12's on
Lake Winnebago and the bay of Green Bay. I am also looking
forward to using them on Lake Michigan for salmon and trout.
One final question, when attaching lead core or copper to
an OR12 board, can you attach the copper or lead core directly
to the board? Thanks in advance for your help.
A. I have not had any problem putting lead core
in the releases and I think Best Chance Too is doing the
same with the copper. You may want to use the OR18 Snapper
for the copper, but give it a try before you buy new clips.
Q. I am interested in purchasing a pair of your OR12's
for deep sea and inshore fishing, specifically for striper
and tuna. However, I am concerned about these boards not
being large enough. For stripers, we typically pull a heavy
umbrella rig rigged with 9" plastic shads and up to
6 oz of weight with 65 lb braid or a Mann's Stretch 25 or
30 plugs with 30 lb mono which can dive down to 25' &
30'. When fishing offshore for tuna, trolled baits are actually
lighter, at most 1.5 to 3 oz and 65 lb braid. Are my concerns
A. The OR12 will work with that application; we
pull 14oz umbrella rigs for striper on the inland reservoirs
Q. I don't have a shad friendly bait tank (yet) but
plan to try planer boards for hybrids and stripers with
shad crankbaits & maybe swim baits. Can I use the same
size boards for these two species, and if so which model
might you recommend? The hybrids at many lakes close by
are running in the 6 lb category while my ultimate plan
is to hit Cumberland for stripers.
A. You can use the OR12 planer for live bait and
for pulling crankbaits. The new and considerably smaller
OR34 would be best for live bait only.
Q. Is the lure depth affected by a planer board?
If a lipped crankbait is supposed to run say 3'-6' when
retrieved, will running it on a planer board increase or
decrease this depth?
A. In regard to running a lipped crankbait off a
planer board, it has no effect on the depth the lure will
Q. I have 4 of your OR12/OR31 Side Planers and use
them on Lake Erie with much success. This summer I am going
fishing in Wisconsin and want a smaller board to use for
inland water walleye and small mouth. Will your new OR34
Mini Planer work for this application? What lines and terminal
tackle are they rated for?
A. The OR34 Mini Planer board will work with lines
from 6 lbs. on up. Lead core is not a problem and super
lines will work with the OR10 release that comes as standard
equipment or you can upgrade to the OR19 Adjustable Heavy
Tension Planer Board Release.
We have pulled everything from 1/16 jigs to Deep Little
Rippers and snap weights. We've even tested the OR34 Mini
Planer on steelhead with 5 colors of lead and a spoon at
3 mph with good success.
Q. How much weight can the OR34 Mini Planer board
A. We have used as much as 5 colors of lead core at 2.8
mph. We've also used snap weights up to 1 ½ ounces.
The board will sink if there is no forward motion, but it
will come up in line after you get moving.
Q. Can I use different releases on the OR34 Mini
A. Yes, all of our half size planer board releases
along with our OR16 clips can be exchanged out for the OR10
that comes as standard equipment on the OR34 Mini Planer
board. All of these half size releases and clips will bolt
Some anglers are using an additional release on the back
and physically reel in the OR34 Mini Planer to within your
arms reach and manually remove the board when fighting a
fish just like they do with our OR12 and OR31 Side Planers.
I would recommend that you use the OR34 Mini Planer board
as it comes in the package and then find your favorite method
for your fishing conditions.
Q. How do I keep the OR34 from going all of the way
down to the lure and the fish?
A. We recommend that you use an OR29 Speed Bead
or some other stop 4 to 6 feet ahead of the lure to prevent
that from happening.
Q. I live in Columbia, South Carolina and striper
fish on Lake Murray using your OR12 Side Planers. I have
wondered what type of line, mono vs braid, do you think
is best due to the wide range of stretch between the two?
How much effect on hook ups? I would also appreciate any
tips on how to rig the leader size and length?
A. I am assuming that you are fishing live bait
for stripers? I generally use 20 lb. P-Line or Suffix for
my live bait fishing. I have not seen much of a difference
with braids over that type of line. With circle hooks, you
just let the fish go and he will hook himself. I rig with
a small egg sinker on the line and then I tie a swivel to
4' of 15 lb. fluorocarbon line to my circle hook. Watch
for frays and change it with the smallest nick.
When I am using Umbrella rigs, I like to use Power Pro
line in the 50 lb. range. It will allow you to pull the
rig out of most of the snags. I also invested in a Plug
Knocker to help save my $30 U rigs!
The best tip I can give you is to fish as often as you
can and pay attention to what caught your last fish.
Q. How much weight can the Off Shore Tackle in line
side planer boards support for running snap weights?
A. I recommend staying under 3 ounces for walleye
until you have some time on the boards. Heavier weights
will sink the board but it will come up when you start moving
Q. Can you run more than one line off of the in line
A. No, in lines are meant to only run on one line
per board. To run multiple lines off of a planer board,
you would need to have a Riviera mast and dual or triple
planer board system.
Q. Can diving disks be used on the leader end of
the in line board instead of lead sinkers?
A. Yes, we use the smaller version of the Dipsey
Diver for walleye.
Q. What controls how far out to the side of the boat
the in line boards run?
A. The amount of line you let out will control the
distance the board will run out to the side of the boat.
Q. What release do you recommend for pulling dipsey's
off of dual planer boards?
A. I recommend using the OR17 Medium Tension Planer
Board Release and they come in a 24 pack for salmon or the
OR3 Light Tension Planer Board Release for walleye and this
item comes in a 50 pack.
Q. Why don't you include the pigtail and speed bead
in with each OR12L or OR12R Side Planer?
A. The Side Planers are ready to use as they come
out of the package. There are about 20 different ways to
rig them and we can't include every way to attach the boards
or most anglers would have a lot of spare parts they don't
need and/or complaining they were getting charged for items
unnecessary to them. No matter how we do it, someone always
want to have it different so we try to package our products
the way MOST anglers would be using them. You can always
use a good snap swivel if you don't want to purchase a pigtail
or you can put a barrel swivel on the line instead of a
Q. I am using the Side Planers with large baits and
sometimes the boards do not seem to be running properly.
What could be causing this?
A. Always make sure the release is mounted properly
on the board. Make sure that you are letting out enough
line so each board will be running back (not straight out
to the side) about 60 degrees from the boat. Your rod should
be as high as possible so you are not dragging any line
in the water.
Q. I have used clips on planers for years. I have
some of the first ones you guys sold. Anyway, I have had
a few problems fighting big fish & the planer board.
I would like to use a planer board and just send releases
that release down the line when the fish hits. I have purchased
a new set of your in line side planers and I want to use
a short stiff rod on each side of my boat with the planers
only on them. Then send a clip with my line on it. I do
not want to use more than one line on each planer at a time.
My question is, can this product run true with no drag from
the lure on the back end of the planer?
A. I am assuming when you say big fish you mean large
walleye? I have taken many walleye over 10# with our side
planers and cannot say I have lost very many. That said,
running the second line off the tow line would make the
board tip over towards you and unload itself. If you were
using a small lure, one that doesn't drag much, you could
get by with it. I have run a second line as we show in our
newspaper often, but only with the above mentioned lures.
I feel you should go to the large size boards such as the
Riviera dual boards for the application you want to use.
Q. Which would be the best boards for muskie fishing
lures and higher speeds? I would be trolling with braided
super line in 50# to 80#.
A. The best setup for you would be the Orange OR31.
It has a heaver clip and the attachment on the back would
allow the board to slide down towards the fish. It should
work fine with the heavy line you're talking about. Remember,
with all the heavy drag the big lure will be putting on
the board it won't go out to the side as far as it will
with walleye equipment.
Q. I am purchasing a set of planer boards and I need
some clarification about the releases. I use 30lb PowerPro
and I usually fish for walleye. Can I use the OR18 adjustable
release for all fishing conditions or do you recommend having
A. The Snapper (OR18) would be the ticket for that
application and for mono as well. You may have to tighten
the screw in the bottom of the Snapper a little for the
slippery PowerPro. Do it about 1/4 turn at a time.
Q. I've never used in line boards before. I want
to pick up the OR12TF Tattle Flag Kit for walleye. Is there
complete instructions included? I don't have a clue. Also
I run 10# FireLine on everything; will the releases hold
that small of diameter? My release for my downrigger does
so I'm hoping for the same. Lastly, I was going to use the
line counters on the Cabela's Whuppin' Sticks and they are
7 1/2 feet long with medium action. Any thoughts?
A. I think you will be happy with the OR12 or the
OR31 (Orange) Side Planer. The tattle flag kit will work
with your FireLine. You may want to add the OR18 (Snapper)
on the tow board or wrap the FireLine as it shows in the
directions included with both the boards and the upgrade
kits. We have all the previous Off Shore Release newspaper
articles online on this website. A lot of these articles
are about using boards and tattle flags.
Your choice of rods will be good. I like a 7 1/2' rod myself.
Q. I recently purchased two of your planer boards
with the tattle flag upgrade kit. I read the instructions
very carefully and assembled the boards accordingly. I have
used the boards once. I had trouble with the boards in my
opinion not running correctly. They ran real low in the
back with the front of the board almost out of the water.
With the slanted portion of the board almost out of the
water the board would in no way come close to running parallel
with the boat. I was first running three colors of lead
core line behind the board and figured that this might be
the problem even though I had read you could run three colors
without any problem. I completely removed the lead core
and attached standard fishing line with a light pulling
lure. Had the same problem with the back of the board down
and the front way up. I know by the front of the board running
this high that there is no way that the board will run even
close to parallel with the boat. I do not expect it to run
completely parallel with my boat but I really think it should
do better than it does. About the best I can do is 15 feet
out to the side of the boat. I have studied the board and
tried to figure out why it wants to ride low in the back.
There is the long slot in the board with the lead weight
installed. In front of this is a smaller slot which contains
no lead weight. I was wondering if adding lead to the front
slot would bring the board down in the front. I think if
more of the taper of the board was in contact with the water
it would move the board farther out. Do you have any suggestions?
A. The board is running correctly, the nose high
attitude is there by design to keep it from diving in rough
water. If you put any weight in the small space you will
have your hands full with the board diving. I think your
problem is thinking the board will run parallel with the
boat. It will run about 60 degrees back; the angle will
be a little further with lead core and less with a small
spinner and no weight. This is because of the increased
We have some of the top anglers in the world fishing our
products and there are many articles and videos showing
the boards running well away from the boat and angled back.
I cannot understand how you can only be getting 15' from
the boat with yours. I personally have run a full core with
a rotator for salmon and achieved more distance than that.
I would like you to be happy with them and I am sure you
will once you understand the mechanics of the Side Planer.
Q. I wanted to ask what planer boards and releases
you would recommend for in line trolling for muskie? We
use mostly 80lb braid with an occasional 65lb braid and
"medium" diving 8"-12" crankbaits. Troll
speed is around 3.5-4 mph. Any information on what products
and how to do an initial set up would be greatly appreciated.
A. I would use the OR31 (orange) side planer. It
comes with the OR19 release and I would give that a try
but if it did not handle the size lure you're using then
get the Snapper Release (OR18). I think the way the OR31
comes should work though.
Q. My buddy is getting started in walleye trolling
and purchased four of your snapper releases for his Off
Shore planer boards. The problem is, when the releases are
tightened enough to hold on FireLine, they are very difficult
Any suggestions? I have older snapper releases on older
Off Shore boards and don't seem to have that problem.
A. We haven't made any changes on the Snappers.
Q. I use the OR12 (yellow) boards with flags. When
I am pulling in average wind and pulling Bomber 24A's at
1.8-2 mph, the flags go down about ½ way when I troll
and is hard to tell when a fish is on. You drag small fish
for minutes without notice. Is there a way to remedy this?
I use FireLine and usually have 125' to 180" out on
the line counter depending on depth out of line. Is there
a heavier or lighter spring?
A. As long as there is room for movement, the flags
should show changes in drag on the lure. Watch them close
as sometimes the flag will come up instead of going down
with smaller fish. This is because they lower the drag from
the big lipped cranks. I have noticed this more on Reef
Runners than anything else.
Also, you might try removing the spring from the hole in
the flag and putting it around the stem above the triangle
where the flag is screwed into the board. Some anglers have
also cut the spring at the bend and re-bent it, giving it
even more tension.
Q. I have a pontoon and wanted to know if you have
customers that utilize your product from a pontoon platform,
and what kind of obstacles, or unique to pontoon situations
they might have?
Also need to know if planer boards are good for shallow
water walleye applications. I would be fishing in mainly
Lastly can you run live bait rigs from behind the boards?
I see a lot of articles but most of them refer to crankbaits
and the like.
Any suggestions of product that would be best used, tips/tricks
etc, would be much appreciated.
A. There is nothing different you have to do to fish
using the Off Shore Side Planers from your pontoon boat.
Rod holders would be nice. The water you're talking about
is perfect for Off Shore Side Planers since you can stay
away from those shallow fish with the pontoon. You may want
to rig the boards with either one of the heavier tension
releases or use the slip back method with a snap swivel
in place of the rear clip. There are a lot of articles about
rigging boards on our website. Keep the rods as vertical
as possible to get the board further from the pontoon and
go fishing. I run snap weights, in line weights and spinners
all the time off the boards. Figure the depth you want to
reach and clip it on the board.
Q. I tried using your OR12 Side Planers fishing for
salmon on Lake Michigan with lead core line. The line at
the planer is mono. I replaced the rear release with a snap
swivel. I ran the line through the snap and the release
to the rod.
I think the lead core line puts too much drag on the line.
The release just will not hold. Any suggestions?
A. You are right about the small black OR14 release
not being the one for lead core. We recommend the orange
OR19 release or some anglers use the OR18 Snapper Release.
I think if you change to either of these you will solve
the problem of heavy lead core fishing.
Q. I'm interested in getting Off Shore planer boards,
but I'm not sure how you would set it up. Do you use live
bait with them or lures and is it made to go deep. I was
looking at the OR12 with the flags. I fish for stripers,
A. For your application, I think you would be best
off using the orange OR31 Side Planer SST. They are set
up to trip with big powerful fish like striper and also
lakers. There is no flag on the OR31's, but it is not needed
with the way those fish hit a lure.
I have run the OR31's for striper with live gizzards, blue
runners and also with smaller umbrella rigs. Most of the
striper anglers are switching to the OR31 orange board.
You can add a flag to them if you want. Both boards are
exactly the same with only the rigging being different for
different applications. Instructions are included the packages.
Q. I bought a set (Left & Right) of your OR12
Side Planers for walleye fishing in Southern Ontario (Bay
of Quinte) Canada. I have followed all instructions but
am having a problem. The planers ride with the front end
up too high and they do not pull out to the side of the
There is a lead weight in a slot along the bottom of the
planers below the styrofoam floatation material up to a
partition in the slot; from the partition to the front of
the board (approximately 2") there is no lead weight
in the slot. Is this correct?
Any idea what I am doing wrong?
A. The board is supposed to ride like that. By keeping
the nose high you prevent it from diving when a wave pushes
it under the water. If you are switching from the big boards
to in line boards, you will not get the same distance out
the side you do with the big boards. That is the nature
of the in line planer board. After you use them, you will
get comfortable with them and begin catching fish.
Q. I was wondering if you would sell me a set of
6 Off Shore planer boards, pre-rigged with the tattle flag
and the adjustable clamp-down clips. I have looked into
buying all of this separately; however, it gets very pricey
and is a lot of work to set all of that up. Why don't you
offer them that way "off-the-shelf"?
A. We do not specially make up the pre-rigging assemblies
due to the fact that we need to stay within what our retailers
sell and have available (which limits SKU's). Usually we
have found that most anglers use the boards with different
setups during different fishing adventures. So when they
purchase the accessories, they still have all of the original
equipment to use under different situations that would produce
more fish for them. The boards were on the market long before
the tattle flag system and then the OR18's came out so this
is another reason for not packaging or specializing in setups.
As the fishing venues change, we will be coming out with
more options for the rigging and usage of the boards. The
accessories allow the angler more of an adaptation to their
needs at a particular time which may change by the hour
of fishing and the conditions.
The cam action of the OR18's will not work with the tattle
flag setup, only the OR16's. You can purchase the items
separately for converting your boards over to tattle flag
setup if you already have the OR16's.
Q. What is the main difference between the yellow
and the orange Off Shore planer boards? We have been using
a pair of orange OR31's for pulling half cords of lead core.
My fishing buddy just purchased a second set of yellow boards
for the second set of lead core and he said they looked
the same. What's the difference?
A. Actually the boards are just a different color
and how they are set up originally (i.e. releases/flags
etc.). You need different releases to do different things
with the boards; this is why we came out with the OR31's.
Q. I am interested in buying a planer board. From
talking to people, yours is #1. My question is; I fish rivers
in Oregon, Idaho and Washington. Are they capable of being
used fishing from the bank and if so, what model should
I purchase. It would be used for salmon and steelhead in
the 5 to 50 lb. range. Also can I purchase one from you
or a dealer?
A. Thanks for asking about which model to purchase.
I would recommend the OR31 for your application. The OR31
model will stay on the line while you fight the fish and
it would be very unlikely to come off unless your line breaks.
For your application, I would recommend using 20# line since
you will not be able to retrieve the board should the line
break. The best place to purchase our products would be
from an area dealer or one of the big retailers like Cabela's,
Scheel's or Gander Mountain. We do have them available on
this website if you cannot get what you need at your local
Q. I live in Colorado so the primary fish is trout,
but I also fish for salmon, pike, lake trout, walleye, striper
etc. frequently. I use 10 lb. to 14 lb. mono the most. I
troll plugs (to depths of 25ft.), spoons, spinners, etc.
I can't tell from your web site the difference between the
OR31 and the OR12. What board I should use for my varied
A. I would recommend the OR12. The reason is that
while both boards are the same size, the OR12 comes with
a flag and can be read a little easier. You can rig the
options (tattle flag, snapper, etc.) on either board. You
will use the board to tell when you have a fish on so you
can reel it in to take it off and then finish landing the
For larger, more powerful fish like northerns and striper
you rig the board with the snap swivel on the back and let
it slide down to a designated stop ahead of the lure.
Don't let the boards intimidate you. A little trial and
error and you will be writing me with new ways to run the
Off Shore Side Planer!
Q. Can I use your boards for offshore salt water
trolling? How about snap weights?
A. You can use both the snap weights and the boards
in salt water. We use them for the FLW striper tour and
when fishing in the Gulf. As with anything in salt water,
care must be taken to wash all the salt water from the snap
weights and the boards. I would recommend the OR31 Side
Planer for your application.
Q. I was wondering if the OR31 planer board is suited
for running lead core line. I want to run lead core line
for walleye and have had some problems in the past in certain
situations with the OR12 boards.
A. The OR31 will be fine for lead core as well as
the OR12. Many of the guys are changing the release on the
Side Planers to the OR18 Snapper Release when running lead
core because it has a larger pad area and holds the lead
core and FireLine. You may want to try the OR18 before you
buy new boards just for lead core.
Q. I am trolling with 14 lb. x 6 FireLine and my
boards are constantly coming off. I am looping the line.
Do I need different clips?
A. Yes, you do need a different release for that
thin FireLine. The standard release on the board is for
mono in the 10 to 12 pound range. You need the OR19 (orange)
release or the OR18 Snapper Release.
Q. I was recently at a fishing show trying to get
a look at the new lead core/copper board that I heard you
were coming out with. The ones at the show looked liked
the same product that had been in production in 2006. Am
I missing something?
A. What you are missing is the new board we came
out with is now orange. The OR31 Side Planer SST comes without
the flag and has an OR19 Heavy Tension Release along with
a pigtail on the back for easy on and off application. The
OR31 is the same size as the yellow OR12. We made the OR31
to answer requests from anglers that rigged the OR12 that
way anyhow but changed the color to orange so it is still
really visible, even without the flag. Anything that fits
on the OR12 will fit on the OR31.
Q. I have wanted to purchase a planer board. I live
in Texas and we troll a lot on our lakes as most people
do elsewhere. We troll with deep diving lures and in lines
as well as lead jigging lures. Will the Off Shore boards
work in this situation? I was told by Bass Pro Shop that
the Off Shore board comes in 2 sizes?
A. The Off Shore Side Planer comes in 2 models that
are both the same size (not 2 different sizes). The OR12
is yellow that comes with a flag and 2 release system. The
OR31 is orange and comes with a pigtail on the back along
with one heavy tension release on the tow arm but does not
have a flag. From your question, I think the OR31 is what
Q. I have an OR12 planer with tattle flag; I can
not properly hook up the tow line from boat to planer. The
planer just lies sideways and it will not tow right. I have
tried several connections and it will still not work. Everything
is hooked up properly near as we can tell. I can't find
anything in the instructions to hook up the main tow line.
Please advise as to what we are doing wrong.
A. The OR12 is not meant to be attached to a tow
line. It is for using in line with your fishing rod and
Q. I have been running your in line planers for years;
great product, love them. I spend a lot of my time on the
Bay of Quinte in Ontario catching the monster eyes and your
Off Shores have played a key part in that. I have one concern.
I recently purchased 2 more sets of in line OR12's to go
with the 2 sets I already have. My problem is that the new
ones I just bought do not track the same as the previous
sets. They do not pull as hard from the boat. It is impossible
for them to run in a tight formation as they will not line
up and run in one line as they should.
For example, today I was on very calm water (like a mirror);
my older boards pulled right out almost to a perfect 45
degree angle from the boat and the newer ones I got were
both lagging behind the older ones by roughly 30-40 feet.
This was running with 75-175 feet of line out.
I have inspected all boards carefully and the only difference
is that my older boards have a metal bracket that holds
the front release and the newer ones have a plastic bracket.
I have installed snapper releases (OR18's) on all board
so that is not the issue. What am I doing wrong?
A. You are the only person that has ever mentioned
the difference in the boards since we switched to the new
bracket. At that time we also made some tooling changes
in the board and changed the weight from hand poured to
spinner molded due to difficulty in finding a hand pour
company. The new lead is approximately 4 tenths of an ounce
We discontinued the metal brackets about 10 years ago and
have been making the plastic brackets with no complaints.
You might try adding a little bit (1/2 oz) of lead to the
bottom of the board. Give that a try if you must have them
running equally. From what I have heard about Quinte, you
should have no problem realizing you have a fish on.
Q. Can I use dipsey or jet divers off of your side
A. You can use jets up to size 40 and smaller dipsey's
off the boards. They cannot be used with tattle flag's though.
Q. I picked up a pack of your yellow OR10 planer
board releases to replace the releases on a couple of the
Yellow Bird planer boards. On my initial attempt at using
them, I couldn't keep the line in the release. It would
pop out almost immediately. I was using 20# mono pulling
a surface plug and/or spoon with a ½ oz weight. The
spring was pushed up near the pinch pads. Am I doing something
wrong or were these the wrong things to get for this purpose?
A. The OR10's are too light for that application,
you need the black OR14's which are the next level up in
tension. If you were fishing salmon or high speed, the orange
OR19 would be your best choice.
Q. Can you use small divers off the side planers?
If not, how do you achieve the 30'-40' depths?
A. You can use small divers and jets to reach those
depths as well as using in line sinkers and the Off Shore
Snap Weight System.
Q. Would it be possible or have you ever heard of
anyone attaching the OR12 to a mast and running the release
down the mast line with a shower curtain hook/quick clip?
What is the biggest (deepest) Jet Diver the OR12 can pull
and do you know the effective depths of this rig?
A. You should not use an Off Shore Side Planer with
a mast. It will not handle the weight of the tow line or
several releases from the tow line. Riviera Trolling Systems
makes a mast system for using multiple lines.
The OR12 will pull any size jet, you just will not get out
to the side as far as you increase the size. As far as how
deep the jet will run is up to the dive curve of the jet.
That information should be on the Jet packaging or in the
Crankbaits in Depth book which gives dive curves on many
different kinds of jets, dipsey's and lures.
Q. I just don't understand how I am supposed to reel
in a fish with three planer boards that have the tattle
tail flag system on them? I mean, I have three boards running
on the same side. But when a fish gets on, I reel it in
and get all tangled up with the other boards or lines. So,
what am I doing wrong?
A. When running multiple boards you have several
ways to bring a fish in when he hits one of the outside
1. Drop the inside boards back until they are far enough
back to allow you to land the fish by bringing it in ahead
of the other board(s). Best with long leads.
2. Reel in the inside board and set it in the motor well
while you fight the other fish.
3. Let the fish pull the board back until he clears the
rest of the boards. This is good when using short leads.
Set the hook with a firm pull on the rod, not a BASS fishing
jerk! Then let him pull it out of formation.
These are some of the methods we have used to help cut down
on multiple boards.
Q. What I like to know is if there are diagrams on
clipping the releases to the planer boards? Do you have
to have a trolling mast to pull the boards so the line would
release from the board all together? If I have a salmon
on, how would you clip your board so you would not loose
it? I would think when it pulls it down and under and it
would be hard to get it up. What is the best way and what
releases do I need and how do I clip them?
A. The OR12 and OR31 are in line boards, meaning
they are meant to be attached to the fishing line. This
website has articles on how to attach them to your line
with several different methods. For salmon I would recommend
the OR31 which has a slide back method for the hard fighting
fish like striper, salmon and trout.
No mast is needed with in line planers.
Q. Which are the outside lines if using core? Is
the full core put out first and then the half core next
(on the same side) or vice versa? I can never remember how
it is supposed to go to prevent tangles? Also, when trolling
on Lake Michigan, I have a hard time keeping the board to
stay clipped. I know that others use them with no problem.
What am I doing wrong?
A. When setting out lead core, you want to set your
shallowest running core out first, then follow it up with
the deepest core. Set them up in a "V" pattern
like a flock of geese would fly behind the boat. Therefore,
when one of the outside rods goes off, it will clear over
the top of the deeper stuff on the inside.
As for your boards tripping when others do not seem to have
any problems, let me recommend upgrading to the OR18 Adjustable
Snapper Release. The OR18 goes on the front of the board
in place of the orange release. You can set this up so it
does not trip until you release it at the boat.
Q. I purchased 2 yellow Off Shore in line planers
last year. I am running #30 PowerPro braided line on my
Daiwa Sealine level wind reels. This high quality braided
line continues to slip through the pads of the release.
A. The instruction sheets are included with every
Side Planer and explains the different types of releases
for different applications. Your use of PowerPro is an application
which requires a special release or at least wrapping the
line around the release once. We have many top pro anglers
using these products for all applications including salt
water and muskie. My recommendation would be to add the
OR18 Snapper Release to the bracket and use the pigtail
on the back.
Q. I want to buy a set of planer boards and was wondering
if you can suggest what boards to buy for walleye, salmon
and lake trout (1 set for all three species) and also if
you can run a dipsey diver off them.
A. Either board will work. We made the OR31 with
a different attachment after hearing from a lot of salmon
anglers. The boards are the same size and work the same.
The OR12 has a flag and the OR31 doesn't, but a flag can
be added if desired.