Understanding The Different Types of Outriggers

For serious offshore fisherman, outriggers are considered essential equipment. The purpose of outriggers are to widen a spread and create ability to add more lines in the water without fear of entanglement. In this article we will compare the benefits and uses of different types of outriggers on offshore fishing boats.


Fixed Length Outriggers

Fixed length outriggers are the most basic and traditional type of outriggers that are still popular among offshore anglers. Fixed outriggers are typically made of sturdy materials such as aluminum or fiberglass and are designed to handle heavy loads. They are also relatively affordable easy to install and typically can only swing outward.

The main benefit of fixed outriggers is their durability and reliability. They are built to last and can withstand the harsh offshore environment. They are also very stable and provide a solid platform for multiple fishing lines. Fixed outriggers are ideal for anglers who prefer a simple and straightforward fishing setup. 


Telescoping Outriggers

Telescoping outriggers are designed to be adjustable in length, which allows anglers to extend their fishing reach and be able to lower the height of the overall vessel. They are made up of several sections that can be extended or retracted as needed. Telescoping outriggers are typically made of lightweight materials such as aluminum or carbon fiber and are easy to maneuver.

The main benefit of telescoping outriggers is their versatility. They can be adjusted to different lengths depending on the fishing conditions, and they can be collapsed for easy storage when not in use. Telescoping outriggers are ideal for anglers who want a flexible and adaptable fishing setup.

Mounting Styles: Gunwale Or Hardtop

Conventional outriggers are designed with a side-mounted style, where they are attached to the gunwales of the boat. This feature allows for efficient trolling and is popular among mid-size fishing boats. Gunwale-mounted outriggers are less costly than the hardtop-mounted, but they can be obstructive depending on the boat and only come in certain sizes. 

Hardtop-mounted outriggers are mounted at a higher point on the boat which provides more space for those on board.  This comes at a price, as hardtop-mounted outriggers are usually more expensive and you may have to climb on top of the hardtop to put them out which can be risky, especially if it is a rough day offshore. 


Carbon Fiber Outriggers

Carbon fiber outriggers are the newest and most advanced type of outriggers available on the market. Lightweight and incredibly strong, carbon fiber allows for a thinner and more flexible option which is designed to reduce drag and improve fuel efficiency.

Easy to maneuver and quickly adjusted to different lengths and positions as needed, carbon fiber outriggers are ideal for anglers who want the most advanced and high-performance outriggers available.

In conclusion, outriggers are essential equipment for offshore fishing boats, and choosing the right type of outrigger depends on your personal fishing style and preferences.

No matter which type of outrigger you choose, it will undoubtedly help you to extend your fishing reach, get more lines in the water, and improve your chances of catching more fish!