Best Crab Davits: Top 7 Manual and Electric Picks

October 1, 2021

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Looking for a reliable crab davit to make your pulling experience less tiring and more efficient? Then this article is for you! Get ready to see what the best crab davits on the market today are.

Today, we’re reviewing the 7 best crab davits on the market and sharing a detailed buying guide to help find the right product for your needs and budget.

In a Hurry? Here’s Our Top Picks for Manual & Electric

4 Best Manual Crab Davits

1. Best for Kayaks, Small Boats, and Jon Boats — 750 Trap-Ease Line Hauler by Scotty

Up first in the manual department, we have one of the highest-rated options on the market when it comes to pulling in crab pots; the Trap-Ease Line Hauler from the brand Scotty.

This particular model is ideal for smaller boats, Jon boats, and kayaks. It’s extremely well constructed and is super easy to handle.

You can mount this unit on any rod holder by Scotty. It’s equipped with a big roller and a pivoting head to minimize the stress resulting from the retrieval of crab pots.

Additionally, this manual davit accommodates a line size of up to half an inch in diameter. We also like the extended design of the arm as it lets you collect traps easily without running the gunnel.

Not to mention, you can mount the arm on your Jon boat or kayak to reel in crabs without any hiccups.

Specs

  • Up to 1/2 inch line size
  • The arm gets extended to reach over the gunnel.
  • Arm angle is adjustable
  • Compatible with Scotty rod holders

What We Like

  • The arm is both adjustable and lockable
  • Easy to mount
  • The use of reinforced nylon material boosts durability

What We Don’t Like

  • The arm may be a bit too short to reach over the side of some larger boats.

2. Best for Large Boats — Premium Heavy Duty Crab Pot Davit by Discovery Bay Marine Gear

If your boat is on the larger side, then you’re better off considering the Premium Heavy Duty Crab Davit by Discovery Bay Marine Gear. This is a sturdy, high-quality unit that offers lots of value for money, so if you’re worried about wasting your money, don’t be.

This unit is built out of schedule 80 aluminum, designed to be broken down into two parts for convenient transport and storage. It extends to more than 6 feet in height and about 3 feet over the boat’s side.

The construction of this manual hauler allows you to pull crab pots as heavy as 200 pounds. If you’re a large boat owner, investing in such a davit is a smart idea to avoid scratching or damaging the side of your boat upon repeated retrievals.

What’s more, this unit allows you to upgrade to an electric puller model and keep using the provided mounting system.

That being said, we have to say that this crab davit is one of the most expensive options out there. We can’t really justify such a price tag for smaller boats, which is a huge part of why we recommend it for larger boats where protecting the gunnel is far more important.

Do keep in mind that this cost is directly affected by the superior quality of the unit and the high weight capacity compared to other manual options.

Specs

  • Stands 76 inches tall
  • 34-inch maximum reach
  • Has a maximum lift capacity of 200 pounds
  • Schedule 80 aluminum material
  • Equipped with Folbe 8-inch pulley block.
  • includes UHMW sleeved brackets for mounting

What We Like

  • Very durable schedule 80 aluminum construction
  • The reach is incredibly long
  • Can pull pots as heavy as 200 pounds

What We Don’t Like

  • Quite expensive
  • You can’t mount it onto a rod holder

3. Best for Rail Mounting — F010 Rail Mount Pulley Crab Davit by Folbe

The Folbe F010 Crab Davit is a bit unique from the other option on today’s list and you can guess why at first glance. Not only is it significantly more compact than its competitors, but you can also mount it directly onto the rail of your boat.

Generally speaking, the Folbe F010 is made to target a more specific audience. So, if you need a small unit or you’re concerned about the usual hassle of installing davits, then this product can be just right for you.

Performance-wise, the F010 Pulley works smoothly and efficiently. However, you should keep in mind that its reach over the side of your boat is pretty much non-existent, so you may be risking the condition of the gunnel by subjecting it to hits from the trap or pot during retrieval.

This won’t be much of an issue if your boat is on the smaller side, but it’s something worth considering for owners of larger boats.

Specs

  • Up to 1/2 inch line size
  • Compatible with rail thickness from 3/4 to 1 1/4 inches
  • Very compact design

What We Like

  • The smallest crab davits on the market
  • You can mount it directly onto your boat rail

What We Don’t Like

  • Doesn’t extend over the side of your boat, which leaves the gunnel vulnerable to hits from the trap during retrieval

4. Best for Easy Transport and Storage — Folbe F011S Removable Line Pulley Crab Davit

Our final choice in the manual department is another unit from Folbe; the F011S Removable Line Pulley Crab Davit. It’s similar to its previous sibling in terms of size, but it’s a little bit bigger.

As for mounting, you can attach this davit directly onto your fishing rod holder. Consequently, you won’t be very impressed by the reach since it’s limited.

Additionally, the F011S has a maximum lift capacity of 70 pounds. This isn’t the highest capacity on the market, but it makes up for it by offering very convenient, fuss-free installation, disassembly, and storage.

Unfortunately, you’ll be facing the same issue as with the Folbe F010 due to the smaller design of the unit. The gunnel will likely get damaged by hits and scratched from the trap or pot during the retrieval process.

Again, this won’t be much of a problem if your boat is on the smaller side, but it’s something worth considering for owners of larger boats.

Specs

  • Up to 1/2 inch line size
  • Mounts onto fishing rod holders
  • The side mount automatically locks
  • Compact design

What We Like

  • You can mount it directly onto a fishing rod holder
  • Very compact
  • Easy to install and store

What We Don’t Like

  • Like the previous version, it doesn’t extend over the side of your boat, which leaves the gunnel vulnerable to hits from the trap during retrieval

3 Best Electric Crab Davits

1. Best for Lighter Crab Pots — 2500 Electric Line Trap and Crab Pot Puller by Scotty

Up first in the electric department is the 2500 Electric Crab Davit by Scotty. This unit efficiently pulls line traps and pots, particularly suitable for crab and prawn fishing.

Compared to other electric models, the Scotty 2500 has a compact design that deems it ideal for use on smaller boats and makes it easy to transport and store.

This unit comes with a generous 2-year warranty, which means you don’t need to worry about any issues that might arise. Additionally, if you already have a Scotty downrigger mount on your boat, you can attach this davit to it.

The Scotty 2500 is equipped with a 12-volt motor that generates enough torque for pulling in line at a speed of 120 feet per minute. What’s more, this hauler and puller can accomplish a line size ranging from 1/4 to ⅜ inches, operated with a simple On/Off switch.

As far as durability goes, this crab davit is made out of stainless steel and composite to ensure a tough build and a long-lasting service. 

Specs

  • The unit weighs around 6.75 pounds
  • Line pull speed is 120 feet per minute.
  • 12-volt engine
  • Between 1/4 and 3/8 inches line size
  • Has a maximum lift capacity of 100 pounds
  • Stainless steel and composite materials
  • Simple On/Off switch

What We Like

  • This unit can pull much of line just a minute or 2
  • Straightforward operation
  • Durable construction
  • Powerful motor by the standards of recreational use
  • Covered by a 2-year warranty

What We Don’t Like

  • The arm can be a bit too short for some boats
  • Not the highest lift capacity

2. Best for Quick Retrieval — Crab Pot Puller and Line Hauler by Trac Outdoors

Next up, we have a reliable candidate from Trac Outdoors. This crab davit is equipped with a powerful 12-volt engine that provides enough torque to hail line and pull pots at an impressive speed of 150 feet per minute.

The Trac Outdoor crab davit is a fantastic choice if you’re looking for a recreational unit that operates as quickly as possible. It has a maximum lift capacity of 110 pounds and the package includes all accessories required for mounting so you won’t have to buy extra parts.

Similar to the previous Scotty model, the Trac Outdoor electric crab davit operates is backed up by a 2-year warranty.

Additionally, this unit operates very quietly and is rather simple to install. It’s also pretty lightweight, which facilitates its transport and storage.

The Trac Outdoors crab davit offers good value for money, especially if you need to get the job done fast. It’s built to last with a heavy-duty aluminum frame and a corrosion-resistant epoxy powder coating.

Specs

  • Line pull speed is 150 feet per minute.
  • 12-volt engine
  • Has a maximum lift capacity of 110 pounds
  • Heavy-duty aluminum frame
  • Corrosion-resistant epoxy powder coating
  • Simple On/Off switch
  • The unit weighs around 22 pounds

What We Like

  • The very fast retrieval process
  • Can handle up to 110 pounds
  • Straightforward operation
  • The motor runs quietly
  • Has a portable design
  • Backed up by a 2-year warranty.

What We Don’t Like

  • On the heavier side
  • Not optimized for operating away from slack water conditions

3. Best for Heavier Crab Pots — Line Hauler and Pot Puller Davit by Five Oceans

Last but not least, we have one of the top-rated crab davits on the market from Five Oceans. This line hauler and pot puller aren’t only suitable for crab traps, but it also works great for various other trap types such as prawns, lobsters, and shrimps.

This unit is the most powerful option on today’s list of electric davit models, equipped with a strong 12-volt motor that produces enough power to handle a maximum lift capacity of 190 pounds.

Additionally, the Five Oceans crab davit sports a rugged construction that features stainless steel and aluminum materials. Besides being durable, this unit is also lightweight considering its capabilities. It’s even designed to maximize portability with a folding arm and a detachable design that facilitate transport and storage.

Ideally, you want to mount the Five Oceans crab davit on a small or medium-sized boat. Its price tag isn’t too high or too low, so it can be a good investment if you need a reliable electric model with plenty of lifting power.

This unit comes with a free rotating arm that can be useful at many times. But keep in mind that it’s not auto-locking, so you should always remember to secure it in place. 

Specs

  • Line pull speed is 115 feet per minute.
  • 12-volt engine
  • Has a maximum lift capacity of 190 pounds
  • Heavy-duty stainless and aluminum construction 
  • Has a rotating, foldable arm
  • 12-volt motor with a 900-watt power output

What We Like

  • Durable materials
  • Features a free rotating arm that you can easily move
  • A very capable engine with an impressive lift capacity
  • Easily portable thanks to the foldable and detachable design
  • Great value for money

What We Don’t Like

  • Requires more maintenance compared to other electric options
  • Heavier than the rest of the candidates on the list

How to Choose the Best Crab Davit

When shopping for a crab davit, the last thing you should do is blindly choose whatever comes up first on your search page. Instead, there are a few factors that you should consider beforehand to make sure you’re purchasing a product that fulfills your pulling needs and matches your boat. Here are the most important ones:

Manual vs Electric Operation

The first thing you should decide on is whether you want to buy a manual or an electric crab davit. The choice here depends on how serious you are about pulling, the amount of pulling you’re planning to do, and your budget.

It goes without saying that manual crab davits are limited in terms of lift capacity and pulling speed compared to electric models.

Mounting Location

Once you decide on the type of operation, you should check into the mounting location. The most common spots for mounting a manual crab davit are directly onto the railing or fishing rod holders because you’re unlikely to be pulling crab pots heavier than 200 pounds by hand.

As for electric models, the mounting locations can be a bit more demanding and specific, so be sure to check this in the description of the product.

Lift Capacity

The lifting capacity of a crab davit is a crucial point to consider as pots can get very heavy when they’re submerged and filled with crabs. You’ll need a puller that’s capable of retrieving such heavy crab pots without failing in the middle of the job.

Generally speaking, harvesting crab for recreational purposes requires an average lift capacity of around 100 pounds. This is achievable in both manual and electric models.

Construction

Your crab davit should bear a sturdy construction that can withstand harsh environmental conditions with minimal damage. The most commonly used materials in building davits are stainless and aluminum, which provides great durability without being too heavy.

Pulling Speed

This factor should concern you only if you’re planning on buying an electric crab davit. The faster the pulling speed of your unit, the more efficient it is when it comes to pot retrieval.

Note that the pulling speed is affected by the weight of the crab pot, the weight of the load, the current strength, as well as the depth at which you set the pot. As such, different pulls often take varying periods to complete.

Reach

The reach of your crab davit can make a big difference depending on the spot you’re crabbing from.

For example, crabbing from a kayak, a Jon boat, or a small boat can do just fine with a shorter arm. However, larger boats will need longer arms to reach over the side.

By doing so, you’ll be protecting your boat from damage and scratches caused by hits from the pots during retrieval.

Size

Finally, think of how big or small you want the crab davit to be. The size of the davit links directly to the ease of transport and storage after usage 

Wrap Up

Choosing the best crab davits can be a tricky task, especially with so many factors to consider such as operation mode, mounting location, lift capacity, and construction. This is why we included only the top-rated products on our list to make sure you end up with a reliable unit no matter what.

That being said, we recommend the Premium Heavy Duty Crab Pot Davit by Discovery Bay Marine Gear as today’s winner in the manual department thanks to its durability, efficiency, and convenience.

But if you’re looking for the best electric crab davit, then our vote goes for the Crab Pot Puller and Line Hauler by Trac Outdoors due to its fast pulling and decent lift capacity.

Happy Hunting!

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