If you have avoided fishing with dipsy divers, then you are missing out on a lot of good fishing.

The dipsy diver enables you to get your lures into the strike zone, by allowing you to go deep and it works as a side planer enabling you to run lures off to the sides of the boat, thus locating fish that have spooked away because of the boat shadow and motor noise.

My choice of all methods possible is using Planer boards….That’s a subject of it’s own covered on another article.

Lead lining is another super method, but it does have a big drawback!

The big problem using lead line, is when the line back lashes…..I’ve lost many spools of lead line trying to remove tangles. See my article called:  “the good, the bad, the ugly” all about fishing with lead line.

Now getting back to Dipsy Divers.

If you are fishing with several dipsy divers off the same side, it is best to fish with different rod lengths so that the rod tips are separated. Using a downrigger rod will also work but sometimes they are a little too stiff, the rod should have flexibility.

There are line counter reels on the market which do the counting for you, but learning the “rap” on your reel is just as accurate. By counting the line raps, you can determine the amount of line that was let out. The amount of line out will affect just how deep the diver will be running. Regular monofilament in the 17# test range will do the job, but I highly recommend using a braided no stretch line. A couple of nice things about the new braided lines is that they possess great line strength, yet have a small diameter which is important for enabling the divers to get deep into the water.

Use braided line as your main line to the Dipsy , but from the diver to the lure, use a leader made of regular mono line (20#) or a snubber if you are using lighter leader line. When the fish hits the lure, you want a little stretch or “give” so that the sudden shock doesn’t break the line.

Now that we have the proper set up as far as rod, reel and line, let’s take a look at the dipsy diver itself. It is called a directional diver because it is not only designed to dive downward, but also off either the right or left side of the boat. Remember though, the more it runs off to the side, the less it will dive. At the top of the diver is an adjustable release rod, where the main line is attached. Proper adjustment of this rod is very important. If the adjustment is too tight, it will not release and if too loose, it will release prematurely. The easiest way to adjust it, is to set the diver into the water, move at your normal trolling speed, let out 30-50 feet of line, then try releasing the diver by pulling the fishing rod with a fast jerk. If it releases properly and does not release just by the water drag while trolling, it should be fine.

Because the Dipsy is designed to stay in the water by water pressure on the face of it, deep running crankbaits or other baits with large diving bills will tend to make the dipsy slide out of the water. Remember to restrict your stick baits to ones that have a smaller diving bill with capabilities under 8 feet. There are charts that tell you how deep a dipsy is running in relationship to the amount of line is let out. If you have a line counter reel, it is easy to look and see, and reset the rod again after you have landed a fish. 

A few other things to remember about fishing with divers is that letting more line out will not necessarily make it dive deeper. The water resistance against the line will tend to make the dipsy rise after about 175 feet. There can be an advantage in letting out a lot of line, even though it may make the dipsy rise. You are getting further away from boat shadow and noise, which in many cases will cause a fish to hit, when it might not otherwise.

With all the methods and technical equipment at our disposal, it would seem that we should be able to catch fish at will, but remember, the method used is only effective if used properly…..any method can be a problem if you don’t know what you are doing!

Like every thing else when fishing, experience is always the best teacher!