Downriggers consist of four major components, the weight, cable, pole, and a spool. A fishing line is attached to the downrigger cable as a result of a "line release." The weight is normally a five-to-ten-pound mass of lead that is connected to the stainless steel wire. The spool is brought up either by a manual crank or via an electric motor.
In addition to attaching a lure to the fishing line, an oval piece of metal (often hammered or curved for reflective purposes) called a dodger is often used to attract fish from greater distances. The types of lures used to troll with using downriggers range from metal "spoons" that are often decorated using color tape, to plastic or rubber "squids" that also vary in color.